web analytics

Football Fans in Russia Turn to the Front

Russian football fans unite behind the team “RUSSIA”. They make the support of the country and soldiers their priority.

Russia may not be the most potent football power, but its football fans are known for their ability to unite behind their favourite team. Today they unite behind the team “RUSSIA”. Below is an extract from the Russian football fan club CSKA Vandals address to other fan clubs:

“Dear friends, regardless of your club preferences,

Some of you have long followed the event in Donbass and have already made their contribution to the fight, but for some of you the war is only just beginning to get personal. Now that each of us has seen (or may see) their pals, friends, or relatives go to the front, it is high time to stop having vain hopes and thinking that this war is far enough to pass you by. It won’t. It is time to realise your personal responsibility for the guys at the frontline and for the future of our country and to start helping each other, so as to bring closer the end of fighting and the peace. Better later than never.

Many were emotionally driven by fear to flee the country in haste, but we are staying here, in our homeland, with our near and dear, and with you. From now on we stop any football-linked activity and make the support of our brothers and the victory of Russia our sole priority”.

Translated from Russian by Julia Shuvalova

Other posts On Russia.

The End of Germany?

After today’s attack on Nord Stream it is clear: the powers-that-be are working hard to speed a bitter end for Germany and European industry.

In case you didn’t know, Germany was once the most powerful state in Europe. It was called the Holy Roman Empire and it existed from 962 until dissolved by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1806.

Russia traditionally established matrimonial unions with Germany in the 18th and the 19 th centuries; and so did Britain. However, following the demise of the HRE, Germany gradually became an anti-Russian actor in the European political theatre. Great Britain habitually drove a wedge between the two countries, assisted by France. The two bloodiest conflicts of the 20th century occurred between Germany and Russia, leading to significant losses in population, a separation of Germany, and a long-term economic regeneration of the countries.

21st century and Nord Stream

In the last 50 years there was a glimpse of hope for the future relations between Russia and Germany. However, as we can see now, the very idea of the European Union has been to ensure there would not be a single powerful state on the European continent. Scandinavian countries naturally “withdraw” from continental politics. Britain officially left the EU in 2020. Germany was pinpointed as the new leading power in Europe. Yet after today’s attack on three lines of Nord Stream it is clear: the powers-that-be are working hard to speed a bitter end for Germany and European industry.

The occurrence has already been called an act of economic terrorism. The US have previously indicated that they were going to destroy Nord Stream. It is clear that the USA and Great Britain worked together to hammer this “fizzy” bolt into the European economy. Now that Nord Stream is out of order Europe will have either no gas at all, or it will have to buy it from Britain and the US at an extremely high price.

Economic Piracy in 2022

Worse yet – and there is some analysis on this – this attack to destroy Nord Stream is to have some very sinister consequences. German investors have already turned to the US; now the business and engineers will have to turn there, too. If they cannot live and work in the coldness of European winter, they have to migrate… to the US.

This is more or less what the Soviet people experienced in 1990s, following the demise of the USSR. A lot of people left the country in search for better opportunities and salaries, often going to the US. Now the same is about to happen to Germany, which country, significantly, became united at the expense of the USSR collapse.

The Swedish seismologists acknowledge that there was no underwater earthquake in the area of the gas leak, and that the resulting ruptures in the pipes were caused by explosions, Meanwhile, the Polish ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs Radek Sikorski has posted this picture on Twitter.

The US and its satellites don’t even conceal their terrorist attack – on Germany, Europe, and peace. Such is the price you pay for adhering to Realpolitik. You endlessly create an enemy to exist.

Other posts in History

Mobilization in Russia and Thoughts on the “Flight”

While mobilization is underway, some people chose to flee Russia. The majority’s sentiment towards them is disdain.

Something we have expected from February is now happening. The mobilization has started in Russia last Wednesday, and today the reserve officers have departed for the training centres. A lot of experts were arguing for it since the beginning of the Special Military Operation, but I believe there is time for everything. Now is the time for Russian men to protect the newly-freed territories of Donbass and the Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions.

The new “Flight”

Meanwhile, some people chose to flee Russia back in February, and some are leaving now. If you want to know the sentiment of the majority of Russians towards this “flight”, it is mostly a disdain.

People often confuse the government and the country. Whereas the love and support for the country often mean the approval of the government, the attitude to the government doesn’t equal the attitude to the country, its people and culture. I may dislike the government for some of its (in)actions but my love for my country will not let me seek the revolution.

The effect of globalization and “democratization” has been such that the notions of national pride and patriotism have been mocked for years on end. Yet, as the recent events show, they have not become obsolete or redundant. Having something to be proud of is pertinent to a man. Having a role model is vital for self-development. And love for a country is the same as love for a family. This is what we see in Serbia – and in Italy, following the victory of the Brothers of Italy.

Alas, as we see today, the institute of a family is being destroyed in Europe and America, and love for the country is considered a manifestation of racism. In truth, however, loving the country, one’s family and compatriots is healthy and indicates a high degree of self-awareness and development, for this love prepares you to sacrifice many things for your loved one. Including your love.

Patriots Abroad

The reason why the Russian government is not preventing those fleeing the country from doing so is quite obvious. We don’t need cowards, we don’t need those who may work to destroy the country from within. We want real men, real citizens who love their country and their compatriots.

Someone I studied with at the Lomonosov MSU went to Turkey in February. He studied Art History, so obviously he considers himself a mouthpiece of the Russian “intelligentzia“. Recently he felt the urge to express his attitude to the military operation, Putin, and all of us who have not fled the country. We, he said, are his enemies.

Well, if so, then he and his co-thinkers are better off to be away from the Russian horde. However, I reminded him about the General Denikin who fled Russia in the aftermath of the Civil War but who one of the first to provide financial assistance to the Soviet State during the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945). The Russian composer Sergey Rachmaninov also donated his concert money to the USSR throughout the war years until his death in 1943. This is what he wrote in letters from 1941-1942:

November 19, 1941: “This is the only way in which I can express my compassion for the sufferings of the people of my homeland”.

March 25, 1942: “From one of the Russians – here is my assistance to the Russian nation in its fight against the enemies. I want to believe, and I do believe, in complete victory”.

Following the victory at Stalingrad, 1943, Rachmaninov addressed Joseph Stalin with a short letter:

“I am now confident that my Motherland will defeat the agressors. I also admire the fact that despite its greatest ordeal the musical culture of fighting Russia, including that of the Russian nation, continues to enthrall the world, it is alive and continues to develop. I am willing to accept that we were probably wrong in the early 1920s when we thought that the Russian art was doomed to be destroyed or degraded”.

Mobilization

So, mobilization is going well. The soldiers are not being sent straight to the front. They first arrive at the training camp and it is not certain that they will actually go to fight. The territories of Donbass and other two regions need the people militia and other male help. The link will take you to a report in Telegram of Moscow reserve soldiers departing for Donbass. As for those “scared patriots” who chose to leave their homeland, we kind-heartedly mock them. They still have not realised that nobody wants them in either Europe or America. But I would also close the boundary, for we want to live, make families and do business with reliable people. I wouldn’t want anyone who chose to run away to ever come back and claim back their workplaces and chairs.

Likewise, there is more than one military operation going on at the moment. There is a lot to do within the country, in Moscow alone, in the spheres of civil life, e.g. education, health service, etc. So, we have all been mobilized, but, as the events of the bygone days show, we will conquer Mars after this Victory. Watch this space (sic!)

Other posts on Ukraine and Russia.

Thoughts on Sts Peter and Paul’s Day

Today we celebrated the Day of two Christian saints, Peter and Paul. Peter was one of Jesus’s disciples who tried to emulate his master and follow him in his footsteps but couldn’t quite do so. He was afraid to walk on water, and, despite his own expectations, refuted Jesus three times. Following the Resurrection, he became the leader of disciples and an ardent professor of faith.

Saul, on the other hand, was a staunch persecutor of Christians until the angel knocked him down and revealed God’s will. And so Saul became Paul and wrote many epistles to pagans and Christians alike. Caravaggio’ The Conversion of Saul depicts the moment of epiphany.

Both eventually martyred: Peter was crucified head down (at his own request), and Paul was beheaded for he was a Ronan citizen. As a result, Paul is often depicted with a sword, as in this painting by El Greco.

Paul may also be depicted with a book which is a nod to his literary activity, and Peter is portrayed with the keys to Kingdom of Heaven in his hand. In this Russian icon another aspect is noticeable: Peter is older and is always on the left side of the picture.

The saints were celebrated in Russia practically since the Christening, and the Cathedral of St Sophia in Kiev has the earliest surviving image of Peter in what was Ancient Rus.

The popular expression says “Peter and Paul reduce the day by an hour”. By August 2nd, St Elijah’s Day, the day will have lost two hours, which is commemorated in another expression.

The story of Peter and Paul is that of a person’s following his or her vocation with faith. At the beginning of this short fasting period I went to St Clement of Rome’s church where I wrote down something of my own epiphany, that Christianity is not about suffering but about faith and service. When one has found their vocation, they should follow it, not in the hope to martyr or to die a peaceful death, but in the determination to fulfill their vocation. Martyrdom or a good death is not the end in itself; the vocation is. The story of Peter and Paul is a good illustration of this thesis. After all, there were St Nicholas and St Spyridon of Trimythous who died a peaceful death but whose contribution to Christianity was no less than that of the apostles’.

There are two lessons Peter and Paul teach us. One, follow your vocation. And two, none of us is ever good enough for a task. Peter betrayed Christ but came to be the guardian of the heavenly Kingdom. Saul used to destroy Christians but eventually became the most ardent propagator of a new religion. Whatever we used to do in the past, we can always change our ways and start anew.

The United States against China

The real conflict will see the United States against China. It remains to be seen if China will act ahead, like Russia did in February 2022.

While the Western media are (mis)interpreting the Ukrainian conflict, the real battle is getting brewed far from the Ukrainian-Russian border. It is the conflict of the United States against China. It remains to be seen if China will act ahead, like Russia did in February.

The new superpowers clash

I found an interesting article in one of Russian Telegram channels, so I decided to translate it. It offers a complex look at this week’s events that saw Boris Johnson’s resignation, Shinzo Abe’s assassination, and Olaf Scholz’s scandalous party.

The Russian original text.

The main topic of the week has been the hegemon’s blow to the forces that are trying to withdraw their countries from the American protectorate and pursue an independent policy.

Boris Johnson was the first to fall, although his forced resignation is presented as a voluntary act. Although he may be seen as Russia’s principal enemy in the Ukrainian conflict, it is worth recognizing that he acted purely in the interests of Great Britain, “gnawing out” his country’s sphere of influence in Eastern Europe by taking over the territories abandoned by the United States.

Next came the assassination of the Japanese ex-Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe. He ardently supported the strengthening of his country’s independence, as far as it was possible in the state abundantly stuffed with American military bases. The actions of his guards are considered as, at least, incompetent, and many experts claim it is highly likely that their ineffectiveness was in fact an act of complicity in Abe’s murder.

And the third blow of the hegemon, whom many are in a haste to bury alive, was the scandal with drugged girls at the party of Olaf Scholz. The German Chancellor, as well as the previously mentioned leaders, has tried to lead an independent course for his country. He delayed the supply of weapons to Ukraine, tried to save the German economy and to do business with Russia to the very last minute. If this scandal serves its purpose to the full (i.e. Scholz’s resignation), then the next German leader will think twice before trying to play independently.

Thus, there are practically no countries left in the world that attempted to claim leadership, albeit regional, and did not receive a “punch in the mouth”. Russia battles its sanctions, Turkey has to deal with hyperinflation and the Kurds, and Erdogan is certainly not guaranteed to remain on his “throne”. Japan has lost her Abe, Great Britain her Johnson, and Germany may lose Scholz. Among the major regional players, Emmanuel Macron’s position has been relatively stable so far, but it is quite possible that he has given guarantees to the hegemon that he would not expand the zone of influence beyond French Africa.

The main battle of the century between the American Eagle and the Chinese Dragon now lies ahead. The United States wants to plunge the entire world into chaos so as to prevent anyone from “cashing in” on their upcoming conflict with China. Perhaps China is not against this scenario. The new (or the good old) hegemon will come out badly battered from this conflict and may become an easy prey for regional states that do not have any problems, which means that such powers must be eliminated beforehand. Each regional power will deal with its own problems, and they will not be up to the fight between the United States and China for world domination.

Other posts in History and News

The Church of the Presentation of the Virgin in Barashy

The church of the Presentation of the Virgin in Barashy was built between 1688 and 1701. It can be accessed from Pokrovka St, close to the Kremlin.

The church of the Presentation of the Virgin in Barashy was built between 1688 and 1701. However, a church used to exist here as early as the 15th century. It belonged to Andronikov monastery until the tsar Ivan III granted it the lands beyond the Yauza River in exchange of this church. It can be accessed from Pokrovka St and is therefore located fairly close to Red Square and the Kremlin.

Barashy was a special area, a sloboda, where lived the tsar’s servants who accompanied him on his journeys and campaigns. They carried the so called “soft stuff”, or tents, which they put up and took down. The Russian word “barakhlo” is evidently related.

The church that we can presently see was built and decorated in the style of the Moscow Baroque. Its splendid architecture includes corniches, entablements and archivolts, columns and “kokoshniks”. The bell-tower was added during a restoration of 1741. Another round of restorative works took place between 1815 and 1837 when the church was slightly enlarged and a new iconostasis was consecrated.

The church’s two chapels are dedicated to Holy Martyr Longinus the Centurion and St Elijah the Prophet. As a matter of fact, close to the church there was lyinskaya sloboda (the sloboda of Elijah) that belonged to Russian tsars.

The church of the Presentation of the Virgin in Barashy stands in the Bely Gorod, or the White City, a historical part of Moscow where resided the aristocracy and the tsar’s (later – the emperor’s) servants.

In the Soviet times the church was to be demolished, and so several icons were saved by the Tretyakov Gallery. Miraculously, it was not destroyed although it first housed a hostel for workers and then – an electric plant. The restoration works began in 1976, and the sermons resumed in 1993. Between 2015 and 2021 here resided the Metropolis of Chișinău and All Moldova.

Wikipedia: Russian, French.

The church’s official website.

More photos.

More posts in Moscow churches.

Victory Day – 2022

Victory Day Parade and the Immortal Regiment have returned to Red Square on May 9, 2022. We celebrate this day with our veterans and children.

Today we celebrate the 77th anniversary of Victory against Nazi regimes in Europe. We should not forget that Nazist and Fascist ideologies swept across the whole of Europe. Soviet troops coming from the East and inner Resistance movements worked to extort inhuman regimes not only from Germany, but from France, Italy, and other European countries. Sadly, they were not always successful, and in Spain General Franco’s regime survived until 1970s.

But we celebrate our Victory, and we shall not let anyone to dispute, distort, diminish, or altogether deny it.

Victory Day

The Immortal Regiment has returned to the streets of Russian towns and cities, as well as to those countries whose leaders were not afraid to pay homage to the courage and selfless service of the Soviet soldiers. And we shall not forget this.

The Immortal Regiment marching in Tverskaya St, Moscow, 9 May, 2022

And if you want to watch Moscow’s Victory Day Parade, below is a video by one of Russian media channels, TASS. The organisers had to cancel the aerial parade due to overcast. The Immortal Regiment soaked wet in a short spell of heavy rain, but then the sun came out, and it has not rained since 3pm this afternoon.

Victory Day Parade in Red Square, May 9, 2022

As per tradition, special civil memorial services were held in all districts near the cenotaphs and monuments. These commemorate soldiers and civilians who gave up their lives to save the world.

More on Russia.

The Allies’ Approved Of the Death of Children – Remember this, Mr Blinken

In memory of thousands of children who were killed by the Nazi army – and by the allies’ appeasement – we will always remember and remind others of the real price of British and American Imperialist interests.

In his address on the occasion of the 77th anniversary of the Victory in the Second World War, the U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken notably accused the Russian Federation of thwarting the events of the bygone days to “justify” a special operation against the neo-Nazi government of Ukraine.

Yes, I know that in the West the war is thought to have been fought and won by Britain and the U.S. It is also a well-known secret that Britain and the U.S., the so-called allies, were waiting to see whom to support, Hitler or Stalin. By doing so, they donned their taciturn support to Hitler. This was these nations’ own “war effort” until it became clear that the Red Army was about to sweep across Europe in its victorious march. The allies jumped on the bandwagon to keep the Western part of Europe in their sphere of interests.

The Victory in the Second World War is unthinkable without the USSR for the simplest reason: the allies were clearly going to collaborate with Hitler, had he suppressed the USSR. And it was only because the USSR courageously fought for its independence and sovereignty that we have been celebrating the Victory over Nazism for the last 77 years. Unfortunately, we are fighting against the same plague now – and we are going to win again, this time decisively.

So, lest the Secretary of State Mr Blinken forgets what the allies’, and particularly the American, war effort was really like, here are pictures of Soviet Russian children near their ruined and burnt houses in 1941-1943. Such was the beginning of life for these children – death, hunger, and ruins. And it was because the allies were calmly waiting to see whose side to join.

A woman with her children on the site of their destroyed house in Orlov Region, Russia
Russian children of the Great Patriotic War

The Russian soldiers fought not only for their Motherland, as we call our native country. They fought for these children, they took revenge for their ravaged childhood, and it was the Russian soldiers who raised the red Victory banner over the Reichstag as the symbol of Victory against Evil. Sadly, the evil has since resurrected, so the Russian soldiers will have to raise the banner again.

The Soviet soldier raising the Red Banner over the Reichstag in Berlin, May 2, 1945

We have never taken revenge on the dead enemy, and we have always striven to keep peace with the living adversaries. But in memory of thousands of children who were killed by the Nazi army – and by the allies’ appeasement – we will always remember and remind others of the real price of British and American Imperialist interests.

The price has been the death and poverty of children – everywhere, from Europe in two World Wars to Vietnam, Middle East, Serbia, and Donbass, throughout the entire 20th and 21st century. This must end soon.

The Alley of Angels in Donetsk, the People’s Republic of Donetsk (former Ukraine), commemorates children killed in the shellings and bombings by the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The average age is 5 years.

More on Ukraine.

More on Russia.

Ukraine: My Views + My Contacts

I support Russia’s special operation against the neo-Fascist regime in Ukraine and its war crimes against the Ukrainian population.

I moved to my vKontakte account in April. I have been busy with work and, on the other hand, I wanted to gather the sentiment about the unfolding events in Ukraine.

This is Kiev’s Maidan place back in 2014.

In brief, this is what I have to say:

  1. I support Russia’s special operation against the neo-Fascist regime in Ukraine. In the years since the first negotiations in Minsk all the opportunities to peacefully resolve the conflict in Donbass have been exhausted. Meanwhile, not only did Ukraine legally proclaim the criminals of WW2 as the country’s national heroes, it has also opened the doors to experiments with biological weapons in its territory. As you might remember, my maternal grandfather was born in Ukraine, and his parents were the prisoners of war in Germany. I sympathise with the people of Ukraine insofar as they have not managed to organize anything similar to the Resistance movement of the past war, so they now have to hide in cellars instead of helping the Russian army. But I do not sympathise with anyone who wants to somehow draw a line between the country and its legislation. In case with Ukraine, the legislation has commemorated those who orchestrated the carnage in Poland, Belarus, and Ukraine itself. And I personally do not want to tolerate this for whatever reason.
  2. Secondly, I realise that I have not written much about it here, for this blog has always been about Arts&Culture, not a place to discuss dubious Wikipedia articles on politics. But things are different now. The first thing I want you to know – especially those of you who have known me for a while – is that, since I returned to Moscow in 2010, I have always voted for Vladimir Putin. I voted for the new Constitution of Russia in 2020. I support the idea of a strong national state. And I certainly stand for the idea of internationalism and the national equality. I have always supported these ideas, and I have always cited the Equal Opportunities Act in Europe as an example of a guarantee of equality to various minorities. But I cannot support the present-day “cancel culture” whereby The Russian Dancers by Edgar Degas are renamed into The Ukrainian Dancers by the National Gallery, and the works of Tchaikovsky are withdrawn from concerts. I cannot and will not support this morone attack on my country and my values.
  3. Finally, for now, I’d like to leave all you intellectual and open-minded people with one question to answer. I first came across the British mentality and culture in 2000. For the past 22 years I have often heard you slagging off the British and American media for bias and lies. You are aware that your media and your governments can lie just about anything – from little-known celebrities to biological weapons in Iraq. Why now, then, do you believe everything you see and read about what is happening in Ukraine? You are now listening to the talk about “the Ukrainian Srebrenica” – and you don’t even pay attention to the fact that the NATO country, in cold blood, uses the NATO’s war crime incident to draw parallels with today’s carnage! It was so hard to effectively divert the world’s attention from biolaboratories in Ukraine that the NATO media were not too proud to use their own war crime to put it on Russia.

Of course, in this day and age I will have to take precautions, so I will double my posts here on my LCJ page in vKontakte. I don’t use VPN, so I will not be able to answer any comments on Facebook or Twitter. But you can contact me by email, and I will take the opportunity to be your first-hand source of news and commentary.

As you may notice, I do not blame anyone for their views. Indeed, there is often a huge chasm between the Anglo-Saxon view of things – and that of the rest of the world. I do not expect anyone to turn against their media or government just because I say something. But I keep being told that we, Russians, are brainwashed by the Kremlin propaganda. Well, perhaps, it’s not just the Kremlin that engages in propaganda – and we, Russians, are not the only victims thereof.

First Space Flight: 60TH Anniversary

First space flight meant more than just overcoming the gravity. Gagarin showed the working class that everyone had a chance in life.

Ten years later I’m writing a post on the 60th anniversary of the first space flight.This year a Russian self-publishing platform, Litres.Samizdat, and Roskosmos, the Russian Space Agency, organised a contest of short stories. They had to be about space exploration, or dreaming about space, and to generally fall into the category of sci-fi stories. My story was short-listed for a book, but it was not about space exploration as such. It was about David Bowie’s composing Space Oddity, although it mentions the first space flight.

first-space-flight
The International Space Day

It is a well-known fact that Bowie struggled to break through onto the music scene. I was inspired to use it as a backdrop for my story, which came out to be a reflection on what Yuri Gagarin’s first space flight really meant for mankind. It wasn’t just a flight into space, overcoming the gravity; it was, quite literally, a flight in the face of all conventions and restrictions, especially social and economic. Gagarin, a son of a carpenter and a milkmaid, showed the working class that everyone had a chance for a break-through, no matter the background.

A synopsys:

London, 1969. Psychedelics, hippies and space flights inspire a young musician who can’t compose his first hit song and is suffering from misunderstanding and loneliness. One day, in a pub, he meets a red-haired dockworker who, like him, is living a dream of space. From a single conversation Space Oddity, one of the main “cosmic” songs, is born.

It’s only available in Russian at the moment, so if you know the language, please read it here. If you wish to help me out with the English translation (and be credited for it), please, drop me a line.

julia-shuvalova-space-o
The book cover

My previous posts about Space

Jodrell Bank touched the stars and starts into Euro Space Mission

Life in Space: the anniversaries of satellites and search engines

Poekhali by Yuri Gagarin to become a trademark

Georgy Beregovoy – Space Begins on Earth

Yuri Gagarin’s First Orbit – A Film

The 50th anniversary of the first manned orbit

error: Sorry, no copying !!