Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Theater of the Absurb: Recent pieces, under Questioning Russophile eyes, on Ukraine and Sochi


A Final Nail in the USSR Coffin? Thank You From NATO, Vladimir Vladimirovich!

 Posted April 14, 2014 | 12:11 PM (Huffington Post)

Life and a Coffin
Russian president (for life?) Vladimir Putin, perhaps unknowingly, is putting a final nail in the coffin of the performer (artist is too strong a word) formerly known as the Soviet Union.
1. By acquiring an economic basket case, Crimea -- and perhaps...


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Tsar Vladimir's Masks in Ukraine

--Image from, with caption: We Russian liberators are so popular we have to wear masks so people won’t kiss us.

Regarding the Oprichnina during Ivan the Terrible's reign:
"Thus," commented a Livonian knight who took service under the Tsar, "they prepared the whip and the birch with their own hands and all those ... devil-masks before which all the spiritual and secular orders bowed down."
--From: Robert Payne and Nikita Romanoff, Ivan the Terrible (2012), p. 226

In Eisenstein's film, Ivan the Terrible, Part II (1946):
The Oprichnina, Ivan's secret police, dance raucously at a banquet, let by Fyodor Romanov wearing a mask ...
--From Carrie J. Preston, Modernism's Mythic Pose: Gender, Genre, Solo Performance  (2011), p. 96

--From: GILA MONSTA, oprichnina

A note on Ukraine/Crimea/Aksyonov (John Brown's Notes and Essays)

Rather surprising that among the Western pundits I've read (and there are so many of them, the pundits!) speculating on Ukraine none of them has mentioned Aksyonov's "Ostrov krym"

in connection with the recent events in that part of the world. Here's a plot summary of a quite remarkable (and humorous) book:
In The Island of Crimea, set on the Crimean peninsula, Aksyonov imagines that Crimea is an autonomous society separated from the Soviet Union. The novel is another social satire reliant on a stretch of the imagination, but it is deemed less surrealistic and far-fetched than Aksyonov's previous works.

 Posted February 2, 2014 | 4:53 PM (Huffington Post)
FROM: The Directorate, CIA
TO: The President of the United States
SUBJECT: Sochi Olympics
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: By Executive Order, illegal or not, POTUS should reschedule the National Football League (NFL) Super Bowl (February 2) to Sochi, where the Winter Olympic Games are opening in...

Sochi, Tsar Vladimir's Black Sea St. Vladimirsburg

(0) Comments | Posted January 6, 2014 | 4:22 PM (Huffington Post)

It is not unimportant to remember, in connection with the controversial Winter Olympics soon to be held in Sochi in the Russian Federation, that President Vladimir Putin hails from St. Petersburg, the city (in the Soviet era known as Leningrad) created in the early 18th century by Peter the Great...

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