*Originally posted on Hubpages March 9, 2014*
This one I wrote at a time when US and European leaders were pushing the false narrative that Vladimir Putin was trying to ressurect the USSR.
The post-Cold War Era is over
February 27, 2014 will go down in history as the day the post-Cold War Era effectively ended; when Russian troops began occupying Crimea. However, what is unfolding is no rebirth of the Soviet Union; as Western leaders have been suggesting.
The basis of their flawed conclusion is Russian President Vladimir Putin being a former KGB Colonel. The basis is narrow-minded, and fogs Putin’s own personal history as well as Russian history.
Vladimir Putin is not a communist, not even a socialist. Shortly before the bank bailouts and resulting ‘Great Recession’ Pres. Putin made a G8 Summit speech in which he warned the West, that they were engaging in too much ‘state central planning’ of their economies and cited the Soviet collapse as the perfect lesson in the folly of doing so.
Pres. Putin regularly attends Russian Orthodox Church and sings in the choir. Communists do not go to church; they burn them down. In communist nations, there is no god before ‘dear leader’ and no religion before the ‘the state’.
Putin embraces the Russian Orthodox Church as a pillar of Russian society and beacon of guidance and wisdom in civil governance of Russia. He has voiced that religion is vital to the fabric of Russian society, and to promote family life at a time when Russia’s population is teetering on the edge of a dangerous birth rate crisis.
The next layer of fog shrouds Western thinking about modern Russian society. Here again, it is viewed with one thought in mind, former Communists.
Soviet Communism never succeeded in suppressing Russian nationalism on a cultural level, nor separating the intertwine between Russian Orthodox Christianity and pre-Soviet Russian history.
The Bolsheviks were not able to turn the tide on the battlefield or in the minds of citizens during the Russian Civil War, until they struck deals with White Russian and former Czarist factions and leaders. The deal was that though all of the former Russian Empire’s realm would be reclaimed with the Hammer & Sickle fluttering in the breeze above it, ethnic Russians would dominate it all, just as before.
One of the few exceptions to this dominance was Joe Stalin, an ethnic Georgian. Upon his ascension to power, Stalin spared no effort to purge top Russian leaders in all sectors of society and the Communist Party to weaken Russian dominance.
Hitler’s race war against Russians, and Communism not being a cause Russian soldiers would rally to however, forced Stalin’s hand. The choke hold on Russian nationalism was relaxed and even religious activity in the ranks of the Red Army was permitted. Political commissars were removed from army units.
Stalin again tightened his hold after 1945. But, the genie was back out of the bottle. Following Stalin’s death, Russian nationalism quietly grew. With rare exceptions, higher positions in Soviet government, society, and the Communist Party were held by ethnic Russians only.
Soviet military unit structure was kept entirely localized. Units, divisions and armies were formed from among the populations of the Soviet republics in which they were assigned. One consequence of this, was the large arsenal and land forces Ukraine inherited upon independence following the Soviet collapse. Those land forces, were almost entirely manned by ethnic Ukrainians.
Putin seeks to re-establish the borders of the former Russian Empire which, with the exceptions of Poland and Finland, are nearly the same as that of the former USSR.
We now see Russian troops and pro-Russian demonstrators displaying the Ribbon of St. George, established in 1769 by Empress Catherine the Great, which represents military valor in the service of Imperial Russia. We see Russian Orthodox Priests intermingled with Russian troops in Crimea news footage.
The mere appearance of either of the above to a Russian Communist, would be the equivalent of sunlight to Dracula. The USSR is dead, and is not coming back. Filling that vaccum is Nationalist Russia.