‘World-Wide Tenderness’ or Russian Way to Globalism


скачать скачать Автор: Katsura, Alexander V. - подписаться на статьи автора
Журнал: Number 1 / 2008 - подписаться на статьи журнала

Russian Union of Writers, Moscow

In his famous ‘Pushkin speech’ Fyodor Dostoevsky develops his idea about world-wide tenderness of the Russian spirit, and discusses in particular the point that Pushkin took away with him some great mystery. Nowadays, the literary critic and writer Yuri Karyakin takes the risk to suppose what was the clue to Pushkin's mystery: ‘Mystery is an idea of universal reconciliation. The universal reconciliation both with other peoples and inside yourself’. It is quite obvious that such ideas become of great importance in the age of globalization.

However, one cannot see that in Russia such a simple formula has become a moral and political postulate. One would think that nowadays, when the world is rapidly transforming into some complex unity, we should rely on the above mentioned important trait of our character and culture. But on the contrary, we make more and more mistakes – those of separateness, lies, empty promises, exasperation, distrust to the world, combined in a strange way with impudent pseudo-Eurasian appetites.

One need not prove that the current global processes are still closely connected with the reality of geopolitics, with military confrontation of countries and peoples. What role does Russia play and can play here having great spaces within Eurasia?

However, let us raise a more concrete geopolitical question: how many countries deliberately or instinctively strive for world domination? How many did in the past?

There are quite a few such contenders, ‘global players’, one may only add to the USA and Russia (the former Soviet Union) China that will gain strength rather soon – it is a matter of some years. In addition, the attempts of the Islamic World to create something like Panislamic Empire may attract our attention. But this is not relevant to the united Europe, all the more so with respect to Germany and Japan that fell away long ago as the defeated party in the Second World War. As essential constituents they are integrated into Western system – economic, political and military one. The last to have lost the great war (in its ‘cold’ variant) was Russia. Has it gone away? The ‘Civilized Occident’ would most like to think so. Is it not high time to comb this troublemaker, this shaggy recalcitrant country, to dress it up and show its honorable, but rather humble place in the range of other civilized (meaning clamped) countries? However, to the great disappointment of the West this has not yet become a real fact.

What will happen in the nearest future is not easy to predict unambiguously. Of course, one can imagine a bunch of scenarios. Nevertheless, the task of the paper is not to write scripts which are quite numerous in literature, but rather to search for the deep logic of the happening events.

Among all other we should reanalyze the geopolitical truth (or only a hypothesis?) formed a hundred years ago by the British scientist Helford Makinder about the key role of ‘Heartland’(‘Heart of the Earth’), i.e. of the Eurasian tension bar fr om Manchuria to the Black Sea. In this connection it is important to remember the lessons of World Wars, Drang nach Osten (aggressive Hitler's plans), the results and prospects of nowadays still unfinished Afghan War (in the wide sense – of the strategic problem of whole Central Asia and the Near East).

Speaking about Russian military expansion of the past centuries it cannot be separated from the peculiar Russian Messianism, originating from Judeo-Christian spiritual sphere, contradictorily inspired by love and pressure, that was also the source of energy for Catholics during the Crusades and the Catholics of the Conquistadors' times and those Protestant pilgrims who slowly populated the spaces of North America.

It is essential to understand anew, why the communist-Nazi union of the end of the 1930s was unable to be solid. ‘Kind allies’ had only time to cut out and divide Poland. By the way, Stalin behaved in a more cunning ‘oriental’ way: the Soviet troops were ordered to enter Poland only after Hitler had completely smashed the regular Polish army within two weeks. The ‘fatal forties’ would turned out to be striking and crucial, when two medieval dogs grappled, weakening each other and preparing victory of western democracies, that meant the return of history to its proper place.

The subsequent events raised a serious question: what is more effective in the state and economic building – freedom or obedience? The discussion on the question makes us remember a marvelous impressive and precise comparison of American and Russian ways, given by Alexis de Tokwil as early as in 1835 (he predicted a bipolar world in his forecast).

It is extremely interesting to remember and compare with the present days what Engels wrote about Russia's foreign policy in the late 19th century. In this connection it would be interesting to discuss a strange dual role and a sad destiny of Marx's theory. It is not accidental that Ortega-i-Gasset in 1929 called communism and fascism the false dawns of humankind. As regards Russian Marxism he directly called it ‘a masking skin thrown over the voracious imperial appetite of Russia’. But, was it not that borrowed (and much perverted) ‘Marxism’, which declared its main goal the freedom of the working masses of the world? What a beautiful legend for conquering the world. Do not similar legends (re-made into some ‘democracy language’) hide in the present processes of globalization, wh ere Russia does not play the key role any more?