Moscow Spring?

Quite often, Russian reality is best illuminated with a joke. A couple of journalists are quizzing a candidate: “Why do you want to get elected?” “Just look what is going on in the corridors of power: officials are awash in debauchery, theft, corruption!” “So you want to fight this?” “Get serious,” the candidate replies, “I […]

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Dima, Volodya and Alice

What exactly is a Russian liberal? Has this species ever been seen in the wild (by which I mean the Kremlin)? In her spot-on analysis of Russia’s ruling tandem in today’s Washington Post, Liliya Shevtsova highlights this question brilliantly: …the transformation of Medvedev into a symbol of reformist hopes has been Putin’s best trick so […]

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Etcetera

Russians are wearing less and will have to do with fewer mushrooms this year. President Medvedev is Russia’s Internet President (while PM Putin apparently does not even have a cellphone), but he does not appreciate it when his minions Tweet during meetings. Senior ranking spies in Russia earn more than the president. Prime Minister Putin […]

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Keep Reading, Dima

President Dmitry Medvedev says he likes the classics, but that, just recently he made a request for buying about 50 books authored by contemporary Russian writers over the past 5-7 years. “I have read some of them and I cannot say I have been excited,” he said to share his impressions. “By and large I […]

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Putin and Medvedev as Na’Vi

Avatar has become the largest grossing movie in Russian history. But, more interestingly, a spin-off photo morfing site (which seemed to be connected to McDonald’s Finland) allowed visitors to turn pictures of famous people into the blue Na’Vi. A Russian newspaper tried it with Medvedev and Putin. Here are the tinted results. First Putin: Then […]

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From Mikhail to Michael

Four years ago, in August 2005, then Senator Barack Obama was detained for three hours at a Siberian airport. Obama, with Senator Dick Lugar, was on a US delegation touring nuclear warhead storage and disposal sites. Russian border guards insisted on searching the delegation’s plane. The senators refused. The diplomatic standoff lasted three hours before […]

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