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Hiding Behind the Great Power Myth

Below is just a taste of a very interesting and intensely argued op/ed published in Vzglyad by author Kirill Benediktov responding to the much-ballyhooed Joe Biden comments.  The translation comes via RealClearWorld’s Compass Blog – I recommend reading it in full.

And yes, goddamit we are going extinct. We must have the courage to acknowledge this – Russians are dying as a nation. Maybe for some ethnic groups, which are part of our multi-ethnic state, it is not true, but Russian women give too few births, while Russian men are dying too early – too little and too early for the people to survive. I do think about this “15-year factor” that Biden measures us by. No matter what sources he used – the National Intelligence Council or some other secret institution. But even according to open-source UN projections, in 2025, Russia will live only 116 million people, and by 2050 – no more than 100 million. Now, according to official population estimates, there are 142 million people in Russia. In the United States, by the way, there are now 300 million and by 2050, there will be 400 million people. This means that we will lose 26 million people in 15 years. As if all these years we would have been fighting a grueling, endless war, a war in which we are doomed to defeat in advance.

And if we do not understand this, if we are trying not to thinkabout it, if we prefer to live one day at a time – then we owe U.S.Vice President Joe Biden and should say a great personal “thank you.”Because he honestly said what America expects from Russia. We shouldnot hide behind beautiful words about Russia being a “great power”which has a “strategic partnership” with America. He said thegod-honest truth: you may meander for the next 15 years. After that -well, then, sorry. And it does not matter what will happen next -whether smiling black-skinned sergeants will decommission our rustingballistic missiles; or our last nuclear submarines will be finallydecommissioned to serve as a photo-op for housewives from Kentucky; orour education reform will be brought to an end, and today’s childrenplaying in the sandbox will take the final exams in high school,choosing the correct color picture of the five proposed; or ourdifficult-to-understand Russian will be replaced by the Latin alphabet,in order to easier integrate us into the global economy.