Putin Regime Purging Western-Oriented Russians and Even Treating China as Russia’s Elder Brother, Shelin Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, July 1 – Russian rulers in the past have often sought to remove those they viewed as too European or Western in orientation, Sergey Shelin says; but Vladimir Putin’s current efforts in that direction “promises to be a record one,” something that promises to have both short-term and long-term consequences.

            Some commentators have suggested that Putin himself is “the only European” left among the leadership in Moscow, according to the Rosbalt commentator; but “the former ‘only European’ is cleansing his land of other simple Europeans in a planned way and with growing energy” (rosbalt.ru/blogs/2021/07/02/1909630.html).

            The forced retirement of Yaroslav Kuzminov, the foundering rector of the Scientific Research Institute of the Higher School of Economics, is clear evidence of this. He is now a former leader precisely because of the sin of a European orientation, something the ruler in the Kremlin is no longer prepared to accept in his underlings.

            Like many others of his kind, Kuzminov has been playing defense against the attacks of the Kremlin and its supporters for some time; but the situation has now become unbearable for people like himself. They have retreated as far as they can without completely betraying the principles by which they live.

            The labelling of the Oxford Russia Foundation and Bard College as undesirable organizations is part and parcel of this Kremlin drive, one in which Europeanness or Westernness “has ceased to be a shortcoming and instead has become a stigma” the regime is no longer prepared to tolerate.

            What is especially striking, Shelin continues, is that in the past Europeanness did not signify disloyalty but rather an openness to the West. But now under Putin, the two things are viewed as one and the same, something that has the effect of cutting Russia off from the advantages of such contacts.

            Peter the Great was “much more repressive than his predecessors but he forced Russians to dress like Europeans, learn languages, study science and what was most important to build a modern military.” Other tsars and tsarinas did the same, taking what they could from Europe and then applying it to Russia.

            According to Shelin, “’the Europeanism’ of the tsarist and Soviet empires consisted not in the absence of wars with European powers but in the ability to find among them allies for itself. All great victories were achieved with the help of coalitions and the failures, for example, in the Crimean War, happened when Russia struggled against the entire ‘West.’”

            Just how far this turning away from the West has gone, the commentator continues, was reflected in Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s recent article in which he took pleasure in Western failures and celebrated Chinese achievements (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2021/07/putin-and-lavrov-have-left-russia.html).

            In the past, Shelin points out, “the successes of others never became for our powers the subject of praise, but now the losses of the West have so emboldened them that they are able to forget about their own shortcomings.” But that is not the most striking thing about the new anti-Europeanness and anti-Westernism which informs the Kremlin.

            The readiness of Russian leaders to sign on as “lesser brothers of China, Turkey or Iran … is something absolutely foreign to any previous Russian regime over the past 300 years,” the commentator says. It throws Russia back to its distant past, one that Russian rulers have struggled mightily in the past to escape.

            Not only is the Kremlin’s current anti-European campaign deeper and more “rabid” than any in the recent past, it is far longer than any of those. (Stalin’s was deep but did not last long; Putin’s is in many ways deeper and has already lasted at least twice as long as Stalin’s and perhaps longer, Shelin suggests.

            That is a civilizational shift against which Russians in the future will have to struggle against or suffer the consequences.

(c) Window on Eurasia

5 comments

  • “Not only is the Kremlin’s current anti-European campaign deeper and more “rabid” than any in the recent past, it is far longer than any of those.”

    Russia is not a European country, the evidence is here with Putler’s anti West stance. Muscovy need removing from all European organisations, as the only reason they are part of them, is to destroy them from within. Do Europe need Russia for anything, and that includes gas and oil, which are readily available elsewhere? Europe I’m afraid has tossed it’s democratic, human rights and morals in the trash can, and you need look no further than the frogs and krauts. If Russia interfered in Brexit, it’s the best thing they ever did for the UK.

    Liked by 4 people

    • The DNA of Moskovia has never changed in 300 or 500 years, so you can bet it will continue as Putin encourages Russia culture. Moskali are many things but their roots are thievery, deceit, violence and banditry. These values are incompatible with western values. As you said, they have nothing we need. Any work with them is purely to help them become like us….which is not what they want. Its best to just force them to stay home and localize the disease. Why Ukraine’s leaders do not close the border is beyond me.

      Liked by 4 people

      • Life was so much better in the West before the wall collapsed, releasing the stinking horde that was contained behind it. Now we have the same situation that caused the wall to be built in the first place, Russia and Germany colluding to rule Europe.

        Liked by 5 people

        • I disagree. The islamic hordes invaded Europe, in particular Germany, long before 1989. I’m glad we pushed Ivan out of most of eastern Europe. Germany has little to say in eastern Europe, luckily.

          Liked by 1 person

  • onlyfactsplease

    “The readiness of Russian leaders to sign on as ‘lesser brothers of China, Turkey or Iran … is something absolutely foreign to any previous Russian regime over the past 300 years, ‘the commentator says. It throws Russia back to its distant past, one that Russian rulers have struggled mightily in the past to escape.”
    A collection of trash countries.
    At any rate, making mafia land going backward in time and development seems to have been lilli-putin’s goal and in this, he was successful. If he thinks that any of the other trash countries are his true friends, he is a bigger fool than even I thought possible. In particular bat virus land will one day soon make the mafiosi experience a very rude awakening.

    Liked by 4 people

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.