Russian culture is an instrument of imperialism and colonialism.

Nowhereman

Member
I'm Ukrainian. I live in Israel now - it wasn't my choice, but the result of many circumstances, starting from covid-19 and ending the current war in Ukraine.

I'll write here about how I stopped consuming the Russian culture - and how it changed my mind.

When I was a child and teen, I went to a Soviet school. Even though I finished school in 1993 - and the SU collapsed in 1991 - we still were taught by the soviet textbooks. So we never heard of the Ukrainian People's Republic in 1917-1921(23), independent of Russia and recognized or about to be recognized by most European countries. We never heard about The Cossack Hetmanate - a Ukrainian Cossack state in 1648-1782.

Shortly speaking, we'd been taught that Ukraine was always a natural part of Russia - though, in fact, Ukraine was occupied by Russia for most of its history. I knew it only after graduating univ in the 2000th. But I still considered Russians our "friend nation" (not "brother" though - but anyway). I was visiting my friends in SPb and Moscow in 2012-13.

All changed at the beginning of 2014. When Russia occupied Ukrainian Crimea at the end of February - and annexed it at the beginning of March. After this, millions of Ukrainian men drown up in queues before military registration offices - to protect Ukrainian land from Russian occupants. Then Russians invaded Donbas. Yes, we'd all heard lies about DPR and LPR. But the higher command of these so-called "armies" are (since then - and still!) accomplished by generals of the Russian army. It was proved in 2015 - with the specific names of those generals.

So in 2015, I decided I didn't want anymore to consume any Russian culture - from classic literature to podcasts. I was "brain-raped" by it in the soviet school. So I've thought it's time to stop.

Since then, I've started feeling that my brain was becoming clearer.

Here I need to give a remark. If you want to know more - please read Ewa Thompson's book "Imperial Knowledge: Russian Literature and Colonialism". Miss Ewa published this research 22 years ago.

In 2015th, I stopped consuming any Russian content. And I felt how it changed me! When I read or hear something in Russian, I can now distinguish Russians from Russian-speaking Ukrainians or residents of other post-Soviet countries. The Russians felt to me like slaves of their imperial regime.

After that, I and my then-GF had an exciting experience. She'd found a TV series about a female CIA agent who finally married a male FSB agent, moved to Russia, and became a double agent for the CIA. We couldn't find the Ukrainian dubbing-in. And my GF didn't know English well enough. So we decided to view it in Russian. For me, it was most interesting how they changed the translation compared to the original text. Although I could hear only small parts of the original text through the translation, the differences were not only significant - they were critical.

My GF said:
- Wow! their propaganda is so significant that they even put it inside movie translations?
- I think it's vice versa. - I've answered. - Their propaganda is such effective that even translators and voice actors don't feel how much it influences their brains.

Now I feel my brain is entirely free from this influence. Because of learning real (not Russian-cheated) Ukrainian history. And because of refusal of so-called "Russian culture" - which is not culture at all - but lying propaganda itself.

P.S. I'd appreciate and would be thankful for any comments and reactions.
 
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powerpuffgrl1969

Active member
It's incredibly interesting to read about this from someone who really lived it. Americans have a tendency to learn only about the U.S. if that! Thank you. Please share more.
 

ref2018

Maid of All Work
Staff member
I'm curious what do you think of Gorbachev? Generally speaking, he is thought of as a kind of "hero" outside of Russia/former USSR, but inside of Russia, he is like a villain who wrecked the country. As someone who was brainwashed as a child by all the Soviet propaganda, but actually not a Russian, what did you think of him at that time, and has your view changed over time?

I'm interested because my family is from Poland (Horyniec-Zdroj, Podkarpackie), and they too had to learn Russian and all that in school growing up.
 

Nowhereman

Member
I'm curious what do you think of Gorbachev? Generally speaking, he is thought of as a kind of "hero" outside of Russia/former USSR, but inside of Russia, he is like a villain who wrecked the country. As someone who was brainwashed as a child by all the Soviet propaganda, but actually not a Russian, what did you think of him at that time, and has your view changed over time?

I'm interested because my family is from Poland (Horyniec-Zdroj, Podkarpackie), and they too had to learn Russian and all that in school growing up.
Most Russians are still imperialists and chauvinists. Even most of those who call themselves "liberals". That's why they hate Gorbachyov. They agree with "hutin-puilo" who said that the breakup of the SU was "the biggest geo-political catastrophe of the XX-th century). For me, who just turned 15 in 1991, it was the happiest event in my life - and it still is. I think the next happiest event would be Ukraine's victory in the current war. And I'm sure for many Ukrainians, both are the same, especially for younger people - even those born after our independence.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
It sounds like in spite of the breakup of the Soviet Union, there is still a lot of propaganda in russian culture.
 

Nowhereman

Member
And I'm sure for many Ukrainians
Oh, and not only for Ukrainians. I think the breakup of the SU was a positive thing for most citizens of other "republics" (post-soviet countries now). As the breakup of the "Warsaw block" was also a happy event for its members' citizens (like the citizens of Poland you've mentioned).
Also, I'm sure the departure of the current RF (which is still an empire) would be a happy holiday for all other nations who live there. I hope it happens soon enough for me to celebrate it with my friends - from the Komi republic - to the Chechen republic of Ichkeria, Ingushetia, and Dagestan; And from Kuban - to Yakutia.
 

Nowhereman

Member
It sounds like in spite of the breakup of the Soviet Union, there is still a lot of propaganda in russian culture.
It's because Russia is still an empire - as I've mentioned in my previous message.
 

Eponine

Active member
I can relate to a lot of what you said, because it's similar in China - the propaganda (e.g. "Taiwan has always been an inseparable part of China" and "Western democracy wouldn't work in China"), the censorship, the brain-washed people. And it would be a happy holiday for me and my friends if/when the CCP collapses.

I still consume Chinese culture, both classic and contemporary, but probably much less than many Chinese people overseas do. I avoid the propaganda-heavy stuff. I'm glad to hear you feel liberated by rejecting Russian culture altogether, even if I don't completely relate to it.
 

Nowhereman

Member
I can relate to a lot of what you said, because it's similar in China - the propaganda (e.g. "Taiwan has always been an inseparable part of China" and "Western democracy wouldn't work in China"), the censorship, the brain-washed people. And it would be a happy holiday for me and my friends if/when the CCP collapses.
Yes, it's all very similar. A lot of Ukrainians, Belarusians, and other nations that had been occupied by russia are often comparing russia to China in this meaning.

I still consume Chinese culture, both classic and contemporary, but probably much less than many Chinese people overseas do. I avoid the propaganda-heavy stuff. I'm glad to hear you feel liberated by rejecting Russian culture altogether, even if I don't completely relate to it.
Here is a significant difference between russia and China. China has thousands of years of history - and history of culture in particular. I know not too much about Chinese history - but I believe there were very different periods in this long time.

With russia and Ukraine, it's completely different. The official version of the date of the foundation of Kyiv is 482nd year (but unofficially, there are proves it existed even earlier) - which became the capital of the country now called Kyivan Rus'. Its real name was simply Rus' - and the "Kyivan" word was added by Moscovian propaganda only about 150 years ago (it's another long story - maybe I'll write it later).

Moscow was founded in the 1147th year - 665 years later - by a Kievan grand duke. Then in 1721, Moscovian tzar Piotr, the first, decided to steal Rus's name - and then history - and "renamed" the Moscovian Kingdom to Russian Empire. Moscovia always was - and still is - a state of barbarians, occupants, massive killers, total liars, and terrorists. A wide-known example is the Baturyn massacre, which Moscovites made in the Ukrainian Cossacks state's capital Baturyn in 1708 - the tzar Piotr's direct order was to kill all people in the city, from infants to elderly people, both males, and females. How it's similar to what their descendants are doing now in many cities and towns of Ukraine!

The same they were (and are) doing to the Ukrainian culture for centuries (at least starting from the early-mid 1600th). They were banning the Ukrainian language and literature; massively killing Ukrainian artists and poets; destroying Ukrainian schools - and replacing them with Moscovians.

And all of this is not only about the Ukrainians - dozens of other nations could tell similar stories about Moscovites. So, in my opinion, the Moscovian culture, during all centuries of its existence, is mostly (not only - but mostly) a history of learning how to destroy, torture, and hate other nations around them.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
I don't study history like I should, but I have to admit I'm surprised (and disappointed) by how barbaric russia has acted towards its neighbors.

I was disgusted to hear (on Wikipedia I think) that Putin had characterized his invasion of Ukraine as a "peacekeeping mission." I'd hate to see what "war" looked like!
 

Evie

Kaitiaki
Staff member
Oh the irony.
 

Eponine

Active member
Here is a significant difference between russia and China. China has thousands of years of history - and history of culture in particular. I know not too much about Chinese history - but I believe there were very different periods in this long time.

With russia and Ukraine, it's completely different. The official version of the date of the foundation of Kyiv is 482nd year (but unofficially, there are proves it existed even earlier) - which became the capital of the country now called Kyivan Rus'. Its real name was simply Rus' - and the "Kyivan" word was added by Moscovian propaganda only about 150 years ago (it's another long story - maybe I'll write it later).

Moscow was founded in the 1147th year - 665 years later - by a Kievan grand duke. Then in 1721, Moscovian tzar Piotr, the first, decided to steal Rus's name - and then history - and "renamed" the Moscovian Kingdom to Russian Empire. Moscovia always was - and still is - a state of barbarians, occupants, massive killers, total liars, and terrorists. A wide-known example is the Baturyn massacre, which Moscovites made in the Ukrainian Cossacks state's capital Baturyn in 1708 - the tzar Piotr's direct order was to kill all people in the city, from infants to elderly people, both males, and females. How it's similar to what their descendants are doing now in many cities and towns of Ukraine!

The same they were (and are) doing to the Ukrainian culture for centuries (at least starting from the early-mid 1600th). They were banning the Ukrainian language and literature; massively killing Ukrainian artists and poets; destroying Ukrainian schools - and replacing them with Moscovians.

And all of this is not only about the Ukrainians - dozens of other nations could tell similar stories about Moscovites. So, in my opinion, the Moscovian culture, during all centuries of its existence, is mostly (not only - but mostly) a history of learning how to destroy, torture, and hate other nations around them.
That's true. China has a much longer history, with better and worse times. I'm pretty bad at history and didn't realize the history of Russian Empire was actually fairly short and full of brutal acts. What they're doing to Ukrainian culture sounds similar to what the CCP is doing to Uyghurs and Tibetans.

Do you have any Russian friends (either in Russia or overseas)? I imagine it's like China, where most people blindly support the government, but there are still dissidents.
 

Nowhereman

Member
That's true. China has a much longer history, with better and worse times. I'm pretty bad at history and didn't realize the history of Russian Empire was actually fairly short and full of brutal acts. What they're doing to Ukrainian culture sounds similar to what the CCP is doing to Uyghurs and Tibetans.
Oh, I've heard something about Uyghurs and Tibetans. Yes, it sounds similar. Not exactly the same - but some parallels are pretty obvious.

Do you have any Russian friends (either in Russia or overseas)? I imagine it's like China, where most people blindly support the government, but there are still dissidents.
I have some. Before 2013-14 I'd (thought I'd) have thousand of russian friends. Now I have one FB friend in Moscow - he can't move abroad now but wish by the whole soul for russia to break down (like the SU did). I have two formerly close friends there who ran into "internal immigration". When I tried to write to any of them, her answers were for me "from another world".

I have some friends who moved from russia to other countries - including Ukraine. Most of them stopped using the russian language - and switched to Ukrainian or English.

The most striking example of my former Russian friends. 2014. Me:
- If I were healthy enough - I would be in the Ukrainian contract army in Donbas now.
- I'm thinking seriously about going to the russian Donbas forces against Ukraine.
- If I'd seen you in my gun sight - do you think my eye or finger would stop for even thousands part of second before killing you?
It was our last contact.
 

Eponine

Active member
I have two formerly close friends there who ran into "internal immigration". When I tried to write to any of them, her answers were for me "from another world".
Not sure I understand this part correctly. Does it mean they were sent somewhere bad by the government?
 

Nowhereman

Member
Americans commenting on war and propaganda.
Oh-wow! Moscovits are trying to destroy us physically. Americans are giving us some weapons (which are obviously not enough) and are "commenting on war and propaganda"! Americans didn't make even a few percent invasions to independent countries compared to Moscovians during the last few centuries. And I can't find the original author of these words - but it's a complete truth: "There were more bloody regimes in history than Moscovian. There were more tyranic regimes. But there never were - and never would be - more lying regimes than Moscovian's".

P.S. I hope you understand me using words "Mockovians" and "Moscovits" instead of "Russians" after my explanation how they've stolen the name "Rus" from the real Rus - modern Ukraine.
 
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