Russia Today

“Give Back the Future”

Ardhendu Banerjee

On June 23, Yevgeny Prigozhin’s Wagner army staged a rebellion in the streets of Russia, triggering a western-media frenzy across the globe. They are continually emphasising how Putin is in serious trouble this time. As a result of the “soldier mutiny,” Russia is experiencing conditions that are virtually civil war-like. Some have dragged out something that has bothered them for so long in order to spread this deception. One illustration is Lavr Kornilov. Ironically, the 1917 infantry revolution that ignited the five-year civil war has been compared to a protest of just 6,000 troops (Prigozhin claims 25,000, although this is untrue), which was swiftly repressed in 24 hours. Promoting these reversals serves an obvious goal. The Western media is attempting to incite an anti-Russian hysteria by claiming that, in order to end the Russian civil war, Putin must remove his forces from Ukraine, and that, in the alternative, Russia will be completely destroyed. And if brought, Russia would be compelled to accept a humiliating loss at the hands of the NATO backed Ukraine. So, Russia’s approval to defeat is thus nearly a given. The propaganda alleges that the Americans were on the hook for planning Prigozhin’s demonstrations. And with these comments, Ukraine is being encouraged to climb the heroism ladder a bit further ( Pentagon head Lloyd Austin spoke on the phone with Ukrainian Defence Minister Alexei Reznikov shortly after Prigozhin’s march).The intention is incredibly clear: to stop the US economy from spiralling out of control and to let the rest of the world know that they will continue to hold power.But for the time being, the US officials can get complacent, nothing else will be available now.

On the other hand, Narendra Modi’s speech during the joint session of the US Congress last week caused a worldwide stir. It was predicted that by collaborating with the US, India would break diplomatic relations with Russia this time. What is it, exactly? It is true that America needs India badly now. The US wants to welcome the rise of China’s neighbour India as a world power while its enemy, China, is becoming increasingly powerful. That is why America agreed to transfer high-tech to India, start production of General Electric F414 aircraft engines, and sell the unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9B. Besides, cooperation will also be provided in other high-tech fields like artificial intelligence, space technology, green technology, microchips, and semiconductors. That is, the US is now prepared to provide India with everything that it previously only provided to its closest allies. Does India not need those? Definitely needed. India will appreciate this kind hand as well. But obtaining a permanent place on the UN Security Council is India’s top goal. India was nominated eight times in the past as a non-permanent member, but it never received a permanent seat. This time, India has set up the ball for that location despite the limitations of the rules. Has Russia, on the other hand, steered clear of them? Never once. On the other side, Denis Alipov, the Russian ambassador to India, conveyed his country’s wish for India’s mission success. S Jaishankar, on the contrary, has stated unequivocally that India has no plans to join NATO. That is, there are no signs of cheating with Russia. It is important to keep in mind that India and Russia have a long-standing connection, making it nearly impossible for India to betray a trusted ally. Besides BRICS, SCO, G20, Brahmos, nuclear submarines, S-400 anti-aircraft missiles, etc. cannot be ignored, which testify to the strength of Russia-India relations.

So, the issue is: Is this Russian military coup has no consequence? If anything it is not at all a military coup. Wagner is a private military company, hence its true goal is financial gain. They weren’t there to start a revolution. On the other side, Wagner and Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defence minister, have a troubled history. The conflict has intensified since the start of the war with Ukraine due to a number of factors. Therefore, the stated goal of the so-called “March for Justice” is to ask for the resignation of officials of the Russian Defence Ministry. And for that reason, the soldiers were back at their location within a day. There was absolutely no bloodshed. The Wagner gang, it should be noted, took these actions in an effort to elevate their status and get a few privileges. Dmitri Peshkov consequently declared that Prigozhin will travel to Belarus via Alexander Lukashenko’s intervention. Prigozhin and Lukashenko have been pals for almost 20 years, although Belarus is not a NATO member. Prigozhin’s agreement prevented what would have occurred to Hitler’s Sturmabteilung in 1934. Prigozhin has already been charged criminally with violating Article 279, which carries a 12- to 20-year prison term. Prigozhin is therefore not a patriot, but a traitor. So Putin has no choice but to be tough on him, which is why after the incident Putin said on TV that the special military operation to counter Ukraine was the most important thing for him. And that confirms how internally controlled Russia is.

But what is the source of Russia’s confidence? China’s State Councillor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang met with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko in Beijing, while Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu confirmed that no one has the right to muddle through Russia’s internal affairs, and China-Russia relations will remain intact. That is, he expressed direct support. Also interesting is the position of other allies of the Russian Federation, including Kazakhstan, Qatar, and Iran. Almost everyone is siding with Russia. Turkish President Erdogan has directly backed his Russian counterpart and said he is ready to help. Following the Western media uproar, particularly CNN and the New York Times, it was revealed that US Ambassador to Russia Lynn Tracy had contacted the Russian Foreign Ministry via e-mail regarding embassy security concerns over the Wagner incident. On the other hand, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda indicated that NATO would have to strengthen the defence of the eastern border if Prigozhin appeared in Belarus. That’s probably what he says, Uncle, first save your life.

Last but not least, has Ukraine been able to take advantage of this commotion in Russia? The New York Times reported that there was no negative impact on Russia on the battlefield, and Ukraine did not benefit at all. It quoted US officials as saying that, there do not appear to be any gaps in the battlefield that Russia could exploit; no Russian units have moved an inch from their positions, and there have been no casualties on the battlefield. So will the war continue forever? No, it won’t work. And that’s because Putin will be wary this time and will feel that the longer the war drags on, the more likely the US’s psychological warfare policy will increase its efforts to drive various cracks inside Russia. No matter how powerful Putin is, he must face some unforeseen events. There is evidence that such fears are not unfounded. On the evening of June 23, the Moscow branch of the Communist Party held an election conference to nominate their candidate for mayor of Moscow. Leonid Zyuganov’s name was in it. Nikolai Zubrilin, the leader of the capital’s communists, and Zyuganov himself gave speeches under the title “Give Back the Future”. So Putin must end the war quickly. And at the same time, Putin will try to strengthen relations with neighbouring countries. But this baseless propaganda of US will not weaken Russia. So, these are nothing but a waste of US time.


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Vol 56, No. 5, Jul 30 - Aug 5, 2023