It has been said by some friends that I am “a little pro-Russian and somewhat anti-West”.
I have seen the policies of both and have developed a bias. I am not an idol-worshipper of any kind and although I consider Putin to be the best President Russia has had since the collapse of the Soviet Union, I don’t lose sight of the fact that he is nothing more than a public servant, just like all of our “leaders”, placed in that position to do their best for the “Demos” (the people). I would say that judging by Putin’s popularity in his own country, the Russian people are generally satisfied with the job he’s done so far.
Now, getting back to the antipathy I feel toward Western governments and their policies. That is based on years of first hand experience and of witnessing the underhanded ways they have treated countries and peoples (so many countries and so many peoples) all over the world that just happened to be too weak to defend themselves, either militarily, politically or economically.
Even during the Soviet Era and since I did not live in a country that was either a part of the USSR or the Warsaw Pact, I can only speak of the benefits that we saw from the Soviet Union. At a time when my own little country was a colony of Britain and we had no roads to speak of, very few hospitals and schools and no university on the island, at a time when secondary education was a privilege only for the wealthy and University education was but a dream for most, the Soviet Union provided free education for all the countries that “suffered its oppression”. Those few fellow countrymen of mine who actually got a higher education in those days, were either the children of the few very wealthy who could afford to study overseas, or they were children of poor families that were offered free scholarships in former Soviet countries, courtesy of the Kremlin. As for medical care, the same thing applied; unlike former Soviet bloc countries that enjoyed free Universal Medical Care, in British ruled Cyprus, if you could afford a doctor, all well and good, otherwise you made do with whatever traditional remedies you concocted at home and prayed.
Neither the USSR nor Russia since, have ever threatened us. They have not even set conditions for the assistance they often afforded us. They never tried to interfere in our domestic issues, unlike our “friends and allies” in the west who cannot resist meddling.
So, how can a man help but be biased having experienced and knowing all that I know? I feel I can trust Russia; I know I would be a fool to trust the West based on its track record.
All I can say to those friends, who made the opening observation, is that it was a gross understatement.