Global Analysis from the European Perspective. Preparing for the world of tomorrow

A gaping chasm

“A great chasm has been set in place” between the collective West and Russia, a mutually unbridgeable chasm. President Vladimir Putin’s words addressed to Plenary session of the World Russian People’s Council (November 28, 2023) illustrate this chasm exceedingly well. In his speech President Putin said among others what follows:

Russia is fighting in Ukraine “not just for Russia’s freedom but for the freedom of the whole world”, against the dictatorship of one hegemon. In this struggle, Russia is blocking “the way of those who aspired to world domination and exceptionalism.” Most of the world understands it.

Russians make up a “large Russian nation, a triune of Russians, Belarusians and Ukrainians.”

Russia is “faced with the daunting task of developing vast areas from the Pacific to the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea.” To this end Russia needs to preserve and increase its population, which is a “goal for the coming decades and even generations ahead. This is the future of the Russian world, the millennium-old, eternal Russia.” This task can only be executed through large families that “become the norm, a way of life for all Russia’s peoples” because the “family is not just the foundation of the state and society, it is a spiritual phenomenon, a source of morality.” This daunting demographic challenge cannot be responded to “solely with money, social benefits, allowances, privileges, or dedicated programmes” because it is a “person’s points of reference in life matter more. Love, trust, and a solid moral foundation are what the family and the birth of a child are built on.” Which is also why

though “the Church is separate from the state […] the Church cannot be separated from society or from people.” Emphasis must be put on the “importance of the participation of representatives of all traditional Russian religions in the education and upbringing of our youth, and […] in the consolidation of spiritual, moral, and family values.”

Russia is a continuity and a total of “Ancient Rus, the Tsardom of Muscovy, the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and modern Russia.” 

A great chasm, indeed. Rather than inviting and promoting immigration, the Russian leader calls on his people to “be fruitful and multiply [and] populate the earth abundantly”; rather than promoting patch-work, or single-mother families, or same-sex marriages, the Russian leader encourages the revival of the traditional multi-child family; rather than promoting secularism, the Russian president stresses the importance of religion; rather than promoting cancel culture, Vladimir Putin holds in high regard historical continuity.

Of note are Vladimir Putin’s words heralding and lauding Russia as a freedom fighter for the whole world or at least its majority i.e. the countries that do not make up, roughly, the G7 mutual admiration society. These words are reminiscent of the roles that both the Soviet Union and imperial Russia played while liberating Europe from, respectively, Hitler’s and Napoleon’s yokes. Notable is also the description of Russians, Ukrainians and Belorussians as a triune large nation, words that act like a red rag to the Western bull(y).

Indeed, Russia is everything that the collective West is not, the collective West is everything that Russia is not. A deep chasm is gaping, an unbridgeable chasm, such that does not allow either of the opponents to even understand the opposing party. A civilizational rift.


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