Tag Archives: Russia

Now’s The Perfect Time For Global Cyberspace & Pandemic Treaties

By Andrew Korybko (via One World)

There are a multitude of problems that require multilateral solutions which have hitherto remained unresolved due to the lack of the political will and trust that are needed to make progress on them.

Two visionary proposals were recently floated for promulgating global cyberspace and pandemic treaties. The first was presented by Russian President Vladimir Putin last Friday while he chaired a Security Council meeting to review the draft Basic Principles of State Policy of the Russian Federation on International Information Security while the second was introduced on Wednesday by 24 world leaders who wrote a topical article that was published by many leading newspapers. The general ideas put forth by both will now be discussed before explaining why now’s the perfect time for the international community to seriously consider them. 

President Putin reminded Russian officials that their country was among the first to table such an initiative at the turn of the century, which he said is more relevant than ever nowadays because cyberspace has become the scene of many emerging threats. He suggested “universal and free-for-all rules on the responsible behavior of states” in this domain that would ensure “the inviolability of the digital sovereignty of states”. This, the Russian leader claimed, would “contribute to the formation of a global system for the protection of the international information landscape.”

As for the second proposal, world leaders such as the British, French, German, and World Health Organization ones compared their idea to the formation of the post-World War II multilateral order. They said that “we must seize this opportunity and come together as a global community for peaceful co-operation that extends beyond this crisis”, suggesting that the world “be better prepared to predict, prevent, detect, assess and effectively respond to pandemics in a highly co-ordinated fashion.” To this end, they urged the international community to improve coordination in data sharing and the distribution of vaccines and personal protective equipment. 

Both ideas deserve to be seriously considered at this pivotal moment in global history. International Relations are presently in the midst of full-spectrum paradigm-changing processes as the world’s uncoordinated attempt to contain COVID-19 accelerated a myriad of preexisting latent trends that are revolutionizing literally everything as they simultaneouslyconverge. Humanity is an historic moment whereby the counterproductive zero-sum mentality of the past centuries will either be indefinitely perpetuated with calamitous consequences or everyone will finally learn to embrace the win-win philosophy of mutually beneficial cooperation. 

No single country can go it alone in today’s “COVID World Order” since every member of the international community is in it together no matter what some irresponsible voices may claim to the contrary. There are a multitude of problems that require multilateral solutions which have hitherto remained unresolved due to the lack of the political will and trust that are needed to make progress on them. First and foremost among them are combating epidemiological threats and ensuring cyber security, among other pressing threats such as climate change, thwarting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and combating terrorism. 

With the global economy unprecedentedly becoming more dependent on online platforms due to the lockdowns that most countries implemented in response to COVID-19, it therefore follows that global cyberspace and pandemic treaties go hand in hand in this day and age. The best-case scenario would therefore be that responsible international leaders build upon the recent momentum to seriously discuss both of them in global fora, after which negotiations could commence between interested parties to decide upon the optimal way to proceed. 

The most ambitious timeline would be to reach some sort of agreement, even if only a tentative one, by the end of the year. Continual progress to this end would also reassure the global population that their leaders have their best interests in mind during these chaotic and uncertain times. People would see that the world is finally coming together at its most critical moment to learn from past mistakes and thus guarantee that the future will hopefully be brighter for every one of them and their children. The whole world would benefit from global cyberspace and pandemic pacts, which would restore a semblance of stability to the international system.

Are Vaccines The Real Driving Force Behind The Latest Donbass Destabilization?

By Andrew Korybko (via One World)

Observers are in a passionate debate over what’s really driving the latest Donbass destabilization, with the most prominent hypotheses being either domestic Ukrainian politics or the US’ regional geostrategic ambitions, but the argument can also compellingly be made that the concept of so-called “vaccine nationalism” is playing a largely under-discussed role in events.

The Two Main Hypotheses

Donbass is on the brink of major destabilization once again, yet observers are in disagreement over what’s really driving the latest events. Some believe that domestic Ukrainian politics are to blame and that Kiev’s ruling party aims to provoke a regional crisis in order to distract from its plummeting popularity. Evidence in support of this hypothesis includes the government’s recent witch hunt against opposition figures and its draconian banning of many Russian-language media outlets in the country. President Zelensky also promulgated a decree late last month which practically declares war on Russia and explicitly threatens Crimea. The other theory about the US’ regional geostrategic ambitions is backed up by the its ominous statement of support for Ukraine as well as Washington’s preexisting motives for destabilizing Moscow’s western periphery, which prompted Russia to promise its own ominously support for its passport holders in the country. Both theories have a lot of truth to them, but they’re missing a crucial component which could complete the strategic picture. 

Vaccine Diplomacy” 

That’s the concept of so-called “vaccine nationalism”, which refers to countries’ efforts to promote their COVID-19 vaccines abroad while also sometimes simultaneously thwarting their competitors’ selfsame attempts. In the current context, Russia’s “vaccine diplomacy” of exporting Sputnik V across the world to save lives, restore the economy, and also for the supplementary purpose of expanding its multipolar influence is on the brink of a globally game-changing success after Politico reported over the weekend that “More EU Countries Eye Separate Deals With Russia For Sputnik Vaccine”. This was preceded just a few days prior by a related report about how “Macron And Merkel Discuss Vaccine Cooperation With Russia”. The unmistakable trend is that Europe is quickly learning that it needs Russia more than the reverse despite American pressure to convince them to the contrary, which explains why CNN is freaking out so much that it recently published a scaremongering piece about how “Europe Is Torn Over Whether To Take Putin’s Help On Vaccines”

The Donbass Dilemma

It’s against this strategic context that the latest destabilization in Donbass is unfolding. Each side blames one another for provoking it, but an objective assessment of the situation very strongly suggests that neither Russia nor the Russian-friendly rebels of Eastern Ukraine are responsible. After all, they’ve been trying to peacefully implement the Minsk Accords for the past few years, but it’s US-backed Kiev which has obstinately refused to make any tangible progress in this direction, both for domestic nationalist reasons and those related to American regional geostrategic ambitions as was earlier argued. Ukraine is also being crushed by the COVID-19 pandemic but isn’t being provided any real help from its American “ally”, which is why some in the country have looked eastward to Russia for much-needed relief. This inspired me to write about how “Sputnik V Is The Antidote To, Not Russia’s Weapon Of, Hybrid War In Ukraine” at the beginning of the year even though it’s extremely unlikely nowadays that Kiev will agree to cooperate with Moscow in this respect. 

The US’ Strategic Failures

Not only has the US failed in its grand strategic goal of “isolating” Russia over the past seven years as seen by Moscow’s successful “balancing” act all across Eurasia that was commenced in response, but it’s also proven itself unable to convince Berlin to sabotage Nord Stream II by incorporating it into the ongoing German Hybrid War on Russia. The Central European country, to its credit, continues to pragmatically engage with Russia on several issues of significance, including Nord Stream II and most recently exploring the possibility of purchasing Sputnik V, though its silence in the face of the latest Donbass destabilization worryingly risks being interpreted as a carthe blanche by Kiev. Nevertheless, the silver lining is that Germany hasn’t condemned Russia for the recent escalations there like others have, and this observation greatly concerns the US. Considering the speed with which Russia’s “vaccine diplomacy” is attracting new partners Europe, it can’t be ruled out that the US wants to provoke a crisis in Eastern Ukraine so as to make Russian-EU Sputnik V cooperation politically impossible. 

Towards A Russian-EU Rapprochement?

This shouldn’t sound all that surprising to the reader if they take the time to reflect on the insight that was just shared. “Vaccine diplomacy” is the quickest way to enter into strategic partnerships with other states or comprehensively reinforce those that already exist. Russia’s European interests in this respect rest with its desire to gently influence those countries to reduce and then ultimately lift the US-led sanctions regime that was imposed after Crimea’s reunification in 2014. Moscow would also like the European countries to show more consideration for its legitimate security interests by not rolling out the red carpet for NATO’s US-led unprecedented expansion along Russia’s western periphery. These two US-led developments in recent years – sanctions and military expansion – caused a crisis in Russian-EU relations, one for which Brussels bears partial responsibility because it willingly went along with it in response to Washington’s pressure. It didn’t have to do that, and its obsequiousness to American strategic demands made everything much worse. 

Russia’s Soft Power Plans

Perhaps the most immediate strategic importance of Russia’s “vaccine diplomacy” is that it could win countless hearts and minds in Europe and therefore create a favorable grassroots social environment for facilitating those governments’ eventual lifting of their anti-Russian sanctions and their gradual rolling back of NATO’s US-led military expansion in the region. After all, it might soon be the case that Sputnik V is responsible for saving an untold number of lives in the continent in parallel with facilitating the bloc’s economic reopening, both of which would greatly improve the lives of the EU’s hundreds of millions of citizens. It might be very difficult for those governments to justify their decision to continue “punishing” Russia through economic and military means after Moscow saved them from the worst of World War C‘s ravages, which scares the US to no end since it rightly assumes that this might lead to the irreversible decline of its hegemonic influence there. It thus logically follows that the US has an urgent interest in provoking a crisis to make this scenario politically impossible. 

Concluding Thoughts

Putting everything together, it can compellingly be argued that while domestic Ukrainian politics and the US’ regional geostrategic ambitions play very important roles in driving the recent destabilization in Donbass, any discussion of these developments is incomplete without incorporating the influence of “vaccine nationalism”. The US will do whatever it can to prevent Russian-EU Sputnik V cooperation since it fears that this would greatly reduce its hegemonic influence over the continent. Provoking a crisis in Ukraine, which was already boiling for a long time already even before last year’s COVID-19 outbreak, could help advance this agenda by making it politically impossible for the EU to purchase Russia’s vaccines. It would be very challenging for any country to go forward with such plans in the face of unprecedented American pressure to “reconsider” following what they’d be told was so-called “Russian aggression in Ukraine” even though Moscow wouldn’t be responsible for sparking any potential conflict. That could in turn prolong America’s fading hegemony over the EU.

The DNI’s Russian Meddling Report Denigrates Dissident Americans

By Andrew Korybko (via One World)

The Director of National Intelligence published a report on Tuesday claiming that the American Intelligence Community has “high confidence” in its provocative assessment that President Putin “was aware of and probably directed Russia’s influence operations” aimed at meddling in the US’ 2020 elections, including by relying on a proxy network of supposedly foreign intelligence-linked US contacts who “denigrat[ed] President Biden and the Democratic Party” in parallel with supporting former President Trump’s suspicions of mail-in ballots and social media censorship among other topics, which in essence amounts to US spies unprecedentedly attempting to intimidate dissident Americans.

The Dystopian American Hellhole

Biden’s America is descending into the dystopian hellhole that the author accurately predicted it would become last November, but at a much faster pace than even he thought was possible as evidenced by the conclusions reached in the Director of National Intelligence’s latest report about alleged Russian meddling in the US’ 2020 elections. The 15-page document provocatively assesses with “high confidence” that President Putin “was aware of and probably directed Russia’s influence operations” aimed at shaping the outcome of America’s democratic process, including by relying on a proxy network of supposedly foreign intelligence-linked US contacts who “denigrat[ed] President Biden and the Democratic Party” in parallel with supporting former President Trump’s suspicions of mail-in ballots and social media censorship among other topics. This shockingly amounts to US spies unprecedentedly attempting to intimidate dissident Americans. 

In The Words Of America’s Own Spies

So as not to be accused of sharing so-called “fake news”, what follows are pertinent excerpts from the report:

We have high confidence in our assessment; Russian state and proxy actors who all serve the Kremlin’s interests worked to affect US public perceptions in a consistent manner…We assess that President Putin and other senior Russian officials were aware of and probably directed Russia’s influence operations against the 2020 US Presidential election…The primary effort the IC uncovered revolved around a narrative-that Russian actors began spreading as early as 2014-alleging corrupt ties between President Biden, his family, and other US officials and Ukraine. Russian intelligence services relied on Ukraine-linked proxies and these proxies’ networks-including their US contacts-to spread this narrative to give Moscow plausible deniability of their involvement.

Throughout the election, Russia’s online influence actors sought to amplify mistrust in the electoral process by denigrating mail-in ballots, highlighting alleged irregularities, and accusing the Democratic Party of voter fraud…Russian state media, trolls, and online proxies, including those directed by Russian intelligence, published disparaging content about President Biden, his family, and the Democratic Party, and heavily amplified related content circulating in US media, including stories centered on his son. These influence actors frequently sought out US contributors to increase their reach into US audiences. In addition to election-related content, these online influence actors also promoted conspiratorial narratives about the COVID-19 pandemic, made allegations of social media censorship, and highlighted US divisions surrounding protests about racial justice. 

Russian online influence actors generally promoted former President Trump and his commentary, including repeating his political messaging on the election results; the presidential campaign; debates; the impeachment inquiry; and, as the election neared, US domestic crises…Moscow’s range of influence actors uniformly worked to denigrate President Biden after his entrance into the race. Throughout the primaries and general election campaign, Russian influence agents repeatedly spread unsubstantiated or misleading claims about President Biden and his family’s alleged wrongdoing related to Ukraine…Even after the election, Russian online influence actors continued to promote narratives questioning the election results and disparaging President Biden and the Democratic Party.”

21st-Century McCarthyism

As can be clearly concluded from the above excerpts, America’s own spies openly accused dissident Americans of being Russian intelligence assets – if not outright agents – actively participating in a foreign influence operation aimed at meddling in their country’s elections. This determination was reached solely as a result of their public criticisms of Biden, the Democrat Party, mail-in ballots, the politicization of the COVID-19 pandemic (described by the author as World War C), objectively existing social media censorship policies (including the undeniable example of former President Trump’s deplatforming), Antifa and “Black Lives Matter’s” Hybrid War of Terror onAmerica, and the self-professed regime change “conspiracy” by a “well-connected cabal of powerful people” that Time Magazine proudly bragged about the Democrats successfully executing against Trump. 

In other words, dissident Americans’ peaceful and responsible exercise of their constitutionally enshrined freedom of speech – including by repeating what their own president at the time was saying – is being held against them as supposed proof that they were secretly meddling in their elections on behalf of Russia. This can only be described as 21st-century McCarthyism since the spy faction of America’s permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracies (“deep state”) is once again actively denigrating the country’s dissidents and therefore quite literally meddling in their own country’s democratic process despite ironically accusing Moscow of doing the exact same thing. Not only is this meant to intimidate all those who dare to publicly voice their opposition to the ruling Democrat Party and its proxies (including the RINOs), but it’s also intended to revive the debunked conspiracy theory that Trump was actually a “Russian agent/asset”. 

Concluding Thoughts

America is in for dark days ahead as Biden’s dystopian hellhole becomes a reality even quicker than some of the most critical voices such as the author himself could have predicted. The US’ spy agencies are sending the clearest signal yet that they’ll politically repress all those who dare to publicly oppose the ruling Democrat Party and its proxies. This could predictably take the form of first harassing them with their taxes and then perhaps calling them into local FBI field offices to be interrogated, after which they might even have false espionage or other related charges filed against them in order to send a chilling message to all others. This unprecedented attack against American dissidents is arguably much worse than anything that the country ever experienced during the era of traditional McCarthyism, and it won’t improve anytime soon since the Democrats are solidly in control of the “deep state” and eager to snuff out all dissent whenever and wherever it arises.

Tom Cotton’s Anti-Chinese Containment Strategy Is Really Cunning

By Andrew Korybko (via One World)

The office of Republican Senator Tom Cotton published a comprehensive containment strategy against China last month that cunningly proposes a series of complementary coalitions aimed towards this end, including in the technological and institutional spheres, which essentially amounts to the creation of a modern-day Iron Curtain if successfully implemented.

Biden’s “Deep State” Balancing Act

President Biden’s strategy towards China increasingly appears to be predicated on expanding his predecessor’s containment policy, albeit in a more multilateral fashion than former President Trump’s mostly unilateral one. This is evidenced by his keynote speech at the State Department last month which led to my conclusion that “Alliances, Democracy, And Values Will Disguise American Aggression”. This was entirely foreseeable too since I earlier predicted that “An ‘Alliance Of Democracies’ Might Be America’s Next Grand Strategic Move”. The behind-the-scenes decision-making basis for this is that Biden must “balance” between competing “deep state” factions in his country’s permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracies that are split between those who embrace Trump’s “America First” international outlook and the liberal-globalists who are more closely connected to former President Obama. I elaborated on the dynamic between them and their possible compromise with respect to more cleverly “containing” China in exchange for cautiously re-engaging with Iran in my related analysis late last year about “Deep State Wars: Trump vs. Biden on China & Iran”. 

Targeted Decoupling And The Long Economic War”

Republican Senator Tom Cotton, a notorious anti-China hawk, published a comprehensive containment strategy against China last month that was written by members of his office. It cunningly proposes a series of complementary coalitions aimed towards this end, including in the technological and institutional spheres, which essentially amounts to the creation of a modern-day Iron Curtain if successfully implemented. This might possibly happen considering that it largely aligns with the Biden Administration’s multilateral plans in this respect. The 84-page document is titled “Beat China: Targeted Decoupling And The Long Economic War”, and a summary of it can be read at Breitbart here. To be sure, it’s not all bad, since many of his proposals about diversifying the US’ economic partners and reshoring its businesses are sound in principle, as are his suggestions for stockpiling rare earth minerals, semiconductor chips, and other materials of national security importance. So too are his ideas about modernizing regulations and the tax code, investing more in research and development, and improving the federal government’s efficiency. They all make logical sense. 

Cotton’s Anti-Chinese Containment Coalition

The problem, however, is that he also basically wants to wage a global Hybrid War on China. His rationale is that this is the only possible recourse for America after its prior policy of attempting to influence domestic political changes there through decades of economic engagement failed to achieve any tangible dividends. In his own words, “this generational effort at engagement was an experiment to see whether greater economic integration would generate political change in China”, which he rightly argues has been unsuccessful. Instead of abandoning that consistently failed policy of meddling in China’s internal affairs, he wants to double down on it but in a craftier way through the establishment of semiconductor, 5G, and data-sharing blocs as crucial pillars of the larger “American-led, China-excluded trading order with trusted nations in the Indo-Pacific” that he proposes. In parallel with that, he advises that “The United States should launch a similar effort with respect to the United Kingdom and the European Union, America’s top export market.” The grand strategic outcome is therefore the creation of a massive anti-Chinese containment coalition along the Eurasian Rimland. 

Color Revolution Catalysts

This isn’t just for prestige’s sake, but is predicated on his expectation that “Chinese citizens willing to accept an increasingly heavy-handed authoritarian state in exchange for a higher standard of living may think twice if growth slows or stagnates. As a result, the CCP fears that declines in exports, growth, and employment could pose political liabilities.” In other words, the interconnected semiconductor, 5G, and data-sharing blocs that he wants to create within his envisioned anti-Chinese Eurasian Rimland containment coalition are supposed to eventually harm China’s economic growth when paired with a more aggression sanctions and tariff policy, which he hopes will in turn create fertile ground for a series of Color Revolutionsthere that could ultimately make the infamous Tiananmen Square Color Revolution attempt look like child’s play in hindsight. The proposed containment coalition would also prospectively expand worldwide all across the Global South according to his vision of the US “leveraging development finance and foreign aid”. Ironically, this is exactly what the US accuses China of doing against its own interests, so it’s curious that Cotton is embracing this same strategy. 

Economic Warfare

According to him, “Mobilizing these powerful institutions can support a U.S. strategy for targeted decoupling by incentivizing foreign countries to resist Chinese entreaties, such as participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, and supporting American companies in strategic sectors.” These efforts will be made all the more effective if US spy agencies follow his advice to expand operations against the People’s Republic. His report importantly suggests that “the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) should expand its collection efforts relating to China’s economy, including IP theft, the corporate and capital structures of Chinese firms, the shareholders of China’s strategic companies, and technological developments within Chinese companies.” Although he claims that this proposal is being made defensively in order to identify possible targets to sanction in response to alleged intellectual property theft, the insight obtained through these operations could very easily be abused for offensive purposes to undercut China’s economic competitiveness and meddle in its many Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) partnerships. 

Institutional Intrigue

The aggressive activities of this global anti-Chinese containment coalition are intended to be upheld by the international institutions that Cotton says that the US should either reclaim or replace if the former isn’t possible. According to his proposal, “America must fight to reverse China’s gains in these institutions and build new, separate organizations of willing and like-minded partners when these organizations cannot be reclaimed. With these organizations out of Beijing’s hands, the United States can ensure that international rules and standards are written to support emerging technologies where America is naturally suited to prevail.” Once again, this is the exact same form of Hybrid Warfare that the US accuses China of waging, making one wonder whether it was ever really guilty as charged or if the US invented those accusations in order to justify itself doing the same thing later. Altogether, Cotton’s grand strategy is one where the US leads a Eurasian Rimland coalition that brings together several China-excluding technology blocs, expands through the strategic leveraging of development finance and foreign aid, and is “legitimized” through reclaimed or replaced international institutions. 

Concluding Thoughts

Skeptics might immediately dismiss Cotton’s global anti-Chinese containment proposal as politically unrealistic to implement under Biden’s Democrat presidency, but such a stance ignores the fact that the incumbent president convincingly intends to build upon his predecessor’s policy in this respect, albeit in a much more multilateral manner. This insight very strongly suggests that Cotton’s proposal might actually be well received by the Biden Administration since its multilateral vision of a series of complementary coalitions closely aligns with the ruling party’s stated policy of relying more on international alliances to advance American interests abroad. For this reason, it would be a major mistake for observers to dismiss Cotton’s suggestions out of hand since there’s a real chance that at least some of them might be implemented by the US across the next four years. Everything is already moving in that direction without any credible evidence that this trajectory will seriously change in the future. With this in mind, China would do well to consider the most effective strategies for responding to this scenario, ideally in a multilateral manner after closely consulting with its partners.

Keith Olbermann Is Wrong: There’s No Such Thing As A ‘Stain’ Of Ethnic Heritage

By Andrew Korybko (via One World)

Popular liberal commentator Keith Olbermann dangerously risked lending credibility to the toxic ideology of Neo-Nazi racists after tweeting on Monday that “I’ve lived my entire life with the stain of Russian heritage in my family”.

Olbermann’s Odious Tweet Pushes Neo-Nazi Racist Theories

American liberals began embracing Russophobia, which is unquestionably a form of racism, during the 2016 election after Hillary Clinton ridiculously claimed that the Eurasian Great Power was secretly helping her opponent. This disgusting trend continues in the present day but got much worse than ever before after popular liberal commentator Keith Olbermann told his over one million Twitter followers on Monday that “I’ve lived my entire life with the stain of Russian heritage in my family”. This surprised many observers not only because they had hitherto thought that he was of German ancestry, but also because it dangerously risked lending credibility to the toxic ideology of Neo-Nazi racists who claim that there’s such a thing as a “stain of ethnic heritage”. After all, it was none other than Adolf Hitler himself who notoriously spread such sentiments through his infamous Mein Kampf and subsequent speeches, ultimately going as far as carrying out a genocide against millions of Slavs including Russians due to his belief that they were “subhumans”. 

I’m An American-Pole Who’s Occasionally Abused Because Of My Roots

RT’s Nebojsa Malic wrote an insightful response to this scandal highlighting the liberal media’s double standards towards racism, but some further commentary of a more personal nature is needed in order for readers to better understand just how irresponsible Olbermann’s racist comment is. Those of us who aren’t White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASPs) have most likely been victimized by bigotry at least once in our lives. I’m An American of Polish-Slovenian descent and am occasionally targeted by online trolls because of my ancestry. The most common attack is to claim that it’s supposedly impossible for me to have any friendly feelings towards Russia because of my Polish roots, which very strongly insinuates the racist theory that all members of a given ethnicity share the exact same political and other views by virtue of their blood. In other words, I’m made to feel as though my Polish heritage is a “stain” which somehow forever prevents me from loving Russia, thus supposedly predisposing me to be its eternal enemy like those trolls think that all Poles are.

Was Olbermann Bullied For His Russian Roots While Growing Up?

It’s not yet clear at this point, but it might have been the case that Olbermann was also victimized by bullies all throughout his life who could have claimed something similar, perhaps telling him that it’s impossible for him to love America because of his Russian roots that he hadn’t previously disclosed in public until now (provided that he told others about them in his personal life or they somehow found out through other means). I very strongly disagree with practically everything that Olbermann supports, but that doesn’t give me nor anyone else the right to abuse him with bigoted language just because of his ethnic roots, the same as it doesn’t give anyone else the right to do the same to me if they disagree with my analyses. Nevertheless, having experienced this quite frequently (more so over the past few years than nowadays thankfully), I understand why he might have been made to feel “guilty” for the way that he was born, but he’s weak and wrong for submitting to that idea. Instead of being ashamed of his heritage and describing it as a “stain”, he should be proud of it. 

Religious And Secular Arguments Against Racist Theories

Nobody should ever feel guilty for their ethnic heritage. If you’re religious, then it’s common to believe that God made you that way for a reason in line with His will, which most faithful folks believe is perfect in its own way even if we humans are incapable of fully understanding it. To believe that the inheritance of a cultural legacy is somehow a “stain” implies the fallibility of God and is arguably blasphemous according to many interpretations. For those of you who aren’t religious, then you probably attribute it to a cosmic coincidence or something along those lines for having you inherit the ethnicity that you did. Even in that case, though, there’s nothing wrong with that. All cultures are unique and precious, and there shouldn’t ever be a so-called “hierarchy” among them. Moreover, being of a certain ethnicity doesn’t mean that someone shares the same political views as their co-ethnics, whether nowadays or all throughout history. After all, political views are formed by one’s own free will and aren’t passed along through genes no matter what some racist theorists claim. 

Political Views ≠ Ethnic Heritage

Olbermann is clearly opposed to the policies of the present Russian government and especially its leader, President Putin, but he must understand that those feelings should be separate from his views about the rich heritage that he shares. It’s entirely possible to criticize some political aspect about Russia today while still being proud of being Russian. The same holds true for me: I constructively criticize Polish foreign policy at times but am immensely proud of my Polish heritage and will never apologize for it or dare to disrespect my co-ethnics by calling it a “stain” no matter how much that would please my racist trolls. All human beings have free will, and it’s impossible for every person of a specific demographic to share the exact same political views as their peers. Claiming otherwise is dangerous because it provokes discriminatory actions and even violence against members of that group out of the mistaken basis that attacking them somehow equates to attacking by proxy the state that they allegedly all support. 

Why Are Racist Ideologies Still So Popular Today?

Russians, Poles, and all others throughout history have at one point or another been victimized by this racist ideology which regrettably continues to survive into the present day. Political radicals sometimes feel powerless to effect the change that they desire so they instead lash out at people who they believe superficially represent the object of their hatred. Those who hate Russia attack Russians, just like those who hate Poland attack Poles, and so on and so forth. In their warped minds, they’ve truly convinced themselves that members of those groups embody everything that they detest about their political representatives. Therefore, they think that they’re justified to do whatever they want against them since “the ends justify the means”, especially if harming innocent people of an ethnic group is expected to somehow harm their government by proxy or at least express “dissent” against it. It can’t be overstated just how dangerous of an ideology this is, and it’s terrible that Olbermann risked granting it legitimacy by talking about the self-described “stain” of his Russian heritage. 

Olbermann’s Wrong, But It’s Equally Wrong To “Cancel” Him

I don’t know Olbermann so I’d like to assume that he was also at one time a victim of bigoted abuse but was too weak to resist the bullies unlike me. Over time, he might have embraced their racism and became a self-hating Russian in order to appease them, just like I could have easily become a self-hating Pole. Either way, while that might explain his racist comment, it certainly doesn’t excuse it. There’s no such thing as a “stain” of ethnic heritage. His political dislike of the current Russian government and perhaps some or even all of its prior ones has nothing to do with the culture that he inherited which is intimately a part of him. Anyone of Russian heritage who feels guilty for being Russian hates themselves, the same as can be said about anyone of any other heritage feeling the same about their own, let alone calling it a “stain”. Having explained all of this, I don’t believe that Olbermann should be “canceled”. I actually support spreading his racist comment far and wide for educational purposes in order to discredit the hateful ideology that he consciously or unwittingly represents. 

An Impassioned Appeal To The Alt-Media Community

All subsequent reporting about his tweet must debunk the implied claim that political views are universally shared by all members of a certain ethnicity and passed down through their genes. I know what it’s like to be on the receiving end of such abuse and therefore very passionately believe that it has to stop. Anyone who ever sees someone else embracing this ideology must publicly confront them, especially if they disagree with the victim’s politics. We need to show that we’re in this together and won’t accept the normalization of false racist theories in the Alt-Media Community. Everyone has the right to respectfully express their dissent about whatever it might be, but they mustn’t abuse others who they disagree with, especially not on the basis of their ethnic heritage. Every person is unique, and while there are indeed political trends that some groups tend to embrace (e.g. most Russians are fiercely patriotic and proudly anti-fascist), that’s due to social and other factors, not ethnic ones. Olbermann is dead wrong, but hopefully others can learn from his racist fallacy.