Russia and us, by Santi Terraza

there are no two wars the same, nor two exact conflicts. Two more repeated war scenarios, two more mimetic discouraging strategies. Each operation starts from a different geopolitical, military and economic context and from specific conditions. Even now, in the case of Russia and Ukraine, an area that is far, very far (from many points of view) from the Iberian Peninsula.

The “Not after the war” with which 90% of the Spanish population identified in 2003 in the face of the absurdity of Bush, Blair and Aznar in Iraq It is not at all transferable to the pre-war escalation between Putin and Biden, despite the proclamations of the Podemos leaders, who need new references on the street and in the underworld of social networks. Nor would the justified intervention of the United States in Bosnia to stop the Serbian massacres, in the light of European passivity, as an example of what needs to be done in Ukraine. The conflict between Moscow and Kiev, if finally carried out, would be the first supranational war in Europe with the direct intervention of a military force since 1945. Nothing has been written about this before; The Soviet failure did not end in Afghanistan.

Bosnia has aroused a deep sense of solidarity – and cooperation – among the Catalan population; Iraq has provoked furious protests against the nonsense of the Azores leaders, and Syria unleashed cross-cutting outrage over the collateral damage suffered by refugees. But none of this serves to measure how a war between Russia and Ukraine would affect Catalan societies and the state as a whole, except the economic repercussion due to the rise in the cost of energy services.

Because if there is a clear difference between the Iberian Peninsula (including Portugal, of course) and the rest of Europe in terms of the international sphere, it is fundamentally the low level of geopolitical dependence on Russia. It is not only a matter of distance (Madrid is more than twice as many kilometers from Moscow as Berlin), but also of political imprint, economic influence and cultural background.

Today’s sociopolitics is a result of the management of yesterday’s maps. The Russian heritage in France (from the Napoleonic invasion of Russia to the alliance in the Great War) remains resilient in a country that never gives up on exercising its own criteria in international politics. A country that, moreover, as president has one of the few statesmen in Europe and who does not have to ask permission to meet with whomever he deems appropriate: Macron –As before De Gaulle, Mitterrand, Chirac and even Sarkozy– has his own story on the international agenda.

In Germany, the Russian winds always arrive with the power of the Levant. Due to its geographical location, its cyclical history and its economic capacity, any movement coming from the east it affects you completely. And it tends to be against him. All the wars with Russia were paid dearly. And it would not be less so, even if it was only limited to the (important) consequences arising from the energy supply.

Also Italy has historically had an eye on the East. At least since the times of Marco Polo. And in recent years he has not made a few movements of rapprochement with Russia – some of them with the clear intention of destabilizing the EU – led by the populism of the League and M5S. But there was also by the ‘establishment, which seeks to exploit the vast markets of Eastern Europe and Asia. This very week, some of the most important Italian businessmen met electronically with Vladimir Putin himself. Something that would be unthinkable transferred to Spain.

The movements of a frigate, irrelevant from a military point of view, and the false pacifism of a so-called renewed ‘No to war’ are nothing more than gestures

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Instead, the Russian footprint in Spain contemporary was limited to isolated episodes in the Civil War or, shortly thereafter, to the ungrateful participation of the Blue Division in the siege of Leningrad. Not only in the most extreme political formations (right and left) have they succeeded in making a possible adherence to the Russian cause act as an anti-system element of relative influence. Not to mention the delusions of a part of the most uncompromising independence movement that once dreamed of Putin entering Diagonal…

Spain was Atlantis long before Felipe’s referendum in 1985. But it is not a military force at all and also cannot play a relevant role in the conflict. There is no doubt that his position in the defense of Ukraine’s sovereignty and of Western and democratic values, something that seems to be failing in Putin’s Russia. But the gesticulation of the movements of a frigate – irrelevant from a military point of view – and the false pacifism of a so-called renewed ‘No to war’ is just that, hybridization. Russia is far away.

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