Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Putin Supporters Defend North Korea for Same Reason They Defend Stalin, Roshchin Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, June 19 – The reason that the most enthusiastic supporters of Vladimir Putin back the horrific actions of North Korea’s dictator is the same reason why they defend Stalin against any criticism: a deification of the state and a belief that they must support anyone who acts in its name, however brutally and murderously, according to Aleksey Roshchin.

            As ever more evidence seeps out that the North Korean dictator is acting in a completely arbitrary and violent way toward his subordinates, the Moscow commentator argues, “state-thinking” Russians rush to his defense just as they do to Stalin’s because “’the symbol of their faith’ is the STATE” (ng.ru/blogs/alexroschin/pochemu-rossiya-zashchishchaet-kim-chen-yna-i-emu-podobnykh.php).

                Unlike anyone around or under it, the state for them is something great and important in and of itself, beyond the usual questions when it acts against “the pygmies” which in their mind is what everyone else is.  And they thus gain delight in speaking in support of “’the power of the state,’” which for them “replaces god” and is beyond questions of good and evil.

                But in their worshipful attitude toward the state, Roshchin says, they fall into a potentially dangerous “contradiction.”  On the one hand, they worship the state for its power over everyone and everything and gain a certain satisfaction from that.  But on the other, they are aware that the very power of such a state is ultimately a threat to themselves.

            The state-thinking people do everything they can to ignore this contradiction, the commentator continues; “but it breaks through into consciousness whenever there are examples of senseless cruelty by authoritarian rulers and their satraps be they of the dimes of Stalinism or those of North Korea at the present time.”

            Put in simplest terms, Roshchin says, the state-thinking Russians are terrified of the actions of the North Korean leader or of Stalin because such actions even as they elicit public support raise the question in their minds: “’If the good state commits such extrajudicial murders for laughable reasons, then why am I a state-thinking individual?’”

            But they cannot allow themselves to ask that question, he suggests, because if they were to do so, their entire world would collapse. And so they react with complete denial and enthusiastic support of the worst examples of authoritarian leaders: “’This cannot be because it can never be.’ Stalin was good and ‘killed only as needed,’ Kim Jong Il also is good and also kills ‘only as needed.’”

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