Grand Eurasian Empire Stumbles at the Gate

President Putin strives to project strength but he is a limited politician who, in common with so many of those who went before him, lacks the imagination and capacity to establish Russia as an admired, serious and constructive player on the global stage…

…President Putin wants his Country to call the shots but Russia simply lacks the real demographic muscle to sustain itself as a credible superpower in the 21st century. President Putin should be taken seriously because he is dangerous but not because he leads a great nation. He does not. __ Grand Eurasian Empire Not Ready for Prime Time

Putin wants to establish a grand Eurasian Empire from the West of Europe to the Pacific Ocean. But something happened at the start of the great Eurasian revolution: Ukraine opted out.

Pro-Western parties have emerged as the big winners in Ukraine’s parliamentary elections. According to exit polling, the Poroshenko Bloc—controlled by President Petro Poroshenko—earned 23 percent of the vote, while a party aligned with Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk secured 21.3 percent. Both parties favor policies designed to bring Ukraine closer to Europe, and in a statement issued on Saturday Poroshenko said that a parliamentary majority would help him govern more effectively. __ Ukraine’s Oktober Elections

And so Ukraine has an elected government, free of Moscow’s strings, and other Eastern European nations are preparing to join the resistance movement initiated by Ukraine. Ukraine has long served as the brains and breadbasket of the Russian empire. As many have observed, without Ukraine, Russia is a weakling empire at best, and a rapidly shrinking imaginary nation at worst.

What does Putin intend to do about this latest Oktober surprise (besides killing more people)?

Use Propaganda! Lots of Propaganda!

Under the direction of Vladimir Putin, Russia is drawing on the propaganda techniques of the Cold War. Moscow decides on a message, as in the case of Ukraine, then sends this out to an “army of officers” who disseminate it. The impact of Russian disinformation is felt throughout Central Europe and the international community. Putin has built a vast disinformation machine inside Russia that has influence within neighboring countries, particularly among Russian speakers in those countries.

Within Russia itself, media freedoms have eroded. Russia has enacted numerous media laws under Putin that criminalize libel (which has been used as a pretext to silence opposition journalists), restrict access, and otherwise curtail media freedoms. Russian journalists have been targeted with violence, even murder.

Recently, an independent TV channel was excluded from Russian cable/satellite programing; Russia is banning various channels and programs, including VOA. __ Propaganda Nation

Well of course, vermin scurry from the light. The sad thing is how many people in the relatively free western countries seem to be drawn toward the perverse totalitarian logic of Russian propaganda.

Russian propagandists will claim that Russia is merely misunderstood. The claim is made that “Russia is being humiliated” by incursions into its traditional spheres of influence. They say that Putin is justified in killing thousands in Ukraine, and annexing parts of other sovereign nations by force.

A more subtle line of reasoning often used to discourage western sanctions against Russia, is the claim that “Russia Just Needs A Little More Time to Grow Up”:

The collapse of the Russian Empire deeply troubled many of its citizens, and the later collapse of the Soviet Union gave them a disturbing sense of deja vu. Even today, millions of Russians wax nostalgic for the past — particularly for the Soviet Union — recalling much that was also good from that time.

This is the second time in a century that Russia has gone through such painful “withdrawal symptoms” while overcoming its imperialist mentality…

… When the time comes, Russia will let go of the last vestiges of its imperial past. __ Russia Stuck in the Past

But given the violence unleashed by the Russian government, it is more likely that such pleas for “more time to adjust to reality” will fall on deaf ears.

The current attempt to substitute a coherent image of the future with a hodgepodge of obsolete Soviet ideas only underscores the ideological poverty of the current regime. That jumble of unprincipled, opportunistic journalism, primitive television propaganda and primeval myths about how the Western world wants to enslave Russia, push it to its knees and steal its minerals, land, water and air is no vision of the future. It is only a horror story borrowed from the dusty past that offers no constructive plan or direction. __Putin: No Clue What to Do

In the effort to preserve and add upon “The Great Eurasian Empire,” Putin has caused the spotlight of the entire world to focus upon Russia’s jumbled delusions and impossible goals and mindsets. The seeds for yet another revolution in Russia are being sown:

Der Spiegel identified the chief Kremlin hardliner as Sergei Glasjev, 53, a Putin adviser who is responsible for Russia’s relations with Ukraine. It claimed that Mr Glasjev considered Europe “degenerate” and the United States to be Russia’s enemy. It said he wanted Russia to turn its back on the West and that he believed China should replace Europe as the country’s most important partner. Der Spiegel said Mr Glasjev welcomed the prospect of EU sanctions.

However, the magazine said Russia’s oligarchs were well aware that their country depended on Western machinery and know-how. Alexei Kudrin, a liberal former Russian finance minister, told Der Spiegel: “If sanctions are imposed against the entire Russian finance sector then our economy would collapse within six weeks.”

… Evidence of a Kremlin power struggle emerged after the EU this weekend expanded its list of Russians subject to sanctions to a total of 87 people and 20 organisations.

The German intelligence service’s assessment of the power play under way in the Kremlin is likely to have played an important role in deciding Berlin’s attitude to economic sanctions. __ Cracks in Kremlin Power Facade

Putin could have chosen the peaceful path to cooperation and reconciliation. But that approach would be incompatible with the mindset of “The Great Eurasian Empire.” The mindsets of Putin — and many Russians in general — have grown rigid and sclerotic. It is true that senile thinking cannot change quickly. But in Russia’s case, allowing the crippled bear more time to invade more countries would be counter-productive.

Russia’s neighbors begin to prepare for Russian aggression

As Europe devises alternatives to Russian natural gas, the economic pressure on Russia to behave in a civilised manner for a change will increase.

More background on Crazy Ideologue Alexandr Dugin, and the role he apparently played in Putin’s grand, counter-productive Ukrainian advanture.

It seems that the Kremlin has bought into Dugin’s Eurasia doctrine and is trying to implement it, which is a sad state of affairs, and dangerous. Russia may not be as powerful as Putin would like to dream, but it is far too powerful to be guided by the vision of a madman like Dugin.

How large is this Grand Eurasian Empire meant to grow?

Dugin believes that the Eurasian state must incorporate all of the former Soviet states, members of the socialist block, and perhaps even establish a protectorate over all EU members. In the east, Dugin proposes to go as far as incorporating Manchuria, Xinxiang, Tibet, and Mongolia. He even proposes eventually turning southwest toward the Indian Ocean. __ The Man Who Has Putin’s Ear Brain

More: https://alfinnextlevel.wordpress.com/2014/09/04/is-that-daft-of-wind-blowing-through-putins-brain-a-mere-smokescreen/ (note: “daft” is shorthand for “daffy draft”)

Note: It should be clear to anyone not drunk or senile, that Russia is no longer the great global power it was formerly believed to be. Russia should therefore not be treated as if it were still the grand imperial superpower that the USSR pretended to be, and the Russian Empire before it. Both earlier Russian empires were Potemkin Villages, which collapsed rapidly. And if that were the case, how much more is it the case for today’s Russia?

There is no better example of Russia’s political failings than the £31 billion spent on the Winter Olympics when, just four years earlier, Vancouver put on a great show for £4 billion. How could a country that wishes to be regarded as a great nation squander such precious financial resource on the Sochi vanity project when male life expectancy within its borders is barely more than sixty, nearly twenty years less than across the EU? And it is demographics that are at the root of Russia’s problems. This vast and often beautiful country may be blessed with plenty of natural resources but to be a global superpower you need a global population and it is in this category Russia falls well short. Its enormous acreage is home to a population of only 143 million – a figure that is diminishing rapidly with the country’s plunging fertility rates and one that is forecast to be little more than 130 million in twenty years time.

President Putin may have persuaded his compatriots that their most pressing problems are to be found on their western borders but this is at best a technique in distraction. The real threat to Russia’s long-term stability and territorial integrity comes from China, a country that will increasingly cast covetous glances towards the largely empty lands of its under populated northern neighbour. Indeed, where the Chinese have been invited to cross the border they have succeeded in making parts of southern Siberia “bloom” in a way that no Russian, past or present, has been able to achieve.

President Putin strives to project strength but he is a limited politician who, in common with so many of those who went before him, lacks the imagination and capacity to establish Russia as an admired, serious and constructive player on the global stage…

…President Putin wants his Country to call the shots but Russia simply lacks the real demographic muscle to sustain itself as a credible superpower in the 21st century. President Putin should be taken seriously because he is dangerous but not because he leads a great nation. He does not.

More: Eastern Europe Prepares to Destroy Russian Tanks

US oil producers can thrive with prices at $80 bbl. The same is not true for Russia.

Potemkin shows of force become more necessary as an empire dies from apparently cutting its own throat

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2 Responses to Grand Eurasian Empire Stumbles at the Gate

  1. bob sykes says:

    The Ukrainian election ratified what has been obvious for sometime: Ukraine, like Syria and Iraq, is a fragmented state. The only questions are (1) where the border in the east will be drawn and (2) will Novorossiya be and independent state or a province in Russia.

    The plus side of the election is that the openly Nazi parties Swoboda and Right Sector and openly Nazi politicians like Timoshenko have lost ground. The minus is that the government will continue to consist of corrupt oligarchs like Poroshenko and no improvement in economic conditions or living standards will be possible.

    As to Russia, as usual you analysis is overblown and unconvincing. In anything, Russia’s long slide seems to be ameliorating. After all, Russia remains what it has been for decades– the pre-eminent nuclear power. America’s nuclear deterrent is in disarray, the land-based missiles and bombers and their crews are unreliable. All the systems are obsolete. Most importantly, Obama would almost certainly not respond to nuclear attack on the US and would order our strategic forces to stand down. A coup with multiple assassinations would be likely in that event. Meanwhile Russia is part way through and extensive modernization program.

    However, the important issue, not discussed, is context. Is Russia declining more rapidly than the West or less rapidly.

    The fundamental problem in Russia, Europe and America is that white people refuse to have children. In parts of Mediterranean Europe and East German, each new white generation is only half the previous one. Significant parts of Spain, Italy, Greece and East Germany have been abandoned. The situation among white Americans is less severe, but actual population decline is cooked in.

    The situation in US/EU is aggravated by the decisions of the (white) Ruling Classes to import very large numbers of low IQ, uneducated, uneducable, unskilled and untrainable black and brown people. The IQ’s of the African blacks being imported to Europe are around 70; those of the Mexicans and Central Americans coming to the US are 85 or less.

    This gives rise to two serious problems. First, the immigrants are parasitical on the US/EU economies. Moreover, as their numbers increase they will not be able to maintain the current US/EU economies and an actual decline in GDP is certain for both.

    The second big problem is that the immigrants are unassimilable, and by choice. The Africans, virtually all of whom are Muslim, are intensely hostile to European culture and mores and want to impose their own cultures and religions on white Europeans. This is actually a continuation of the ancient Muslim invasion and conquest. The Mexicans are somewhat more compatible, in part because they are Catholic, but the great majority of them do not recognize the legitimacy of American rule over the Southwest. La Raza is, in part, a secessionist movement.

    It is hard to see how race wars in America and Europe can be avoided, and even outright civil war is at least possible. In that case, the US/EU militaries are unreliable.

    • alfin2101 says:

      Dysgenic decline in Europe, East Asia, and the Anglosphere has always received ample and open coverage in the Al Fin blogs. Russia’s decline is something quite different, with much deeper penetration to the core.

      Perhaps we should consider whether Putin’s violent actions in Eastern Europe are hurting or helping Russia’s future. Putin’s bloody violence appears to have backfired — since more capital, brains, and wombs seem to be fleeing Russia now. This problem is being exacerbated by low global oil prices. But even before the oil price slump, industrial decay in O & G, weapons production, and in general across Russia’s industrial sectors, were beginning to bite.

      With the loss of Ukrainian design and production, and with the loss of overseas investment and technical assistance, the bite is deep and toxic. China cannot even begin to fill the loss.

      The rapid collapse of Russia’s 2 empires in the 20th century provide a preview of what is likely to happen to Putin’s great Eurasian Empire in the not too distant future.

      Nuclear weapons are best used as a deterrent to nuclear attack. Without Ukraine to design and build special rocket and missile guidance systems, Russia will need to turn to China. That can be risky if Russia expects its nuclear missiles to deter China as well as the affluent west.

      Much of the Russian nuclear fleet is as poorly maintained as Russia’s oil fields and pipelines, and kept mainly as a Potemkin deterrent. That is fine as long as no one initiates a prolonged exchange. Otherwise, the fatal nihilism of Russia will reach its end.

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