Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told the U.N. General Assembly on Saturday that “a new world order is being born right before our eyes.”
Of course, he did not define this new order by Russia’s brutal war of conquest against Ukraine. Instead, he said it was shaped by a struggle between “the world majority, which advocates a more equitable distribution of global goods and civilizational diversity,” and “the few who use neo-colonial methods of subjugation to maintain their elusive dominance.”
Throughout the presentation, Lavrov complained about the unequal distribution of resources without saying a word about Russia causing worldwide starvation by blocking Ukrainian grain shipments, or Russia’s aggressive use of gas and oil as economic weapons.
Lavrov wallowed in bizarre historical grievances, essentially chastising the world for not appreciating Russia’s contributions to defeating Nazi Germany in World War II, as if proper gratitude would include a free pass for Russia invading another country in 2022. He even blamed the United States for causing the Cuban missile crisis in 1962, as if President John F. Kennedy had used some sort of mind-control ray to force the Russians to put nuclear weapons there.
“At the end of the Cold War, the Soviet Union played a decisive role in the unification of Germany and agreement on the parameters of a new security architecture in Europe,” Lavrov intoned.
Lavrov asserted t hat NATO effectively forced Moscow to invade Ukraine, almost against its will, by “bringing NATO closer to the borders of Russia.”
“In 2021, our proposals to conclude agreements on mutual security guarantees in Europe without changing the non-block status of Ukraine were arrogantly rejected,” he huffed. “The West continued to systematically militarize the Russophobic Kyiv regime, which was brought to power as a result of a bloody coup d’etat and was used to prepare for unleashing a hybrid war against our country.”
Lavrov did not dwell on the fact that Russia’s behavior since the invasion began has vindicated most of the West’s security concerns about the militaristic regime of President Vladimir Putin. In his eyes, Russia’s every action was a reaction to some American or European offense. For example, he howled about NATO “testing scenarios for the use of nuclear weapons on the territory of the Russian Federation,” without mentioning that Putin’s regime sparked a worldwide panic by asserting its right to use tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine.
Lavrov did a little propaganda work for Russia’s boss in the new Axis of Tyranny, China, by repeating Chinese complaints about NATO “expanding” into the Pacific through security alliances between the U.S., Japan, and South Korea.
“The undisguised focus of such efforts against Russia and China, towards the collapse of the inclusive regional architecture that has developed around ASEAN, creates the risk of a new explosive hotbed of geopolitical tension, in addition to the already overheated European one,” he said.
Lavrov boasted of the China-Russia axis becoming unstoppable through BRICS, the expanding economic alliance that China dominates. At the same time, he castigated Western powers for treating the growth of Chinese and Russian influence as a serious threat.
“NATO’s advancement in the Asia-Pacific region is a good thing, but the expansion of BRICS is dangerous,” he sneered, mocking Western concerns about what he hailed as an “inexorable” historical process. Once again, he conjured the phantom of a “world majority” that the tyrannical governments in Beijing and Moscow somehow speak for.
“The main trend has been the desire of the world majority states to strengthen sovereignty and defend national interest, traditions, culture, and way of life. They no longer want to live under someone else’s dictation. They want to be friends and trade with each other, but also with the whole world, only on equal terms and for mutual benefit,” he said.
There was a hint of the real danger facing Western strategists in this passage because sizable portions of the developing world are very uncomfortable with cultural shifts the U.S. and Europe are trying to impose on them, especially in the realm of gay and transsexual politics. President Ebrahim Raisi of Iran, the third charter member of the Axis of Tyranny, referred to this dynamic in his own speech to the U.N. General Assembly.
Lavrov tipped his hat to Iran by complaining that Europe has been overrun by “Islamophobia,” as manifested by “acts of burning the Quran.” He also blasted the Europeans for “insults to the Torah” and “persecution of Orthodox clergy,” supporting Putin’s contention that Russia is the last bastion of traditional values against the secular West.
Nations that do not want to “live under someone else’s dictation” should be careful about climbing into bed with dictatorships, but Lavrov claimed that only Russia and China could create a “truly multipolar, fair world order,” if only the “Western collective” would stop “artificially dividing humanity into hostile blocks and preventing the achievement of common goals.”
Lavrov read from China’s playbook about the evils of human rights sanctions, denouncing them as “illegal” and immoral, because they “primarily hit the most vulnerable segments of the population.” He demanded the immediate end of U.S. sanctions against Cuba, Venezuela, Syria, and other monstrous human rights violators who are politically aligned with Moscow and called for the prompt establishment of a Palestinian state.
“We welcome the return of the Syrian Arab Republic to the Arab family, as well as the beginning of the normalization process between Damascus and Ankara, which we are trying to help together with our Iranian colleagues,” he said.
Lavrov blamed the U.S. for the hideous state of Libya, which “for ten years has not been able to recover from the consequences of NATO aggression, which destroyed the Libyan state and opened the floodgates to the spread of terrorism in the Sahara-Sahel region, and to waves of millions of illegal migrants to Europe and other parts of the world.”
“Note: as soon as Moammar Qaddafi abandoned his military nuclear program, he was destroyed,” he smirked.
Lavrov went on to blame the West for tensions on the Korean peninsula, the brutal junta factional war in Sudan, the coups in Niger and other African nations – which he said the West encouraged by ratifying the “bloody coup in Ukraine in 2014” – rising tensions in Serbia, and even Azerbaijan’s impending ethnic cleansing of Nagorno-Karabakh, which is being conducted right under the noses of useless Russian “peacekeepers.”
It was all America’s fault according to Lavrov, and so is climate change, which he claimed has somehow been shortchanged because the U.S. and EU are funding the “racist regime in Kyiv.”
“A vivid illustration of the ‘rules’ by which the West wants us all to live is the fate of its commitments that were made in 2009 to provide developing countries with $100 billion annually to finance climate change mitigation programs,” Lavrov argued. “If you compare what happened to these unkept promises with the amounts that the US, NATO and the EU have spent on supporting the racist regime in Kyiv – an estimated $170 billion over the past year and a half – you will come to realize what the ‘enlightened Western democracies’ with their notorious ‘values’ really think.”
He apparently does not understand how trillion-dollar deficit spending works. The notion that the American political class must defund one of its priorities, in order to pour billions into another, is almost lovably quaint.
Lavrov demanded U.N. “reforms” that would favor Russia and its client states, such as more Security Council seats for its BRICS allies to give “the process of globalization a fair, equitable character.” He dismissed multilateral alliances like the G7 and G20 as hopelessly “politicized” by Western powers.
The Russian foreign minister concluded by restating the heart of his argument, which was that Western powers should show deference to Moscow in gratitude for its role in the Second World War, which gave birth to the United Nations.
“As a representative of a country that made a decisive contribution to the defeat of fascism and Japanese militarism, I would like to draw attention to such a blatant phenomenon as the rehabilitation of Nazis and collaborators in a number of European countries, primarily in Ukraine and the Baltic states,” he said.
“It is especially alarming that last year Germany, Italy, and Japan voted against the U.N. General Assembly resolution on the inadmissibility of glorifying Nazism for the first time,” he continued. “This unfortunate fact calls into question the sincerity of the repentance of these states for mass crimes against humanity during the Second World War, and contradicts the conditions under which they were admitted to the U.N. as full members.”
The Axis of Tyranny offers a vision of global governance without human rights concerns, in which regimes can do whatever it takes to retain power and meet their industrial goals. It would be wise for Western leaders to stop handing spokesmen like Lavrov the ammunition they need to support their narrative of a new post-Western world order.
The day before Lavrov addressed the General Assembly, Canada decided to salute an actual Nazi military veteran as a “Ukrainian hero” because the Ukrainians did not bother to tell Ottawa about his history, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government did not think to ask.