Daily Archives: April 27, 2010

April 30, 2010 — Contents

FRIDAY APRIL 30 CONTENTS

(1)  EDITORIAL:  The Toxin of Russian Racism

(2)  Russia’s Rampaging Racism

(3)  Yes! Ban those Russians!

(4)  Russia, land of “haves” and “stolen from”

(5)  Pasko and Illarionov

(6)  USA boots Russia out of Fed Cup

EDITORIAL: The Toxin of Russian Racism

EDITORIAL

The Toxin of Russian Racism

We’ve said many times before that the Russia teems with the most virulent and shameless racism imaginable, and the litany of dead, dark-skinned bodies is sure and certain proof of this undeniable fact (click the “racism” link in the “categories” section of our sidebar to read four years’ worth of our reporting on the subject, which may take you days to get through) .

But we’ve also always been careful to point out that, as utterly horrific as these killings are, there is a darker, more outrageous element to the racism found in Russia, namely that it is openly supported not just by the general population but by the government itself.  Russia is, quite simply, a nation of racists and they are proud of it.

Reporting from Moscow in a blog post we republish in today’s issue, journalist Julia Ioffe provides an example of what is happening in Russia on a daily basis from her own personal experience.  Ioffe, whose parents fled Russia when she was a child, stood on a subway platform and watched a screaming hoard of Russian skinheads chanting about purging all non-Slavic blood from Russia. She stood and watched as hundreds of ordinary Russians clapped and cheered their message: “Russia for Slavs!” (using the word for “Russian” in Russian that means “Slavs and nobody else”).

Everyone — everyone — who has spent time living on the real streets of Russia knows that the anecdote Ioffe is relating is anything but anecdotal.  It’s fact, it’s conventional wisdom, it’s the real Russia.

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Russia’s Rampaging Racism

Julia Ioffe reports from Moscow:

Crossing the underground transfer to the Paveletskaya stop on the circle line in the Moscow metro this morning, I found myself swallowed up by a bunch of singing, rowdy youths.

Decked out in red-and-white scarves, they were on their way to Luzhniki stadium for a soccer match where they would cheer for their team, Spartak — thus the red and white. (These, coincidentally, are also the colors of Nashi, the Hitlerjugend-ish Kremlin youth group.)

The kids were warming up in the metro, having warmed up, it seems, with a couple beers beforehand.

Holding their arms out in a V or clapping, the kids sang. And here’s what they sang:

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Yes, Ban those Russians!

Reuters reports:

A Senator on Monday asked Washington to cancel U.S. visa privileges for 60 Russian officials and others over the death in jail last year of a lawyer for what was once Russia’s top equity fund, Hermitage.

Senator Benjamin Cardin, a Maryland Democrat who chairs the human rights monitoring U.S. Helsinki Commission, asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to scrap visa privileges for those accused of ties to the death of Sergei Magnitsky.

Human rights activists have said Russian authorities subjected Magnitsky to conditions amounting to torture in a failed bid to force him to testify in their favor in a battle with Hermitage over tax fraud allegations.

“While there are many aspects of this case which are impossible to pursue here in the United States, one step we can take, however, is to deny the individuals involved in this crime and their immediate family members the privilege of visiting our country,” Cardin said in a letter to Clinton made public on Monday.

“The United States has a clear policy of denying entry to individuals involved in corruption, and it is imperative that the U.S. Department of State act promptly on this matter.”

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Russia, land of the “haves” and the “stolen-froms”

Vermont Public Radio reports:

In Novokuznetsk, an industrial city in Siberia, it seems like a normal April. Snow is melting. People have emerged from winter and are chatting in the town square. And, there is a corruption scandal — involving the mayor, his son and a $3 million housing scam.

“Everybody knows about it,” says Sofia Pinsker, a 22-year-old student. “And it’s not surprising.” Such is life in Russia. Citizens accept that to avoid a ticket for an illegal left turn, or to get a passport to travel abroad, it may require making a bribe. “It’s really easier to do something like that than to do something by law,” Pinsker says.

And Russians, she says, have a history of acceptance when it comes to their leaders.

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Pasko and Illarionov

Robert Amsterdam publishes a true dymanic duo, hero journalist Grigory Pasko and hero economist Andrei Illarionov (Если Вы хотите прочитать оригинал данной статьи на русском языке, нажмите сюда):

Journalist Grigory Pasko recently had the opportunity to sit down with Andrei Illarionov, former advisor to the President of the Russian Federation, and currently a Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity at the Cato Institute in Washington.

GRIGORY PASKO:  Andrei Nikolayevich, appearing before the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US House of Representatives in February of the year 2009, you said: “Today’s Russia is not a democratic country”… And further: “The members of the Corporation do share strong allegiance to their respective organizations, strict codes of conduct and of honor, basic principles of behavior, including among others the principle of mutual support to each other in any circumstances and the principle of omerta.” But is this not a characterization of a classical mafia? Can one fight with a mafia using democratic methods: honest elections, unbribable independent courts, free mass information media?

ANDREI ILLARIONOV:  A very good and complex question. But I will not give you an answer now. Inasmuch as we have to make several sub-points here. First: is this phenomenon a mafia? It has very many features that look like a mafia, that are close to a mafia. Nevertheless, this is not exactly a mafia. More precisely, this is some kind of a special mafia. A mafia of such a kind – a siloviki corporation, as we have, – belongs to the group of special siloviki structures that exist in different human societies. By the way, states as such ought to be included in this as well.

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Ouch: USA boots Russia out of Fed Cup

American Bethanie Mattek-Sands, jubilant in victory

Russia fielded a far stronger singles team against the United States in the semi-final match of the Fed Cup championships which was contested in Birmingham, Alabama last weekend. 

The US did not send one player ranked in the world’s top 30 in singles, while Russia sent world #7 Elena Dementieva.   The US sent only one player ranked in the top 100 in the world in singles, while all three of Russia’s players were ranked in the world’s top 80. 

The outcome, therefore, was a foregone conclusion.   

That’s right, the USA whipped Russia’s butt. 

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