Staunton, April 11 – Valery Solovey, an MGIMO professor and commentator, says on his Facebook page (facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=2056077931329249&id=100007811864378) that in this week’s rapidly changing environment, the five most important messages Russian propaganda is delivering are the following:
1. The West has unleashed economic war against Russia and Russia will respond by moving toward a mobilization economy.
2. The West supports terrorists in Syria and provokes and exacerbates military tensions on Russia’s borders. Russia must intensively prepare a military response.
3. This prewar situation requires the patriotic unification of the nation. Ideological vacillations and the political opposition are becoming treason to the Motherland.
4. The West is cowardly, morally dissolute, and psychologically weak. In a critical situation, it will retreat in the face of our toughness and of the first-class Russian military machine.
5. They have lied to us about nuclear war. British scholars have shown that it will not lead to the end of humanity and that in it a winning side is possible.
To the extent that Solovey has summarized the Kremlin’s current messages, the world is far closer to war than anyone could have thought possible only weeks ago. And it has only become more so because neither the top leaders of the Russian Federation nor those in the United States have direct experience with war.
As a result, each side is more likely to rush up to the brink for various reasons foreign and domestic and be unwilling to back down lest it appear weak, a recipe for disaster if neither Vladimir Putin nor Donald Trump understands just how easily a conflict could get out of hand and how truly horrific a nuclear war would be.
Despite what the Kremlin is messaging and despite what some may be inclined to believe, there will not be any winners in a nuclear war, only those who have died and those who are yet to.