Fear of the Russians

We subscribe to Populär Historia, a Swedish monthly magazine. The cover issue of No. 7, 2014 shows photos of Stalin, Putin and Peter the Great, and is headed Rädslan för Ryssarna. (Fear of the Russians)Underneath the headline  it says that:

“Stalin, Putin and Peter the Great made the Swedes tremble. But is fear of Russia based on a real threat or is it based on old myths?” (my translation).

Why do I raise this now? Many reasons, but underlying them all is the growth of the EU Empire: the New Cold War,  EU’s Drang nach Osten, and now the third reason, the widespread chaos and the hot war that we see in Ukraine. The spilling of blood just grows and grows. The EU is not a democracy, it is rule by oligarchy, with power vested in a small oligarchy of people who happen to be in Government at the time. So no-one can be held accountable. The worst of it is that this oligarchy is not elected by its subjects, the ordinary citizens of the member states of the EU. And the wars it starts threaten to be long-lasting.

The Swedish fear of Russia has deep roots. The Focus Article of Issue 7 is titled “The Swedish Fear of Russia” – Den Svenska Rysskräcken – and refers to the so-called Cossack Election of 1928 in which the Social Democrats worked together with the Communist Party. This aroused strong reactions from the Bourgeois Right that with leaflets and placards  warned the electors of the threat from the Soviet Union. “Everyone who votes for the Social Democrats (Arbetarpartiet) votes for Moscow”. Per Albin Hansson won the election, but with a reduced majority.

In the 2010 General Election, the Left Party still had not shaken off this image. Maud Olofsson made a speech in which she stated she would never sit in the same Government as the Left Party, which evoked wild cheering. Its leader,

I would also note that the EU has been hastily preparing EU Accords for Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova. The map of Eastern Europe shows that all of Eurasia to the Pacific have signed one: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Union_Association_Agreement. As Russia is one it means there are now open trade borders with the EU. How will this work in the current conflict/war situation? Luhansk Oblast and Donetsk Oblast together have a border with Russia that is very “loopy” and so is about 500 km long.

Ukraine and Russia have been together so long that just keeping track of the differences in the proportion of ethnic Russians and Ukrainians is more or less impossible. It is only now when the countries are at war with one another that ethnic composition suddenly becomes important. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russians in Ukraine but note how old the census figures are. It is worth reading the lengthy Talk page to get a feel for how infected this issue is.

The headlines in 20 July 2014 Dagens Nyheter p. 1 says it all: The rebels are accused of plundering the catastrophe location. Political pressure increases on Russia. President Putin is urged to use his influence to achieve an armistice in Ukraine. At the same time the Ukrainian rebels are accused of destroying evidence and plundering the crash site of credit cards, jewellery, and cash from the dead passengers.” (My translation)

Where do these accusations come from, who is making them, and what basis do they have in fact? This sort of headline drama is a typical example of the corporate media’s representation of Russians. It is repeated in media in many languages and all with the same drama.  

 

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