Why Russia Will Succeed Against All Adversity

I have never in my life seen such a moving theatrical spectacle as I just witnessed, played out on the grand scale with a cast of thousands in front of an open air audience, both consisting of several generations of Russians, many of them moved to tears. President Xi and wife were there as guests too, I note. And a Russian president who was also obviously deeply moved.

I was also deeply moved, notwithstanding my inability to understand a word of what was said. That didn’t seem to matter. But a knowledge of the history and of the occasion being celebrated was of inestimable importance.

This was May 9, 2015 in Moscow and I send a big thank you to Andrei Martyanov for sharing this today I recommend, if you have an hour and a half to spare (or even if you don’t – beats any netflicking you could do), that you spend that time watching this excellent video.

I have been thinking a lot about relevance in recent days. I, and I guess many of my readers would be what I now think of as last century people, having lived for most of my life during that time. It’s a grey area, at least for me, and I shrink from actually referring to myself as a “yesterday’s person”, with all that entails and embodies – although I have used the term in reference to other people in the past. I guess the passage of time is catching up with me. I do now recognise that I am a 20th century person who is intruding, hopefully not disrespectfully, into the 21st – knowing that this century now belongs to a new generation. May all the powers of the universe, wherever, whatever, or whether such there be, grant them the wisdom to better look after it and themselves better than how the human delegates to the previous century did with theirs.

This is something of a perennial (or should that be ‘per’centurial or even ‘per’decadal and perhaps even ‘per’generational) problem – but let’s not get bogged down in details. We only have to look back to the previous turn of the century (the one before that which most of us have lived through).

As the 19th changed to the 20th century (a time when the world’s population was only one fourth of what it is today, we should note), most of the world’s leaders, just like todays, were doyens of the century just ended. The young and the female components of human civilisation, along with all the peoples of the vast majority of cultures remote from western civilisation, had no say whatsoever in the running of the ‘business’ of ‘civilised’ government. After a century (and not for the first time) of wars of conquest, at the end of which there was not much left to conquer, they, having no-one else to fight, squabbled among themselves to engineer the first major global conflict – not too many years into the century before we may now repeat history by doing the same thing ourselves – that set the precedent for what has now become constant war and terror covering anywhere in the globe except for the mostly western lands.

“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

George Santayana

We, today, that is – many of us – have forgotten (or have not been correctly informed of) history. The consequences are inevitable. But let’s get back to my theme…

So who is a last century person and what does it mean? How is that defined? I will give you my perception of it . You are welcome to choose your own – and I suggest you do. Or at least have a good think about it.

Let me begin by saying what it is not. It is, thankfully, not someone who has simply lived during most of the 20th century. That would include those who have done so but are of a sufficiently flexible mind that they can see that we are now living in different, perhaps even vastly different times than were extant when first they entered the world – and became capable of understanding such differences. Although such exceptions will undoubtedly still have their outlook on life, coloured in some indelible way (even if only subconsciously) by the times through which they have lived and the extent to which they have actively observed those times – and what they have learned from those observations. I, perhaps rather pompously (that is not for me to say), but with much grace and thankfulness for the opportunities which have fortuitously permitted my doing that, consider the latter category of people to be my lot in life. “Know thyself” is a great philosophical aphorism, and I think that I at least know that much about myself. But again, that is merely my perception, and I frequently remind myself also that “I believe that I know nothing”. That last saying being a more likely attribution to Socrates than the more commonly referred to “I know that I know nothing”. How can you know nothing if you also ‘know’ that you know nothing?

It, that is being a last century person, refers to someone who most likely was born between the 1930s (since there would now be few people older than that) and the 1990s, who has seen and absorbed the values and memes of the 20th century to the point of being unable to leave them behind or comprehend the value and relevance of them (declining, remaining or increased, according to their own perception) in the present world. It may also be someone who was born during later years but has lived in a culture where inculcation or indoctrination into those same memes or even older ones is an ingrained tradition of that culture – which could happen anywhere, including in so-called western civilisation.

Anyway, to cut what could turn out to be a long story, short, I will say that a great many contemporary Russians have, like myself, lived through the momentous times of hte last century and many of them have reared children who have been brought up in the tradition of valuing and understanding the value of their cultural heritage. That is true patriotism – but let’s not get caught up in that discussion here.

In the video I just shared, you will see representatives from perhaps four generations of Russian heritage. It is something for them to be proud of that all four current generations still honour that heritage. Some of the younger, second youngest perhaps, generation have in recent times been seduced by western decadent but colourful (or should I use the language ‘colorful’ of the chief offender – always trying to raise some point of difference for themselves, or to make life easier for the growing proportion of least educated among them) sub-cultures, and have maybe moved away from their own. Most of this group, I suggest, forming the current Russian diaspora – or returning to become what is known as the Fifth Column, to foment internal discontent among others. This move will, I hope, not be allowed to gain traction in the nation. It is not the Russian way. Even I, as an outsider, can see that.

I want to give an example of that new generational fervency of Russian patriotism, because it is so important to the success of Russia’s current push to topple the west’s diabolical plans for the world. An effort by Russia, together with China and other like-minded nations, which I see as an essential component for the future of all mankind.

There is a famous old Russian war song, loved by every Russian, taught to children and sung eery May 9 celebration of their historic victory, achieved mostly alone, in the Great Patriotic War of the 1940s. It is called ‘We Need One Victory’. Andrei Martyanov – a writer, part of the Russian diaspora that has remained faithful to Russian culture and a great exponent of its current position and military power in the world – today also shared (in the same blog post) a video which has great bearing on what I just said, and again for which I thank him. It is a recording of a well known musical group – A’Studio – founded in 1982 and undergoing several re-generations of performing members, rendering this famous song before an audience of many thousands of mostly young people, all wholeheartedly singing along with gusto. This is good to see, and speaks well of Russia’s future. It also speak volumes about the relevancy of Russian tradition, history, and right to exist at the forefront of human endeavour, providing hope for us all in this still young and blossoming new century.

You don’t need to know the words, but I provide English lyrics below.

A’Studio – «Нам нужна одна победа» – loaded to YouTube 2011 but has the appearance of being much older than that – perhaps late 80s

The lyric translation below is mine, built from a number of sources and slightly altered for easier reading in English – but I can’t guarantee I have fully captured (or lost) some of the nuances of meaning.

War Songs – We need one victory

Music and Lyrics: B. Okudzhava

Birds don’t sing here.
Trees don’t grow.
And only we, shoulder to shoulder,
Grow into the ground here.

The planet burns and whirls.
Over our Homeland there is smoke.
And so we need one victory,
One for all – we will bear the cost.
One for all – we will bear the cost.

A deadly fire awaits us,
And yet it is powerless.
Doubts disappear into the night.
Our tenth amphibious battalion.
Our tenth amphibious battalion.

After the battle has died down,
Another order sounds.
And the postman will go crazy,
Looking for us.

A red rocket takes off,
Beats the indefatigable machine gun,
And then we’ll need one victory,
One for all – we will bear the cost.
One for all – we will bear the cost.


From Kursk and Orel
The war brought us,
All the way to the enemy’s gates.
Such, brother, is the case.

Someday we’ll remember it,
And we won’t believe it ourselves.
And now we need one victory,
One for all – we will bear the cost.
One for all – we will bear the cost.


My keyboard letter ‘v’ is sticking (must be a crumb under it or something). I have tried to eliminate all occurrences but if you see a word that does not make sense, try adding a ‘v’ somewhere in it.

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