UPDATED (7/10): Solzhenitsyn On The West’s ‘Persisting Blindness Of Superiority’ (American Exceptionalism)

Left-Liberalism,Neoconservatism,Political Philosophy,Russia,The West

“But the persisting blindness of superiority continues to hold the belief that all the vast regions of our planet should develop and mature to the level of contemporary Western systems, the best in theory and the most attractive in practice; that all those other worlds are but temporarily prevented (by wicked leaders or by severe crises or by their own barbarity and incomprehension) from pursuing Western pluralistic democracy and adopting the Western way of life. Countries are judged on the merit of their progress in that direction. But in fact such a conception is a fruit of Western incomprehension of the essence of other worlds, a result of mistakenly measuring them all with a Western yardstick. The real picture of our planet’s development bears little resemblance to all this.”

In other words, American Exceptionalism. The West Doesn’t understand ‘other worlds.’

“A World Split Apart — Commencement Address Delivered At Harvard University, June 8, 1978.”

Disillusioned with the West, Solzhenitsyn returned to Russia, “leaving behind [what he perceived as a] dying civilization fatefully wedded to a democratic ideology.” In time, neocons and liberals rejected the great man, going on to adopt, instead, regime-changing, neocon, Russian dissidents.

… The West’s freedom, Solzhenitsyn declared … had degenerated into license, its media filled minds and souls with gossip and nonsense, its popular culture served only to coarsen and degrade, its people exhibited an unthinking sympathy for socialism and an inability to recognize evil.
… Overnight, those who had lionized Solzhenitsyn cast him into the outer darkness and adopted in his place the nuclear physicist and Western-oriented dissident Andrei Sakharov. A good and courageous man, Sakharov was a secularist and self-proclaimed socialist who had mastered the language—“democracy” and “human rights”—of Western liberalism. …
…Solzhenitsyn was [accused of being] a Russian nationalist and imperialist. In fact the great writer was a patriot who loved his country and expected others to love theirs; he explicitly repudiated nationalism and imperialism. More important, Mahoney recognizes that ‘a burning love for one’s motherland [is] compatible with humility before God and deference to a universal moral order.’

MORE. “Solzhenitsyn Wasn’t Western.”

UPDATE (7/10): FACEBOOK DEBATE IS HERE.