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The American Interest (USA): how will Russia win in the "hybrid war"
Material posted: Publication date: 09-02-2019
A hypothetical look at "the thought process of members of the Kremlin elite" during the "anti-West" presented the American public a former US state Department employee who worked including in the Department of Georgia (2007-09), but a lot of posts under. Therefore, probably, decided in retirement to realize themselves in journalism — the extent of their "thought process".

Against the background of Russia's preparations for a long period of tension in relations with the United States — and more broadly, with the West — there are such questions: how Russians assess the formation of this confrontation? What can be their long-term strategy? And how they represent a variant of the interchange that an expert from the Carnegie center Dmitry Trenin called "hybrid war"? Ultimately, the Russian noticed the onset of this period before us: a commemorative Putin's speech at the Munich security conference in 2007, allowed us to obtain an idea of the mood of Moscow long before the outbreak of the 2014 crisis in Ukraine. Russia does not accidentally come into conflict with the West, and the Kremlin has given no indication that he was preparing to admit defeat. Probably, Russian leaders have paid some attention to the question of how a country can emerge victorious from this situation.

My thoughts on this subject took the form of an imaginary memo directed to Yuri Ushakov, foreign policy adviser of President Putin, one of his senior subordinates. It is not intended to represent any existing policy of the Russian leadership. Rather it is an attempt to imagine the thought processes of the representatives of the Russian ruling circles at the time when they reflect on geopolitical trajectory in the period of existence of huge potential and very serious danger.

* * *

Mr Yuriy!

As You prepare for the meetings scheduled for next week, I would like to share some thoughts and ideas of experts in my Department regarding the current international situation and the challenges we will face in the coming decades.

On paper, the situation is not very encouraging. The United States, NATO, the European Union, as well as all the other princes and their minions are determined against us and try by all means to prevent Russia to get up off his knees and to resume her rightful place as a great power and an independent power centre in a multipolar world. Many observers (including the defeatists in our own country) like to emphasize the fact that by any measure — population, military power, economic power and soft power — we are in a very disadvantageous position.

However, as You well know, such a simplistic accounting view of the balance of forces does not give a clear picture of the decisive power of Russia, nor about the critical weaknesses of the notorious Enemy, so I think that makes sense from the beginning to list them.

First of all, Russians unanimously to reject the low status that the West is trying to secure for us since 1991. We are a great nation with a glorious tradition and a world-class culture, we will never put up with playing second fiddle in some United States-led the band (since we're talking about American leadership, a more appropriate analogy, perhaps, would be the expression "vaudeville ensemble"). All of their political, economic and military pressure is not able to affect our General commitment, seeks to reject the dictates of Washington.

The pain experienced in 1991 humiliation over time, not weakened. In 1985, the ratio of forces in the world decisively and definitively (as it seemed) shifted in favor of the socialist camp, however, just six years from its former greatness were in ruins. It's one thing to lose the cold war so Nations like Germany or France with their rich history, impressive military traditions and great cultural achievements. Even the British would be acceptable; they are, of course, the Anglo-Saxons, but, at least, the real — and not the surrogate, the Anglo-Saxons across the ocean. But to lose the cold war nation cowboys nation, which has never had writers of the calibre of Dostoevsky, or composer, is equal to the Tchaikovsky, nation, which, instead, has filled the whole world with his tasteless is Hollywood and pop culture third grade — to lose such a nation was an incredible shame. It's like Rome, defeated the barbarians. The Russians will not soon forget it — and will not soon forgive.

In addition, unlike our opponents, Russian — planners, accustomed to a promising approach; we are also a nation of chess players, and we all instinctively think several moves ahead. Having started about 15 years ago, when it became clear that the imperialists will not allow Russia to take its rightful place under the sun, our leadership has set in motion several processes: it is about reforms and the restoration of our armed forces, the nationalization of elites, the strategic use of our hydrocarbon resources, but also about purposeful and consistent weakening of anti-Russian regimes in the post-Soviet space. All this has allowed us to prepare well for 2014, when West threw a feigned cooperation with Russia and instead began to conduct openly hostile policy.

People in the West did not notice not only of our willingness but also of our resistance. A nation that could withstand the full power of the Wehrmacht, will not be broken pathetic patchwork of Western sanctions — especially taking into account the skills and professionalism of the members of our macroeconomic team.

And finally, our centralized decision-making process gives us a huge tactical advantage in speed. We were able to liberate the Crimea before clumsy and tight thinks the West could understand what really is going on. We are in a good position to take advantage of our benefits as soon as the appropriate kind of opportunities will be provided to us in the coming decades.

Unlike our unity, the operational speed and unwavering determination to achieve victory, the people of the West represent a sad picture. Although they treat us with great hostility, their disunity — national, ideological, political and even personal — does not allow them to influence Russia from a position of superiority in wealth and power. With a few minor exceptions such as the Baltic States, the conflict is existential, as in our case. I agree with the fact that he could not predict the rigidity or persistence of Western sanctions after 2014. Nevertheless, I am confident that we will be able to last longer than the imperialists, and that they themselves are tired of the confrontation, or will be confused long before the moment when will be able to force us to accept their view of Russia as on the state third grade.

I do not intend to give instructions, — You have so much direct experience with the Americans — about the state of Affairs with our archrivals. However, allow me to introduce a number of comments in relation to wider geopolitical picture.

Although I to some extent pleased with the defeated Clinton in the election in America in 2016, I will never, if You remember, especially showed no enthusiasm for trump. Any President trying to "make America great again" with massive arms build-up and increase of extraction of hydrocarbons, may not be when viewed from our point of view, definitely good for us.

However, as we all recognize, pompous and combative nature of the trump creates favourable in terms of allowing her to drive wedges between our rivals. In particular, the deep antagonism between trump and representatives of the European elites opens up the prospect for radical and final transatlantic separation. NATO has always been grotesque, unnatural Alliance, in which a group of cultured Nations allows you to lead a country brash obscurantists. In fact, it's only a matter of time and sooner or later the people of Western Europe recognise that their true interests are connected to have common cause with the related European civilization with Russia.
However, I would caution against excessive optimism on this score. Any transatlantic tensions in the world will not bring us anything especially good if, in the end, it will not lead to real collapse of NATO. If Washington can or through psychological pressure or using threats to force the Europeans to take more seriously its own security, Russia may be in a more difficult position than before. I see a causal relationship in that the cooperation in the field of security has never been so tight and full between Washington and such traditionally anti-Russian countries such as Poland, Romania and the Baltic States, as well as the puppet Pro-American regimes in Ukraine and Georgia.

In psychological terms, it is gratifying to see the confidence of a significant part of the American elite that we have the opportunity to influence the outcome of elections, but our inept propagandists do not deserve the appreciation that they receive. If they are so talented, why are unable to prevent the expansion of NATO or the frightening rise of Western influence in the post-Soviet space in General? They thus lulled notorious Enemy, creating a sense of security until the moment when Russia was not against the wall, and then demonstrated awe-inspiring ability to influence the outcome of elections in Western countries? I think that it is not.

On the other hand, I hope that our intelligence agencies made appropriate conclusions from the incredible force of the impact "of the dossier Steele" (Steele dossier), which led to more strife and controversy than any childish crafts, created by our Agency for Internet research. If I may be allowed to make an extraordinary assumption, I will say this: we must ensure that in 2020 appeared comparable "indecent and unsubstantiated" dossier on every American presidential candidate. In fact, let there be many controversial dossiers on each candidate, it can be used to support the overall direction of our "active measures" in the period of posttrade, and also to the Americans were embroiled in their own political squabbles. If we will succeed, we will witness a fascinating show!

Of course, in this case, the negligent employees of our vaunted intelligence agencies must begin to think creatively instead of clumsy to continue operations, giving a reason for the West to impose additional sanctions. But You already know my opinion about this sensitive topic, so I will not waste time and effort.

Let me return to the issue of alliances. Any "balance sheet" assessing the conflict between Russia and the us matching the impressive potential of NATO with a modest capacity of our CSTO demonstrates the significant advantage of the imperialists. However, the NATO Alliance is a double-edged sword. The trend towards policy-making based on consensus with the lowest common denominator can lead to indecision and paralysis. A related disadvantage is the abstract focus on "status" or "health" of NATO, and not urgent tasks. Always funny to see how Westerners scurrying around trying to figure out "do they all of equal value," as if the General security is of the same opinion about climate change, progressive taxation or gay marriage! The audacity of our Crimean operation is absolutely beyond the comprehension of such people.

In contrast to their fossilized and hidebound of the Alliance, we have a) our freedom of action; b) a group of equally minded countries that, while not formal allies, nevertheless, looking at the world in much the same way as we do. China, North Korea, Iran and increasingly Turkey agree with us, of course, for their own specific reasons — regarding the injustices of the world order imposed by Washington. We don't need to coordinate with them all of the. We don't need to ensure that we all had common political structure, economic model and social policy. We just need to pull up, each country will do it my way and in accordance with their own schedule — tottering foundations that support the liberal world order, and, in the end, we will make sure that all of this hideous building will fall to the ground.

Today, Turkey is almost fully managed to leave the American camp, and it became one of the most important events of the last few years. Although clever Russian diplomacy played a role, the main reason was the objective reality itself. The fear of Soviet power was the only sticky substance that actually linked the Turkey and the Alliance, but these relations began to wane immediately after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Since Turkey and Russia have shown themselves to peers, the disgust of Turkey to the West and its frustrated liberal world order are almost as strong as ours. The Turks for centuries supported a set of people of the hero (Herrenvolk), and this occurred at a time when the Ottoman Empire stretched across three continents and crushing all in its path. The Turks chose for himself the role of leader in the post-Ottoman space, and they believe that only American envy and American hegemony does not allow Turkey to regain its "natural" status of a great power. Such a psychological background, when the Americans behaved rather unwisely, began in Iraq and Syria allies of the Kurds, deadly enemies the Turks, the fate of the Turkish-American Alliance have been resolved.

Again I want to say that you need to exercise caution. We're chess players and therefore should always think few steps ahead. As the Western orientation of Turkey did not survive the collapse of the Soviet Union, and our Union with Turkey will not survive the collapse of American hegemony, and it will happen when once again in the foreground will be the objective reality. And the reality is that the Turkish "near abroad" largely overlaps with ours, and neoottomanism claims of Ankara are almost diametrically opposed to Russian interests in the Balkans, the Caucasus, Crimea, Central Asia and the middle East. As soon as NATO falls apart, and the Americans back across the ocean, where they belong, we need to be ready to turn around 180 degrees and end the ambitions of Turkey in our backyard. Fortunately, the odious legacy of Ottoman rule, in fact, helps us to recover some lost ground in the Balkans, in Georgia and in the Arab world.

It should be borne in mind that our strategic partnership with China, too, is situational, and in its current form it will not continue after we send the liberal world order into the dustbin of history. As You know, I am not one of those fools who believe that China poses a greater threat to Russia than the United States. However, I quite annoyed by the fact that the Chinese seem to be quite happy that call on Russia to conduct all the heavy fighting and to take all the fire back in our common struggle against American unilateralism. China has managed to evade responsibility for their aggressive actions in the South China sea, while against Russia sanctions were imposed only for the return of what belongs to it by law, the Crimea and the Donbass. In fact, Washington beat us mercilessly, while the Chinese remain completely unpunished, which is further proof, as if we need it — the extreme hostility of America towards Russia.

At the same time, our geopolitical and economic weakness in the far East against the background of China is an objective fact, and in the near future the situation can be corrected. So do not tempt fate and rely on the eternal benevolence of China.

As soon as the Europeans will send the Americans to a known address, we must extend a hand of friendship and cooperation to the Germans, French and Italians (poles, Romanians and British is another story) in order to create the front of European civilization to protect themselves from threats to our common European home of the Turks and the Chinese. Although the departure of the Americans from Europe will not happen fast enough, I have absolutely no regrets that they remained in the far East, where they do not cause us much harm and perhaps at some point even become useful to us. It's hard to believe, but Americans may ultimately even be needed for something!

Although I am optimistic about the outcome of the current conflict with the West, and confident in our ability to insist on multilateral in the post-American world order, I would be accused of negligence if I didn't pay much attention to two serious problems.

First, in a metaphorical besieged fortress, where we are currently, our financial reserves will help us to survive the siege, while corruption can be compared to an army of rats, which gradually destroys our food supplies. In the existential struggle we are waging, Russia simply cannot afford to stand idly by as our precious resources are being destroyed in this way. Our current President demonstrates a wonderful discipline to strengthen our financial system, but I fear that his successors will not have his usual foresight and allow you to waste our vital resources as a result of myopic fiscal populism or outright theft.

Secondly, I have to admit a certain sense of frustration about how our natural protégé, the other States in the post — Soviet space, it seems, tend to distance themselves from Russia. I'm not talking about shameless betrayal of the Georgians and Ukrainians. Even Belarusians, Armenians and Tajiks, who hypocritically accept our generous assistance in the field of economy and security and are constantly asking to increase it, apparently, are deprived of fundamental human decency to at least provide rhetorical support for their selfless Russian benefactors in difficult time for Russia. Moreover, all our post-Soviet neighbors in varying degrees involved in conducting a conscious policy aimed at the falsification of our common history, minimizing the crucial role of Russia in bringing light of civilization, and also of the benefits of technology, education and prosperity in these earlier living in the dark regions.

However, I can't believe that such blatant ingratitude will continue indefinitely. Or blatant the local elite, seized power after the collapse of the Soviet Union, realize the errors of his short-sighted anti-Russian policy, either a new, more discerning generation, aware of the truth — in fact, we are talking about the imperative, which is associated with the convergence of their Nations with Russia. I remain convinced that somehow, perhaps through a certain number of feasible beliefs in certain cases, all the younger brothers to return to our Eurasian home. Together with our partners we will strike at the arrogant Americans and to end once and for all with their blood-soaked unilateral hegemony.

Our cause is just, we will win!

Kirk Bennett


Tags: assessment , Russia , USA

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