Monday’s Financial Times [June 19, 2006] has a full-page article on the emerging “corporate statism” in Russia which will interest anyone trying to keep tabs on the emergence of the Neo-Fascist states around the world.
It’s a good article on the recent and current situation. It deals extensively with the way in which the Siloviki [the insider, state security bureaucrats from the KGB, GRU, MVD, Red Army, etc.] have become the dominant government and Big Corp. rulers in Russia. Like Putin [originally KGB and then finally head of all the security forces before becoming Pres.], the movement in Russia is from the Big Military-Police to the Big Corps. In the U.S. the movement used to be from the Big Corps. to Big Govt., but now the U.S. is more like the new Russia: Bush [son of the Director of the CIA] and Cheney [DOD then Halliburton and back to government] moved from the secret world of the security forces to Big Corp. and then the top of government. Rumsfeld is a little more complex, but shows the merging of Big Corp. and Big Military-Secret Police. Powell at State and now Hayden at CIA show the general trend. [Rice was not a Special Ops or CIA — or was she? But she is a figure-head, not a ruler at State.]
The Soviet Party always feared the Bonaparte scenario in which the security forces take control of the state. Putin and the Siloviki are the embodiment of that Party nightmare. The same thing is happening here, though Americans still seem to like a little more distance between the secret police and military rulers and the quasi-civilian rulers. MacArthur was rejected as too Caesarian — or Banapartian. Eisenhower carefully planned his years after WWII as civilian Pres. of Colombia to blur that military image and in his farewell address warned Americans to stop exactly what he did as President in building the immense Military-Industrial Neo-Fascist System.
Putin is rapidly emerging as the Role Model for the Neo-Fascist states being built around the world. Chavez in Venezuela, for example, seems to be trying to follow in his footsteps, though that is a bit hard because Putin is a very intelligent and, thus far, masterful manipulator of the Neo-Fascist System. If Putin can create a firm alliance of Russia with China, Iran-Iraq [if the Shiites win in Iraq], Venezuela, and either Pakistan or India [but not likely both], and lesser powers, the world will be presented with a serious counter-weight to the U.S. Empire. The alliance of Russian, Iranian-Iraq, and Venezuelan oil (and heavy oil in Venezuela) and gas would quite eclipse the U.S.-OPEC energy alliance and provide a firm financial foundation for their New Empire while the U.S. is destroying its financial foundation with stupid wars and wasting its declining energy reserves. Putin seems to be moving in that direction very skillfully. His approval ratings in the Russian Rump-Empire are sky-high, thanks in good part to their huge energy reserves, gold, diamonds, and all the other natural assets. If he can win in Chechnya, checkmate the U.S. on Iran, and help maneuver Iran and Iraq into his orbit in defeating the U.S. in Iraq, then help guerillas cut the U.S. energy lifeline being built thousands of miles across former Soviet territory in Central Asia to Turkey, he will emerge as a very powerful world quasi-dictator, perhaps the Savior from the American Empire. Putin is such a bright person he probably has all kinds of schemes like that he is playing with creatively every day. The catastrophic mistakes of the U.S. under the Bush Junta have opened up endless possibilities for him and his allies.
Jack D. Douglas [send him mail] is a retired professor of sociology from the University of California at San Diego. He has published widely on all major aspects of human beings, most notably The Myth of the Welfare State.