In the eyes of imperialists: what is “the Ukrainian ideology”?

When interrogating activists, Russian cops sometimes ask whether you support “the Ukrainian ideology”. You inevitably wonder what that is. It happens that an activist replies with a counterquestion: “What do you mean by ‘the Ukrainian ideology'”? And the enforcer of Russian law says: “You must know. You are an educated person, aren’t you?”

Is there an English, French or Spanish ideology? The French one is claimed to exist. As one emigrant said, “It is liberty, equality, fraternity and secularity (the church has no dominance over principles of secular humanism). This is literally an official formula”. However, a question remains of why a certain nation became for Russians a personification of any ideology. Since the USSR collapsed, no other former republic of the union has become such a personification. A Nihilist reporter talked with Ukrainians and Russians about this phenomenon and the peculiarities of police mentality.

There is an opinion that Russians believe the very idea of the existence of the Ukrainian language and culture, as well as of an independent Ukrainian state, to be a hostile ideology. Some argue that the police, out of their ignorance, simply do not understand the meaning of the term, confusing “ideology” with pacifism, humanism or who knows what.

One of the interlocutors thinks that by this special ideology, imperialists mean the refusal by Ukrainians to be Russians and assimilate their worldview into the so-called “russkiy mir”, internalizing the pro-Putinist paternalism, aggressive xenophobia and antagonism toward humanistic European values.

“An alien ideology for them is an ideology of a person not dying for the wet dreams of Pu and his partners,” believes K., a literary expert. “And the name for this ideology is derived from the identification of the person. ‘I am Ukrainian, go to hell’ is a hostile Ukrainian ideology. ‘You are fascists, go to hell’ is a hostile liberal ideology. ‘You are thieves and homophobes, go to hell’ is a hostile trans-LGBT-feminist ideology.”

“The concept of a Ukrainian ideology must involve a drive to live happily and eat well, not to bother anyone and not to inflict apocalyptic suffering on yourself and others. Briefly, it is common sense,” suggests M., a doctor and a non-binary person.

“A hostile ideology to them is our existence as an independent nation,” believes S., a woman with a career in Ukrainian IT.

Our reporter also decided to listen to the voice of the simple Russian folk: “I know some pro-Putinist retired women of 70-90 years in the suburbs. It makes no sense to talk to them seriously. Walking by the house of a former factory employee, I heard from a widely opened window a TV set at high volume, and saw the old woman sitting on a folding chair, enjoying the Russian culture as broadcast by Channel One. This prompted me to start a conversation.

– Hello, ma’am. Your TV is very loud. Are you listening about Ukraine?

– I can’t hear anything, so I have it loud!

– Are you watching about Ukraine?

– Watched yesterday… The Banderites…

– Can you tell me what you think the Ukrainian ideology is?

– That is… uh… when the Banderites attacked us! I talk to Annushka, she’s 90 years old. After the war she ended up in the [sic] Ukraine. She says the Banderites kept bothering everybody. She left and came here to work at our factory.

– When did she go to Ukraine for the last time?

– I don’t remember, maybe fifty years ago… or sixty… she doesn’t remember either!

Annushka, her neighbor, has suffered from dementia for a few years. It makes even less sense to talk to her. The ma’am trusts no information sources about Ukraine other than Annushka and Kiselyov. I think she embodies the average Russian loyalist, with her insufficient education, high vulnerability to the state propaganda, aggressive tendencies and mental changes due to aging. She really believes she was attacked.”

By the attack they surely mean the defense against colonizers. When we attack, it is not war but order enforcement. When the Ukrainians defend themselves, it is an attack. Do not confuse!

Activists of the Russian left have disagreeing opinions. For example, Aleksey Baykov, a Russian journalist and blogger, believes “the Ukrainian ideology” is an incorrect term, but he also believes that an ideology of Ukrainianness might exist: “Theoretically, every nation has a national idea. It is usually an artificial construct developed by the intelligentsia. Such as ‘a city upon the hill’ in the USA or the ‘Russian empire building’ in the RF. The ideology of Ukrainianness is something like that. The intelligentsia of any state will try to formulate a national idea, because the state pays for that. However, such a perception of national ideas is archaic because the contemporary citizen does not perceives the state as an idea, but as a set of services.” Alexey refuses to answer whether he wishes for a reunification of the USSR in its former borders and whether he stands against Ukrainian independence, but he is known to consider the dissolution of the USSR a tragedy:

Artem Langenburg, the former editor of multiple St Petersburg magazines and an LGBT activist now residing in Armenia, believes “the Ukrainian ideology” to be a highly incorrect term: “It is a product of Russian propaganda. The society of Ukraine, now fighting Russian aggression, is consolidated yet diverse. A single Ukrainian ideology has never existed.”

To sum up, spiritual imperialists, even on the left, direct most of their hate at their neighbors, unable to make peace with the paradox: “We have a significant piece of shared history, our languages are similar (at first glance, but overall Mova is somehow incomprehensible, as though it is not a Russian dialect), but these people, if you look closer, do not resemble us at all. They are calculating.” Pragmatism and mercantilism are the names imperialists give to the same old common sense, the unwillingness to die for yet another false idea of a stranger who has decided to play demiurge. “At the same time, they have all that liberty, Makhnovism. How weird. Order and a firm hand are what a normal Russian person needs, and surely the younger brothers of a Russian person need them at least that much. And their soil is so good. If only we had such soil…” a Muscovian colonizer rambles, switching in five minutes to a rant about how nobody is deciding to go utilize the North of Russia, where there remains a titanic amount of work to begin.

Indeed, they should advance to their own North, with its climate being such a favorite for Russians, unlike the European summer, “the pleb season”, as one Internet fan of Aryan gnosticism emphasized: There blows an icy wind, supporting the indestructible Russian mortido. There remains the immense Russian emptiness, where one can build multiple cities, only to have them decay in the perfect Russian tradition.

No. They do not want that. Because there are neighbors whose resistance they want to break. It is not interesting to go to an empty field where there is nothing to destroy, nobody to murder, no beautiful washing machines to steal, nobody to ask whether they support “the ideology”, and nobody to harass with criminal persecution.

Still, the empty fields of snow are the absolute essence of the russkiy mir. The Russian imperialists are afraid of implementing this main dream of theirs, but that is a topic for another article.

Original: Алексей Ушаков. Глазами имперцев: что такое «украинская идеология»?

/Translation: K0tyk


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