For some reason, this important historical event has till now escaped the attention of astrologers. Upon re-reading about this event, it began to impress as having some potential to explain the real Russia - including Belarussia. However, it was only when the horoscope had been cast and examined that the meaning of the event truly came to light. Importantly, the new horoscope should change the way many westerners view Russia.
A COMPLICATED HISTORY
The search for an authentic horoscope for modern RUSSIA has likely been made difficult by the countries long existence and the many changes that have taken place in its government structures and territories. In recent years, most astrologers have focused on the breakdown of the Soviet Union (USSR) and the re-emergence of the national entity of Russia, also in the context of the Commonwealth of Independent Sates, in the early 1990s. These charts have been examined with the System's Approach and found to be lacking in terms of the natal potential, explanatory power and predictive promise. The search therefore necessarily continued, with the decisive event being found to be more recent than earlier thought.
THE BIRTH OF THE UNION
"On March 15 1996 the Russian Parliament called for the recreation of the USSR and on 17 March 1996 it renounced the Minsk declaration of December 1991, effectively declaring that the USSR still existed. This was a legal impossibility, but formed on the backdrop to the creation of confederation of Belarus and Russia on 2 April 1996, designed to institute economic union and a common foreign policy. The Commonwealth of Russia and Belarus (SSR) was set up by a treaty signed in the Kremlin at 11:18 am (7:18 am GMT)".
THE SIGNING OF THE TREATY
On 2 April 1996 in Moscow, the President of Belarus A.G.Lukashenko and the President of the Russian federation B. Yeltsin signed a Treaty Establishing the Commonwealth of Russia and Belarus. The treaty was entitled “On deepening integration and comprehensive drawing together.” The Commonwealth of Russia and Belarus established in 1996 was a more consolidated interstate structure than the Commonwealth of Independent States by providing for the creation of an Interparliamentary Congress with 50 parliamentarians from each side, an executive body called the Integration Committee and a Union Court. According to president Lukashenka, a common parliament and constitution could follow later. The name of the new union (SSR in Russian) bears a striking resemblance with the name of the old USSR (SSSR).
Strengthening of the Union
The basis of the union was strengthened on April 2, 1997, with the signing of the "Treaty on the Union between Belarus and Russia " at which time its name was changed to the Union of Belarus and Russia. The treaty declared that the parties act in accordance with their constitutions and the norms and principles of international law. Several further agreements were signed on December 25, 1998, with the intention of providing greater political, economic, and social integration. The Treaty on the Creation of a Union State of Russia and Belarus was signed on December 8, 1999. The intention was to eventually achieve a federation like the Soviet Union ; with a common president, parliament, flag, coat of arms, anthem, constitution, army, citizenship, currency, etc. The current Union was ratified by the Russian State Duma on December 22, 1999 and the National Assembly of Belarus on January 26, 2000. The latter is the date the Treaty and the Union officially came into effect.
EARLIER NOTABLE EVENTS
There are several notable events on the path to Russian national independence. On June 12, 1990, at around 13:15-13:45 am [LMT], the Russian Duma declared the sovereignity of the Russian Federative Republic within the Soviet Union (USSR). This moment represents an important milestone on the path to Russian independence and the breakup of the Soviet Union. While asserting the right of the Russian Republic's to control its own internal affairs independently of the Soviet government, Russia had still not become a fully independent state. The dramatic coup attempt and its repeal by Boris Yeltsin in August 1991 did not alter the state itself. However. a second important event was the so-called Minsk Agreement on December 8, 1991, which signaled the dissolution of the Soviet Union and, according to leaders of Russia, its purpose was to "allow a civilized divorce" between the Soviet Republics . Some astrologers consider the event when Boris Yeltsin announced the Minsk Agreement on this day as a declaration of the independence of Russia and the basis of its horoscope. While this date may have had relevance it is possible its significance has been usurped by latter developments. In this regard, it is important to note that the subsequent creation of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) on December 21, 1991 did not create a new state unto itself. This has been emphatically stated by legal scholars and is supported by the fact that the CIS is not endowed with supranational powers. At most, the CIS is compared to a loose confederation akin to the European Community that preceeded the European Union . As such, the creation of the CIS has little relevance for the consideration of a horoscope for Russia.
By contrast, the formation of the Union of Russia and Belarus on April 2, 1996 represents the vertiable creation of a NEW STATE. While the new Union has been characterised as a “loose union state,” it is still very much a state. Moreover, the political integration has been proceeding as envisaged, with the heads of state of Russia and Belarus intimately involved. A process of monetary integration is also underway.
"As the major partner in the Formation of Community is Russia the date of April 2, 1996, would be appropriate to be considered [as the basis for Russia's horoscope]." - V.K. Choudhry, creator of the Systems' Approach.
The Union of Russia and Belarus reminds of the Union of Great Britain and Ireland in 1801 which still serves as the basis for the authentic horoscope for the UK.
INCREASING POLITICAL INTEGRATION
As aimed at, the political cooperation between heads of state has been increasing.
"On May 27, 2008, President Lukashenko, acting in his current capacity as Chairman of the Supreme State Council named current Russian Prime Minister, and former President, Vladimir Putin Chairman of the Council of Ministers. This move has raised speculation that the Union is about to undergo a significant political transformation as a vehicle for Prime Minister Putin's political objectives after he was constitutionally barred from seeking a third term as President of the Russian Federation in 2008. Until now, the most visible and arguably important official in the Union has been the State Secretary, who runs the Union State's day to day operations. In the same meeting, State Secretary Borodin announced that the 2009 Union State budget would total 6-7 billion Russian rubles, an increase of over 2 billion rubles from 2008"  .
PROBLEMS IN RELATIONS
Relations between the two countries have not been flawless. There was a brief dispute over energy in early 2007.
"The Russia-Belarus energy dispute began when Russian state-owned gas supplier Gazprom demanded an increase in gas prices paid by Belarus, a country which has been closely allied with Moscow and forms a loose union state with Russia. It escalated on January 8, 2007, when the Russian state-owned pipeline company Transneft stopped pumping oil into the Druzhba pipeline which runs through Belarus because Belarus was siphoning the oil off the pipe without mutual agreement. On January 10, Transneft resumed oil exports through the pipeline after Belarus ended the tariff that sparked the shutdown, despite differing messages from the parties on the state of negotiations" . While this contentious issue was resolved, including with Russia granting Belarus a large loan, the dispute evidently angered many Belarusians.
The time and location gives 20° 44' Gemini rising. This ascendant is very fortunate to have due to the fact that it has fewer functional malefics than any other ascendant.
Key features of the chart
The 3rd lord SUN and 7th lord JUPITER are very strong in the chart, but the 4th house and its lord MERCURY are very afflicted. At the same time, the 2nd lord MOON is weak and its house afflicted.
"The chart does indicate good international position (strong Sun and Jupiter) and vulnerable economy, domestic peace and sensitive gains and fortunes." - V.K. Choudhry
3rd lord SUN at 19° 01' Pisces is closely conjunct the 10th house MEP, giving significant political influence, a very strong state and a President. The SUN is conjunt natal KETU at 23° 20' Pisces, which is not a serious concern due to the strength of the Sun and orb of affliction.
2nd lord MOON at 28° 37' Leo and 3rd house gives some influence from initiatives and public pronouncements. The Moon has just over 50% strength in this placement. The weakness is aggravated by the affliction of the 2nd house by KETU at 23° 20' Pisces. This makes Russia's status, wealth and relations with neighboring countries vulnerable to setbacks.
9th lord JUPITER at 22° 15' Sagittarius is conjunct the 7th house MEP, giving an expansive foreign policy and divine protection in this area. The religious and judicial affairs in the country would have international importance. The Russian Orthodox church is increasingly becoming important as it has re-established its presence in the country and in other countries after the fall of materialist Communism. Russian leaders of industrial companies would be powerful, both at home and abroad. The placement is also highly supportive of the indications of the 11th house of ideals and income, 1st house of self and fame and 3rd house of initiatives, commerce and transportation.
Interestingly, the famed writer Solzhenitsyn, the most notable 20th century critic of the excesses of the USSR, felt that the West had become corrupt and needed to rely more on its Christian heritage to restore the earlier glory. Russia's nationbuilding now seems to be advancing on this idea and this chart reflects that with this placement. Shortly before his death, Putin officially restored the status of Solzhenitsyn by awarding him a national medal of honor for his bravery in telling the truth about the horrors of Soviet Communism.
4th lord MERCURY at 24° 19' Pisces and the 10th house MEP, is debilitated, combust and closely conjunct natal functional malefic KETU at 23° 20'. Further functional malefic RAHU at 23° 20' Virgo is closely conjunct the 4th house MEP. These placements suggest 4th house matters, including natural resources, communal harmony and fixed assets, are highly vulnerable to sudden setbacks and crisis.
As RAHU also aspects the 12th and 8th houses, it could explain the role of the secret service (formerly the KGB) in clamping down on dissent and the apparent murder of notable journalists who made a a name for themselves by criticising the methods of Putin (a former KGB man). The condition of journalism is indicated by MERCURY. The Putin government has allegedly silenced critics abroad, esp. Litvinenko, former KGB spy and informant to the West, who was poisened to death in London in the fall of 2006. However, linking this to Putin is not necessarily correct. Another possible explanation is that it was the work of a rouge spy .
11th lord MARS at 12° 55' Pisces and 10th house, is well placed but slightly weakened by combustion. It is therefore reasonably strong, suggesting Russia has adequate military power and its income and ideals are linked to its place in the world.
9th lord SATURN at 5° 34' Pisces in the 10th house is well placed and widely combust, which suggests some luck in this area as well.
5th lord VENUS at 4° 53' Taurus is badly placed in the 12th house. The affliction of RAHU to the 12th house helps explain the adverse conditions of women in Russia, many of which have been exploited by a growing sex industry. It also suggests such areas as entertainment and stock speculation would not do well and might be more oriented towards foreign markets. Many very rich people in Russia, who want to live in luxury, have largely been forced to emigrate to countries like the UK and Switzerland. Luxury or creature comforts do not seem to be prominent in the daily life of most Russians. Many women in Russia seek to marry better off men in the west through the internet.
RUSSIAN FINANCIAL CRISIS OF 1998
One notable event in Russia's history is the countries default on its international debt obligations on 19 August 1998. The value of Russian assets and its currency, the Rouble, collapsed and many thought the country would fall apart (George Soros publised article in Financial Times on that day saying the crisis had reached its "terminal phase").
Sun/SATURN period was operating
- Transit stationary RAHU at 7° Leo was in close aspect with transit stationary and debilitated SATURN at 8° Aries in the 11th house of income. Russia did not have enough income to service its obligations.
- transit MERCURY was retrograde around 23° Cancer and second house of wealth under the close aspect of natal KETU. Fixed assets and collective harmony in Russia suffered a serious setback. Many politicians called for President Yeltsin to resign.
The crisis ended after the very harmful aspect of Rahu to Saturn came to an end in early 1999. Putin comes to power in August 1999 and Russia has for the most part been in ascendancy since, including the startling assertion of state power over oligarchs and critics abroad as well as independence minded neighboring states .
PRESENT CRISIS WITH THE WEST
The present crisis with the USA is clearly seen in this chart.
Moon/KETU period is now operating, since 14 August 2008. This suggests Russia may become increasingly isolated in until next year.
- transit stationary KETU at 24° 30' Cancer and 2nd house MEP is exactly afflicting natal 4th lord MERCURY at 24° 19' and natal KETU at 23° 20' Pisces and 10th house. Sudden setbacks are being realised in terms of the countries wealth and status and its communal harmony.
- transit stationary RAHU at 24° 30' Capricorn and 8th house MEP of obstacles is mutually afflicting its own placement in the 4th house and the 4th house.
Even if the Russian need to assert its influence is now on prominent display, it will likely result in upsets for the Russian people. This crisis should begin to lift later this year, as the nodal station lifts and be gone by Spring 2009. By 2010, when the SUN period begins, things are likely to improve significantly. Even if this crisis is making Russia look like a bully, it is likely the crisis also has to do with the Wests underestimation of Russias own sense of itself and its sense of its own rightful place in the world.
The acid test of the authenticity is always prediction, especially when the chart suggests a significant event is likely to take place. In this regard we may consider the transits in MID SEPTEMBER 2008. While an event may occur at any time until then, we can note for instance the aspects on September 12, 2008:
Moon/KETU period is operating
-transit KETU at 24° 20' Cancer and 2nd house is closely afflicting natal 4th lord MERCURY at 24° 19' Pisces and 10th house and natal KETU at 23° 20' Pisces.
- transit RAHU at 24° 20' Capricorn is closely afflicting natal RAHU at 23° 20' Virgo and 4th house
- transit 4th lord MERCURY is closely conjunct natal RAHU at 23° 20' Virgo and 4th house
- transit 11th lord MARS and transit 5th lord VENUS are also afflicted by natal and transit RAHU in 8th house
- transit 2nd lord MOON at 23° Capricorn and 8th house is aspected by natal RAHU and conjunct transit RAHU.
- transit 3rd lord SUN is in old age in Leo and 3rd house, along with transit SATURN.
At such a time, we would expect, if the chart were authentic indeed, that some sudden significant event would take place that disturbs the communal harmony.
This 20° Gemini chart (14° Cancer in the tropical zodiac) merits careful consideration as the authentic chart for RUSSIA. Importantly, it suggests Russia is a benign entity on the world stage, but one that has a need to assert itself vigorously after the humiliating collapse of Soviet Communism and the subsequent encroachment of the West into its sphere of influence.
 Nicholas Campion, "The Book of World Horoscopes", 1996 ed. Cinnabar Books, Wiltshire, England.
Audrius Žulys, 2005, “Towards A Union State Of Russia And Belarus”, Lithuanian Foreign Policy Review, issue: 1516.
 http://memory.loc.gov/frd/cs/belarus/by_appnb.html, date 24 August 2008.
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonwealth_of_Independent_States, date 24 August 2008.
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_of_Russia_and_Belarus, date 16 August 2008.
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia-Belarus_energy_dispute, date 16 August 2008.
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_journalists_killed_in_Russia, date 24 August, 2008.
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6179074.stm, date 16 August 2008.