Reason for Joy

Now it’s become clear what was behind the Russian manifestations of joy over the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria:

2 thoughts on “Reason for Joy

  1. “joy over the earthquakes in Turkey”

    Just the other day I was interacting with someone who is still trying to find rational western-style reasons to explain russian actions. I used just that clip (and a link to Julia Davis) to show just how insane russian public discourse is.

    I can understand not getting it up to a point… but after that point… you have to wake up and smell the coffee.


  2. I was motivated to research this guy. He was actually in western media a year ago, because he and another guest of Soloviev were saying that the invasion of Ukraine was a bad idea. Bagdasarov said it would be worse than Afghanistan.

    I don’t know what he’s been saying since then, but I see from his website that he’s essentially a weekly guest on the show, so he must have changed his tune somehow.

    But Turkey is his real focus. On his website, he describes himself as a “military orientalist”. He’s a Russian Armenian who grew up in the Ferghana Valley, and his whole career has involved Russia’s relations with the Islamic world.

    I’ve tried to take a long view. The Internet Encyclopedia of Ukraine suggests that Russia got its start as an expansionist power, in part by fighting with Ottoman Turkey for possession of Ukraine.

    I found an article from The Atlantic, dating from 1886, an account by a Protestant missionary of the millennial “dream of Russia” to recapture Constantinople for Christianity:

    The article provides many glimpses of the threeway relations between Russia, Turkey, and western Europe, during the 19th-century age of imperialism.

    Nowadays I suppose it’s more like Russia, Islam, and NATO. His remarks about Turks and Turkic people are not mysterious if one knows anything about Pan-Turkism, and Turkish ambitions after the end of the USSR.

    Wanting to recapture Constantinople in 2023 sounds insane, but I remember how many grand geopolitical schemes were declared in America during the two decades after 9/11.


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