Sunday, March 10, 2013

3.10.13 - Russia Blogs and Press Review

3.10.13 - Russia Blogs and Press Review

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
NEWSLINK: Chavez death puts under threat Russia’s position in Latin America #RUSSIA #CHAVEZ #VENEZUELA #LATINAMERICA

Chavez's death puts under threat Russia's position in Latin America
[Chavez's death puts under threat Russia's position in Latin America - ITAR-TASS - March 7, 2013 -] ITAR-TASS takes a look at Russian press coverage of ...
12:18 07/03/2013RUSSIAN PRESS REVIEW

Chavez’s death puts under threat Russia’s position in Latin America

The Russian newspapers publish broad comments on possible consequences of the death of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. According to some experts, Venezuela will have to begin the rapprochement with the United States and refuse from privileged relations with Russia.
Venezuela will elect a new president in a month, the Kommersant daily reported. But even in case of victory of Chavez’s successor Vice-President Nicolas Maduro either Venezuela or Russia’s position within the country will change. According to the estimates of the experts, Venezuela will have to begin rapprochement with the U.S. and refuse from privileged relations with Russia, which were mainly based on personal relations between Hugo Chavez and the Russian leadership. This factor may threaten sweeping Russian projects in Venezuela and multibillion investments.
Russia has something to lose in Venezuela, the newspaper noted. The experts estimate at no less than 30 billion dollars all the projects, which Russia launched with Hugo Chavez. Now their guarantor passed away.
Meanwhile, no matter who will win the elections, the Venezuelan policy, according to the estimates of the experts, will be changed drastically. “No new authorities will adhere to such an out and out anti-Americanism, which Chavez propagated. In case of victory of Maduro the relations between Venezuela and the United States will begin to improve gradually. If the opposition comes to power, the country will begin to reorient rapidly towards the U.S.,” Chairman of the Presidium of the Russian Council on Foreign and Defense Policy Fyodor Lukyanov told the Kommersant daily.
However, the Kremlin voiced the hope that “a positive and constructive agenda of Russian-Venezuelan relations will remain unchanged.” Meanwhile, Lukyanov said with confidence, “The abnormal situation in the 2000s, when Venezuela became one of Russian main world partners, will hardly continue after Chavez’s death, because it was linked personally with his personality, his specific political views and ambitions.” The expert believes that “many agreements between Moscow and Caracas will remain on the paper after all, and other agreements will be revised.”
Deputy head of the Russian-Venezuelan Business Council Vladimir Semago has a more categorical view on the issue. “After Chavez’s death all the camouflage of the so-called friendship with Venezuela will fade away,” he stated. In his words, one of the most ambitious projects that is the establishment of the Russian National Oil Consortium to develop the Orinoco Oil Belt together with the Venezuelan state-run corporation PDVSA is “a big myth”. “The consortium does not produce and does not develop anything yet. From the Russian side only two companies – LUKOIL and Rosneft remained really in the consortium,” he explained.
The Vedomosti daily also predicts that the cooperation with Venezuela will change from that cooperation under Chavez. The newspaper noted that the struggle at the elections for the post of the Venezuelan president will be waged between Chavez’s official successor Maduro and opposition governor of the state Miranda Henrique Capriles.
Capriles was already competing at the presidential elections with Chavez and pledged some changes in the foreign policy. Capriles warned that he needs to discuss the stay of 40,000 Cuban workers in Venezuela with Cuban leader Raul Castro. Then Capriles warned the Russian ambassador that the country may terminate the purchases of Russian weapons, the newspaper recalled.
The experts believe that in any case Venezuela will try to ease up tensions with the United States, if the rightwing opposition wins, this process will go on quicker, if Chavez’s successor wins, this process will be slower. “Chavezism will exist for many years to come, but the policy of his supporters may change, and some of them will try to be more pragmatic,” Goldman Sachs chief economist for Latin America Alberto Ramos said.
For the years of his presidency Chavez visited Russia nine times, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily recalled. The main spheres of economic cooperation were determined, including the oil and gas industries, chemical and petrochemical industries, joint development of natural resources and military-technical cooperation. In these spheres the countries achieved tangible results that turned Venezuela in a privileged partner for Russia.
For instance, Venezuela became the second world largest purchaser of the produce of the Russian military and industrial complex after India. The Russian main arms exporting company Rosoboronexport estimates at 11-13 billion dollars the package of the weapon-related contracts signed with Caracas. As many as 100,000 Kalashnikov submachine guns AK-103 were delivered to Venezuela, two plants are being built in the country for the licensed assembling of submachine guns and the production of ammunition to them. The contract for the delivery of 24 multifunctional fighters Su-30MK2 and about 50 helicopters was fulfilled successfully. Caracas buys in Moscow the tanks T-72B1, mobile multiple launch fire systems Smerch 9K58, air defence systems Buk-M1-2 and S-300BM Antey-2500, infantry combat vehicles BMP-3M and armoured personnel carriers BTR-80A, self-propelled howitzers 2S19 Msta-S, 152-mm multiple launch fire systems BM-21 Grad, self-propelled mortars Nona-SBK, army trucks Ural-4320, Ural-3206 and other military hardware.
The RBC daily noted that the fuel and energy sector remains the top priority of Russian interests in Venezuela, particularly Rosneft, LUKOIL, TNK-BP and Gazprom Neft invested in the development of local projects. Last January Rosneft President Igor Sechin stated that the company will invest 10 billion dollars in the effective projects in Venezuela. “Maduro’s possible election as president remains ideal for Moscow, as the latter pledged to retain Chavez’s policy. If Capriles comes to power, a short-term program will be to keep the reached agreements in effect,” expert of the Centre for Political Conjuncture Dmitry Abzalov said. “In any case these deals cannot be cancelled so easily, because they are not only signed by Chavez, but also approved by the parliament. Meanwhile, Caracas expects a budget deficit this year, because the state authorities will hardly dare to annul the previous contracts and seek new partners for them urgently,” he said.
Chavez made angry many people in his homeland and other countries, the Novye Izvestia daily reported. Coming to power, he launched sweeping reforms, that is the Bolivarian Revolution. Chavez nationalized the oil industry, then allocated a larger part of petrodollars to the social programs, thanks to which he gained sympathies of the millions of poor Venezuelans for many years.
He infuriated Washington with his anti-American rhetoric, friendship with all U.S. enemies from Cuban leader Fidel Castro to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad due to his ardent attempts to consolidate the Latin American countries, where the governments, which were formed from the leftwing forces, came to power one after another. His enemies were anticipating when finally this Communist populist politician (as a U.S. senator named him) will show his ‘true face’, wrapping up democracy and launching the policy of terror. Then, say, Chavez’s enemies will have free hands to take the same actions against Venezuela, as with other ‘villains’ from ‘the evil axis’: impose sanctions on the country and ‘democratize’ the country with the U.S. marines in any possible case. But this moment of truth did not come. Moreover, Chavez even did not leave the customary heritage of the dictators – multibillion bank accounts and luxurious palaces. The comandante lived on a moderate presidential salary of 485 dollars, which he set for himself

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
NEWSLINK: Russia Won’t Tell Assad to Go, Sees Flexibility Among His Foes #RUSSIA #SYRIA #ASSAD #LAVROV #USA

NEWSLINK: Russia Won't Tell Assad to Go, Sees Flexibility Among His Foes
[Russia won't tell Assad to go, sees flexibility among his foes - Reuters - Steve Gutterman - March 8, 2013 -]...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
NEWSLINK: Russia Draws Up Business Plan To Revive The Northern Sea Route #RUSSIA #ARCTIC #TRANSPORT #TRANSIT #ENERGY

NEWSLINK: Russia Draws Up Business Plan To Revive The Northern Sea Route
[Russia Draws Up Business Plan To Revive The Northern Sea Route - - Igor Alexeev - March 7, 2013 -

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
NEWSLINK: Russia & Georgia: Wine-Tasting #RUSSIA #GEORGIA #TRADE #WINE

NEWSLINK: Russia & Georgia: Wine-Tasting
[Russia & Georgia: wine tasting - Financial Times - Isabel Gorst - March 7, 2013 -] The Financial Times covers preparati...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
Envoy Denies Blanket Ban on US Entry for Russian Lawmakers #RUSSIA #USA #MAGNITSKY #VISAS #DUMA @McFaul @McFaulRu

Envoy Denies Blanket Ban on US Entry for Russian Lawmakers
MOSCOW, March 8 (RIA Novosti) ­ US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul denied late Thursday that hundreds of Russian legislators may be blacklisted for US entry for supporting a ban on adoptions of...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
EU liberals support revival of Helsinki Process in Russia #RUSSIA #HELSINKI #EU #POLITICS #HUMANRIGHTS #DEMOCRACY

EU liberals support revival of Helsinki Process in Russia
TALLINN. March 7 (Interfax) - Members of EU liberal and democratic parties and movements said they were concerned that Moscow was straying from its international obligations in the Council of Europ...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
Russian president explains falling output with market conditions #RUSSIA #ECONOMY

Russian president explains falling output with market conditions
(Interfax - Vologda, 7 March, 2013) Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised that the nomination of the new head of the central bank will be a surprise for everyone. "It will be unexpected and...

via oD Russia by Anastasia Kirilenko on 3/8/13
Today is International Women’s Day, a holiday in Russia, though possibly with few celebrations in the penal colonies where the Pussy Riot women are being held. Open Democracy Russia is proud to publish two letters from the prison blog of one of them, Maria (Masha) Alyokhina, to Anastasia Kirilenko.

The thoughts of a prisoner – they’re not free either. They keep returning to the same things.

Alexander Solzhenitsyn, A day in the life of Ivan Denisovich

‘Unfortunately, by the time you get this letter my thoughts will probably have changed completely; perhaps even my problems will have radically changed. Most importantly, I could be sent to another penal colony before the parole hearing. So I will limit myself to talking about the present, and there’s quite a lot to say about that. As to what happens later on, we’ll see.
‘I’m still in solitary, but this absolutely doesn’t stop me thinking about how to change the system. Indeed, it’s impossible not to think about that here. The word “system” is itself a cliché, but even the phrase “improve the efficiency of prisons” is wrong, mainly because efficiency is a result. A result can be achieved by a combination of methods: here the method is a statute. It is, of course, a very tall order to change things (lots of them) at the level of legislation, but I increasingly realise that the method/result is not at all what’s so upsetting.
‘There is a kind of objective reality in Putin’s policies whereby one can go to prison for nothing. Inside the prison one can also be punished for nothing, and prison, like any institution, is usually a mirror of the way things are.
‘When we try to change the state of affairs, be it at the micro (prison) or macro (politics) level, we become involved in a process. This is what gives me no peace: that process is enacted by live people, who are zealous, while at the same time hating their work (not quite the right word, it’s probably more that they’re sick of it and don’t really like it – we have to keep an eye on the censor!), but they nevertheless carry on meticulously contributing to that process. It’s not days or months, but years and years…and what do they get for it? What are they doing it for? True, they have families and children, but the children carry on their work, they are the heirs, who have automatically absorbed it all. Time goes by and we see those children working zealously, sometimes wilful, at other times giving the commands. Giving orders is the real thing, which is perhaps why our people are so unwilling to work.
‘When I arrived here and started to write to human rights campaigners, and then to complain, it was of course not because I had failed to understand the system and was relying on their honesty, but because I simply couldn’t do anything else. To behave differently would have meant contributing to something that no one actually likes. To this life of simply doing time. I think that it’s here, in the area of action (decision) that human will is the key. An action carried out acquires a life of its own; it is the basis of an identity, perhaps not even the basis but something absolutely vital, the essence of what is right, a completely intuitive thing.
‘We women prisoners will get hold of shawls, we’ll work for 200 roubles a month and say nothing, we’ll wash in a dirty barn, 50 of us together hosing ourselves down from an old mayonnaise bucket (a very necessary commodity!), duck and weave, inform on people and play double games. The same things go on in the world outside, but they’re called by different names there. Do you remember what Mandelstam wrote “We were decent people and have become scum”? Though now I wonder if there were ever any decent people.’
Maria Alyokhina, one of the members of the controversial Pussy Riot group, is serving a two-year term of imprisonment. Photo: (cc) Demotix/ Anton Belitskiy
Kirilenko: ‘Is Mandelstam your favourite poet? What about his poem about Stalin, the one for which he was exiled? Did that poem mean anything to you? Did it have any bearing on your part in the protests?’
‘Of course his poem has a resonance for me. Once you have become acquainted with the life described in it, it couldn’t be any other way.
‘I am amazed by the people who put up barriers: this is art and that is modern art. Real art is always contemporary, because it’s on that astonishing boundary with time or outside it, while at the same time (☺)breaking down the barrier. It’s a gesture from Freedom to eternity. An artist understands this, but a person looking at it from an ordinary, everyday point of view sees only the form.
‘One has the impression that 20th century philosophy in its entirety has passed us by, because people seem to have forgotten the values of things, despite the many years of work on conceptualisation put in by the existentialists. Any action or assistance rendered in everyday life has to be regarded first and foremost as an attempt to come just a little nearer to each other to try and find an opportunity for dialogue.
‘The gloom inspired by the presidential representative [mechanical engineering assembly shop manager] Kholmanskikhor the ‘comrade deputies’ who languish inside the Duma is the result pure and simple of the failure of communication between people in Russia. It seems to me that we, as a society, or, if you like, a nation, have allowed this to happen and we are thus responsible.
‘[The philosopher Merab] Marmardashvili had the wonderful idea that all concepts–“freedom”, “honour” or, for instance, “democracy” - only have any meaning because for centuries people have given them substance with their blood and their bodies, but what are we doing? One has only to listen to the words on the wind to understand.
‘Putin can spend a thousand hours on the air droning on about “sport-patriotism”. Everyone will understand – or perhaps not everyone, just us? In the Moscow pre-trial detention centre I actually went to talk to a priest, not at a service, just in an attempt to establish some kind of a dialogue. It became apparent that for him there was no difference between the president and the tsar (seriously!) and that our society is held together by resignation (for resignation, read ignorance). He then suggested I should kiss his hand! It’s both terrible and strange, but this kind of truth is very close to us.
‘I’m all right: I’m not taking tranquillisers any more– I only took them for a week, mainly for insomnia.
‘Everyone has seen our (mine, Katya’s and Nadya’s) faces, but I don’t want us to be just faces. It’s not just that I don’t want it, but that would be worse than anything else. I can only hope that with time the image of the revolutionary woman will be backed up by a serious narrative, rather than just emptiness.’

Today the Pussy Riot women in prison are being isolated from society to prevent them stirring up the Russian electorate with their political ideas. But even in Stalinist times the prisoner was entitled to correspondence. And progress doesn’t let the grass grow under its feet: the combination of internet technology and the postal service now means that the prisoner doesn’t need to disappear completely from the public eye.
Masha was a student of journalism at the Institute of Journalism and Creative Writing [former Maxim Gorky Institute, Moscow]. She wrote prose and verse, so I hope she will find writing a blog interesting too. Since she’s been inside, she’s been trying to defend the rights of all the prisoners in the penal colony, which resulted in the ‘bitches’ (habitual criminals) being sent along to sort her out.
So now she’s in solitary confinement. Perhaps no bad thing. ‘In prison one cannot avoid thoughts about how to change the system.’ She continues to write poetry, but she regards herself as still a student, so her poetry is just for her close friends.

Thumbnail: (cc) Demotix/Anton Belitskiy
Country or region:

The speaker will argue that as in most post-Soviet countries, civil society in Russia remains weak. Public knowledge of civil society activities is limited and NGOs have little access to the media to promote their work. The Kremlin's traditionally wary attitude towards non-governmental actors has recently toughened, as demonstrated by the closure of USAID offices in Russia and the so-called 'Foreign Agents Law'. Irina Yasina will discuss recent developments in Russian civil society and how civic activists could adapt to the changing political environment. Attendance is by invitation only. For more information please contact Lubica Pollakova

Georgia’s parliamentary elections on October 1, 2012, have ushered in, not merely a rotation of government, but a change of regime, from President Mikheil Saakashvili’s United National Movement (UNM) to billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Georgian Dream. The latter won an indisputable mandate in the narrow terms of “electoral democracy.” While Ivanishvili has taken over the government, Saakashvili is serving out his final presidential term until October, with rapidly diminishing powers of office. Five months after the elections, Georgia’s socio-economic modernization, institution-building and Euro-Atlantic integration processes are variously slowing down, grinding to a halt or being reversed.

The Obama administration had called for an orderly “transfer of power” in Georgia, and applauded it as a successful “democratic process” in the elections’ wake. The “transfer of power” was an orderly one initially as Saakashvili’s UNM conceded defeat in the elections, promptly handing over the executive power to Ivanishvili’s Georgian Dream. Soon, however, the anticipated orderliness turned into overt persecution of the former government by the new one, a decline in the quality of governance, and rollback of some key reforms (see EDM, November 13, 2012; December 12, 2012; January 29; February 11).

Faced with these outcomes, the United States seems to be reducing its engagement with Georgia. It is de-prioritizing the country in two ways: relative to Georgia’s earlier place among US foreign policy priorities, and relative to Washington’s own focus on Georgia during that country’s election campaign.

Those negative outcomes could not have come as a surprise to US or Western European officials responsible for policy toward Georgia. For, with very few exceptions, Prime Minister Ivanishvili’s winning Georgian Dream coalition looked from the outset like a throwback to the pre-2003, pre-reform Georgia, its mentalities, its ways of doing business economically and politically, its ingrained perception of Russia as centrally important to Georgia, and unpreparedness to choose (much less implement) a Euro-Atlantic orientation for the country.

Compared with President Saakashvili’s government (in office until October 2012), the Ivanishvili government is considerably older, less English-speaking and less Western-educated, as well as provincial by the experience and outlook of Ivanishvili’s entourage and most ministers. With very few exceptions, the new ruling team had been an indifferent bystander to the reforms that ensured Georgia’s state consolidation, economic take-off, key role as an international transit route, and prospects of integration with the West (see EDM, July 24, 2012).

Those transformative processes form the legacy of Saakashvili’s and the United National Movement’s reform efforts from 2004 to 2012. Following the regime change, those processes have been set back on three main fronts: institution-building, governance and foreign policy.

Georgia’s October 2012 elections have practically resulted in state capture by the country’s wealthiest individual. Ivanishvili’s Forbes-rated worth—at $6.5 billion—roughly equals one half of Georgia’s annual gross domestic product. Ivanishvili funded his own party, Georgian Dream, and five allied parties in the eponymous Georgian Dream coalition. Wealth on that scale also allowed Ivanishvili seemingly to promise social relief and investments from his own funds during the electoral campaign (see EDM, July 24, 2012).

The Georgian Dream party’s electoral slate, winner of the parliamentary elections, consists mostly of long-time recipients of Ivanishvili’s funding. These include cultural figures (artists, writers, theater and film personalities) and sports performers (including a significant contingent of wrestlers and karate fighters), all of whom Ivanishvili had generously subsidized as a Maecenas when traditional state subsidies dried up (see EDM, July 24, 2012). Lacking political and legislative experience, these were picked for their presumed loyalty to Ivanishvili. In that sense, Ivanishvili may be said to own the single largest parliamentary bloc. He has also appointed some of his own employees to top law enforcement posts: the new Internal Affairs Minister Irakli Garibashvili and new Prosecutor General Archil Kiblashvili, were recently serving as the head of Ivanishvili’s Cartu Bank Foundation and Ivanishvili’s personal lawyer, respectively.

Within the Georgian Dream six-party coalition, five are “niche parties” with narrow social bases and dependent on Ivanishvili for funding. Ivanishvili is the coalition’s leader, head of the coalition’s dominant party and prime minister, cumulatively. On that basis, he determines the government’s composition, as well as selects the Georgian Dream coalition’s candidate for the upcoming presidential election, at his full discretion.

Ivanishvili recently deprived Defense Minister Irakli Alasania of the post of deputy prime minister, which the defense minister concurrently held. Announcing the demotion, Ivanishvili explained that he was punishing Alasania for the latter’s ambition to run for president on behalf of the Georgian Dream coalition. Alasania may run on behalf of his own (small) party, but Georgian Dream will nominate someone else, Ivanishvili explained (Civil Georgia, January 23; see EDM, February, 14). To cap this public humiliation, Ivanishvili added a tale of adultery involving or affecting several persons (EurasiaNet, February 5). His allies are too dependent on Ivanishvili to risk taking issue with him.

State capture (leveraging economic-financial resources directly into political power) is associated with oligarchic systems (oligarchs dividing assets and power among themselves and continuously re-negotiating that division). Oligarchy is by definition a group phenomenon, involving a certain balance in the distribution of power at the top. Georgia, however, does not have any oligarchic-type group. Ivanishvili is alone at the top.

Georgia had experienced a state-capture attempt for the first time in 2007 by the made-in-Russia billionaire Badri Patarkatsishvili, who failed and died soon thereafter (see EDM, November 12, 2007; Kommersant, February 13, 2008). Patarkatsishvili and Ivanishvili had long been feuding with each other; if they had joined forces they could have shaken the fragile foundations of Georgia’s state institutions. Uniquely, perhaps, in the international system of nation-states, state capture in Georgia involves one individual tycoon, rather than an oligarchy.

The 2012 parliamentary election campaign involved a contest between Ivanishvili’s personal resources and the state’s administrative and media resources (mainly the incumbency advantage), with Ivanishvili apparently capable of outspending the governing party. In subsequent elections, however, both sets of resources—those of the state and Ivanishvili’s private resources—will be combined in a single center of power. Many in Washington and elsewhere had urged Saakashvili and his United National Movement to advance faster toward a system of checks and balances. Yet, the parliamentary elections have resulted in a concentration of power that would exclude any checks and balances, inflicting by the same token a setback to the previous government’s institution-building efforts, and merging political power with unmatched financial power in one pair of hands.

On March 2, Federal Security Service (FSB) personnel in St. Petersburg arrested members of the Nurjular organization, which in 2008 was designated as an extremist group by the Russian Supreme Court and outlawed ( Five citizens of Russia, four citizens of Azerbaijan and one citizen of Turkmenistan were arrested in the special operation in the St. Petersburg region. According to government officials, Nurjular was financially supporting Chechen militants and maintained close connections to radical Islamists in Turkey ( This wording indicates that the government agencies behind the arrests did not bother to provide a plausible explanation for their actions and simply offered a random pretext. It is hard to imagine anyone from St. Petersburg being able to finance the Chechen rebels. This explanation was apparently meant for the majority of the Russian public that does not regularly follow the situation in the North Caucasus closely.

It is not surprising that nine of the ten accused Islamists detained on March 2 were released the next day without charge and that only one remains in custody ( The nine were released despite the fact they had been declared extremely dangerous Islamists. Russian national media predictably did not cover the release of these people accused of extremism; their release was only covered by the local media outlets in St. Petersburg. So most Russians will continue to see the arrest of suspected Islamists as a successful operation of the Russian security services in St. Petersburg and will be unaware that the operation actually netted nearly no results.

In fact, the operation involving the “neutralization” of members of Nurjular raises a number of questions. The Russian government banned the activities of this organization after a philologist provided linguistic expertise showing the group was extremist in character ( Even Russia’s human rights ombudsman, Vladimir Lukin, defended this organization, whose activities were based on the works of Said Nursi, a prominent Turkish Islamic author of Kurdish origin. Lukin drew the court’s attention to the fact that Nursi’s books were widely respected in the Muslim world and that outlawing them would negatively impact Russia’s image among Muslims worldwide ( Despite these objections, Nursi’s works were officially designated as extremist and banned in Russia. So when the police now arrest Islamists, they tend to find Nursi’s books at the site of the arrest because prior to the ban these works were published in nearly all of Russia’s regions, including Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan, Makhachkala and Nalchik. So chances are always high that people who participate in any Muslim organizations will have Nursi’s books at hand.

A joint operation in St. Petersburg by police and FSB personnel three weeks before the latest arrests also yielded nearly zero results. In February, government agents arrested about 300 Muslims in the prayer rooms of the Apraksin Dvor trade center. Officials claimed that those arrested were radical Islamists ( The arrested Muslims, who were herded onto police buses, reportedly threatened the police that they would complain to Ramzan Kadyrov. This by itself is an interesting reaction, as it appears that Kadyrov is already seen as someone who can speak for Russia’s Muslims. In November 2012, members of the Party of Islamic Liberation (a.k.a. Hizb ut-Tahrir) were arrested in Moscow (, but those arrests also had no significant results.

The reason for the latest arrests of Muslims in St. Petersburg may have been as mundane as complaints by their Russian neighbors to police about the prayers being recited in the prayer rooms ( This is not all that surprising, but it could eventually lead to a violent Muslim backlash. Localities across Russia are using the fact that ethnic Russians comprise the majority in the country to prohibit Muslim communities from constructing mosques. The authorities usually delegate decisions on the issue of mosque construction to the citizens in order to avoid being accused of siding with the Muslims. The citizens then decide that they do not want a mosque in their neighborhood. For Russian residents, having a mosque in the central part of a Russian city necessarily means having to hear the Muslim call to prayer five times a day. The city of Moscow has consistently refused to build mosques for years. When local authorities designate an area for mosque construction (, several hundred people invariably stage a protest and the authorities—under the pretext of negative public opinion—forbid the construction of the mosque ( The first site of religious clashes could be Novokuznetsk where, on March 5, police dispersed Russian nationalists protesting the construction of a mosque in the city ( Russian nationalists and Muslims in that city are at loggerheads, and the conditions for an uprising sparked by a religious conflict are ripe.

The muftis insist that at least three or four new mosques be built in Moscow (, which would relieve the city’s central mosques of their excessive loads of parishioners. Today these mosques are overcrowded and cannot accommodate many of the Muslims. There are currently a total of five full-fledged mosques in Moscow ( However, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin fears that more mosques there will attract more Muslims and migrants to the city ( Even if the figure of two million Muslims in Moscow is exaggerated (, official sources already put the number of Muslims in Moscow at over half a million.

Thus, despite the growth of the Islamic segment of Russian society, Moscow retains a policy of suspicion and keeping Muslims at a distance from important decision-making in the government. This attitude produces distrust that could break out into outright confrontation at some future point. The Muslim part of Russia’s population will not tolerate being treated as second-class citizens and will demand their rights in society and in the governing of the country.

via Soviet Roulette by Fur Coat on 3/8/13

The other day I met a friend I had not seen in over twenty years. Insofar as this blog is centered on history and nostalgia, I don’t mind dwelling upon such encounters, even when they aren’t ostensibly related to Russian history. However, this friend, a pleasant reminder of the distant past, reminded me that I have been enthralled with Russia for longer than I care to admit. Talking with my friend, I am reminded that Russia has been with me for since early adulthood, if not before. A single dinnertime conversation reminded me of the complex circuitry of obsession. Long, long ago, this friend had given me a copy of my first Dostoyevsky’s novel, The Possessed. That book was of course a revelation to me. At the time, I was stunned that anybody had been able to publish a book like that—full of fire, sexual depravity, and dark nihilism. The fact that tsarist Russian censors had let the book pass seemed even more incomprehensible, but I suppose conservative aristocrats and radical intellectuals each have different takes on Dostoevsky’s treatment of conspiratorial murder in the service of atheism, nihilism, and revolution.

The evening’s Russian leitmotif doesn’t end there. This friend had introduced me to Ayn Rand, although she currently denies any affiliation for the Russian objectivist. At the very least, this friend taught me how to pronounce the thinker’s name, a unique talent in my shady corner of a small Chicago suburb. Unconvinced that I can stretch my theme even further? My friend had a brilliant father who invented a popular board game called Diplomacy, a game in which the Russian Empire loomed large. The game is set in Europe on the eve of the First World War. In this game, up to seven players attempt to manipulate others into helping to upset the balance of power. The game depends on the near-equality of all seven Great Powers, which included Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, Prussia, Italy, Turkey, and of course Russia.

As always, Russia was unique. While all other countries began the game with three armies (or navies as the case may be), Russia alone was granted the privilege or responsibility of fielding four military units. Looking back, this anomaly seems fitting. When you played Russia, you were inevitably forced to think in multi-dimensional ways. Specifically, you became involved in the Balkans and, at the same time, you moved again foes in the Baltic and Northern Europe. The strategic and symbolic effect of Russia’s position in the game mirrored that of historic Russia, which often balanced forces in these two areas, or balanced forces on its eastern and western flanks.

The game was always a memorable if exhausting experience. One played for hours upon hours and often gave up short of a decisive conclusion. The classical principle of balance of power almost always prevented the game from moving quickly to an end. If England grew stronger, France and German inevitably combined to overcome the threat before turning against one another. The Russian position resembled that of all the other powers, except for straddling two fronts. But its other unique characteristic was its location at the edge of the world. Although vulnerable on each of its two fronts to potentially superior forces, it faced no enemies to its back and therefore never quite collapsed altogether.

Thinking about the way Russia was represented on this board game reminds me of the extent to which we think about nations symbolically. What is Russia? Russians have of course wrestled with this question for several hundred years. But even ordinary, armchair gamers are confronted with constructed notions of the Russia nation-state. In Diplomacy, Russia is a big country, a threatening country: by virtue of its four military units, potentially more powerful than any other single country. In Diplomacy, Russia has a split personality: its armies and navies are powerful, but hopelessly separated from one another by strategically unfavorable terrain. Russia is an oriental power, heavily engaged with the other European powers but ultimately unique, situated at the edge of the ideologically constructed zone called Europe.

This notion of a constructed country comes in part from Antoinette Burton, who in turn relies on Benedict Anderson and a host of postcolonial theorists and practitioners. Burton spends a lot of her time diagnosing Britain. Who came up with this idea of what Britain means? Who benefits from this idea? Who reproduces this idea? Thinking back on my evening with an old friend, I can’t help but reflect on what Burton might call the contingent or even artificial nature of history. On a personal level, my idea of Russia, even my love of Russia, was influenced by a hundred different but related circumstances, including a board game, a Russian novel, and the public person of one of Communist Russia’s most famous critics. If my own definition of Russia has been manufactured in chaotic but not entirely random ways, how should we think about America’s overall perception of Russia and the Russian past? And why stop there? Who has gained, and who gains today, by a European or even global thesis that Russia is backward, violent, bipolar, or even soulful? I’ve spent a lot of time reading about Russia, but much less time thinking about how and why I’ve encountered the texts that I’ve read about Russia.

I’ll conclude by mentioning one of Antoinette Burton’s books, Archive Stories: Factions, Fictions, and the Writing of History, a collection of essays by various authors about the strange career of specific historical archives. Burton’s introductory message reminds us that archives are not themselves ahistorical. Each archive has a history. How and why archives were produced and maintained over time, and how they get to us matters a great deal. If we don’t have Foucault’s understanding of power, which is always already local, and always already contested, we may easily misread the sources, “missing the forest for the trees” as it were.

Take John Randolph’s essay in Archive Stories, entitled “On the biography of the Bakunin Family Archive.” In Randolph’s essay, we see how Bakunin’s papers have “lived” a long, complicated, and deeply politicized life. Over time, they have reflected a Romantic cult of sentimentality, supported the Bakunin’s sisters’ intervention in the public sphere, and undergirded Liberal, Bolshevik, and even Thaw political positions. Looking at the archive as a contested site of evolving political and cultural discursive positions is one way to ensure that the Bakunin papers don’t end up propping up an ahistorical or unexamined myth of Russia as a whole.

It’s interesting to hear Randolph mix his own personal observations about life in the archive with his broader treatment of the Bakunin papers. For when Randolph reminds us that the women who guard the papers at Pushkin House today are underpaid, we note that the archives not only have a history, but they may have a gender. At any rate, I remember my own awkward excursion to Pushkin House two years ago. Not knowing the language, nor even the history of the place, I ventured there as a tourist to the shrine of Russian literary culture. The goal was mystical, to soak up the religious afterglow of Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, and Bulgakov.

I guess this is the point of Archive Stories, to remind us that such pilgrimages come at a price if they reinforce or reproduce distorted or ultimately harmful views of a people. For my part, I’ll confess a moment of supreme awkwardness in Pushkin House, a moment that certainly reflects Burton’s concerns about ethnocentric and quasi-imperial attitudes toward the Other. In the archive, I spoke my own language. Worse still, I assumed that Russia was in economic free fall, and at one point offered a generous archivist a “tip” for spending so much time walking me through the exhibits. She refused, of course, but the audacity of my own condescension left me feeling ridiculous. I too am a part of the history of the Russia “idea.”

This post is dedicated to Alan Calhamer, inventor of Diplomacy and one of LaGrange Park's finest minds.

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
Pro-Kremlin youth movement Nashi to be revamped #RUSSIA #NASHI #POLITICS #PUTIN #YOUTH #TEENS

Pro-Kremlin youth movement Nashi to be revamped
(Russia Beyond the Headlines - - Alexei Bausin, RBTH - March 7, 2013) Russia's notorious pro-government youth movement Nashi is set for a complete overhaul. It is reported to be replace...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
Putin says fate of Pussy Riot women out of his hands #RUSSIA #PUSSYRIOT #PUTIN #LAW #POLITICS #RELIGION #PROTESTS

Putin says fate of Pussy Riot women out of his hands
(Interfax - March 7, 2013) Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied he can influence the fate of members of the female punk band Pussy Riot who are currently serving prison terms. He was talking...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13

Knock, Knock: The Return of the Propiska?
( - Mikhail Loginov - March 7, 2013) Mikhail Loginov is a journalist and novelist based in St. Petersburg. He is the author of the recently published bestselling political thriller...

via Johnson's Russia List's Facebook Wall by Johnson's Russia List on 3/8/13
NEWSLINK: A Nervous Russian Elite is Wary as Putin Transforms His Political Edifice #RUSSIA #POLITICS #CORRUPTION

NEWSLINK: A Nervous Russian Elite is Wary as Putin Transforms His Political Edifice
[A nervous Russian elite is wary as Putin transforms his political edifice - Washington Post - Will Englund - March 9, 2013 -

via Russia Beyond the Headlines's Facebook Wall by Russia Beyond the Headlines on 3/8/13
Masha Gessen details the encounter between Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and her family at the prison camp in Mordovia where she is currently serving time:

Daughter of Pussy Riot member visits mother in prison | Russia Beyond The Headlines
It has been a year since Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, a member of the punk group Pussy Riot, was arrested. Radio Liberty journalist Masha Gessen traveled with the prisoner’s relatives for a meeting in the prison camp in Mordovia, where Tolokonnikova is se

via Global Voices » RuNet Echo by Kevin Rothrock on 3/8/13
Earlier this week, a judge in Krasnodar disqualified [ru] a politician running for city council, after determining that his campaign materials infringed on the copyrights of three popular Internet social networks: Twitter, Facebook, and Vkontakte. What exactly was this man’s crime? He ran a black-and-white newspaper advertisement that included the three websites’ logos, indicating that voters could find more information about his campaign online. (He was also convicted of baiting voters with implied promises of free legal aid.)
The guilty party, one Gennady Ufimtsev, is a member of the opposition party Just Russia, and he joins Anatoly Ovechko, a fellow city council aspirant from the Communist Party, whose candidacy was also canceled by Judge Viacheslav Riadnev of the Leninskii Raion Court [ru] in Krasnodar. (Ovechko allegedly broke campaign finance laws by spending a whooping one thousand dollars [ru] over the mandated ceiling.)
Picture of Ufimtsev's controversial campaign ad. Screen capture from YouTube. 4 March 2013.Picture of Ufimtsev's controversial campaign ad. Screen capture from YouTube. 4 March 2013.
Though it may be hard to believe, Ufimtsev’s newspaper ad might very well violate the strict letter of Twitter’s brand display policy. Twitter offers its official trademark in four different color schemes (this is the company’s third design, adopted in June 2012, featuring only a minimalistic cartoon bird silhouette). In Ufimtsev’s campaign materials, he published the cartoon logo from Twitter’s second design, which Twitter’s current guidelines technically define as a “don’t.”
While Ufimtsev has Judge Riadnev to thank for his conviction and elimination from city council contention, he undoubtedly would also wish to extend his gratitude to rival candidate Rinat Galliamov, a member of the new party “Cities of Russia” (a government-friendly vehicle, probably designed [ru] to spoil the solidarity of the opposition vote). Galliamov is the man who brought the suit to court. And the “enemies list” doesn’t end there! In a March 6 blog post [ru] on LiveJournal, Ufimtsev singled out Maxim Burlachko, a United Russia candidate running for city council, who happens to be the son of Krasnodarskii krai’s elections commission chairman.
If Judge Riadnev was indeed trying to clear the Krasnodar city council election of any pesky opposition candidates, he appears to have acted a day too soon. As it happens, the verdicts against Ufimtsev and Ovechko don’t take effect until March 11—one day after the city council vote [ru]. (It appears that the plotters failed to account for the International Women's Day holiday on March 8.) In other words, both candidates can currently stand for election this weekend. If either wins a seat, however, the election results would be disqualified as soon as Riadnev’s ruling takes effect on Monday.
Not ones to be discouraged, Krasnodar’s legal officials are expediting the appeals process (though Ufimtsev and Ovechko have yet to petition for one), sending the original verdicts to a higher court for consideration tomorrow, on Saturday, March 9. This will allow another judge to uphold Riadnev’s ruling and keep the two candidates off the final ballot.
In connection with this case, online portal The Caucasian Knot spoke [ru] to local GOLOS representative and human rights activist Mikhail Veligodskii, who pointed out that it’s only natural for competing politicians to do everything they can to weaken (or even remove) their opponents. The real challenges, he suggested, are Russia’s “strict electoral laws and problems with the independence of judges.” Heading to the polls on Sunday, Krasnodar voters will have to ask themselves who among the remaining candidates offers solutions to these and other issues facing the region.
Written by Kevin Rothrock · comments (0)
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via Russia Beyond the Headlines's Facebook Wall by Russia Beyond the Headlines on 3/8/13
Russia’s human rights ombudsman, Vladimir Lukin, has filed a motion asking for the conviction of the punk band Pussy Riot to be overturned:

Human rights ombudsman seeks to overturn Pussy Riot conviction | Russia Beyond The Headlines
Russian human rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin want to cancel the conviction of the Pussy Riot band. Will he succeed?

via Russia Beyond the Headlines's Facebook Wall by Russia Beyond the Headlines on 3/9/13
The most prestigious event of Russia’s art season has begun:

Main program of Golden Mask performing arts festival starts | Russia Beyond The Headlines
The drama program of Russia’sthree-week-long, trendsetting, arts extravaganza opened on the first weekend of March this year

via Global Voices по-русски by Evgeniy Genievskiy on 3/9/13
5 марта 2013 года мир узнал о смерти президента Венесуэлы Уго Чавеса Фриаса.
Согласно сообщению на TeleSur [исп], вице-президент Николас Мадуро «сделал заявление по радио и телевиденью из военного госпиталя «Карлос Арвело» в Каракасе, в котором он заявил, что “сегодня, 5 марта, в 16.25 главнокомандующий и президент умер”».
После победы на выборах 7 октября 2012г. [анг] Чавес поехал на Кубу, чтобы сделать хирургическую операцию и серию лечебных процедур в связи с его борьбой с раком [анг]. Его состояние здоровья ухудшилось [анг], и его не видели в СМИ, начиная с декабря.
В Twitter можно проследить за точками зрения пользователей Сети с помощью слов Murió Hugo Chávez [исп.: смерть Уго Чавеса ], Nicolás Maduro [Николас Марудо] и #MuereChávez [исп.: Уго Чавес умирает].
Относясь с уважением к его известной антиимпериалистической идеологии, колумбийский писатель Гектор Абад (@hectorabadf) пишет:
@hectorabadf: Lo cierto es que Chávez sí inoculó el chavismo por toda América Latina.
@hectorabadf: истина в том, что Чавес прививал чавизм во всей Латинской Америке.
Тем временем в Венесуэле Нельсовн Бокаранада (@NelsonBocaranda) выражает свои соболезнования:
Miles marcharon en apoyo al presidente Chávez en enero, mientras seguía bajo tratamiento en Cuba. Foto de Jesus Gil, copyright DemotixТысячи человек прошествовали в поддержку президента Чавеса в январе 2013 года, когда он еще проходит лечение от рака на Кубе. Фото принадлежит Джезусу Гилу, Demotix ©
@NelsonBocaranda: Hugo Chávez Frías 1954-2013. Paz a sus restos y nuestro sentido de pésame a sus familiares y seguidores.
@NelsonBocaranda: Уго Чавез Фриаз 1954-2013. Покойся с миром, и наши самые искренние соболезнование его семье и последователям.
Маурисио Родригес (@MauricioRG28) [исп] выражает свое восхищение работой Уго Чавеса:
@mauricioRG28: Hombre sin tiempo ya eres eterno.Has entregado todo a la construcción de una patria incluyente y justa. Por eso, Comandante,tu pueblo te ama
@mauricioRG28: человек, вышедший за границы времени, ты уже вошел в вечность. Ты дал все, чтобы построить отличительную и справедливую страну. Вот поэтому, главнокомандующий, люди тебя любят.
Артуро Казаль (@ArturoCazal) выражает свою благодарность:
@ArturoCazal: Qué puedo decir. Seguiremos adelante. Luchando, amando… Gracias comandante Chávez
@ArturoCazal: что я могу сказать. Мы пойдем дальше. Борясь, любя… Спасибо тебе, главнокомандующий, Чавес.
Робрето Хуан Кармона (@SelenioE) [исп] считает, что Чавес бессмертен:
@SelenioE: Chávez es eterno, Chávez no estará nunca en una tumba.
@SelenioE: Чавес вечен. Чавес никогда не ляжет в могилу.
А Андреина Миарквиз вспоминает о разногласиях, которые посеял Чавес:
@mintina: Lo único que deseo es que Hugo Chávez se lleve con él todo el odio que sembró. Adiós.
@mintina: я только мечтаю о том, чтобы Уго Чавес забрал с собой всю ненависть, посеянную им. Прощай.
Lourdes (@lourdes_g) считает, что пора венесуэльцам вернуть себе страну:
@lourdes_g: это ваш шанс… выходите на улицы и верните себе свою страну! #venezuela [венесуэла ] #chavez [чавес] #muerechavez [чавес мертв]
Бывший президент Перу Алехандро Толедо (@atoledomanrique) также написал сообщение в Twitter:
@atoledo: Es la hora de la Democracia y del pueblo venezolano. Descanse en paz, Presidente Chávez.
@atoledo: самое время для демократии и народа Венесуэлы. Покойся с миром, президент Чавес.
Представитель оппозиции Венесуэлы Энрике Каприлес (@hcapriles) призвал к единству:
@hcapriles:En momentos difíciles debemos demostrar nuestro profundo amor y respeto a nuestra Venezuela!Unidad de la familia venezolana!
@hcapriles: в эти непростые времена мы должны показать нашу глубокую любовь и уважение к Венесуэле! Единство ради венесуэльских семей!
А RJ Gómez [исп] пишет в Facebook:
Ojala que ahora El y el pueblo de Venezuela puedan tener paz.
Я надеюсь, что Чавес и народ Венесуэлы отныне обретут мир.
Yrivalera (@Yri_27) [исп] просит интернет-пользователей выказывать уважение, когда они делятся своим мнением:
@Yri_27: #MuereChávez y la gente burlándose. ¿Qué importa si no eras Chavista? Es un ser humano y merece respeto.
@Yri_27: #MuereChávez [Чавес умирает], а люди шутят. Кого волнует, если ты не был чавистом? Он человек и заслуживает уважения.
Также президенты нескольких стран Латинской Америки выразили свои соболезнования посредством Twitter.
Хуан Мануэль Сантос (@JuanManSantos) [исп], Колумбия:
@JuanManSantos: Lamento profundamente la muerte del presidente de Venezuela Hugo Chávez Frías. Nuestras sinceras condolencias…
@JuanManSantos: я глубоко сожалею о смерти президента Венесуэлы Уго Чавеса. Наши искренние соболезнования…
Ольянта Умала (@Ollanta_HumalaT) [исп], Перу:
@Ollanta_HumalaT: Adiós Comandante y amigo Hugo Chávez. Mis sentidas condolencias a su familia y a todo el pueblo venezolano.
@Ollanta_HumalaT: до встречи, главнокомандующий и друг Уго Чавес. Мои искренние соболезнования его семье и народу Венесуэлы.
Согласно CNN México (@CNNMex) [исп], президент Боливии Эво Моралес утверждает, что «олигархи и империя, наверняка, празднуют». Президент Аргентины Кристина Фернандез объявила национальный траур [исп] с наполовину опущенными флагами. А Себастьян Пиньера из Чили выразился следующим образом [анг]: «У нас были разногласия, но я научился оценивать силу и преданность, с которой Уго Чавес боролся за свои идеалы».
И хотя в Венесуэле были мобилизованы [исп] полиция и военные, тысячи мнений были высказаны в интернете, многие из которых касались грядущих перемен, связанных с демократизацией страны. Колумбийская газета El País опубликовала мультимедийную хронику [исп] с 36 событиями, которые имели особое место в жизни президента Чавеса, лидера социализма XXI столетия.
Автор Cati Restrepo · Переводчик Evgeniy Genievskiy · Перейти на авторскую статью [es] · комментариев (0)
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via on 3/10/13
Небесное тело диаметром до 140 м, получившее название 2013 ET, специалисты сравнили с небоскребом или небольшим городским кварталом. При столкновении с Землей астероид мог бы уничтожить целый город.

via on 3/10/13
Митинговать собрались около 500 человек, которых полиция разогнала, применяя водометы и резиновые пули. По некоторым данным, более 50 человек были задержаны.

via on 3/10/13
Акунин отметил, что на писателя вылили "ушаты помоев" и призвал коллег быть спокойнее. По его мнению, Шишкин "поступил правильно". "Я и раньше к нему хорошо относился, а теперь буду относиться еще лучше", - заявил Акунин.

via Каспаров.Ru on 3/10/13
Первый канал вслед за НТВ показал "разоблачительный" сюжет о деятельности главы фонда Hermitage Capital Уильяма Браудера. В передаче "Воскресное время" рассказали об "инвалидном" бизнесе Браудера в Калмыкии.

via Газета.Ru - Комментарии by Борис Фаликов on 3/5/13
Сайентология возникла на границе между наукой и верой. Поэтому часто оказывается в центре ожесточенных споров.

Андрей Колесников: Конституционное право в особых мненияхТри особых мнения судей Конституционного суда - настоящий протест внутри элиты, протест и этического, и профессионального свойства

Сергей Дубинин: Речь идет о коренной ломке всей экономической системы страныРуководство экономикой с помощью приказов в нашей стране уже потерпело крах; предлагают попробовать снова

От редакции: Умер вождь антизападного интернационалаПосмотрим, как будет развиваться теперь судьба зависимых от Венесуэлы левых режимов

Putin's attempt at political makeover makes Russian elite nervous
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One way to ensure that loyalty is to cut off their access to financial security in the West, Tatyana Stanovaya, head of the analysis department at the Center for Political Technologies here, wrote in an essay for the group's Web site. But that changes ...
Former Soviet dissident criticises Putin's regime in PraguePrague Daily Monitor

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An Evaluation of Clinical Trial Quality in Russia and Ukraine, new webinar ... (press release)
With patient recruitment rates up to twenty times faster than the West, the biopharmaceutical industry is embracing the undeniable benefits of conducting clinical trials in emerging markets such as Russia. In fact, 33% of all drugs approved by the FDA ...

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South Asian Link

Chavez gone, but anti-American allies remain 08.03.2013
Deutsche Welle
And due to the fact that Venezuela, even after the death of Chavez, will still be on a confrontational course with the US and the West, it will continue to look for weapons supplies from non-western countries. Russia already has its foot in the door ...
The West won't shed a tear for ChavezPravda
Hugo Chavez funeral draws US foes to
Hugo Chavez Revived Socialism In South America And Reserves A Place In ...South Asian Link

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Режиссера «процесса над Pussy Riot» объявили нелегальным мигрантом
... и хочет от искусства. Однако режиссер отмечает, что далеко не многие в России обрадовались оправдательному приговору: около 80 процентов населения осудило бы Pussy Riot, ведь в России, если дело доходит до оскорбления – явного или кажущегося - веры или народа, то это уже преступление ...

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Россия, как США и западные страны направили на церемонию дипломатическую делегацию. Нашу страну представляют председатель Совета Федерации России Валентина Матвиено, министр иностранных дел Сергей Лавров, глава государственной нефтяной компании «Роснефть» ...
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А.Арбатов: Угрозы реальные и мнимые. Военная сила в мировой политике начала XXI века
Подъем исламского радикализма по идее должен был бы объединить Запад, Россию и Китай. Однако в отличие от конца прошлого и начала нового столетия, ознаменованного терактами в Америке и Европе, а также коалиционной антитеррористической операцией в Афганистане, ...

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Christian Science Monitor

On International Women's Day, Russian women want change – not gifts
Christian Science Monitor
It's a kind of cross between Mother's Day and Valentine's Day in the West, with just the faintest hints of its early-Soviet-era aura of militant feminism thrown in. But several women who are active leaders in various fields say that this year they are ...
What do Russian women want on the 8th of March?The Voice of Russia

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