April 2018 Guest Speaker, Tony Kevin

Vintage Reds were delighted to welcome Tony Kevin to talk about
his book, Return to Moscow (University of Western Australia, 2017).

Tony worked for thirty years as a diplomat, including as ambassador to Poland and Cambodia in the 1990s. His first posting was in Moscow in 1969-71, and he made brief visits again in 1985 and 1990.

In 2016 he made a 4-week trip to Russia as an independent traveller. Tony is a Russophile, and gave a strongly pro-Russia talk. He believes that we are completely unaware of how overwhelmed we are by Western anti-Russia news. Whereas in other news story we presume some state of regularity, when the news is from Russia we presume irregularity. In the misinformation echo-chamber of the West it requires a huge effort of will and intellect to judge things from the outside.

Tony gave alternate readings to a series of news items, from the Skripals’ poisoning to the use of nerve gas in Syria. Putin is no saint, but has an approval rating of 80% and is “an honourable man”, though this term needs interpretation. The West needs a malign enemy to validate its extraordinary levels of military spending.

Tony does not support the International Campaign against Nuclear Weapons because he thinks Russia needs a nuclear deterrent. Previously Soviet states are now independent and lining up to join NATO; Russia is surrounded by hostile countries.

Photo: Tony Kevin signs his book

Tony recommends the Russian government-funded news site https://www.rt.com, “Russia Today”.