«Russia is a powerful and diplomatically fortunate force· she does not pose a threat to its neighbors or to Europe. But her defensive position must be impressive enough, to prevent any possible aggression against her» (Tsar Nicholas I).
Huntington’s Error and the Rise of Russia
May 29, 2019
The world community is going through one of the most crucial and nodal periods in the history of humanity. All it takes is a single glimpse on the developments, concerning the Ukraine, Syria, Iran, Venezuela and Turkey, namely the five main pieces in the mosaic of the international competition between the United States and the strategic partnership of the Russian Federation and China. Whatever the ideological/political direction of the observer of the international developments may be, a clear and objective outlook of the situation does not allow controversies: the strategic monarchy of the United States is in the process of its decomposition, inaugurating the inception of a new historical period for mankind, the so-called post-western era.
The gradual emergence of a multipolar international system and the formation of new centers of economic and political power perplex both the structure and the interpretation of international relations. Beyond any doubt, the global power and development potential is becoming decentralized, and is shifting towards the Asia-Pacific Region, eroding the global economic and political dominance of the traditional western powers, reinforcing alternative centers of power, under the influence of the Russian Federation and China.
Obviously, the structure of the international status quo, based on the strategic monopoly of the USA, is in serious jeopardy, for the first time since the initiation of the post-soviet era. A contingent collapse of the American militaristic empire , followed by the social instability and political violence, that Prof. Peter Turchin has predicted for the USA and Western Europe, will presumably bring about unpredictable consequences at global level (including the revision of the existing political boundaries), aiming at the deterrence of the impending multipolar world order and the states that support it, as well as the destabilization of the Russian Federation and the containment of its recovery in the international scene, as a leading global power.
Furthermore, we cannot underestimate the extent of the undermining of Russia’s vital interests by the West, as well as the subsequent escalation of the polarization between the two warring sides. According to the Foreign Policy Concept of the Russian Federation, the attempts made by western powers to maintain their positions in the world, including by imposing their point of view on global processes and conducting a policy to contain alternative centers of power, are detrimental to the long-term interests of all sides, run counter to the growing need for cooperation and lead to both a greater instability in international relations and growing turbulence on the global and regional levels.
The – undoubtedly – failed Euroatlantic architecture keeps adopting an obsolete Cold War mentality, which does not represent the strategic conception of a rational decision maker, but the irrational “modus operandi” of an obscure international elite (established on the “unholy collusion” between the US military-industrial complex and the anti-Semitic Saudi-Zionist alliance) that determines the political direction of the West, through the manipulation of its technocratic leaders, with the aim to preserve privileges that are against the global prosperity, freedom, stability and peace.
The dynamic recovery of the Russian Federation, which, according to the last leader of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, may conclude in the establishment of a union of the former Soviet states, in the former borders, with the same members and on the basis of free will, poses a serious threat to the perpetuation of those privileges.
It is not surprising, therefore, that the core of the contemporary Western political and geopolitical worldview is the widespread Russophobic prejudice, according to which Putin’s Russia is an enemy of the European system of values and the Western civilization. Could it be right? The necessity for a deeper understanding of both the Russian foreign policy and the strategic culture in general is more timely than ever.
In order to draw a definite conclusion, we need to acknowledge and examine the fundamental priorities of the Russian foreign policy and strategy. In accordance with the Foreign Policy Concept Of The Russian Federation and the Russian National Security Strategy, the key priorities set by the Russian leadership, within the framework of an integrated strategic planning, are indicatively the following:
1. Russia’s contribution to the development of a positive, well-balanced and unifying international agenda, by relying on substantial resources in all areas of human activity and pursuing a foreign policy that actively seeks to develop relations with the leading states, international organizations and associations in various parts of the world.
2. The consolidation of the Russian Federation’s status as a leading world power, whose actions are aimed at maintaining strategic stability and mutually beneficial partnerships in a polycentric world.
3. The further promotion of the efforts to strengthen international peace and ensure global security and stability with a view to establishing a fair and democratic international system that addresses international issues on the basis of collective decision-making, the rule of International Law, as well as equal, partnership relations among states.
4. The implementation of a military policy through strategic deterrence and prevention of armed conflicts, and the improvement of both the state’s military organization and the forms and methods for deploying the Russian Federation Armed Forces. The development of various measures, intended to prevent the use of armed force against Russia and to protect its sovereignty and territorial integrity, is also included.
5. In addition, Russia views combating international terrorism as an essential government task and a key priority for international security.
Consequently, the Russian leadership aims at the creation of a broad international counter-terrorist coalition, with a solid legal foundation, committed to preventing terrorism and extremism and countering the spread of radical ideas. In that context, Russia:
• believes that the struggle against terrorism will not be effective, unless the sources of terrorist financing are eliminated,
• supports the efforts undertaken within multilateral structures to identify states, individuals and legal entities with economic ties to terrorist organizations, and
• seeks to block financing channels used by terrorists.
In the light of the above priorities, the President of the Russian Federation shared his views about the rules of the new international game, in a historical speech (ignored by the Western media) at the Valdai Discussion Club in Sochi (2016):
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 sandcastle. 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. 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 want a 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.
The message of the Russian President was clear and leaves no room for misinterpretations. He is the one who knows better than anyone that Russia is called upon to face the threat upon her existence, once again in the course of her long history. And this threat could be prevented not only in terms of strategic deterrence, but also in terms of an intellectual regeneration, based on a brand new spiritual, geophilosophical and geocultural worldview, part of which would be the radical overhaul of the theoretical framework, on the basis of which international relations and conflicts are interpreted and analyzed.
In what extent was Samuel Huntington right, when he was considering the clash of civilizations as a fundamental controversy between the Western and the Islamic cultures? Could we be dealing with the triggering of a more significant clash, which must be detected and analyzed, in terms of a deeper geopolitical, geopsychological and geotheological background? Our opinion is that the core of this clash must be identified in the controversy between two diametrically opposed worldviews, which led to the fundamental division of Christianity:
• on the one hand the western Neo-Liberal, Neo-Conservative and Post-Modern zero-sum worldview – shaped by the unholy mixture of Western Christianity (mainly protestant and catholic), Zionism and radical Islamism – which has affected the secular mentality of the Western world and defined the political direction and identity of the Western powers, and
• on the other hand, the Christian Orthodox mentality – the spiritual and intellectual core of the Russian culture, philosophy and psychological background – which is the substantial principle for the establishment of a fair and democratic international system.
It’s high time we asked ourselves as humankind: Are there any chances of building a new world order that will ensure the international peace, justice, stability and security?
We strongly believe that there are, as long as the American leadership comes to terms with the idea that the rules of the game have changed, by recognizing that it won’t catch up with the developments related to the emerging post-western order, if it persists in the irrational mentality of unilateral actions, in the circumvention of the International Law and the cynical manipulation of Human Rights. If we fail to meet our expectations, the gradual collapse of the US militaristic empire and the transition of the world to the post-western order will bring about the risk of escalating regional conflicts, which will eventually lead to a new world war.