“In Russia, whatever be the appearance of things, violence and arbitrary rule is at the bottom of them all. Tyranny rendered calm by the influence of terror is the only kind of happiness which this government is able to afford its people. If they wish to be recognized by the European nations, and treated as equals, they must begin by submitting to hear themselves judged.”
— Marquis De Custine, Empire of the Czar: A Journey Through Eternal Russia, ch. 37 (1843, rev. 1989).
Some idiot named Daria Chernyshova is writing an occasional column for the irrelevant Moscow News called “A Russian Briefer.” Fortunately for those who are inclined to mirth, as the title alone indicates, it does not seem there is anyone with a native command of the English language who is inclined to assist Ms. Chernyshova with her highly stilted prose, which only helps to make her ridiculous drivel that much more stilted and hysterically ludicrous. Any time you’d like a nice roll on the floor convulsed in uncontrollable fits of laughter, just tune in to Channel Chernyshova (you can also catch her on that bastion of accuracy in Russia reporting, Kremlin-controlled Russia Profile).
We’ll sum her up this way: As a journalist, she’s a great little piece of ass.
In her most recent installment, Chernyshova states:
A group of students are standing next to the examination room. The German asks: “Why don’t they let us enter? They are already 3 minutes late.” An American says, “Can you explain to me the meaning of this?” Finally, the Russian asks: “What exam are we to take today? Please! May I have a look at someone’s notes?” What strikes observers about this approach to our work is that the outcome – when it finally comes – is brilliant. No matter how long a task may take to fulfil, a Russian will eventually get the job done. One wonders how Russians succeed with such an attitude. Though we are mostly Northern residents, our inner passion explains everything.
This is truly Russia in a nutshell. And we do mean nut.
Russia’s Fist in America’s Belly
The major Russian daily newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda has opened a valuable window into Russian society by creating an English-language version of its website. A recent article entitled “Russia’s Fist in America’s Belly” (in Russian “«Русский кулак» под брюхом Америки“) goes a long way in illustrating just how seriously we can take the Kremlin’s claims that it wants a peaceful, cooperative relationship with the West.
For the uninitiated, the newspaper Pravda (“Truth”) was of course one of the basic propaganda organs of the USSR. Along with its counterpart Izvestia (“Information”), these two papers continue operating to this day, without so much as a name change. That alone should tell you quite a lot about how much has really changed in Russia (an old Soviet joke ran: “There’s no information in ‘Truth’ and no truth in ‘Information'”). and Komsomolskaya Pravda is an even more politicized name, since the “komsomol” was the youth indoctrination forum of the Communist Party. It’s as if Germany were still publishing a magazine called “Hitler Youth Life” two decades after the collapse of the Nazi regime.
The Other Russia translates a shocking bit of journalism from the Russian press. Russia is defiling the sacred memory of the 9/11 tragedy with sick, perverted propaganda on state-controlled television. How would Russians like it if America returned the favor with similar broadcasts about Beslan and Dubrovka? Here again is yet another heroic Russian willing to stand up for truth and sanity, risking all to do so. These are the Russians we adore, the country’s last, best hope.
An Open Order
“Zero: an investigation into 9/11,” a film by Italian journalist Giulietta Chiesa and his French colleague Thierry Meyssan, went practically unnoticed in the world. Its authors openly complained about this as they spoke on Channel One, hinting at machinations by America’s intelligence agencies. In Russia, on the other hand, the film was shown on TV on Friday evening, during prime-time – on the “Private Screening” program, which gave it an audience of many millions. In and of itself, this proves that the Cold War is in full swing, at least on Russian television. Mr. Chiesa laments that “the level of democracy in the world is very low. And with every year, it becomes lower and lower.” And that’s why the Italian departed for Russia in search of genuine democracy.
Our regular commenter “Elmer” tips us that the German website Sueddeutsche.de reports as follows (staff translation, corrections welcome):
The Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper has reported an interesting case involving the news channel Russia Today (RT). Its correspondent in Tbilisi, the Briton William Dunbar, mentioned last Saturday in a live broadcast that Russian aircraft were outside of South Ossetia and involved in an attack on the town of Gori, noting that Russian bombs had hit civilian houses. As a result, RT ceased live satellite broadcasts and the 25-year-old Dunbar resigned in protest, telling the newspaper: “The facts did not fit with what Russia Today wanted to broadcast.”
Commenter “Simona” helped correct our translation and points us to Media Network, which quotes Dunbar saying: “I felt that I had no choice but to resign.” He said that he was reporting the facts, but that “the real facts of the matter didn’t conform to what they were trying to report, and therefore they wouldn’t let me report it.”