While Russia burned, Putin Sang

A modern Russian fire truck rushing down a modern Russian road. courtesy of the New York Times

“Why the [expletive] do we need an innovation center in Skolkovo if we don’t have common firefighting vehicles?”

– Russian blogger top_lap

Hero journalist Yulia Latynina, writing in the Moscow Times:

Since the first wildfires started a month ago, 125,000 hectares of Russia’s forest have been destroyed in 17 regions, and 40 people have died.

Russia’s statistics on casualties from fires have always differed drastically from those in the West. For example, four firefighters died during wildfires in Washington state in 2001. Nine firefighters died in Colorado in 2002. Eleven firefighters died during Spain’s fires of 2005. Only one firefighter has died during this summer’s fires in Russia.

In developed countries, citizens don’t perish in fires. Firefighters perish. In Russia, it is directly the opposite, and there is a very good reason for this. In so many cases, there are no firefighters to put out the fires. Take, for example, the village of Verkhnyaya Vereya in the Nizhny Novgorod region, where all of its 341 houses burned to the ground and seven people died. There was no fire station in the village, and the two firefighting vehicles on watch drove the other way when they were called to duty.

People don’t die this way in Europe or the United States. This is how people die in Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin visited Verkhnyaya Vereya. While wearing a neatly pressed button-down shirt, he promised to severely punish bureaucrats who did not properly fight the fires. In reality, there is really only one bureaucrat who is responsible for this tragedy — Putin himself. After all, it was Putin who signed the Forest Code in 2007. The code placed the responsibility for defending forestlands on those who had the rights to use them. What an ingenious idea. This means that the Forest Code allows the Khimki forest to be “protected” by those who are now cutting it down.

There were two main groups who lobbied Putin to pass the Forest Code: paper mill owners — one of the biggest being Oleg Deripaska — and real estate developers.

Independent analysts and environmentalists heavily criticized the Forest Code. They predicted several years ago that the code would inevitably result in an increase in wildfires. Even the most loyal United Russia members from heavily forested regions opposed the code, but it was shoved through the State Duma under strong pressure from Putin’s presidential administration.

Although Russia has been burning for a month, the army was ordered to join the firefighting battle only several days ago. Why was the army not called up three weeks ago? Because there is no fundamental system of controlling and managing the country. Putin decides everything in Russia, and he was too busy with other things during the first three weeks of the fires — for example, doing photo ops with bikers in Crimea or singing songs with the 10 spies who recently returned from captivity in U.S. detention centers.

In the modern world, there are no natural disasters but only social ones. For example, the number of victims in an earthquake depends less on its magnitude than on how effectively the state responds to the disaster. The Haiti earthquake is a case in point. And what is true for an earthquake is doubly true for forest fires.

In 2008, there were 200,386 fires in which 15,165 people died in Russia. In the United States for the same time period, there were 1,451,000 fires in which 3,320 people died. Here are the conclusions that can be drawn from these statistics: First, 99 percent of all fires in Russia are not registered. Second, the number of deaths from fires per 1,000 people is 10 times higher in Russia than in the United States.

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79 responses to “While Russia burned, Putin Sang

  1. great article—-and on tv these questions won’t be asked or debated—so most russians won’t be made aware of these issues

  2. Latynina, just like LaRussophobe, thrives on lies.
    In 2009:

    The death toll from bushfires in southeastern Australia has risen to 210, police in the state of Victoria said Tuesday.

    Victoria Police said they are still working to identify all the victims of the fires that have raged since early this month.

    At least 2,029 homes have been destroyed in the blazes, according to Australian news outlets that quoted Bruce Esplin, the emergency services coordinator for Victoria. That is an increase from the previous estimate of 1,800.

    Seven fires were burning as of late Tuesday, the Country Fire Authority said, and several still posed a threat to residents

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/02/24/australia.toll/index.html

    Conclusion: given enough fire, people die. But, truth and reason has never been the hallmark of hateful people.

    • What lies makhalka?

      In Australia there was public outrage and a government inquiry into the deaths, to find out why the tragedy happened, and to ensure it never happened again.

      In Russia nothing will change, because of vermin such as yourself.

      • Well, vermin like yourself, or LR, or Latynina deliberately ignore the fact that in Australia, hundreds died in wildfires. Instead, vermin like yourself claims that only happens in places like Russia or 3rd world nations.

        Got it?

        The point is: when there is a big drought, and when fires start, people die. Regardless of place.

        But, vermin as yourself cannot help laughing and cheering when terrible things happen to people you hate.

        • Now listen vermin, Russian fools such as yourself are much more likely to die in fires because you and your government are incompetent, brainless idiots who actually seem to enjoy inflicting misery on your neighbors and yourselves through your support of corrupt strongmen like Putin.

          BTW, I have no sympathy for you Russian scum suffering these forest fires after RuSSian military units deliberately fire bombed Georgian national parks such as the Borjomi state forest in 2008, and threatened to shoot down Turkish and Azeri fire fighting planes that were flying in to assist in fighting the fires.

          Also note that the Russian fire bombing of the national parks and forests in Georgia occurred after the signing of the ceasefire.

          I suggest that the current fires in Russia are divine retribution.

          • Glad you are no longer holding back. Only a dead Russian is a good Russian.

            To rejoice in the suffering of others is, of course, the hallmark of human vermin. To ‘have no sympathy’ when people who did you no harm (the Russians who were engaged in Georgia are not the same individuals who are now dying in the fires) is the hallmark of thy psychopaths.

            But, that those who write for LR, and support her agenda, are psychopaths is quite self-evident. Glad you confirmed it.

            • @the Russians who were engaged in Georgia are not the same individuals who are now dying in the fires

              Maybe, but an air base also burned down.

              http://rt.com/Top_News/2010-08-03/fires-destroy-200-aircraft.html

              “As many as 200″ military aircraft bye-bye (officially).

            • Well, the Russian people certainly supported their governments ethnic cleansing of Georgian civilians from the conflict zone, just as they support the massacre of civilians in the north Caucasus.

              Why should I feel sorry for people who idolize mass murderers from Ivan Grozny to Putin?

              • @from Ivan Grozny to Putin

                From Ivan Grozny to Grozny. This was a pretty big fire, a whole major city burned down and blown up. Yet usually not included in the “Russia’s deadliest fires” rankings for some reason.

                I also wonder why they wouldn’t they blame “a single Georgian plane” for the recent fires too.

                http://www.themoscowtimes.com/news/article/heavy-damage-a-severed-foot-in-tskhinvali/369789.html

                Outside town, dozens of [ethnic Georgian] houses burned along the main road. A Russian officer said some of the buildings had been burning for days and others were damaged the previous night during an airstrike by a single Georgian plane.

                When an AP photographer rode through the same villages Monday morning, none of the houses was burning. The fires only began Monday night, more than 24 hours after the battle for the city was over.

          • By the way, I feel very sorry for both Russians and anyone else suffering under the current natural catastrophe. I hope that rain may soon come to Russia and Georgia. Matthew 5:45 applies in this case.

  3. fires happen everywhere—and in free societies the mistakes of the gvt are open to debate. in australia the leaders help press conferences and took criticism and hostile question. but no press conferences for little putin– he’s afraid of debate—-coward.

    • So you agree that the claim “People don’t die this way in Europe or the United States. This is how people die in Zambia and Zimbabwe.” is misleading, since it implies that only in Russia or 3rd world countries such number of fire death can happen? Thank you. I’m glad I’m not the only one who recognizes the pathological lying of Latynina and LR.

      • I think what Latynina was pointing out was that the cowardly Russian fire service abandoned the civilians to their fate, whereas in the civilised world the firefighters give their lives to save others.

        • Right. Though if, of course, a dozen or so firefighters had died, you and your ilk would be laughing that in Russia, firefighters die when doing their job.

          Just like the lie that only in Russia do roads melt in the summer, even though this happened all across Europe.

        • Hi Andrew,

          Useful idiots and kremlin propagandists will always rationalize the brutality and incompetence of the kremlin. They create straw men to fabricate the huge Potamkin village called “Great mother Russia”.

          The kremlin created this problem because the kremlin does not care about the russian sheeple.

          The polluting smog comes from fires of peat bogs to the south and east of Moscow. The bogs were drained in Soviet times to harvest the peat, leaving them prone to wildfires — especially in heat waves.

          PS The kremlin was well aware of the likely potential of the fires weeks ago, but did NOTHING!

          • @PS The kremlin was well aware of the likely potential of the fires weeks ago, but did NOTHING!

            Just as Latynina observed, singing songs with failed spies was more important.

            But here is the Russian superhero Putin now to strip half-naked as usual in summer and fly a jet to fight the fires in outhouses?

            Maybe he’s too busy kissing little boys.

          • and what could the kremlin have done to prevent the fires? buy some rain on the rain exchange? Some practical suggestions would be nice. Moron.

            • Lets see, ensure forests had fire breaks, enforce fire bans, ensure fire services were prepared to actually try and put out the fires rather than run away, prepare to evacuate residents from the areas most likely to be hit by fires.

              Ensure that proper warning procedures were in place, stop retarded Russian idiots from flicking burning cigarettes out of train and car windows, that sort of thing.

              Of course, you being a Russophile pervert you would be incapable of thinking of any of the normal measures. Same goes for the Russian government.

              It’s not like Russia or Russians have any traditional respect or value for human life or the environment for that matter.

              • @ensure fire services were prepared to actually try and put out the fires rather than run away

                To paraphrase Torshin and his “rhetoric” wisdom:

                “Who would want to fight a fire when there is a fire?”

                (He was also one who said flamethrowers can’t start a fires.)

              • Do you have any proof these things were not attempted?

                How then were they able to put out 270+ fires so far, as LES points out below?

            • Perhaps, it would be helpful to direct more resources at fire prevention and such, instead of wasting them on the “national pride” projects such as the Olympics.

            • Anybody with half a brain could have prevented this:

              A wildfire leapt into a Russian naval air base outside Moscow last week, causing substantial damage; Russian media reported as many as 200 planes may have been destroyed. Kuznetsov did not give details of where the rockets were moved to, or when the operation occurred.

              Read more:

              http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77127/20/page/1/#comments#ixzz0vrRCzIdM

            • @ and what could the kremlin have done to prevent the fires? buy some rain on the rain exchange? Some practical suggestions would be nice. Moron.

              After Putin eliminated the national fire service and transferred responsibility for fighting fires to those renting state property and the subjects of the federation, the Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of the Russian Academy of Sciences warned that “the first dry year after the liquidation of the system of forest protection would become a catastrophe” for Russia.

              Moreover, the three report, the Keldysh Institute scholars three years ago concluded that “if Russia raised the effectiveness of its system of combating forest fires to the level of the Canadian, then the area of fires and the losses of them could be reduced more than ten times.” But they ask, then what would the Emergency Situations Ministry have to do?
              The Russian system of protecting forests from fires, which existed until January 1, 2007, was inherited from Soviet times. And its operations, the three commentators say, were based on the longstanding principle that “the earlier a fire is discovered, the smaller the resources needed to put it out.”
              It had a national monitoring system of people on the ground, one that was extremely effective but cost “tens” or even “hundreds” of times less than the satellite and aerial monitoring the new system required. Not surprisingly, officials interested in gaining access to budget funds preferred the latter, despite the dangers the new system entailed.
              Among those, the three point out, is that the new system often fails to detect small fires early on, and then these fires spread, the situation is often out of control. But Moscow’s misplaced confidence in those exploiting the forces and in the power of new technology also had the effect of leading the regime to ignore new fire-fighting technologies.
              As a result, they say, at present, “subdivisions of the Emergency Situations Ministry are not prepared for an effective and rapid extinguishing of forest fires because they do not have either adequate means of monitoring or knowledge or the necessary techniques and technology” even these are widely known among Russian as well as foreign specialists.
              A tragic example of this is the current effort to extinguish peat fires with water, something Putin has been pushing with his suggestion that perhaps these areas should be flooded. But that approach, they note, is “not very effective” because “up to 25 percent” of the peat is bitumen coal” which retains the water and the fires continue.
              Russian bureaucrats, the three commentators sway, have “known for a long time about the catastrophe and means of preventing it.” But now, “the catastrophe has taken place.” And the best these officials can do is to talk about the need for increasing their budgets, even though they have demonstrated that they do not know what to do with the funds.
              “How long are we going to put up with such people?” the three ask. “How long will they tell us about the struggle with corruption and about modernization? How many citizens, houses, and forests must burn before we finally will understand the necessity of an active civic position?”
              “What must be done today?” they ask rhetorically. The powers that be are drowning in their own greed. “They do not know what has been created by builders, investigators, and innovators [in Russia itself].” Indeed, they recall Soviet leader Yury Andropov’s comment in June 1983: “We do not know the country in which we are living.”
              His words, the three Moscow commentators argue, “are more than important today when fires have become a threat to national security.” The country’s fire fighting system must be rebuilt on the basis of domestic expertise and the current bureaucrats must be replaced by others capable of doing things “more inexpensively and more effectively.”
              Russians, the three commentators conclude, “should act in precisely the same way toward those at the very top” of the political system of their country.

              Posted by Paul Goble at 8:42 AM

              http://windowoneurasia.blogspot.com/2010/08/window-on-eurasia-putins-destruction-of.html

  4. maybe putin will be asked about that at his next press conferene.
    hmmmmm—–who will the scapegoats be this time???

  5. And about Russia’s most deadly single fire since 1991 (curiously forgotten):

    The list of complaints goes on. As the battle intensified, Russian soldiers and special forces commandos fired indiscriminately into the school with high-powered weapons, including shoulder-fired rockets and tank shells. Fire trucks arrived late, and did not start putting out flames in the gym until most of its roof had collapsed, pinning injured hostages beneath burning plastic and wood.

    http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0CEFDB123FF936A15757C0A9609C8B63

    The mothers believe the Russian security forces used flame-throwers and tanks in the fighting that broke out when the siege ended. They suspect those actions contributed to many deaths.

    They’ve accused fire fighters of incompetence, alleging that when the first fire truck arrived at the school, it was carrying just 200 litres of water.

    http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2005/s1429551.htm

    Torshin said firefighters arrived on the scene of the tragedy late. “We have to investigate this. I understand everything and am not reproaching anyway. We are all human but it looks like we have to deal with the so-called human factor,” he said.

    At the same time, Torshin asked rhetorically: “Who would want to fight a fire under heavy gunfire?”

    http://en.beta.rian.ru/russia/20050906/41311501.html

    That’s right. Who would risk their life to fight a fire? Not the Russian fire fighters!

  6. The stupidity of the uncivilized savage pagan barbarians in the kremlin will now force moskali and Russians to breathe radiation also! I guess the kremlin wants to improve the demographics of moscow?

    Moscow, August 6 (Interfax) –

    A senior officer at one of the world’s largest environmental groups on Friday confirmed fears expressed by Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry on Thursday, August 5, that wildfires in Bryansk and other Russian areas affected by the 1986 Chornobyl nuclear disaster may raise radioactive fallout lying in the soil into the air.

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77238/#ixzz0vr976FG7

  7. Comparing one (1) brush fire to this is pathetic:

    Eight hundred and thirty-one wildfires have been registered in Russia, including 42 peat bog fires, the Emergency Situations Ministry has reported.

    Two hundred and forty-eight forest fires have broken out over the past 24 hours, and 273 have been put out. Five hundred and fifty-eight fires are raging on an area of 179,596 hectares, compared to 588 on an area of 193,834 hectares over the previous 24 hours, of which 293 have been localized on an area of 82,032 hectares. Eighty major fires are burning on an area of 150,852 hectares, the ministry said on its website.

    Forty-two peat bog fires broke out on Thursday, and ten were put out. Thirty-nine fires are continuing to burn, including 27 in the Moscow region, seven in the Sverdlovsk region, two in the Kirov region and one each in the Tver, Kaluga and Pskov regions.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77191/#ixzz0vrGraoBI

    • So you saying that less people have died in over 200 bushfires in Russia than in a single one in Australia?

      And those incompetent russkies succeeded in putting out 270+ fires so far?

      Truly, a complete failure by the Russians.

      • Why are you proud of the #270?

        All around the capital, twelve thousand peat bogs are slowly simmering, sending toxic clouds of carbon-rich smoke into the city. Alexander Chuchalin, the chief pulmonologist of Russia (who knew they had such a thing?), said that the air in the capital has gotten so bad that it was like all Muscovites had become chain smokers overnight. Current levels of carbon monoxide, he said, “damage an average of 20 percent of red blood cells in a human body, which equals to the effect of two packs of cigarettes smoked within three or four hours,” he told a news conference.

        Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2010/08/russia-fires.html#ixzz0vsjFxWpn

        PS Long way to go to reach 12,000++?

  8. Surprise: lots more death in Moscow

    Today, the Russian press is reporting a sharp uptick in deaths during what has been a horrendous heat wave, with temperatures constantly breaking the 130-year records that had just been set the day before.

    Earlier today, Interfax reported that deaths had increased by 29.7% in July, which, let’s recall, was before the smoke arrived.

    Morgues are swamped, which, with the heat, is not a pleasant scenario. “It’s just horrible here!” one hospital employee told LifeNews.ru. “Our refrigerators [in the morgue] are filled beyond capacity! Yesterday, we had 17 corpses, the day before 17, even though normally we see two or three. That’s 5-6 times more! The corpses are at least in refrigerators, and not only do we not have air conditioning, we don’t even have a damn fan!”

    And, of course, these are all leaks. Hospital employees have been forbidden from talking to the press.

    https://themoscowdiaries.wordpress.com/2010/08/06/surprise-lots-more-death-in-moscow/

    • This is as expected for the uncivilized pagan barbarians in the kremlin!

      A few years ago I spoke with the chief medical examiner for the Chernobyl area after the nuclear “accident”.

      He told me that an order came from the kremlin that death certificates can not have radiation as the cause of death written. Write heart attack, etc – ANYTHING but radiation.

      We will never know the truth from the incompetent evil idiots that ruled and continue to rule the kremlin.

      • @He told me that an order came from the kremlin that death certificates can not have radiation as the cause of death written. Write heart attack, etc – ANYTHING but radiation.

        You know what were the official causes of deaths more than 100 people after Dubrovka theater was gassed bv the FSB? “Terrorism”. (According to Putin, in his own words: “dehydration, chronic disease or the very fact that [they] had been confined in the building”.)

        http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/article638035.ece

        You know what were the exact causes of deaths of a large part of the Polish government and military command in April (Russian autopsies, the Poles buried them without their own thinking the Russian ones would be enough)? “Multiple injuries”.

        • Not the least remarkable thing about Dmitri Milovidov’s story is the fact that it happened on October 28. That is to say: 48 hours after having been reassured that there had been no fatalities among the hostages; 46 hours after having been told that fatalities had occurred but that there were no children among them; 31 hours after having been notified of a government helpline for frantic relatives, a number which, when dialled, was never answered; and 24 hours after Dmitri and his wife, Olga, bewildered by the official silence, began their long search for their daughter, at first through the chaotic hospitals of the capital and then, as hope drained, through its morgues.

          Mr Putin vigorously denied any connection between the gas and the subsequent fatalities: “Those people did not die because of the effects of the gas, for the gas is not harmful,” he emphasised in an interview with American journalists in 2003. “And we can say that none of the hostages were injured in the course of the operation.”

          The 26th was a terrible day for the Milovidovs, followed by a terrible night, and then another terrible day among thousands of other desperate relatives (there were still at least 600 hostages inside the theatre when the security services stormed it) and at the end of it all there was Nina, her face and hands swollen as if she had choked, her internal organs “ flooded with liquid” as a doctor confided to them, and on her death certificate, along with Time of Death and Place of Death, was a simple entry next to Cause of Death: “Terrorism”.

        • The kremlin still lies by saying “only” 52 people died:

          MOSCOW – Russian troops dug a 8-km (5-mile) long canal to keep fires caused by a record heatwave away from a nuclear arms site, local media said on Saturday as air pollution from the crisis rose to more than six times above normal.

          Forest and peat fires by the highest temperatures ever registered in Russia have killed at least 52 people, made more than 4,000 homeless, diverted many flights and forced Muscovites to wear surgical masks to filter out foul air.

          Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77329/#ixzz0vvbUM03s

  9. Could so many fires be the straw that broke the camels back and lead to another revolution?

    Russia on Fire

    Posted by Julia Ioffe

    All around the capital, twelve thousand peat bogs are slowly simmering, sending toxic clouds of carbon-rich smoke into the city. Alexander Chuchalin, the chief pulmonologist of Russia (who knew they had such a thing?), said that the air in the capital has gotten so bad that it was like all Muscovites had become chain smokers overnight. Current levels of carbon monoxide, he said, “damage an average of 20 percent of red blood cells in a human body, which equals to the effect of two packs of cigarettes smoked within three or four hours,” he told a news conference.

    Dr. Chuchalin made this statement last Wednesday, a day that smelled vaguely of barbecue. This week, just after midnight Tuesday, the mesquite smell returned. By 4 A.M., Moscow was enveloped in a heavy fog, one that didn’t lift. By Wednesday afternoon, visibility had dropped to a hundred yards. The smoke had penetrated the city’s deepest Metro stations, which had been used as bomb shelters during the Second World War. A fine grit coated parked cars. Chests rasped, eyes watered. But Muscovites who ventured out into the thick pewter cloud soldiered on without masks. “No, we are Russians,” a nurse told my friend Miriam Elder, reporting for GlobalPost. “We believe in luck.”

    Elder travelled to one of the worst-hit areas, eighty-some miles southeast of Moscow, near Ryazan. “With three colleagues, I left Moscow at 7 a.m. and got to the hospital in Moscow at 7 p.m. Twelve hours and not one moving fire truck, army truck, official emergencies ministry vehicle.” (Elder could have used help herself; she sank into a boiling sandpit, getting second-degree burns on the soles of her feet.)

    This scene is playing out all over the Russian countryside, which, as always, is suffering far more than Moscow. Villagers received no fire warnings. When the fires started approaching, some had trouble reaching the local authorities. Others begged for buses to help evacuate their villages, were told to fend for themselves. Fire trucks didn’t come, either, and then their homes, made of wood, were gone in minutes. The forestry minister, meanwhile, is on his August vacation, and has no plans to cut it short.

    The government’s response has been a disaster, and the people are blaming their local officials—but not the very top. When a mob of irate women descended on Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, they weren’t mad at him; they were demanding that he, as one woman put it, “string [local officials] up by the balls.”

    A strong argument could be made for calling this disaster Putin’s Hurricane Katrina. In 2006, then-President Putin, in consultation with the Russian timber industry, “reformed” forestry regulations, eliminating positions for rangers, making each of the remaining ones responsible for more territory, increasing paperwork so they spent hardly any time outdoors monitoring the forests—and, on the off chance that they did spot a small fire while on patrol, making it a punishable offense (a misuse of state funds) to put it out. The organization charged with extinguishing fires was the Ministry of Emergency Situations, which responded speedily and capably to the Moscow Metro bombings in March, but a 2005 reform instituted by Putin left regional emergency outfits severely underfunded.

    Except for the minority who read news in papers or online, Russians would never know that shoddy, nonsensical, industry-friendly deregulation was responsible for this natural disaster as much as the weather. Instead, the vast majority get their news from television, which has been broadcasting pictures of Putin, sleeves rolled up, touring the destruction. In a particularly fine touch, the main Russian television channel broadcast a “phone call” from Putin, ostensibly on his cell phone in the middle of a pristine birch grove, to President Dmitry Medvedev, back in his ornate Kremlin office. The message was clear: Putin was in charge, and this reassured the people who had lost homes to the fires he helped cause. “Putin said they’ll build us all new houses, so it will probably happen,” one villager told the Independent.

    There were no other emergency valves en route to this fiery disaster—no forest rangers, fire trucks, and, of course, no insurance—and a tidy, if tiny, cash payout from Putin ex machina must still come with a huge surge of relief, gratitude, and, worse, fealty.

    Read more

    http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2010/08/russia-fires.html#ixzz0vrZVVzz0

  10. Hello, my dear friends)
    Andrew, your tell your psychiatrist that those doses of neuroleptics that you take you do not help.
    makhalka, relax, are almost all very ill. Gloat over the fact that people are dying and losing blood …
    They just want that-be at the helm of the country got someone like a weak-willed Boree alcoholics, they are afraid of us. They do not wish us well in the form of democracy. They want us to evil in the form of democracy.

    For the moderators: Why are you so hard you will not let my links in comments?

  11. I once took a tour of firefighting facilities outside of Moscow. It was a municipal facility granted, but it was heralded by the local authorities as some sort of accomplishment. However, it was a joke, the equipment looked like it was circa 1960′s, I could see visible rust on several components of the vehicles and pumps, and… the tires were bald. The personnel themselves looked like rejects from “Police Academy” (the comedy film), and communications was a joke.

    At some point, the feeble excuse of lack of budgetary funding should be understood as “the big guys are too greedy to share their ill-gotten gains” even to prop up their own neighborhood infrastructure. On the other hand, they can easily flee the smog and hang out in Europe, Sochi, etc., where their lungs stay clear, while the serfs and peons just die faster… Well, its one way of culling the population.

  12. The accompaning photograph: Are you serious?! or is that just put up as a joke. Gees it looks like a remake of “The Grapes of Wrath” scene. Please tell me you are tongue in cheek on this one.

  13. Pingback: Article Roundup for August 7, 2010 | The Constitution Club

  14. What the heck is an anti-smog center? A room with one AC and one complete set of the soviet encyclopedia? For about 10,000,000 people?New “double speak” from the kremlin?

    Moscow opens anti-smog centers as fires burn

    Today at 14:41

    MOSCOW — Moscow authorities say they have opened more than 120 anti-smog centers as wildfires around the capital suffocate residents and ground dozens of flights.

    Municipal official Vladimir Petrosyan said Sunday that exasperated Muscovites could “get their breath back” in 123 air-conditioned rooms that have opened to the public in government buildings and hospitals.

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77406/#ixzz0w1WHeKB9

    • @What the heck is an anti-smog center? A room with one AC and one complete set of the soviet encyclopedia?

      Maybe something like an “anti-terrorism center”:

      http://en.rian.ru/russia/20070119/59371599.html

      “During the investigation, it was established that an officer of the Chechen Republic’s anti-terrorism center set up an armed group from among his colleagues and acquaintances in December 2005.

      “During their attacks, the bandits used Kalashnikov assault rifles, Makarov handguns, ammunition, military uniforms and equipment provided to them by the anti-terrorism center,” police said.

      A police spokesman said the bandits would announce themselves as officers with the organized crime department, charged with checking passports. He said they would burst into apartments and rob city residents of household appliances, jewels and cash, beating anyone who resisted.

      (What the RIAN and “police spokesman” failed to mention they would also occasionally murder random residents to plant weapons on them as “destroyed terrorists” for bonuses and promotions. And hardly on this particular “anti-terrorism” group, this was and still is a common practice.)

  15. “‘Putin said they’ll build us all new houses, so it will probably happen,” one villager told the Independent. ‘”

    Yes, definitely. It will. I admire your optimism, dear unknown villager. Go and reelect your government!

    Just another fund will be created and the money will disappear in the pockets of Putin and his gang.

    By the way: I have heard that Moscow is flooded with vermin. I mean real one, the animals – bugs, lice etc.

    Sounds pretty much like a scenario from the holy Bible…

  16. Sunday, August 8, 2010

    In Moscow began hurriedly evacuated employees of foreign embassies, like a stampede . Many embassies seek to hide evacuation for political reasons. First night, August 7 was officially known about the mass evacuation of employees in Canada and Poland.

    Meanwhile, Western media reported that the Canadian Embassy in Moscow closed . Dutch embassy diplomatic staff urgently evacuated from Russia.

    High levels of air pollution as a consequence of forest fires, was indeed a reason to evacuate embassy staff in these countries and their families .

    Interview question as the plague, but primarily increased dramatically in the background radiation caused by nuclear bombs destroying fires at depots of nuclear weapons located near Moscow. Allegedly burned warehouses and chemical and biological weapons .

    The final decision on the immediate evacuation of foreign diplomats from Russia was taken after the leader of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations terbandy Shoigu said that ” in the Bryansk region due to fire may increase the radiation level ( where the soil is still very heavily contaminated by Chernobyl ).

    Experienced diplomats understand immediately familiar to them Esopian language and rushed to enter into suitcases, Russian media reported .

    In the early morning August 7th flight of foreign diplomats from Russia in mass . It is possible that the diplomats through their countries’ intelligence services know something that is unknown to the general public .

    Germany officially closed the embassy and evacuated from the doomed Russian entire staff without exception . Austria, together with Poland and Canada, almost all evacuated employees from Russia. Embassies asked to get stuck in the country urging its citizens to leave as soon as possible .

    Hamburg newspaperDie WeltMeanwhile, August 7 in the morning having a test indicated that all emergency escape German diplomats from Russia due to radiation coming to Moscow.

    Radiation for information comes from newspaper sites for the production of atomic bombs (400 km. east of Moscow ) , burning in Sarovs . Emission of radiation into the environment continues.

    In the ” Atomic Research Centre , referred to as sweet as this plant is still burning two fires, indicating the newspaper . These facts can not hide the Russians , because it’s highly visible from satellites.

    Naturally, that affected the evacuation of all without exception Embassy in Moscow , but they are still not informed about it for political reasons. The matter is very serious and certainly not in smog .

    Meanwhile, the governments of civilized countries warned their citizens that they in no case went to the covered full range of traditional and natural disasters nestyhiynyh Russia.

    Austrian Embassy in Moscowaskedall Austrian citizens in Russia calling immediately leave the country. All Austrian diplomats immediately leave Russia. The embassy will only have small staff without diplomatic status . Naturally, that would give visas to Russians to anyone.

    U.S. State Department warned Americans that travel and stay in Russia related to a mortal threat to life. Notification was issued on Friday. Bureau of Consular Affairs of the U.S. foreign ministry issued a statement which says:

    ” The State Department warned U.S. citizens on American risks associated with that trip to Russia in connection with forest fires there and their effect on safety, air quality and transportation .

    The statement underlines that the fires and ” extremely high temperatures in the central part of Russia led to ” dangerous levels of air pollution, delays and cancel numerous flights in Moscow .

    Americans are going to those areas of Russia , it is recommended to abandon the trip. Core and suffering from respiratory diseases of U.S. citizens that are already in the giant disaster zone , which is now all over Russia , the U.S. government is calling without having to go out and avoid major physical activity.

    In the current warning will remain valid until 5 September when the situation in Russia for U.S. forecasts may improve in some of the fires as burn will have nothing . For plague and radiation situation remains unpredictable.

    Outappealsnot travel to Russia turned to its citizens as German Foreign Ministry , Bulgaria and other countries.

    http://biletskyi.blogspot.com/2010/08/blog-post_08.html

  17. International embassies closing and fleeing Moscow due to radiation.

    • The huge Potamkin village called moscow may soon be a ghost town?

      • Russians are angry that authorities have been slow to respond, which means finding people to blame (and photo ops for Putin).

        Another standard expression is finding the real culprit. You guessed it: the American military-industrial complex.

        Here’s what happened: Nikolai Karavaev, a former military meteorologist, has come out with an earth-shattering hypothesis that “climate weapons” are being used against Russia. I mean, is it a coincidence that, right in the area where the atmosphere has thinned the most over Russia, causing a “giant anti-cyclone” — never before seen in these parts — right when the Americans launched the X-37B satellite right there?

        If that’s not proof enough, here, mesdames et messieurs, is the charred proof pudding: a big, burned-to-the-ground military base outside of Moscow. 200 units of aviation, up in smoke. That’s $670 million worth of damage.

        Check mate, America. Check mate.

        https://themoscowdiaries.wordpress.com/2010/08/04/proof-in-the-charred-pudding/

        • Actually, could this be one reason why russia is burning like hell?

          Crunch Gear: In Communist Russia, air force makes snow fall on outskirts of town

          Oct 19, 2009 at 23:22

          The Mayor of Moscow, Yury Luzhkov, will seed clouds around the city in order to encourage them to dump their frosty white payloads in the outskirts, thereby sparing the lives of thousands of hard-core city-dwelling Russian drunks and making it easier for the Mercedes and BMWs go to and from the apartments of plutocrats to the Gucci store. Drunks and plutocrats on the outskirts are SOL.

          Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/world/detail/50969/#ixzz0w7IDc2yH

  18. Moscow authorities have been forced to acknowledge that the heat and smoke of the last week have doubled the city’s mortality rates. Some estimates put the number at 2.5 times the normal rate.

    This comes after weeks of speculation that the heat — higher than anything recorded since they started recording the temperature 130 years ago — had pushed more bodies into the morgue than in previous summers. (The current daily death rate is about 700, versus 360 under normal circumstances.) Ambulance calls over the weekend peaked — some 10,000 a day — as paramedics kept fainting in un-air-conditioned ambulances and temperatures inside topped 120F.

    All of this came with reports that doctors were threatened with losing their jobs if they put down “heat stroke” as a cause of death. Others were banned from speaking to reporters. And this, in turn, is part of a long tradition of the Russian authorities responding to disaster by shutting down, dissembling, and straight-up lying to their increasingly worried and angry subjects. (Think: Kursk, Dubrovka, Beslan.)

    https://themoscowdiaries.wordpress.com/2010/08/09/2009/

    Meanwhile, as Russia’s head doctor asks private businesses let their employees skip work till Tuesday, Moscow’s city government doesn’t see the need to declare an emergency situation. They have, however, opened 123 “rest centers,” open daily till 8 pm, where citizens can come escape the smoke and cool themselves under AC. Unfortunately, only one fifth of those are actually open, and of those very few have air conditioning.

    • Well, Andrei Belevsky, the head pulmonologist of Moscow’s Ministry of Health, says, psssh, fuhggetaboutit! “It’s like smoking,” he says. “In order to develop the risk of lung cancer, you need to smoke a lot and for a long time. A month or two of this smoke will not cause this.”

      I’m sorry, a month or two?!

      Moving on. Dmitry Medvedev has proposed renaming the “militia” to “politsia,” or “police.” Grand.

      The authorities are reporting that Russia’s nuclear arsenal is safe. Phew.

      And, the coup de grace, Moscow mayor Yuri Luzhkov is on vacation and has no intention of coming back to help his subjects deal with what looks increasingly like a bad remake of “28 Days Later.” Moreover, he sent his rude son of a **** spokesman Victor Tsoi to break the news. Here’s what he said.

      “What is the problem? What, do we have an emergency situation in Moscow, a crisis? What is the problem in Moscow? Is it Moscow’s problem? Is the crisis in Moscow? What can we do in Moscow in this situation? If it’s necessary to come back and just show yourself, that’s one thing. But everything that should’ve been done in Moscow has been done. A system has been worked out.”

      Asked where the mayor was vacationing, Tsoi said, “If we want to tell you, we’ll tell you.”

      http://themoscowdiaries.wordpress.com/2010/08/06/apocalypse-now/

      • Hi Robert,

        I tried to post comments that international embassies are closing and fleeing moscow due to radiation.

        • Yeah, I see. Wow, that’s some bad English. But yes, foreign embassies are being evacuated, it’s not that much of a secret.

      • From the same blog:

        Well, now, after the Mayor gives us all a guilt trip about us making him cut short his taking the cure for a sports injury in Austria, we find out this:

        LifeNews reports that, all this time, one of Luzhkov’s constituencies has been well taken care of.

        Yes, his bees.

        Russia’s most famous apiarist — honey has been a major Russian export since the days of Kievan Rus — has made sure that his precious honey bees have been evacuated from the hot, only somewhat smoggy Tula region.

        Quoth Luzhkov’s beekeeper Alexander: “There on the lakes, the air is better, and the ecological situation is more conducive to selection.”

        http://themoscowdiaries.wordpress.com/2010/08/10/oh-beehave/

  19. Farmers may not be able to sow their winter crop in time due to dry weather and financial problems, the Russian Grain Union said Monday. “As it looks now, nothing can be sown in large parts of Russia. The soil is simply too dry,” said Anton Sharapin, a spokesman for the union.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704388504575418823130481884.html

  20. Nov. 04, 2009:

    Russia doesn’t seem to care two bits about global warming, and it’s not hard to see why. Most Russians would probably be happy if the country was a little warmer. Officials even joke that once climate change has run its course, people may start pouring into Siberia instead of trying to escape it.

    http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1929071_1929070_1934785,00.html

    To say that Russia is hesitant about tackling climate change is putting it mildly. The last time the world tried to get the country’s cooperation on the issue was in 1997, during negotiations for the Kyoto Protocol (the international treaty on limiting greenhouse-gas emissions). Because Russia is the world’s third largest source of emissions after the U.S. and China, the accord would have failed without it. So the treaty was written in a way that would allow Russia to keep polluting as much as it wanted and grant the country billions of dollars in emissions allowances to sell to other countries that needed to meet their Kyoto commitments.

    • Fast-forward less than 1 year:

      Russians are not used to heat waves. When the high temperatures that have overwhelmed Russia over the past six weeks first arrived in June, some 1,200 Russians drowned at the country’s beaches. “The majority of those who drowned were drunk,” the Emergencies Ministry concluded in mid-July, citing the Russian habit of taking vodka to cool off by the sea. But while overconsumption of vodka is a familiar scourge in Russia, extreme heat is not, and as the worst heat wave on record spawns wildfires that are destroying entire villages, Russian officials have made what for them is a startling admission: global warming is very real.

      At a meeting of international sporting officials in Moscow on July 30, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev announced that in 14 regions of the country, “practically everything is burning. The weather is anomalously hot.” Then, as TV cameras zoomed in on the perspiration shining on his forehead, Medvedev announced, “What’s happening with the planet’s climate right now needs to be a wake-up call to all of us, meaning all heads of state, all heads of social organizations, in order to take a more energetic approach to countering the global changes to the climate.”

      http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2008081,00.html

      For Medvedev, such sentiments mark a striking about-face. Only last year, he announced that Russia, the world’s third largest polluter after China and the U.S., would be spewing 30% more planet-warming gases into the atmosphere by 2020. “We will not cut our development potential,” he said during the summer of 2009 (an unusually mild one), just a few months before attending the Copenhagen climate summit, which in December failed to reach a substantial agreement on how to limit carbon emissions.

      But even that pronouncement, grim as it seemed to the organizers of the Copenhagen talks, was mild compared with the broader Russian campaign against the idea that global warming is taking place. Two months before Copenhagen, state-owned Channel One television aired a documentary called The History of a Deception: Global Warming, which argued that the notion of man-made climate change was the result of an international media conspiracy.

      “Broadly speaking, the Russian position has always been that climate change is an invention of the West to try to bring Russia to its knees,” says Vladimir Chuprov, director of the Greenpeace energy department in Moscow. Case in point: when Medvedev visited Tomsk last winter, he called the global-warming debate “some kind of tricky campaign made up by some commercial structures to promote their business projects.”

  21. In the early morning August 7th flight of foreign diplomats from Russia in mass . It is possible that the diplomats through their countries’ intelligence services know something that is unknown to the general public .

    Hamburg newspaperDie WeltMeanwhile, August 7 in the morning having a test indicated that all emergency escape German diplomats from Russia due to radiation coming to Moscow.

    Radiation for information comes from newspaper sites for the production of atomic bombs (400 km. east of Moscow ) , burning in Sarovs . Emission of radiation into the environment continues.

    In the ” Atomic Research Centre , referred to as sweet as this plant is still burning two fires, indicating the newspaper . These facts can not hide the Russians , because it’s highly visible from satellites.

  22. In the early morning August 7th flight of foreign diplomats from Russia in mass . It is possible that the diplomats through their countries’ intelligence services know something that is unknown to the general public .

    Hamburg newspaperDie WeltMeanwhile, August 7 in the morning having a test indicated that all emergency escape German diplomats from Russia due to radiation coming to Moscow.

  23. Regional administration resigns after Russia fire
    Dec 9, 2009 at 13:23 | Reuters

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/54615/#ixzz0w7HKsJDA

    PS Will the entire russian government resign after this fiasco?

  24. An excellent article:

    http://www.rferl.org/content/As_Russian_Fires_Rage_Forest_Rangers_Fume/2122983.html

    As Russian Fires Rage, Forest Rangers Fume

    Crisis Management

    With the death toll mounting and homes and forest land continuing to burn, the government is facing a monumental challenge to its preferred image of implacable control. (The recent announcement that Russia will ban grain exports in the face of a disastrous, drought-afflicted harvest, is likely to send food prices soaring and weaken the Kremlin’s standing even further.)

    Putin, now prime minister, has become a frequent sight on Russian television in recent weeks, promising state restitution for lost homes and berating local bureaucrats for failing to fight back the fires. But writing in “The Moscow Times,” political commentator Yulia Latynina said that “in reality, there is really only one bureaucrat who is responsible for this tragedy — Putin himself. After all, it was Putin who signed the Forest Code in 2007.”

    The Russian leadership has also come under criticism for failing to prepare for summer-season wildfires which, in recent years of rising temperatures, have become a fairly routine event. Analyst Yevgeny Volk of the Heritage Foundation think tank says many are wondering why the Kremlin was caught flat-footed by a summertime threat that has plagued the country for years.

    “It’s no secret that peat fires and forest fires have been the traditional companions of hot weather in Russia for many decades already,” says Volk. “There was nothing unexpected about this. So it naturally raises the question of why, at the start of the season — when they predicted a very hot summer — they didn’t take appropriate measures for preparing for and notifying people about the dangerous situation regarding these fires.”

  25. I was wrong. The kremlin shills are still here.

  26. Fianally, LR is back online. :)

    But what happened to the most recent comments section? :(

    PS Other sites warn visitors before they update or change their format?

  27. We will never know the # of human beings that died due to the incompetence of the uncivilized pagan barbarians in the kremlim ?
    10,000′s ?
    100,000′s ?

    Morgues struggle to cope as heatwave kills Muscovites

    Yesterday at 21:33 | Reuters

    MOSCOW, Aug 9 (Reuters) – Muscovites are dying from extreme heat and smoke faster than their bodies can be stored, cremated or buried, and Russians are worried the death toll could be far higher than the official count.

    Morgues are overflowing and one crematorium in the Russian capital is working around the clock in three shifts, according to staff, even as the health ministry disputes a senior doctor’s statement that the monthly death toll doubled in July.

    “Since this heat nightmare started … there has been a drastic increase in funerals over the past two months, two or three times above the average,”
    -Cemetery worker

    In Mitino on Moscow’s northwest, a note at a crematorium warned that it was not accepting any new orders for cremation.

    The crematorium’s four furnaces are currently “processing” 49 bodies per day, with cremations every 20 minutes, according to a timetable available at the reception.

    “Furnaces overheat in these temperatures, and we have to cool them,” Vladimir, a security guard, told Reuters. “In practice, there are up to 80-90 cremations per day, and the crematorium’s teams work in three shifts day and night to cope.”

    The Khimkinskoye cemetery in northern Moscow was packed with funeral buses, with a dozen burial ceremonies taking place.

    But there are no statistics referring to Moscow, amid some media reports that the city’s paramedics are told not to include “heat stroke” in death records “to avoid panic”.

    But the head of the city’s health department Andrei Seltsovsky said on Monday that deaths had almost doubled to 700 daily, with heat being the main killer.

    The Health Ministry criticised Seltsovsky, saying it was “bewildered by these unofficial figures” and that Moscow’s death rates had actually fallen in January-June.

    “My 70-year-old mother died in this heat,” she said. “She had been feeling bad for weeks, but the ambulance refused to take her, saying all hospitals were full. Now she is dead, and they are short of space in this morgue too!”
    The ambulance doctor told her that her mother died of a heart attack caused by heat, but he did not include that in the official death record, she said.

    The morgue at Hospital No. 62, originally designed to store up to 35 bodies, has been overloaded since the heatwave started in June, a morgue attendant said.

    “Today we have 80 bodies. We store them anywhere we can because the refrigerators are full,” he told Reuters.

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77606/#ixzz0wAuxpqDs

    • @“Today we have 80 bodies. We store them anywhere we can because the refrigerators are full,” he told Reuters.

      I remember how 2 years they “stored” the “trophy” corpses of Georgians in the baking sun for many days until they scorched them black, and then they told how the Georgian soldiers are “negro mercenaries”. Innovation!

      Maybe they should try this treatment of dead bodies also in their capital. Leave them in the streets, make some “negros”, after all everyone loves black people in Moscow.

  28. Actually, could this be one reason why russia is burning like hell?
    Why are 10,000′s of people dying in moscow?

    LUHANSK – On July 18, 2010, a wooden Church of Archistratege Michael of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Kyivan Patriarchate in the eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk was set on fire by unknown persons and burned down. The construction of that first wooden church of Kyivan Patriarchate in Luhansk was almost completed: only the dome was to be installed. According to the press service of the UOC-KP, the guard testifies that at night two people broke in, beat him, and set the building on fire using gasoline. According to Bishop Tykhon of Luhansk, the loss exceeds 300 thousand UAH. The guard is in extensive care. The investigation continues.

    The press service stresses that in the recent time, churches of the Kyivan Patriarchate were burned in Shostka of the eastern Ukrainian Sumy region and Mariupol of the eastern Ukrainian Donetsk Region. In the first case it was proved that the arson was ordered by a minister of the Moscow Patriarchate. In the second case, the initiators were not found.

    http://risu.org.ua/en/index/all_news/community/vandalism/36544/

  29. Foreign Policy: Medvedev is no liberal

    Today at 06:14

    Julia Ioffe writes:

    When your country, simmering for days in record-breaking heat, suddenly bursts into flame in 831 places, destroying half a million acres of land, killing 52 people, blanketing your capital in toxic smoke, and threatening to release old Chernobyl radiation into the atmosphere, someone has to take charge. If you’re the Russian president, however, you will not be that person. You will sit in your office while your prime minister, his sleeves rolled up the way men of action tend to roll them up when they mean business, goes and tours the devastation, talks to grieving villagers, and shows the country that, hey, he’s on it.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77624/#ixzz0wBmvoRdK

    • @Foreign Policy: Medvedev is no liberal

      Seriously? Who knew!

      @If you’re the Russian president, however, you will not be that person. You will sit in your office while your prime minister

      They’re getting it all wrong, he’s busy making his nanomachines to save the day.

      • @After the warm Moscow-Washington spring we’ve had, one would be forgiven for believing the conventional wisdom: that the aggressive, unpredictable Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is relaxing his hold on the reins a bit, and that President Dmitry Medvedev, the shy liberal, is finally coming into his own.

        They’re calling stupidity “conventional wisdom”.

  30. Bloomberg:

    Moscow fires curb bond trading as Alfa, JPMorgan bankers flee

    Today at 06:59

    Wildfires from Russia’s record heat wave are curbing bond trading as the smoke engulfing Moscow drives away bankers.Fixed-income trades dropped by as much as 25 percent in the past five days, according to Moscow-based investment bank IFC Metropol. Fewer sales of corporate bonds set the new issues market on course for its lowest third-quarter total since 2007, falling 8 percent from the same period last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77629/20/page/1/#comment-73767#ixzz0wBoYPsaZ

  31. State of emergency declared near Russian nuclear fuel dump

    Today at 10:08 | Interfax-Ukraine

    A state of emergency has been declared in the Ozyorsk closed territorial entity in the Chelyabinsk region, where the Mayak nuclear fuel disposal and storage facility is located.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77643/#ixzz0wBq2CyXv

  32. The Telegraph: Who can put out Russia’s fires?

    Today at 10:59

    Andrew Osborne writes:

    Russia, the country’s top weatherman gloomily announced yesterday, is in the grip of its fiercest heatwave in a thousand years. Looking around, you can see what he means. The Kremlin is blanketed in thick smog from fires ringing the Russian capital; the sun, when visible, is a tiny orange orb; and a vast swath of central Russia, the world’s largest country, is ablaze.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77652/#ixzz0wBqksl00

  33. NASA satalite photos from a comment on another web site :

    The Director of the Institute of Hydrometeorology Volodymyr Osadchy could not have seen the latest NASA obervations as of August 1st, which show that already at that time, the effect of the Russian Peat bog fires had reached the north and norteastern borders of Ukraine.

    A typical process as he describe cannot of course be excluded to have added effect on the smog seen in Kiev, however dismissing this effect having its origin from the massive fires in Russia is simply a total misjudgement at its best.

    The below link from NASA show a side-by-side comparison of carbon monoxide pollution from the series of devastating wildfires burning across central and western Russia, as seen by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument on NASA’s Aqua spacecraft on July 21, 2010 (left) and Aug. 1, 2010 (right). The AIRS data show the abundance of carbon monoxide present in the atmosphere at an altitude of 5.5 kilometers (18,000 feet)

    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2010-261&rn=news.xml&rst=2695

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/city/detail/77555/#ixzz0wCKnHEu5

  34. The kremlin’s BS propaganda begins :

    Putin took off Tuesday in a Be-200 firefighting plane and then moved into the copilot’s seat. Television footage showed him pushing a button to unleash water on blazing forest fires about 120 miles (200 kilometers) southeast of Moscow.

    After hitting the button, Putin glanced toward the pilot and asked, “Was that OK?”

    The response: “A direct hit!”

    The stunt was classic Putin. In past years, he has copiloted a fighter jet, ridden a horse bare-chested in Siberia and descended to the bottom of Lake Baikal in a mini-sub. Just last month he drove a Harley Davidson motorcycle to a biker rally.

    All of his exploits have been widely publicized on the national television networks, which are under government control. Russia holds its next presidential election in 2012, and Putin would be eligible to run in it.

    Damage from the fires was expected to hit $15 billion, or about 1 percent of Russia’s gross domestic product, the business newspaper Kommersant reported Tuesday. The government has yet to release any damage estimates.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77774/#ixzz0wEEkYiE8

  35. Greenpeace: Wildfires spread to Chornobyl-stricken Russian forests

    Today at 18:31

    Moscow, August 10 (Interfax) – Wildfires raging in European Russia have spread to forests that suffered high-degree radioactive contamination during the 1986 Chornobyl accident, one of the largest international environmental groups, Greenpeace, said on Tuesday.

    “Today Greenpeace has published a map from which it follows that fires have begun in radiation-contaminated forests. The map, based on information as of August 9, makes clear that there are more than 20 fires in contaminated territories, including three fires in highly contaminated forests in Bryansk region,” Greenpeace Russia said in a press release.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/77756/#ixzz0wEMsmzfR

  36. Analyst Razmakhin: Fires producing Chernobyl-type panic in Russia

    Today at 11:05 | Paul Goble

    The impact of smoke from Russia’s fires on the physically weakest members of society, the inability of the powers that be to deal with this consequence, and the efforts of some officials to impose “an information blockade” on what is going on is generating a Chernobyl-type panic in many parts of the Russian Federation.

    Even more than the fires, Anton Razmakhnin writes in today’s “Svobodnaya pressa,” the way smoke is affecting people and official efforts to deny or play down the problem – the site of a blogger doctor who talked about it was shut down, for example, have left people with the sense that they are “waiting for the apocalypse” (svpressa.ru/society/article/28801/).

    And third, an article in “Svobodnaya pressa” quotes a group of Russian academic specialists who say that the recovery from the impact of the fires will take “at a minimum” 30 to 40 years, yet another indication of just how difficult it is going to be for Russia to overcome the consequences of Moscow’s recent failures (svpressa.ru/society/article/28701/).

    Read more:

    http://www.kyivpost.com/news/opinion/op_ed/detail/77653/#ixzz0wEZbkdW6

  37. Something that was not in the major news stories :

    Sunday, August 8, 2010

    In Moscow, flaying birds die due to the smoke

    Many motorists said that the roads have become littered with many more crushed and dead birds and other animals.

    http://biletskyi.blogspot.com/2010/08/blog-post_8703.html

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