asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

Well, it seems Russia will not only refrain from retaliating to the US expelling some of its diplomats in response for the alleged Russian meddling in the US election - but Putin has also disregarded his foreign minister's recommendation to reciprocate, and will keep all US diplomats in place, and even invite their kids to the traditional New Year's festivities in the Kremlin:

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/russia-us-35-diplomats-expelled-9536358

This is a very calculated move by Putin. Despite the fact that he is a dictator, it's also doubtless that Putin is an astute leader who can assess the situation very quickly - unlike newly elected leader Trump who seems incompetent on virtually any issue. Putin wants to show himself as the good guy here, and I think Trump will no doubt take this bait rather easily.

 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

On the day when a rampant terrorist shot the Russian ambassador in Turkey dead, the Russian people didn't give a damn about that news, as much as they were shaken by other news coming from the heart of Siberia. And there's good reason they cared about it so much, because it directly impacts their sense of safety and security - to such an extent that the local authorities declared a state of emergency in Irkutsk, banning all liquid sales. The reason? 60+ people went to meet their creator after having ingested fake alcohol. And that's not just some obscure footnote in some online media, it's the News.Ru being the first to report on it. So it must matter a lot, guys!

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

Those who organised yesterday's shooting of Andrey Karlov, the Russian ambassador in Turkey, likely wanted to take a revenge at Russia for her actions in Syria and to disrupt the ongoing warming up between Turkey and Russia. It seems they have failed in this, because no signs of another freezing of these relations are seen. The Turkish foreign minister is still going to visit Moscow for a trilateral meeting with Iran and Russia on Syria. The only thing the assassination will change is probably the level of security measures before the meeting.

 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

In late November, the canals of St. Petersburg, the so called Northern Venice, are covered in ice. The few hours of sunshine and the extremely low temperatures make these days quite an ordeal. The ambulances crisscross the city in search of hobos and drunken people, taking them off the streets to prevent deaths from frostbite. Every winter about 600 people die on the streets of St. Petersburg, and that's not counting all those who've had their limbs amputated, and other victims of frost.

 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

We've all become perfectly aware by now that the EU has been under increasing pressure from hostile Russian propaganda, which threatens to undermine its relations with its partners, to block important decisions, and generally damage the credibility of the major European institutions by instilling fear and a sense of insecurity among the EU citizens. The purpose is to cause discord within the EU, and put its democratic values in question - and the means that the Russian government is using to achieve that are various, from think-tanks, to multilingual TV channels (RT), to pseudo information agencies and multimedia sources (Sputnik), trans-border social groups and religious organizations, to social media and internet trolls, and of course funding political parties (mostly Euroskeptic and right-wing) and populist movements.

That's basically what the part about Russia in the EU's recent report on Strategic Communication With A View To Counteracting Propaganda Against It By Third Countries says. This EU resolution only has an advisable character and doesn't impose anything on anybody, instead it recommends urgent measures for countering hostile propaganda, without prescribing bans on free speech or any such thing. All it does is identify a problem, and propose possible solutions within the law.

 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

Scared of the little green men in green uniforms without any signs on them, are we? Don't know where they're coming from and what they want from us, eh? East Europe trembles with the shaking ground under their boots, and prepares to eat the dust from under their heels. The angry bear is stirring, and is preparing for a predator leap: RRRAWR! But this time it's masked, it has no insignia, and it uses RT to convince the world that it's actually not a bear, but a mere lamb. You gotta believe it, or else!

zx620y348_2379346
 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

Since recently I've been hearing the talking points of some Russophiles both at home and abroad taking precedence over common sense, I've bothered to do some work in summing up some facts, which I hope would help put those Putinite talking points into perspective. Because the Russian propaganda ain't sleeping for a minute, definitely not around these latitudes. Just a disclaimer: the lines below are not directed at the Russian people as a people. Indeed, they're quite lovely people when taken individually. What I can't approve of is the way that nation has allowed itself to be ruled for centuries, and the results that've come out of it. So do bear with my diatribe.

 

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asthfghl: (Слушам и не вярвам на очите си!)

Communal apartments, or Kommunalky. You can see most major Russian cities being encircled by those mastodons of Socialist-realist architecture. They look grand, imposing, intimidating even. But what's life like in those? And I do mean *is*, not *was*. Because a huge chunk of the Russian people still live there. I've been to Moscow over a dozen times through the years, but I must admit this is the first time that I've come to know Russians so intimately.

st03-03

 

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