10.03.2022, 08:16
A+ Analytics

Ukraine2 or Belarus 2: In which direction will Kazakhstan develop

Kazakhstan takes a position of neutrality for a number of reasons, the main of which is fear for its own security. Nevertheless, the ongoing events have a strong influence on the political processes within the country, forcing our citizens to mentally try on one or another point of view. After all, the war between Russia and Ukraine is being waged, including in the sphere of ideology. 

Фотография с открытых источников

Each country participating in the conflict defends its point of view, substantiating it with various reasons, in its own ideological key.

The Russian side claims that it is waging a "just" war, defending its interests, which supposedly have been trampled on since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Thus, the leadership of the Russian Federation believes that the so-called "collective West" has violated the original agreements, expanding the NATO bloc closer to Russian borders. At first, this was due to the entry of the countries of Eastern Europe, including the Baltic countries, which were once part of the USSR, into the European Union, and therefore, most often, into NATO. In recent years, Ukraine has also taken a very serious course towards military rapprochement with the countries of the West, which, in fact, entailed, from the point of view of Russia, a response in the form of a preventive military operation, the purpose of which is "demilitarization", i.e. disbanding the Ukrainian armed forces and providing guarantees that this country will not enter the NATO bloc.

In addition to "demilitarization", the second goal is proclaimed so-called. "denazification" of Ukraine, which means in the Russian interpretation the removal from power of all political forces that preach the ideas of Ukrainian nationalism. Instead, Russian ideologists propose the concept of the "Russian World", about the relationship of the three Slavic peoples, the unity of their languages, as well as a common history. It is assumed that after the "special military operation", the three Slavic countries, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine, will again live a peaceful life, no longer having ideological contradictions. Moreover, it is believed that a "denazified" and "demilitarized" Ukraine, having got rid of the destructive forces and negative influence of the West, will again become an ally of Russia, as in the old days.
The Russian leadership has been actively promoting this ideology in its society for decades, achieving impressive results. According to various estimates, the "special military operation" against Ukraine was supported by 50 to 70 percent of conscious citizens of Russia. Also, a certain number of citizens of other post-Soviet countries, who are in a dense “information bubble” of the Russian media, sympathize with the aggression.

Among other things, there is a connection with demographics, as the aging Russian society nostalgic for the times of the Soviet Union of the Brezhnev era, which is actively used by the "rulers of thoughts" from the Kremlin. Nostalgia goes hand in hand with aggressive anti-Americanism, which is inflated in every possible way, and it is believed that it is the United States and its satellites represented by Europe that are to blame for the “mental transformation” of previously peaceful Ukrainians into enemies of Russia.

Ukrainian society has its own point of view on what is happening, and most often it is diametrically opposed to the Russian one. She opposes the Soviet-style autarchy ideology with openness to global cooperation, the formation of a new civic identity as part of a common European home. At the heart of Ukrainian ideology lies the desire for dynamic development following the European model, both in the economy and in politics, which means the development of democratic foundations at all levels.

Accusations of Nazism look completely absurd to Ukrainians, given that President Volodymyr Zelensky, who won the tough competition in the 2019 elections, is an ethnic Jew, and a Russian-speaking one. Also, in the parliamentary elections, the party of radical nationalists barely won a little more than 1 percent of the vote, and has no political influence in the country. In this regard, the "denazification" of Ukraine seems to be a very far-fetched issue, fanned by the Russian side to cover up their true intentions to re-establish an empire under Russian control.

It should also be taken into account that the percentage of those who are nostalgic for the USSR has dropped significantly after 2014, when Crimea was torn away from Ukraine, and two regions, Donetsk and Luhansk, were actually cut off. These negative actions were carried out by the Russian side, which unambiguously showed all Ukrainians who in fact is the true enemy for them, Russia or the United States with Europe. Therefore, the February aggression was perceived as a continuation of Russia's war against Ukraine, which has been ongoing for many years, with a transition to a hot phase. Moreover, this war is patriotic for Ukrainians, without any semitones and reservations, and it is being waged for freedom and the opportunity to choose what policy to pursue, without instructions from Moscow.

Therefore, from the first days of the war, the Ukrainians put up a very fierce resistance to the Russian military, even with a huge imbalance in weapons and armies. With the announced plans to conquer Kyiv and establish control over Ukraine within two or three days, the Russian side failed to implement them for many weeks, to the great amazement of international military experts.

Moreover, Russian soldiers often turned out to be severely demoralized by the fact that Ukrainian citizens do not greet them as liberators from "hated nationalists", do not shower them with flowers, which would be logical within the framework of imposed ideological postulates, but, on the contrary, curse them as occupiers, monsters and stranglers. freedom. Every day the war becomes more bloody and merciless, as the Russian military realized that it would not be an easy walk, and now they are systematically destroying Ukrainian cities, killing civilians, no longer hiding behind the myths of “liberation”.

The Russian ideological machine is being rebuilt on the move, quickly introducing into the mass consciousness of its audience the mindset of waging a war of attrition, revenge for already dead soldiers, glorification of war crimes. All this does not fit well with previous ideas about “appeasement” of Ukraine, since it becomes clear to everyone that in this case it will mean not just getting rid of conditional “Ukrainian nationalists”, but, in fact, the physical extermination of those Ukrainian citizens who do not want to live. as collaborators.

To suppress the internal protests of those Russian citizens who do not want to put up with the current course, the flywheel of mass repressions is now starting its run, with all the attached attributes of the search for "national traitors" and the persecution of dissidents, which has already provoked a wave of emigration among Russians, frightened by what is happening, moreover among them are even those who previously considered themselves “out of politics” or stood in the position of “moderate statesmen”.

But the majority of ordinary Russians, from among the so-called. "ordinary people" still actively support the current policy, considering it true and correct. On the other hand, as Russia's isolation from the outside world grows, it will become more and more difficult to judge the degree of Russian society's support for the policy pursued, due to the lack of objective sociological data.

Nevertheless, it is obvious, given the effectiveness of the constructed model of propaganda and suggestion, that in the mass consciousness of Russians there is less and less rational, which is replaced by "necessary" ideological clichés, such as global confrontation with the West, the need to rally around one leader in an era of trials, willingness to make sacrifices in the name of "lofty" goals, etc.

Kazakhstan, in this regard, is in a very vulnerable position. On the one hand, some of our compatriots support the Russian ideology, with all the ensuing negative consequences. On the other hand, Kazakhstan and Ukraine have in common the desire for democracy, the focus on cooperation with the whole world and building an open economy. Therefore, the outcome of the confrontation between Russia and Ukraine will show what threats or opportunities will appear before our country in the near future.