EDITORIAL: Secession in Kaliningrad and Vladivostok?

EDITORIAL

Secession in Kaliningrad and Vladivostok?

The indispensable Paul Goble reports that the residents of Kaliningrad, Russia are thinking thoughts of secession these days.

Kaliningrad presents a really fascinating paradox.  Compared to most regions of Russia, the residents of Kalingrad are rich. But compared to their neighbors Poland and Lithuania (the Kaliningrad region is not contiguous to Russia), they are dirt poor, as are the vast majority of all Russians.  And Kaliningraders don’t compare themselves to their remote and slovenly Russian brothers, but to their neighbors, so they’re hopping mad that the Kremlin has bungled their governance so badly and they are taking to the streets to make their displeasure very plain indeed.

According to Vladimir Pribylovsky, president of the Panorama Information and Research Center:  “It is perfectly obvious why: the governor is bad and the Kremlin runs our affairs badly as well.  The Kaliningraders want to live just like the Poles do.”

And, because of their proximity to the West and their isolation from Russia, it turns out that Kaliningraders are willing to stand up to the Putin regime in brazen acts of defiance that have rocked the Kremlin to its core.

According to Pribylovsky, the far-Eastern city of Vladivostok is similarly situated to Kaliningrad because of its isolation from the Kremlin, and this he says explains what Vladivostok, too, has been a hotbed of opposition activity.  He predicts that the two regions will make common cause and that we can expect to  see a whole new round of even more vigorous protest activity before 2010 is out.

Goble writes:

As far as Governor Georgy Boos is concerned, Pribylovsky suggested that he is neither especially bad nor especially good. Instead, his administration is about average, including in terms of corruption, and that if he were in charge of any oblast “which was not located next to Europe, he would be coping with his responsibility in a completely calm way.” Unfortunately for him, Pribylovsky continues, Kaliningrad is not one of those, but the problems Boos and Moscow are having now do not mean that he is going to be removed. He is Putin’s man and Putin as long as he has the power is not going to sack him, especially in the face of public pressure.

Putin may represent, then, a stubbornly clamped-on lid atop a boiling pot. Grigori Pasko points out how he is using the KGB to crack down on the Kaliningrad opposition leaders just as in Soviet times.  Holding the pressure on rather than releasing it, Putin may be setting up conditions for a massive social explosion the force of which could drive Kaliningrad into the waiting arms of Europe, and Vladivostok into the embrace of China.

It’s yet one more example of how the narrow-minded, thuglike policies of Putin have led Russia to the brink of a terrifying abyss.

72 responses to “EDITORIAL: Secession in Kaliningrad and Vladivostok?

  1. I lived in Kaliningrad in 1990s – it’s the hellhole.

    Every second young man is drug addict. Every second adult is alcoholic. This is literally so. Everything is soooo grey and dilapidated. Depression is in the air.

    The big problem with mass protests there is that it does not necessarily mean the will to become free citizens. It may well mean – come on, give us some pocket money and we will shud up.

    I can’t imagine, how people can live there in the first place. So, those who live there – I won’t bet on their characters very much. Maybe it sounds harsh, but it’s probably truth. Maybe there are several smart people there but not much more.

    Plus, you should remember that Kaliningrad was filled with Soviet citizens who went there for free apartments, etc. Not to work but to get freebies from the state.

    But it would be very funny if Russia’s collapse will start from there. However I doubt it, they will be given some pocket money and they will shut up.

    More likely collapse will start from Kavkaz, when oil prices finally go to their classic 30-40$ per barrel level. And then maybe Kaliningrad will have much more chances to follow their example.

  2. Saying a place in Russia is a hell hole is a non sequitor, everyplace is.

    Is it a hell hole compared to Chelyabinsk, that’s the question?

    • I haven’t been to Cheliabinsk but I think yea, not big difference there. However, Kaliningrad is really not very nice place. I mean St Peresburg, Moscow – much much more better. Many places in Russia are better than Kaliningrad. I meant hellhole even by Russian standards.

      • But the point is that Piter is a hell hole compared to Warsaw.

        It’s nice to have confirmation, though, of how badly the Kremlin has botched its management of Kaliningrad that it is as bad is radioactive Chelyabinsk. Presumably, the same can be said of Vladivostok.

    • That’s “non sequitur”. And secession is a bit of an extrapolation here; neither article mentions any such possibility. It suggests the citizens of these cities want a better standard of living. Of course, when you just make up what people are thinking and what it might mean, I guess the sky’s the limit.

      Vladivostok is probably every bit as bad; I’m not familiar with Kaliningrad, but my wife is from Dalnegorsk, some 500 km northeast of Valadivostok, and I’ve been there many times. In a year when Vladivostok suffered first from floods and widespread power outages, followed by drought and a prolonged garbage strike by city workers, Governor Sergey Darkin lived in a walled compound with its own generators, and seemed oblivious to the citizenry’s plight. I’ve seen him, sweeping up to the bank in a chauffeur-driven SUV with lots of muscle for security, because he had a lot of enemies who would kill him without blinking, if they could. The mayor was a convicted criminal, although I believe he got a suspended sentence. A car bomb blew up in the parking lot of the 5-star Hyundai Hotel a day after my wife had been there, dropping off a courier package to DHL, who had their office on a subfloor of the hotel. I remember that as soon as we got up in the morning (that year, anyway, I guess it would have been 2002) we would have to fill everything that would hold water, because the water would be turned off around 09:00 and wouldn’t come back on again until nearly suppertime. They don’t call it the Wild, Wild East for nothing. And yes, the municipal government was completely to blame, because the area is rich in natural resources and could do much better.

  3. “waiting arms of Europe”

    Hhahaha. Come on, Europe, do you need this “beautiful” region? Do you know how much it will cost to free it from second world war mines. How will you integrate its current “citizens”. Thousands of drug addicts, alcoholics and crazies of all types.
    For example, in the regional town named Baltiysk I met a child who was “maugli” child raised by dogs. And it was not the only one there. Many other children start drinking and sometimes killing from very early age. Their parents are alcoholics, state will only make their lifes worse. Do you know how to deal with them?
    I know you are kind people but will you pay for all this? Will you give them EU citizenship so that they could walk your streets?

    • Unlike Russians, Europeans are quite generous and take in refugees from many ruined places in the world, including darkest Africa, with the hope of assimilating and improving. America does the same. When such people go to Russia, however, they’re usually murdered.

      You ought to visit New York City some day and see the inscription on Lady Liberty about “wretched refuse.” Today that country dominates Russia in every aspect of life, and asks for more of the world’s “refuse.” Solzhenitsyn was once considered so by Russians.

      • I just try to say that the process of Kaliningrad joining Europe may be not as fast as many would wish. Of couse it can be absorbed. But it’s not very easy and fast process even with Europe’s best intentions, I guess. I see many reasons why Kaliningrad should separate from Russia but I also see many reasons why Europe will be scared of this intention.
        What is the likely scenario in case if Kaliningrad will really become “hot spot” for politics? I don’t know. Maybe if someone could write here, it could be interesting discussion. I doubt that Kremlin will send troops there like in Chechnia or could it? And the most crucial question – what will happen when oil will go down? Will it makes things much more worse or better? It seems that Russia may well repeat 21 century in the same bloody way as 20th or even worse (nuclear weapons).

      • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_New_Colossus

        I read it and it is beautiful.

        However, you also have a wall with Mexico, don’t you? I don’t mean to sound rude, but even USA can’t be so idealistic in reality as you could wish for. I really don’t see any good political solutions if Russia will start to collapse. I’m afraid Obama and Europeans don’t see as well.

        Probably this is the reason why it is so frustrating for us to see how Obam and other politicians behave towards Russia.

        • Alex, thank you very much for your comments. I have been fascinated by Kaliningrad all my life. Such a sad but fascinating history.

          Yes, we Americans are very neurotic about Mexico, and our lofty ideals of welcoming immigrants suddenly become “complicated” when dealing with our southern neighbor. But one important fact is that Mexico is a very large country with more than one hundred million people, equal to a third of America’s population. Ignorantly or not, many Americans worry about being “overwhelmed” by Mexicans. I think this is over-simplistic, but that’s not the point.

          My point is that Kaliningrad oblast is a tiny spot of land with barely one million people and already surrounded by EU territory. Poor or not, such a small entity could be integrated with relative ease. If the EU could absorb 30 million Romanians and Bulgarians without buckling under that price tag, K’grad would be manageable.

          Another huge difference with the US/Mexico situation is history. Put bluntly, most of the southwestern USA is land stolen from Mexico in the early 1800s, and many Americans worry about another border change. (Again, this is even sillier — Mexicans risking their lives escaping the poverty and corruption of their homeland, just so they can force that same inept mismanagement over their new homes? Ok, whatever. That’s a whole other discussion.)

          But again, the exact opposite is at work with K’grad. Any German government — left, right, whatever — would sign a blank check for developmental aid to an EU-bound K’grad. The bribe mentality you mentioned in the local population may work to Moscow’s disadvantage. Besides sentimental attachment to its former territory, Germany will do anything to look altruistic. It would be an ironic situation — Germans don’t want such a run-down territory back, and yet they will need to PROVE they don’t want it back. Solution: billions in aid for “those poor miserable Russians” living there (and, more cynically, to keep them from leaving K’grad in droves for opportunities in wealthier parts of the EU).

          It’s still premature to anticipate any of this, but the idea must be taken seriously at least.

      • Well Kim, I am more with Alex on this. It us Americans who have that beautiful Emma Lazarus’s poem on the Lady Liberty monument. Europeans don’t. And whatever refugees they do accept, it’s mostly due to a guilt associated with their colonial past. I doubt very much they would extend the same hospitality to Kaliningraders.

        Just my thoughts, please don’t kill me if you disagree.

  4. Obama has not his citizens welfare at heart. I remember reading his “precis” when he wanted to enter America’s parliament. He approached the black power broker and said to him, while thumping his right fist into his left open palm, “I need POW ER”!

    When I read that I thought “God help America, should this jerk ever attain the top position – i.e. Presidency – in the U.S. of A.”

    • Totally fabricated. The United States is a Constitutional Republic, and does not have a parliamentary system. Neither the Senate nor the House of Representatives has ever had anything like the “black power broker” you describe. If you were speaking of the Black Panther movement (whose slogan was “Black Power”), they have not been active since the early 1970’s; at that time, Barack Obama would have been less than 10 years old. A little young for writing a “precis” to enter parliament.

      Try not to be more of a crackpot than nature intended.

      • Yes, the story does not ring true to me either. Somebody deceived Bohdan. Barack Obama did get elected to the Senate, in 2004 I think, but I never heard of any black power brokers in this context.

        Perhaps, somebody meant Jesse Jackson from Obama’s home state, who is still powerful and can be called such a broker, but his role in Obama’s election to the Senate is unclear

      • OK so I used the English terms instead of your “God Damn” American ones, so big deal. So what.

        For your information I got this information out of either “Time” or “Readers Digest”, and I doubt very much that they would have made the story up, especially RD.

        Maybe the article was never printed in your USA, but it certainly was here in Australia.

        The article definitely did not mention the Black Panther movement, so there Mark. Besides I am well aware that they were a Black power force in America many decades ago.

        And don’t miss quote me Mark I never mentioned that Obama wrote the precis. The author writing the story about Obama did, as too did he also make the comment that Obama had to ask, his future wife to be, Michelle, several times to go out to dinner with him, before she finally accepted.

        Hence if I’m guilty of anything in writing the above, then it is that I did not buy that publication with its article to use as a referral at a later date! But you gentlemen cannot convince me otherwise, as I read the article and have reproduced it to the best of my memory.

        Or as you Yanks say in court, “the whole truth, and nothing but the whole truth, so help me God.”

        • Bohdan wrote: “For your information I got this information out of either “Time” or “Readers Digest”

          If this is not yet another lie and you indeed got this accusation against Obama from a major US magazine like Time or Readers Digest – you better provide the link and the exact quote, or else LR must honor her own rules and ban you for making unsubstantiated (and highly offensive) slanderous claims against public figures.

          Luckily for you, all such articles are available on the Web. So if you are not lying again – you will have no problem finding citations. Of course, if you are lying – you have a problem.

          To help you, here are Google search results for ““I need power” Obama“:

          http://www.google.com/search?q=%E2%80%9CI+need+power%E2%80%9D+obama

          Do any of them support your claim?

        • Bohdan, Bohdan….. I’ve been trying to put my finger on just what it is I like so much about you, and I think it must be your engaging sense of humour.

          I’m not an American, and we do have a parliamentary system. And sorry, but you did in fact say you “read his precis” – if it’s not too much effort, scroll back up to your own post, and you’ll see. Where you got the impression that getting into the “American parliament” is just a matter of filling out an application, I can’t imagine – you have to be elected, and nothing like a precis is required.

          As far as the notion that something derogatory about Barack Obama could be published in Rupert Murdoch’s homeland without a sniff of it being published in the U.S.; …well, that’s just another example of the quirky sense of humour I mentioned earlier. Fox News would be all over it like Rush Limbaugh on a baked ham.

          So, to sum up – one, the situation you describe never occurred outside your narrow and substandard skull, two, a politician saying he needed power would be about as unusual as a skier saying he needed snow, and three, unless Barack Obama has moved to Vladivostok or Kaliningrad, and is currently whipping his new city’s citizens into a frenzy of jealously against Poland or Lithuania, he has absolutely nothing to do with the subject.

          • Obama and Putin, friends to the end. The social system promoted Obama’s (Putins) rise to president. Replace “Chicago” with “Kaliningrad”. Replace “Kremlin” with “City Hall”. Then you will have a true picture of a Bastard Breeding Experiment in Kaliningrad on top of the EU.

            “Blacks had more political power in Chicago than ever before, yet that power had no impact on the tidal wave of dysfunction that was sweeping through the largest black community in the United States. Chicago had just elected Harold Washington, the city’s first black mayor; the heads of Chicago’s school system and public housing were black, as were most of their employees; black power broker Emil Jones, Jr. represented the South Side in the Illinois State Senate; Jesse Jackson would launch his 1984 presidential campaign from Chicago. The notion that blacks were disenfranchised struck even some of Obama’s potential organizers as ludicrous. “Why we need to be protesting and carrying on at our own people?” a prominent South Side minister asked Obama soon after he arrived in Chicago. “Anybody sitting around this table got a direct line to City Hall.”

            Pace Alinsky, such political clout could not stop black Chicago’s social breakdown. Crime was exploding. Gangs ran the housing projects—their reign of thuggery aided by ACLU lawsuits, which had stripped the housing authority of its right to screen tenants.”

            http://frontpagemag.com/2010/01/19/chicago%E2%80%99s-real-crime-story/

            Kaliningrad, Transdniestr, Chechnya, Ossetia etc. Frozen Conflicts and Future Slums are unmanageable. Just as Putin is planning on nuclear missiles in Kaliningrad, so the local degenerates could man them?
            Kaliningrad to threaten Poland first, not a problem for Germany which gave it up.

            • I have to admire your determination; you don’t simply have issues, you have a whole subscription. Once again, neither Putin or Obama are residents of Kaliningrad or Vladivostok – consequently, you are pounding away on a point that has nothing to do with the subject. Peripherally mentioning “Putin” and “Kaliningrad”, and then dedicating 99.9% of your narrative to Obama is a nice try, but in lockstep with your personal trend, your piehole is busily writing cheques your intellect cannot cash. I’m sure you won’t be banned, probably not even warned, because you are such a loyal sycophant and say all the right vituperative things about Russians, but you might notice that your birthday passes unremarked this year.

              I learned this when Kim Zigfeld appeared to me last night in a dream. She said (cue fade-in music & faraway voice)…Mark…..Mark….tell that foolish pridurak Georg to stop besmirching my clearly-defined and sacred comment code with his endless off-topic blathering and bitter ramblings. Sell short on AT&T, and don’t forget to pick up milk on the way home……(cue fade-out music…..*Pop* What? Where am I? Did I say anything embarrassing?

              Seriously, I knew it was a dream right away, because I don’t have any AT&T stock.

              • Mark, says he dreams about Kim Zigfeld, that is good!

                BIISK, Russia — About 200 demonstrators gathered in the central Russian city of Biisk to protest price hikes and a perceived “monopolization of power,” RFE/RL’s Russian Service reports.

                The March 11 rally — the second protest against rising prices in as many days — was organized by local Communist Party members and workers at military-industrial facilities.

                Protesters demanded that local authorities establish thorough control over the quality and cost of utilities in Biisk, a city of some 230,000 people in the Altai Krai.

                They also put forward political demands. Protesters held banners reading “United Russia is the Party of Cheating, Responsible for the Crisis” and “Putin’s Government Should Resign!”

                Geez, Mark how can a Neo Bolshevik like you get any sleep at all?

  5. sascha_hero Germany

    one day soon Königsberg will be under german control again! i swear it as a German

    • Hitler said the same thing about Sudetenland, Lorraine, Alsace, Memel/Klaipeda and Danzig/Gdansk etc, but it didn’t work out too well for him, did it?

      Dream on.

  6. Königsberg was a very beautiful city before RuSSians came. Those vodka-drinking fascists have destroyed many beautiful, historical cities like Königsberg and Viipuri. Königsberg and Viipuri must be liberated from those bloody RuSSian barbarians.

    • Nazi Germany and Finland tried in 1941-44 but failed, didn’t you?

      • RuSSian barbarians attacked in 1939 (as well as in 1700, 1713, 1756, 1808, 1918 and 1941) and destroyed and stole Karelia, raped and murdered its civilians -mostly women and children-, bombed Finnish towns and wanted to kill the Finns – do we need to continue ? Königsberg was and is a German city, Viipuri is Finnish. No doubt about that.

        The worst barbarians, rapers and murderers, in the world are RuSSians and have always been. Nazi Germany was like a Sunday school comparing to the uSSr and RuSSia anno 2010.

        • Aha, so the Nazi Germany and the Holocaust were not nearly as bad as “RuSSia anno 2010”? Is that what they teach you about Nazi crimes and the Holocaust in Finland?

          • Nazi Germany protected Eastern Europe from RuSSian barbarians, they didn’t kill anybody in Finland but RuSSians killed civilians, stole and destroyed homes, bombed civilian targets like hospitals and kindergardens in Finland. The same happened in 1941, 1939, 1808, 1756, 1743, 1713, 1700 and so many times before the 18th century. RuSSians have killed millions of Finns, Germans none.

            RuSSia hasn’t changed at all since that. We know about Czechnya and Georgia 2008. The worst barbarians, rapers and murderers, in the world are RuSSians. Are you human ?

            Btw. today Germany is one of the most prosperous country in the world, RuSSia is one of the poorest, the most corrupted, fascist country.

          • Ari Virtanen wrote: “Nazi Germany protected Eastern Europe from RuSSian barbarians.

            Nazi Germany exterminated 6 million Jews like myself.

            “Are you human ?”

            Yes, despite what you were taught, we, Jews, are human. But you, Nazis, aren’t.

            • The Finns didn’t kill any jews. In fact, some jews fought with the Finns against RuSSian barbarians. If you didn’t know that you probably are not jew, you are a very typical RuSSian vodka-drinking idiot.

              • Perkele, oletko ylpeä ollessasi suomalainen?

              • That is correct Ari, after WW2 even the Soviets admitted that Finland took no part in the holocaust.

                Try again eleutherios/Arthur/Phobophobe/Ostap Bender etc.

              • The Finns helped Nazi Germany starve over a million Russian civilians to death in Leningrad, where people boiled shoe leather to make an edible jelly and scraped wallpaper off the walls so they could eat the glue – they ate the dirt from under a bombed sugar factory that burned to the ground. After the war, the Finnish president was sentenced to prison for war crimes.

                You must be very proud.

                • Mark, hello there.

                  I´ve read some of your comments in this funny blog and i have to say i agree with you 100% on almost everything you´ve said. Congrats man!

                  But just one question: you are not trying to have a serious discussion with these nerds are you?

                  • Hey, Billy, what’s up? Thanks for the support. Oddly enough, I stumbled on this blog from a google search for “Sochi 2014 souvenirs”; I was looking for a gift for my wife, who is Russian.

                    I was intrigued by the alleged mission statement of supporting Russia in its effort to become a prosperous, democratic, responsible world-community member, in stark contrast to the bilious hatred of everything Russian expressed in the editorials. Even in advance of what they must have known could turn into an explosively unpopular war, the Bush administration pursued a fairly comprehensive hearts-and-minds campaign in Iraq following the military victory. You could argue if it was well planned or executed , but they plainly understood the principle that you will not be an effective partner if you make everyone hate you. This blog makes no effort to build support or agreement with anyone except favoured dissidents and Russians who are willing to condemn their own country. If an American did that, he couldn’t walk out to get his mail without his neighbours spitting on him and calling him a traitor, but for some reason Americans idolize citizens of other countries who do it.

                    Anyway, my wife is proud of her country, and I’ve always been well-treated there by my in-laws and everyone I met. There’s no arguing that Russia has serious problems, but I don’t agree with the sweeping characterization of Russians as evil, immoral and duplicitous. To that extent, I’m serious.

                • Mark,

                  See how they talk about drug addicts, alcoholics, and all sorts of train-wrecks that allegedly inhabit Kaliningrad…i´d ask the wimps who run this blog, how many drug addicts can we find in the U.S.A.? Isn´t the USA, by long odds, the biggest drug market on planet earth?

                  Also how many gang members inhabit many of the large cities of the USA? 1 million? 2 million maybe?

                  That´s how they hanlde this blog with their over-the-top, superlative “editorials” to depict this branch of hell where Lucifer himself and all the legions of Fallen Angels decided to establish themselves and rule the land.

                  Wrecked economy, wrecked politics and politicians, infinite corruption, virulent racism, decaying population, vice, blah, blah, blah…hmmm sounds like a country located between Canada and Mexico.

                  In the ranch where i was born they use to say: “You see the straw on others eyes but fail to see the beam in yours”.

                  LOL!

            • Actually eleutherios, the Russians killed just as many Jews as the Nazi’s.

              They just did in Gulags by working people to death or shooting them rather than with gas.

              Besides, as so many Russian posters here point out, Jews are not Russians, look mat what they say about Yagoda.

              • Yagoda (Enon Gershen Ieguda) was a jew.
                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genrikh_Yagoda

              • Andrew wrote: “Actually, the Russians killed just as many Jews as the Nazi’s.They just did in Gulags

                Please provide evidence and citations – or be banned by LR.

                As I recall, the total number of Jews in the USSR was less than 3 million, and only a small fraction of them died in Gulags.

                Clearly, the Nazis killed orders of magnitude more Jews than the “Russians” did.

                Please provide the numbers of Jews killed by both countries – or be banned by LR.

  7. Nobody is safe from the indiscriminate terror of the Police and nothing changes in pesthole Moskovia. Not even an elderly piano player minding his own business. Nobody is safe!

    Beloglazov was on his way home from a nearby store. He was approached by an officer, who demanded to see his identification, which Beloglazov did not have. Law obliges all Russians to carry identification document known as internal passport with a special stamp specifying place of residence. Allegedly, the officer swore at the professor, pushed him down and proceeded to beat him, while shouting obscenities at him.

    “As he was beating me, “Beloglazov told his lawyer, “He kept saying no [Interior Minister Rashid] Nurgaliev was going to save me.”

    The pianist was held at a local police station for over two hours, where he says he was robbed of his cell phone and petty cash. Before releasing him, the police officers warned Beloglazov not to tell anyone about the beating, or they would kill him.

    Beloglazov later went to another police station, where his complaint was rejected. He then proceeded to file a complaint with the local Prosecutor’s office…

    http://www.mn.ru/news/20100209/55410543.html

    • Nobody is safe from the indiscriminate terror of the Police and nothing changes in pesthole Ukraine.

      https://www.irr.org.uk/cgi-bin/news/open.pl?id=5641

      Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

      • When it happens 1 time per 100.000 population, this is one story. When it happens regularly and now it happens very very regularly in Russia, that;s another story. I was barely killed 2 years ago when visited Russia by “policeman”. They stopped my car and pointed their gun to my heart, directly there. Then accused me of disorder, well, knowing Russia, I gave them 600 rubles and they went away.
        It happens every f##n day there many times. Where do you live, Mark? Do you like that?
        Maybe you should address your anger to authorities instead of this blog?
        A started talking about drug addicts and alcoholics in this theme, by the way. I mentioned it to show the state in which millions and millions of Russians live. Maybe not you, maybe not your wife, but millions and millions. Again, there is maybe 1 million drug addicts in USA, but in Russia there are more than 10 millions now!
        So, Mark, ORT and RTS are much more comfortable than this place, aren’t they? Don’t worry, you still can watch them, anytime…

        • Not RTS, but RTS of cause. I hope you did not invest your money in RTS…it crushed after war in Georgia, not because of the crisis, by the way. Say thank you to your politicians, who represent you, Mark.

        • I’m afraid I don’t know what you’re talking about. Are those television channels? We just recently got RTV1, which is (as far as I know) the only Russian -language cable channel available in Canada. It’s not great; it’s a U.S. mirror, and most of the news programs are World News from a U.S. perspective, while some of the programs are dubbed from English. Better than nothing, I suppose.

  8. Mark and others like you – can you tell me how you and your state help drug addicts and alcoholics? I know that in USA they can help a lot.

    A also know that now it is extremely hard for charity organizations to operate in Russia. Red Cross has big difficulties to help heroin addicts and AIDS patients. They are bullied by authorities. But they are reluctant to make it public because then they will be closed completely.

    This is the difference.

    And it leads to the horrible statistic. Whatever problem Russian population has can be found somewhere in the West. The only difference is that to get numbers of of people who suffer in Russia from it, you must multiply it at least by 10, or 50 regarding proportion of population. If in USA 1 addict per 1000, in Russia at least 10 or probably 50.

    Why this happens? Because you suck to the Kremlin. This blog is extremely funny because it’s the only place where free people talk to slaves. Quite unique…

    • Well, I’d love to reply, but each time I submit my comment I get a message that says, “duplicate comment detected, it looks like you already said that”, although nothing appears.

  9. I think the Russian state will have to pump billions of dollars into Kaliningrad, there is obvious dissatisfaction amongst the inhabitants, they witnessed the largest anti government protest in many years with over 10,000 taking to the streets in an unauthorised demonstration,
    I have not visited this place, but by the descriptions given by those on this blog who have lived there it sounds pretty horrendous,

    In my opinion there are two main problems, (1) with the current economic conditions and with Russia already struggling to meet its budget commitments I doubt the funds needed to stabilise the region are available, (2) Kaliningrad is not directly connected to Russia it is an enclave wedged between Poland and Lithuania, both these countries have been full members of the EU since 2004, and are supported by some of the worlds most prosperous nations there citizens are free to travel and work in these rich countries, Poland is becoming a central European power house, please note they did not even go into recession during the recent crisis,

    The people of Kaliningrad can see their neighbours progressing and developing and this process will continue and the gulf of prosperity will become ever wider and this will create even more tension.

    This is Russian territory, the EU will try to keep out of this problem, taking on another “basket case” would not be welcomed, and the appetite for greater enlargement is not there at the moment.

    • Yes, R John, sounds quite probable. I’m afraid Kalinigraders may be worst hit as the result. EU does not really need them at the moment. Russia won’t allow to help them. And won’t allow for them to separate. The tention may go to North Kavkaz level? These situations is what makes Russia such a bad place to invest and to plan anything. How can it end? With the worst catastrophe of 21 century?

      When 1917 happened, many said that the main revolutinary was the last Tsar himself. It was a common joke, because, as people said, the tsar did everything for the revolution to happen.

      What Putin is doing now?

      I’m afraid he is (probably not deliverately but it does not matter) prepare the ground for even nastier regime – ultra left, fascist, call it as you wish, but it won’t be fun…

  10. It’s possible that the residents of Koenigsberg would like to secede and join Germany or Poland, but the question is whether Germany or Poland would take them. I don’t think any European country would be interested in a territory with over a million Russians. The sad truth is that Koenigsberg is like a lot of other occupied European cities: once Russians and Ukrainians colonize a city, they invariably turn it into a dump. It’s the same situation in Viipuri/Viborg, Lwow, Cernauti, Ungvar etc.

    • What did your brethren improve in this world, stinky Roma?

    • A. You are the son of a dog. Speak for Yourself and your shiftless ex-Roman Prison Colony of a fly infested country. Romania known for what? Dracula?Vampirism today still believed, and practiced in funerals by your ilk. No way can you use Maskali in the same sentence with a great and historic European country by a Romanian Nazi, and Nazi wanabes like yourself.

      Romanian, tales of vampiric entities were also found among the ancient Romans and the Romanized inhabitants of eastern Europe, Romanians (known as Vlachs in historical context). Romania is surrounded by Slavic countries, so it is not surprising that Romanian and Slavic vampires are similar. I wonder where that tradition began?

      In Romanian lore, the names for an undead vampire include:

      * Strigoi (plural: Strigoi)
      * Moroi (plural: Moroii)
      * Varcolac (plural: Varcolaci)
      * Pricolic (plural: Pricolici)

      All six of these names can be used to mean an undead vampire who periodically leaves his grave to prey upon the living and returns to his grave to rest. But each term also has a special meaning… http://vampires.monstrous.com/romanian_vampires.htm

      None of this Impaling the Dead stuff was even mentioned by any Ukrainian I know.
      Ukrainians have been able feed all of Europe with their labors and are an asset wherever they go. “The breadbasket of Europe. ” Lviv is a modern and thriving bastion of European Charm. Unlike your bloodletting Sewer of Europe with a weird Romance Language so out of place. Romanians like you are known thieves and whore mongers. @A, particularly the way you justify your county in liberating your neighbors and killing off their intelligentsia.

      Today Ukraine is trapped next to Moskovia but don’t worry RaSSiya will come for you next. Obama and your Nazi Ally Germany will not care. No one will come to save you.

      • “The breadbasket of Europe. ”

        Did you forget about the Holodomor? Ukrainians always starved when russian welfare stopped for some reason.
        Ukrainians need to learn the value of the hard work to be able to finally feed themselves before they become the ‘breadbasket’.

      • I heard Ukrainians ate all the ‘lyrnics’ during the Holodomor. Do you know the story?

      • Oh, come on!!! Now we’re talking vabout vampires??

        I can see why you spend all your time on this blog – it’s because whenever you leave your basement, the doctors try to wrestle you into one of those jackets that have only one sleeve.

        Even a good footsoldier of centralized hatred like yourself cannot remain immune forever, and your previous comment violates practically every posted comment rule – it is off-topic, deliberately racist and includes personal attacks.

  11. There’s no gas, no oil, no lumber in Kaliningrad.
    Do the nice people in Germany and Poland want yet another strip of the Baltic sandy beach? Do they really want another failed recipient of IMF and Scandinavian banks?
    La_Russophobia might cost them a dear penny.
    The best choice as I see it – let the US budget and the Fed printing press feed 1.000.000 of Kalingrad residents in the name of democracy, humanity, anti-Russian sentiments or whatever you might think of. Hopefully they are not that crazy on both sides of the Atlantic.

    P.S.
    Last November paid a short visit to Riga – no prosperity in sight!

    • You’re not quite right.
      Notable deposits of oil were found in Kaliningrad oblast’ sea. And the development was started.

      And you probably didn’t hear about the $2.5 bln nuclear power plant beeing built there. I think all that noise is actually about that.

      Otherwise right, ‘kaliningradians’ have hopeless crapholes like Lithuania and Latvia next to them to see what the EU has to offer.

  12. Alex makes the following point,
    What Putin is doing now?
    I’m afraid he is (probably not deliberately but it does not matter) prepare the ground for even nastier regime – ultra left, fascist, call it as you wish, but it won’t be fun.

    Russia has half of the world’s neo Nazis between 50 to 70 thousand fully paid up members of organizations like the party of national socialists, So Alexis point is disturbing, but has a sinister ring of truth about it.

  13. RV,

    I’d like to remind you about one promise you made. I’m still waiting.

  14. COHEN: Free Khodorkovsky
    Russia’s capitalist future is in the balance

    Nice article in Washington Times.
    Thank you, USA, for free press!

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/mar/10/free-khodorkovsky-84312118/

    • Hehe.
      Mr. Cohen only asks to ‘pardon’ mr. Khodorkovsky as the evidences are clear that he’s a criminal. He’s a thief, a liar and a murderer.
      And i do hope we’re not going to need his ‘talents’ and ‘programs’ anymore.

  15. There is no such thing as kaliningrad.

    There is Königsberg!

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  17. In Russian “King” is “Korol'”, so it owuld make sense to at least rename it to KOROLEV or KOROLEVGRAD.

  18. If “burgs” exist in Russia (Petersburg, Orenburg) then another “burg” or “berg” can easily be renamed. Thus these are my proposals to rename the outdated name of KALININGRAD: Korolev, Korolevgrad, Koenigsberg, Kyonigsburg, Kralevburg, Kantograd, Sambiaville, Semba, Samburg, Zemburg, or give it the original Prusian native name of Twangste or Tuwangste.

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