Saturday, January 28, 2017

Nazionalism is dead, long live the people and the future Russia of the peoples!

El Murid penned a long text on the crisis or disintegration of the Strelkov-led ORND (The Organization of the Russian National Movement) or K 25. The latter (K 25) effectively became a distinct entity very early on--much at the same time when Strelkov made the decision to give the original K 25 his own name and call it together with Egor Prosvirnin the National or Nationalistic Movement, this decision entrenched the nationalistic, right-wing and more or less underlying anti-Soviet and anti-communist character of the "movement," which has never become any movement (anywhere). In contrast, K 25 remained largely limited to Petersburg and was at least mildly positive to the historical meaning of (much of) the Soviet Union.

In the light of the falling out between Strelkov and Prosrvirnin on the anniversary meeting of K 25/ORND, El Murid is now trying to downplay the political and substantial reasons of what happened and to minimize the significance. He is characterizing the issue as "technical or technological." This does disservice to everything, and such banalization (El Murid calls what happened "microscopic") can stick everyone only ever deeper in the blind alley of the moment.

A key part in this banalization is banalization of Egor Prosvirnin and his Sputnik and Pogrom journal and platform. Yes, Prosvirnin is young, but he is intelligent and potent. But his project (and he himself is a project) and his ambitions have never been primarily "business," as El Murid asserts. Egor Prosvirnin has been a right-wing agent-provocateur all along, and it only shows the blindness or the myopic character of "revolutionary" intellectuals to see the obvious right in front of their eyes.

Thus accepting Prosvirnin's support and tying oneself with him and his crew was tantamount to setting up one's headquarters in the gazebo of one's own enemy.

Of course, there were other and almost equally serious issues from the start. K 25 and ORND has been under the close watch from the very beginning, and some of its elements controlled and handled. Some of the self-defeating cynicism and haughtiness toward the demands of basic political work and the grass-root work eluded in his piece by El Murid himself has been coming, I suspect, much from this very direction as well.

Genuine political work and grass-root organizing has always been foreign, alien and unknown to the rather intellectual and elitist setup of K 25 and ORND. This is well transparent in the use or rather misuse or misapplication of the leading metaphor of the organization chosen as "fire crew." The organization defined itself as a fire crew or team of would-be firefighters for the anticipated crisis or demise of the Russian Federation. Firefighters fight fire and they do have the means and training to do so. They do the work on the ground, they identify the source of the fire and take care of things that need to be tackled and extinguished first. Instead, this intellectual "fire crew" was from its inception and by its choice a literati club with literati ambitions. That's also why, completely at odds with the "fire crew" metaphor, El Murid has been (re)defining K 25 in his latest interview with Neiromir TV ( as a club that aspires and tries to be a (poor) version of a British tea aristocratic club. First, it appears that an understanding of how these British gentlemen's club function and what they are are far removed from the institutional intricacies of the British Empire and is more akin to an impression casually obtained from a movie or from a work of fiction just as one would see Africa from an airplane. Second, a tea discussion club is no fire crew.

Still, even in this setup, K 25 and ORND remained one of the few more or less half-organized venues where important truths and ideas have been voiced and communicated. But even as such it has never come close to the electrifying people's voice and passion embodied in someone like Mozgovoy.

And much like the Lugansk and Donetsk (no more) People's Republic, Strelkov's "movement," which never became any movement, has been largely safely contained by the Kremlin.

In this regard, just moving from a nationalistic vision to a people's (narodnoy) mindset, thus ditching "nacionalnoye" or even "nacionalisticheskoy" and raising the flag of naroda (instead of nacii), would be a great and necessary step forward.

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