The perils of Russia not coming to terms with its past

The perils of Russia not coming to terms with its past

In my view, this fifteen-year journey back to the USSR under the leadership of a former KGB lieutenant colonel has shown the world the vicious nature and archaic underpinnings of the Russian state’s “vertical power” structure, more than any “great and terrible” Putin. With a monarchical structure such as this, the country automatically becomes hostage to the psychosomatic quirks of its leader. All of his fears, passions, weaknesses, and complexes become state policy. If he is paranoid, the whole country must fear enemies and spies; if he has insomnia, all the ministries must work at night; if he’s a teetotaler, everyone must stop drinking; if he’s a drunk—everyone should booze it up; if he doesn’t like America, which his beloved KGB fought against, the whole population must dislike the United States. A country such as this cannot have a predictable, stable future; gradual development is extraordinarily difficult.

Unpredictability has always been Russia’s calling card, but since the Ukrainian events, it has grown to unprecedented levels: no one knows what will happen to our country in a month, in a week, or the day after tomorrow. I think that even Putin doesn’t know; he is now hostage to his own strategy of playing “bad guy” to the West. The wheel of unpredictability has been spun; the rules of the game have been set. The trump card of Putin’s first decade was stability, which he used to destroy opposition and drive it underground. Now he’s playing the capricious, unpredictable Queen of Spades. This card will beat any ace.

H/t: National Review