Mankind's only alternative 6   OCT.   22  
Mankind's only alternative

The Fall of The eXile For all those wondering what the "Save The eXile Fundrasier" banner is all about, here it is as simply as it can be phrased: The eXile is shutting down.
June 11, 2008 in eXile Blog

War Nerd: War of the Babies in Taki's Magazine The War Nerd talks about babies, the greatest weapon of the 20th century.
May 28, 2008 in eXile Blog

Kids, Meet Your President A website for Russian kids to learn all about President Medvedev's passion for school, sports and family.
May 22, 2008 in eXile Blog

Cellphone Democracy Cam If this girl was exposed to Jeffersonian democracy...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Dyev Photos Yet another hot Russian babe imitating the Catpower look...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

Proof That Genetic Memory Is Real! Sure, the Ottomans shut down the Istanbul Slavic slave markets centuries ago...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Russia's Orthodox Church Youth Outreach Program The priest is going, "Father Sansei is very impressed with grasshopper Sasha’s...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Club Photos w/Russian Dyevs We took the Pepsi Challenge here...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Blogs RSS feed

Unfiled September 8, 2006
Get the hell outta here!
By Kirill Pankratov Browse author

ACTON, MA -- So, you want a revolution?

Only recently, it seems, thoughts like these took place inside of a lot of idle minds, when a few half-stable regimes on Russia's western and southern periphery quivered and sank. Some were planning to continue this drive to revolt into Russia itself. Putin's regime was definitely afraid of the wave of revolutions, and was in disarray for a few months in early 2005. A flock of youth movements was quickly organized, similar to those playing key roles in the "color revolutions" in the post-Soviet world. They didn't catch on, though. An average Russian, even among Moscow's intelligentsia, can hardly name even one of those youth movements, or recall any of their political agendas or actions.

But now, it seems, we have a new anti-establishment player in Russian politics. It is networked, media-savvy, and has many young followers -- the qualities that were instrumental in previous "color revolutions." It is active in the "real world," and in many regions, not just in Moscow clubs and conference-halls. Previously only Limonov's National Bolshevik Party could fit this description. But the NBP is too vague in its agenda, and is split now into rival factions.

The new student-activist organization is far more focused. It is also quite different one from those like Serbia's "Otpor," Georgia's "Kmara," Ukraine's "Pora," or their hapless Russian version, "Oborona." This new important player in Russian politics is DPNI -- the "Movement Against Illegal Immigration." It is not large, and does not have powerful backers or well-known celebrities in its roster. It is often dismissed as a xenophobic fringe and a one-note band. And yet, despite its numerical insignificance, it has more real impact than the other various "youth movements," "think tanks," and other creatures of the Russian political zoo. The DPNI was instrumental in spreading information, organizing crowds, and in formulating demands to the authorities in many recent incidents involving inter-ethnic conflicts. In the last few days, after a violent intra-ethnic brawl in Kandopoga, Karelia in which three local men died in a fight with Caucasian newcomers, the organization hit the front pages big-time.

The summer that just ended was, on the whole, a lazy one by Russian political standards. The ruling regime is well-established, without any serious challenges on the political front, at home or abroad. The "color revolutions" of 2003-4 have long lost their drive. Ukraine descended into a silly stalemate/circus. Victor Yanukovich, the representative of the Russian-speaking eastern part, whose defeat during the "Orange Revolution" was considered a huge humiliation for Putin, is back in the prime minister's seat, with the largest faction in the parliament. Putin triumphantly concluded the G-8 summit, with all his detractors embarrassingly running out of steam.

And yet the, as is usually the case in recent Russian history, August brought new troubles. First, a spate of air crashes highlighted the lousy state of aviation safety today. The first crash happened earlier, in July, in Siberian city of Irkutsk, when an arriving plane suddenly accelerated and overshot a runway and smashed into a building. On August 21, a Tu-154 with 170 people aboard flew into a violent storm over eastern Ukraine and spun out of control, gyrating helplessly downward to its doom.

One day before the Tu-154 crashed into a rain-soaked field near Donetsk, an explosion occurred in the Cherkizovsky market in Moscow, killing 10-plus people. Cherkizovsky has the reputation of one of the messiest, most unruly and criminalized markets in Moscow. It sells everything -- from counterfeit jeans to pirated tapes to fruits and veggies of dubious quality. The explosion occurred in a small cafe in a "Vietnamese" section of the market. At first everybody assumed it was a typical criminal "razborka" that went bad. But the inept perpetrators were quickly caught. They turned out to be young Russian students, driven by hatred towards foreigners. Chemistry students making bombs -- something that didn't bode well 100 years ago in tsarist Russia (see under "Tsar Alexander II, Assassination Of...").

The rising tide of nationalism and ethnic tension is a popular political subject today. When it comes to ethnic tension in Russia, the western and liberal media have only one version applicable to all such cases, without any exception: Russians are always to blame, period. In every conflict involving ethnic relations, no matter who started or who was the victim, it's "xenophobic attitudes" by Russians, "mobs of skinheads" allegedly manipulated by authorities, that are behind it all. One can hardly find any mention of criminal violence perpetrated by Tajik, Azeri, or Chechen immigrants (of which there is plenty), but whenever a dark-skinned immigrant is knifed or beaten on Russian streets, the story gets flogged and replayed over and over as proof of evil Russian chauvinism.

The liberal media is not the only one out of whack. A huge howl quickly spreads throughout Russian "patriotic" papers and blogs, endlessly chewing on the "Russia for Russians" chow, whenever a murder or rape is blamed on "black-assed barbarians". Needless to say, Moscovites aren't too eager to sweep the streets and haul cement on construction sites, where hundreds of thousands of southern arrivistes are employed. But plenty of locals don't want any "darkies" in their vicinity.

Moscow is used to Chechen terrorism -- from relatively small explosions in mid-90's (and plenty of criminal violence) to a series of bomb blasts in 1999, which triggered Putin's ascendance with "tough on terrorism" image. Then there was the terrible siege in the Dubrovka theater in 2002 and several explosions by "black widows" (Chechen female suicide bombers) in various public places. But now suddenly the terror acts by various Russian marginal groups and "Russian fascism" is the talk of the day. It certainly has some foundation, though much overblown by the media.

Last January there was an attack in a large Moscow synagogue. A young man, Alexander Koptsev, entered the synagogue hiding a large kitchen knife and began to attack randomly everybody around. He wounded nine attendees, most of them slightly, before being overpowered. He appeared to be a typical socially disadvantaged youth, without much education or a good steady job. He wasn't active among the various neo-Nazi groupings, but had at his home some anti-Semitic brochures (easily obtained on the streets of Moscow) and computer files. After a speedy trial, Koptsev was sentenced to 13 years in prison.

Yet anti-Semitic violence is fairly rare in Russia -- Koptsev's case (ending without any fatalities) was the worst in many years. Far more problematic is the violence between locals and various ethnic diasporas from the Caucasus or Central Asia. It is getting worse, as more immigrants are coming in, driven by economic opportunities of recent years.

In early August a stand-off between a Dagestani mob and locals occurred in the southern town of Salsk, in the Stavropol region. One local was killed, and the town exploded with rage when a Dagestani suspect in murder was quickly released from custody.

A few days ago a larger disturbance occurred in the small city of Kandapoga near the Finnish border, which started out as a small brawl between locals and Chechen immigrants. What happened was something like the following. A company of locals (probably drunk) were in a bar belonging to some Chechens (probably mafiosi), talking loudly. A Chechen barman tried to calm them down, a verbal altercation ensued, and then a physical one. The barmen ran out and brought help -- a dozen Chechen toughs armed with knives and iron bars. The Chechens reportedly started to attack everybody in sight -- mostly people unrelated to the original brawl. They killed two people, and one more died later in a hospital. After the funeral a large mob of locals (ie: ethnic Russians) gathered near the "Chaika" restaurant where the first fight occurred, and burned it down. They also trashed the local market and a few stores belonging to Caucasian traders. Only then did the police arrest several suspects in the murders, as well as about a hundred of the rioting mob.

The local authorities tried to play down the whole thing. It was the DPNI that helped spread the news, organize an informal town meeting, and keep nationalistic websites and blogs all over Russia in frenzied state (and it shows no signs of abating). The DPNI did this in most other recent conflicts of ethnic Russians with immigrants from the south, getting a lot of experience and a growing following in the process.

So a curious thing happened. The "color revolutions" were driven by organizations often with an explicitly nationalistic agenda, which, in case of the former Soviet "near abroad," were mostly anti-Russian in nature, masked by western liberal rhetoric to gain western backing. But it is hard to imagine a Russian "color revolution" with a similar, anti-Russian, bent. What is more likely and natural in Russia is an organization like DPNI. It can also be viewed in fact as "national liberation" of a sort, with a narrow, nationalistic agenda.

Of course, this is not quite what the liberal and the western media had in mind when they imagined a new opposition to the Putin regime. More unimaginable consequences are yet to come.

SHARE:  Digg  My Web  Facebook  Reddit
Club Review
House Party Hipsters :

The Christ Cup 2002: Pregame Show! :

Exotic Russian Vacations :

Recession Penis :


Save The eXile: The War Nerd Calls Mayday
The future of The eXile is in your hands! We're holding a fundraiser to save the paper, and your soul. Tune in to Gary Brecher's urgent request for reinforcements and donate as much as you can. If you don't, we'll be overrun and wiped off the face of the earth, forever.

Scanning Moscow’s Traffic Cops
Automotive Section
We’re happy to introduce a new column in which we publish Moscow’s raw radio communications, courtesy of a Russian amateur radio enthusiast. This issue, eXile readers are given a peek into the secret conversations of Moscow’s traffic police, the notorious "GAIshniki."

Eleven Years of Threats: The eXile's Incredible Journey
Feature Story By The eXile
Good Night, and Bad Luck: In a nation terrorized by its own government, one newspaper dared to fart in its face. Get out your hankies, cuz we’re taking a look back at the impossible crises we overcame.

Your Letters
Russia's freedom-loving free market martyr Mikhail Khodorkovsky answers some of this week's letters, and he's got nothing but praise for President Medvedev.

Clubbing Adventures Through Time
Club Review By Dmitriy Babooshka
eXile club reviewer Babooshka takes a trip through time with the ghost of Moscow clubbing past, present and future, and true to form, gets laid in the process.

The Fortnight Spin
Bardak Calendar By Jared Lindquist
Jared comes out with yet another roundup of upcoming bardak sessions.

Your Letters
Richard Gere tackles this week's letters. Now reformed, he fights for gerbil rights all around the world.

13 Toxic Talents: Hollywood’s Worst Polluters
America By Eileen Jones
Everybody complains about celebrities, but nobody does anything about them. People, it’s time to stop fretting about whether we’re a celebrity-obsessed culture—we are, we have been, we’re going to be—and instead take practical steps to clean up the celebrity-obsessed culture we’ve got...


    MAIN    |    RUSSIA    |    WAR NERD     |    [SIC!]    |    BAR-DAK    |    THE VAULT    |    ABOUT US    |    RSS

© "the eXile". Tel.: +7 (495) 623-3565, fax: +7 (495) 623-5442