Sunday, April 15, 2012

Putin's Favorite and “American Apocalypse" Project

By Irina Severin

Russia's stake in the U.S. 2012 election

RON PAUL and his 'V for VLADIMIR' campaign

Last days before the Russian presidential election, Vladimir Putin, the only real Russian candidate for the presidency, had increasingly often blamed the U.S. of meddling in Russian internal affairs and warned against the dangers of foreign influence.  

Putin accuses the Russian protest leaders of being 'paid agents of the United States working to weaken Russia'. 

What is the explanation for Putin's obsession with foreign influence? Is this a  paranoia inherited from the Stalin times, or is it just a projection of Putin's constant meddling in the elections in other countries? 

Russian neighbors have a vast experience of Russian interference, which usually leads to political chaos and confusion. Russia is too weak to get the neighbors under control and too unattractive, which makes neighboring countries continue to lean to the West despite the enormous Moscow pressure.

Russians blame the U.S. for the collapse of the USSR, which Putin named 'the biggest catastrophe of the 20th century. America's 'triumphalism' of the Cold War winner' irritates Putin as he still sees Russia as an equal player to the U.S. in the bipolar world of the Soviet era.  

However, despite his imperial daydreamings, Russia remains the country with an underperforming economy, dependent on oil prices, a corrupt political regime, and suffering from losing control over its former East-European communist countries, which are either integrated or tend to integrate with the West.  

Despite the crisis, Russia's neighbors see the U.S. as a role model and protection from Russia's growing covert expansionismInstead of rebuilding the economy and modernizing the political system to become more attractive, Russia prefers to obsess with taking revenge on America. 

For Russia, the only hope to win someday competition with the U.S. and to regain its influence in the world is to make the U.S. weaker and less attractive.

Putin's internal "managed democracy" does not take much time to manage. High oil prices assure economic growth. Thus, warfare with the West, particularly with the U.S., is the main occupation for Putin.

New Reincarnation of the Russian Empire 

For Putin, the Soviet Union is one of the incarnations of the Russian Empire. The communist ideology was a helpful tool for consolidating not only the masses inside of the USSR but mobilizing the "useful idiots" worldwide, including the West. Now Russia is looking for a new ideology that can conquer the world.

 In 2009 Putin's party "Edinaya Rossiya" ("United Russia") declared that its official ideology is conservatism, which means rebuilding the former Russian Empire as the epitome of conservative values and recruiting supporters abroad among the conservatives; additionally, o the old leftist ties. 

In a time when Russia
 mobilizes all its resources to combat America for the U.S., Russia is far from being a priority. America would like to engage Russia in cooperation. 
But Putin's vindictiveness, combined with Russia's growing assertiveness abroad, makes the American attempts to reset relations with Russia doomed from the start.

Ron Paul's tailor-made ideology

Driven by revenge Putin does not want to accept the place the West is offering to Russia - to integrate with the West on Western terms, as a normal state with the precondition of democracy and a free market economy. Putin prefers to incorporate the West on his own conditions, changing the Western mindset and the world political landscape in Russia's favor.

Russia started to consolidate its influence in the West as it was in the 60-s when American Peace organizations were, in fact, Soviet fronts financed by the USSR. However, this time Russian allies are not the American left but the libertarian Ron Paul, whose views coincide with Putin's plan for America. 

Putin and his allies work hard to co-opt the Republican Party, some Democrats, and Independents to win the Presidential election for Ron Paul as he would be an ideal all-in-one solution for Putin's troubles. Ron Paul's Libertarian ideology ideally suits Russia. 

Libertarianism is an ideology created in the 60-s based on the philosophy of Russian emigree and dystopian writer Ayn Rand. In her view, selfishness is the primary virtue, and the capitalists are the heroes and a minority unfairly harassed with the taxations and regulations by the main enemy - the government. 

In her view, the dollar plays the sacral role as an organizing factor. The government and the social welfare should be abolished and the anarcho-capitalist rule established. Social Darwinism at home preached by Ayn Rand combined with the leftist isolationism abroad would ideally serve Russian interests as this would: Social Darwinism would destroy America from the inside, and Isolationism would wipe America off the political map.

Putin's "Democratisation of America" Project

In the summer of 2007, Putin declared that he intends to invest in the 'democratization' of the West the same amount of money as the West invests in the democratization of  Russia and post-Soviet countries. This amounts to about 60 million dollars per year. 

The program was announced just before the first Ron Paul's 5th November 2007 "Money Bomb" (Putin's contribution disguised as a people's multi-stream donation). Officially Putin's Democratisation of America project was launched in January 2008. The moment could be marked as the start of Putin's massive investment into the American election and the creation of the Tea Party as an influence tool.

However, in comparison with the U.S. programs, there is no public information on who gets Russian grants and for what, as well as how money gets to the beneficiaries. Everything is done in a conspiratorial way using different schemes, the same way Russia used to finance its meddling in the politics of the neighboring countries. 

So far, the process is in a stage of crystallization of the American Revolution vanguard ideology, intended to "attack the system" and consolidate Ron Paul's electorate base.

Ron Paul as Russia's Firm Ally

During all real and virtual Putin's confrontations with the U.S., be this Orange Revolution in Ukraine in 2004 or a brief war with Georgia in 2008, Putin always had a firm ally - Ron Paul.   His position always coincided with Putin's. 

He eagerly blamed Ukraine and Georgia for following the Russian suit and, at times, seemed to be even more hostile toward the American East-European allies than Putin himself.

In light of the latest mass protests in Russia, support for Ron Paul is not only a matter of gratitude for Putin but a way of his political survival. 

 Putin does not hide that he is afraid of the democratic revolution in Russia. And Ron Paul is the only candidate in the presidential race who can not only guarantee Putin's political future but considerably strengthen Putin's position both in Russia and in the world.

'Russia Today" and other Russian propaganda tools

Russian state-sponsored T.V. channel Russia Today (R.T.), launched in 2005 after his failure in Orange Revolution, actively promotes one candidate in the presidential race. Ron Paul gets the lion's share of the airtime and is presented in a cult style inherent to the Russian media. 

Hardly the openly mocking features on Santorum and Romney or Obama can be considered unbiased election coverage. But Russia Today even does not pretend to be objective. R.T.'s goal is to make fringe ideas and fringe candidates  American political mainstream, and R.T. does succeed in this so far.

Another big theme for R.T. is the anonymous and 'leaderless' movements – the Tea Party, the Occupy W.S. movement, WikiLeaks) and the Internet hackers' movement Anonymous, all of which act in amazing sync with Ron Paul. 
All work on destroying Ron Paul's opponents and creating the right grade of chaos to make Ron Paul look like an acceptable candidate. 

Despite the opposite views of the ultra-right Tea Party and ultra-left Occupy movement, both work as the primary Ron Paul resources. As Ron Paul's had said in a bizarre statement, he can 'bridge' them. 

The explanation is simple – behind both movements is Putin. Both movements are fringe and anti-establishment to radicalize the existing political division.

Ron Paul's Presidency as America's Self-demise

Russian experts see Ron Paul as a candidate not only able to reverse the U.S. progress but to critically diminish America's clout in the world. In fact, Ron Paul's Libertarian ideology perfectly matches Russia's goal, first voiced by Stalin and later picked up by Hruschov in 60-s: "to catch up with America and overcome it."  

As Russia cannot overcome America in an open competition, it can obstruct its development by supporting a zealous Libertarian, Ron Paul. Besides the obsession with the Libertarian utopia Ron Paul also does not believe in evolutionBeing a creationist means that any progress for him is a deterioration from the ideal, primal prototype. 

Paul's covert religious fanaticism disguised as Libertarianism makes him even more precious for Putin as it precludes him from usual politicians flip-flopping after the election. According to Russian propaganda, everybody is fake, and only Ron Paul is real.

At the same time, Paul's simplistic 'eat, drink, smoke whatever you want Libertarianism, appealing to naive youth, combined with unbridled anarcho-capitalism, is a right-wing "mirroring" of communist totalitarianism.  

Any radical utopia can be implemented only by authoritarian means. Paul's cult followers' aggression and hate speech in reply to even minor criticism only confirm the dictatorial potential of the libertarian utopia. 

Pro-Paul movement strongly resembles the aggressiveness of Putin's youth followers - lavishly funded anti-western and ultra-patriotic organization 'Nashi,' created by the Kremlin "political technologists" to build Vladimir Putin's personality cult. In both cases, bullying, intimidating, and harassing the opponents are the main means.

Ron Paul's disdain for 'pure democracy' as 'a mob rule' suits Putin much better than other American politicians' calls for democracy. 

For Putin, democracy is a hostile ideology that weakens his power. Russian "sovereign democracy" declaring independence from the U.S. legitimization bizarrely echoes America's new movement of Sovereign citizens, an extremist group proclaiming the internal sovereignty of the American state. The group (as well as many other fringe groups) perfectly fit Putin's intention to disrupt American society. All of them support Ron Paul as their favorite candidate.

Russian 'Gas Elephant' in American Political room

Russian state-run energy giant Gazprom
known as a 'Kremlin's purse,' in 2009 has opened its office in Texas. Like other Russian 'patriotic businesses, Gazprom actively promotes the Russian political agenda abroad. Putin loves the idea of deregulating U.S. business and politics as it opens the country to Russian influence. 

Did Gazprom's coming just luckily coincide with the Citizens United decision, or did Russians stimulate it as they used to influence court decisions in the neighboring countries? Ron Paul openly supported the Citizens United decision, which distorts the democratic process by allowing intransparent proceedings.

In Russia, Gazprom is known for acquiring media outlets to assure control over the independent media and impose the government agenda. Abroad Gazprom works as a political tool by creating gas monopolies and manipulating prices. It is interesting what Gazprom is doing in the U.S. There has been no public information about Gazprom's activities in the U.S. since its coming in 2009. 

Before coming, Gazprom intended to supply LNG to the U.S. from the huge Sakhalin and the Shtokman fields, which should diminish gas prices on the market. However, instead, it is busy with acquiring American energy assets. 

The sphere of Gazprom's interests includes not only American gas fields and facilities but also oil, electric power, and carbon utilities – the areas sensible enough to ensure political control if a critical mass is acquired. As media notes, rising gas prices already cloud Obama's reelection hope.

"Privatization of the U.S. government" 

Ron Paul's 'small government' mantra excites Russians the most as it lets the U.S. government outsource its functions to unaccountable shadow power brokers –  commercial consulting firms making them more influential than elected politicians. 

Ron Paul's radical approach would mean a takeover of the U.S. government by the corporations and not necessarily only by American ones. 
Many of them are sponsored by Russia directly or via its fronts. Russians name the process a "privatization of the U.S. government." 

In fact, Ron Paul, scaring Americans with corporatocracy as 'slipping into fascism,'  promotes the ideology which could lead to the "corporatocracy" by foreign corporations.

Outsourcing combined with the abolishing of the Federal agencies would eventually lead the U.S. to a breakdown similar to the collapse of the USSR. Russians do not hide that they would love this. 

The author of this scenarioformer KGB strategist and the head of the Diplomatic Academy Igor Panarin, names the Tea Party and its Godfather Ron Paul "our friends-Stalinists, whom we have to help organize their revolution'. Ron Paul enforces Panarin's scenario, reiterating that 'secessionism is very much American.'

Putin benefits from Ron Paul's "fight for Liberty," especially his efforts to abolish the CIA and FBI, the structures which for several years secretly run surveillance of the Russian spy ring made public in 2010. Ron Paul's "Unrestricted Liberty" would let Russian spies continue their subversive actions freely until today.  

Ron Paul's fight against 'the underserved excessive power and privilege of the dollar',  his 'End the Fed' mantra, and calls to return to the gold standard entirely coincide with Putin's hatred toward the American dollar and fits his intention to replace American dollar with a new world currency to diminish the U.S. clout in the world. 

Ron Paul's Social Darwinism combining abolishing social programs and state schools, legalization of drugs, and prostitution, in Putin's view, should lead to population degradation and increase inter-racial conflicts. 

Deregulations of the economy would stimulate an even bigger concentration of the wealth in the hands of the 1%, which would mean the ineffective use of resources and the further massive exodus of money and jobs abroad. 

Economic and social degradation coupled with permanent civil confrontation artificially fueled by ultra-right the Tea Party and ultra-left Occupy Movement (both movements created by Putin's operatives) should lead to a permanent class war, police state, and dysfunctional political system. 

For Russia, this will be a huge win both in the propagandistic competition with the U.S. and on the ground as the attractiveness of the U.S. to the Russian neighbors will fade.

"American Apocalypse" as Putin's End Game

Russian' political technologists' name the Libertarian scenario 'American Apocalypse' and brag that it will let them 'to orderly downfall America.' Russian already promotes in the negotiations with other countries the idea that the U.S. is not a great power anymore and its full collapse is just a matter of time. Echoing  Moscow, Ron Paul passionately reiterates during all his public appearances: "We are broke!' 

The message America will collapse is spread in America not only by Putin's propaganda tool R.T. (Russia Today) but by the hired army of lobbyists, P.R. professionals, and the army of English-speaking bloggers. Their task is to cause a sense of inferiority among Americans in the U.S. and abroad and in such a way as to launch the self-fulfilling prophecy mechanism. 

Ron Paul's Libertarianism makes much more sense watching it from Moscow than from the U.S. In other words, if Putin would intend to describe his dream American candidate, you would get Ron Paul. With a president so devoted to Putin and ready to destroy America, Russia does not need physical weapons. 

Putin already envisions America's collapse and prepares to play the role of "the savior". During a press conference, after a long silence, he didn't reply to the question prepared for him in advance by his staff 'would he help America if it collapses? but he couldn't hide the satisfaction with already obtained success on the ground. 

Russia's Shift from Physical to Psychological Warfare

Putin understands very well that Russia lags at least 30 years in the military domain from the West and rejected the idea of 'physical warfare' as irrelevant in the information era in favor of psychological war (not to mention cyber warfare). However, he continues bluffing on Russian military potential mostly to divert the attention from his covert victories in the psychological war against the West.

Putin probably has not enough resources yet to get Ron Paul elected. Paul and his ideas are too appalling to the public. But he does not give up, gradually transforming Ron Paul's fringe ideas into mainstream thinking. 

So far, Putin does not face any obstacle in his way as the psychological warfare is covert, and the U.S. does not fight back. Moreover, the U.S. tries to create a win-win approach in relation to Russia, while any sign of American benevolence is percept as a weakness and only encourages Russia's hidden psychological offense. 

Putin's 'American Apocalypse' Army

So far, Putin's boots on the American ground are unaware of Tea Partiers, with their mantra "we surround them" (Glenn Beck's 912 Project was designed by Russian social engineers as the political  912 ) and Occupiers, with its vanguard burning the American flags.

 Both ultra-right Tea Partiers and ultra-left Occupiers support Ron Pa. In fact, the Tea Party has radicalized the GOP and prepared fertile soil for the Occupy Wall Street movement. 

Now both the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street movement work against bipartisanship which Russia sees as the main strength of the American political system. As the debt ceiling crisis showed last summer, bipartisanship is in a deep crisis. 

The deepening division is a real threat to the American future as it can lead to the dysfunctional Congress and its blockage – what Putin's operatives metaphorically call a 'political 912'. This is the same 'divide and rule strategy Russia uses in the neighboring countries. 

Political will as Putin's main resource  

In the psychological war, the primary resource is the political will. Putin understands this very well,  proclaiming in his meeting with supporters: "We will never allow anyone to interfere in our internal affairs. We will not allow someone to impose their will on us because we have our own will! It has helped us to win! We are "victorious people"! It is in our genes, in our genetic code!" 

Putin can count his covert victories against the U.S. and the E.U. if these creeping attacks are not made public. When propaganda is identified and exposed, it loses its power. 

But for this, there is a need for full awareness, smart approaches, and political will. The world does need a strong and democratic America. 


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