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Old 04-18-2019, 21:21   #1
Badger52
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Dimitry Orlov, on Ukraine, Russia & Empire

Pretty interesting inteview (to me anyway), Orlov holds forth well beyond the typical responses to interview-style questions. full link here.

With not a few parallels that can be drawn with the USA.

Small sample:
Quote:
The Saker: How would you assess the current situation in the Ukraine in terms of social, economic and political collapse?

Dmitry Orlov: The Ukraine has never been viable as an independent, sovereign state and so its ongoing disintegration is to be expected. The applicability of the concept of collapse is predicated on the existence of an intact, stand-alone entity capable of collapse, and with the Ukraine this is definitely not the case. Never in its history has it been able to stand alone as a stable, self-sufficient, sovereign entity. As soon as it gained independence, it just fell over. Just as the Baltics (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania), it had reached its peak of economic and social development just as the USSR was about to collapse, and it has been degenerating and losing population ever since. Thus, the right model for discussing it is not one of sudden collapse but of steady degeneration and decay.

The Ukraine’s territory was stuck together by the Bolsheviks—first by Lenin, then by Stalin, then by Khrushchev. It was Lenin who lumped in its eastern regions (Donetsk and Lugansk specifically) who previously were part of Russia proper. Stalin then added eastern lands, which were at various times Polish, Austro-Hungarian or Romanian. Finally, Khrushchev tossed in Russian Crimea in a move that was unconstitutional at the time, since no public referendum had been held in Crimea to decide this question as was required by the Soviet constitution.

Prior to this Bolshevik effort, “Ukraina” was not used as a proper political or geographic designation. The territory was considered part of Russia, distinguished from the rest by a prefix “Malo-” (small) and called “Malorossiya. The word “ukraina” is simply an archaic form of the Russian word “okraina” (outskirts, border land). This is why the definite article “the” is required: the Ukraine is literally “the outskirts of Russia.” The Soviets endowed this border land with a make-believe identity and forced many of its inhabitants to officially declare their ethnicity as “Ukrainian” in a successful bid to gain an additional seat a the UN.
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Old 04-19-2019, 01:16   #2
Flagg
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My concern lies around Orlov and his mate James Kunstler being perpetual doom merchants.

A broken clock is right twice a day, too.

Reading thru the linked article of Orlov’s, I’m quite surprised at the complete lack of reference to The Ukrainian Famine(Holodomer) and post WWII Ukrainian insurgency against the Soviet occupation.

Ukrainian wheat kept the Soviet Union from starvation and collapse in the 30’s, quite the opposite of Orlov’s emaciated Russian sow feeding greedy republic piglets.

I believe I get Orlov’s relevant points, but something doesn’t add up for me about him.
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Old 04-19-2019, 05:21   #3
Badger52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flagg View Post
My concern lies around Orlov and his mate James Kunstler being perpetual doom merchants.

A broken clock is right twice a day, too.

Reading thru the linked article of Orlov’s, I’m quite surprised at the complete lack of reference to The Ukrainian Famine(Holodomer) and post WWII Ukrainian insurgency against the Soviet occupation.
Yes, no saint there but thought the references on ethnic issues interesting. And, yeah; curious that last omission.
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Old 04-19-2019, 14:59   #4
Flagg
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Originally Posted by Badger52 View Post
Yes, no saint there but thought the references on ethnic issues interesting. And, yeah; curious that last omission.
I have to admit to being a “bit” biased.

Specifically against most everything, bar scientific intellectual capital, that came out of the former Soviet Union.

The bias continues with ethnic/genetic Ukrainian lineage and formal university study.

But even with all that, I’m still seriously confused at times.

I am at best just an interested historical tourist.

Orlov’s points on the Baltic states could also be viewed as ammunition supporting a reinvigorated Russian intervention.

I’ve never been to Estonia, but I know a few Estonians well, have read deeply about their digital state, and have visited the Estonian embassy(a nook in the Finnish embassy) in Canberra to receive my “e-residency”.

My sense is that Estonia is doing a decent job, that they are a truly future focused small nation, and that they are working hard(with US/NATO support) to disrupt Russian efforts to bring the Baltics back under Putin’s mafia curtain.

I would love to get some personal ground truth in Ukraine and the Baltics.
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Old 04-19-2019, 16:40   #5
Badger52
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Originally Posted by Flagg View Post
I would love to get some personal ground truth in Ukraine and the Baltics.
Ditto. The only 1st person anecdotals I've had from a couple different Ukrainians simply confirmed a widespread feeling that they regarded the installation of Poroshenko as a US-backed coup. The region and its folks are interesting souls though.

Estonia tucked away in the Finnish embassy; now that's priceless.
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