Voices from Russia

Sunday, 3 August 2008

Solzhenitsyn Dies at 89 (Interfax)

He was a man who was the personification of the fact that the truth is always stronger than fear.

The renowned Russian author and Nobel Prize laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn passed away in the early hours of Monday in Moscow. Preliminary information, passed to Interfax from sources in Moscow literary circles, indicate that the famous writer died of a stroke.

Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn was born in Kislovodsk on 11 December 1918. During World War II, he fought at the front as an artillery officer, but, he started to think critically on public affairs. In January 1945, he was arrested and spent eight years in labour camps for remarks about Stalin in his letters. In the winter of 1952, he was diagnosed with cancer, and he received his first operation for it whilst he was still in the camp. After his release from custody in 1953, he taught mathematics in provincial schools in Ryazan.

Solzhenitsyn only became widely-known after the publication of his novella One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (Odin den Ivana Denisovicha) by Aleksandr Tvardovsky in the “thick journal” Novy Mir (New World) in 1962. Several of his stories and poems were published in the Soviet Union. His reputation increased with the novels The First Circle (v Kruge Pervom) and Cancer Ward (Rakovy Korpus).

However, he received his greatest acclaim for his historical/polemical works about Russian in the 20th century. Due to the publication of Ivan Denisovich, he received many letters from former prisoners, which became the basis for The Gulag Archipelago (Arhipelag GULag), a work dedicated to the Stalinist terror. Over two decades, from 1962 to 1974, he actively fought the communist régime in the USSR. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1970, and the academy cited “the ethical force with which he has pursued the indispensable traditions of Russian literature”. In Paris, the first version of the novel August 1914 (Avgust Chetyrnadtsatogo) was published in 1971. On 13 February 1974, he was expelled from the USSR by the Soviet government. In 1976, he moved with his family from Europe to Cavendish in Vermont (USA), where he worked on the novel-cycle, The Red Wheel (Krasnoye Koleso).

During the era of perestroika, the attitude to Solzhenitsyn changed in the USSR, and many of his works were published in Russia for the first time. His Russian citizenship was restored at the beginning of the 90s, and he returned to Russia on 27 May 1994, flying from the USA to Vladivostok with his family, and, after travelling through the entire length of the country by train, he finished his journey in Moscow, where he settled, having returned to his native homeland for good.

4 August 2008




Editor’s Note:

Aleksandr Isaevich was a man of uncompromising honesty and integrity. Therefore, his words on the present twisting of the truth by the contemporary Ukrainian nationalist government, spoken earlier this year, bear repeating. In an interview with the newspaper Izvestiya, he explained that the famine was caused by the corrupt ideals of the Communist regime, under which all suffered equally. It was not an assault by the Russian people against the people of the Ukraine, and that the wish to view it as such is only a recent development.

“This provocative outcry of genocide was voiced only decades later. At first, it thrived secretly in the stale chauvinist minds opposing the ‘bloody Russians’. Now, it has got hold of political minds in the modern Ukraine. It seems they’ve surpassed the wild suggestions of the Bolshevik propaganda machine. ‘To the parliaments of the world’… what a nice teaser for Western ears. They have never cared about our history. All they need is a fable, no matter how loony it appears”.

We should heed such wisdom. There is no room in our contemporary world for such dishonest “revisions of history”. Let us honour a great man, an honest patriot, and pious Orthodox Christian by not only listening, but, by acting upon his words. Let us oppose all revisers of history, be they of the left or of the right. That would be a fitting memorial to Aleksandr Isaevich.

Nobel winner accuses Ukrainian authorities of ‘historical revisionism’



Vechnaya Pamyat, rab bozhii Aleksandr! Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn dies at 89

Filed under: history,Orthodox life,patriotic,Russian,Soviet period — 01varvara @ 00.00

Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn (1918-2008), Nobel Prize laureate, Russian patriot and pious Orthodox Christian

The news has just flashed from Moscow, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn died in Moscow at the age of 89. No doubt, his final obsequities shall be held in the Khram Spasitelya, presided over by His Holiness. In addition, President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin shall lead the mourners.

There is nothing to be said. That is how great he was. Pray for repose of the soul of a great man and soulful writer. Russia and the world were the better for his life, and we are all diminished by his passing.

Vechnaya pamyat, rab bozhii Aleksandr!

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Monday 4 August 2008

Albany NY

3 August 2008. A Day at the Races…

Filed under: China,international organisations,Olympics,patriotic,Russian,sport — 01varvara @ 00.00

Wall of Reconciliation set up in Olympic Village

Olympic Village complex

A Wall of Reconciliation was set up in the Olympic Village and any sportsman can leave on it his wishes for world peace. The president of the International Olympic Committee, Jacques Rogge, was the first to write a note on it. He noted that there are various conflicts and civil wars in the contemporary world, but, the Olympic Village would be the only place where conflict will not be allowed. Representatives from 205 Olympic countries will arrive in Beijing and will live in peace, regardless of ethnic, religious, sexual, cultural, or language differences. All this should be an important signal for rest of the world, M Rogge emphasised.

2 August 2008


FC Lokomotiv of Moscow advances to the final of the Railway Cup

Logo of FC Lokomotiv

FC Lokomotiv of Moscow advanced to the final of the Railway Cup after defeating London’s FC Chelsea 5-4 on penalties. The match ended in a 1-1 draw. Earlier, FC Seville of Spain defeated Italy’s FC Milan 1-0. Chelsea and Milan play for the third place and Lokomotiv and Seville for the first place.

2 August 2008


Russia to defend athletes barred from the Beijing Olympics

Vitaly Mutko (1958- ), Minister of Sport, Tourism, and Youth Policy

Vitaly Mutko, Minister for Sports, Tourism, and Youth Policy, said Russia would defend its athletes who were provisionally barred from the Beijing Olympics a week before the Games. The International Association of Athletics Federations suspended 5 Russian female racers, accusing them of tampering with urine samples in an attempt to pass doping tests. The IAAF based its conclusions on the analysis of samples taken from March to August 2007. Russian expert Aleksandr Derevoyedov suspects that last year’s samples might have been substituted or falsified. At least 3 of the suspended athletes were Olympic medal hopefuls.

3 August 2008


Voice of Russia World Service

FC Spartak Moscow set to face FC Dynamo Kiev for Champions League spot

FC Spartak Moscow look set to dispute a place in the group stages of the Champions League with old rival FC Dynamo Kiev. The draw for the third qualifying round of Europe’s most prestigious club competition took place Friday at UEFA HQ in Nyon, Switzerland. FC Spartak will play the winners of the second qualifying round tie between FC Dynamo Kiev and the Irish champions, FC Drogheda United. The Ukrainians won the first leg in Ireland 2-1, and are overwhelming favourites to make the next round.

Spartak and Dynamo have a long rivalry stretching back to the Soviet era, when the two sides regularly battled for honours. Their meetings since the break-up of the Soviet Union have been a lot less frequent, but the rivalry between the fans lost none of its edge. The two sides last met in Israel in the pre-season Channel One Cup. Dynamo Kiev, currently managed by former Lokomotiv Moscow trainer, Yuri Syomin, ran out convincing 3-0 winners. Both sides finished second in their respective championships last year. The first leg of the tie will take place in Moscow.

Other third round qualifying ties include FC Twente, managed by former England manager, Steve McClaren, against Arsenal. Barcelona, who beat Arsenal in the 2006 Champions League final, takes on the winners of Moldova’s FC Sherif and Sparta Prague. Liverpool will face the Belgians Standard Liege. The matches will take place on 12/13 August and 26/27 August. Russian champions FC Zenit St Petersburg, who on Friday tuned down an offer from Tottenham Hotspur for their striker Andrey Arshavin, will enter the tournament in the group stage, which begins on 16 September.

1 August 208


FC Chelsea in Moscow for Russian Railways Cup

Logo of FC Chelsea

English Premier League side FC Chelsea is in Moscow for two pre-season matches, including a game against FC Lokomotiv on Friday. The games come a little over two months after the side, owned by Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, lost in the Russian capital to FC Manchester United in the Champions League final.

Chelsea faces Lokomotiv at 21.15 Moscow time (17.15 GMT, 13.15 EDT). The match is part of the annual Russian Railways Cup. Italy’s AC Milan and the Spanish side Sevilla will also take part, facing each other in the other semi-final immediately beforehand. Russian Railways is FC Lokomotiv’s main sponsor. The two semi-finals will take place at Lokomotiv’s Cherkizovo stadium in the northeast of Moscow. The final and the match for 3rd and 4th place are both on 3 August at the same venue.

Chelsea’s chief executive Peter Kenyon earlier told the sports.ru website that the matches would give the club a chance to become closer to their Russian fans. This is the first year that Chelsea has entered the competition. All the sides have fielded their strongest squads, although Chelsea’s Didier Drogba and Milan’s Ronaldo will miss the tournament due to injury. Chelsea lost on penalties to Manchester United in the Champions League final, played at Moscow’s Luzhniki stadium on 21 May, after the game had ended 1-1. Their manager, Israeli Avram Grant, was sacked after the defeat.

1 August 2008



Russian Fans are going to Beijing to Root for our Olympians

Filed under: China,international organisations,Olympics,patriotic,Russian,sport — 01varvara @ 00.00

At least 5,000 Russian fans will be on hand daily to root for their teams during the Beijing Olympic Games. More than 30,000 tickets were sold to Russian fans for different events, beginning with the opening ceremony and ending with the formal conclusion of the Games. Russian fans are sure that their support shall help the performance of their athletes at the Olympics. Indeed, the outcome of a match depends on the support of the fans in the stands. We can hardly outshout the Chinese fans; they shall be the overwhelming majority in the stands. However, the fans intend giving the Russian teams all the necessary emotional support they need, they know that they can do this.

“The brisk demand for Olympic tickets demonstrates how keen Russians are on sport”, said Aleksandr Ratner, the director of Olimpiskaya Panorama (Olympic Panorama), the exclusive agent for Olympic ticket sales in the RF. “Without a doubt, the most popular tickets are for tennis, track-and-field, and artistic gymnastics. However, team sports are also popular, especially the quarter-finals in basketball and volleyball. Many have asked about the availability of tickets for youth events. Unfortunately, there are not many tickets to these matches. Interestingly, there has been a strong demand for tickets to the Olympic football tournament, even though no Russian team plays in either the men’s or the women’s division”.

Every fan that goes to China shall have complete medical insurance coverage and have full information on everything available to them during their stay in China. There are going to depart from Moscow in two “waves”. The first contingent of happy fans shall fly from Moscow on 6 and 7 August, and return on 16 to 18 August. The second contingent of fans to root for the Russian side shall depart from Moscow on 15 August.

31 July 2008

Voice of Russia World Service


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