Saturday, January 10, 2009

What happened to the past in the past? [4]

This is a mini-series of blogs embedded in a greater series of blogs that concern the self-sacrificial religion known as arch-Christianity (as opposed to present-day neo-Christianity.

Beside the attempts at internal subversion of Russia via the Romanovs, the subversive activities of the West were insufficient to bring Russia under its control. The failed attacks of the Poles-Lithuanians (1608, 1617, etc.) and Swedes (1707) gave the tsars time to wage wars of their own, until Napoleon (1812) and Hitler (1941) renewed the West’s attempt to conquer Russia and/or gain unencumbered access to Russian resources.

Because Russia is an heir to the Eastern Empire and the European West was made up of breakaway princes from that Empire, the borders of Russia fluctuated wildly at times, especially with regard to Belarus and western Ukraine, which were annexed a number of times by Poland (the last time in 1920). The current attempts to have Belarus and Ukraine tilt toward the West thus have centuries of precedent. These are the early stages of Western attempts to encircle the territories of the former Great Eastern Empire.

The above is not the end of the list of wars between the contenders. There is the French, British, and Ottoman led Crimean War (1853) and the conflict that led to it—the dispute over who is in charge of the Holy places in Palestine. This conflict can trace its origins to 1829, when the Russian tsar decided to best the Latin Church by establishing Jerusalem—Yaroslav in old Russian—in Palestine, a territory heretofore claimed by France and/or the Ottomans. Thousands of Russian pilgrims traveled to Jerusalem-Yaroslav and by the actions of their feet established the geographical location of the town. [When Napoleon invaded Egypt (1799), his map did not yet show Jerusalem to be in Palestine.]

In 1843 the Russian Orthodox patriarch of Jerusalem takes the next step. He obtains from the Ottomans permission to separate his authority from that of the patriarch of Istanbul—formerly Constantinople-Jerusalem—and thereby establishes in Palestine a town named Jerusalem. After the Russian pogroms of 1881, two million Jews migrate to the United States, while many thousands settle in Jerusalem, Palestine. Thus, while the neo-Christian Russian Orthodox Church founds Jerusalem, the Jews give its location a sense of irreversibility.

However great the interest of Israel in the land that it has taken from indigenous Palestinians—even to the point of wishing the Palestinians gone (those living in the concentration camp of Gaza especially)—this is one wish its politicians cannot allow realization if they are not suicidal. Even when Israel has the backing of millions of fellow Jews in the United States and is able to tie politically the hands of an U.S. administration, it cannot be certain the U.S. will back it when Russia intervenes.

In what way will Russia intervene, we do not know. We may think of the ways, but only whoever has a direct interest in the outcome knows what he will do to prevent a “call” of a hand he is not sure is a winner. The world does not wish to see the resolution become one often chosen in the barrooms of a Western movie.

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