In any assessment and understanding of Belarus, the key questions to address include; why has Belarus apparently rejected independence under its first president Alyaksandr Lukashenka, and sought a union with Russia? Why has the government rejected democracy, infringed on the human rights of its citizens and fundamentally altered its constitution in favour of presidential authority? Has the country made any progress toward market reforms? How have Russia and the West responded to the actions of Belarus? And what is the future likely to hold for its ten million citizens? The author's conclusions are optimistic. Belarus, he believes, will survive into the twenty-first century, but as a Eurasian rather than a European state.