Voices from Russia

Sunday, 2 November 2008

World Looking For Change in the US

Surveys of people around the world suggest that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is much more popular than Republican rival John McCain. Some experts believe that underlying Mr Obama’s global popularity is a lack of understanding of his ideas. Barack Obama appears to be the preferred candidate of 42 percent of the people in the world, while only 12 percent would vote for McCain if they had the chance, according to a recent BBC survey of people in 22 countries. The latest Gallup opinion poll survey produced even more stunning results, revealing Mr Obama’s world preference by a margin of 4 to 1. But, a quick analysis of this phenomenon shows that the world does not expect the arrival of a new messiah in Mr Obama. It expects real change in the US.

In Europe, Mr Obama seems to be particularly popular. More than 80 percent of Germans, Frenchmen, and Dutch have a favourable view of him, according to a poll sponsored by the German Marshall Fund. By comparison, Mr McCain’s top score in Europe was in Portugal, where 35 percent would like him to be the next US president. In Russia, there’s been no similar public opinion poll taken recently, but, most Russians have taken notice of Mr McCain’s harsh rhetoric about this country, but, on the whole most Russians appear to be impartial to either US presidential choice.

Max Wolff, a lecturer at the New School in New York, in a quote by the AFP French news agency, said there is a huge gap between Mr Obama’s image abroad and the reality of his policy ideas. Outgoing President George W. Bush “has become the incarnation of the worst of America as a religious crazy, unsophisticated, and a heavily-armed child of the worst European peasantry”, Professor Wolff told AFP. On the other hand, he said, “Mr Obama’s image in Europe, for those who like America, is that he personifies all that is good in the United States”. For them, Mr Obama represents “a young, hopeful, multiracial society, an international creative child of Europe; useful and energetic”.

“But, the two visions are fantasy”, Professor Wolff said. “The reality has nothing to do with that, although both of those elements are in the US”. Mr Obama appears to both Americans and Europeans as someone who can bring about change, a theme that the Democratic candidate incessantly is harping on. But, in two major areas of responsibility, the economy and foreign affairs, Professor Wolff says not to expect any about-face. On foreign policy in particular, Obama counts amongst his advisers his vice-presidential running mate Joe Biden, “one of the proponents of war in Iraq”, and Zbigniew Brzeziński, the former national security adviser of President Jimmy Carter, who Professor Wolff calls a “hawk”. Overall, according to a notable French political expert, Mr Obama’s vagueness on many issues serves him well in Europe. It gives him a flexible image that allows people to project on him their own American dream.

31 October 2008

Yuri Reshetnikov

Voice of Russia World Service


Editor’s Note:

The presence of both Joseph Biden and Zbigniew Brzeziński as advisors to Barack Obama makes it impossible for any Orthodox Christian to vote in good conscience for the Obama ticket. This leaves an Orthodox Christian citizen of the US in a quandary. Both major parties endorse foreign policies in opposition to the Orthodox world. Both major parties endorse a worldview at variance with our faith.

Joseph Biden was greatly influenced by a Croatian Catholic priest who was a supporter of the Ustashi murderers, who killed 600,000 innocent Serbian Orthodox civilians in massacres during World War II. As a result, he is fanatically anti-Serbian and anti-Russian, and no Orthodox Christian should sit voluntarily in the same room as this ravening madman. Zbigniew Brzeziński is more complex, but, he is even more evil and vile, he merely has a smoother exterior. Mr Brzeziński has attempted, over the past thirty years, to insinuate an idea of the inter-war Polish fascists into American foreign policy.

This insane conception is known as Prometheanism. Its main facet is the fomenting of revolts in Russia to weaken and divide it, so that Poland could dominate the Western lands of Russia. For example, the interwar Poles attempted to seize the Little Russian lands during the turmoil of the Civil War, but, they were defeated as they were over-extended. This is nothing but the extension of the evil policies of the 17th and 18th century Polish Commonwealth, with its twin-pronged programme of ethnic-cleansing based on cultural Polonisation and the forcible imposition of the papal church upon all in their domains. Russia defeated this wicked cause in 1612, and we celebrate its defeat every year on 4 November, the Day of National Unity.

Brzeziński was the son of a Polish diplomat who loyally served the dictator Piłsudski and the corrupt junta of colonels that followed him. This is vitally important for the understanding of this Polish-American fascist fanatic. Piłsudski was the author of Prometheanism, and Brzeziński père was his loyal liegeman. The younger Brzeziński has followed the policy of Prometheanism faithfully, and he has infected all neocons, both of the Republican and Democratic parties with it. This hateful policy, which is not of American origin or of benefit to America, must be destroyed for the world to have peace.

Unfortunately, all know of John McCain’s unreasoning hatred of Russia and the Orthodox world, and his TV presenter running-mate only follows his lead (admittedly in her absolute and utter ignorance). They are, if it is possible, worse, unfortunately.

This is why no Orthodox Christian can vote for the major candidates. We cannot vote for hatred, murder, and the deliberate fomenting of violence as our foreign policy. God help us all.



A View from Moscow by Valentin Zorin… Gloomy Mood on Eve of US Elections


The USA will elect its new President next Tuesday. It’s hard to recall when it found itself in such a gloomy mood on the eve of presidential elections. An opinion poll shows 80 percent of Americans feel their country is moving in the wrong direction. John Zogby, the President and CEO of the opinion and polling research company Zogby International, said their confidence in the government and business structures shrank to what it was back in 1932. Most Americans say neither the President nor the Congress nor the business community are performing well. What seems most alarming is the refusal to pin hope on the arrival of a new team in the White House. One of the most knowledgeable experts, Professor Steven Horwitz of St Lawrence University said neither participant in the presidential race is qualified to settle outstanding problems. Senator McCain admits he knows a lot less about economics than he does about other things. Senator Obama is an even less experienced candidate.

As far as that goes, let’s wait till after the fourth. The United States will, for three more months yet, which is quite a bit of time, given today’s hustle and bustle, be led by a man the validity of whose word is questioned by four of every five Americans. Not one of his predecessors scored so low in popular confidence ratings. As many as 109 prominent American historians said, in a recent online poll, that the Bush Administration was the worst on record in America. A New York Times columnist, Thomas Friedman, said with ill-concealed irony that it looks as if George W Bush would rather pack up and leave Washington for his ranch in Texas. It isn’t that he feels bored, Mr Friedman said. It seems he has nothing to say about the future of the United States, which is why he’d like to ask the American people if he could go home. This makes it extremely difficult to run the USA, let alone settle highly pressing and highly complicated problems that are rightly blamed on the White House and on the business élite.

Today’s problems are rooted in the disastrous performance, blunders, and, for some of them, political incompetence of those who assumed the burden of responsibility for the fate of the United States eight years ago. The unwarranted decision to resume the arms race, the mismanagement of the surplus in the federal budget, and the inability to hold down the ballooning public debt undermined the mainstays of the economic prosperity of the USA. America will have to pay a dear price for all that… and it’ll be paying for all that today and tomorrow. A legacy of the Bush Administration, the 10 trillion dollar (270.519 trillion roubles. 7.839 trillion euros. 6.213 trillion UK pounds) public debt, will weigh down, as a heavy burden, on this and the next generation of Americans; it’ll worry the next US President and those who follow him to the Oval Office.

This unbearably heavy debt stands out as one of the unsettled problems of the Bush Administration. It’ll take very much time and effort to restore global confidence in the USA and turn that country into what it used to be, a respected member of the international community. Its unparalleled, almost brazen, attempts to saddle other nations with its own system of values and its own vision of democracy, disregard of international law, and the fundamental principles of the UN, the shamefully lost war in Iraq, the return to the methods and modalities of the Cold War, and, finally, its trademark policies of double-standards explain why America is no longer seen as a bastion of democracy and why a wave of anti-American feeling is rising high on this planet. It isn’t the economic problems and the lost war in Iraq, nor is it the divided ranks of the American allies, but it’s the worldwide wave of anti-American hatred that Colin Powell, one of the most respected and influential members of the American political élite, sees as the biggest problem of his country. What that political heavyweight said is more than an expression of a personal opinion; it amounts to an admission that the American policies of the last eight years are worthless. The loss of confidence in the USA is the sad result of the eight years of the Bush Administration.

A bad result!

31 October 2008

Valentin Zorin

Voice of Russia World Service


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