The US’ attempt to ‘decolonize Russia’ will hit itself as a boomerang
Published: Jul 04, 2022 01:12 PM
Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

In Russian, the word "temnik" refers to when authorities covertly send out instructions on how the media should expose this or that story. As a result, an everyday reader is surrounded by multiple polyphonic messages painting this story with a monophonic color.

A vivid example of such tactics took place in 2018, when American newspapers began to spread a biased Sinophobic agenda prior to the White House unleashing its faithless anti-Chinese trade war.

Just now, I'm observing a similar Washington Temnik aimed at Moscow. With US sanctions having failed to disrupt the Russian economy - as I wrote in my GT column last month, entitled, "US tries to hit Russia with severe sanctions, but fails" - Uncle Sam summons another demon.

From April to June 2022, dozens of American media and netizens have simultaneously started to share the same narrative. It is called "the decolonization of Russia." Bloomberg, The Atlantic, various blogs, and think tanks are singing with a single voice: Russia is an Evil Empire oppressing ethnic minorities, and the only way to make it democratic is to dissolve the country within the internal borders of its regions, as the Soviet Union had been.

Eventually, on June 23 - simulating a natural public concern that the authorities have to react to - the US Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe held a conference with the unsurprisingly same title: "the decolonization of Russia."

At this point, I recall the Russian pro-Western liberal opposition repeating: "There is no evidence that Washington wants to dissolve Russia." No, no, definitely there isn't - except this Commission which is the official body of the US government.

Perhaps my opponent would reply that such a hostile US agenda is just retaliation to recent "Russian aggression" - a narrative the West constantly uses while invading Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, and other sovereign countries.

Okay, let's take the 1990s: after the Soviet Union collapsed, Russia was extremely sick and overwhelmingly pro-Western. The then-Russian minister of foreign affairs sought only a joint photo with the US Secretary of State instead of protecting our national interests.

Despite that, America still welcomed the possibility of further disintegration of Russia. In the mid-1990s, in Chechnya, a mountainous Russian region, separatists had gained power and unleashed a bloody war. Our people called them "Chechen gangs," but in fact, lots of them were nationless foreign terrorists linked to Al-Qaeda.

The US media referred to these slaughterers as "rebels" or "freedom fighters." Former and incumbent DC officials expressed their support and met their representatives. Moreover, the terrorists that acted in the Russian Caucasus mountains openly deployed their training and recreation camps in the Pankisi Gorge of neighboring Georgia, a country which was extremely pro-American at that time.

Of course, the real reason for such policy is not the US' concern about democracy - either in Russia, China, or any other pro-multilateral country - but its desire to maintain global dominance at any cost, including sucker punching.

Now, as its last hope, the US tries to mount its "decolonization of Russia" agenda. I don't know why the Russian policy advisors of Washington had chosen such an absurd strategy; unless the only info about Russia they have is the propaganda in their own media.

Similar to the US, Russia is a polyethnic and multireligious country from ocean to ocean, with various historical issues previously in acquiring its parts. Perhaps US politicians who have gotten used to the only example of state-building - their own - really think that other countries impose the same model: permanent wars of conquest, institutional racial discrimination, and genocide of ethnic minorities such as Indians during the most of national history.

Why do I waste my time opposing this ridiculous "decolonization of Russia" concept which is as bogus as their "Saddam chemical weapons" claims? The reason is that the possible dissolution of the US - the nuclear country with 200 million guns in its arms - can bring much more damage than even the Soviet Union collapse did. Because, as we see, all the American policy causes a boomerang effect.

Over the past two decades, the White House promised to destroy terrorism and build democracy in Afghanistan. Instead, after the American rule, this country was totally erased; in Washington itself, democracy fails, and domestic terrorism rises - remember the 2021 US Capitol storming.

In recent years, the US promised to destroy the Russian economy with sanctions - and now its own inflation, fuel crisis, and food shortages have reached historical highs.

Presently in the last few weeks, the US was promising to "decolonize Russia" - but now its own Texas is planning to hold a referendum of independence.

On the other hand, why does Russia stand for multilateralism and equality on the world stage? Because it has successfully imposed the same order on its own territory. 

Precisely, let's take the above-mentioned Chechnya: within modern Russia, it has its own military units, its own Muslim-based traditions, and the widest range of autonomy. Despite that, Chechen troops are a notable part of the Russian army and conduct anti-terroristic strikes for the Russian national interests.

So now you know why the US stands for its dominance in the world: on the outer stage, it just reflects its indoor "melting pot" model, which leads to the supremacy of a single - American - culture. And who is the real colonialist, thus - the answer is obvious.

The author is an adjunct professor at the Far Eastern Federal University in Vladivostok, Russia. opinion@globaltimes.com.cn