Western leaders again more afraid of Russian disintegration than of Russian threat, Kasparov says

Putin's Russia - militarized and ready for imperialist aggression all over the world (Image: TTOLK.ru)

Putin's Russia (Image: TTOLK.ru) 

2017/01/08 • Analysis & Opinion, Politics, Russia

Garry Kasparov

Garry Kasparov

Russian opposition leader Garry Kasparov said many interesting things in the course of his responses to questions from his followers, but perhaps the most important was this: Once again, as in 1991, Western leaders are more afraid of the disintegration of Russia than they are of the threat Putin’s Russia poses to the world.

His argument on this point is so important that it is translated in full below:

“The West feared the disintegration of the USSR, and there is nothing surprising in that. Western geopolitics is based on the concept of the status quo. The West seeks to avoid global geopolitical changes and tries to find various ways of maintaining the current situation.

 

“The breakup of the Soviet Union was a shock for the West. The administration of Bush the elder did everything in order to avoid that. The situation in Russia today in a certain sense is analogous to that which occurred 25 years ago.

 

“The potential breakup of Russia frightens Western politicians because that could add still more to uncertainties in a world which today is affected by chaos. Certain of these politicians sincerely believe that Putin can be their ally in the preservation of the status quo.

 

“With the help of his propaganda, Putin has very skillfully created an image of a main threat coming from the Islamic East. And on this issue, he is trying to present himself as an ally of the West in the struggle with terrorism, although it is obvious that all attempts to find a compromise with Putin’s Russia ignore reality and hardly will be able to change the course of historical progress.

 

“The West clearly does not have an understanding of how to act under conditions of the spontaneous collapse of Russia. And in fact, since 1991, the West has not had a strategic plan. From 1945 to 1991, there was a strategy: under conditions of the cold war and conflict with the USSR, it was necessary to contain [the Soviet threat of expansion] and to create an attractive model of its own for the rest of the world.

 

“The plans formulated during Harry Truman’s administration were triumphantly realized under that of Ronald Reagan. Today, the leaders of the free world must finally recognize that the preservation of Putin’s Russia in its current form is a much greater problem than the potential breakup of the country.”


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Edited by: A. N.

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  • laker48

    Kasparov is right and, paradoxically, the Trump presidency and persisting low global prices of oil and gas may become catalysts accelerating the spontaneous breakup and ultimate decomposition of the “evil empire”.

    • anonymous

      President Trump will normalize relations with Russia. How that will help break the Russia I cannot imagine.

      • laker48

        Yet to be seen!

      • Brent

        Doofus, Bush claimed to “see Putin’s soul” and Obama tried to “reset” relations with Russia. Russia was invited into the G8 and WTO and NATO has conducting joint exercises with Russia in 2013. It didn’t turn out very well for either of them when they realized how untrustworthy they Kremlin Mafia led by Putin really was….Drumpf will eventually find out the same thing even though that seems to be the common theme in all of your posts….

        • laker48

          “You can always count on Americans to do the right thing – after they’ve tried everything else.”
          – Winston Churchill

        • anonymous

          Both Bush and Obama spoke critical words of Putin/Russia. Quote one critical word from Trump; just one.

          • Brent

            AFTER both Bush and Obama tried to have improved relations with Rossiya, who keeps proving time and time again, how the Kremlin Mafia cannot be trusted

          • anonymous

            There is a big difference between Bush, Obama, and Trump. Trump will not say one word of criticism of Putin. Trump is the true “Putin apologist”. Neither Bush nor Obama was ever a “Putin apologist”.

          • laker48

            This horse is dead. Let’s wait! The live show will start in 10 days.

          • anonymous

            The show has started. Nobody wants to see it for what it is. All are hoping what I have stated is not true (including mouthy senators). I hope also but I am not optimistic for good reason; I recognize a “Putin apologist” when I see one and I know what that means for foreign policy. This horse (discussion) is only “dead” because everyone has hope for post inauguration change in President Trump; for me a flimsy hope not based on reality.

          • laker48

            Well, just wait Mr./Ms. Krembot! :)

        • zorbatheturk

          Putin was born without a soul.

        • Randolph Carter

          When NATO and Russia ran their joint exercises, what tipped them off to the the Kremlin? Espionage, industrial theft, sabotage? I can do my own research, but a tip would send me in the right direction…

          Bush “saw Putin’s soul”? What was he on, some of the floral products
          of Afghanistan? IMO, Obama was a waste; he just didn’t give a damn.

  • Eolone

    The time between G. H. W. Bush’s resolve to keep the USSR united and the collapse of that state was so short as to be meaningless in political terms.

    Btw, Kasparov spoke, probably on Fox News, a few weeks ago about Obama’s “red line” failure in Syria. On the contrary, Obama succeeded with the red line. It’s goal was narrow, the elimination of missiles carrying chemical weapons in Syria. The last on these missiles were destroyed on a US Naval ship in 2014. The few chemical weapons Syria has used recently, in 2015 and around August and September 2016, are new, crude, and not of the previous military type, mainly chlorine gas dropped by helicopter. Of course, Assad could not be trusted, especially with Russia behind him.

    • WisconsinUSA

      obama succeeded with the “red line”. boy , that’s a stretch.

      • Eolone

        The crude chemical weapons that were manufactured after 2014 were not part of the agreement. I’ve had to correct many such comments like yours in the past, even an journalistic article. Too many were not paying attention. Fox News will continue with its fake news as long as it can.

        From July 2014: Chemical weapons transported to US Navy ship: Syria chemical weapons leave Italy in US ship – BBC News

        “A US ship carrying deadly material
        from Syria’s chemical weapons programme has left Italy in the final
        phases of the destruction of the arsenal.

        The naval vessel is
        taking the cargo, including mustard gas and components of the nerve
        agents VX and sarin, to international waters to be destroyed.”

        Sept. 2014: US Navy ship completes mission: Ship Used to Destroy Syria’s Chemical Weapons Returns to U.S. – USNI News

        “The ship put into swift service to destroy the chemical weapons of
        Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad has returned to Norfolk, Va. after eight
        months at sea, an official at the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD)
        told USNI News on Wednesday.”

        • WisconsinUSA

          who are you ? i have never commented on your posts until 4 hours ago. unless you are using a new name .yeah i see all your quotations.how about pulling up the quotations of the hundreds of thousands of people assad has killed since the world famous “red line ” was crossed by him.

          • Eolone

            Who are you trying to fool, Wisc.? Look at the time stamp. I have only one account here. Assad has killed thousands, of course, but the red line concerned chemical weapons. Look that up. The crude weapons Assad subsequently used was “poking darky in the eye” as a means of retaliation. But these attacks were few and relatively few people died from these later chemical attacks.

          • WisconsinUSA

            Relatively few died from these later chemical attacks so you say. I beg to differ. I submit to you that assad has continued to use nerve gas over and over again. There is so much fake news propaganda mixed up pictures one person blaming the other this is isis no this is a Assad . We will never know for sure. In the final analysis, the redline that Obama Drew In the sand against Assad ultimately involved more than just Assad using chemical weapons against his people. Our adversarys correctly identified it as weakness coming from Obama. History will show that. Relatively few huh ? How do you defined few ?

          • Eolone

            About 1400 Syrians were killed by rocket fired nerve gas when Obama spoke. He referred to this, not to the entire war.

            The number of people killed by chloride gas after the rockets were destroyed was smaller.

            NY Daily News, Aug. 2013: “In June, the U.S. concluded that Assad’s regime used chemical weapons
            against his foes. That crossed what Obama called a “red line,” prompting
            a U.S. decision to begin arming rebel groups, though that has not
            happened yet.”

    • zorbatheturk

      The North Koreans were building a military nuclear reactor for Assad. Until an Israeli airstrike on 6 Sep 2007 turned it to rubble. Assad is a naughty boy.

      • Eolone

        Thank you, Zorba. There are things, too, I’ve missed or forgotten. I’ll look it up.

        • zorbatheturk

          Operation Orchard. In 2004 a train exploded in North Korea. On board were many Syrian nuclear technicians. Assad was planning something… a nuke!

          • Eolone

            I found reference to the two incidents you mentioned. Hope is that Iran, at least, will continue to moderate. As for NK, there might be a missile launch as Trump is inaugurated. I also expect the US to be prepared for it.

      • Quartermaster

        The Stuff the NORKs were assembling in NE Syria, and destroyed by the Israelis in 2007, originally came from Iraq.

  • anonymous

    I recall that Kasparov previously spoke that Putin will loose control only from some “mistake”. There are many methods the west could use to help with that mistake. However, as Kasparov states above, western leaders are afraid to aid the end of Putin for fear the next phase would be more perilous.

    • RedSquareMaidan

      Hopefully that mistake is MH17

      • anonymous

        MH17 is not an internal issue for Russia. The propaganda outlets have dealt with the possible problems and turned it into a Putin advantage within Russia.

        • Quartermaster

          Within Russia is the extent his propaganda has no competition from the truth.

  • Dirk Smith

    Spot on. The West mishandled ruSSia after the collapse in 1991. They continued their naivety throughout the Clinton, Bush, & Odumba administrations in the hopes that the former Soviet Union would accept democratic norms of society over night. When, in reality, the KGB oligarchs continued to be the puppetmaster behind the scenes. Now with a greedy reptilian KGB clerk in charge, via the Tambov mafia, this third-world gas station has now gained supposed respectability. So now that this mafia kleptocracy has the USA’s full attention, crush them now with deeper sanctions. Pray that the moron Trump listens to his generals, Congress, and the American people. Islamic terror is the least of our worries with this fascist oligarchy operating in the kremlin.

  • Oknemfrod

    >The West clearly does not have an understanding of how to act under conditions of the spontaneous collapse of Russia.<

    Nor "the West" (quoting because it's not quite clear what's exactly meant by that) can have it, since at present nobody knows in which manner and how Russia will disintegrate. However, it would be quite presumptuous to assume that within certain agencies in "the West", and particularly in the US, certain groups of qualified people haven't been weighing out various more or less plausible scenarios. As a Großmeister, Kasparov ought to understand it better than anyone and also know that no matter how many developments are prepared in advance, the game can end up not following any of them. What's more, the issue at hand is much more complex than any chess game. In the latter, at least it's given that the fixed rules will be adhered to. Yet with the Kremlin dwarf as a "player" the first contingency to consider how to deal with – and I'm quite certain that it's being considered – is the scenario when he grabs a bunch of pieces off the board and hurls them at the opponent.

    Another angle Kasparov seems to be ignoring is that deeds speak louder than words. If the perspective of Russia's disintegration were so frightful to "the West", it would be logical for it to do everything possible to keep Russia afloat and whole, which hardly lines up with such actions as imposing sanctions, dumping oil/gas prices, luring Russia into an arms race, isolating it, etc. Of course, a number of politicians may prefer to keep the status quo for a variety of reasons (just like many had done before the collapse of the USSR), and yet it appears that as a whole, "the West" is working against it.

  • zorbatheturk

    Politicians and voters are dumb and always need an -ism as a threat. Soviet RuSSia was a wonderful bogeyman because it was Communist. Great. Let’s kill commies, even if they are just Vietnamese anti-colonial nationalists like Ho Chi Minh. Now we have Islamicism, terrorism, and jihadism. Great! So many -isms to fight! When the real threat is good old fashioned RuSSian imperialism, which let the tsars spread their mischief from Petersburg to Vladivostok. The -ism that most needs to be contained is Putinism! Lock and load!