Voices from Russia

Sunday, 31 August 2008

MP Proposes that Russia Directly Respond to the Global Aspirations of Western Leaders Detrimental to Russian Interests

Fr Vsevolod Chaplin (1968- ), deputy head of the MP DECR

The Moscow Patriarchate proposed that Russia should tenaciously defend its political system in the international arena and accused the West of blatantly using double standards in its policy. “In spite of all their talk concerning their adherence to international law and their respect of self-determination, certain (Western: Interfax) countries have always acted solely in their own interests and apply quite contrary principles in different cases”, Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, the deputy head of the MP Department for External Church Relations, said in a broadcast televised on the Orthodox TV channel Soyuz (Union).

He thought that Russia’s most pressing task is to defend “its free and untrammelled choice of a political system, and we should fearlessly tell the West, ‘You live as you like, and we will live as we like’. We should form our own political system and our own society, fixing its laws and rules in ways that are natural and organic for our nation, its destiny, its way of thinking, and our historical traditions”. Fr Vsevolod urged all of us to realise that “all talk about shared human values, and declarations stating that we can embrace and kiss all other nations of the world in peace after disarming ourselves are unrealistic, and they do not reflect practical politics. We should have a strong military and state, for we would then have the will and ability to repel any invasion against our way of life, our interests in the world, and our ability to influence events developing in the world”.

He emphasised that Russia “will never be a subservient and dependent player in the world system, it will always put forward, both to its people and to neighbouring nations as well, its approach to historical development”, and he expressed the opinion that the orientation of contemporary Western society “is a direction leading nowhere. It’s impossible for a society to survive if it’s deprived of faith as the foundation of public life, if it’s deprived of any purpose except consumption, and if it embraces the ideal of imposing a particular form of democracy all around the globe simply because it is expedient for American banks, Western governments, and the world economic and media élite”, Fr Vsevolod said.

He pointed up that Russia can offer the world another way, saying “We will do it. However, we need to remain strong, to be determined to say ‘no’ to everyone who tries to spread their influence in the world at our expense by infringing upon our interests”. Fr Vsevolod also criticised the attempt of the West to “violently impose its ideology on all nations. The West believes, and President Bush stated it clearly, that only one type of democracy, and one form of participation in taking decisions, the Western way, is obligatory and should be imposed on all nations and all countries!”

He noted that western countries were “not ashamed to apply quite different standards in various situations. We remember very well how the West backed up the right of national self-determination in Kosovo; it was only few months ago, then, the idea of territorial integrity was absent and in essence rejected. Today, the West insists that the principle of territorial integrity of Georgia must be defended at all costs”. According to Fr Vsevolod, the West “didn’t hesitate to introduce its troops into many countries where the local population did not request such aid, in which no referenda or votes were held on the question, and, sometimes, there were no parliamentary decisions authorising the deployment of American or NATO troops to this or that country. In this case, no one pays attention to democracy, and legal principle is powerless before the idea of national interest and the promotion of Western political systems and ‘democracy’ as President Bush and leaders of other Western countries claim so very often today”.

He also pointed out that Russian peacemakers in South Ossetia were accused “of not being neutral and thus they should be changed to forces from NATO or the EU. Are these countries, indeed, more neutral? These are countries that involve themselves in the conflict on one side, they are countries that haven’t even referred to the brutality committed against the people of South Ossetia, but, now, they sorrow over the bloodshed there!” Fr Vsevolod added.

29 August 2008




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