Putin changing the game
In a rare but nonetheless welcome appearance of Lord T comes this article on the missed conference in which Putin has altered the rules of the game … or has he?
Most people in the English-speaking parts of the world missed Putin’s speech at the Valdai conference in Sochi a few days ago, and, chances are, those of you who have heard of the speech didn’t get a chance to read it, and missed its importance. (For your convenience, I am pasting in the full transcript of his speech below.) Western media did their best to ignore it or to twist its meaning. Regardless of what you think or don’t think of Putin (like the sun and the moon, he does not exist for you to cultivate an opinion) this is probably the most important political speech since Churchill’s “Iron Curtain”speech of March 5, 1946.
Having read it all now, I’d half agree and half say it’s always been the Kremlin’s position, just put a little less bluntly during the 1989 to 2007 period.
The Russian blogger chipstone summarized the most salient points from Putin speech as follows:
1. Russia will no longer play games and engage in back-room negotiations over trifles. But Russia is prepared for serious conversations and agreements, if these are conducive to collective security, are based on fairness and take into account the interests of each side.
2. All systems of global collective security now lie in ruins. There are no longer any international security guarantees at all. And the entity that destroyed them has a name: The United States of America.
3. The builders of the New World Order have failed, having built a sand castle. Whether or not a new world order of any sort is to be built is not just Russia’s decision, but it is a decision that will not be made without Russia.
4. Russia favors a conservative approach to introducing innovations into the social order, but is not opposed to investigating and discussing such innovations, to see if introducing any of them might be justified.
5. Russia has no intention of going fishing in the murky waters created by America’s ever-expanding “empire of chaos,” and has no interest in building a new empire of her own (this is unnecessary; Russia’s challenges lie in developing her already vast territory). Neither is Russia willing to act as a savior of the world, as she had in the past.
6. Russia will not attempt to reformat the world in her own image, but neither will she allow anyone to reformat her in their image. Russia will not close herself off from the world, but anyone who tries to close her off from the world will be sure to reap a whirlwind.
7. Russia does not wish for the chaos to spread, does not want war, and has no intention of starting one. However, today Russia sees the outbreak of global war as almost inevitable, is prepared for it, and is continuing to prepare for it. Russia does not war—nor does she fear it.
8. Russia does not intend to take an active role in thwarting those who are still attempting to construct their New World Order—until their efforts start to impinge on Russia’s key interests. Russia would prefer to stand by and watch them give themselves as many lumps as their poor heads can take. But those who manage to drag Russia into this process, through disregard for her interests, will be taught the true meaning of pain.
9. In her external, and, even more so, internal politics, Russia’s power will rely not on the elites and their back-room dealing, but on the will of the people.
To these nine points I would like to add a tenth:
10. There is still a chance to construct a new world order that will avoid a world war. This new world order must of necessity include the United States—but can only do so on the same terms as everyone else: subject to international law and international agreements; refraining from all unilateral action; in full respect of the sovereignty of other nations.
To sum it all up: play-time is over. Children, put away your toys. Now is the time for the adults to make decisions. Russia is ready for this; is the world?
Not arguing with any of that. If you click the link above, it gives you the whole speech, too long to reprint here, on what Putin was actually saying.
Yeltsin and Putin wanted Russia to join ‘the world’ and saw dollar signs in doing it. Putin is different to Yeltsin in depending, for his support, on the ultra-nationalist siloviki in Moscow, the old Soviet thuggery which has no place to go after the fall of the USSR.
Their man is Putin. Putin himself though has becoming bigger than his backers, if that’s possible and has direct support from many of the people unhappy about Russia no longer being a major player on the world stage. Many’s the maudlin round the table dinner discussion in Russia about the good old days and the Red Army and all that. No different to us in reverse.
Putin seems, to them, as the only hope, the only chance to get back to that and it’s not going to come through namby-pamby liberalism like Yabloko – at least in these people’s eyes.
It’s quite true that Putin is a dangerous man, that so much of Russia is in poverty and tied up in impossible regulations, that ‘liberal’ iconic ideas such as deviant marriage and other monstrosities are ruthlessly suppressed, he flies planes over the North Sea as a warning but a warning to whom?
From where he sits in the Kremlin, the U.S. is deliberately creating a situation, with the EU, of making two-thirds of the Ukraine into hostile territory, surrounding Russia with a hostile buffer, where once the USSR had a buffer hostile to the west.
And it’s not ‘the west’ as in us. It’s the west as in Them in the U.S. and in Europe. If Them are the real enemy, no matter in which country they reside, then Putin’s stance now – hardly just sabre-rattling – is not a worry to Them who think all will bow before them but is a worry to the people’s of the west.
Just as ‘the west’, meaning Them, is a very great worry to the peoples of Russia. I spoke to enough of them and they really do worry about what ‘the aggressive U.S.’ will do. In fact, the peoples on both sides get all gung-ho and the result can only play into the hands of Them who simply want war and conflagration. Blair is the archetypal spokesman for Them..
When the people wake up to who is actually playing them for fools, there can be hope. Not before then.