The Moscow Elections, 8 Sept 2013

Discussion in 'Russian Politics' started by AKarlin, Jul 29, 2013.

?

Who would you vote for as Mayor of Moscow?

Poll closed Sep 2, 2013.
  1. Sergey Sobyanin

    66.7%
  2. Alexei Navalny

    11.1%
  3. Ivan Melnikov

    22.2%
  4. Mikhail Degtyaryov

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Nikolai Levichev

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Sergey Mitrokhin

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. Other - clarify

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The big girl's blouse was acting silly buggers at this evening's Bolotnaya Square rally.

    See: Навальный выиграл не кресло мэра, но свободу? [Navalny did not win the post of mayor, but has he won freedom?]

    Extracts:

    At the rally the opposition declared the birth of a new opposition

    Opposition Moscow mayor contender, Alexei Navalny, has urged his supporters to present an ultimatum to the authorities about their having a recount in "problem" areas and a second round of the mayoral election. He has said "no" to any acts of civil disobedience: he has not called for any, although he hinted that "when the time comes to turn cars over, to light fires and spend the night on the pavement", he will call his comrades right away ...

    ... According to observers' reports, there were more than 9,000 people at the rally. The event was not nearly as massive as the first "Bolotnaya" rallies , but was colourful: people handed out placards and stickers, and the brightly lit stage looked a winner in the semi-darkness as the sun set in the sky in its background.

    ...Navalny only appeared on stage late, accompanied by members of his team. "I am delighted to be part of something big and powerful!" he declared, referring to his team.

    "I would not drag you anywhere where you had already come on your own accord", said the opposition leader. And, almost menacingly, he hinted that the forces for such an action were sufficient: "When it's time to turn cars over and light fires and to spend the night on the pavement, I'll have a chat with you about it! And I'll spend the night on the pavement with you! Police officers have cautiously asked me if I would pitch a tent here. We do not need a tent: we live here !

    With an expressive wave of his hand towards the Kremlin, he called upon them all to make their own decisions in order that they soon be "on the other side of the river"...

    The rabble-rouser has already received a warning off the public prosecutor over his threatening public order.

    See: Прокуратура направила предостережение Навальному [The prosecutor's office has sent a warning Navalny]

    " ...предостережение вызвано появившимися в Интернете сведениями о несогласии оппозиционера с итогами выборов и «призывами населения к акциям гражданского неповиновения."

    [... a due caution has appeared on the Internet concerning the oppositionist's disagreement with the outcome of the elections and his "appeals to the population for civil disobedience."]
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
  2. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Bolotnaya this evening:


    [​IMG]

    I want to apologize to you, because every time I was asked if I believed in victory, I would say ‘yes, we can win these elections.’ But still, I had a thought that it was impossible…But now when I know that every third voter in Moscow cast their ballot for us, I am saying that it is a victory - Navalny.

    Flawed thinking, perhaps?

    Every third voter in Moscow???

    Or every third voter in Moscow that voted?

    See: Thousands of Hamsters demand vote recount at Moscow mayoral election protest
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  3. Alexander Mercouris

    Alexander Mercouris Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Now that the dust has settled, I am going to say who I think was the big winner in the elections on Sunday. The answer is Russia.

    These have been the cleanest and most transparent elections Russia has ever had and I am not just referring to the elections in Moscow. There seems to have been a sustained effort since the disputed parliamentary elections of 2 years to clean up any problems (including problems of perception). I suspect that a lot of this has involved making the elections more transparent rather than carrying out any fundamental changes. The result is an election campaign and voting and counting process across the whole country that was carried out impeccably. Though there's been some whining from the usual quarters the thoroughly professional way in which the elections were conducted has had a calming process on the political situation. Moreover it's striking that the people who won were overwhelmingly from the established parties with United Russia achieving an almost clean sweep.

    I have sometimes thought that western criticism of Russia whilst often unfair and unreasonable by setting a standard for Russia that is so high may in the end work to Russia's advantage by forcing Russia to run its economy more responsibly, its legal system more fairly and its electoral system even better than it might otherwise do or be reasonably expected to do.
  4. Alexander Mercouris

    Alexander Mercouris Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Navalny apologies to his supporters for lying to them.
  5. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    From today's Komsomolskaya Pravda: "Почему за Навального голосовал центр, а за Собянина — спальные районы"

    Translation

    Why did they vote for Navalny in the centre and for Sobyanin in the dormitory areas?

    The election results for Moscow’s mayor have at the same time given rise to some inquiring social-research: Where were all the protest votes concentrated? [video]

    The Moscow Election Commission has some very significant figures. It turns out that Navalny was the candidate of the respectable centre, of the prestigious Leningrad District and not of the downmarket Southwest; Sobyanin was the choice of the dormitory areas.

    Take, for example, the Central Administrative District. In the Arbat Precinct: for Navalny - 35.63 %; for Sobyanin - 43.53 %. Or take Basmanny: 36.1 % - for Navalny , 41.56 % - for Sobyanin. And Zamoskvorech'e: 35.41 % - for Navalny; 42.13 % - for Sobyanin. It was almost the same thing at Meshchansky, Presnensky, Tversky, Yakimanka ...

    However, let’s just move a little in an easterly direction, to Lefortovo, and - oop-la! It’s 51.58 % for Sobyanin, and for Navalny - 26.9%. No mention of a second round taking place there. And then we have Sokolniki, where on the eve of the election Navalny attracted perhaps the biggest mass meeting of voters: for Sobyanin - 44.06 %; for Navalny - 30.68%. It was about the same in Kuntsevo, Krylatsky, and Dorogomilovo.

    If Sobyanin had not got a 50 % vote in other areas, a second round would have been unavoidable. In the residential outskirts, however, they think and vote absolutely differently to the way they do in the centre. The differences are approximately the same as those between Moscow and the rest of Russia: in a Moscow suburban district (read - Kapotnya), government candidates are more trusted than they are in spoiled and capricious downtown Moscow (read - at elite Kutuzovsky). Here, at Novo-Peredelkino, Ochakovo- Matveyevskoye; at Solntsevo and Beskudnikovo; at East and West Degunino; at both Butovo and the rest – at Bibirevo and North Medvedkovo, Sobyanin confidently stepped over the 50 % mark, gaining up to 55% of the votes.

    Surprisingly, the Moscow election map almost completely coincides with a map drawn by realtors, taking as its yardstick the cost per square metre of an apartment: where the more expensive it is, the vote percentage gained by the opposition candidate was higher, and vice versa. Why?

    • "Because for Navalny voted mostly representatives of the upper middle class, the rich", says Olga Kryshtanovskaya, department head for the study of elites at the Institute of Sociology. "However, these people are not members of the ruling elite, but rather those of the liberal professions: intellectuals, professionals with a higher education. Remember how the protest movement was jokingly called 'the fur coat revolution?'"

    • "But, these people have something to lose in the event of political upheavals: there’s the paradox."

    • "I think they are hardly likely to envisage Navalny’s coming to power... Generally speaking, the liberal idea is primarily aimed at protecting the interests of the wealthy: to allow businesses to do business without being hindered by social programmes; to have courts that protect property and so on. Navalny is the candidate of the bourgeoisie."

    FOR THE RECORDS

    Sergei Sobyanin scored 69.48 % in the Novomoskovsky administrative district: Sobyanin's minimum result was 37.3 % in the Gagarin district.

    Alexei Navalny scored 38.53 % in that same Gagarin district. The least of all votes, 14.83%, were given for Navalny in the Nekrasovka district.


    End of translation.

    We'll who'd a thunk it!

    I'm moving from Taganka (Central Administrative District) to Nekrasovka!

    :)
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
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  6. Alexander Mercouris

    Alexander Mercouris Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Fascinating, but it misses a crucial point: even in the richest districts where Navalny was strongest Sobyanin outpolled him! Navalny seems to have overtaken Sobyanin only in the Gagarin district and even there by barely a whisker. This is similar to the pattern in the Presidential election last year where despite all the protests Putin still managed to outpoll Prokhorov in the wealthy central Moscow districts (see Anatoly Karlin's article on Da Russophile about this). Of course not everyone who lives in the wealthy centre of Moscow is rich or middle class but Sobyanin must have won a fair number of middle class voters to have won in the central districts as he did.

    Incidentally the pattern of supporting the government candidate in the more outlying areas was repeated in the elections in the Moscow Region where the government won a runaway 70% victory in the gubernational election.

    The one thing I would say is that what this election again shows is how incredibly concentrated the liberal vote in Russia is. Not only is it heavily concentrated in Moscow but it is also heavily concentrated in just one part of Moscow. I am convinced that a major reason for the protests in Moscow following the parliamentary elections in 2011 is that these people felt disenfranchised since because of the strictly proportional nature of the voting system they gained no representation in the country's parliament despite their strong presence at the centre of the nation's capital. This was an unhealthy and even dangerous situation and it is understandable that it caused bitterness and a sense of grievance. The authorities seem to have understood this and the voting system for the nation's parliament has now been modified to accommodate this by bringing back first past the post constituency voting for half the parliament's seats. This should mean that we will get some liberal deputies elected for Moscow, which hopefully next time should mean that we will not get the sort of tantrum in Moscow we saw in December 2011.
  7. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Another interesting point that came to my mind when first reading that KP article translated and linked above was that despite Sobyanin's success in the outlying districts of Moscow, the apparent new darling of US political interventionists in Russia, the "Libertarian" Kichanova, was elected as a local councilor for the outlying district of South Tushino.

    No prizes for guessing whom the Lesbolibertarianka (to use Tolokonnikova's term of endearment for her) supports:

    [​IMG]

    Even more interesting, perhaps, is the fact that South Tushino is part of the North-West Administrative Area of Moscow, lying immediately adjacent to Khimki, which is situated just across the outer ring road that mostly forms Moscow city limits.

    Khimki is, of course, that place where, to paraphrase the Guardian's statement that last weekend the Chosen One, politically speaking, "gave Putin a bloody nose", the former great white Russian hope of Washington, Yevgeniya Chirikova, certainly received a bloody electoral nose off her fellow Khimki residents when she attempted to be elected Khimki mayor.

    Not even a message of support from St. Mikhail of the Gulag could help her to victory there:

    [​IMG]

    [Translation: "Wow! Mikhail Khodorkovsky is calling me to give his support. That's really inspiring!"; "A big thank-you to Mikhail Khodorkovsky for his support! Once more he has shown that you can remain human even in inhumane conditions."]

    (I wonder how he thought he could support her when he was sitting thousands of miles away from Khimki in a colony in Siberia?)

    Here's a picture taken of Chirikova with friends in happier days in her beloved Khimki forest:

    [​IMG]

    Is that a Russian feminist punk rocker standing to Chirikova's right, I wonder?

    And I do declare, that's none other than Yuri Shevchuck standing to her left! Wonder what happened to him after this:



    I should imagine many in the West would think that he has been "liquidated" for his having dared publicly to confront the Evil One over his policies. If some do think that, then I am sure they will be pleased to learn that Shevchuck was alive and well until at least last July, when he was reported as having appeared in a St. Petersburg court on defamation charges.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
  8. Russian Truth

    Russian Truth Office Registrar (13th class)

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  9. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Well news is that Navalny & Co. have asked for and been granted permission to hold yet another rally at Bolotnaya - this time on September 14th.

    I wonder why? 9,000 or so attended the September 10th post-election rally, where Navalny whined about losing unfairly and told his hamsters to await his call to take to the streets.

    Is he going to continue pushing for a re-count?

    Is he going to continue his claims of irregularities, albeit that everyone - bar "Freedom House" of course - say that the election was fair? Is that what he's been told to do?

    Following the official declaration that Sobyanin won the election, the public prosecutor has already given Navalny notification concerning the Chosen One's continuous announcements that the election is invalid. Apparently, the prosecutor believes that such announcements made by Navalny may give rise to public disorder.

    As regards these claims of an invalid vote made by Navalny, in today's Moscow Times even headbanger in chief Latynina has stated that the recent mayoral election was a fair one. The article is quite short and I shall paste it in full so that it can be used for reference after MT has taken it down:


    Finally, a Clean Election

    11 September 2013 | Issue 5210
    By Yulia Latynina

    I spent all of Sunday monitoring elections at several polling stations. I was impressed. Fair elections have returned to Moscow. Not a single vote cast for change was made in vain. True, one vote for opposition leader Alexei Navalny was counted as only about nine-tenths of a vote, but that's how the game currently works. The first task is to win according to those rules, and that's doable.

    This was the first time I have seen an elections commission that was not trying to falsify the results. It wasn't because the members were so upright and honest, but because there were so many observers present and they lacked the gall to do it openly.

    In this sense, it is absolutely wrong to whine that these elections were rigged. Just the opposite is the case. Now I have the right to say to everyone: "Go to the polls. Act as observers. Everything depends on you."
    Second, Mayor-elect Sergei Sobyanin himself wanted to win the election without fraud. Instead, his campaign staff called every single senior citizen, brought each one 6 kilograms of groceries and invited them to cast their votes in portable ballot boxes used for pensioners who rarely make it out of their apartment. This is because they know that seniors get most of their information from state-controlled television and do not use the Internet. As a result, most have never even heard of Navalny and could be counted on to vote for Sobyanin.

    At the same time, however, Navalny achieved impressive results: more than 27 percent of the vote with the help of excellent organization. In December 2011, an unorganized crowd of 100,000 managers and intellectuals gathered on Bolotnaya Ploshchad, and that was far from all of the people who supported Navalny. In Sunday's race, Navalny received 600,000 votes. Most of his supporters are not just people who protested in the streets but ordinary citizens whom Navalny and his campaign staff had managed to contact and persuade in the few short weeks before these elections. It is very likely that this trend will continue to grow in future elections.

    Fourth, with Navalny coming just a few votes short of forcing a second round of voting and opposition candidate Yevgeny Roizman winning the mayoral race in Yekaterinburg, the siloviki will have more reason to run to the Kremlin screaming, "We told you to wipe out the opposition, but you didn't listen."

    In this sense, I am glad that there was no second round of voting, just as I'm glad that there was no violence during the protests in December 2011, because a second round would have forced President Vladimir Putin into a corner. In fact, from the psychological standpoint, Putin is not so much an evildoer as he is an undersized punk. He can throw his weight around and bully others only when he meets the least resistance. But when he encounters strong opposition, he backs down.

    Thus, Putin will find it much easier to convince himself that Navalny won as many votes in a free and fair election than face the reality that he would have to initiate a full-scale dictatorship to extinguish the opposition movement.


    The result of these elections is very simple: Navalny will not go to jail, and Russia now has an opposition with which the authorities must contend.

    END

    Some questions and points that I should like to make about the Pinochet fan's comments:

    • "Fair elections have returned to Moscow." So when exactly were they previously "fair": in the USSR? - surely she doesn't believe that to have been the case! During Putin's previous ministry or that of Medvedev? - I somehow don't think she is implying that. Of course! She means in the golden Yeltsin years, as Navalny once described them, when Soviet Russia had been transformed into a land flowing with milk and honey, albeit that said rivers of milk and honey mostly flowed into off-shore accounts; when the Moscow White House suffered artillery bombardment because the drunken oaf of a president who ruled by decree did not agree with the opinions of its democratically elected deputies. Oh what happy days those must have been for Latynina!
    • Why does she write: "True, one vote for opposition leader Alexei Navalny was counted as only about nine-tenths of a vote, but that's how the game currently works"? Is she pushing for proportional representation based on social class? Remember, this is is the person who once unabashedly stated that the great unwashed should not be allowed a vote. Does she think the "cattle" are far too many and that their votes should not have parity with those of the bourgeois, who, of course, voted for Washington's Chosen One?
    • "In this sense, it is absolutely wrong to whine that these elections were rigged." Ain't that the truth though! And it's exactly what her golden boy has not stopped doing since his election defeat and, I suspect, what he's been notified to do from afar by that shining beacon of democracy on the hill.
    • "The result of these elections is very simple: Navalny will not go to jail, and Russia now has an opposition with which the authorities must contend." Interesting point of view, that, from someone who bleats about the absence of law and order in Russia. Navalny and Latynina and the rest of their ilk always wail about the rule of law being paramount in a civilized state and Russia, in their opinion is bog standard in this respect. So now she's saying that because a person achieves a 27% vote off 30% of the electorate that actually got off its collective arse to vote in the first place, then he should somehow be above the law. Navalny was found guilty in a court of law of criminal charges and given a custodial sentence. At present he is appealing against that sentence. The Moscow Times headbanger in chief now maintains that Navalny will not go to gaol if he loses his appeal simply because he came second in a two-horse race for the post of mayor of Moscow. And she talks about the necessity of the rule of law in a civilized society! Of course, Latynina would surely counter an argument such as mine with the assertion that the Russian legal system is a facade, a political organ controlled by the Evil One, thereby maintaining that the Russian judiciary is invalid and that its laws, procedures and judgments be ignored. Yet her hero, the Basket Weaver from Odintsovo, has on more than one occasion stated publicly that when he and his bourgeois clique come to power, amongst other things Putin will be imprisoned and Izvestia shut down. On his orders? Surely not by the Russian courts, because they are just a sham? So if not by his diktat, how will his threats be fulfilled? Through his courts? By means of his judges? But isn't that what the Evil One is supposed to do...?
    As regards Navalny not going to gaol, I wonder how many believe this will happen? Remember, Latynina makes no mention of the possibility of his winning his appeal against his sentence: she just categorically states that he will not be sent down simply because of the election result.

    I, personally, have little faith in Latynina's predictions. After all, it was she who confidently stated in an MT article that appeared shortly before Putin's presidential victory earlier this year that the first thing the Evil One would do if he was once again elected president would be to order an invasion of Georgia by Russian armed forces.

    I am still waiting for this to happen.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013
  10. Alexander Mercouris

    Alexander Mercouris Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    The essential point is that even Latynina admits that these elections were clean and fair.

    As for the Freedom House comment, given what Latynina says it looks even more marginal and plaintive than it reads. The only reason it can give for holding a run off is because yet again it appears to prefer Golos's vote count to that of the Moscow Electoral Commission.

    Here we see what Golos actually is. It is not a monitoring agency in any true sense. A genuinely impartial monitoring agency would not comment on the result or seek to provide its own result but would discuss whatever flaws it identified in the voting and counting system. What Golos actually is, is a US sponsored and funded, private enterprise, white ribbon parallel Electoral Commission whose job is to provide pro liberal results that differ from the official ones. That this is so is further shown by what actually happened on the election day itself. As the vote initially came in even Golos appeared to concede that Sobyanin had won a majority in the first round. As the counting however progressed and Sobyanin's lead narrowed and as it became clear that Navalny was going to contest the result Golos appeared to change its tune and say that Sobyanin had failed to win a majority in the first round. That of course is what Navalny, his supporters and their friends in the US want to hear.
  11. Alexander Mercouris

    Alexander Mercouris Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Navalny has no real choice. Since he disputes the result he has to go on broadcasting his opposition to it. When even people like Latynina say he is wrong it shows how isolated he has become.

    I may be premature in what I am going to say but I think the rally on Monday may perhaps be the moment when disillusion with Navalny amongst his followers starts to set in. He got a better result than anyone expected and his supporters must have assembled in good spirits and with high expectations. The turnout for the rally was more than respectable and much higher than had been agreed. In the event Navalny failed to rise to the occasion. First he was an hour late so that some of the people in the crowd apparently had already drifted away. Then when he did turn up, though he is a very good stump speaker, his speech appears to have been well below his usual standard. In fact it sounds like a recycling of the same speeches he made following the December 2011 elections. The mood in the country is however completely different from what it was then. The result is that he looked out of touch. He also came across as self absorbed and petulant, which given how Sobyanin and the Electoral Commission have repeatedly bent over backwards to accommodate him, also made him appear graceless as even Latynina concedes.

    It is obviously too soon to write Navalny off as a political force. Going to prison will actually help him since removing him from public view will not only reinforce his image amongst his followers as a martyr but more importantly will conceal his inadequacies. However though I may be wrong to think this I sense a line has been crossed and from now on his trajectory is downwards.
  12. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    ITAR-TASS reports that Team Navalny has canceled the September 14th rally and is pressing complaints about the election, demanding a re-ballot:

    MOSCOW, September 11. / ITAR - TASS / . Alexei Navalny's headquarters has refused to hold a rally at Bolotnaya Square, scheduled for September 14, and on Thursday is going to file a complaint with the Moscow City Court over the the election results in the capital. "The application for this rally has been withdrawn by the applicants. they have refused to hold it", ITAR-TASS has been told by Moscow deputy regional security chief Vasily Oleynik .

    "We are preparing 952 lawsuits, one of which is being addressed directly to the Moscow City Court, in order that the election results be cancelled as a whole, and the other 951 lawsuits will be directed at the Moscow City Court with jurisdiction over the district courts. These lawsuits are to cancel the results of elections in the precinct election commissions", Alexey Navalny told ITAR-TASS.

    I think people will soon become tired of Navalny's posturing, leaving only his truly devoted hamsters to squeak their appreciation of him.

    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013
  13. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Навальный подготовил грузовик жалоб
    [Navalny has prepared a truckload of complaints]


    50,000 pages of complaints!!!!

    Opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who in in the election for mayor had the support of over a quarter of Muscovites, has not abandoned his intention to have the election result canceled. In the near future he intends to file a complaint with the Moscow City Court.
    "Tomorrow morning, we are serving Moscow City Court: 1) an application to set aside the election results as a whole, and 2) 951 applications to the district court to cancel the election results ...
    ... We are bringing approximately 50,000 pages on a truck", he wrote in his blog. According to Navalny, as a basis for the submission of claims was the unequal access of candidates to the media, as well as food packages that were distributed to pensioners.

    A quarter of Muscovites voted for him?

    Surely 27% of the 30% of the electorate that voted for him does not represent 25% of Moscow's population?

    More kiddy hamsters come to worship the Annointed One:

    [​IMG]



    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013
  14. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Navalny's boxes of complaints delivered:

    [​IMG]

    He's now demanding that Sobyanin's inauguration be stopped.
  15. MarkPavelovich

    MarkPavelovich Commissar

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    Heyyyyy....wait a second. All these complaints say the same thing - "Sobyanin is a prick".
  16. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    I bet that delivery of 50,ooo plus sheets of A4 paper would have been welcomed, though, back in the good old days when toilet paper was "deficit".
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2013
  17. Russian Truth

    Russian Truth Office Registrar (13th class)

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    Speaking of Vera...This is her before her U.S. handlers took control of her life. And here is a great article that pertains to ANY election in the Moscow area and Michael McFaul. The guy was gracious enough to tell us how things work. Basically, he admits to the U.S. meddling in foreign elections. Arrogant or stupid? You decide.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A15131-2004Dec20.html

    Vera Kichanova 16-Butch.jpg
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2013
  18. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  19. Moscow Exile

    Moscow Exile Ship Secretary (11th class)

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    Following on from my previous comment, yet another argument expressed in a Moscow times opinion piece this morning that states that Navalny’s electoral defeat in Moscow, this time claiming that it was a “moral victory” for the opposition, immediately squashed by Zigfield.

    Why is she doing this?

    What method is behind her madness?

    See: Navalny’s Moral Victory Puts Kremlin In a Bind
  20. Patrick Armstrong

    Patrick Armstrong Commissar

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    Thanks for McFaul article -- what a gem! a complete admission. Hadn't s4een it before and never really imagined that one of teh players would lay it all out like that. All he failed to mention was that NATO membership was a vital component of the new democracy.

    I especially liked:
    Yet most of these groups believed that a free and fair election would mean victory for Viktor Yushchenko. And they were right.

    So what did they trhink of Yanukovich's victory the next time around I wonder?

    Excellent also in its way of laying out the tactic, especially:

    Western organizations provided training and some direct assistance to the Committee of UkrainianVoters, Ukraine's first-rate election-monitoring organization.

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