Staunton, May 15 – Only one leader of another former Soviet republic, Moldova’s Igor Dodon, joined Vladimir Putin for Moscow’s Victory Day parade, a development that “may not have been planned but that certainly should have been foreseen,” marking as it does the end of the post-Soviet era and its replacement by “’the Russian world,’” Vadim Dubnov says.
“Slowly and as the mathematicians say asymptotically … the post-Soviet era with its elite solidarity and devotion to Moscow is running out,” the Moscow commentator says in today’s Novaya gazeta. Moldova’s Dodon it would appear is “the last of those who suppose the past is important” for their future (novayagazeta.ru/articles/2017/05/15/72434-sindrom-dodona).
“Victory Day,” he says, “gave us in the person of Igor Dodon a symbol of the natural drying up of the past,” of the end of “the conception of the post-Soviet world” and its replacement by “’the Russian world,’” a concept that is not simply empty words but “a triumph of the Kremlin’s post-modernism.”
Under the terms of “the old post-Soviet model … Moscow’s role was passive” because everyone was still linked to the past. But, Dubin argues, “the doctrine of ‘the Russian world’ is on the contrary active and aggressive … it penetrates everything like radiation” and doesn’t rely on the past but on Moscow’s action and mobilization of large groups of people abroad.
“The new Russia,” he says, “can count on thousands of citizens,” people who may think they are “the third wave of emigration” but in fact are “sleeping agents” who can be mobilized by the Russian government and put in motion by it against those who offend Moscow or get in its way.
Moscow isn’t interested in victories: it is concerned about having a presence that it can use to take advantage of situations in many countries as they develop. And it gains a victory because those it targets, like the Democratic Party in the United States, see it as “a threat of planetary size.”
And that means this, Dubnov concludes. There has been a new definition of what is good and what is bad. “In general, you no longer will come to us for the parade: that means that we will come to you” not with tanks necessarily but with bikers and hackers who send a signal that Russia is still around and must still be reckoned with.