Monday, December 26, 2022

Orwell’s Newspeak Rules Best Guide to Understanding Putin, Kalnysh Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Dec. 26 -- Analysts and ordinary people wrack their brains to try to figure out what Putin means when what he says is so clearly at odds with what they have learned from other sources or from their own experience. But they don’t need to go through all that effort, Valery Kalnysh says. The rules George Orwell laid out in 1984 for newspeak are the key.

            The Kremlin leader is easy to understand once you do that, the Ukrainian journalist says. Everything he says means exactly the opposite. As in Orwellian newspeak, “’war is peace,’ ‘freedom is slavery,’ and ‘ignorance is strength’” (

            Kalnysh provides numerous examples of this pattern, something Russians, Ukrainians and people in the West should recognize as a key aspect of Putin’s modus operandi rather than assuming as all too many in each of these places do that he is really speaking the truth if only one  tries hard enough to understand what he is saying.

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