This Sunday at 1pm, the Australian branch of the Russian Orthodox Church, with the approval from the Russian and Syrian consulates, have organised a protest against Turkish aggression. The protest will begin from the Russian Consulate in Sydney and end at the Turkish Consulate. In an exclusive interview, Al-Masdar News has spoken with Simeon Boikov, an organiser for the upcoming protest.
A-M: Tell us a bit about yourself and your position in the Russian community in Australia.
SB: I’m the elected president of the Russian Trans-Baikal Cossacks. It is a historical and cultural organisation made up of Cossacks. It was formed in 2011 with connections to Cossacks in Russia.
A-M: Tell us more about the Trans-Baikal Cossacks in Australia.
SB: Our organisation has been productive in supporting Russia as much as possible, within the guidelines of Australian law. We openly manifest that we will support Russian foreign policy, and support Russia as much as Australia allows us too. Thankfully Australia allows us to do a lot. Australia allows us to do many things including public assembly, have Russian newspapers and so forth. I’m the editor of the Australian-Russian Newspaper, The Russian Frontier, which is very pro-Putin.
We rallied for Putin and support him in the G20. We created a good counter balance to anti-Russian groups in Australia like the Ukrainians who are obsessed in being anti-Russian. We keep them in their place. It’s important to show those in Russia that in Australia, which is the best country in the world in terms of stands of living and etc, to see that people are in solidarity with them. I believe Russians overseas should support Russia. It’s not unusual as other diaspora communities support their own countries.
A-M: As president of the Trans-Baikal Cossacks in Australia, what has been your reaction to Turkish aggression against Russia and the death of the Russian pilot?
SB: Turkey historically has always been instigators of war and has always been a puppet of the western powers. Even in this situation, Turkey isn’t acting on its own. Throughout history they have always instigated something with western masters dictating the course of action, and this is a perfect example. We have been at war with Turkey 30 times and 30 times we have defeated them. They still haven’t understood that to fight with Russia is impossible. If Russia has to, it will teach them a lesson.
Russia must answer firmly on such aggression and Putin declared that Russia will seek revenge to the full extent that’s possible. He called Turkey backstabbers and traitors in which they are. Turkey demonstrated its attitude towards the situation when they offered no immediate condolences and hid under the skirt of NATO. This demonstrates Turkey isn’t an independent major power. It’s a parasite of the world and sells its own interests out as it’s a coward.
They attacked the Russian plane over Syrian airspace. The Turks will lose and are starting to lose. They are already losing the Russian tourist industry, which is billions of dollars’ worth. There’s the question in the duma whether to turn off the gas to Turkey, which relies on Russia for 60% of its gas. A lot of manufacturing and goods will stop. Iran has already said it will cover any import deficit with its own products and can replace Turkish products. Russia should always be close with Iran. We’ve never had any problems with Iran for over 100 years. Iran is a good ally and is a moderate Muslim country, although the West perceives it to be extreme. It is a very good country, a very normal country. Iran never supplied mujahedeen forces in the Caucasus like Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Russia may take action, and Turkey will regret this for the next 50, 100 years. 30% of the Turkish population are Kurds. Kurds want independence and have been trying to get it for 100 years. We can do many things, we don’t need to take military action or bomb Turkey, and we don’t need to use primitive methods like the Turks use. We can simply recognise the independence of the Kurds, arm them, and politically support. It will create headaches. Kurds have always dreamed of their own state. Armenians would gladly cause problems on the border. They will want revenge for the genocide. Then we have the Greeks in Cyprus. We can give them the green light. They dream of having all of Cyprus back. We have Constantinople which in Orthodox prophecies has to return back to Orthodox control. It’s the capital city of the Byzantine Empire. There are many things Russia can do to make Turkey really regret what they did. I think slowly we will see this developing. This is the new style of warfare.
A-M: Are there any efforts within the Russian community in Sydney that help the Russian efforts in Syria, if not, what can the Russian diaspora do to help the Russian military?
SB: It’s important when citizens of Australia and Western countries support Russia. People in our community share news articles to their friends and so forth. But in Syria, Russia doesn’t need any help. The Russian military is so strong and we have good technology and airplanes that our prayers and political support is good enough.
A-M: Why is it so important that Russia helps the Syrian government in its fight against terrorism?
SB: We love Syria, Assad and the Syrian people. We are helping Syria because the situations in Syria will determine the fate of global politics. Every single major power besides India and China is involved in the conflict against Saudi Arabia, Qatar and other countries who sneakily support ISIS. ISIS are the puppets of the Saudis, and the Saudis are the puppets of the Americans. ISIS and the Free Syrian Army were created, supplied and armed by the Americans. It is Russia and its allies against the dirty tactics of the Americans. This is an excellent opportunity for Russia to demonstrate its military might. Here the whole world can see. Russia has done more damage to ISIS in 2 months than the US has done in 2 years. The US pretends to fight ISIS.
A-M: How was this protest organised, why was it organised, what do you hope to achieve and why is it so important?
SB: The protest was organised by citizens of Australia who care about the situation. Many of these people are of Russian, Serbian, Greek, Lebanese, Syrian, Iranian and Armenian heritage. We have to send a clear message to the Turkish consulate. Hopefully we make enough commotion that the Turkish consulate general rings up Turkey in a panic saying ‘even Australia is against us, we need to stop shooting down Russian planes that are bombing ISIS.’ We need to make a strong political statement. Everything will be in the guidelines of the law. In demonstrating we will be supporting Russia, the Russian pilots, the Russian government, in their fair fight against ISIS, and the Assad government and other allies like Iran.
P. Antonopoulos is currently a Candidate for an MA Degree, writing his dissertation on the Saudi-Iranian Geopolitical Rivalry in the Syrian War.
You can follow him on twitter: https://twitter.com/oulosP