Jun 10, 2022
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V. Medinsky: Russia is now smaller than the Russian Empire, but “this is not forever”

In the photo: Presidential Aide Vladimir Medinsky.

In the photo: Presidential Aide Vladimir Medinsky. (Photo: Artem Geodakyan/TASS)

On June 8, VDNKh in Moscow hosted the opening of an international historical forum dedicated to the 350th anniversary of the birth of Peter the Great. Its participants noted that the very figure of the first Russian emperor is so global and inexhaustible that it will be a beacon for researchers for decades to come.

Presenting at this event a book about the first Russian emperor, the chairman of the Russian Military Historical Society and concurrently an assistant to the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Medinskyin particular, he noted that this is only the first volume in the documentary-fiction series “Gatherers of the Russian Land”.

According to him, it is “dedicated to those rulers of Russia, from the very beginning, from Rurikunder which our land did not disintegrate, did not decrease, did not crumble, but increased, grew, under which the country became larger. Each subsequent volume of it will be dedicated to “those people who created a country with an area of ​​one-sixth of the planet until recently.”

Vladimir Medinsky also stressed that the territory of modern Russia is now slightly smaller compared to the Russian Empire. “But it’s not forever,” he concluded with a smile.

The hall, which was attended not only by officials from education and enlightenment, but also by state functionaries, greeted these words with applause.

– I have a very simple question – where were you before, Mr. Medinsky? asked, for example, Vyacheslav Tetekin, Russian politician, Class I adviser to the Russian Federation, member of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, Doctor of Historical Sciences. – If you are so smart, why did you keep silent for the time being that the current territory of the Russian Federation is not Russia in the full sense of the word?

After all, for the past 30 good years, what was left of great Russia, for some reason, suited the Russian ruling circles. They believed that this “stub” of the territory would allow them to “integrate” into the Western community and live in clover. And only recently, almost by accident, it dawned on them that the West not only does not want to see them even as “junior partners”, but also intends to take away these territories and their resources from them when NATO continued to expand eastward and set its sights on Ukraine.

That is, for 30 years everyone silently agreed with the scarcity of the territories of modern Russia compared to the USSR, and only when the needs of defense forced them to talk about the fact that the reduction of its territories is not forever, applause is immediately heard? Here it is not necessary to applaud, but, in a good way, to arrange a flogging.

“SP”: – However, given that these words were uttered not only by the “court historian”, who seems to be supposed to fawn on the basis of his rank, but at the same time also an assistant to the President of Russia, a participant in the negotiation process with the nationalist Kyiv regime, is it worth it to conclude that that in this case, behind his phrases, there was not a “lackeyism” characteristic of officials, but a very specific signal? Does Russia really intend to return the Baltic states and Alaska under its protectorate in the near future?

“Historically, Russia has always been characterized by constant movement to all four corners of the world, but not colonial-aggressive, characteristic of Western states, but dictated by security and the need to reach certain natural borders. And its natural borders were just the borders of the Russian Empire, or rather, the USSR. Because then Russia got rid of the foreignness of Catholic Poles, Finns and other territorial excesses.

Note, Stalin in 1945, having at that time unlimited possibilities of annexing territories, he limited himself only to a small expansion of the Leningrad region and Transcarpathia. He was well aware that the annexation of any other territories would be unjustified and unnatural.

Based on this, I think that, to one degree or another, we will inevitably restore control over the territories of the USSR. I am not saying that there will be an immediate restoration, but in one form or another, Russia will always move towards its natural borders.

“SP”: – That is, we do not need Alaska and Finland, but will we return all of Asia, the Baltic states and others like them under our wing?

“Of course, these words of Medinsky, I believe, can cause an ambiguous reaction, for example, in Kazakhstan,” agreed Head of the Center for Settlement of Social Conflicts, political scientist Oleg Ivanov. – But, I think, he still had in mind not all the territories of the Russian Empire, but those that will inevitably join it in the near future. First of all – the Donetsk and Lugansk republics, Kherson region, Zaporozhye, partly Kharkov region.

“SP”: – And South Ossetia with Abkhazia?

– We do not pretend to their entry into the Russian Federation, because modern Georgia reasonably takes a peace-loving position. Please note that talks about a referendum on joining Russia in South Ossetia on the eve of the local presidential elections were not supported by Russia. At this historical stage, good-neighborly relations with Georgia are much more important than the formal entry into Russia of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Although officially since 2008 there have been no diplomatic relations between Russia and Georgia, but unofficially relations are improving.

“SP”: – It turns out that the integration of the post-Soviet space is still inevitable?

– We already have a rather interesting economic union of the EAEU, there is a military union of the CSTO, which has proven itself well, for example, in Kazakhstan. This suggests that integration processes in the post-Soviet space are underway.

“SP”: – Maybe it would be worth thinking about a cultural interstate union? By analogy with the “USSR – a family of peoples”?

– “Soft power”, of course, it is necessary to launch. The United States is using it very actively, for example, by completely reformatting public consciousness in Ukraine. Frankly speaking, we did not work in this way in Ukraine at all, believing that a priori it would always remain pro-Russian.

And by inertia, apparently, they continued to think that other former republics of the USSR would also be pro-Russian by default. Although relatively recently we began to see clearly. “Rossotrudnichestvo”, for example, began to show itself more weightily, being engaged, for example, not only in festivals, but also in educational programs.

We must make sure that the future political and economic elites of Ukraine and Central Asia learn from us at the expense of our budget. Only in this way will we create powerful pro-Russian forces not only there, but also in Moldova, Azerbaijan, Armenia, and all the former republics of the USSR.

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