The US has led its allies to expel Russian diplomats in a fierce crackdown on Moscow. Sadly, those countries that attacked Russia include the Ukraine, the Czech Republic, Poland, Bulgaria and Romania. Some of these are former Soviet republics, and others are former Warsaw Pact countries. When the Soviet Union disintegrated, Russians didn’t expect what they would suffer today. They thought they would integrate into the West. But the pathetic reality is that not only the West, but also Moscow’s former “brothers” and allies, have cracked down on Russia.
It can be said Russia’s sufferings are a geopolitical tragedy. The Soviet Union’s problems could be resolved through reforms. However, the republics chose to break up the union. Russia as the dominating power of the Soviet Union gave up its control of the situation. And Russia has carried out “democratic reforms.” Today, Russia has a Western-styled constitutional framework and implements multi-party elections. Although it is regarded as “authoritarian” by the West, the country has made prominent changes. Nonetheless, the West’s attacks against Russia in terms of “freedom, democracy and human rights” haven’t ceased. The changes Russia made at a huge cost failed to receive any political recognition from the West. The US and the West have continued to place Russia in the polar opposite of Western ideology.
Such reality is regretful. It tells people that the attitude of the US and the West doesn’t depend on what Russia’s political system is. Instead, it hinges on the geopolitical relationship between the West and Russia. Russia’s “democratic reforms” cannot win it the US and West’s friendship. Given Russia’s powerful nuclear arsenal and the fact that Russia has to pursue its own interest, which contradicts the interests of the West, the country will continue to be a target of the West. Russia is more “democratic” than Saudi Arabia and Singapore. Unfortunately, it’s much stronger than these two countries. Russia is a huge “polar bear” that the West cannot digest. This is why being repelled by the West has becomes its destiny.
The author is editor-in-chief with the Global Times.