Originally posted on February 2, 2019:
I think that it’s already time for me to quickly reply to some of the feedback that I’ve been getting to a few of my posts. Enough time has passed. In general, I’m a little proud of these posts because I’ve been able to come up with satisfactory predictions and explanations, in my view. When it comes to the Russian society, it was very easy to explain what has been happening and to make predictions. It’s because, unlike some other people, I have an interest in the history of different societies. I can read, I can learn, I can make comparisons, and I can make predictions. Apparently, Carroll Quigley’s writing is interesting for right-wingers in the USA because they think that it’s in tune with their beliefs. Therefore, they promote and digest most of what he wrote, and they like to reinforce their right-wing, often irrational, conspiracy theories with it. But something that I noticed about them is that they lack good knowledge of history. They’re not interested in history, or in other societies, or in processes, or in systems. They’re only interested in coming up with conspiracy theories and in how these conspiracies allegedly affect them and their “nation”. Therefore, the predictions that they make, if they even attempt to make them, based on Quigley’s writing, are rather disappointing. They take what Quigley wrote, and they can’t come up with their own predictions based on what he wrote because they seemingly can’t think outside the box or because some of them are anti-communist, neo-isolationist researchers of the American establishment such as G. Edward Griffin. On the internet, I’ve yet to find anything close to the predictions and explanations that I’ve been able to make. Anyway, Russian Civilization had the state as its instrument of expansion from about 1,500 AD to about 1,900 AD. In 1,900 AD, the state ceased to function as an instrument of expansion in Russia, it became institutionalized, and Russian Civilization entered upon the Age of Conflict. Interestingly, only two decades after Russian Civilization entered the Age of Conflict, it got its first post-expansion empire, which was the Soviet Union. Because of the distress that took place in Russia from 1900 to 1920, the political unit known as the Bolshevik Party was able to conquer almost all of the territory of Russian Civilization. The Bolsheviks created the military empire known as the Soviet Union, and they brought unity and new achievements to Russian Civilization for several decades. The Soviet Union disintegrated after 1985, after about two decades of decay, and Russian Civilization got thrown into a second period of disunity and conflict, which is continuing. So, when it comes to Russia, only a few questions are worth asking. First, how long will the current period of conflict and disunity last before a new post-expansion empire gets established on the territory of Russian Civilization? Second, what political unit will establish this post-expansion empire? Will an outside invader come in and conquer the weak Russia, with its demoralized population, like when the Mongols (Yuan) conquered China or when the Turks (Mughals) conquered India? Or will a new, so-called revolution take place, like in 1917? It’s when a party of intellectual, decisive, and militant revolutionaries (the Bolsheviks) was able to seize power in Petrograd and then go on to conquer the rest of the territory of Russian Civilization in the so-called Russian Civil War. By the way, I think that the smartest thing that the Bolsheviks did after coming to power in Petrograd was creating the Red Army, with which they were able to defeat enemies on the territory of Russia. Because of what they were able to acquire and to loot during the Russian Civil War, the Bolsheviks were able to finance the economic growth of the Soviet Union from the 1920s to the 1940s. In my view, this is all that is worth considering when it comes to the current, disorganized territory that is called Russia. Another thing that would be interesting to do is to go over a few of the disagreements that I have with what Quigley wrote in his books, mainly in ‘Tragedy and Hope’ (1966). One of the characteristics of Western thought is its disinterest in, and dislike of, the outside world. In Medieval times, people in Western Europe thought of the outside world as a sea of monsters and myths, and this situation has changed little or not at all since then because Western culture and the Western outlook have continued to exist. When it comes to Russian history, Quigley, as a fairly good and rational Western historian, got things right, up to the year 1917. He wrote on page 11, “The first period of expansion, covering 1500-1900, had just begun to change into an Age of Conflict (1900-1920) when the vested interests of the society were wiped away by the defeat at the hands of Germany in 1917 and replaced by a new organization of society which gave rise to a second Age of Expansion (since 1921).” Now, after everything that has happened in Russia since 1917, I can safely say that this elaborate explanation by Quigley is erroneous. Russian Civilization did not enter upon a new Age of Expansion in 1921. The Age of Conflict that began in Russia in 1900 continued, and the Soviet Union was actually the first post-expansion empire that appeared. But, since Quigley thought that the Soviet Union represents a new Age of Expansion of Russia, he got a number of other things wrong in his book as well. Firstly, he pretty much wrote that the Soviet Union is a serious threat to Western Civilization. This would have been correct if Russian Civilization had indeed entered a new Age of Expansion in 1921. If this had happened, Russian Civilization would have been a serious threat to Western Civilization right now, for example, because Western Civilization is continuing to stagnate. But such is not the case because the Soviet Union, as a post-expansion empire, began to go into decay in 1965 and it collapsed after 1985. Secondly, because of this viewpoint about the Soviet Union, Quigley was rather hostile to the Soviet Union in his book. He accepted pretty much all of the anti-Soviet propaganda and lies that are circulated in the West because he thought of the Soviet Union and of “communism” as a serious threat to the West. He also wrote, for example, that Joseph Stalin behaved like an autocrat. Well, again, this would have been correct if Russian Civilization had been in a new Age of Expansion. But, since this was not the case, Stalin, in reality, did not behave like an autocrat (like a tsar). He behaved and acted like a leader of a post-expansion empire (like a Roman emperor, like an Egyptian emperor, like an Ottoman emperor, like a Kamakura emperor, like a Mughal emperor, or like a Ming emperor, for example). This also helps to explain what Stalin did during his rule. We know that the Bolsheviks, under Vladimir Lenin, conquered almost all of the territory of Russian Civilization from 1918 to 1920. However, a few territories, like Poland and Finland, had been lost after the collapse of the Russian Empire. So, the reason why Stalin wanted to get Finland and Eastern Poland into the USSR was because those territories belonged to the Russian Empire before 1918. This explains why Stalin made the agreement of non-aggression with Adolf Hitler in 1939, in order to divide Poland and to get the Baltic states back. Stalin wanted to retrieve those territories, but he did not want to “attack Europe”, as numerous anti-Russian propagandists in the West claim. I think that he wanted the Soviet Union to stand on the side, to avoid war, and to let the conflicting Western European powers settle matters among themselves. But Adolf Hitler, after getting tricked by the British, attacked the Soviet Union anyway, in order to get his hands on the resources of Russia. I’d also like to point out something else that I read in a rather old history book at my local library when I was in my early teens, though I don’t remember the title of the book or the author. According to this book, not long before the invasion of the Soviet Union in June of 1941, Hitler said to his associates that if Stalin gets 5 to 10 more years to develop and grow the Soviet economy, the Soviet Union will be strong enough to conquer all of Europe. So, there’s a possibility that one of Hitler’s reasons for attacking was his fear of the Soviet Union and his intention to knock the Soviet Union out of the game before it became unbeatable. Anyway, the war that Hitler began and then lost is what eventually led the Russians to Berlin and to Central Europe. If Hitler hadn’t attacked the Soviet Union, I think that the Russians wouldn’t have even attempted to get to Central Europe. Herein, I’d like to point out that there’s a scientific explanation for the atrocious behavior of the Germans in Russia. Since the Germans have Western culture, they naturally behaved in a bad manner on a foreign territory such as Russia, where people have a different culture. So, it’s not surprising that the Germans killed many people in Russia. A recent analogy, for example, is how the Americans, who are also Westerners, behaved in Iraq. Hitler wanted to conquer a large territory like Russia in only several months, and all kinds of atrocities against the Russian population were justified, in his view. I think that one thing that Russian leaders know is that the countries of Western Europe and Central Europe are more populous and wealthier than Russia. Germany alone has a population of over 80 million people. The European part of Western Civilization has a population of several hundred million people, but the entire population of Russian Civilization is just over 200 million people. The Russian Federation has an official population of about 140 million people today, and about 20% of this population are Muslims. So, the leaders of Russia, over the last several centuries, have been very careful when it came to going to war against Western European powers. And this is true today as well. Vladimir Putin, for example, knows the limits of modern Russia well, and he tries to avoid direct conflicts with the states of Western Europe. He knows that those states, if they’re united, are much stronger and wealthier than the current Russia. I think that Stalin knew these realities too. Anyway, theoretically, there’s still a possibility that Russian Civilization can enter upon a new Age of Expansion. The Age of Conflict that began in 1900 in Russia is continuing, and the stage of Universal Empire hasn’t been reached yet. Perhaps even the establishment of a system like Victor Glushkov’s OGAS is possible. But such profound changes are very unlikely in a civilization like Russia at this point.
When it comes to the West, the situation is more complicated because, in the course of its history so far, Western Civilization hasn’t always been ruled from one place. I’ve already made posts that seem satisfactory to me, but I can always go back and polish some of my writing. So, I wrote that the USA has been dominating Western Civilization politically since the end of World War II. This political unit has its base in and around Washington, on the East Coast of North America, and the flag of this political unit is the American flag, with its stars and stripes. A number of American industrial and financial capitalist families control this political unit, or, at the very least, they have great influence over it. But, in the last several decades, heads of the American military and intelligence services have been playing a bigger and bigger role in this political unit, to the extent that the USA now seems like a semi-fascist state. According to Google translate, fascism is an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization. The big American capitalist families have been financing and strengthening instruments of imperialist war and of class oppression – such as the American armed forces, the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, and departments of propaganda – since the Great Depression of the 1930s in order to compensate for the slowing down of expansion in the USA. Expansion in the USA began to slow down in 1929, when the Great Depression began. Since that time, the USA has been turning more and more into an obvious, wasteful, and rageful empire, which constantly intervenes and creates conflicts around the globe in order to support the activities of American capitalist monopolies. Over the last several decades, the departments of propaganda in the USA have been providing the American people with fables about foreign and domestic enemies in order to explain why life in the USA “sucks” or “stinks” more and more. The typical targets have been communists or alleged foreign enemies like the Russians or the Chinese. In the last several decades, new targets, like terrorists, Muslims, and illegal aliens, have been added. But, as any educated and rational person should know, the scapegoats are not the cause of the problems. The real cause of the problems is the institutionalized American capitalist ruling class, which resists real growth and real progress. And you don’t have to be a Marxist to understand this. A conservative historian like Carroll Quigley made this quite clear in his books. In an earlier post, I wrote that the USA has been in decline since the 1970s and that the downward trend in the USA began as early as the 1930s. Some people don’t really agree with me. They point to the American empire and American influence around the globe, which have only grown since then. Sure, this is true. But American influence around the globe has grown since 1991 not because the USA is so efficient and so competent. Just look at the recent American failures in Iraq and Afghanistan. American influence has grown because there’s no serious opposition to American force and economics anywhere in the world. Simply put, in comparison to the USA, every other power in the world these days is laughably weak. This situation has existed since the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Like the khans of the Mongol Empire, American politicians and capitalists expect to receive tribute from the numerous vassals of the USA, and they send their armed forces wherever a rebellion pops up in order to crush it. But this is not a good thing, even for the American people, who appear to be beneficiaries of American imperialism. It’s because this empire has been increasingly parasitic. Beneficial changes can’t take place in such an empire. Perhaps I should have been more specific when I wrote about the decline of the USA. Based on what I wrote, people got the idea that the USA will fracture in the next several years or in the next few decades. No, this decline, which has been taking place for several decades already, might even last for several more decades, as far as I can tell. The USA will lose influence around the world, and in Western Civilization itself, and grow weaker. Eventually, the USA will cease to exist as a functioning political unit, and a new period of disunity and conflict will begin in Western Civilization. In fact, things already aren’t dandy in Western Civilization. This is the best prediction that I can make at the moment. I can also point out that, as some people have already said, there’s no revolutionary potential in the USA. People in the USA are constantly being demoralized and coarsely told that alternatives are non-existent. Socialism seems to be the favorite target of the American establishment in this case because communists and socialists can organize around an idea and come up with revolutionary theories. People in the USA know that if they act, or even speak out, there will be unpleasant consequences for them, if not from the authorities then certainly from the people around them. Therefore, in such an atmosphere of aversion to change, a revolution by ordinary people isn’t possible. Only something like a coup by the military is possible. Scientific progress and intellectual progress are also not possible or are limited in such a repressed society. This is one of the reasons why I predict a slow decline. The USA, in other words, already had its heyday.