Pt. VIII: Problems with Contemporary Russian Westernizers
However, the mystery of the failure of all revolutions in Russia is a topic of a separate study. Today we will simply mark the fact that political evolution of the country did not take place.
Of course, one can do without a revolution but, alas, it is the revolution which gives an entrance ticket to the future. In addition, the revolution cleans up the country from the corrupt traditions and administrative dead thing. Such sediments are accumulated on any state’s framework, and Russia is a very severe case of that. Russia entered the 21st century without a single revolution in its history, its underlying mechanisms have never been updated: they keep on rumbling, generating lies, fear and war.
It is interesting to see how the Russian language appropriates and redefines foreign words. I’m not using the term ‘liberal(ism)’ here because in Russia it turned into a pejorative: partly due to the collective memory of Yeltsin & Co. shock and awe ‘Westernization’, partly due to the certain positioning in Russia’s MSM. Western discourse-mongers use such found-in-translation cases in their self-fulfilling prophecy holy propaganda war, painting ‘the Russians’ as barbaric hordes of inborn totalitarians. Thus, I prefer to stick to the good old ‘Westernizer‘ term (in Russian – zapadnik) that is much more neutral.
Some thoughts after reading another analytical piece on Russia: there are some repetitive motives which I’ve noticed in the Western Russia discourse. I’m on my tourist trip to Veliky Novgorod now, so I’ve decided to publish a quick update on one of this ‘cornerstones’. Continue reading Gas Pipe Dreams Holy Media Crusade→
Pt. IV: Vodka vs Caviar, or the Eternal Opposition?
Again a tussle with Europe (oh, it’s not a war yet: they say that we – Russia, that is – are still a long way from war). Again the endless Eastern Question is in the news; and again in Europe they are looking mistrustfully at Russia…. Yet why we should go running to seek Europe’s trust? Did Europe ever trust the Russians? Can she ever trust us and stop seeing us as her enemy? …
Captain Obviov, Lost Letters & Memoirs, 1989-2009.
…Let me quote Romano Prodi once again: “Russia and the EU are united like vodka and caviar“. He tried to modify an English proverb – ‘like whiskey and soda’. But my Russian friends told me that vodka and caviar are not always perceived integrally in Russia. Perhaps, I will advise him to say like vodka and herring next time.