dinsdag, augustus 02, 2005

'Eurasia and Europe should Cooperate against America' interview with A. DUGIN

Russian thinker favors a united 'Europe contra America,' but sees a wider alliance needed because of anti-national forces within the EU. The interview accorded to Turkish magazine ZAMAN

ACCORDING TO RUSSIAN strategist Aleksandr Dugin, geopolitics as a "philosophy of location" is one of the most fundamental instruments that the postmodern age has developed against the historicism of modernity.

Dugin has attempted to make the global status of Russia meaningful among generations, in the framework of geopolitics that he defines as mankind's mutual dealing with location"

Russia had taken the stage as an empire due to its historical and cultural accumulation and its geostrategic position on the world stage. In his opinion, the only way to maintain the claim of the Russian Empire, that stands between civilizations, as an Asian and a European force, is to reinvigorate Eurasian geopolitics. Eurasianism is an indispensable strategy not only for Russia but also for the ascension of Atlantic-oriented, Eurasian forces against the Western alliance. In this interview, Dugin stresses his prospects on regional forces, Turkey in particular, precautions to be taken against the East and West, and the future in general.

The European Union (EU) completed its fifth enlargement process on May 1, 2004. In contrast to the previous ones, the main components of this enlargement consisted of the relatively poor Eastern and Central European countries. This enlargement extended the European geography from Helsinki to Valetta, Lisbon to Budapest. How do you evaluate the expansion of the EU into Russia's territory?

In general, I could say that I am on the side of a greater Europe. It could be a kind of European Union possibly turning into a geopolitical pool, or a power balancing the American hegemony. An independent, powerful and united European Union is a unique opportunity to create a multi-polar world. However, there are two major powers within the EU: One is the Euro-Atlantic countries -- England, Portugal, Spain and some Eastern countries. In this group, England and the United States are the active powers. This group is against Russia and Eurasia, and its strategy is to cause continuous tension between the European West and the Eurasian East. The EU has two identities. One, as I have already said, is Euro-Atlantic and the second is the Berlin-Paris continental EU identity. The latter is independent from the Atlantic countries, powerful and democratic and tries to establish a European empire as an ally of both the United States and Eurasia. There is a secret disagreement between these two groups. The Eastern Europeans, the most recent members, have strengthened the Atlantic wing. But these countries, for some historical reasons, have stood up against Russia. Hence, we as Eurasians, the great and democratic European supporters, view the most recent members in the Union standing up against Russia as a step against Eurasia itself. Therefore, in general, it is nice to see that these members are under the effect of the EU. It is already impossible to be a member.

How do you evaluate the situation of Russia, caught between the Greater Middle East Project and Europe? As a creator who established Eurasianism in thought, is it possible for Eurasianism to be an alternative to the great powers on top of the power hierarchy in the international system?

The United States aims to create a mono-polar world it can easily dominate and dictate its own geopolitical agenda. Since it has difficulty in doing this, crises have been experienced in the international system. As an alternative to this, we advocate a new multi-polar world, that is based on cooperation with Europe, Eurasia and the Pacific. We believe it is necessary that Eurasia, Europe and Russia play fundamental roles in this process.

What is the Russian viewpoint or that of the Eurasians on the Greater Middle East Project?

This is a ploy by the U.S. ultra-imperialist New Conservatives (neo-Cons), "the think-tanks" close to the Cheney-Bush circle. The plan is to wipe out Islam from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and the other countries and to form regions directly controlled by the U.S. Turkey's role in this anti-Arab and anti-Islam play is to mediate as Bush mentioned in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Summit in Istanbul. But America does have the instruments to make this dream materialize. Apart from the Middle East, I am worried about our entering a larger conflict zone. It appears that the future of the world order will shape up according to the initiatives in this area.

What kind of message was Putin trying to deliver to the United States by not attending the NATO Summit in Istanbul?

The fate of NATO also resembles that of the EU. It has been divided into two groups; the pro-Atlantic and the pro-European. The summit in Istanbul organized under the headline, "Enforcement of the pro-transatlantic domination plans," also witnessed a diversity in opinion that manifested itself in the verbal quarrel between [Jacques] Chirac and [George W.] Bush. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin recognizes and supports the continental identity of NATO and seeks cooperation; but he cannot be enthused over NATO, that has a pro-transatlantic role, and will never be.

U.S. forces have been staging military maneuvers in the Caspian Sea. Can you evaluate their interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq by considering the effects on Russia? How will Russia probably react to this?

We need to take into consideration the U.S. tools in forming a mono-polar world. Just as Great Britain performed in the "Great Play" against the Soviets years ago, America now plans to control the Caucasus, Central Asia and other strategic areas, that are of importance to their aims. U.S. bases set up in Central Asia and at other similar points after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, have been established in strategic areas in Eurasia under the canopy of the fight against international terrorism. The strategists in Russia are being temped to perceive this as a challenge to Russia's national benefits. The other problem is that Russia is not strong enough to deal with America. If so, what should be done? To embark upon a diplomatic resistance against the United States by utilizing its diplomatic efficiency in Afghanistan, Arab countries and Central Asia is the best solution. Yet, Russia and Eurasia cannot display any efficiency without the support of European countries. They are supposed to develop alternative visions mutually.

You talked about the fight against international terrorism a few minutes ago. Do you believe that such a threat exists?

International terrorism is a kind of excuse that U.S. strategists are making so as to fill the counter- power vacuum that surfaced after the Soviet Empire became history. They needed a new enemy image in order to create a new world order. This is not a vehicle being used for massive propaganda; but at the same time, a strategic component of the United States to demonstrate its military might at any place in the world. Hence, the U.S. has has the opportunity to prove its military superiority, using the so-called fight against international terrorism as an excuse. Of course, there is terrorism and terrorists; however, this is not the kind of global enemy that America claims, in its bid to consolidate its global domination. To emphasize a point, we do not mean that we support or ignore terrorism. Please, note the distortions made by the United States.

Then, can we conclude that America is trying to use international terrorism because communism has been taken out of the scene?

Now the circumstances have changed a little. The communist world was a whole and it was concrete, while international terrorism is a global phenomenon. The United States has accepted the role of the world's policeman. Yet, what it does is mask the new American strategy based on imperial domination.

We often hear Putin talking about the threat of international terrorism, using almost the same jargon as Bush. How would you comment on this?

This is a political game and what is to be said has to be said. The United States and Russia seem to use the same jargon but what they talk about is different from each other. When America discusses international terrorism, we understand that it indeed tries to conceal the plans relevant to global domination, while Russia talks about the enemies fighting to disrupt stability in Eurasia and going beyond their limits. Russian military strategists perceive the U.S.-led NATO as commanding independent countries and bringing some radical groups to the fore.

How would Turkey contact Russia if the Turks played a role in the Greater Middle East Project? Would there be any tension in the region if Turkey cooperated with the United States?

Yes, there would, because Turkey has a double identity, a capacity to identify its regional strategies and position and an opportunity to deal with both Eurasia and Europe. In this way, Turkey is able to play a positive role independent of the Atlantic; but if it becomes a tool in the U.S. Greater Middle East Project, then Turkey would run the risk of having no agreement with both Russia and Europe. America plans to use Turkey not only against the Arab-Muslim Middle Eastern countries but also against Europe. A pro-American Turkey cannot solve any problem in the region, ideologically or strategically. Moreover, such an attempt will strain relations with Russia, Europe as well as with Islamic countries. As Turkey has an active role, it needs to shape its diplomatic relations in a Eurasian sense. As long as it follows the Greater Middle East policy through the path that America has modified, Turkey will be recognized as a second Israel. Turkey is expected to exert more intellectual and cultural efforts.

Already, the Turkish government - more often than not - has disclosed that it does not view the issue of being an American model affirmatively, and approaches the matter from the perspective of cooperation.

The United States is at the peak of its power, hence, European countries and Russia are not able to resist American policies as Turkey does. For the time being, there is nothing that can be done other than accepting the American projects. For this reason, Putin did not go against the U.S. bases in Central Asia. I can see that Turkey has partially accepted America's proposal, because, this is a realpolitik choice. However, it is certain that Turkey does not consist of the government alone. We know that Turkey has a complex social structure and the power of the army, political parties and religious inclination can easily be perceived. The Turkish public protested against the NATO Summit and adopted a position like the Eurasians. This is because the Turkish government could not explicitly recognize the strategy as Putin did. That is why the government's pragmatist steps should be viewed with understanding.

What is Russia's attitude towards Chechnya? Is it possible for Russia to change its policy towards this country?

Moscow has triumphed militarily in Chechnya but not politically. We could not explain to them why they had to remain within the borders of Russia and make them feel that they had a place within those borders. To solve the problem by military means rather than by political means was the greatest mistake of the Putin government. We propose a "Eurasian solution" on the Chechnya issue. Russia needs to offer Chechens the "Eurasian Plan for Chechnya." Chechens are active, brave and proud people. Chechen separatists are also supposed to be integrated into the Eurasia vision we mentioned before. Russia should better respect its good enemies and make them integrate into the Eurasia vision for a better future. Otherwise, much more chaos will be experienced.

Do you think that relations between Russia and Turkey change fast? Because, the Russian attitude towards us on the Cyprus issue six months ago was very severe. The Russian foreign minister, the day before, signed the conclusion report in which Mehmet Ali Talat used the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus prime minister's status at the Islamic Development Organization meeting. The chief adviser in the Prime Ministry, Ahmet Davutoglu, had mentioned in one of his speeches, an official meeting that Putin will embark upon in six months' time. If it comes true, a Russian president will visit Turkey for the first time in 30 years. Do you think this relation is a kind of marriage of convenience?

Russia's strategy of perceiving Turkey as an enemy changed after the Cold War ended. Turkey used to be America's ally in this double-polar world. But we are now in a mono-polar world and Turkey has many more alternatives than before. As a matter of fact, Turkey and Russia are located in a triangle as being both Eurasian and Western as well as Eastern countries. That is why Ankara and Russia strive to perceive each other as regional partners. Russia has changed its perspective ever since Turkey discovered the Eurasian dimension. I believe that Ahmet Davutoglu (a member of the Independent Industrialists and Businessmen Association) is aware of the Eurasia potential. There are some groups studying the Eurasian vision in Turkey. Hitherto, Russia totally used to support the Greek side on the Cyprus issue. But now the parameters have changed. The importance the Turkish Cypriots give to their independence is already well known; yet, Turkey, like other countries, is aware that its characteristics are being threatened by the wind of globalization in this mono-polar world where America is the sole leader. The same applies to Russia. Then, wouldn't it be abnormal for the two countries to strive in seeking a new alliance that would not mean a kind of colonialism or expansionism; but a kind of cooperation awakening democracy and finding specific solutions to the problems of the multi-polar world.

Aleksandr Dugin

The preparation of the system of eurasian connections. Alexander Dugin in Moscow with Belgian geopolitist Jean Thiriart, the author of famous book "The Euro-soviet Empire from Vladivostok to Dublin". 1992

Aleksandr Dugin was born in Moscow in 1962. Dugin, whose writings and publications on strategic and geopolitical topics are admired, has been a top adviser in the Russian Parliament (Duma) since 1999. He is also popular for being one of the important strategists within the Putin circle. He established his Eurasian Party in 2001 and took over the leadership. Then, he began to publish the 'Eurasian Observer' newspaper. He has been a columnist in some national publication organs such as Izvetia, Literaturnaya Gazeta and Vremya Novostey since 2002. Dugin, known to be the most active Russian philosopher, is also popular as one of the greatest advocates of Eurasianism. He speaks nine languages and is married with two children.


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