The dismemberment of Ukraine is practically complete. President Vladimir Putin has created his "New Russia" almost without firing a shot. What's more, Putin has won a fundamentally new type of war, one tailored to the new conditions in the international arena. This new type of warfare has several key features.
Controlling the images that the media projects is important because casting yourself as the victim is far more important than achieving a military victory. To come out the winner in this scenario, you don't have to shoot your enemy. All you have to do is either kill your own men — or provoke others into killing them — and then portray it as an act of aggression by the enemy with all of the attendant media spin.
In this type of warfare, the aggressor attributes his own actions to the actual victim. Thus, in the eyes of the propaganda-deluged population, the victim becomes the aggressor, and the aggressor is presented as a "freedom fighter."
In Palestine in 1936, the mullahs instigated pogroms against the Jewish population, calling on their followers to kill the Jews to avenge an imaginary Jewish slaughter of Muslims. In 2014, Moscow reportedly sent armed saboteurs into Donetsk and other Ukrainian cities to stir up the local population while blaming the West of interfering in the country's internal affairs.
The main objective in this new warfare is not so much to neutralize or vanquish the enemy as it is to fully persuade, control and manipulate the population you purport to "liberate." Through a relentless propaganda campaign, the people are turned into zombies, easily provoked into forming panic-stricken mobs capable of carrying out pogroms and ethnic cleansing. Sometimes they even sacrificing themselves as "living shields" before the guns of the enemy. Those refusing to get caught up in the general hysteria are cast out, beaten or murdered by the crowd.
As an example, thousands of people died in Palestine's anti-Jewish pogroms in 1936. But only several hundred Jews were killed. All the rest were Palestinians who had either sympathized with the Jews or refused to kill them.
Exactly the same thing is happening in southern and eastern Ukraine, where citizens opposed to the "liberation" from the mythical "fascists" fall victim to very real kidnappers. Among those who have disappeared are City Council member Vladimir Rybak from the Donetsk region, freelance journalist Sergei Lefter and the son of activist Artur Stulikov.
In George Orwell's epic novel "1984," the propaganda of "doublethink" is imposed from above, but in this new type of warfare, every member of society perpetuates the government's lies. Even the people who have retained their ability to think independently eventually succumb to the pressure of the aggressive fanatics and end up merging with the mindless mob.
It is not difficult to see that Palestinian terrorists and Putin exploit the most vulnerable aspects of Western ideology. First, that is the belief in the sovereign will of the majority. According to modern Western theory, it is the people — not the elite, the bourgeoisie or the authorities — who are sovereign. Never mind that 90 percent of the Egyptian people approved of the 9/11 terrorist attack on the twin towers in New York.
Second, Western nations condemn any use of force by the state but overlook all violence committed by activists, social organizations and the people. That only gives carte blanche to those want to commit evil deeds.
Yulia Latynina hosts a political talk show on Ekho Moskvy radio.