Despite all of Vladimir Putin’s efforts to divide and weaken Europe, no one has done more to “strengthen European unity” and prompt all but a handful of Russia’s former allies to look to Brussels rather than Moscow as their desired goal, according to opposition politician Gennady Gudkov.
The reason for this is clear and known to all, he argues. “The Russian state in the person of its political leadership does not respect and does not want to recognize the key principles of world civilization.” And if this trend continues, Russia’s only allies will be Turkmenistan and North Korea or possibly Zimbabwe.
In an Ekho Moskvy post, Gudkov goes through the list of countries that have turned away from Russia and toward Europe: Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Montenegro, Moldova, Georgia, Ukraine and the list goes on. Now even Serbia on whom Russia has devoted so much attention is turning away from Russia and toward Europe.
While Moscow media blames this on the US and Barack Obama – Russian propaganda “couldn’t do otherwise” – in fact Russia has only itself to blame. Indeed, thanks to Putin, Ukraine’s process of nation building and turning to Europe has been accelerated “by about 50 or even more years.”
The fundamental reason that all these countries are looking to Europe is “simple.” “Both Germany and the other countries of Europe have built a very attractive political and economic model of development,” one that has attracted others to their banner rather than driving them away, as Moscow has.
“Does Europe have problems and difficulties?” Gudkov asks rhetorically. “Of course.” But these are the kind of problems that can be addressed rather than shortcomings of the system “which make any progress impossible” as is the case with Russia. Consequently, Moscow’s efforts to weaken Europe are “absolutely senseless and condemned to complete defeat.”
The Kremlin’s own policies, its “thieving plutocracy,” lies about everything, and its nuclear threats “always will drive away from Russia other countries and peoples and transform the great Russian power into an outcast state.” So far, Russians still blame others; but Gudkov suggests they will eventually understand why this is happening and who is to blame.
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