Image courtesy of AZ Quotes
“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting” -- Sun Tzu.
Wikipedia defines subversion as “a process by which the values and principles of a system in place are contradicted or reversed, in an attempt to transform the established social order and its structures of power, authority, hierarchy, and social norms… an attack on the public morale.” In the world of realpolitik and proxy wars, subversion moves with the sole agenda of “destroying” an enemy territory/ people/ government completely, and most of it stays remarkably casual, observable and on your face to the keen mind all along. People fail to notice it because years of perfecting the art has empowered its features to hover above the IQ level of the average human. The average human for example, has been made to believe that espionage – like in Hollywood movies – is the key, and that is an act carried out chiefly during a hot or a cold war. The fact however is that Hollywood has established a billion-dollar industry drilling an idea that is only about 15% (with respect to money, manpower, and time) of the whole game, while keeping a tight lid on the rest of it.
Who, or which nation could be a candidate of subversion? The short answer: Any. Used to be a time when there were closed societies. Japan was one. Soviet Union was another. They had closed borders. Censored media. Controlled population. They used to be subjects for subversion that DID NOT WANT to be subverted. They remained so – successfully, might I add – till a few years ago. But, with the advent of the global liberal order now, such societies – with the exception of North Korea (and Iran to a small extent) – are a thing of the past. Now every subverter walks on a gold mine filled with responsive targets all over the world.
“Don’t fight at all, but subvert anything of value in the country of your enemy… until such time, that the perception of reality of your enemy is screwed up to such an extent that he does not perceive you as enemy. And that your system, your civilization, and your ambitions, look to your enemy as an alternative – if not desirable, then at least feasible. This is basically what subversion is!”, said Yuri Bezmenov in his now-famous lecture. Something that used to be taught to all enlisted men and women in the Soviet Union, and now, with the advent of cultural Marxism, is being released in slow measures among the identified ‘oppressed-victimized class’. [Workers don’t feature anymore; their upward mobility not only rendered their tag useless to ‘class struggle’ but became one core reason why mainstream Marxism failed.] This ‘oppressed-victimized class’ comprises of different elements/groups of different shades and identities across different countries, with more and more ‘victims’ adding themselves to this network every season.
Subversion consists of four phases. Each one has a pre-fixed time allotment. The first one, is Demoralization. Personally, that sounds the most interesting. Because we completely miss that phase. For a couple of reasons. 1. It takes about 20 years, or two decades to get a complete grip on a society. It is so relaxed in its pace that it is never quite noticeable. 2. It is done through educating one generation of students, by shaping their outlook, ideology, and personality. That is a generation of youngsters who grow up embracing a set of values that is different from their parents; and never caught in the radar because of the term ‘generation gap’ – a universal acceptance of the fact that since times change, the off-spring would always be different from the parent.
The areas targeted are three, and they are those intangibles where public opinion is created, nurtured, and shaped: Ideas (Religion, Education, Media, Culture), Structures (Law & Order, Social Relations, Security, Domestic Politics, Foreign Policies), and Life (Family, Social Order, Health, Race, Population, Labour). The more open the society, the easier it is to demoralize. Because every society has agents that are against it, and the more open the society, the louder are these voices. From simple criminals and ideological terrorists to the unscrupulous businessman or small groups of foreign agents in the guise of NGOs or other invisible lobbies (there are a few in between these as well) with newer blood in the shape of fresh students and social media influencers, which add to the volume with time. The better the synchronization between these agents, the easier it is to multiply the cumulative force and force a society towards its complete collapse.
So, how is complete demoralization achieved? Here are just a few random subjects (picked from among the examples in the previous paragraph) and methods:
In the case of religion, the idea is to try and destroy it. Put it under serious negative light, ridicule it, discredit it at every turn. The objective is to first make the mass move away from the key purpose of religion – to keep in touch with their idea of a higher power, to practise moral-discipline, or to seek spiritual solace… whichever. Take it to a state when the traditional religion starts getting equated with embarrassment in the minds and actions of the subject population. So we have social media, messaging apps, stand-up comedians, Bollywood celebrity buzz ridiculing and/or discrediting the traditional religion of the soil with while subtly upholding narratives that are based upon the mission of foreign religious/cultural imperialism. In time, the original religion would be replaced. Obviously.
In the case of education, the agenda is to gradually move the students away from pragmatism and classical education – physics, chemistry, maths, biology, design, grammar, foreign languages – and push them towards ambiguities like sexual orientation studies, mating rituals of tribes – anything that numbs average capacity towards logic and reason. The idea is to create a multitude of socially dysfunctional, and easily recruitable youth. What we see in the USA today is a classic example of this. That is something that we could very well witness in India in few years; our love for anything ‘Western’, and demoralization of native culture has created a loop that is now self-sustaining. About what could be… We see a glimpse of that already through the Indian Left. They have been quite vocal about fielding PhD candidates for elections, but what most people miss noticing is that very few of their younger candidates have their doctorates in hard sciences. In that sense, the process is on.
For social life, the traditional gets slowly replaced mostly by superficial, some fake or shallow charade. Westernization can be a classic example – one that is not just restricted to youngsters stuffing themselves with McDonald and KFC fries, but is also visible through the advent of ‘international’ schools and their way of making a fascinating mess of a child’s sense of self-worth, life values, his concept of struggle success and failure; it is a long list there. The choice that people can or should exercise, gets slowly taken away through propaganda (celebrity endorsements and advertisements, peer pressure, word of mouth, ‘trends’); leaving them with copious amounts of sense of fear-loss-stress – one that can only be addressed through complete submission.
Media is extremely interesting too. “How come they have almost monopolistic power on your mind? They can rape your mind. But who elected them? How come they have the nerve to decide what is good or bad for you, or for the leader that you elected?” asks Bezmenov. This is one tool that is the most active in eroding the power structure (a complex mix of several institutions that is mostly elected by the population directly or indirectly). And by allowing otherwise average journalists (nobody elected them) with dubious funding sources to wield this kind of a power where they blatantly disparage our elected representatives, we are instrumental in undermining the essence of the electoral system – a political mechanism that we think is the best so far, and the one we try to live by. Talk about cutting off the branch that we are sitting on.
Another intriguing example – not mainstream media, but an extremely crucial add-on, is Bollywood. There is a social media post about scriptwriter Javed Akthar: the stories that he wrote, the characters he eulogised, the villains that he created, and the resultant narrative that he kept feeding the mass over the last few decades. I would suggest a read-up if you have not already. We have movies that praise mafias or terrorists and their family members to high heaven with every moviemaker inventing different kind of swag to make an impassable filth of a character look irresistible to the billion strong movie goers and sympathize at their ‘misfortune’: their misfortune being depicted as the result of an ‘inhuman’, ‘amoral’, ‘illegal’ (choose your pick) law and order structure and/or institution. Bollywood is the next best machine for subcontinental subversion through media after the corporate mainstream news churners.
These are a few of the pop areas that get our attention; hence I picked them up over the others. But make no mistake; EVERY ONE of the areas tracked under 1. Ideas, 2. Structures, and 3. Life, are being subjected to a protracted, slow demoralization over a period by the global liberal order that finds political boundaries, cultural identities, and the resultant possibility of an assertion for self-determination detrimental to the plan for a complete control. Used to be the Soviet Union about half a century ago. Not anymore. While the ideas used definitely have ‘KGB’ stamped all over them, their ownership has changed hands after the Berlin Wall. It is a shadow-conglomerate now that comprises of Big Industries… bankers, ‘philanthropists’, merchants, intelligence agencies NGOs and lobbies associated with Big Interests – people who have learnt to mix old McCarthy with the art and science of KGB propaganda to create a universalist/expansionist process that looks like is about to take complete control over our lives. There are no heads to cut off anymore. Hence there is little logic in an offensive. The only way as of now is a defensive warfare. Dig those heels deep and get ready for a long haul.
Who knows, that bit of digging might unearth a common identity that could act as a binder. It is a mammoth undertaking, yes. But at least there is this one way to resist.
[Idea of the essay, and important points of reference taken from a lecture session of Yuri Bezmenov available freely on YouTube.]