Mr. Medvedev, his Carpet and his Broom
See Dima sweep. Sweep, Dima, Sweep! Under the carpet! Sweep, sweep, sweep!
Streetwise Professor reports that last week Russian “president” Dima Medvedev announced a massive new slate of spending reductions forced upon his government by the national economic collapse. Paul Goble reports that among these will be a brutal slashing of the budget for the 2010 census.
Let’s overlook the fact that the Putin regime is apparently still able to find plenty of funds for nuclear weapons and other ways of provoking and escalating the new cold war, sending all sorts of wealth to all sorts of places from Venezuela to Syria. Let’s not focus on what these draconian cutbacks mean for the people of Russia. Let’s instead watch Dima feverishly trying to sweep it all under the carpet.
Dima Medvedev, Psychopath
In 1957, a 16-year-old boy went off to Jewish summer camp in the wilds of Wisconsin. While there, he published a poem about the cruel slaying of a faithful doggy in the summer camp newspaper. It was a real tear-jerker, a work of art, and indeed nearly flawless except for the fact that it was a shameless plagiarism of a country music ditty written several years before.
The young man’s name was Bob Dylan.
Never you mind though, dear reader, because the Christie’s auction house, which didn’t deign to notice the forgery until alerted by customers, still thinks it can get a cool 15 g’s for the childish scribbling. How many of “his” songs Dylan actually wrote now becomes, well, anyone’s guess.
Things, you may say, are not always what they seem. And so it is with our good friend Dima Medvedev, neo-soviet psychopath.
The Moscow Times reports that, since the Russian economy is doing so well, “president” Dima Medvedev has plenty of time on his hands to mess around with academic projects, like this one for instance (look for our editorial and Yulia Latynina’s op-ed on the same topic in Monday’s issue):
President Dmitry Medvedev has ordered the creation of a new commission tasked with countering attempts to rewrite history to the detriment of Russia’s interests, the Kremlin said Tuesday. The presidential decree establishing the commission follows a May 8 video address posted on Medvedev’s web site in which the president complained that attempts to falsify history were becoming “increasingly harsh, depraved and aggressive.”
The initiative appears to be part of a Kremlin drive to defend its vision of the country’s 20th-century history.
Unhinged Medvedev on the Warpath
As neo-Soviet nuclear weapons and tanks prowled Red Square two weekends ago, Russian “president” Dima Medvedev boldly declared (clearly and repeatedly referencing Russia’s invasion of Georgia): “Russia’s defense is our holy duty. Any aggression against our citizens will be rightfully repelled.”
Anyone who still thinks this maniac might be a liberal clearly needs to have his head examined.
Post Global carries a column by Russian expat Anna Borshchevskaya of Johns Hopkins University:
If it weren’t so sad, it would be funny to read Russia’s President Medvedev’s recent interview with Novaya Gazeta, in which he said, “Democracy [in Russia] existed, exists, and will exist.”
Human rights still appear to be a luxury in Russia. Recently, Lev Ponomaryov, director of the Moscow-based Organization For Human Rights, and a leader in the new political opposition movement Solidarity, was reportedly beaten by a group of men outside his home . Stanislav Markelov, whom the Wall Street Journal called one of Russia’s top human rights lawyers, was murdered in late January, as was Anastasia Baburova, a 25-year-old freelancer for Novaya Gazeta, which, according to the New Zealand Herald, is the last major publication critical of the Kremlin. Novaya Gazeta also lost three other journalists in the last decade– Anna Politkovskaya, Yuri Shchekochikhin, and Igor Domnikov.
Law professor and Russia scholar Ethan Burger and his colleague Mary Holland, writing on the Foreign Policy website, wonder whether Dima Medvedev has a roving eye:
When Vladimir Putin stepped down as president of Russia last May, he left little to chance. Just as his predecessor Boris Yeltsin had anointed him, Putin made sure that his loyal protégé of 20 years, Dmitry Medvedev, would take his place. Putin took the helm of the country’s dominant political party, United Russia, and then, as prime minister, expanded that position far beyond what the Constitution envisions. Although Putin rearranged the musical chairs, he continued to call the tune. Until now.
The Beeb and Mr. Medvedev
The BBC aired a pathetic excuse for an “interview” with Russian “president” Dmitri Medvedev last week, and concluded by stating:
Who is Dmitry Medvedev really? No single interview can answer that question. But for what it is worth, he seemed to me a man on a journey, and rather more interesting than the Putin front man people describe. He is smart and he is well aware that he is a player in a world dominated by media-savvy rivals, not least the man he is clearly fascinated by, that Mr Obama.
What a charade: This is basic Psych 101 stuff. If Medvedev is a boring nobody, then so is the reporter who is interviewing him, and then why should the viewer care? But if Medvedev is “rather more interesting” . . . It’s also journalism 101, the part about ethics and conflict of interest.
The pathetically vapid nature of the BBC’s written summary of the interview is all the proof you need of how utterly useless the exercise was — and therefore how it played right into the Kremlin’s hands. Given this kind of spineless, idiotic coverage, it’s little wonder the Kremlin thinks it can liquidate KGB defectors on British soil using radiation weapons and get away with it.