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The anniversary of Yeltsin’s death, perhaps, is one of those events that is simply impossible to avoid paying attention to. It might be possible in theory, and one might even want to, but it doesn’t happen. Why? Because fundamental changes in the life of the Russian world are connected with the Yeltsin name. To start with, we will refrain from defining these changes in any particular way. The events surrounding the anniversary of the death of Russia’s first president are interesting in their own right. A monument to Yeltsin, completed by the sculptor Georgy Frangulyan, was unveiled at the Novodevichy cemetery with...

23.04.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: History

On April 14, 1682 (Gregorian calendar), the archpriest Avvakum was burned at the stake in the Pustozyorsk prison. While the date has never been given special attention in Russia’s historical calendar, the event itself – the violent execution of one of Russia’s most prominent ideologues – unleashed a schism that has remained in historical and cultural memory. Avvakum is a colossal part of Russian life, one that is impossible to circumvent when trying to understand the twists and turns of Russian history. Outside Old Believer circles, part of the interest in Avvakum can be explained by the same sort of mechanisms that...

15.04.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: History

The first Soviet monument in Kaliningrad, apart from the obelisks marking mass graves, was not the monument to Stalin (1953) or the monument to Lenin that replaced it in 1958. It was a bust of General Alexander Suvorov erected in 1946 at the site of the demolished castle of the Masters of the Teutonic Order. The memory of Alexander Suvorov was very popular in the late Stalin years. However, for the population of Kaliningrad, the newly acquired part of the Soviet state, the famous military leader was not only a symbol of the triumphant traditions of Russian arms. After the Seven Years War, K...

09.04.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: History

On March 24, 1999, the NATO operation against Yugoslavia started. With  unprecedented cynicism, NATO strategists called it Merciful Angel. As a result of the airstrikes, more than 500 civilians were killed. The economic damage caused to Serbia has been estimated at $1 billion. The airstrikes destroyed a large number of not only military, but also civil assets, including the Belgrade TV Center and TV Tower, hospitals and fire engine stations, oil refineries and power stations, factories and plants, including chemical and pharmaceutical ones, agricultural production storage facilities and grain elevators, bridges, highways, railway...

24.03.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: History

Metropolitan Laurus, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, has passed away – and this is a sad event, much like any other passing. However, the grief caused by this lamentable occasion is coupled with positive feelings. Metropolitan Laurus managed to complete the most vital deed – the rapprochement of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad and the Moscow Patriarchate, which has become the most crucial event for Russian Orthodoxy over the past decade. Metropolitan Laurus was born in 1928 in Slovakia and linked his life with the Russian Orthodox Church. Of course there have been many other important events, but the...

17.03.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: Diaspora

March 13, 1869, is considered to be the day when Dmitry Mendeleev completed his work on the Periodic Table of Elements. This table represented the most vital and personal achievement of Russian science for all students of the Soviet and post-Soviet era. At least, the table hanging on the wall of chemistry classrooms, often featuring Mendeleev with his long grey hair and impressive beard, established clear visual contact with the scientist. One could not help glancing at a picture at least once during a lesson. On top of that, close scrutiny of his table was the only chemistry-related skill achieved by many pupils at chemistry...

13.03.2008
Rubric: Articles
Subject: Science

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