Setting aside the Israeli story a moment, points of leverage may have involved the “Turkish Stream” energy project, a piece of “realpolitik”, and an appeal to the narcissistic concept of cultural leadership and state in which the “Great Leader” is the embodiment of the living state concept _and entitled_ to aggrandizement and glory without limit (or, clinically, “unlimited narcissistic supply). Putin’s vision appears to me to be that of the medieval world sustained with raw power put in place of democracy.
The look of the mode — big palaces, nepotism on a royal scale, confusion in relation to the boundaries of person and state (and the state’s treasury) — marks the medieval mind and related revanche.
Men like Putin, Assad, Khamenei, Erdogan, Orban may consider true popular democratic government as impeding their own authority, sovereignty, and will. While the term “autocrat” sounds quite bureaucratic, similar concepts — caliph, emperor, king, sultan — fit these guys.
Because we know of the “Moscow Apartment Bombings” and that Russia has been arming the Taliban in Afghanistan — and there’s more back there with Zawahiri and others — it may not be too far fetched to suggest that Moscow has manipulated terrorism to induce in struck targets a predictable patriotic new nationalism and that “the terrorists” — ISIS or PKK — now provide a platform for conflict, all against all, and without end. Where Putin has held sway, he has turned back history’s clock.
Our President Trump has had no issues bearing and wearing the mantle of authority, but it would be facile to say he hasn’t had some issues with the “Estates” of a matured democracy. In that regard, he may fit the world to which Putin has wished to return the world.
American holidays and strong community interaction with the military honor the military. Related concerts and parades are today legend for binding the nation into a coherent and cohesive entity worth defense and worthy of respect all around.
There are ancillaries in air shows and show components, e.g., Blue Angels, in other events.
The parading of missiles and tanks has been for most who produce that spectacle a boast and a threat associated with lesser power, not greater.
The Vietnam generation of military cannot be compensated nor, perhaps, repaired adequately, but all have been permanently honored, memorialized, remembered on the Mall and beyond that in America’s communities. If and where long-term disservice has been done, perhaps that conversation is the one that should be led by an American President.
“A Needle in the Rain”
(c)1996 J. S. Oppenheim & DRB Productions
Brief History Lesson Regarding the Vietnam Era and the Present
Hey, old college kids, remember the fatigue jackets, the grass, the Mobilization on the Mall, and the whole trippy deep ecology and far out peace thing?
Know that the Soviet Union invested $1 billion in the environmental and peace movements of the day (perhaps labor was already under way), and it got its money’s worth in the sabotaging of domestic will for that war. It would also come to lose influence with the hip when it demonstrated its true methods in “realpolitik” as it drove tanks into the Soviet satellite states that it had completely demoralized with its own narcissistic claptrap and thuggery.
I was young at the time — the last of the babies of the baby boomers — and on the draft rolls only briefly before our troops were brought home.
The “Active Measures” part of the Vietnam War is active today on Moscow’s part: disinformation, election meddling, war by proxy in support of kleptocratic dictatorships. If you approve of such methods and ends — much including the ownership of other humans as mere property and as well demonstrated by Moscow-aligned Bashar al-Assad and Iranian Grand Ayatollah Ali (“Hang ‘Em High”) Khamenei — do nothing, say nothing. If that’s not the world in which you wish the next generations to live, look back, get caught up on Orwell — or Hitchens on Orwell — for a start — and look forward to engaging in this now really different kind of war.
BackChannels believes the strong have cause to celebrate through national holidays and shared American events, but it is the weak that needs must put their muscle on display in parades.
When one works a few ideas around to a compressed or distilled state, one hates to lose them in cascades of commentary published through the social networks. Blogging helps preserve such thoughts and keep them available via keyword searches. This passage comes from an earlier take on the same theme:
With President Trump, the American public faces three deep challenges:
1) how do deal with disinformation in the long term — “Active Measures” from Russia’s machinery, deflection and related strategies involving information and (“Fake News!”) rhetoric;
2) how to resist our own deepening divisions to return to quintessential American ideals, principles, and values, starting with the valuing of integrity in business and government and consequent distaste for corruption;
3) how to address enemies that have found ways to blend and practice war indirectly, not only by proxy but with “frozen conflicts” aiding the movement of arms and narcotics worldwide and ability to deeply manipulate terrorism (e.g., see “Moscow Apartment Bombings”; read Anna Politkovskaya’s observations on the brutalizing of Chechen villages).
We may be in a little bit of trouble because the Cold War didn’t end quite where we thought it had and not much has prepared EU / NATO constituencies for its apparent phantoms and their still medieval political ambitions and views.
Chosen link for a look-see: “Hostility to Putin’s Russia is largely a Jewish phenomenon”:
Russia Insider’s mission is to explain and describe Russia and her role in the world. As soon as you begin to drill into how other nations relate to Russia, and Russian history, it becomes obvious that the unreasonable hostility towards Putin’s Russia, particularly coming from the US and the UK, is very much a Jewish phenomenon, and has been for centuries.
And yes, ‘Jewish’ is the only term that accurately describes it, and not one of the many euphemisms we frequently see used.
The most vitriolic and obsessive Russia-bashing journalists in the media are mostly Jewish. The publications which push these writers most energetically are ALL Jewish-owned, and as a publisher, I know very well, that is where the buck stops.
BackChannels most respectfully suggests that Colonel President Emperor and Pharaoh Putler — if that is how he wishes to be known — may consider either disassociating his godliness from so cliche and puerile a revanche of the Imperial style in Jew Hate or now let the world know now he endorses it!
Excerpt About the Forgery that Became Through the Agency of Russia’s 19th Century Okhrana — Tsar Nicholas II’s Secret Police — The Protocols of the Elders of Zion
A few months ago he bought a number of old books from a former officer of the “Okhrana” (Political Police) who had fled to Constantinople. Among these books was a small volume in French, lacking the title-page, with dimensions of 5½in. by 3¾in. It had been cheaply rebound. On the leather back is printed in Latin capitals the word Joli. The preface, entitled “Simple avertissement,” is dated Geneva, October 15, 1864. The book contains 324 pages, of which numbers 315-322 inclusive follow page 24 in the only copy known to Mr. X, perhaps owing to a mistake when the book was rebound. Both the paper and the type are characteristic of the “sixties and seventies” of the last century. These details are given in the hope that they may lead to the discovery of the title of the book [See Preface]. Mr. X. believes it must be rare, since, had it not been so, the “Protocols” would have speedily been recognized as a plagiarism by anyone who had read the original.
That the latter is a “fake” could not be maintained for an instant by anyone who had seen it. Its original possessor, the old Okhrana officer, did not remember where he obtained it, and attached no importance to it. Mr. X, glancing at it one day, was struck by a resemblance between a passage which had caught his eye and a phrase in the French edition of the “Protocols” (Edition de la Vieille France, 1920, 5, Rue du Préaux-Clercs, 5, Paris 7th Arrondissement). He followed up the clue, and soon realized that the “Protocols” were to a very large extent as much a paraphrase of the Geneva original as the published version of a War Office or Foreign Office telegram is a paraphrase of the ciphered original.
Before receiving the book from Mr. X, I was, as I have said, incredulous. I did not believe that Sergei Nilus’s “Protocols” were authentic; they explained too much by the theory of a vast Jewish conspiracy. Professor Nilus’s account of how they were obtained was too melodramatic to be credible, and it was hard to believe that real “Learned Elders of Sion” would not have produced a more intelligent political scheme than the crude and theatrical subtilties of the Protocols. But I could not have believed, had I not seen, that the writer who supplied Nilus with his originals was a careless and shameless plagiarist.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov seems unable to separate the good intent shown in producing this overdue course correction from the seeking of advantage yet against Ukraine and the nationalist posture once taken against the Jews. In fact, the Scheubner-Richter and Hitler relationship tells of a larger Russian history in the generation and dissemination of anti-Semitic libel and myth. Nonetheless, Lavrov’s stern comments may pave the way for a long overdue pivot westward and away from the crimes against humanity of the Stalin years, the Soviet Era, and, most recently the same delivered with horrific brutality by Assad — as flanked by Putin and Khamenei –to noncombatant Syrians across the course of the civil war.
The prompt from my conversational partner: “. . . to solve these problems, we need cooperation, not war. And the main question is why does the government not understand this?”
Paper, scissors, stone, and “paper” (money) covers and suffocates all beneath it while “liberating” those who have it and, perhaps (I don’t want to find out!), those who might believe themselves above it – or those of merely modest material ambitions.
My personal approach has been “Money Matters!” but is not everything; however, and this especially with our health care industry, there are forces producing polices I can’t field, and of course that inspires a yet impotent resentment.
Our government should be Christian, good-willed, and muscular (academic term “muscular Christianity” works in this regard), but it’s bending toward the criminals in the great mansions and penthouse suites, and I’ not talking about Bill Gates or most “plutocrats” but rather those who believe there are no boundaries between their perfect embodiment of the “isness” (I will find the word, literally) of their state and themselves. The businesses, the courts, the military and paramilitary elements, and legislatures are all theirs to exploit and manipulate on behalf of their preferred . . . associates. That’s dictatorship.
Let me see if I can find the word for existence as the authentic expression of spirit . . . .
“Esse” and “essence” were not what I was looking for but for an esoteric term having to do with the being of the thing within the thing. Believing in the singularity of person and state (as Ceausescu had; as Erdogan and Putin do) may comprise part of the messianic delusion suffered by dictators but unfortunately visited (with fist in the velvet glove, at best) on their subjected people.
I’m finding my reading of Russian history steeped in punitive control, and that doesn’t come with interest in “the masses” half so much as in the developing and sustaining of wealth beneficial to the image and power of the central figure in power.
Related, Recent, and Singular
On today’s Chinese and Russian totalitarian aggression in Global Information Space:
BackChannels maintains a brief bibliography of accessible and general volumes on Russia’s political history in the “Russian Section” of this blog. For greater insight into the authoritarian-patrimonial experience of the political culture from the 9th Century forward, I would recommend Richard Pipes’ fine history, Russia Under the Old Regime.
Punitive control: in geopolitical space and in the various ages of the “rule of the strong”, including for Russia and surrounds domination by the Mongols, the power to control space produces arrangements with in to produce wealth. Pipes’ — in the above cited volume — steps off with economic variance in the productivity of Russian land compared to soil fertility to the south to explain motivation for the social arrangements that would ensue in history and effect Russian political arrangements to this day. What Pipes appears to find essential — and what most concerns this blog — is the prince’s (or equivalent or greater in power) considering the ownership of property and persons the same thing. Worse — the test of sovereignty becomes the permit to engage in the wholesale destruction of both!
There’s one famous Buddhist monk who was on the cover of Time magazine a couple of years ago, and he’s described as a “Buddhist Bin Laden.” His name is Ashin Wirathu. He’s a very strange character because he wears the Buddhist garb, which is worn to demonstrate your withdrawal from the world. At the same time, he has diamond-studded watches; he flies on a private jet. It’s completely contradictory. He’s one of the main instigators of the violence. Buddhists believe in reincarnation, and Wirathu and followers of his Buddhist nationalist 969 movement believe that the Rohingya minority have all reincarnated from snakes and insects. So when you actually kill them, you’re not actually killing people, you’re actually just killing snakes and insects. That laid the foundation for the current situation that we’re in.
Who would know the beauty of a malignantly narcissistic kleptocracy better than Moscow?
And I will add, though it may be irrelevant, what hypocritical kleptocratic and medieval entity would know how to infiltrate and support terrorists worldwide better than Tehran?
Give the transitive formula a moment to sink in:
Chechnya : Myanmar
Ingush : Rohingya
The world has been once again drawn into global warfare, Moscow’s way.
By way of wholesale abuse and slaughter, the innocent of war have been pushed in both regions into flight and defensive conflict while being branded as “The Terrorists” — perhaps not unrelated to the process that has burned through Syria but the very facsimile of it.
Given how Moscow / Moscow-Tehran work, the world gets “The Terrorists” — and, oh, they’re real in an of themselves, they’re channeled with their ranks filled out by the efforts of manipulating “leaders” greater than themselves.
Related in the News
There is an urgent need for de-escalation in levels of violence in Rakhine State as there is a strong possibility of other displaced Rohingyas being radicalised by Sunni fundamentalist groups including the Bangladesh chapter of the Islamic State to take to arms. The Rohingya displacement is a matter of serious concern but the root cause of increased animosity among the Burmans and other ethnic groups against the minority community should also not be glossed over. The international community has questioned Myanmar for the crisis but has forgotten the bloody contribution of Pakistan-based jihadist groups to this catastrophe.
His family has been looting, his friends have been looting, and in the process he has weakened the state, divided the ANC, divided the alliance. We continue to deal with the mess, and it will take a long time to clean up.” —
One dictatorship can undo many of the gains made by ethical and modern revolutionaries. A nod here to the South Africans letting Jacob Zuma know he has gone off the track.
Zuma, not unlike Robert Mugabe, may also represent an execrable representation of the claim to leading a “people’s liberation movement” as a means to autocratic and elitist power. This time, however, the communist alignment has turned on the leader over the matter of corruption.
“We never fought the struggle to liberate the country to hand over our economy to the Guptas,” he declared, accusing the ANC leadership’s attacks on “white monopoly capital” of being “a Marxist-flavored narrative [used] as an alibi for parasitic plundering.”
Inspiration: Mandela on the promotion of national reconciliation.
Lesson to be learned: if you should happen to develop or inherit high ethical and moral capital and standing, don’t squander it with a now old and tiresome charade.
In states burdened today by the legacy of “medieval political absolutism”, the narcissistic egomaniac only appears to represent the cultural spirituality of the state, but the same presumptuously does as much at any and every cost to The People — and that may include what has happened to the Palestinian People.
The malign qualities in leadership may stem from damage done to the self-concept of the leader in childhood or youth as humiliation or similar injury finds an antidote in that person’s reinvention of personality and its appearance. In the context of militarized societies or others obsessed with honor, the observation that the people ultimately create the Great Leader — and the Great Leader becomes also their own Great Burden — would seem to have become in this era entirely predictable.
The prompt: a discussion about why Arafat failed to set up conditions for a Palestinian democratic society.
The most basic and honest answer to that is this: Arafat’s handlers in Moscow forbid him any development of liberalism or democracy in territories to which he was assigned. Instead, Moscow asserted its will to impose itself on the Palestinian People and produce a sustained conflict beneath which many would profit from long decades engaged in corruption, crime, and related patronage. The would be no justice within the Palestinian community for the leadership and its cronies.
More recently, as noted in the BackChannels piece, “Palestinian KGB” (cited above), it has been revealed that Mahmoud Abbas has himself had KGB status — a fact of life that never goes away — and appears today to be as hamstrung in his political stance as his predecessor and probably for the same reason. He may be representing modern Palestinian interests far less than the archaic medieval interests of Moscow in sustaining dictatorships and the related looting-by-leadership known to too many Soviet-style intimidated and subjugated populations worldwide.
For the greater base of the Palestinian people, the Middle East Conflict has been a good business for the Palestinian privileged by way of the favor of politically criminal Palestinian leaders.
Dictators, terrorists, and totalitarian ideologues, almost by definition, cannot tolerate being laughed at. Nor can anyone with an inflated ego and thin skin. Ridicule is their Achilles’ heel. And, humor is a robust underground phenomenon in any society. The Soviet leadership was so fearful of humor that the KGB had what Russian comedian Yakov Smirnov called a “Department of Jokes.” That was not the real name of the department, which had a more anodyne designation as a subunit of the KGB’s political enforcement section, the Fifth Chief Directorate, but Smirnov’s nickname for it made the KGB look all the more weak and bizarre (although all jokes still had to be KGB approved).6