Anti-Imperialism/Foreign Policy

The New Cold War: 21st Century Jacobin-Bolshevik America vs Russian Traditionalism

Actually, this interpretation of the relationship between the U.S.A. and Russia has a precedent in the work of Carl Schmitt. In “Nomos of the Earth,” Schmitt, a Hobbesian conservative, analyzed the Cold War as a conflict between two ideologically-driven forces, American liberal-democratic-capitalism and Soviet Marxism. Schmitt actually considered the Americans to be more extreme than the Soviets, therefore making the latter less objectionable from a traditional conservative perspective.

An unfortunate legacy of the Cold War is the negative attitude some American conservatives yet harbor toward Russia. Conditioned for decades to see Russia and the Soviet Union as synonymous, they still view post-communist Russia as a threat. They forget that Tsarist Russia was the most conservative great power, a bastion of Christian monarchy loathed by revolutionaries, Jacobins, and democrats. Joseph de Maistre was not alone among 19th-century conservatives in finding refuge and hope in Russia.

Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia is emerging once more as the leading conservative power. As we witnessed in Russia’s rescue of President Obama from the corner into which he had painted himself on Syria, the Kremlin is today, as the New York Times reports, “Establishing Russia’s role in world affairs not based on the dated Cold War paradigm but rather on its different outlook, which favors state sovereignty and status quo stability over the spread of Western-style democracy.”

In his own Times op-ed on Syria, Putin wrote, “It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it.” Sen. Robert A. Taft and Russell Kirk also doubted it.


4 replies »

  1. Lind is one of my favorite conservative authors and he does not disappoint. The fact that Mr. Lind has to defend Putin and Russia from so-called American ‘conservatives’ shows us how bankrupt the american conservative movement is. Just as the the Great Depression was catalyst for many disposed working class people to move to Stalin’s Russia, in hindsight a horrible mistake, we at least need a spiritual immigration to Russia. We need a conservative version of the Old Left, but endorsing Putin’s conservative agenda. I doubt that will happen, but miracles can happen.

  2. With the Sochi winter Olympics, sodomite politics and human rights nonsense we have the left being geared for a confrontation with Russia, because Putin is not PC enough, the utter insanity of it all leaves one speechless. Why in the name of Jove would you invade a nation for preventing sodomites from adopting or propagandizing children? What a reverse from Reagan and Gorbachev at Reykjavik. Agree with him or not at least Reagan had a semblance of rationality in his realpolitik, but according to Obama lets restart the Cold War with Russia over sodomites being unable to adopt kids, but suck up to with Iran and Saudi Arabia who kills them? Totally incomprehensible.

  3. Twenty-five years after the end of the Cold War, Rush Limbaugh finally realizes that the attitude “the only good Russian is a dead Russian” is perhaps overly simplistic.

    ” but according to Obama lets restart the Cold War with Russia over sodomites being unable to adopt kids, but suck up to with Iran and Saudi Arabia who kills them? Totally incomprehensible.”

    It’s understandable within the context of geopolitical power politics, and an analysis of the groups that make up the U.S. ruling class coalition. The human rights imperialists like Samantha Power want to spread the cultural values of Western elites throughout the world. There’s are large constituency for that among U.S. elites, obviously. But the neocons and American nationalists also want to extend the American empire right up to Russia’s border in Eastern Europe. The Israel-firsters are also anti-Russia because of the long history of Russian anti-semitism and the tendency of Russia to align with anti-Israel regimes in the Middle East like Syria.

    I don’t think the system is sucking up to Iran. The neocons would love to do another Iraq in Iran, and the Israel-firsters are zealously anti-Iranian. There are other factions of the ruling class and foreign policy elite that think such a war would be less than prudent, or not in American interests. There are still others who want control of Iranian oil. I think a big deterrent to war with Iran right now is public opinion, which has totally soured on the neocons’ wars. But the liberal cultural elites are hardly sympathetic to Iran’s socially conservative quasi-theocracy.

    The alliance with Saudi Arabia simply reflects the power of the oil industry and its pursuit of its own interests in the Middle East.

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