What do #Brexit, Ukraine, and #Black Lives Matter have in common?

Surprisingly, the answer is that they all meet goals outlined in Foundations of Geopolitics, a 1997 manifesto written by a political scientist who went on to work for Russian Parliament and a Russian General from the General Staff Academy. Aleksandr Dugin's neo-fascist text is over 600 pages long and describes an ultimate goal of destroying “Atlanticism”, the combined influence of the US and Britain. He is quoted as saying “The American Empire should be destroyed.”

Neo-fascist manifesto

In the neo-fascist manifesto, Dugin expresses a wish to see Russia control everything “from Dublin to Vladivostok".

Dugin goes on to outline foreign policy and geopolitical goals for different countries around the world, many of which have been met with disturbing accuracy in recent years. All the more disturbing is that Dugin did not act alone in the creation and spread of his ideas. He wrote the book with the help of a military consultant, General Nikolai Klokotov, who taught at the General Staff Academy for years after the book was published. Dugin is pictured below with Turkish PM Binali Yildirim and parliament.

Dugin himself has strong ties to the Russian military and secret service, cultivating strong political allies throughout his career.

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A year after the book's release, he was hired as a geopolitcal adviser to the speaker of the Russian State Duma (house of Parliament), Chairman Gennady Seleznyov. Voted the tenth most influential man in Russia in 2001, Seleznyov said in a 2001 radio interview that Dugin's book should be made a “compulsory part of the school curriculum” all over Russia. It is clear from item one on Dugin's agenda that Russian parliament's advocacy of his work is not simply academic.

The goals

Ukraine

Dugin describes Ukraine as “a state with no geopolitical meaning”, and highlights the dangers of allowing it to remain independent of Russia - "Ukraine as an independent state with certain territorial ambitions," he warns, "represents an enormous danger for all of Eurasia and, without resolving the Ukrainian problem, it is in general senseless to speak about continental politics". Russia has of course since invaded Ukraine, despite America's efforts to prevent this.

Brexit

Britain is viewed as an extension of the US (an "extraterritorial base") and should be cut off from Europe and isolated in order to weaken its position on the world stage.

France and Germany, on the other hand, should be allowed to thrive due to their "anti-Atlantic" values. Germany is to be given "de facto leadership" of Europe.

Destroy the American Empire

One of the most detailed plans is the one concerning America. The United States is to be made the “primary scapegoat” on the global stage. Russian agents and media should use every opportunity to paint the US as the villain in world affairs, altering public perceptions. Specific strategies include actively supporting all dissident movements to create social and racial conflicts” while promoting “isolationist tendencies in American politics”. Too vague? The book specifies that dissent should be focused in the use and agitation of “Afro-American” political agitators and racial activists. In Iran and across the world, Muslim extremists should be stirred into action against the US through propaganda, funding, and other forms of aid. A strong point made in the book is that Russia should completely avoid military force, and operate through subterfuge and disinformation alone. Instability in the US, isolationist policies in their government, black rights activism, Brexit, Ukraine... Feeling a bit overwhelmed? It's a lot to take in. This is a military textbook outlining Russian aims and goals 20 years ago, and it reads like recent news headlines.

Amid FBI investigations into Russian election tampering in the US and direct evidence that their agents have been purchasing Black Lives Matter ads and posing as “Blacktivists” online, the question must be asked; are Russia simply fortunate that the goals in an old manifesto are being met, one by one? Or is the “subterfuge” described in the book more widespread and insidious than previously imagined? What headlines might we see in the coming months and years about Russian involvement in the Brexit campaign? While it certainly paints a foreboding picture of Russia's reach and influence, it's difficult to say which events might be merely coincidence. One thing is certain: Whether by luck or covert action throughout the years, for political scientist Aleksandr Dugin and his military advisers, everything seems to be going according to the plan. #Russia investigation