WEDNESDAY JUNE 16 CONTENTS
(1) EDITORIAL: Oh Holy Putin!
(2) Putin Exposed and Humiliated
(3) Olympian Fraud in Sochi
(4) Russia: Sick and Ignorant Forever!
(5) Russia longs for the Soviet “Paradise”
(6) Annals of Shamapova
NOTE: LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld lets the venal and craven Barack Obama have it once again in her latest column on the mighty Pajamas Media blog, excoriating the U.S. leader for his manifest failure to confront neo-Soviet Russia. Closing in on 100 comments already, be sure to drop by and give B.O. (how aptly initialed!) a piece of your mind.
Oh come, all ye faithful!
Oh Holy Putin!
Our stomachs were turned last week by the revolting news that Russian children were being encouraged by the Kremlin to offer up Orthodox prayers of worship to their new god, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin. Here are the horrifying details:
Even as Prime Minister Vladimir Putin denied that a personality cult has grown around him, news broke Thursday that St. Petersburg children were being encouraged to pray that God bless Putin and shield him from “demoniacal temptation.” St. Petersburg’s Suvorov Military College presented printed Orthodox prayers to talented local children aged 8 to 14 who were invited to an International Children’s Day event at Tavrichesky Palace on June 1, Yelena Sakhno, who helped organize the event, said Thursday. The prayers were among the gifts tucked into goody bags distributed to the 150 children. “We didn’t consider the inclusion of Orthodox literature among the presents to be reprehensible,” Sakhno told The Moscow Times. “The prayer for the head of state is traditional in the canons of the church service,” she added. “The Prayer for the President,” first reported by Fontanka.ru, calls on God to “send Your Archangel Mikhail to the aid of Your servants Dmitry and Vladimir” and to “shatter” their enemies and save them from “demoniacal temptation.” The text echoes the Russian Orthodox Church’s “Prayer to Archangel Mikhail.”
Let’s be perfectly clear: The Putin regime is establishing an official state religion in Russia, and doing so for the most crass of political motives. It is ignoring the reality that Russia is rapidly becoming a Muslim nation and creating an oppressive, powder-keg scenario of religious exclusion totally contrary to the principles of the Russian Constitution solely so that the Kremlin can use religion (Russia’s current patriarch is a former KGB agent) to leverage its power and control.
Moscow Times editorial page editor Michael Bohm, writing for the paper:
When Yury Shevchuk, a rock musician and outspoken Kremlin critic, met with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin two weeks ago, it was truly a historic event. After all, we have waited 10 years for this precious moment — when Putin would finally go one-on-one with a real critic of his regime.
Indeed, most Putin-watchers — including many of his loyal supporters — have grown bored with the soft, self-censored questions from journalists or Putin’s highly staged call-in shows in which some of the more probing questions in years past have included:
1. “It is well-known that great people suffer from depression. Do you have depression?”
2. “Do you like going to the banya?”
3. “Do you use a cellular phone?”
4. “Is it true you promised to hang [Georgian President Mikheil] Saakashvili by one of his body parts?”
5. “Why does Russia’s national soccer team perform so poorly?”
6. “Why don’t the national television channels show gymnastics in the morning anymore?”
7. “How will you celebrate New Year’s Eve?”
8. “Are you romantic?”
9. “When will we see the first snowfall?”
10. “Do you let stupid questions get through on your program?”
Paul Goble reports:
Just as Moscow has often used the Soviet role in World War II as a universal moral solvent to justify or at least distract attention from whatever the Russian government has done, now Moscow appears to be invoking the threat of terrorism to the 2014 Sochi Olympics in order to distract attention from massive corruption there.
As many commentators have pointed out over the last several years, Sochi is hardly an ideal place to hold the Olympics given its proximity to the unsettled North Caucasus and the anger of many ethnic groups in that region about Moscow’s decision to destroy ecological and historical sites dear to them in order to stage that competition. But if in the past, Moscow officials have repeatedly stressed their ability to ensure security at those games, now the head of the FSB is saying that there is a definite terrorist threat. And while Aleksandr Bortnikov’s statement last week is almost certainly true, the timing of his remarks highlights what Moscow appears most concerned about – covering up corruption.
That is because over the last several weeks ever more evidence has come out that, as one Russian news service headlined its report today, “corruption is making the Sochi Olympics the most expensive in history,” a charge that could have the effect of leading more people to question the appropriateness of holding the games there.
Former Kremlin insider Vladimir Milov, writing in the Moscow Times:
On Saturday, Russia will celebrate Russia Day. The roots of this holiday go back to June 12, 1990, the day the Congress of People’s Deputies of the Russian Republic adopted the Declaration on State Sovereignty for Russia. It proclaimed the “sovereignty” of the Russian Republic within a liberalized Soviet Union during Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev’s perestroika program. Among other things, the declaration, which was signed by the chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the Russian Republic, Boris Yeltsin, stated that the laws of the Russian Republic took precedence over the legislation of the Soviet Union.
Back in June 1990, I never would have thought that on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the Declaration of State Sovereignty I would witness crowds of people — including young people — eulogizing the Soviet Union and shedding tears over the “fall of a great power.”
The idea of experiencing remorse over the collapse of the Soviet Union might seem crazy to those who still hold vivid memories of empty store shelves, food rationing coupons, medical clinics reserved for the elite, foreign currency stores called beryozki, rampant cronyism and special privileges for the bureaucratic elite to receive exclusive housing, jobs and education for their children.
Shamapova continues her "dominating" ways in Birmingham
When Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova barely managed to squeak past American Alison Riske in the semifinals of the WTA tour event in Birmingham England, it was breathlessly reported that she was “on course” to take the title for a third time. Our gal Shamapova stated: “I suppose I knew in my mind I would be back.”
Never mind that Riske was not ranked in the top 180 players in the world, yet pushed Sharapova to three sets. Never mind that before reaching the finals Shamapova was not called upon to defeat a single seeded player. In other words, never mind pesky little things like reality and facts. Sharapova was in full swagger. “I’m back, I’m back!” she chirped.
But then she had to deal with the nasty inconvenience of actually playing the finals match, this time against world #11 Li Na. Our gal Shamapova lost the first set and then was blown away in the second, managing to win only a pathetic single game.