Alexander Dugin: The Global Politics of the Russian Nationalist Ideologist

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After the car explosion that killed his daughter, Alexander Dugin stood nearby in shock. The prominent far-right nationalist ideologue and putative Kremlin whisperer appeared to appear videos uploaded to social networks, with his head in his hands, staring in disbelief at the smoldering remains of a street on the outskirts of Moscow on Saturday night. Darya Dugina, 29, editor-in-chief of a disinformation website called United World International and a political commentator in her own right, was killed in the blast.

Two days later, Russia’s internal security service, the FSB, identified an alleged Ukrainian secret agent as the culprit and said he had fled to Estonia with his young daughter after carrying out the attack weeks later of preparatory surveillance. Ukrainian officials rejected the claim; an adviser to President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Ukrainian television that his nation “is not a criminal state, like the Russian Federation, and, moreover, it is not a terrorist state.” (On Monday, Russian missiles continued to rain down on civilian areas in various parts of Ukraine).

Conspiracy theories abound about one incident, everyone seems sure it was a murder. Rumors swirled that Dugin may have been the intended target, either by foreign agents or internal rivals within Russia. Some experts speculated it was a false flag operation carried out by the FSB—with Dugin even complicit—to further darken attitudes toward Ukraine and justify an escalation.

In a statement, Dugin used the tragedy of his daughter’s death to call for a decisive victory over Ukraine. “Our hearts yearn for more than vengeance or revenge,” he said. “It’s too small, not in the Russian style. We just need our win. My daughter laid her maiden life on his altar. So win, please!”

Car bomb assassination sparks unrest among Putin’s war cheerleaders

Dugin’s rhetoric, writings and speeches are said to have shaped the thinking of a generation of Russian political elites, including President Vladimir Putin, in the first decade of the new century. (Although some analysts stress that his influence over the Kremlin may be overstated.) As my colleagues pointed out, he has a long history of advocating a Russian conquest of Ukraine.

Dugin claims to have called for the annexation of Crimea as early as the 1990s and is credited with helping to revive the concept of “Novorossiya” or “New Russia,” the term invoked in the 18th century for the lands that the empire Russian had captured the Ottomans, much of whom are now in Ukraine, as a nationalist engine of Russian ambitions. He is also the main propagator of the idea of ​​”Russky Mir” or “Russian world,” a phrase linked to the expansionist, revanchist nationalism of the Putin era, anchored in both imperial nostalgia and Orthodox Christian identity.

“There is no place for Poland on the Eurasian continent. […]

Russia, in its geopolitical and sacro-geographical development, is not interested in the existence of an independent Polish state in any way,

wrote Aleksandr Dugin in his “Foundation of Geopolitics” (1997).

— Stefan Thompson (@StefanThompson) August 21, 2022

Those ideological moorings led him to carry out activities that would see him sanctioned by the United States. “He was active in separatist regions in the 2008 Russia-Georgia war and in 2014 in Ukraine, where US officials say recruited people with military and combat experience to fight on behalf of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic,” my colleagues reported.

“Ukraine must disappear from the Earth and be rebuilt from scratch or the people must get it,” Dugin said in 2014, as a political crisis in Kyiv served as a pretext for the seizure of initial lands of the Kremlin next door. “I think it kills, kills, kills. No more talking.”

The daughter of a Putin ally was killed near the Russian capital: what to know

In his 1997 best-selling book, “Foundations of Geopolitics,” Dugin described his defining worldview. He sees Russia as a civilizational state at the heart of what should be a “Eurasian empire,” a landmass stretching from Vladivostok in the Pacific to Europe. It is fundamentally at odds, according to Dugin, with the sea power of the United States and its junior partner, Britain, and should represent a kind of illiberal bulwark against Western liberalism.

He also advised in the book that Russia deploys the tacit influence and disinformation campaigns in Western democracies that we have seen in recent years. “It is especially important to introduce geopolitical disorder into American domestic activity,” Dugin wroteurging Russia to fuel “all kinds of separatism and ethnic, social and racial conflicts” to destabilize “internal political processes” in the United States.

Dugin sees Russia’s geopolitical “destiny” as he put it in an interview earlier this yearas an expansion of its “Eurasian” power: “the assertion of Russia as an independent civilization with its own traditional values. And it will not be complete until we unite all Eastern Slavs and all Eurasian brothers in one great space. Everything derives from this logic of fate, and so does Ukraine.”

In 2011, Putin was pushing for the creation of a “Eurasian Union” with Russia and a handful of former Soviet states likely to strengthen ties with Moscow. Dugin’s embrace of Russian-centric “Eurasianism” led him to encourage other nations’ versions of the theme. including China’s Belt and Road Initiative. He also cultivated closer ties with Turkish nationalists, some of whom he took advantage of a long tradition of Turkish “Eurasianism”.“.

When Zhang Weiwei (apparently Xi Jinping’s favorite scholar) wants to chat with foreigners about his denialism in Xinjiang, who does he contact?

Aleksandr Dugin, the Russian neo-fascist.

Horseshoe theory in practice.

— Fergus Ryan (@fryan) August 22, 2022

Russia blames Ukraine for car explosion that killed daughter of Putin ally

Dugin, supported by the ultra-nationalist Russian business magnate Konstantin Malofeev, has found traveling companions all over the world. He cheered former President Donald Trump’s 2016 election in a conversation with American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Dugin’s writings were acclaimed by a diverse cast of American white supremacists and far-right extremists.

Dugin also found common cause with the European far right, including influential parties in France, Italy and Austria. He has met the Dutch far-right leader Thierry Baudet, and expressed admiration for the politician’s move in the Netherlands. In a recent interview, Baudet described Putin’s war in Ukraine as a “great” and “heroic” fight against the “globalists” and the “deep state”.

Dugin is now at the heart of the latest conflagration between Russia and Ukraine, with Moscow blamed for the car explosion in Kyiv. Andrii Yusov, a spokesman for Ukraine’s general directorate of military intelligence, told my colleagues that his agency would not comment on the incident. But he added that “I can say that the process of internal destruction of the ‘Russky Mir’ or ‘the Russian world’ has begun,” and said that “the Russian world will be eaten and devoured from within.”

War in Ukraine: what you need to know

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