SOURCE: The Atlantic
Soviet experiences from decades past offer examples for what Beijing may do to quell protests in the city.
SOURCE: New Historian
Constructed during the sixteenth century by Ivan the Terrible’s mother, Elena Glinskaya, the room was designed specifically to allow the Russians to spy on an enemy by eavesdropping through a wall.
Moscow this year is celebrating the 80th anniversary of its subway system — the Moscow Metro — a crowning achievement of the Soviet Union's unprecedented forced industrialization in the 1930s.
SOURCE: Moscow Times
The replica will be built by Dutch Army engineers.
SOURCE: Moscow News
Just steps away from the matryoshka-strewn Old Arbat, where tacky trinkets offer a shallow slice of Russian culture to go, an object of genuine cultural significance is on the brink of destruction.Builders are at work on a multifunctional center with three levels of underground parking, in the process, experts say, endangering a celebrated gem of the Russian avant-garde.The Melnikov House on Krivoarbatsky Pereulok is utterly original. Formed from two intersecting cylinders with over 60 diamond-shaped windows, the house eschews typical horizontal space in favor of a steady spiral upwards: from basic needs on the ground floor, to sleeping and living rooms on the second, to creation in the form of a lofty, radiant studio on the third.Built as a model for mass housing in 1929, the house soon became a refuge for its pioneering designer, Konstantin Melnikov, when Stalinism's conservative turn in the early '30s left the architect unable to teach or practice his craft. Yet even now the unique structure still has an uncertain future....
SOURCE: The Art Newspaper
Cultural heritage activists in Moscow, St Petersburg and across the rest of Russia are warning that a string of important architectural monuments are falling prey to a dangerous combination of Soviet-style brutality and capitalist greed, and might soon be irrevocably lost.Landmarks such as the Bolkonsky House, which inspired scenes in Leo Tolstoy’s novels, and a seminal 1850s roundhouse railway depot that inspired similar depots in Europe and the US are hanging by a thread, they say, or have, for all practical purposes, been destroyed.Their warning calls also underscore a growing activism, or at least a sense of an active preservationist community linked by social networking resources such as Facebook.When Yevgeny Sosedov—a 25-year-old preservationist who has been battling for years to save Arkhangelskoye, the Yusupov family estate—recently raced to save an historic avenue of linden trees nearby, he was surprised by the intensity of the reaction....
SOURCE: The New Republic
Peter Savodnik is a journalist in Washington, D.C. His book, The Interloper: Lee Harvey Oswald Inside the Soviet Union, will be published in November by Basic Books.Edward Snowden may not have realized it as he fled Hong Kong last month, but he was about to become part of a tradition that predates Internet metadata collection, or Wikileaks, or the National Security Agency itself: He was an American dissident heading for Russia.Now, as he nears his third week in consular limbo, the man who leaked word of the NSA’s Prism program must be feeling a tad dismayed by his reception, which has not exactly been warm or cold but somewhere, weirdly, in between. If he’d read up on the history of other Americans who wound up under the dubious protection of the Kremlin, he might not be so surprised. Whether seeking exile in a Soviet socialist paradise or merely hoping that Vladimir Putin’s hostility to Washington means you’ll be able to fly on toward Ecuador in peace, the history of Americans fleeing to Moscow is a long and unhappy one.
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