These days Russia looks very strong and victorious, and the led by USA West looks weak and even funny. But the truth is some different. Russia really has some advantage, but not in general power. It has advantage in the trend. Russia goes up, the West goes down. The Ukraine victory of Putin is a consequence of these contrary evolutions of the two sides. It is like a first victory of the new rising power against the old – that is waning.
The pure facts at the moment are not in favor of Russia. It is just 8th as a size world economy. The economy of United States is about 5 times bigger. The economy of the US ally – European Union is also 5 times bigger than the Russian one. So combined, USA and EU – as major opponents of Putin, have about 10 times bigger economic power.
In military aspect Russia is some better. It is still the second world military power after USA. Anyway Russia is not the military giant that used to be USSR. Even now, this second place is due to nuclear arsenal that in fact is unusable in a local or “imperialist” war. This weapon is a guarantee for your own security, but cannot be used in a real small war. For instance – for Russia it would be ridiculous to occupy Crimea by attacking it before that with nuclear weapons.
In conventional forces Russia is much weaker. In fact it no longer produces some of its own armaments. It buys from the West, and even now a negotiation on buying French ships is on the way.
So how it happened that Putin has made all western leaders look foolishly?
The answer of this question is in the weakness of the West. It is not Russia strong. The West is becoming weaker. A devolution is happening in western societies that is eroding their ability to resist. The West looks much like the later Roman Empire. Still rich and even powerful in military area, but unable to resist, or may be – not eager to resist.
If you look at NATO, you will see… nothing. NATO does not exist. It is an illusion, a fiction. All NATO armies are drastically cut compared to their size in 80s. It was funny that disarmament was a condition of joining to NATO for some of the new members. For instance, when Bulgaria was to join NATO, USA placed a condition to liquidate the most advanced high-tech weapon – the short and mid-range missiles. Can you imagine that? You are contracting a new ally and you are placing a condition for him to become weaker… :) Usually the enemies are to be made weaker, not the allies.
But this is just a small instance of the western devolution and the change of values. In fact not only in new NATO-members, but also in old ones there happened a man and technics cut. So in fact NATO now is a treaty of toothless countries, each one relying on the rest (again toothless) to guarantee its security. In fact in NATO there are only 4 real powers. USA is strong in conventional and nuclear weapons. France and UK are strong only in nuclear weapons. And Turkey is strong only in conventional weapons. But as we said, nuclear power is just a self-protection, so the only having any importance forces in NATO are USA and Turkey. But Turkey is engaged in long term guerilla war with kurds and in addition is becoming too Islamized and even - anti-Israel power. So in fact at least at the moment, it is not a power you can rely on. So the only real power in NATO is USA. But after Iraq and Afghanistan adventures, the country is exhausted and financially destabilized. So the pure fact is there is no real NATO. It can hardly guarantee even the security of member-states. In fact even this security is an illusion. So what remains for other countries like Ukraine?
If you look at the closest to Ukraine NATO-members, you will see a funny situation. All they have armies smaller and worse armed even than the Ukrainian army. Romania and Bulgaria have symbolic armies. Poland has some army, but lacks any preparedness for fact reaction and operations abroad. So in fact NATO physically lacks any possibility to react.
So after we saw the military devolution of the West, it becomes clear why Putin achieved so easy victory. In fact Putin does not need be a military giant like USSR to occupy Crimea. He just needs to be stronger that Ukraine itself. And as this is so (in fact even the Ukrainian army cannot fight Russians, just because a big share of it is made of Russians), there are no problems to go into Crimea.
Do you see what I meant in the beginning? One is in a decay, the other is in a rise. So such results happen.
But more important is something else – they will continue to happen in future. Because West is constantly devoluting, while Russia is on the right way.
Let’s look at the gays and gay marriages. This problem looks not very important. But it is a symptom of a larger trend. On the West the gay rights are seen as a major issue. They are involved in human rights and many much more important issues are repressed and crushed, or at least are not enough addressed, due to the general purpose of protecting gay rights.
But in fact gay rights are not so important issue. Proclaiming such an extreme liberalism in so fast manner is a risky experiment for the society. The risk of eroding the millennia established model of family, just to guarantee something that someone has declared “important” and “a human right”, is in fact not acceptable. We should not be so hurrying in this.
The society needs some ground and stability. It can be reformed, but not any reform is good. It is no the gay marriage the problem that makes the West weak. The gay marriage is just a well and easy understood example of the processes that happen in the west and make it weak. There are many other processes. The society is changing, and obviously – changing not in the direction making it stronger. So may be Putin’s advance is a good moment to look at ourselves and revalue our behavior.
Another example of weakening the society is implementing the so called “multicultural model”. This is an illusion that may or may not work. For millennia there existed dominated by one nation countries or multi-national empires, dominated by one nation or one ideology. And this worked. Yes it was called “assimilation”, but it worked. The current model of mechanically merging incompatible people in a big jumble, called “multicultural society”, leads to unstable society. The divide lines do not disappear. They are just being moved inside the society, while before they were between nations and their states. If we talk simpler – Muslims in London does not become Englishmen. The remain Muslims and create their Muslim society inside the English one. In the previous model they were simply assimilated and have become Englishmen.
Obviously the multicultural model is a very risky experiment and on it at stake is the society as a whole.
In Russia there is no multicultural society. Russia is multi-cultural empire, but of the old and proven historically model – there is a dominating ideology, religion and doctrine. The nations remain within the empire, but this national divide has a secondary influence. Generally all Russian citizens are following the imperial doctrine, based on Russian culture, language and on Eastern-Orthodox Christianity.
Even in economy, where we still look strong, there are fundamental problems. The so called “social welfare state” ruined the economy and led to moving the real production abroad. The absolute priority of social security over the hard-working and economic efficiency is leading to an economy where almost no one produces something real. Most people are engaged in non-productive services or government jobs. Almost all of the real production is in China. We have no workers, we have just consumers. More and more the main production of the economy is the printed money. Money that someone still accepts in exchange for real goods.
So, do I need more examples? Or these 4 obvious ones are enough to understand the general direction the Western society is following. Gay marriage, extreme social security, multi-culturalism and a total disarmament of the army – all these are symptoms of something. Something that if understood correctly can lead to a change in the thinking. If not understood, only the surprise of Russian rise will remain. And not only Russian. The West is retreating almost everywhere – in economy, in moral values, in culture, in science…
It is not Russia becoming too strong. It is the West going down, while serving deeply mistaken priorities. And Ukraine is just the beginning of the visible part of this fall. We have much more to see in the interesting times we live in…
March 22nd 2014