148123 stories
·
0 followers

Vladimir Putin: Why the Russian president's skiing joke is not the only part of his speech to hark back to the Soviet era

1 Share

Vladimir Putin’s skiing joke may hark back to the Soviet era – but so did a lot of his speech

Warnings of nuclear war fuelled by the Western war-mongers, praise for Russian entrepreneurs and troops serving in Ukraine, a drive to encourage women to have more babies – and health advice to stop drinking and start skiing: it was all there in Vladimir Putin’s annual state of the nation address, which was beamed into Russian households on Thursday morning.

Even those who weren’t at home will not have had an opportunity to miss it: the national address was projected onto large buildings and cinemas opened their doors for free to ensure everyone had access to the two hour speech.

While the speech held few surprises, with plenty of criticism of Western allies and rhetoric which booted morale around the invasion of Ukraine, around half of it was dedicated to more mundane domestic policies such as investment in culture and education and changes to taxation.

He warned that the West was responsible for creating a potential nuclear conflict which could lead to the “destruction of civilisation" and, in an ominous, but not uncharacteristic message, said any countries considering lending their troops to support Ukraine on the war would face “tragic” consequences.

He also praised Russian entrepreneurs who had stepped in to run businesses which replaced western brands which pulled out of Russia after the invasion of Ukraine, such as Starbucks and McDonalds.

When it came to the invasion, Mr Putin unusually moved away from his conventional language of a “special operation” to describe it as a “war”.

“We did not start this war in Donbas,” he insisted, going on to bring out the old trope of his aim to “de-Nazify” Ukraine.

One thing he did not speak about, unsurprisingly, was the death of Alexei Navalny, the opposition politician who died while serving time in a penal colony in Siberia – four years after surviving a poisoning attempt. Mr Navalny’s funeral is due to take place in Moscow on Friday.

In a wider policy sweep, he also tackled Russia’s health problems, including alcohol.

"Everyone remembers the joke: stop drinking and start skiing,” he said, referencing a Soviet-era motto.

I’m not quite sure what the joke is, but it’s probably not bad advice for a nation which, according to the US-based Jamestown Foundation think tank, has increased its alcohol consumption to 2.3 billion litres since the start of the conflict with Ukraine.

However, his skiing joke – which hopefully works better in Russian - was not the only Soviet element to his speech.

A new initiative, Family, will encourage women to have more babies to populate Mother Russia, in an echo of a similar Stalin-era policy, while Mr Putin’s nuclear threats trigger not-too-distant memories of the Cold War era.

There is no doubt Mr Putin will win next month’s elections, he will make sure of it.

But whether returning Russia to Soviet policies will be popular with the country’s citizens, remains to be seen.

Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
3 hours ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete

Finally, we have an Israeli-Ukrainian military alliance

1 Share
Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
1 day ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete

russian a-50 awacs il-76 reconnaissance plane - Google Search

1 Share

Beriev A-50

Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Beriev_A-50
Wikipedia
<a href="https://en.wikipedia.org" rel="nofollow">https://en.wikipedia.org</a> › wiki › Beriev_A-50
The Beriev A-50 (NATO reporting name: Mainstay) is a Soviet/Russian airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft that is based on the Ilyushin Il-76 ...
People also ask
Feedback

After historic shoot-down, why Russia will struggle to ...

Breaking Defense
https://breakingdefense.com › 2024/01 › after-historic-sh...
Breaking Defense
<a href="https://breakingdefense.com" rel="nofollow">https://breakingdefense.com</a> › 2024/01 › after-historic-sh...
Jan 31, 2024The A-50U aircraft has a flight crew of five, and these “can be easily replaced. Any Il-76 flight deck crew can be trained to fly the A-50 ...
Missing: awacsreconnaissance

Did A Patriot Missile Down Russia's Hyper-Advanced ...

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
https://www.rferl.org › russia-ukraine-war-a-50-radar-p...
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
<a href="https://www.rferl.org" rel="nofollow">https://www.rferl.org</a> › russia-ukraine-war-a-50-radar-p...
Jan 16, 2024Kyiv claimed on January 14 that it shot down an A-50 reconnaissance jet. If confirmed it would be be a major blow to Russia's war effort.

How Kyiv shooting down a Russian spy plane could impact ...

DW
https://www.dw.com › how-kyiv-shooting-down-a-russi...
DW
<a href="https://www.dw.com" rel="nofollow">https://www.dw.com</a> › how-kyiv-shooting-down-a-russi...
Jan 17, 2024Ukraine claims it shot down a Russian A-50 reconnaissance aircraft. ... Il-76 transport plane. Advertisement. Sophisticated rotating radar systems.

Analysis: A Quick Guide to Russia's Downed A-50 and ...

Kyiv Post
https://www.kyivpost.com › analysis
Kyiv Post
<a href="https://www.kyivpost.com" rel="nofollow">https://www.kyivpost.com</a> › analysis
Jan 15, 2024The A-50 [NATO reporting name: “Mainstay”] airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft is based on the Ilyushin Il-76 transport. The ...
Missing: reconnaissance ‎| Show results with: reconnaissance

Ilyushin Il-76

Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org › wiki › Ilyushin_Il-76
Wikipedia
<a href="https://en.wikipedia.org" rel="nofollow">https://en.wikipedia.org</a> › wiki › Ilyushin_Il-76
The Ilyushin Il-76 is a multi-purpose, fixed-wing, four-engine turbofan strategic airlifter designed by the Soviet Union's Ilyushin design bureau as a ...

Ukraine's A-50 shoot-down success highlights Russian ...

FlightGlobal
https://www.flightglobal.com › defence › 156597.article
FlightGlobal
<a href="https://www.flightglobal.com" rel="nofollow">https://www.flightglobal.com</a> › defence › 156597.article
Jan 23, 2024Cirium data indicates that the Russian air force now has 12 operational A-50s, with the airframes aged between 33 and 40 years. Two enhanced A- ...
Missing: reconnaissance ‎| Show results with: reconnaissance

Il-76 Mainstay AWACS - Aircraft — Weapons

Military Periscope
https://www.militaryperiscope.com › aircraft › overview
Military Periscope
<a href="https://www.militaryperiscope.com" rel="nofollow">https://www.militaryperiscope.com</a> › aircraft › overview
The Il-76 Mainstay (Russian designation A-50) is an adaptation of the Candid cargo/transport aircraft (see separate database entry) used to carry a Russian ...
Missing: plane ‎| Show results with: plane

Russian A-50 'AWACS' Plane Was Destroyed by Ukraine

The National Interest
https://nationalinterest.org › blog › buzz › russian-50-a...
The National Interest
<a href="https://nationalinterest.org" rel="nofollow">https://nationalinterest.org</a> › blog › buzz › russian-50-a...
Jan 15, 2024The Beriev A-50 (NATO reporting name "Mainstay") was developed by the Soviet Union in the 1970s and is based on the Ilyushin Il-76 transport.

Why Did The Russian Il-76 Crash? What We Know, And ...

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
https://www.rferl.org › russia-ii-76-crash-explainer-ukr...
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
<a href="https://www.rferl.org" rel="nofollow">https://www.rferl.org</a> › russia-ii-76-crash-explainer-ukr...
Jan 25, 2024Last week, Ukraine claimed it had downed an Antonov A-50 reconnaissance plane, a flying command center used to help Russian aircraft locate ...
Missing: awacs ‎| Show results with: awacs
Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
4 days ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete

Russian national with ties to Vladimir Putin arrested in Austin

1 Share

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Vadim Wolfson, a Russian national and current U.S. legal permanent resident, was arrested earlier Thursday in Austin by local federal task force officers, according to court records.

Documents state Wolfson is the founder of Bank Otkritie, formerly one of the largest privately-held banks in Russia, before he moved to the U.S. around 2018.

The arrest came from a federal warrant issued by the Southern District of New York. According to court documents, Wolfson and others have been indicted on federal charges related to violations of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) and money laundering.

Court documents list two co-defendants, Andrey Kostin, a Russian national who resides in Russia, and a U.S. national residing in New Jersey.

Attorney information for Wolfson wasn’t listed as of Thursday evening. KXAN will update this story when that information becomes available.

Records state the defendants all participated in a scheme using shell companies to own and control assets worth “tens of millions of dollars” to and for the benefit of Kostin, a Russian oligarch who, since 2002, has been the president and chairman of VTB Bank, one of the largest Russian state-owned banking groups.

Among those assets were a luxury home in Aspen, Colorado, which was primarily used by Wolfson, and two luxury superyachts valued at over $135 million, according to the Department of Justice.

In 2018, Kostin was sanctioned and designated a Specially Designated National and put on the Blocked Persons list (“SDN List”) by the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”).

“Unless otherwise authorized or exempt, transactions conducted by U.S. persons, including U.S. financial institutions, or occurring in the United States are prohibited if they involve transferring, paying, exporting, withdrawing, or otherwise dealing in the property or interests in property of an entity or individual listed on the SDN List,” documents state.

According to court records, Kostin was made aware that the U.S. was likely going to impose new sanctions that would target Russian oligarchs as a result of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.

A news report cited in the court documents state Kostin was aware there was “a high risk his name would be added to a new U.S. list of people close to Vladimir Putin, but that he was unfazed by the prospect.”

The indictment states Wolfson moved to New York around 2018 where he resided at the time but does not specifically reference why Wolfson was in Austin.

KXAN found two property records in Austin listing Wolfson as the owner, a nearly 4.5-acre ranch in southwest Austin purchased by Wolfson in 2020, and a home in west Austin’s affluent Tarrytown neighborhood purchased by Wolfson in 2022.

The two properties are valued at nearly $10 million, according to property records.

According to the DOJ, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said:

“As alleged, sanctioned oligarch Andrey Kostin and his co-defendants flouted U.S. sanctions to support his exceptionally lavish lifestyle.  Through complex schemes involving shell companies and illicit transactions, Kostin and his associates allegedly laundered funds and illegally made transactions with U.S. currency for the maintenance and enhancement of Kostin’s superyachts and luxury Aspen home, blatantly disregarding U.S. law.  This investigation highlights the collaborative efforts of this Office and our law enforcement partners around the globe to uphold critical sanctions put in place to support our national security goals and hold accountable those who seek to undermine them.

Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
6 days ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete

How an Ex-FBI Informant, Alexander Smirnov, Targeted the Bidens

1 Share
Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
7 days ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete

FBI=KGB - Google Search

1 Share
Read the whole story
Michael_Novakhov
7 days ago
reply
http://michael_novakhov.newsblur.com/
Share this story
Delete
Next Page of Stories