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Commentary

Moscow Believes In Conspiracy Theories

A woman looks at job listings in Kemerovo during a job fair in November.A woman looks at job listings in Kemerovo during a job fair in November.
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A woman looks at job listings in Kemerovo during a job fair in November.
A woman looks at job listings in Kemerovo during a job fair in November.
By Viktor Yerofeyev
Who financed the global financial crisis?

That's the main, secret question the Russian authorities are asking. They're certain there's no such thing as accidents, or fate, or human conscience. But there are conspiracies.

Conspiracies targeting Russia. The Orange Revolution in Ukraine was a conspiracy. And so was the Rose Revolution in Georgia. And behind all the conspiracies stands the United States. And behind the United States, what? International Zionism? And behind International Zionism, the devil himself?

But we are Holy Rus. And for our Holy Rus, the financial crisis is potentially fatal. But why is it tantamount to death particularly for Russia? Because it is unfolding against the background of another crisis -- a crisis of confidence. In recent years the state has once again become, as it was in Soviet times, impenetrable.

Even if the Kremlin is being guided by beneficent notions of our national interests, officials do not discuss those notions in public. They just hand them down from on high, like gods. Deus ex machina.

As a result, the government's actions are seen as unpredictable. They change or violate the rules of the game. The only logic that might be divined from them is that they strengthen the state. Or that the state thinks they strengthen it. Either way, the symbolism of the Kremlin as a fortress ringed with high walls increasingly attains a gloomy actuality.

And an atmosphere of total suspicion emerges. The Kremlin can say -- and it has said many times -- that there is no financial crisis in Russia. And the people are supposed to accept that. And the Kremlin itself partly believes what it says because in Russia, historical reality has usually been built on words, not deeds: the verbal icon, denying the existence of a crisis, becomes a magic talisman protecting against the crisis.

In order to strengthen its verbal talisman, the Kremlin needs to find foreign fingerprints on the crisis. And it does find them. The Americans are to blame for the international financial crisis. And if this crisis infects the Russian economy, we know who is to blame.

But that is not where this verbal fantasizing ends. In Soviet days, the authorities would have said that the financial crisis was created by the Americans in order to destroy our country (which they are always dreaming of doing). And, if it comes down to that, the Kremlin might say the same thing now.

And if it isn't possible to tame the crisis with words, then it needs to be blown up into a universal conflagration. The public must be terrified so that the country can be turned into an armed camp under martial law. And, again, this is done for the good of the state. They aren't talking about the crisis itself; they are talking about how the state can benefit from it.

Viktor Yerofeyev is a novelist and a regular contributor to RFE/RL's Russian Service. The views expressed in this commentary are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect those of RFE/RL
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by: Omer from: South Africa
December 05, 2008 14:10
I think it is a fact that theis criseis is brought on by yhe US, not Russia. Let us go back to the gold standard, where would the us stand then. Spending money which you still have to earn is always a risky situation to live with. As for a conspiracy, remember the words FDR : "IN POLITICS (FINANCE INCLUDED) NOTHING HAPPENS BY ACCIDENT. IF IT HAPPENS YOU CAN BET IT WAS PLANNED THAT WAY".

by: Ray Finch from: Lawrence, Kansas
December 05, 2008 19:52
Victor, Good post. It was Lenin who once remarked "the capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them." I'm afraid he did not understand the global economic system. Today's Wall Street brokers/capitalists sold some shady deals that might end up hanging more than just the capitalists.

by: Fred from: Italy
December 06, 2008 07:49
As a professor of international relations and geopolitics, I've met several Russian students who've told me that - according to some Russian professors or high-rank military - the world is "dominated by 300 wealthy families who are, in fact, a secret world government". It is alarming to find out that even educated people in Russia propagate ridiculous conspiracy theories, and contribute to shape a wrong and insane world vision in young people who will form the ruling class of tomorrow's Russia.

by: Giorgi from: Georgia
December 10, 2008 06:56
sure there is no financial crisis in russia, its just thousands of workers getting a lot of vacation time, well, OK most of it is unpaid vacation. but there is no crisis, who said crisis, you? aaa then my comrade you will go to jail cause as our magnificent premier have said, all those who will mutter a word "crisis" or "depression", etc. will face severe punishment. yep, russians will blame everybody for their mishaps except for themselves. the most resource aboundnt nation in the world throwing comspiracy theory tantrums, insted of doing something to raise the economy and bring the 60% of russian citizens out of poverty. but then those 60% are the poor cause the 300 of the wealthiest families took their money away. and it works better that way

by: Dr. Know from: Kanada
December 11, 2008 18:08
Omer and FDR know the truth.<br />Fred in Italy got his professorial position because he does toe the zionist line zo well.<br />Unfortunately for Giorgi in Georgia, he has Israeli citizens running his country.

by: Giorgi from: Georgia
December 13, 2008 14:22
Dr.Know<br />there is no such thing as conspiracy, there are facts. fact no one - there is a rulling class worldwide, including kanada. fact number two - communist revolution was financed by those ruling elites. fact number three, that same ruling elite also thrives in kremlin..and in canada as well. four - jewish diaspora lived in georgia for more than 20 centuries, do you want to say should we start segregating againt jews in the government especially given the fact that they are natural born georgian citizens?

by: Dietrich from: USA
December 13, 2008 19:50
No, sir, the &quot;color revolutions&quot; of E. Europe were fabricated by Zionist Jews such as George Soros who funded these political abortions to the tune of millions in order to buy enough media to influence the public. It's a bit sad to see what happens when the buzz wears off and reality sets in, though I'm glad to see that NATO has been kept out of Russia's traditional sphere of influence by her own stupidity, signaled most recently by Germany's Merkel announcing her disinterest in NATO expansion in Moscow last month.<br /><br />This isn't a conspiracy theory, it's a conspiracy fact. But you can label it however you want--it only matters whether the &quot;conspiracy theorists&quot; are right or wrong, and it appears that the Israeli/US/Zionist faction has a large handing in meddling in Russias affairs, not to mention the economic crisis emanating from the US.<br /><br />The same people who knocked over Russia in 1917 are now doing it to us. If he's out there, may God help us all.

by: Albert from: Russia
February 11, 2009 09:32
Well, obviously smth.is going on, and I don't believe that it started out of nowhere (crisis). But Russia picked it up very quickly, russian ruble is tight up to $U.S.,so, whatever is happening to dollar it effects ruble right away. While everybody say crisis,crisis, many organizations and financial institutions making all kind of deals. It's like a money laundry. As far as conspiracy concern,people can not live without it, it is human factor. If we look back throughout the history,especially midevil times, thus we know that conspiracy always existed. Now it is probably another historical moment, it's kind of predictable

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