Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Back in the USSA (William Grigg)

William Grigg weighs in on the Georgia/Russia conflict, and includes an interesting introduction on possibly the greatest wrestler of all time, the great Alexander Karelin. An excerpt:

After winning his first gold medal in Seoul in 1988, Karelin acquired the cultural clout to defy the Soviet Communist Party, at a time when such defiance was still a very risky proposition. Shortly thereafter he asked his mother to renounce her Party membership, which she did.

Karelin's study of Solzhenitsyn's work had taught him, quite properly, to loathe Communism, but it left him hurting and puzzled: "[A] lot inside me was ruined by trusting in the society where I live. After reading this, I had nothing left. I wondered, Are there no white spots in our history, only black? My whole country is in perpetual funeral."

Patriots of many countries, our own emphatically included, can empathize with Karelin. It is natural to love one's country. It is just as natural for informed people to despise the government that rules them. Many Russian patriots who became politically aware shortly before the end of the Soviet Union were put into an exceptionally painful position: As much as they loved their country, they couldn't feel proud of it.

That's the predicament confronting well-informed, principled patriots living in the proto-Soviet USA.

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