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Semyon Grigoriev the Russian head of the Museum of Mammoths of the Institute of Applied Ecology at the North Eastern Federal University has been featured by George Dvorsky in an article published on io9 titled ‘Russians Recover Fresh Flowing Mammoth Blood’. Dvorsky states “About 15,000 years ago, an old female wooly mammoth plunged through the ice as she was being chased by predators. Her remains have now been uncovered by scientists working in Siberia. And remarkably, as they were digging it out, blood began to stream out. Which is weird given that it was 10° below freezing. It's not known if the blood or tissue samples contain living cells required for cloning. And even if such cells are recovered, the DNA repair would require a very complex process that could take years. …Semyon Grigoriev…is calling it "the best preserved mammoth in the history of paleontology." During the excavation, and as the researchers were chipping away at the ice, they noticed splotches of dark blood in the ice cavities below the mammoth’s belly. When they broke through with a poll pick, blood started to flow out. "It can be assumed that the blood of mammoths had some cryo-protective properties,” noted Grigoriev. Mammoth blood, it would appear, contains a kind of anti-freeze. This is consistent with work done by Canadian geneticists who in 2010 showed that mammoth hemoglobin releases its oxygen much more readily at cold temperatures than that of modern elephants. In addition to the blood, the paleontologists also recovered well-preserved muscle tissue. The scientists say it has a natural red color of fresh meat. The blood is currently undergoing a bacteriological analysis, and the results are expected soon. Based on the preliminary evidence, the scientists say the female wooly mammoth was anywhere from 50 to 60 years old and weighed about three tons. They theorize that she was trying to escape from predators when she fell through the ice, or that she got bogged down in a swamp.”  Inspired by George Dvorsky, io9 ow.ly/lEbpp Image source CBC ow.ly/lEbnj Best preserved mammoth in history (June 24 2013)

 

Semyon Grigoriev the Russian head of the Museum of Mammoths of the Institute of Applied Ecology at the North Eastern Federal University has been featured by George Dvorsky in an article published on io9 titled ‘Russians Recover Fresh Flowing Mammoth Blood’. Dvorsky states “About 15,000 years ago, an old female wooly mammoth plunged through the ice as she was being chased by predators. Her remains have now been uncovered by scientists working in Siberia. And remarkably, as they were digging it out, blood began to stream out. Which is weird given that it was 10° below freezing. It’s not known if the blood or tissue samples contain living cells required for cloning. And even if such cells are recovered, the DNA repair would require a very complex process that could take years. …Semyon Grigoriev…is calling it “the best preserved mammoth in the history of paleontology.” During the excavation, and as the researchers were chipping away at the ice, they noticed splotches of dark blood in the ice cavities below the mammoth’s belly. When they broke through with a poll pick, blood started to flow out. “It can be assumed that the blood of mammoths had some cryo-protective properties,” noted Grigoriev. Mammoth blood, it would appear, contains a kind of anti-freeze. This is consistent with work done by Canadian geneticists who in 2010 showed that mammoth hemoglobin releases its oxygen much more readily at cold temperatures than that of modern elephants. In addition to the blood, the paleontologists also recovered well-preserved muscle tissue. The scientists say it has a natural red color of fresh meat. The blood is currently undergoing a bacteriological analysis, and the results are expected soon. Based on the preliminary evidence, the scientists say the female wooly mammoth was anywhere from 50 to 60 years old and weighed about three tons. They theorize that she was trying to escape from predators when she fell through the ice, or that she got bogged down in a swamp.”

 

Inspired by George Dvorsky, io9 ow.ly/lEbpp Image source CBC ow.ly/lEbnj

Sergey Karaganov the Russian political scientist who heads the Council for Foreign and Defence Policy, a security analytical institution, and has been Presidential Advisor to both Boris Yeltsin and Vladimir Putin, has published an article on the Project Syndicate titled ‘Fatal Thaws’. Karaganov states “During the Cold War, the Soviet Union and, in a milder way, the United States imposed external limits on the activities of states and societies, causing longstanding conflicts among smaller countries to be “frozen”. Following the Soviet Union’s collapse in the 1990’s, those conflicts began to “unfreeze”. With interethnic tensions already on the rise, Yugoslavia was the first country to dissolve into conflict. Soon after, war broke out between Armenia and Azerbaijan, followed by fighting in Transdniestria and Chechnya. … Most threatening, however, is the possibility that the EU could collapse, triggering a third unfreezing. The EU, established to break the destructive cycle of European nationalism that had facilitated the rise of two totalitarian systems and caused two world wars, amounted to the creation of a prototype of a humane world order. After being its own – and thus the world’s – worst enemy for centuries, Europe became a beacon of peace. …At the same time, Europeans must prepare for an even more profound transformation. In order to regain economic competitiveness, European countries will have to abandon many of their social-welfare policies and reform their political institutions. Most Europeans prefer to ignore the looming challenge of radical policy reform, owing to the decline in living standards that it implies. Global leaders must encourage Europe to tackle its problems decisively by offering advice, financial support, and constructive criticism. Russia must continue to press for an Alliance of Europe – a new framework for economic and diplomatic relations among the EU, Russia, and the rest of Greater Europe – which could offer a way out of Europe’s systemic crisis. The first unfreezing had serious consequences. Now, global leaders must work to minimize the fallout of the second, and use all available means to prevent a third.”  Inspired by Sergey Karaganov, Project Syndicate ow.ly/j4BYH Image source http://karaganov.ru ow.ly/j4BHb EU could collapse triggering a third unfreezing (April 11 2013)

 

Sergey Karaganov the Russian political scientist who heads the Council for Foreign and Defence Policy, a security analytical institution, and has been Presidential Advisor to both Boris Yeltsin and Vladimir Putin, has published an article on the Project Syndicate titled ‘Fatal Thaws’. Karaganov states “During the Cold War, the Soviet Union and, in a milder way, the United States imposed external limits on the activities of states and societies, causing longstanding conflicts among smaller countries to be “frozen”. Following the Soviet Union’s collapse in the 1990’s, those conflicts began to “unfreeze”. With interethnic tensions already on the rise, Yugoslavia was the first country to dissolve into conflict. Soon after, war broke out between Armenia and Azerbaijan, followed by fighting in Transdniestria and Chechnya. … Most threatening, however, is the possibility that the EU could collapse, triggering a third unfreezing. The EU, established to break the destructive cycle of European nationalism that had facilitated the rise of two totalitarian systems and caused two world wars, amounted to the creation of a prototype of a humane world order. After being its own – and thus the world’s – worst enemy for centuries, Europe became a beacon of peace. …At the same time, Europeans must prepare for an even more profound transformation. In order to regain economic competitiveness, European countries will have to abandon many of their social-welfare policies and reform their political institutions. Most Europeans prefer to ignore the looming challenge of radical policy reform, owing to the decline in living standards that it implies. Global leaders must encourage Europe to tackle its problems decisively by offering advice, financial support, and constructive criticism. Russia must continue to press for an Alliance of Europe – a new framework for economic and diplomatic relations among the EU, Russia, and the rest of Greater Europe – which could offer a way out of Europe’s systemic crisis. The first unfreezing had serious consequences. Now, global leaders must work to minimize the fallout of the second, and use all available means to prevent a third.”

 

Inspired by Sergey Karaganov, Project Syndicate ow.ly/j4BYH Image source http://karaganov.ru ow.ly/j4BHb

Aleksander Zotin the Russian writer claims there is a difference between “good” corruption and “bad” corruption in an article published on Worldcrunch titled ‘Is There Such A Thing As Good Corruption?’ Zotin states “First of all, the size. A 3% drain on the economy is not the same as a 25% one. But size is far from the only thing that matters. The structure is also important. Good corruption is often a way to grease the wheels of cumbersome regulations, where officials speed up the decision-making process, helping business. Often that means forced political support for regimes that are undertaking painful economic modernization. One of the important signs of “good” corruption is that the money stays in the country, allowing for economic growth. The American political scientist John Nye even calls this the "Switzerland factor." The less that corrupt money leaves the country (often going to Swiss bank accounts), and the more it is reinvested in the home country’s economy, the less damaging the corruption. The aim of good corruption is to create a good investment climate and improve growth in private business. One of the best examples of this good corruption was 20th century South Korea under dictator Park Chung-hee. He often forced large companies to take care of his party’s needs, and rewarded those companies’ loyalty with low-interest loans and business preferences. He used the money to secure his party’s hold on power rather than just for his own personal gain, and nearly all of the money stayed in the country. At the same time, he cracked down on middle-level corruption – investigating large numbers of mid-level officials and thus creating a good investment climate that forced the government to color inside the lines. Although he ruled as a dictator, Park held his government to strict standards, and didn’t use the corruption strictly for personal enrichment.”  Inspired by Aleksander Zotin, Worldcrunch ow.ly/iqQM6 Image source VK ow.ly/iqRmu Such a thing as good corruption (March 22 2013)

 

Aleksander Zotin the Russian writer claims there is a difference between “good” corruption and “bad” corruption in an article published on Worldcrunch titled ‘Is There Such A Thing As Good Corruption?’ Zotin states “First of all, the size. A 3% drain on the economy is not the same as a 25% one. But size is far from the only thing that matters. The structure is also important. Good corruption is often a way to grease the wheels of cumbersome regulations, where officials speed up the decision-making process, helping business. Often that means forced political support for regimes that are undertaking painful economic modernization. One of the important signs of “good” corruption is that the money stays in the country, allowing for economic growth. The American political scientist John Nye even calls this the “Switzerland factor.” The less that corrupt money leaves the country (often going to Swiss bank accounts), and the more it is reinvested in the home country’s economy, the less damaging the corruption. The aim of good corruption is to create a good investment climate and improve growth in private business. One of the best examples of this good corruption was 20th century South Korea under dictator Park Chung-hee. He often forced large companies to take care of his party’s needs, and rewarded those companies’ loyalty with low-interest loans and business preferences. He used the money to secure his party’s hold on power rather than just for his own personal gain, and nearly all of the money stayed in the country. At the same time, he cracked down on middle-level corruption – investigating large numbers of mid-level officials and thus creating a good investment climate that forced the government to color inside the lines. Although he ruled as a dictator, Park held his government to strict standards, and didn’t use the corruption strictly for personal enrichment.”

 

Inspired by Aleksander Zotin, Worldcrunch ow.ly/iqQM6 Image source VK ow.ly/iqRmu

Yuri Yulianovich Shevchuk the 55 year old Russian singer and songwriter who leads the rock band DDT, and is highly critical of the undemocratic society that has developed in Vladimir Putin's Russia. Shevchuk is the subject of an interview in an article published by Katrina vanden Heuvel and Alec Luhn in The Nation magazine titled ‘The Russian Optimist: An Interview With Opposition Rocker Yuri Shevchuk - “What will become of our country and of us?”. Shevchuk states “…The new generation is not exactly politicized. The point is that every generation lives in a given time period, but all people are different. …Everywhere I’ve spent time after concerts talking to young people. Active young people, the ones with a youthful glint in their eye. They are of course more politicized than the generation of the early 2000s and 2010s. That was a very cynical time, and young people were mostly interested in themselves. Now, in the 2010s, I think we’ve reached kind of a breaking point with the charismatic part of the young generation, progressive young people. …In the past two or three years, a lot has changed. Young people have started to ask more profound questions. They don’t want to leave the country. The slogan of the 2000s was “Get rich.” Now this has become secondary and the main question is, “What will become of our country and of us?” Overall in Russia, things are going well, in my view. Because there’s this dialogue going on, this struggle for civil liberties. Russia is emerging as a state. Well, yes, there are reactionary forces, that’s happening, too. You can look at the world through dark glasses, thinking that everything is bad, terrible. But if you do this, you’ll lose everything, the future. These progressive young people are afraid of nothing.”  Inspired by Katrina vanden Heuvel & Alec Luhn, The Nation ow.ly/hLSkD Image source Yuri Shevchuk ow.ly/hLShI New generation is not exactly politicized (February 23 2013)

 

Yuri Yulianovich Shevchuk the 55 year old Russian singer and songwriter who leads the rock band DDT, and is highly critical of the undemocratic society that has developed in Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Shevchuk is the subject of an interview in an article published by Katrina vanden Heuvel and Alec Luhn in The Nation magazine titled ‘The Russian Optimist: An Interview With Opposition Rocker Yuri Shevchuk – “What will become of our country and of us?”. Shevchuk states “…The new generation is not exactly politicized. The point is that every generation lives in a given time period, but all people are different. …Everywhere I’ve spent time after concerts talking to young people. Active young people, the ones with a youthful glint in their eye. They are of course more politicized than the generation of the early 2000s and 2010s. That was a very cynical time, and young people were mostly interested in themselves. Now, in the 2010s, I think we’ve reached kind of a breaking point with the charismatic part of the young generation, progressive young people. …In the past two or three years, a lot has changed. Young people have started to ask more profound questions. They don’t want to leave the country. The slogan of the 2000s was “Get rich.” Now this has become secondary and the main question is, “What will become of our country and of us?” Overall in Russia, things are going well, in my view. Because there’s this dialogue going on, this struggle for civil liberties. Russia is emerging as a state. Well, yes, there are reactionary forces, that’s happening, too. You can look at the world through dark glasses, thinking that everything is bad, terrible. But if you do this, you’ll lose everything, the future. These progressive young people are afraid of nothing.”

 

Inspired by Katrina vanden Heuvel & Alec Luhn, The Nation ow.ly/hLSkD Image source Yuri Shevchuk ow.ly/hLShI

Svetlana Lunkina the 33 year old Russian Bolshoi principal ballerina having trained under the great Soviet ballerina Ekaterina Maximova under whose leadership at 18 years of age she became the youngest dancer in the history of the company to perform the title role in Giselle. Lunkina is the subject of an article published in the Independent by Matilda Battersby titled ‘Bolshoi ballerina Svetlana Lunkina says she's been driven from Russia by 'threats'’, following the acid attack on artistic director Sergei Filin two weeks ago, and general director Anatoly Iksanov stating that 'evil' has entered the company. Battersby states “…the company’s top ballerina [Lunkina] has revealed she has moved to Canada in response to unspecified “threats”. …Lunkina has left Russia claiming that threats had been made towards herself and her film producer husband. Lunkina… told Russian newspaper Izvestia: “I think we need to react to these threats. These people have no right to interfere in our private lives or my professional work.” The 33-year-old dancer’s unspecified allegations suggest that the threats were made in connection with a film project involving her husband. She had been due to perform in Stravinksy’s The Rite of Spring later this year. "I was supposed to be doing a lot of interesting work, including several premieres," she said. While believed to be unconnected the news of Lunkina’s departure from Russia comes at a dark time for the Bolshoi after its well-liked artistic director Sergei Filin, 42, was brutally attacked in Moscow on 17 January. A masked man threw sulphuric acid in his face as Filin was returning home after a party.  Inspired by Matilda Battersby, The Independent ow.ly/hnHUj Image source Malixia ow.ly/hnIt6 No right to interfere in our private lives (February 12 2013)Svetlana Lunkina the 33 year old Russian Bolshoi principal ballerina having trained under the great Soviet ballerina Ekaterina Maximova under whose leadership at 18 years of age she became the youngest dancer in the history of the company to perform the title role in Giselle. Lunkina is the subject of an article published in the Independent by Matilda Battersby titled ‘Bolshoi ballerina Svetlana Lunkina says she’s been driven from Russia by ‘threats’’, following the acid attack on artistic director Sergei Filin two weeks ago, and general director Anatoly Iksanov stating that ‘evil’ has entered the company. Battersby states “…the company’s top ballerina [Lunkina] has revealed she has moved to Canada in response to unspecified “threats”. …Lunkina has left Russia claiming that threats had been made towards herself and her film producer husband. Lunkina… told Russian newspaper Izvestia: “I think we need to react to these threats. These people have no right to interfere in our private lives or my professional work.” The 33-year-old dancer’s unspecified allegations suggest that the threats were made in connection with a film project involving her husband. She had been due to perform in Stravinksy’s The Rite of Spring later this year. “I was supposed to be doing a lot of interesting work, including several premieres,” she said. While believed to be unconnected the news of Lunkina’s departure from Russia comes at a dark time for the Bolshoi after its well-liked artistic director Sergei Filin, 42, was brutally attacked in Moscow on 17 January. A masked man threw sulphuric acid in his face as Filin was returning home after a party.

 

Inspired by Matilda Battersby, The Independent ow.ly/hnHUj Image source Malixia ow.ly/hnIt6

Sergei Yurevitch Filin the 42 year old Russian ballet dancer artistic director of the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow was attacked with acid by an unknown assailant. He suffered third-degree burns to his face and is in danger of losing his eyesight. The attack came after a lengthy period of infighting and rows within the Bolshoi Ballet company. Ellen Barry has published an article in the New York Times titled ‘Harsh Light Falls on Bolshoi After Acid Attack’, in which she states “The stories about vengeance at the Bolshoi Ballet go back centuries: The rival who hid an alarm clock in the audience, timed to go off during Giselle’s mad scene, or who threw a dead cat onto the stage at curtain in lieu of flowers. There are whispers of needles inserted in costumes, to be discovered in midpirouette, or - the worst - broken glass nestled in the tip of a toeshoe. The ballet has experienced poisonous infighting in recent years as artistic directors have come and gone. But this ballet-loving city awoke … to a special horror. A masked man had flung acid in the face of Sergei Filin, the artistic director of the Bolshoi, causing third-degree burns and severely damaging his eyes. Video from the hospital showed Mr. Filin’s head covered entirely in bandages, with openings for his eyes and mouth, his eyelids grossly swollen. Though police officials said they were exploring theories including disputes over money, Mr. Filin’s colleagues at the Bolshoi said they suspected professional jealousy. In recent weeks Mr. Filin’s tires had been slashed, his car scratched, his two cellphones disabled, his personal e-mail account hacked and private correspondence published, according to Bolshoi officials.”  Inspired by Ellen Barry, New York Times ow.ly/gXHut Image source Bolshoi ow.ly/gXHsr Harsh light falls on Bolshoi after acid attack (February 3 2013)

Sergei Yurevitch Filin the 42 year old Russian ballet dancer artistic director of the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow was attacked with acid by an unknown assailant. He suffered third-degree burns to his face and is in danger of losing his eyesight. The attack came after a lengthy period of infighting and rows within the Bolshoi Ballet company. Ellen Barry has published an article in the New York Times titled ‘Harsh Light Falls on Bolshoi After Acid Attack’, in which she states “The stories about vengeance at the Bolshoi Ballet go back centuries: The rival who hid an alarm clock in the audience, timed to go off during Giselle’s mad scene, or who threw a dead cat onto the stage at curtain in lieu of flowers. There are whispers of needles inserted in costumes, to be discovered in midpirouette, or – the worst – broken glass nestled in the tip of a toeshoe. The ballet has experienced poisonous infighting in recent years as artistic directors have come and gone. But this ballet-loving city awoke … to a special horror. A masked man had flung acid in the face of Sergei Filin, the artistic director of the Bolshoi, causing third-degree burns and severely damaging his eyes. Video from the hospital showed Mr. Filin’s head covered entirely in bandages, with openings for his eyes and mouth, his eyelids grossly swollen. Though police officials said they were exploring theories including disputes over money, Mr. Filin’s colleagues at the Bolshoi said they suspected professional jealousy. In recent weeks Mr. Filin’s tires had been slashed, his car scratched, his two cellphones disabled, his personal e-mail account hacked and private correspondence published, according to Bolshoi officials.”

 

Inspired by Ellen Barry, New York Times ow.ly/gXHut Image source Bolshoi ow.ly/gXHsr

Oligarchs and dictators are not cool (December 9 2012) Oligarchs and dictators are not cool (December 9 2012)

Sarah Thornton the British Canadian writer and sociologist of culture, writing principally about art, artists and the art market, has detailed a list of the top ten reasons from potentially ‘hundreds’ of reasons for her decision to quit the art market beat. Blouin Artinfo has reprinted two of the reasons, being (A) It enables manipulators to publicize the artists whose prices they spike at auction. Tightknit cabals of dealers and speculative collectors count on the fact that you will report record prices without being able to reveal the collusion behind how they were achieved. …It’s a shame when good artists’ careers are made volatile by speculation.  And (B) Oligarchs and dictators are not cool. I have no problem with rich people. (Some of my best friends are high net worth individuals!) But amongst the biggest spenders in the art market right now are people who have made their money in non-democracies with horrendous human rights records. Their expertise in rising to the top of a corrupt system gives punch to the term “filthy lucre.” However, the astronomical prices paid by these guys do have a positive trickle-down effect. When they buy a Gerhard Richter for $20m, the consignor of the painting will likely re-invest some of their profit in younger art (particularly if they are American and keen to defer capital gains tax). These Russian, Arab and Chinese collectors bring liquidity to the art world and allow more artists, curators and critics to make a living in relation to art.”

 

Inspired by Blouin ArtInfo ow.ly/fKgvH image source ow.ly/fKgrd

A Potential Piece of Yellowism (October 21 2012) A Potential Piece of Yellowism (October 21 2012)

Vladimir Umanets the 26 year old Russian founder of ‘Yellowism’ has been arrested by British police for the graffiti damage caused to a Mark Rothko painting at the Tate Modern. In an article by John Fahey & Ellen Branagh published in The Independent, states “The wording on the bottom-right corner of the piece appears to read: “Vladimir Umanets, A Potential Piece of Yellowism. “Umanets said “Some people think I’m crazy or a vandal, but my intention was not to destroy or decrease the value, or to go crazy. I am not a vandal.” Umanets, who studied art, is one of the founders of “Yellowism”, which he describes as… “Yellowism is not art, and Yellowish isn’t anti-art. It’s an element of contemporary visual culture. It’s not an artistic movement. It’s not art, it’s not reality, it’s just Yellowism. It can’t be presented in a gallery of art, it can be presented only in Yellowistic chambers. The main difference between Yellowism and art is that in art you have got freedom of interpretation, in Yellowism you don’t have freedom of interpretation. Everything is about Yellowism – that’s it. I am a Yellowist. I believe what I am doing and I want people to start talking about this. It was like a platform. I don’t need to be famous, I don’t want money, I don’t want fame, I’m not seeking attention. Maybe I would like to point people’s attention on what it’s all about. What is Yellowism? What is art? It’s good people are shocked about what happened. No one is realising what actually happened, everyone is just posting that the piece has been damaged or destroyed or defaced. “But I believe that after a few years they will start looking for it from the right angle. So that’s why I did it. I believe that from everything bad there’s always a good outcome so I’m prepared for that but obviously I don’t want to spend a few months, even a few weeks, in jail. But I do strongly believe in what I am doing, I have dedicated my life to this. To be honest, I do believe I increased the value. It seems probably ridiculous for someone but I do believe in this. I didn’t decrease the value, I didn’t destroy this picture, I put something new.”

 

Inspired by John Fahey & Ellen Branagh ow.ly/eofzx image source Huff Post ow.ly/eofWN

Hooliganism motivated by religious hatred (September 3 2012) Hooliganism motivated by religious hatred (September 3 2012)

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova the 23 year old Russian musician with the feminist punk rock group ‘Pussy Riot’, along with two other group members have lodged appeals against their two year sentence. In an article published in The Independent Shaun Walker states “As lawyers for the jailed members of the punk band Pussy Riot prepare their appeals, the three women are gearing up to face the grim reality of two years in a Russian prison, where they will be able to meet their families and young children just once every six months, and receive phone calls only quarterly. …sentenced to two years in prison …for performing a “punk prayer” in a Moscow cathedral in February. The women say it was a political protest over the Russian Orthodox Church’s support for President Vladimir Putin, but the court ruled that it constituted “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” in a verdict that has caused outrage in Russia and across the world. Lawyer Nikolai Polozov said he expected the court to hear the women’s appeal in September, and if it was unsuccessful, they would be moved from pre-trial detention to a prison camp shortly afterwards. …The women can be dispatched to any prison in Russia, meaning they could end up thousands of miles away from Moscow. Two of the women have young children, but Mr Polozov said this would not be taken into account, and they would be allowed to see them only twice a year.”

 

Inspired by Shaun Walker ow.ly/djhZX image source Таганский суд ow.ly/djitD

Dismisses allegations as weird and baseless (August 17 2012) Dismisses allegations as weird and baseless (August 17 2012)

Alexei Anatolievich Navalny the 36 year old Russian lawyer, political activist and critic of corruption in Russia, especially of Russian leader Vladimir Putin, has been charged with theft accused of organising a scheme to steal assets from a state timber company. In an Aljazeera article Navalny dismisses the allegations as “weird” and baseless is said to have been “…charged with theft, and could be handed a 10-year prison sentence as the government continues its crackdown on dissent. …The State Investigative Committee said it suspects Navalny of organising a scheme to steal assets from a state timber company. The assets are estimated to be worth about $500,000. As the committee pursues an investigation against him, Navalny has been ordered not to leave Moscow. …the anti-corruption crusader has been instrumental in rallying Russia’s young internet generation against Putin’s rule. Navalny, a lawyer, led a series of rallies in Moscow that attracted up to 100,000 people after December’s parliamentary elections were alleged to have been rigged and ahead of the March election that handed Putin a third presidential term. …The government embarked on a major crackdown on the opposition after Putin’s re-election, which was also criticised as fraudulent, arresting some activists and using legislation to try to curb its activities. …The probe against Navalny focuses on events dating to 2009 when he served as an adviser to a provincial governor in the Kirov region. Investigators allege that he colluded with the head of a state timber company and a trader to rob it. A previous probe into similar allegations was closed earlier this year for lack of evidence.”

 

Inspired by Aljazeera ow.ly/cQLxi image source Facebook ow.ly/cQLkj

Gregory Shvedov the 35 year old Russian Human Rights activist and journalist renowned for his efforts in promoting human rights in Russia has been profiled by Katrina vanden Heuvel in an article for The Nation, where she states, “With his full red beard and pale complexion, Gregory Shvedov could be taken for a nineteenth-century Russian novelist. Yet Shvedov is an editor fiercely committed to independent journalism at a time when international media monitors rank Russia as among the world’s most dangerous countries for reporters. …Shvedov founded Caucasian Knot (Kavkazkii Uzel), which since its launch in 2001 has become the leading independent source of news, in Russian and English, about the Caucasus. The site has some fifty local correspondents working in twenty locations in the conflict-ridden region—a patchwork quilt of Russian and independent republics including Chechnya, Dagestan and Azerbaijan. Since the end of the Soviet Union in 1991, this vast and complex region has been ravaged by civil war, occupation, violence, torture, kidnappings, terrorism, corruption, rising unemployment and growing Islamic radicalism. After September 11, 2001, by aligning himself with President George W. Bush’s “global war on terror,” President Vladimir Putin was able to largely silence international criticism of Russia’s actions in the Chechen war.”

 

Inspired by Katrina vanden Heuvel http://ow.ly/anGY7 image source wpfd2011 http://ow.ly/anHpt

Irina Aleksandrovna Antonova the 90 year old Russian Director of the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow for the past 50+ years has been the subject of an article by Anna Somers Cocks published in The Art Newspaper titled ‘Firmly in the saddle at 90’. Cocks states, “She has served there for 67 years, joining it one month before the end of the Second World War. “It was August 1945”, she remembers: “The works of art confiscated from the Dresden museums were arriving as war reparations [most were returned in 1955 as part of a political treaty with East Germany]… Since 1961, she has been the highly respected director of the museum, which is only ten years older than herself. Its centenary and her birthday will be celebrated together in great state at the Bolshoi Theatre on 31 May. Directors of the leading museums of the world, members of the exclusive and discreet Bizot Group, a kind of museum summit, are coming to pay homage to a woman who has skillfully navigated the dangerous political shoals of her country and has represented it with distinction abroad.”

 

Inspired by Anna Somers Cocks http://ow.ly/a80H3 image source http://ow.ly/a810j

Alexey Sitev the 39 year old Russian marine engineer who postponed his honeymoon for 18 months, after only two weeks of marriage before embarking as commander of simulated mission to Mars, has returned. Although Sitev did not actually leave, he has returned from his confinement on the Mars500 simulated voyage to Mars and back taking a total of 520 days to complete. The experimental simulation is unprecedented in isolating six highly trained professionals for such duration, and subjected to elaborate and often invasive experimentation. Mars-500 is an international multi-part experiment simulating a manned flight to Mars, with a crew of volunteers living and working in a mockup spacecraft with limited supplies of consumables. The objective of the simulation is to yield medical and psychological data on the effects of long-term isolation. Sitev is a specialist in life support systems.

 

Inspired by Ian Sample & Miriam Elder http://ow.ly/7kegx image source ESA http://ow.ly/7kevh

Darya Alexandrovna Zhukova the 30 year old Russian born US magazine editor has released the inaugural issue of the Garage magazine to much fanfare, with the inclusion on its cover of a Damien Hirst design of a butterfly tattoo created around a 23 year old model’s vagina. Zhukova who founded the IRIS Foundation, a non-profit organization promoting contemporary culture, was previously the Editor-in-Chief of Pop fashion magazine before resigning to create her own. In an interview with ArtInfo, Zhukova defined the concept for the Garage magazine as “Our aim is not to be controversial; instead … about providing a unique viewing experience. Admittedly, it is a magazine, but it really functions as an object, a space for ambitious projects to flourish, which is why the first issue has three different covers”.

Inspired by Andrew Goldstein http://ow.ly/6tXWn image source sherdog.net http://ow.ly/6tXVU

Anton Viktorovich Yelchin the 22 year old Russian born US film and television actor given the title by TheDailyBeast of Geeky Teen Heartthrob, has declared his mistrust of people generally. In an interview he states “There’s only a handful of people I trust completely, and I know who they are. Other than that, I pretty much don’t trust people. It’s just how I am. The film industry itself—the ‘industry’ and business side of it—just sucks and is really demoralizing, so it’s added to my general paranoia.” Yelchin has a stunning roll call in his short but stellar career, including his latest effort in the remake of ‘Fright Night’. Yelchin moved to the US with his parents in the year of his birth, obtaining refugee status from political oppression.

 

Inspired by Marlow Stern http://ow.ly/6tYPu image source gdcgraphics http://ow.ly/6tYNa

Yevgenii Nikolaevich Prilepin the 36 year old Russian writer and political dissident known as Zahar Prilepin has been the subject of an article published by Owen Matthews, who describes Priepin’s writing as “dark and violent, yet it shines with a Tolstoy-like faith in the Russian people”. Priepin a former military commander of the brutal OMON unit was subjected to howls of protest following remarks at a literary festival in France when he matter-of-factly stated “All I can say is that the Russian soldier has a natural talent for fighting and he’s ready to demonstrate that skill in any European country you like”. Priepin now heads the local branch of the banned National Bolshevik Party, is an admirer of the assassinated investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya, and despises the “thieves” in the Kremlin particularly Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Inspired by Owen Matthews ow.ly/69b0I image source Serj Nickel ow.ly/69bc9 In Russia everything has been destroyed (August 30 2011)

Yevgenii Nikolaevich Prilepin the 36 year old Russian writer and political dissident known as Zahar Prilepin has been the subject of an article published by Owen Matthews, who describes Priepin’s writing as “dark and violent, yet it shines with a Tolstoy-like faith in the Russian people”. Priepin a former military commander of the brutal OMON unit was subjected to howls of protest following remarks at a literary festival in France when he matter-of-factly stated “All I can say is that the Russian soldier has a natural talent for fighting and he’s ready to demonstrate that skill in any European country you like”. Priepin now heads the local branch of the banned National Bolshevik Party, is an admirer of the assassinated investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya, and despises the “thieves” in the Kremlin particularly Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

 

Inspired by Owen Matthews http://ow.ly/69b0I image source Serj Nickel http://ow.ly/69bc9

Marat Alexandrovich Gelman the 50 year old owner and director of Guelman’s Contemporary Art Gallery has opened a new art centre in the historic Russian city of Tver, a Stalin era terminal on the Volga river outside of Moscow. The centre named TverCA follows Gelman’s transformation of the industrial city Perm in the Ural mountain region into an art destination place, with plans to open similar centres in many other regions throughout Russia. The TverCA centre opened with a controversial exhibition titled ‘Russia for All’ by Dmitry Gutov and Viktor Bondarenko, depicting names of famous Russian/Soviet historical figures in a graffiti style along with their ethnic origins. Although intended to be a statement against nationalism, critics claim the inclusion of the ethnic origin only further foments nationalism. Inspired by Sophia Kishkovsky ow.ly/65hsL image source Peoples History ow.ly/65hN6 Art to help restore spirituality (August 28 2011)

Marat Alexandrovich Gelman the 50 year old owner and director of Guelman’s Contemporary Art Gallery has opened a new art centre in the historic Russian city of Tver, a Stalin era terminal on the Volga river outside of Moscow. The centre named TverCA follows Gelman’s transformation of the industrial city Perm in the Ural mountain region into an art destination place, with plans to open similar centres in many other regions throughout Russia. The TverCA centre opened with a controversial exhibition titled ‘Russia for All’ by Dmitry Gutov and Viktor Bondarenko, depicting names of famous Russian/Soviet historical figures in a graffiti style along with their ethnic origins. Although intended to be a statement against nationalism, critics claim the inclusion of the ethnic origin only further foments nationalism.

 

Inspired by Sophia Kishkovsky http://ow.ly/65hsL image source Peoples History http://ow.ly/65hN6

Mikhail Dmitrievitch Prokhorov the 46 year old Russian billionaire entrepreneur industrialist in precious metals and owner of the New Jersey Nets basketball team in the US has confirmed an intention to enter Russian politics, the first high profile Russian businessman to do so since the 2003 demise of Mikhail Khodorkovsky the former oil magnate who was imprisoned and his assets seized by the state. Prokhorov has submitted a proposal to the pro-business ‘Right Cause Party’, seeking to head up the political leadership of the party in readiness for the nation’s elections at the end of this year. The ‘Right Cause Party’ does not at this stage hold any political office within the nations parliament. Prokhorov is Russia’s third wealthiest billionaire with a self made personal fortune of 18bil US dollars. Inspired by Miriam Elder ow.ly/56vdT image source Wikipedia ow.ly/56vtz Sent my proposal, now the decision is with them (July 20 2011)

Mikhail Dmitrievitch Prokhorov the 46 year old Russian billionaire entrepreneur industrialist in precious metals and owner of the New Jersey Nets basketball team in the US has confirmed an intention to enter Russian politics, the first high profile Russian businessman to do so since the 2003 demise of Mikhail Khodorkovsky the former oil magnate who was imprisoned and his assets seized by the state. Prokhorov has submitted a proposal to the pro-business ‘Right Cause Party’, seeking to head up the political leadership of the party in readiness for the nation’s elections at the end of this year. The ‘Right Cause Party’ does not at this stage hold any political office within the nations parliament. Prokhorov is Russia’s third wealthiest billionaire with a self made personal fortune of 18bil US dollars.

 

Inspired by Miriam Elder http://ow.ly/56vdT image source Wikipedia http://ow.ly/56vtz

Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov a 49 year old Russian woman living Kazan had been incorrectly declared dead by doctors, reviving as her funeral only to die of the shock of her surroundings. At the time of her revival mourners were filing past her open coffin and praying for her soul to be heaven bound. Her eyes apparently fluttered and she began screaming, presumably aware of where she was. Mukhametzyanov had initially been declared dead after a heart attack at her home where she suffered chest pains and collapsed. When she revived she was rushed back to the hospital only to die (again) within minutes of her arrival. Her devastated husband Fagili states “'I am very angry and want answers. She wasn’t dead when they said she was and they could have saved her”. Inspired by Adrienne Crezo ow.ly/5qXqb image source DailyMail ow.ly/5qXrp She wasn’t dead when they said she was (June 29 2011)

Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov a 49 year old Russian woman living Kazan had been incorrectly declared dead by doctors, reviving as her funeral only to die of the shock of her surroundings. At the time of her revival mourners were filing past her open coffin and praying for her soul to be heaven bound. Her eyes apparently fluttered and she began screaming, presumably aware of where she was. Mukhametzyanov had initially been declared dead after a heart attack at her home where she suffered chest pains and collapsed. When she revived she was rushed back to the hospital only to die (again) within minutes of her arrival. Her devastated husband Fagili states “’I am very angry and want answers. She wasn’t dead when they said she was and they could have saved her”.

 

Inspired by Adrienne Crezo ow.ly/5qXqb image source DailyMail ow.ly/5qXrp

Anna Stepanovna Politkovskaya the Russian journalist and human rights activist who was assassinated at the age of 48 in 2006 when shot dead in a lift of her apartment block in Central Moscow may be on the verge of having justice for her unresolved murder. Rustam Makhmudov a 37 year old Chechen fugitive suspect of the assassination, has been arrested by Russian authorities with the help of Belgian police, who were closing in on his Belgium hiding place prior to his escape to his parents home back in Chechnya. The arrest is claimed to be a break through in the long maligned investigation. Politkovskaya had won international awards for her anti-Kremlin reporting prior to her assassination, accusing Russian President Vladimir Putin of strong arm tactics in the conflict with Chechnya to stifle democracy. Inspired by rtenews ow.ly/5aPA0 image source Colin McPherson ow.ly/5aPsj Unacceptable crime that cannot go unpunished (June12 2011)

Anna Stepanovna Politkovskaya the Russian journalist and human rights activist who was assassinated at the age of 48 in 2006 when shot dead in a lift of her apartment block in Central Moscow may be on the verge of having justice for her unresolved murder. Rustam Makhmudov a 37 year old Chechen fugitive suspect of the assassination, has been arrested by Russian authorities with the help of Belgian police, who were closing in on his Belgium hiding place prior to his escape to his parents home back in Chechnya. The arrest is claimed to be a break through in the long maligned investigation. Politkovskaya had won international awards for her anti-Kremlin reporting prior to her assassination, accusing Russian President Vladimir Putin of strong arm tactics in the conflict with Chechnya to stifle democracy.

 

Inspired by rtenews ow.ly/5aPA0 image source Colin McPherson ow.ly/5aPsj

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