Original: Colonel Cassad
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov
Preamble: This acerbic parody draws inspiration from the statements of various public figures in both Russia and Novorossiya, many of them self-styled advocates of the Kremlin’s point of view and proponents of Minsk negotiations and the various painfully ridiculous geopolitical stratagems that have been collectively designated as the “cunning plan.” Many of the quotations from statements made by these opportunists are used almost verbatim, with appropriate substitutions, where necessary, of Germany for Ukraine, Ostland Reichskomissariat for the DPR and the LPR, and so forth. Understanding how preposterous statements like these would have sounded coming from the victors of the Great Patriotic War, the people who defeated the scourge of fascism in Europe, should jolt many into understanding some of the troubling aspects of the passive Russian policies in relation to the war in Ukraine and the failure of the government to explain its motivations.
Zhukov: “There is no need to liberate Kharkov because most Kharkovites support the European vector of development.”
Stalin: “The movement of German troops toward Moscow is movement in the right direction.”
Zhdanov: “I am optimistic about the Law of Special Regime of Local Self-Governance in certain areas of the Ostland Reichskomissariat.”
Representative of the NKVD: “Everyone who demands that we fight until all the German troops are expelled from the territory of the USSR is a secret agent of the Gestapo.”
Expert of the Moscow State University, Department of Marxism-Leninism: “Since we are not seeing mass protests against German policies in Ukraine, it can be said that the majority of Ukrainians support the course toward euro-integration.”
Sidor Kovpak: “My attitude toward Bandera and Shukhevich is neutral.”
Narkomfin Expert: “The restoration of the western part of the USSR in the event it is liberated would require financial investments prohibitive for the Soviet economy.”
Kalinin, Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR: “We must establish inclusive dialogue with the German side.”
Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union: “Opinion polls demonstrate that the majority of Soviet citizens consider the liberation of Belarus unnecessary—if Byelorussians were unhappy with the policies of the occupation authorities, they would have liberated themselves.”
USSR GosTeleRadio, Channel One: “The retreat of Soviet troops from Leningrad will allow us to avoid mass starvation among the population during the winter period.”
History Expert: “Twenty years ago, Ukrainians betrayed Russia, fighting under the banners of Makhno and Petlyura, and that is why it is simply foolish to sacrifice Russian soldiers to liberate these traitors from the Germans.”
Jurist: “The people’s militia cannot be sent to defend Moscow because its structure has not been institutionally formulated.”
Marshall Govorov: “The creation of a buffer zone along the line of contact between the Red Army and the Wehrmacht in the Moscow area would facilitate the de-escalation of the Soviet-German conflict. That is why it is critical for us to withdraw our artillery deep into the territory under our control.”
Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars, V. Molotov: “We are using all the diplomatic methods available to us to bring about a speedy resolution to the conflict and the implementation of inclusive dialogue between the warring parties.”
Zhdanov: “The Third Reich will have to reckon with the opinion of the people of Leningrad, whether it likes to or not. No political or legal tricks will work here. No acts of the Reichstag adopted unilaterally without coordination with Smolny will have power on the territory of Leningrad.”
Stalin: “We believe that the legal status of the Ostland Reichskomissariat, which our Führer enacted, is the recognition of our independence.”
Stalin: “We are ready to begin a constructive dialogue about disarmament with our partners in Berlin, but it must be based on the rejection of the politics of double standards and on full compliance with the norms of international law.”
Political officer Vasily Klochkov: “All these alcoholics who are trying to defend some sort of “ussr” (by the way, what is it?) must be eliminated like rabid dogs, because they are agents of the Gestapo.”
Zhukov: “Next week, the Joint Centre for Coordination and Control over the cessation of fire will discuss the creation of demilitarized zones in Leningrad, Novorossiysk and Krasnaya Polyana.”
Stalin: “We ask that our dear partners in Berlin treat us equally, like peers.”
Stalin: “The key interests of the USSR and the Third Reich match.”
Molotov: “The territory of the Ostland Reichskomissariat is a region for dialogue: interactions should be apolitical and conducted by experts—it is impermissible to hold cooperation with our valued partners in this area hostage to disagreements in other spheres of activity.”
Stalin: “We urge our valued partners in Berlin to exercise influence on the rogue battalions of the Russian Liberation Army that do not respect the ceasefire and shell our cities, killing peaceful civilians.”
Malinovskiy: “The meeting with our valued partners from the Contact Group tasked with settling the situation in the Ostland Reichskomissariat is taking place in a friendly atmosphere.”
Beria: “Since Govorov served in Kolchak’s army twenty years ago, it is clear that he is a secret enemy of the Soviet authorities and is preparing an anti-Soviet mutiny. This has been confirmed by our valued German partners.”
Stalin: “According to opinion polls, 98% of Soviet citizens desire for the Soviet Union to be integrated into the Great Germany as the Ostland Reichskomissariat.”
Political Expert of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party of the Bolsheviks: “Marshall Patton is an effective head of state. He did not surrender France. You simply understand nothing about geopolitics. Hitler has already lost to Patton and is trying to find a way to capitulate.”
Beria: “The special status of Leningrad as part of the Ostland Reichskomissariat is an acceptable resolution to the crisis that gave rise to its blockade, and we will use all the levers of influence available to us to ensure that Comrade Zhdanov fully implements these agreements.”
Head of the Sanitary-Epidemiological Service of the Leningrad region: “Since we do not have the ability to maintain effective control over the foodstuffs coming into the region, we have been forced to restrict the transit flow of food products along the Road of Life in order to maintain a favorable sanitary and epidemiological situation in the area.”
Marshall Dovator: “We express our deep concern about the fact that our German partners are ignoring direct negotiation contacts with the partisans of Smolensk.”
Molotov: “The Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic must remain as part of the Third Reich.”
Molotov: “Hitler is an acceptable partner for dialogue—he is a great Führer and we must give him our support.”
Kalinin: “If our fate is to be a part of the German Reich, then we are prepared to stand for elections to the Reichstag.”
Molotov: “We are not planning to liberate Kharkov or Odessa, because this must not be done ahead of time—not until these regions give birth to their own political elites capable of leading the liberation movement. We cannot impose liberation on the local citizens of the Reich if they do not want it.”
Beria: “Germany is not a fascist state.”
Beria: “Our principal enemies are the 99% of the so-called patriots, and our chief goal is to lead a struggle against them to ensure that they do not interfere with our valued partners in Berlin.”
Molotov: “In the interests of peace, the Soviet Union has always been prepared to become a part of the Great Germany as the Ostland Reichskomissariat.”
An interesting commentary with respect to the above parody:
In reality, we can say all we want that correct policies are being implemented, that there are some kind of wise calculations, that we need balance and flexibility, and so forth. Perhaps this is even true. We really do not know everything. But the trouble is that people are already starting to laugh at this state of affairs.
It is possible to call everyone “Putin-surrenderers,” but it would not have a practical effect—instead, it is likely to lead to the opposite result. The authorities cannot afford to look ridiculous, but people are already laughing at them. This is a real problem. Solving it is only possible with a real explanation of the strange appeasement of the Nazi Junta in Kiev, rather than pathetic fictions in the style of “we do not want to be drawn into a war.” When they want to draw us into a war, they will—this much is clear.
Fair enough, let’s say that the reasons for the passivity of the policies toward Ukraine and the pandering to the Nazis are so secret and the plan is so subtle and cunning that it cannot be disclosed. But then it is imperative to formulate some kind of convincing arguments for the “Putin-surrenderes.” Otherwise they will continue to multiply in numbers.
Because we will, in fact, inevitably be drawn into a war, and, moreover, when the enemy is ready to the max, the undermining of confidence in the Supreme Commander is exceedingly dangerous. In the place of the Kremlin propagandists, I would have given this serious thought and changed the broken record.
The most rational point is, as usual, at the very end. The propaganda in connection with Minsk-2 has become frankly ludicrous and ridiculous and, in fact, breeds depressive and defeatist sentiments in the context of an ongoing war. Propaganda does not work in the manner in which these “cunning plans” are being presented to the society. As correctly noted by the author of the commentary, the single worst development for any propaganda is when it becomes the subject of ridicule. Here the issue is not even the content of the nontransparent state policies, which, understandably, always contain a significant element of state or even military secrets, but in the methodology of the propaganda, which does not meet the basic requirements of camouflage for foreign policy and looks frankly hopeless and ludicrous.
When, for instance, day after day leaders make promises to march on Kiev, and then, the following day—proposals to become part of Ukraine, it is difficult to understand what other reaction the propagandists of the Minsk agreements could expect. This could have worked for a month or two, but when this line is being pushed endlessly, the inevitable outcome is a complete lack of understanding of what is happening and defeatist sentiments. This is very similar to the approach in the late Soviet period, when people were overfed with monotonous propaganda à-la “it will work out on its own.” Propaganda became detached from reality and turned ridiculous.