Home » General » West’s Putin Anger – the Case for a g Russia [opinion]

One only has to look at the current outpouring of hatred and righteous anger towards Russian President Vladmir Putin to realise that Putin is heading towards something defining, seminal.

From the looks of it, and especially given the way the West is obsessed with the Russian leader, what Putin is doing is good and inspirational to the world, especially lesser peoples, including Zimbabwe, that the West wants to keep under its heel.

For the record, Putin’s Russia was humbled by the break-up of the old Soviet Union in 1991, which was a Cold War victory for the West.

The end of the Cold War signalled the diminishing of Russian influence and the beginning of a unipolar world that is now dominated by the West, chiefly the United States of America.

Putin is on record as saying that the break-up of the old Soviet Union was a geopolitical mistake.

It could be more.

So, for years Russia was supposed to be content with the role of the pacified and broken while the coming on stage of former KGB spy Putin was at first not much of a problem with the West as he was seen as a liberal – which was seemingly confirmed by his choice of Western-educated Dmitry Meedev as his “heir apparent”. He has gone on to disappoint the West – not least by his macho man personality and the love for sport including judo and skiing, which make an image of a tough guy.

Over the years, he has been treated with mistrust which slowly has transformed into open hostility. The West vented part of this hostility through its media during the Sochi Winter Olympic Games earlier this year.

The Games were dismissed as anything from chaotic to an ego show by Putin, with some commentators even saying that the Games were to Putin what the 1936 Olympics were to Hitler. The intended effect of the association is obvious.

One may wonder why people would be so upset by a country hosting such Games.

A simple example: it is for the same reason why some Western quarters were opposed to Zimbabwe’s hosting of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation meeting last year and when a singer called Brian Adams performed in Zimbabwe this year, he was attacked for “legitimising” President Mugabe, whom the West loves to hate.

Now, following the Ukraine crisis – there is also the ongoing Syrian crisis – Western media have gone into overdrive with all sorts of propaganda against Russia.

It will be useful to collate some few gems expressed in the mainstream Western media over the past few weeks.

Washington Post’s David Ignatius says Putin “cunning and forceful” and capable of wearing “sheep’s clothing … (though) he remains very much the wolf underneath”.

Writing for the Politico Magazine Ola Cichowlas calls Putin “Vladmir the Great” (as in those emperors of yore) who has overseen Russia” reverting to some of the worst of Soviet-style politics, and the Stalin-like cult of personality around Vladimir Putin is the least of it.” Dictatorship is the logical culmination of Putinism, Cichowlas pontificates.

In a New York Times article “Confronting Putin’s Russia”, Michael A McFaul, who served for five years in the Obama administration as a special assistant to the president at the National Security Council and as ambassador to the Russian Federation, says Putinism is an evil concept in the mould of communism and fascism. He says Putinism is crude. “Mr Putin’s nationalism is fuelled primarily by a crude, neo-Soviet anti-Americanism.”

In the UK, the media has lavished on Prince Charles comparing Putin to Adolf Hitler.

Case for g Russia

There is a slew of anti-Putin propaganda in the global media today.

However, this present episode is teaching the world a couple of important things about world affairs and geopolitics at a time there is endless talk of “pivots” – and how a g Russia is not only inevitable but also desirable.

The immediate and primary thing in the latest US-Russia standoff relates to the control of EuropeCentral Asia in relation to power or energy resources.

Globally, the world is getting colder and hurtling towards an era of a renewed Cold War. The new confrontation between the West and the East is especially worrying to the former hence the desperation and righteous anger which has so far also yielded sanctions against Russia.

Only this will not conceivably deter Putin. As a matter of fact, the world is starting to raise its head to take notice and especially after Syria, progressives will no doubt take him even more seriously despite, and maybe because of, the negativity that the West is trying to lump on Putin.

Connected to this is the obvious diminished and diminishing power of the West. The West may still consider itself economic powerhouses but the rise of alternative powers like Russia, China, India and Brazil make for another centre of gravity, which does not make good news for Western hegemony.

Interestingly, Russia and China this week were involved in gas talks in a diplomatic boost for Putin.

China is set to overtake the US as the world’s biggest economy.

The rise of a powerful and even bullying Russia does not make good news for the West. Russia’s prowess, although unacknowledged so far – what would you expect – has been a good thing for the world which would have been needlessly thrown into war over Syria.

Various commentators have demonstrated how “Putin saved Obama” and the world by offering a peaceful solutions to Syria’s chemical weapons wrangle after Obama’s contrived “red line” on Syria.

Putin’s sobriety and maturity saved the world from a toxic war.

It is what the world needs.

Zimbabwe has also benefited from the prowess and rationality of Russia as well as China. In June 2008, Russia and China vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution to impose international sanctions on Zimbabwe which was being pushed chiefly by the US, Britain and France.

Zimbabwe could well have been another Libya – thanks to Meedev then, in the same manner Syria could by now have been the latest of victims of Western meddling were it not for Putin last September.

In the eyes of the West, he might be a judo playing autocrat, but a g Putin and a g Russia (and China et al) are what a saner world needs going forward.

Source : The Herald