Дата публикации: 13 ноября 2023
Автор(ы): Alexey Vasiliev
Публикатор: Научная библиотека Порталус
Источник: (c) Asia and Africa Today, # 8.31 August 2015 Pages 2
Номер публикации: №1699830560

Alexey Vasiliev, (c)

Yevgeny Maksimovich Primakov, statesman, diplomat, scientist, academician, organizer of science, publicist, has passed away.

Its significance for Russia was succinctly defined by President Vladimir Putin as he said goodbye to it: "The Great Citizen".

As an Orientalist, I will try to determine its place in science, primarily in Arabic studies and political science. In his review of his book "Confidential. The Middle East on Stage and Behind the Scenes "(Moscow, 2006) i wrote: "Such books were not, are not, and will not be" 1.

There was no exaggeration in those words. To write such a book, it was necessary not only to deal with the problems of the region, Russian-Arab and Russian-Israeli relations for several decades, to be familiar with, and sometimes maintain friendship with, Arab leaders, but at the same time to have the power of scientific analysis and literary talent.

These words did not mean that the author always agreed with Primakov's assessments and definitions. But the caliber of his talent and personality also lay in the fact that he could listen to other people's opinions, even the opposite of his own, other people's arguments, and sometimes agree with them and change his point of view if the arguments were convincing to him. In the second edition of that book (Moscow, 2012), he changed something in his concept, which was an honor for the author of these lines. Evgeny Maksimovich sent me his new books with a request to make comments, if any.

The peculiarity of his works was that in addition to general historical and political analysis, taking into account the creative Marxist approach, he paid great attention to the role of the individual in politics and in the historical process. And all over the world, individuals can break down stable ideas and patterns, but for the Middle East, the role of the individual simply cannot be exaggerated.

Yevgeny Primakov was a staunch supporter of Russia's cooperation with Arab countries, believing that it meets the national interests of both sides. He personally experienced Russia's withdrawal from the Middle East at the beginning of the "cursed" 90s, and as far as he could in all the posts - Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of the Council of Ministers, and then President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry-he tried to revive Russian - Arab cooperation and strengthen the role of Russia in the region. Sometimes it was just a personal initiative, but given its weight and influence, it became the course of the state and led to certain positive results, which were reflected many years later and are still being reflected today.

He understood the intricacies of politics in the Middle East and always preferred peaceful solutions to problems, repeatedly emphasizing that force does not solve problems, but only creates new ones. According to his beliefs, he was both a statesman and a democrat, but he believed that each country, each civilization chooses its own path of development, its own state structures, its own ways of developing a democratic society, democratic social systems. Therefore, Primakov categorically called the forceful methods of imposing American democracy in an alien civilizational environment "counterproductive".

In the field of international relations, he was a proponent of a multi-vector policy for Russia, taking into account the millennial experience of Russian statehood. In one of the last interviews he gave for my new book, Evgeny Maksimovich said: "One of the main directions of Russian foreign policy should be not to make an alliance with China against the United States and not to make an alliance with the United States against China, but to build relations with the two superpowers on the basis of mutually beneficial cooperation."

At the same time, his Oriental knowledge and political experience allowed him to formulate far - reaching and seemingly unrealistic ideas that turned out to be effective, namely, cooperation between China, India and Russia. This cooperation became the basis for the established structure of the BRICS, although at the time when this concept was put forward, the differences between China and India seemed insurmountable.

Let us not forget the role played by Primakov in defending the preservation of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Using his connections, political and scientific weight, he was able to prove to the president and other leaders of the country that Russia needs an Academy of Sciences. For him, the fate of science was inextricably linked with the fate of the country, with its future, with its revival.

A few words about human traits. He had a lot of friends. He was a cheerful, lively person, loved company, Caucasian toasts, practical jokes, could afford a little vodka or whiskey, never getting carried away with alcohol. He was unusually cordial towards people, keeping the connections that had been formed in his youth, really helping the widows of deceased friends.

But I want to mention one detail. Primakov, of course, had enemies or detractors. There were people who betrayed him. But in his memories, he never denigrates anyone. He can mention the real facts of relationships and someone's words, but he never gives humiliating characteristics to anyone, remaining above personal insults, but always finds very kind words in relation to people whom he believed, with whom he collaborated.

There are very few scientists and organizers of science like Evgeny Maksimovich. He deserves that IMEMO, where he was the director, should bear the name of Primakov. And not only the Institute. Streets and squares should also bear the name of the former Prime Minister of Russia, who led his country back from the brink.

He "did not turn pink" in his life2. He deserved to turn pink when he died.

Alexey VASILIEV, Academician

Vasiliev A. 1 Says the grandmaster of Middle Eastern Politics // Asia and Africa today. 2007, N 3, p. 11. (Vasiliev A. 2007. Govorit grossmeister blizhnevostochnoi politiki // Azjya i Afrika segodnya. N 3) (in Russian)

Alexey Vasiliev. 2 He didn't turn pink... // Asia and Africa today. 2014, N 11. (Vasiliev Alexei. 2014. On ne zabronzovel... // Aziya i Afrika segodnya. N 11) (in Russian)

Опубликовано на Порталусе 13 ноября 2023 года

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