Look at these young men and boys! What material! I shall eradicate the thousands of years of human domestication. Brutal youth–that is what I am after…I want to see once more in the its eyes the gleam…of the beast of prey. With these I can make a new world…and create a new order! ~Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf
Vladimir Putin, like Adolph Hitler and VI Lenin, knows that the best place to start is in the beginning. If one wishes to truly change society, it’s important to begin indoctrination during the most impressionable stages, when the lessons will truly stick. Thus Putin and his administration are deeply involved in a Russian youth movement known as the Nashi (Ours). As of 2002, Nashi held over 50,000 members.
Not surprisingly, Vladislav Surkov, a Russian government official who provided large sums of money to Putin during elections, is the patron of Nashi. Surkov is a major power broker in the Russian government; he is one of 7 Russian officials sanctioned by the US government after the Russian annexation of Crimea.
Interestingly enough, and completely in line with the Russian government’s talenty for seizing upon international, academic, and media zeitgeist, Nashi creator Vasily Grigoryevich Yakemenko says the movement was created to battle “skin heads and Nazis” in Russia. Remember, this was the same language used to justify Russia’s initial intervention in Crimea. This rhetoic is intended to dissuade criticism from liberal groups, whom reflexively hate fascism. Nashi has been accused of intimidation of rival youth groups. Nashi has even established its own political party, registered with the Kremlin.
Nashi is used for political demonstrations against the West, the US in particular. This is a growing trend in Russia, fully supported and endorsed by the Kremlin.
One of the Seliger Forum’s managers and Russia’s youngest parliament member, 25-year-old Robert Schlegal, used to be a well-known anti-American activist. Three years ago, Schlegal—sometimes called Putin’s favorite protégé—led a crowd of 12,000 Nashi members to the American embassy in Moscow and played a film in which a cartoon George W. Bush claimed, “I control the world’s oil, economy, wars, culture, science, and information.” While Schlegal still refers to the United States as “the most aggressively dominating empire,” he now says Nashi’s anti-Western attacks are “the old agenda.”
The most prominent and striking feature of Nashi is that it seemingly seeks to build upon Putin’s cult of personality, its members sporting Putin tshirts and chanting songs in his praise. Putin is building his support for a possible extension of his time in power.
Supporters of Nashi say that Russia has a long history of such groups. They are correct. VI Lenin established The Young Pioneers, which survived until the late Soviet days. The American, Samantha Smith, was even accorded membership on her visit in 1983.
The Nashi are fully indoctrinated in Russian nationalism and Putin’s regime. The extant of their activies far exceeds that of comparable American organizations, such as the Scouts. The Nashi’s sole reason for existing is to build Putin’s power base, and to crush and shame opposition. Nashi is a political tool.
This is the first entry of my series, which analyzes Putin’s quest to bend all aspects of the Russian state and people to his will. Aspects of the youth groups will be analyzed in more depth, later.
In the following weeks, I plan on publishing a series of articles analyzing Russia’s transformation into a fascist state, perhaps the only such state in the world. These articles will look at not only current events, but will analyze history, the Russian and Soviet mind, and Vladimir Putin. Russia’s military capabilities as well as the role of the KGB, FSB and GRU (military intelligence) in the current state of world affairs will also be prominent issues.
First, in order to show Russia’s descent to fascism, we must first consider what this term really means or implies. As Orwell noted “fascism” may be one of the most overused and abused words in the English language. Below is a list of traits typical to fascist regimes, as noted by Dr. Lawrence Britt:
1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism – Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights – Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of “need.” The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause – The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc. 4. Supremacy of the Military – Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.5. Rampant Sexism – The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.6. Controlled Mass Media – Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.7. Obsession with National Security – Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.8. Religion and Government are Intertwined – Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposedto the government’s policies or actions.9. Corporate Power is Protected – The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.10. Labor Power is Suppressed – Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts – Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment – Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption – Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.14. Fraudulent Elections – Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.
An analysis of each of the above points would be sufficient to show that Russia is moving toward, or may even now be, a fascist state. However, there are other points to consider in why this is important, and to show people that much of this was possibly planned years, if not decades ago by Soviet leadership. It is also important because it is possible that certain politicians in Russia may still dream that Russia will dominate Europe, or at least the parts of Europe that were once members of the Soviet Bloc. Some of the analysis concerning possible Soviet plans, the KGB, and Russian intelligence will be conspiratorial in nature. As many know, I’m not much for conspiracies. But, there is there is a plethora of data to prove these points, including released KGB documents, information from defected Soviet intelligence officers, the testimony from exerts in the CIA as well as current world events.
This series is rather broad in scope and will likely require several months to complete.
To make the individual uncomfortable, that is my task.~ Frederick Nietzsche
Someone posted my recent blog post, The Feminization of Everything, on Reddit yesterday, and some other people posted a link to my article on other blogs, resulting in the single biggest day of blog traffic I’ve had on any blog I’ve hosted.
I’m not sure if it was done as a joke, as a prod, or as a genuine contribution to a string, but the person posted my article under the “feminism” subreddit. Of course, this subreddit is largely populated by feminists and my article is receiving some interesting comments. Actually, it hasn’t received one positive comment, though some frightened individuals appreciate my article, as it’s received twice as many “like’ votes as dislikes. It is #3 in the “hot” tab under feminism, and #1 under the “controversial” tab.
I have never posted to Reddit, never used it to increase blog traffic. When I post links to my articles, it is usually because I want honest input from people I trust or know; I’m willing to see others’ views, and I want to know the weaknesses of my own arguments. Many times, blogging is a very inferior way of expressing one’s views on issues, as they tend to be written spur-of-the-moment. A book would be better. I don’t handle my blog in a professional manner, though perhaps I should.
One comment on Reddit stated that my article seemed fascist. Another called it a “tantrum” and “junk”. One more implored others not to read the article at all, apparently afraid some may find some good in it. I’m not sure if I should be honored or dismayed by this person’s opinion. I lean towards being honored. The last 5 years of my life have provided ample opportunity for self-examination, a crucible of honesty with myself. I realize my weaknesses, my strengths. I have something to say, I see problems in the world, and every so often a person comes along who can’t help but obsess about the tragedy of it all. Such is my melancholic personality.
Are my views fascist? I’ve asked the same question myself. And I’m willing to concede they are at some level. But it’s almost meaningless to me. The only reason it’s not completely meaningless is because I know I’ve made the right people uncomfortable. Change for the better rarely occurs without pain and discomfort. The term fascism is as meaningless to me as the word “drug”. What kind of drug, aspirin or Methamphetamine? A single word cannot probe the intricacies of reality.
I regard the modern world as incredibly unauthentic, a poseur propped us by the rich daddies of yesteryear who did most of the work. Acting as children, we play make believe in the mansion built by our forefathers. The mansion is crumbling for lack of maintenance.
I won’t spend time writing about the misuse and overuse of the term, “fascist.” The criticisms of the lazy usage of the word have become as cliche’ as the word itself. I will say however, that if someone wishes to insult me with a commonly misused and misunderstood word, “reactionary” would be more appropriate. I would not deny the label.
Surprisingly, I found the definition that best suited me, not in Websters, but in the online Urban Dictionary:
One who supports Reaction in opposition to the general progressive Western zeitgeist, often accompanied by a sense that the expansion of democratic politcs has made life in general much worse either in absolute terms, or measured by what should have been achievable with modern science, reason, and technology; usually believes race is a real genetic construct and therefore not surprised at disparate average outcomes across large population groups; often believes human evolution has in part or in toto shaped human nature, which therefore cannot easily, or at all, be changed very much by social engineering and/or conditioning; usually believes heirarchy is imprinted upon mankind by nature and/or God, and that heirarchy is not only not necessarily evil, but desirable and even inevitable and ought not be torn down for any but the most grave reasons; tends to support tradition either as revealed by his religion and/or as successful adaptive memetic developments which usually solve deep and complex problems in human societies; anti-revolutionary; anti-socialist; anti-communist; anti-whig; anti-democratic; anti-globalist; skeptical; (once a term of derision, most reactionaries of late do happily so self-identify)Tom suddenly realized he couldn’t find a single Republican at the convention who didn’t hail FDR anything less than a great hero. He remembered knowing conservatives in his youth who opposed both FDR and WWII. But where were they now? They had disappeared, but their thoughts and words had not. Tom hadn’t changed his mind about much in the past 25 years, but he suddenly realized he was a Reactionary.
Every good citizen makes his country’s honor his own, and cherishes it not only as precious but as sacred. He is willing to risk his life in its defense and its conscious that he gains protection while he gives it. But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing.
Last week I passed through the Frankfurt, Germany, Airport on my way back to duty in Afghanistan. I saw that German security was doing pat-downs. I don’t know if they were doing 100% pat-downs, but in any case when I passed through the medal detector, the alarm went off. I believe it was my watch. So I was moved to a secondary search area inside a low-walled booth where a male security officer did a pat down and another sweep with a hand-held metal detector.
The whole time I was trying to conjure my Patrick Henry Doppelganger: “Give me junkless plane rides or give me death!”
Alas. The spirit was not moved. I envisioned our Founding Fathers of demigod status, demanding freedom from English conscription and crushing taxes. Washington mustering his troops at Valley Forge. Surely a pat-down should entice my revolutionary spirit. Was I even a real American anymore? No outrage, no images of Nazi Germany dancing through my head. Had I become so weak that I’d even vote for Jimmy Carter if he decided America needed yet another bad president?
Oh, but wait. There is always that man of letters that one can clamor to if one wishes to see totalitarianism in every motive, in each new rule. especially when one can’t really find the material, negative impact of that rule. It’s all about ideals, don’t you know. Orwell.
What a great year. And what a great book for the rabble-rouser. At any moment I can make any law look like it was penned by a fascist, simply by calling out that famed year.
My 30 second pat-down was over. And none too soon. Because surely, surely I say, had it lasted one second longer, I’d have been whisked off to a concentration camp and had my knee caps drilled. Or I’d have been goose-stepping to the coffee shop just on the other side of the screening area. All my American values dashed, succumbing to inglorious junk-grabbing. And all because terrorism is winning.
At last, after that long 30 seconds, I cast off my Thought Crimes, and skipped–no shiny black boots to slow me–to grap a hot cup of joe. Freedom never tasted so good….
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance.
A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
A time to search and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear apart and a time to sew together; A time to be silent and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate; A time for war and a time for peace.
Recently, a friend of mine, Royce, asked my opinion on the military draft. Royce wrote an article on his opinions and concerns about the military draft, and said he’d like to know what I thought.
Let me start by saying that as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to realize the same things that the author of Ecclesiastes realized: That everything is contextual. Most actions have benefits and hindrances. The wise person finds the action that best fits the circumstances. Ideology is the enemy of wisdom.
That being said, I believe that the military draft has some very real benefits under some very specific circumstances. The most obvious benefit is that a country can increase the size of its fighting force more easily than with an all volunteer force. Don’t be fooled; numbers matter. If we had more troops in Afghanistan and Iraq from the beginning, we likely would have cut the time we’ve spent in this war by half. Counterinsurgency works best with lots of soldiers. Not tanks, planes or satellites. Men with rifles at every street corner. Eyes looking in every direction. Our current force structure is severely strained in COIN operations, because we don’t have enough men. We must rely on extraordinary mobility. But even then, the enemy can fairly easily just decide to be where we are not. With more men, we would be almost everywhere, and the insurgency would fizzle before it ever got rolling.
Another benefit of the draft is that it can break down social walls. For instance, blacks and whites were both drafted in WWII, and this resulted in blacks gaining considerable respect amongst the white soldiers. The military knows that shared hardship brings men closer together and helps cohesion. This is why Basic Training is made so uncomfortable; to teach people how to rely on each other. I’ve often made the point while deployed to Afghanistan and working in military intelligence, that we must find mechanisms to break the tribal barriers in order to make Afghanistan a truly unified nation. Of course, many of my colleagues are afraid of breaking anything, so they say we must work within the tribal barriers. Tribalism is an anathema to a healthy democracy. We should instead inspire nationalism. Remember what I said about everything having a time and place. Yes, even nationalism.
When I travelled to refugee camps in Afghanistan, I saw thousands of people from various tribes who got a long just fine. Something that could not be said for the non-refugee tribes throughout the country. The southern tribes generally hate the northern tribes, and locally situated tribes constantly compete for resources. The Taliban uses tribal conflict as a recruiting tool. But the people in the refugee camps we forced to work together. They moved to Pakistan when the Soviets invaded and experienced decades of hardship. The tribal lines are now essentially shattered. The societies within these camps function better than those outside the camps.
Myself and another analyst surmised that a good way to unify Afghanistan and to empower the critically weak central government would be to institute a draft. This would accomplish several things that may help the situation in Afghanistan:
- It would employ fighting aged men, those most likely to join the insurgency. It would also give these men a sense of nationalism, as being part of the system instead of seeing the system as the enemy.
- It would greatly increase the number of security forces to fight against the Taliban, which would in turn hasten the ability of the coalition forces to leave.
- It would have psychologically legitimize the government in the minds of the people. Two critical areas in the legitimacy of a government is its monopoly on violence and its ability to collect taxes. A draft may solidify a monopoly on violence.
- Lastly, people from all over Afghanistan would be forced to work together. And the hardship of warfare against the Taliban would bind them together. The Taliban may be forever alienated, as few men who’d fought a war against the Taliban would ever decide to join them, and they would probably teach their children to hate them, too.
I’m not saying that a draft is possible in Afghanistan, but I think the idea should be fully explored.
Historically speaking, there are many instances in which a draft produced a very effective army. America itself has used the draft as far back as the colonial, militia days. There was always some push-back, but generally the men served when asked to, and the world is a better place for it. And initially there were problems with minorities serving with whites, but eventually the US Army became the first organization to employ full integration under Truman. I’d dare say that today’s US Military has the least racial tension of any population block of similar size in America.
It’s difficult to imagine the United States fighting against an enemy such as Nazi Germany today without having to employ a draft. Approximately 18 million men fought at one time or another in the Wehrmacht (German Army in WWII) between the years of 1939 and 1945. Even given the immense proficiency and near miraculous technology available to today’s American war fighter, we have only approximately 3 million people serving across all branches, and that includes reservists. The German’s used a draft, and it was instrumental in building the virulent form of nationalistic pride we know as National Socialism. Never the less, it was that sense of nationalism that helped the German army to be the best man for man army of the war. Napoleon also employed a similar strategy with his Grand Armee’. Marching across Europe, he conscripted men from many European countries and proceeded to trounce just about everyone.
There are of course, several negative aspects of conscription. First, morale tends to be lower in conscripted armies than in volunteer armies. The word volunteer implies that people want to be there, whereas conscripted soldiers may severely damage the morale of those in their unit some of these men may not be the sort a commander would want in his charge. If we look at some of the instances of “fragging” in Vietnam, we can see the differences in that army compared to the one now. Such things are nearly unimaginable in the Army I serve in, yet in some cases in Vietnam, officers would not even venture into the barracks areas of enlisted men, for fear of being assaulted. Men who didn’t want to be in the army had little fear of being kicked out or put in jail, which they considered better than being in combat.
While the Germans did employ conscription in WWII, it must be noted that they had a very deeply ingrained military elite before the war. A German soldier was paid about six times as much as a French soldier and was drilled to utter perfection, a model of soldierly discipline. The army was very professional. Combining a professional backbone with nationalistic fervor had a synergistic effect that simply did not exist in America during the period of the Vietnam War. And it doesn’t exist now in America, either. The draft has become almost synonymous with Vietnam and fascism. In reality, it is merely a tool.
The draft can also introduce different types of people into the military. An all volunteer force may become too rigid in its thinking and may also become alienated from the civilian population. I do see some of this in America, but I don’t think it’s a huge problem; there’s always been a sense of alienation from the civilians, even in draft wars like Vietnam.
In a professional army, you get the best man for man army money can buy. But it takes a lot of money to buy it. The military is forced to become competitive with the civilian world in terms of pay and benefits.
Here in Germany, where I’m stationed, the German government makes people either serve two years in the military or do two years of service in another field, like helping disabled people. While I do see that this can help people in general, I don’t think it makes for a very good military. It leads to a “just passing through” mentality. I think that type of thinking could infect even those who want to make careers in the German Army. Some countries, such as Israel, do it because they need every body they can get. Countries like Israel also have mandatory service, but there are rumors that even the Israeli army is going soft. I think bringing everyone into the army inevitably leads to a slide to softness.
The Romans had an interesting take, and became a much better army when they professionalized. Originally, the Roman army was comprised of citizens who laid down their farming tools to pick up weapons when their country needed them. It did work well, because every Roman had a distinct sense of civic duty, soemthing lacking in most western nations, with the decline of state legitimacy almost universally seen through Europe and America. But eventually, the army became a proffession for Rome. There were massive reforms under Marius, which allowed people from the lower classes to enter the military, and the contract lasted something like 25 years. People served in the military at much older ages in Rome; some of the gereals were in their 70s and Julius was on campaign in his 50s, at a time that required much more physical hardiness in war than it does now. A little bit off the draft subject: I think we should up the age limit drastically in the military. Older people are the most knowledgable and mature people we have, and yet we cut out a huge swath of our best from eligibility. We’re hurting our military.
For now, I think no draft in America is the best thing. It does put a strain on the military to some extent, but the last thing the military needs is anymore softness, which is what bringing in every civilian at this point would do. In addition, people would just go nuts, throwing around terms like fascism and militarism and slavery and all that hyperbole that’s so popular (and damaging) on the internet. The zeitgeist is not right. For now, a warrior class is the best way. Most real warriors I know like it that way.
One of the first films I disctincly remember seeing as a youth is Logan’s Run. The movie’s based on a novel by the same name, written by William F. Nolan and George Johnson.
The dystopian horror story starts like this:
- “The seeds of the Little War were planted in a restless summer during the mid-1960s, with sit-ins and student demonstrations as youth tested its strength. By the early 1970s over 75 percent of the people living on Earth were under 21 years of age. The population continued to climb — and with it the youth percentage.
- In the 1980s the figure was 79.7 percent.
- In the 1990s, 82.4 percent.
- In the year 2000 — critical mass.”
In order to combat the over population in the year 2116, it is law that people report for execution on the day they turn 21 years old. Sometimes people try to escape this fate and become Runners, and they attempt to make it to a secret coven of others like themselves–a space colony called Sanctuary. The government dispatches professional assassins, known as Sandmen to murder the Runners.
The main character–Logan 3, is himself a Sandman, who over the course of the book, becomes a Runner.
The book also depicts a world where promiscuous sex and drug use are not frowned upon, and yet tobacco is illegal.
Sorry, but I can’t help but see some parrallels with what’s going on with the Global Warming issue. GW is now the great funnel through which all progressive agendas are poured: Population control, anti-meat rhetoric, environmentalism, totem-like worship of animals, anti-industrialism.
Think Logan’s Run can’t happen? I hope not, but how much farther is that dystopian vision from Diane Francis’ idea, as printed in the Canadian Paper: Financial Post?
Yup, you read correctly. Francis proposes a world-wide law preventing people from having more than one child. As she states in ending:
Spoken like a true liberal fascist.