CONTRIBUTORS / CULTURE / FEATURED POST / GENERAL PRETENSION / PROSE / WORD SLINGING

What’s a Pussy Riot? by Ian Svenonius

In 2012, Pussy Riot, a feminist performance art-punk troupe, captured the Western imagination with their anti-authoritarian raid on an orthodox church.Freeing them from their subsequent incarceration became a sexy “cause célébre”. The internet veritably exploded with concern for the women in the group and op stars of the squarest variety (Red Hot Chili Peppers, Faith No More, Madonna, and Sir Paul McCartney) lined up to finger wag the Russian government for their “repression of personal expression.”

All the major media outlets followed Pussy Riot’s trial with bated breath and reprinted the closing statements of these modern day Galileos with indignation and harrumphing.

Why the incredible international concern for a civil trial in a faraway foreign country from the otherwise apolitical residents of a nation (the USA) which murders people with impunity every day in a half dozen countries (Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Somali, Libya, Syria), which wages covert war on Iran, which incarcerates over 3 million of its own population, and runs a torture base in a bay which it illegally occupies (Guantanamo)?

The root is geo politics. Russia’s government is doubtlessly venal and indefensible in its treatment of these activists and they should be freed post haste. However, the paranoia of Russian officials in suspecting that Pussy Riot and other anti-Putin activists are organized and funded by foreign powers is well founded. Since the Cold War, the US and NATO states have aggressively attempted to control the Caspian region and the former Soviet states, either through bribery or election tampering. The Orange Revolution, the Rose Revolution, and the election of Boris Yeltsin were massively funded by US “NGOs” such as the National Endowment for Democracy.

NATO, an anti-Soviet alliance, has now expanded to include almost all the former Soviet states so as to surround Russia, and the Central Asian SSRs even feature permanent US military bases (implanted after 9/11 to help invade Afghanistan) to further threaten and cajole Russia.

Meanwhile, the US government and its lapdog media make no secret of its Anti-Putin sensibility, due to his government’s anti-west rhetoric, and its obstinate refusal to marginalize Iran and Syria’s secular Assad “regime.” The Bush administration’s neo-conservative “Plan for a New American Century” envisioned a Middle East remade for American oil companies and Israeli expansion. They desired regime change in Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Syria, Libya, and other nations. This meant promoting a fractious, broken landscape of in-fighting religious fanatics, battling for tribal and secular supremacy. Divide and conquer is the most effective Imperialist tactic.

After Bush left the job only half done, Obama picked up where he left off with Libya; the merciless bombing of a sovereign country, intervention in a staged “civil war”, and the actual assassination of the country’s leader, Gaddafi. Madonna and the Red Hot Chili Peppers were silent on this Colonial slaughter which left the African nation with the highest standard of living for its people in ruins.

Syria’s government in the meantime, has been in American sights for a long time, being one of Bush’s “Axis of Evil.” The civil war the US started has been a great success. CIA and US proxies such as Saudi Arabia have been shipping in the usual jihadist fanatics (just like we did in Serbia, Iraq, Libya, and Carter’s Afghan war) and the NYT as usual, fawns over them as the “FREE SYRIAN ARMY” without ever discussing their aims or ideology. But why?

As an ally of Iran, Assad’s downfall is the last step to completely isolating Iran for US/Israeli destruction of that country. Except that pesky Putin is still trading with both of those countries. And he has a seat on the otherwise reliably Imperialist Security Council of the UN (which is, in practice, just a nice cover for Western neo-colonial intervention of rebellious subjects). So Putin must be taken down too. He’s in the way of whitey destroying the last coherent social infrastructure in the Middle East. He’s in the way of reducing the A-rabs to total degradation. He’s in the way of total control of oil resources. For whitey, the Persians and Arabs are meant to be spoken of wistfully like the Algonquin or Iroquois; a romantic but apparently disappeared civilization.

How do we do it? Hmmm… how about we use “punk”?

Ian Svenonius is a wordsmith and current member of the rock n’ roll group Chain & the Gang. Some of his previous projects include fronting legendary punk group The Nation of Ulysses and “Gospel Yeh-Yeh” band The Make-Up. He is also author of a collection of articles and essays entitled The Psychic Soviet.

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One thought on “What’s a Pussy Riot? by Ian Svenonius

  1. Pingback: HERE, LET ME EXPLAIN by Vladimir Putin « RASCALmagazine

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