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Biculturalism and the Apollo-Soyuz Mission


The final two short audio pieces from the Monterey Summer Symposium on Russia. “A Brief Conversation on Biculturalism” by Alexandra Diouk and “Remembering the 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Mission: 45 years of US-Russian Space Cooperation” by Lisa Becker.

Trash Protests and Leninopad


Two short audio pieces from the Monterey Summer Symposium on Russia. “The Great Russian Trash Crisis” by Seth Farkas and  “An Empty Pedestal: Ukraine after Leninopad” by Sabrina Beaver.

The Duma’s Falsification of History

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It appears that the Soviet practice of erasing history from sight and therefore mind continues in Putin’s Russia. Kommersant reports that contrary to the position of the Duma’s Upper Chamber, the State Duma has ruled to remove the hammer and sickle from the WWII Victory Banner, which was raised on the German Reichstag on May 1, 1945.

Support and opposition to the move surely breaks along generational/political lines. “As the son of a War veteran, I can’t vote for the bill,” Sergey Minorov, speaker of the Federation Council, said before the vote. “If our elderly are against it, let’s respect their opinion.” Communists have also opposed the change stating that “symbol of Victory Day now looks more like that of the Day of the People’s Republic of China.” Communist MP Viktor Tyulkin stated before the Duma vote, “The main content was conveyed by the red color, the hammer, sickle and star, which symbolized the unity of the workers, peasants and workers peasants of the Red Army.” One can’t help to note the irony of members of the Communist Party complaining about falsifying history.

However, mention of workers’ and peasants’ unity didn’t spark any nostalgia among members of United Russia, who are spearheading the bill as a way to search for “more efficient models for interaction with the countries on the post-Soviet space.” In the case of the Victory Banner, United Russia wants to harness the victories of the Communist past only without the Communists.