Moscow, Dec.30 (ANI): Russian academic Igor Panarin has predicted that the U.S. will fall apart in 2010.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Panarin is of the view that an economic and moral collapse will trigger a civil war in the United States, and this will lead to its eventual breakup.
The Russian state media has taken a particular interest in Panarin's views, so much that he is being interviewed as much as twice a day about his predictions.
"It's a record, but I think the attention is going to grow even stronger," the WSJ quotes 50-year-old Professor Panarin, as saying.
A former KGB analyst, Panarin is the dean of the Russian Foreign Ministry's academy for future diplomats.
He is often invited to Kremlin receptions, lectures students, publishes books, and appears in the media as an expert on U.S.-Russia relations.
But it's his bleak forecast for the U.S. that is music to the ears of the Kremlin, which in recent years has blamed Washington for everything from instability in the Middle East to the global financial crisis.
Panarin's views also fit neatly with the Kremlin's narrative that Russia is returning to its rightful place on the world stage after the weakness of the 1990s, when many feared that the country would go economically and politically bankrupt and break into separate territories.
A polite and cheerful man with a buzz cut, Panarin insists he does not dislike Americans. But he warns that the outlook for them is dire.
"There's a 55-45 percent chance right now that disintegration will occur. One could rejoice in that process," he adds.
"But if we're talking reasonably, it's not the best scenario -- for Russia," he says.
Panarin posits, in brief, that mass immigration, economic decline, and moral degradation will trigger a civil war next fall and the collapse of the dollar.
Around the end of June 2010, or early July, he says, the U.S. will break into six pieces -- with Alaska reverting to Russian control.
In addition to increasing coverage in state media, which are tightly controlled by the Kremlin, Panarin's ideas are now being widely discussed among local experts.
He presented his theory at a recent roundtable discussion at the Foreign Ministry.
The country's top international relations school has hosted him as a keynote speaker.
During an appearance on the state TV channel Rossiya, the station cut between his comments and TV footage of lines at soup kitchens and crowds of homeless people in the U.S.
The professor has also been featured on the Kremlin's English-language propaganda channel, Russia Today. (ANI)