A liberal makeover for Minsk

Alexander Lukashenko , President of Belarus
Kremlin.ru, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

It is often said by “our guys” that the Eastern Europeans are resistant to many of the problems Western Europe and other US vassal states currently experience because of their history of communism, the suggestion being that while the West is in the throes of a communist revolution, the East having seen it all before do not wish to revisit their past.

There is a competing view, one that I am sympathetic to, that this situation is in fact the result of the Soviet Union having shielded Eastern Europe from the encroachment of American liberalism which the USA had quickly moved to impose on both the conquered and allies alike in the immediate aftermath of WWII and today we see taking its final form. Countries which fell under the US sphere of influence after the fall of the Soviet Union may be late to the liberal party and outwardly appear very based but rest assured no effort is being spared in getting them up to speed with the program which will inevitably succeed given time. Political insiders in these countries will already be quietly resigned to their fate if not in on it.

An interesting case study in this regard is the state of Belarus, a former constituent republic of the USSR sandwiched between the EU on one side and Russia on the other which to this day remains an immovable, post-Soviet rock withstanding the crashing, corrosive waves of modern liberalism. I am not suggesting Belarus is communist or even socialist (free market enthusiasts will no doubt beg to differ here), what I do think is that Belarus remains outside the neo-liberal club which most other ex-Eastern Bloc states joined so eagerly following the fall of the Iron Curtain. A backwards throwback to the Soviet Union, mired in poverty, a pariah state, a socially conservative shithole (in a good way).

Alexander Lukashenko, the disputed (I understand from following the Western media this is the customary way to refer to him) President of Belarus, famously turned down $940 million in “rapid financing” from the IMF as it was contingent on implementing lockdown measures. He is referred to by the liberal media as a dictator and likewise they cannot seem to mention the country’s elections without adding that the results are “contested by some” (the 2020 US election was also “contested by some” but predictably they don’t feel the need to mention it every time that election is discussed). Economic sanctions are imposed on Belarus by all the usual suspects for alleged human rights abuses as well as funding of opposition parties. Reading Lukashenko’s Wikipedia page I see he is anti-semitic, homophobic and misogynistic, almost a full house. The country has experienced the beginning of something resembling a colour revolution with thousands taking to the streets of the capital, Minsk in protest against the Lukashenko regime. While I am sure this is all very spontaneous and organic the fact women are placed front and centre in what is still largely a patriarchal society and all the liberal slogans and tactics we are so used to seeing at home are on display I can’t help but be suspicious the free West is involved. That said I am well known for my cynicism.

Is Lukashenko a dictator? Possibly, but then maybe a strongman is required in order to keep the wolves from the door, so I would not necessarily hold this against him.

Having briefly covered the current lay of the land I would like to perform a thought experiment and imagine where Belarus goes from here.

The West or their proxies continue to ramp up the pressure on Lukashenko. They are playing the long game and know the impressionable youth are the future so focus their propaganda efforts here. Don’t the young Belarusians want good jobs, ease of travel, freedom from stuffy social constraints to choose one of innumerable available genders, free (as long as it does not offend liberal sensibilities) speech, abortion on demand? Do they not want to live in an open society? All that good stuff. And of course the young women will have learned to admire the lifestyle of Western women who are so libertine, so the feminist message will be pushed incessantly. They would continue to delegitimise Lukashenko, perhaps he will be implicated in an offshore tax scandal like the Panama papers. They will continue to support the opposition in any way they can and the public will become increasingly weary of the economic sanctions.

Lukashenko’s days are numbered and by hook or by crook eventually he has to go (barring an intervention from Russia), replaced by a pro-Western liberal of the left or right, it doesn’t make much of a difference which.

The first thing to be done, as any good liberal knows, is to open up the Belarusian economy. Strategic industries which remain under state ownership are auctioned off to the highest bidder. Foreign investment is encouraged and before long young Belarusians who up until recently worked  fitting tires in the Soviet-era truck factory or digging in muck at the potato farm suddenly have cushy jobs as store manager at Uniglo or senior spreadsheet operator at J.P. Morgan’s regional head office. Nice new flat, latest iPhone, holidays on the Black Sea. Times are good.

It goes without saying no corporate regional head office is complete without a gay pride flag defiantly displayed out front (BLM flag may be jumping the gun at this point but we’ll get there). The corporates will compete to become official sponsor of Minsk’s reinvigorated gay pride parade, and if the demand for homosexuals outstrips supply the education system is already under review with necessary improvements to be implemented.

Abortion any time and under any circumstances, enough said. Perhaps they will conduct a fake referendum such as the one that took place in Ireland in 2018 in order to provide an veneer of legitimacy and have the media interview young women who explain how oppressive it is for them  not to be allowed to kill their own unborn babies.

What else does every modern liberal democracy worth its salt absolutely need? If you answered racial grievance politics you have been paying attention, well done. Looking at the example set by the West a nation can hardly claim to be modern, liberal or democratic without competing ethnic minority factions vying for resources and influence at the expense of the indigenous population. This poses a challenge with regards to Belarus being so stubbornly ethnically homogenous and hideously white which is an obstacle to progress but will inevitably be overcome via liberal immigration laws. Hate speech laws will be required in order to silence dissent against this transformation (which must take place…) as we are all well aware objecting to your descendants becoming a minority in their ancestral homeland or even the suggestion white people have group interests is illiberal, white supremacist hate speech and diversity is our strength.

Advertising will only portray white people in the following scenarios a) a gay white man b) a white women with a BAME partner. There will need to be an attempt to rewrite Belarusian history so as to portray Belarusian’s as aggressors and/or colonisers (challenging, will need to get creative).   Eventually Belarus joins the EU and adopts the Euro.

Probably a lot of other things I will only think of once I have emailed this to Swiss Bob.

Pavel Bordzilovskiy walks home towards his cosy apartment in a trendy part of Minsk while simultaneously watching the latest Joe Rogan video on his new iPhone. His cushy job as senior spreadsheet operator at J.P. Morgan’s regional head office really had been a game changer, far better paid than muck shoveller at the potato farm. After a long day at the office completing diversity and inclusion training his Madagascan manager had taken him to that new Japanese-Somali fusion restaurant around the corner. He was starting to get used to sushi (and whatever that other stuff was), it has been months since he had a good old bowl of zhurek, could you even find it in Minsk any more? He looked up and surveyed the scene before him. An incredible range of restaurants serving food from across the world staffed by people speaking a multitude of unintelligible languages, a pride sticker on every door and racially mixed couples on every advert in every shop window. He sees a poster informing passers by that a BLM protest is due to take place over the police shooting of an African American thousands of miles away who didn’t do nothing.

He feels completely severed from his past, the country of his childhood and his parents was gone, but he is eating sushi, he has a nice new iPhone, is going on holiday to the Black Sea next month and lives in a modern, liberal democracy.

Come for the trade deals and economic prosperity, stay for the globohomo-clownworld, it is a package deal.

© Zombie_Ramboz 2022