Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
Excerpts from the JRL E-Mail Community :: Founded and Edited by David Johnson

#10 - JRL 7238
No. 44, Thursday, June 23, 2003
Translated by Luba Schwartzman

ISSUE SUBJECT: There will be no satire in Russia these days at least not on television, Viktor Shenderovich told Novaya Gazeta correspondent Natalia Chernova, the author of No More Free Cheese in the Mousetrap. Where satire is forbidden, including satire aimed at the ruling administration, food begins to disappear. And then, the people who want this food. This happened in East Germany and in North Korea. The disappearance of the opposition means an end to political journalism and political satire. If they are eliminated, it is impossible to protect human rights. The categorical rejection of my program by federal and private channels means one of two things. Either my program a two-time laureate of the TEFI television industry prize rapidly declined in quality (which I know is not true), or there is pressure on the management. Half a million Muscovites watched Free Cheese. Thats a lot of people. I am sad to say goodbye to them.

  ISSUE CIRCUMSTANCES: Novaya Gazeta columnist Elena Milashina tells the truth about the sinking of the Kursk nuclear submarine in Lawyers Trick. A lawsuit on the protection of honor, integrity and professional reputation was discussed at Moscows Presnenskii Court on Thursday. The suit was submitted by Attorney Boris Kuznetsov, who represents the families of 40 submariners who died in the Kursk. The defendants are Chief Medical Expert of the Ministry of Defense Viktor Kalugin and Deputy Head of Naval Navigation Sergei Kozlov. Kuznetsov also has a case against Deputy Chief Military Prosecutor Anatoly Ponamarenko and the anchor of the Chelovek i Zakon program, Aleksei Pimanov, in the Moscow City Court. Kuznetsov had achieved the declassification of materials from the criminal case and concluded that sailors in the 9th sector had survived for at least two and a half days. Kuznetsovs demand for a re-investigation of the proper order of the rescue operation, was rejected by military officials, who offered personal insults, rather than relevant evidence. Now the lawyer is trying to establish a dialogue with the Ministry of the Defense through the civil court. Judge Igor Tyulenev scheduled the beginning of the trial for August 14, 2003, the third anniversary of the sinking of the Kursk nuclear submarine.

  ISSUE DETAILS: Corruption creates collaboration and collaboration creates loyalty writes Novaya Gazeta columnist Yulia Latynina in White Clan, Black Clan. Russian laws are being perfected and perfected; Russia has been admitted into the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The problem is that there are no laws in Russia -- only personal relations. Of course, laws are written and constantly perfected, but no one abides by them. This is the way the government works. Whenever someone is being persecuted for breaking the law whether Gusinsky, Berezovsky, Soldovsky or Shefler this is a result of personal grudges of a quest for personal gain. Where there are no laws, there can be no private property. And if a minister or governor has a right to his share in a factory, he will get it. If he does not get it, one of three things will happen: The minister will be replaced, or the factory will be sacked, or someone else will get the share -- for protection. The nation has no democratic system distributing power among the legislative, executive and judicial branches. The executive branch has all the controls. We should not even talk about the judicial branch. In a country of oligarchs there is less stupidity and more greed. There is no unity, either. There are those whove made arrangements with the power structures. There are those who flock around the government, trying to get benefits or taxes on import automobiles. But, the higher the share of administrative money in the company, the greater the consequences when that money is removed. Transparency is the only thing that can save the economy but it will destroy the existing political system. This is why expressing the desire for transparency can result in accusations of planning a coup detat. And the people? The people will start talking when oil prices drop. The last time they fell, the ruble collapsed as well as Kirienkos government. The time before last the Soviet Union collapsed.


Oil and People. Special report from the Sakhalin. Wind of Changes as a Weapon of Mass Deterioration, by Yekaterina Ignatova.

  The real instigators of the Spartak Scandal are still unknown. Soccer is a Gambling Game, by Ruslan Dubov.

Contact Information for Novaya Gazeta
(095) 923-9485

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