A Russian state TV host said that his country is “rediscovering” its true purpose to again be an expansionist empire.

“I am a part of an empire-making nation. That made the biggest empire in existence to date,” the host, Sergey Mardan, said on his show, “Mardan,” following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s signing of a law on Wednesday creating the “Day of Unification.”

Putin established the Day of Unification on Sept. 30 to celebrate Moscow’s illegal annexation of the Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson Regions of Ukraine.

“Everyone understands that this list is incomplete. For now, Russia doesn’t dare to define what it really has in mind and what it’s really all about,” Mardan said.

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In an interview with Russia-1, Russian General Andrey Mordvichev had made similar comments, saying that the full-scale invasion of Ukraine is just a “stepping stone” to a wider conflict with Europe.

“The war will persist for an extended period. Discussing specific dates doesn't make sense... When it comes to Eastern Europe and what needs to be done, it will certainly require more time,” the general said.

Russia continues to call its full-scale invasion of Ukraine a “special military operation” to rid Ukraine of so-called “Nazis.” However, Moscow is simply being cautious with its terminology, Mardan said. 

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“You can use the most watered-down, meaningless or meaningful definitions,” Mardan said. “You can call it denazification or demilitarization. Call it whatever you want! Everyone knows what it really means.”

Mardan said that while the “Day of Unification” holiday will be frightening for other nations, it will be celebrated by Russians.

“Pointless existence is the worst existential horror. There are some nations whose existence is pointless,” he said.

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Mardan said that for him and other Russians, it’s strange to hear the Western media report that Putin wishes to restore the Soviet Union to its former glory when the goal is much larger.

“For anyone who understands the retrospective of our national consciousness for the last 1,000 years. For us, the restoration of the USSR sounds a bit funny. What Soviet Union? Wake up!”

“We can rewind it by 800 years more,” Mardan said – referring to a time when the modern nations of Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, Poland, and Georgia were part of the Russian Empire – and Russia was on a seemingly continuous path of expansion.

The host’s comments come in the wake of a report by a United Nations investigative team, which found that Russian state media rhetoric could amount to incitement of genocide. 

Among the more recent of the regularly inflammatory statements coming out of Russian propaganda, was one by political commentator Elena Markosyan on Sept. 2:

“Every [Ukrainian] face is a pig snout. Every action is a joke. It resulted in the country’s degradation. I have no hatred for these people. I have no pity for them either. I look at it as a doctor. A doctor has to cure a sickness,” she said.

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