Well, Russia is very much on everyone’s mind at this moment, of course.Western minds anyway – the West concerned with Putin upon the Ukraine while we in the Middle East are concerned with Yemini drones placed upon Abu Dhabi.
In the never ending quest to become well informed began reading a New Yorker article on Putin later and thereupon became shocked and dismayed when entering into the realm of further research. The topic was Alexander III, dimly recalled from far away years that he was a great leader, this was immediately confirmed. ‘Alexander III is known as the “czar peacemaker” because under his rule the empire remained at peace except for minor, although costly, military expeditions in central Asia. Relations with England were greatly improved, and France replaced Germany as Russia’s ally.’
But this is what got me started. An article, written by David Remnick, my former hero, the editor of the New Yorker. The subtitle: “Once more, the Russian President is poised to invade the nation. His weapons include military hardware, malware, and propaganda.” Propaganda can be found in news and journalism, government, advertising, entertainment, education, and activism and is often associated with material which is prepared by governments as part of war efforts, political campaigns, health campaigns, revolutionaries. Remnick begins:” Vladimir Putin presents himself to his citizens and to the world as the standard-bearer of a modern counter-enlightenment. He has declared liberal democracy “obsolete,” a political arrangement that has “outlived its purpose.” One of his historical role models is said to be Alexander III, a reactionary tsar in the Romanov dynasty who instituted draconian restrictions on the press, sought to “Russify” his multi-ethnic empire, and mobilized against internal and external threats. Four years ago, Putin expressed his deep admiration for the tsar while visiting the Crimean Peninsula, a substantial and distinctly unthreatening parcel of Ukraine that Russia invaded in 2014 and has occupied ever since.”
My long ago Russian familiarity recalled positive vibes for Alexander III. He was a good guy. Research confirmed this impression. He was a peacemaker, Mr. Remnick. Where did you get your information and what are you maligning the character of this leader? Malign, a great word, means speak about (someone) in a spitefully critical manner. The synonyms for that word are rife: slander, libel, blacken someone’s name/character, smear, run a smear campaign against, vilify, speak ill of, spread lies about, accuse falsely, cast aspersions on, run down, misrepresent, denigrate, disparage, slur, derogate, revile; bad-mouth, knock, drag through the mud/mire, throw/sling/fling mud at, do a hatchet job on. Why in the world are you bad-mouthing, doing a hatchet job on, casting aspersions on Czar Alexander III. This appears to be propaganda on the part of Mr. Remnick. That is, as you recall, information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.” What is your political cause Mr. Remnick?
I have been to Russia, it had to be in 1996 or thereabouts. Not only have I been in Russia but have spoken to many young Russians, particularly during my London Days (2014-2017). There was a uniformity of opinion – Putin is a good guy. His efforts halted the robbing of Russian resources and riches. However, the USA consistently portrays him as a villain. One must wonder why? I did not read the remainder of Remnick’s article. It starts out with lies and misrepresentation, why should I think it is going to suddenly tell the truth? I do NOT think so.
Decided instead to cast some light upon the character of Mr. Remnick and I was startled, absolutely blown away. I did correctly surmise that he is Jewish. But he apparently speaks Russian and has written books about Russia. He is not proceeding in his denigration out of ignorance because he knows better. Wikipedia says of him: “David J. Remnick (born October 29, 1958) is an American journalist and writer. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1994 for his book Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire and is also the author of Resurrection and King of the World: Muhammad Ali and the Rise of an American Hero. Remnick has been editor of The New Yorker magazine since 1998. He was named Editor of the Year by Advertising Age in 2000. Before joining The New Yorker, Remnick was a reporter and the Moscow correspondent for The Washington Post.”
But there has been a prior example of Mr. Remnick being less than honest in his reportage. This also from Wikipedia. ”In the months leading up to the Iraqi War the magazine also published several articles connecting Saddam Hussein to al-Qaida, often relying on unnamed sources, or simply the claims of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, as evidence. The magazine received some criticism for their journalism during this period.] The claims that Hussein and al-Qaida had a close operational relationship were false, as confirmed by numerous sources including a U.S military study in 2008.”
So, quite frankly I am totally confused. Why is Mr. Remnick vilifying an historical figure to denigrate a present day leader – it makes no sense whatsoever. I have held The New Yorker and its fact checking in high regard and rely upon my subscription to bring me the truth about the world. The publication has recently disappointed me by the total lack of attention and concern to the Middle East. But this writing, on the part of its editor is an egregious blow.
On January 7, 2022 Mr. Remnick spoke with Jill LePore about the decline of democracy. I would argue that Mr. Remnick is not advancing the cause of democracy. The broadcast concerns itself with lies and how they destroy the fabric of democracy. Here is the link:
Gentle Readers, there is much work ahead for you. Googling Alexander III, Googling David Remnick, listening to a video. You shall see that I am telling the truth about history.
Not only have I spoken to Russians, but also have a Ukrainian friend, met at the Rixos Resort during our stay there. He is not happy with Putin, we do not have nuanced discussions about Putin. He has a right to his viewpoint as the Ukraine is his country. But neither the Ukraine nor Russia is Remnick’s country.
But onto brighter and better things. On January 7,2022 went to Expo 2020 accompanied by Grandson. It was such a delightful day, the very best. We only toured one Pavilion – the Russian Pavilion. It was grand, led me to an appreciation of the contributions Russia has made to the world. One photograph is what greets you when you walk in the door. It shows all of the accomplishments given to us by Russians. There is also a photo of the exterior of the Pavilion taken by Grandson. And some of the interior – with wise sayings about personality I thought originated by Wise Man. I doubt that Wise Man ever visited Russia – so knowledge can be transmitted amongst countries. It is those pesky leaders that get in the way.
I know of one world leader that does not get in the way of knowledge, information and humanitarian efforts. He tirelessly fights for peace, at all times but even when his country and his peoples are attacked. This leader was not elected, he does not rule a democracy. He is the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi. The Commander in Chief of the UAE Forces.
I do not know this for certain and I have never met him. But he does not lie, he is deeply religious in a meaningful way. He is, of course, a Muslim.