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Foreign policy motes in others' eyes

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Message Zintis Znotiņš
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Why do I think badly of Putin's Russia and Putin himself? The reasons are numerous, but two-facedness and lies would be the first ones I'd mention. It's understandable that every country has its own interests, but"

Putin's Russia reminds me of my schooldays. With this I mean the bully who thinks he is the center of the world and that everyone should obey him and speak his language. And the language he spoke was force - he respected only those who were able to beat him up. And for the rest - the polite children - he had absolutely no respect.

This was just an example, but we will indeed be talking about language. I know that the topic of language has always been quite delicate. Let's talk about words and deeds, but in the context of language. No insults, only facts.

Russia expects the OSCE to objectively and professionally review the issue of discrimination against the Russian language in the Baltic states and Ukraine, as was expressed by Russian permanent representative to the OSCE Aleksandr Lukashevich to the Russian media outlet RIA Novosti.

Protection against the discrimination of the Russian language and Russian-speakers in the Baltics and Ukraine is Russia's favorite topic in the OSCE. According Lukashevich, the organization has not been paying enough attention to this issue.(1)

Interesting. It's common knowledge that discrimination can only be possible when both sides are on the same level. And if we look from the perspective of language, the languages of the Baltic states and Ukraine are not on the same level as Russian since the latter is not an official language in any of these countries.

Moreover, generalized statements that do not provide details of facts are quite meaningless. One of the main instruments of propaganda is to mention generalized statements that cannot be fact checked. And we know that all Russia does is make generalized statements.

There is also one interesting nuance - if Russia believes that the OSCE hasn't been paying enough attention to this issue, what makes it believe that the OSCE will do so now? Perhaps Russia's statements have something to do with 4 December 2020 when Kairat Abdrakhmanov (Kazakhstan) became OSCE's High Commissioner on National Minorities. Is there a reason to believe that he would be more willing to help Russia with this issue?

Yes, there is - Russia and Kazakhstan are like a hand and a glove. Kairat Abdrakhmanov is also a "product of Soviet times". We acquire our worldviews and establish our values in the last years of school and in university. Naturally, a person can change but principles that have taken root during these times usually remain.

Abdrakhmanov is a historian, and it should be noted that during Soviet times there was only one correct history. Moreover, from 1987 to 1991 he worked as a lecturer at the political history department of the V.I. Lenin Kazakhstan Polytechnic Institute. From 1991 to 1993, he was an postgraduate student at the Kazakhstan State University. (2) Are there any slightest doubts about Abdrakhmanov's ideology?

I will add that the OSCE consistently acts in the interests of Russia. Considering the recent accusation against the president of the International Biathlon Union, (3) we should view every decision made by any international organization in favor of Russia as being very suspicious.

Let's see what Russia itself has to say about the use of language.

Putin has said that in Russia every person must know the Russian language.(4) However, Putin's rhetoric doesn't end at the borders of Russia, as the Russian president has outlined a course of action to fight for the use of Russian in the rest of the world as well.(5) I want to stress the word "world" - Putin wants to clearly state that he will attempt to force the use of the Russian language on other countries and that there is a state-level plan for achieving this goal. Putin is simply confirming that he intends to meddle in the affairs of sovereign states.

What concerns the amendments to Russia's law on state language, it was argued that currently not all foreigners and non-citizens working in Russia know the Russian language, i.e. the official language of the territory they have decided to be employed in. So, at work these people communicate in their native language, and Russians take offense at this.(6)

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On a daily basis I am working as freelance independent investigative journalist. I am happy to be the Latvian patriot, born in Riga. I Have studied politics and journalism at the Latvian University. Currently, on a voluntary basis, I am helping (more...)
 

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