Sunday, May 21, 2017

‘Russia is on the Brink of Territorial Disintegration,’ Sotnik Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, May 21 – Many people are placing their faith in the rise of a Russian civil society to change the direction of the country and prevent its disintegration, Aleksandr Sotnik says. But that faith is misplaced: Russian society has been “killed” over the last two decades by propaganda and an imperial narcotic and simply can’t recover in time to prevent the collapse.

            Expecting any group of people to suddenly overcome what Russians have been subjected to, the Moscow commentator says, is absurd: Such things simply don’t happen “in life or in politics” (

            Given that, Sotnik says, people must first “recognize that Russia stands on the brink of territorial disintegration. On some of its territories, the European type of development predominates, and [genuine] political life will appear, in a very stormy and diverse way, but it will appear.”

            Elsewhere he continues, “bandits” will triumph and retain or gain power.  “Some territories will pass to China.  For example, what will become with Kaliningrad? It will become Koenigsberg. And what will become of the North Caucasus? It will fall off.” What Russians have an interest in is preventing any “bloody new wars.”

            Unfortunately, Sotnik says, “a dead society … is not up to this. On each of the newly formed territories their own societies will be formed and will move along their own course, taking the national character and geopolitical and natural resources into account” just as the former Soviet union republics have done.

            “We see,” he continues, “that in many regions a process of low-level horizontal self-organization of the population is taking place. Might it be the case that this will become some kind of defense on the one hand from the ambitions of politicians who dream of occupying Putin’s place and from a bloody Yugoslav-style disintegration, on the other.”

            “We will leave a ruin to our children. They will curse us for our incompetence and egotism and for our political drunkenness and immorality. We ourselves will pay for this insane banquet” for as much time is left to us. “But the lion’s share of the political and historical accounts will come down on our children.”

            They will have to start to arrange things anew, and one can only hope, Sotnik says, that they will do so without turning to violence. 

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