When people say crazy things to a camera in America, it's called entertainment (reality television, specifically). When they say crazy things in Russia - especially when those crazy things involve a detailed scenario describing the inevitable disintegration of the United States, and thereby dovetail nicely with the Kremlin's dreamiest dreams - it's heralded as stone-cold fact and blasted all over the media (which the Kremlin owns and runs, of course).
If you haven't heard of good-time-Charlie Igor Panarin - an academic ex-KGB dude who, for the record, is a non-crackpot, well-respected thinker who backs up his guesstimates with real-world government stats - the Wall Street Journal has a handy primer on his thories. Nutshell: Panarin predicts the U.S. will fall apart in 2010, thanks to a combination of economic mayhem, immigration, and moral degradation! His theories aren't just sparked by the current recession headlines - he's been hawking this story for about a decade, but the current political climate there and socio-economic climate here is making folks especially receptive to the idea.
So what does this new, non-U.S. look like? Here's Panarin's doomsday scenario, in handy bullet-point form:
- He's calling a civil war for June or July 2010. The U.S. will splinter into six pieces, which'll be nabbed by various other countries like so many flatscreens during a looting.
- Alaska will fall back under Russian control (can someone please get an official Sarah Palin comment on this? Please?).
- The Republic of California will be under Chinese control (or at least its influence).
- D.C. and New York will form something called "Atlantic America," and possibly even join the European Union. (We know some people for whom this is pretty much a dream scenario.)
- Canada will grab a bunch of states and form the "Central North American Republic."
- The "Texas Republic" will cover a handful of southern states which may join Mexico.