Grigori Rasputin died a violent death exactly 100 years ago today, on 30 December 1916. The Russian press has noted this anniversary with several interesting articles, including a couple of pro-Rasputin pieces. You don’t often see that: Most people are repulsed by the image of this skeezy peasant with hypnotic eyeballs, who appears in Russian history like a nightmare apparition after reading too much Tolstoy while swilling toxic samogon by the fireplace.
But in the interests of being fair and balanced…
I picked two pieces to scan: This one from Komsomolka, which highlights that Rasputin’s assassination was the work of British secret services; and this more ideological op-ed by Petr Akopov . Akopov defends Rasputin. He argues that Rasputin was a good guy, just misunderstood and slandered by political enemies from the then-equivalent of the “Bolotnaya” swamp. This rural priest symbolized the connection between the Tsar and his people. His assassination led to all the bad things which ensued, including the end of the monarchy, a bloody civil war and the triumph of the “cosmpolitans”.
I’ll start with Akopov: The headline of his piece translates as:
They Shot At Rasputin … And Killed Russia
Akopov begins with a dire warning: The assassination of Rasputin signified the start of the “Time of Troubles” which took away the lives of millions of Russian people. It is important to remember the lessons of this time, so that it doesn’t happen again.
Rasputin was murdered in Petrograd on the night of December 16-17, but that was by the old calendar; it translates to our December 30, which is why we celebrate this anniversary today, in case anyone is still confused about that. It’s for the same reason that we celebrate the October Revolution in November. Everybody following so far? If not, just google “Julian” vs “Gregorian” dates.
Anyhow, the important point is that Rasputin was murdered by Tsar Nikolai’s own relatives. Noblemen close to the court, who resented the fact that Nikolai listened to this 47-year-old smelly peasant more than he listened to them.
For years these aristos had gone around spreading lies about Rasputin: That he was a con-man, a thief, a degenerate. When Russia entered World War I against Germany, these same slanderers started spreading the rumor that Rasputin was a German spy. In their fevered imagination, they believed that Rasputin was counseling the Tsar on every appointment made to his cabinet, and on all issues of war and peace. They believed that, in order to save the monarchy itself, they had to remove this odious “grey cardinal”.
In time a group of courtiers were able to coalesce and form an actual murderous conspiracy. This was quite an achievement for Russian aristocrats. Their goal was nothing less than “The Salvation of Holy Russia”. The conspiracy included such people as the Grand Duke Dmitry Pavlovich, Prince Felix Yusupov, and Duma Deputy Vladimir Purishkevich. All fervent monarchists and patriots. Another participant, maybe not so patriotic: The English secret service officer Oswald Rayner. Well, patriotic to England, not so much to Russia. According to newer sources, Rayner himself, who was sort of a WWI-era James Bond, may have possessed a license to kill; and may have been the man who, using his Webley revolver, fired the actual fatal shot into Grigori Rasputin!
And this is the part that ticks off modern Russian patriots such as Akopov: That the elite of that time, including a Duma Deputy, engulfed as they were in Masonism, sodomy; infiltrated by foreign secret services and blinded by liberal propaganda — could have been led by the nose to commit such a patricidal act against their own Fatherland!
To their notion that Rasputin had addled the Tsar’s brain, Akopov rejoinders that Rasputin never involved himself in internal politics. He most certainly did not appoint ministers, nor did he make military or diplomatic decisions. Rasputin’s only crime was being so close to the Empress. Various hangers-on and members of his entourage used his access to the court, in their own mercantile interests. Rasputin himself was neither an intriguer, nor a manipulator, nor did he have any aspirations to gain political influence or power.
Nor was Rasputin a German spy. His life or death had no effect on the eventual outcome: A separate peace between Russia and Germany was the only way out that anybody could see, and was pretty much destined to happen.
It was the English who attempted to avert this inevitable outcome, using their Anglophile agents of influence within the Romanov court. These elements had never liked nor trusted the German Empress Alexandra Fedorovna (aka “Alix of Hesse’), and they spread rumors about her being a German spy. The elite believed these slanders; and believed that they were “saving Russia” and “saving the monarchy” by destroying Rasputin and depriving Alexandra of her personal advisor, family counselor and life coach.
Akopov calls these people “useful idiots” and goes on to describe how their misguided actions led to everything bad that followed: the end of the Romanov dynasty, the end of the monarchy per se in Russia; a bloody civil war; a separate peace with Germany; and the triumph of the “cosmopolitan” pro-German Bolsheviks.
Akopov defends Rasputin as a symbol of the Tsar’s closeness to his own people. It’s the old game: The King is surrounded by an elite who despise the people and attempt to keep the King apart from them. They don’t want the King to learn how they (the elite) are oppressing the people. But the King himself is good. He wishes to break out of his gilded cage and get out there into the world. He wants to “get to know” his people better and find out whether or not they are being repressed by the evil viziers. In the scruffy peasant and “man of the people” Rasputin, Tsar Nicholas found an avatar to represent the Russian people themselves; and a way to get closer to them; to listen to them; and to be responsive to their needs. Well, it goes without saying that the elite will simply not tolerate that!
More: Rasputin, a rural priest, symbolized the Russian people in their devotion to the Orthodox faith. A faith which was noticeably lacking in the pro-Western sodomistic Anglophile camarilla surrounding the court like a degenerate three-ring circus. Akopov accuses that part of the elite of abandoning Orthodoxy when they raised their hand against “God’s own person”, Grigori Rasputin.
And Akopov ends by drawing a parallel between these misguided “patriot-monarchists” and today’s liberal elite which is, knowingly or unknowingly, the pawn of foreign interests. Just as the “useful idiot” Purishkevich, in his time, was the unknowing pawn of the British secret services.
[to be continued]