What is this infamous Russian Nashism?
Like the sound of the name implies, it is essentially identical – if not totally identical – to national socialism (i.e. what is called fascism) of the German Third Reich in the 1930s and 40s.
I do not see any difference between the NSDAP (National Socialist German Workers Party) brownshirts and the Russian Nashis!
And this is not just my personal feeling. It is a calculated evaluation of that movement, one that is not mine alone, by any means.
The Nashi youth movement and other similar movements (e.g. Nochnoi Dozor [“The Night Patrol”] in Estonia, initiated by Klenski, Lebedev et al) are
3) embracing Social Darwinism (and yet, oddly enough, commingled with Orthodox religiousness).
In this sense, it is pure national socialism!
If you include Russia’s superpower and neo-imperialist policies which encourage and foster the expansionism of Russian economic monopolies in the economic sphere, while intertwined with political ambition – this is indeed the rebirth of fascism.
Nashi is a youth movement supported by the Kremlin and Putin’s United Russia. It attempts to mobilize people on a wave of great-power patriotism. The blame for all of Russia’s troubles lies with the non-Russian segments of the Russian Federation’s population (i.e. Chechens, Tatars, Maris, etc.) or – even more so – the peoples of the so-called “near abroad;” those who have broken away from the former Soviet Empire: Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians, Ukrainians, Belarusans, Moldavians, Georgians, etc.
The former Warsaw Pact nations must be regarded as hostile elements, since they have now “traitorously gone over” to the Western side.
These countries and peoples represent the first and second circles of Russia’s near-abroad concept and policies as well as its neo-imperialist ambitions, with total disregard for whether any of them have or have not become integrated into Western structures such as the European Union, NATO, etc.
Nashism is essentially a New Russia or Young Russia movement – it has the potential for 100% support within Russia. The Kremlin knows this, and is trying to support this movement while keeping it under its own control. Their interests and involvement is mutual, which makes this movement PARTICULARLY DANGEROUS.
During recent events – the moving of the Bronze Soldier in Tallinn, Estonia – the Kremlin stood clearly and vigorously on the side of the Nashis! THIS IS A SIGN! The official Kremlin did not distance itself from the Nashis for the sake of good relations with the West or membership in WTO. No! It used them to THREATEN the West! (By the way, Yeltsin’s Russia behaved in the opposite manner.)
If the West does not react right away, or gives in, Russia will feel victorious. Realpolitik power is all that matters to Russia – nothing else. This same psychology [sic!] characterized the German Third Reich in the 1930s and 40s. International agreements count for nothing – rather, they are a necessary cover on the way to the implementation of imperialist policies.
Russia has now meshed its strategic and tactical activities; linked its political, economic and military (in its modern form: cyberwar) ambitions. What they are doing today (with Estonia as an example) is acquiring a feel for Western strength and preparedness before potentially taking further, more decisive steps.
If the West has not realized what is happening by now, it has ALREADY lost the battle (if not the entire war). In that case, it is already too late for countermeasures – which MUST NOT include concessions, attempts to “buy” Russia (e.g. by admitting it to the WTO, etc.), or relinquishing territories.
Naturally, Russia is making every effort at good relations with Iran, since it can use Iran to establish a covert threat against the U.S., should it become necessary. Just like it can use Estonia, Poland, and other Eastern European countries to overtly or covertly threaten the European Union.
To demonstrate its power over Iran, Russia will occasionally restrict deliveries and make some “pro-Western” statements. But let’s be clear – these statements are directed primarily to Iran, to ensure that it will remain Russia’s obedient partner (or else Russia will halt its deliveries and Iran will suffer a total blockade.)
The Nashism emerging against this backdrop will shape the face of tomorrow’s Russia.
Why does Nashism have a potential for 100% support?
Because it plays on all the same feelings, ambitions and psychology that Russian imperialism has relied on throughout the ages, starting from the rise and expansion of Muscovy during the reign of Ivan IV. These are the same emotions that helped Ivan Grozny (Ivan the Terrible), Peter I, Catherine the Great, Lenin, Stalin, and now Putin achieve their ambitions.
What has laid the foundation for these feelings:
1) Sermonizing about the how Russians are a chosen people with a mission to save the world;
2) Reliance on Russian great-power ambitions: i.e. the notion that a state is truly genuine and a nation truly strong only if it is capable of defeating and assimilating those around it;
3) The accompanying hatred of everything foreign, everything non-Russian (the Russian Black Hundredists movement has been active for centuries, only its external form has changed);
4) Reliance on some so-called redemptive ideology: Russian Orthodoxy or communism or now, an unusual combination of these two;
5) A particularly deep hatred of everything Western or Western-oriented, as the opposite of Holy Russia and Russianness. This is the mental picture of: The West = Satan; Russia = The Redeemer.
These feelings also must inevitably generate the feeling of offense: i.e. the West has taken away our empire and now wants to “take away” Russia as well, by ripping pieces (such as Estonia and the other Baltic states) out of the empire. The West is oppressing true faith (Orthodoxy). The West is ready, at any moment, to strike Russia with a military attack; why else would NATO have been created. For the Nashis, the European Union is an incomprehensible formation, a weak adversary that must be “put in its place” with force. (For this reason, the European Union’s strong support for Estonia was a real shock for the Nashis. It would be naive to think that they will not plan some kind of revenge.)
Today, Nashism is stronger in Russia and in the Russian population of its neighboring states than ever before. Most of the Russians living in Estonia, the other Baltic states, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, etc., are waiting for the rebirth of the New Russian Empire. Obviously.
My MAIN QUESTION is: has the West learned that political deals such as those concluded at Munich (with Germany), Tehran, Yalta, Potsdam (with the Soviet Union pro Russia) ARE WORTHLESS in the long run?
The two primary adversaries and dangers currently faced by the West are: 1) Russian imperialism (with nuclear weapons), and 2) Islamic terrorism (to date, without nuclear weapons).
The first of these represents the greater danger to Europe, since the U.S. is able to control (indeed, with serious losses and temporary setbacks) the other to some extent. Russia is contributing, of course, to the friction between Europe and the U.S.. Europe does not want to attract the full brunt of Islamic terrorism, and the U.S. must understand this instead of criticizing Europe.
But Russia is a common danger for both Europe and the U.S. (although I am most certainly not diminishing the fight against Islamic terrorism). Russia is now unified once more (thus being different from the Islamic world). I believe that Western countries should be aware of what is happening. Russia will not let itself be bought with WTO membership or anything else – this is just a vehicle for the further realization of Russian ambitions. The West would be foolish to believe that Russia can be controlled – history has proven to us 100 times that this CAN NOT succeed. It would be the same as someone having tried to control Germany’s Third Reich. Ridiculous!
Only an adequate, powerful response will do: Western solidarity; clear and vigorous actions; refusal to yield on strategic AS WELL AS tactical issues.
The (economic, political and military) defense of the Baltic states and Poland will certainly become a touchstone for the West. Russia has already presented its challenge (Does it really have to do this with weapons before the West realizes WHAT today’s Russia is saying, what signals it is giving out?!).
These are my thoughts, my questions; out there for discussion.
A letter from a friend in Estonia: (22)