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Putin’s fascism is openly on display in Russia

Russia’s inexorable march toward some form of fascism has become especially evident in recent days. Such developments are not surprising. Extremism is a dangerous path, and once you step onto a right-wing path, as Putin did many years ago, you quickly enter ideological and political territory defined by figures like Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler.

One of the characteristics of fascist and neo-Nazi regimes is that Hitler YouthThe movement’s previous incarnation in Russia was the Nasi (Our People) movement, which was founded in 2005 and dissolved in 2019. Today, this role is filled by the Academician Brotherhood, which has branches in at least 20 Russian universities.

According to opponents Website“Student members of the group meet and attend lectures with politicians and right-wing figures, take part in various projects supporting Russian forces in Ukraine, write denunciations of public figures who oppose the invasion, and sometimes even take part in the war themselves.”

But that’s not all: “The ultimate goal of the group is to help Russia fulfill its spiritual mission of becoming a Christian empire.” As a result, the academicians hope that the 21st century will be a “golden age for Russian culture” and a “period of Russian ideological and cultural dominance in the world.”

Considering Russia’s small economy, incompetent military and lack of soft power, all we can say is “good luck!” Unfortunately, the academicians’ imperialistic megalomania will do great damage to Russia and its neighbors.

Another characteristic of fascism is the demonization of the “other” and deliberate illogicality. Oleg Sviridenko, Russia’s Deputy Minister of Justice, said in a speech at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum: Warned Gay and transgender people are “easily drawn into extremist activities” and can become “vectors of gender extremism and gay nationalism.” Sviridenko declined to specify what extremist activities these are, perhaps because the charges are so absurd.

The most ridiculous thing is his mention of “gay nationalism.” Nationalism can be interpreted in many ways, but whatever it is, it has to do with the nation. One might talk about Russian nationalism or Greek nationalism, but gay nationalism makes just as much sense as blonde nationalism or tall nationalism.

But that doesn’t matter, because illogicality does. In Sviridenko’s parallel world, everyone he hates must be a nationalist, and that includes homosexuals. They are then conveniently lumped together with Ukrainians, who are by definition “neo-Nazi” nationalists, and both are coldly eradicated as dangerous.

Speaking of extermination, consider the incomparable Vladimir Solovyov, Russian TV personality and pro-Putin Russia’s answer to Germany’s Joseph Goebbels: here’s one of his latest genocides. comment: “All those scumbag Nazis must be exterminated. Do you know why?” [Ukraine] We need to purify! Have you ever tried to get rid of bedbugs?

Expecting Putin to negotiate with “bedbugs,” as some naive Western analysts still do, is as unrealistic as expecting Adolf Hitler to negotiate with lesser beings.

As anyone who studies genocide knows, one of the key steps involved in genocide is the discursive transformation of targeted peoples into subhumans, non-humans, vermin, etc. Jews, Roma, and Slavs were inferior races in Goebbels’ warped world. In Solovyov’s world, Ukrainians are bedbugs. When we consider Solovyov’s ravings in the context of Sviridenko’s, we are forced to conclude that homosexuals are just as much bedbugs as Ukrainians.

Karin Kneissl, former Austrian Foreign Minister, far-right liberal partyShe moved to Russia last year. Very enthusiastic “I like living in Russia because there is freedom here. And freedom means living in safety. And in St. Petersburg, Moscow or Khabarovsk you can even walk through the park at night. In Austria this was possible 30 years ago. Now it’s not possible.”

Kneissl is probably afraid of the violent gays, evil Ukrainians, and nasty bedbugs that lurk in a dangerous place like Vienna, which is consistently rated as the most livable city in the world. (Lest you think Kneissl is the only Westerner to hold these strange pro-Putin values, Columbia University economist Jeffrey Sachs has I went to the grace Solovyov’s crazy radio waves.

Given that Russia has strayed from the path of rationality, it is likely that Putin’s great friend and ally, the incomparable Kim Jong Un of North Korea, has been released Balloons filled with fertilizer and garbage in the skies over South Korea. It’s unclear what Pyongyang hopes to achieve with this symbolic gesture, but it’s certainly preferable to missile tests and military threats.

Putin, Solovyov, Sviridenko and Kneissl are liars (to put it mildly), so North Korea might want to consider using them in its next balloon show.

Alexander J. MotylProfessor of Political Science at Rutgers University, Newark. Specialist in Ukraine, Russia, the Soviet Union, nationalism, revolution, empire, and theory. Author of ten non-fiction books.The end of the empire: The Decline, Collapse, and Rise of Empire” and “Why empires are re-emerging: The fall of empire and the rise of empire in comparative perspective.