Russians need a story.

The accumulated weight of Russia’s lies has to be pressing on something – there has to be a consequence to it.

For centuries they’ve valued strength above everything else, but they lie to achieve it, and because no one can trust anyone else, they are far weaker than their European neighbors. Maybe it’s time for them to understand the truth.

But to accept it, Russians need a moral exit. They need a way to feel good about themselves that isn’t a lie. They need to rediscover their own story. They need a new mythology.

But they’ve been lied to for so long: Russians are not ‘Rus’. They are not Kievan. They are Muscovites – Europeans, mostly – but their culture and institutions are Byzantine, Mongol, Tatar and Islamic. And that is an unappealing, uninspiring history.

This conflict may be truth’s conquest of strength. It will continue toward Moscow because truth and cooperation is stronger than strength exercised as savagery and corruption.

The faster Muskovites find their story and return to their roots, the less people will suffer.