Voices from Russia

Saturday, 22 January 2011

THIS is How the Centre Greets a LEGIT First Hierarch… His Holiness and President Medvedev Greet Archbishop Chrysostomos of Cyprus








Note well that all major political and social figures in Russia snubbed Fathausen. President Medvedev refused to meet him… PM Putin refused to meet him… Mayor Sobyanin refused to meet him. Fathausen met with with no major cultural or artistic figures, either. I know that the OCA fanatics are jumping up and down that this is “only an unofficial trip”. Sure… the last time he went on a vestment buying spree, if you are to believe Slacker Matusiak and the SVS/Syosset gang.

The last time, he was allowed to speak at PSTGU… this time, he wasn’t. He supposedly spoke at the MDA, but an informant tells me that only a small set went to see him (the Aleksandr Men/Aleksandr Schmemann nutters, no doubt), it was held in a small chapel that couldn’t hold the entire student body, in any case. In short, only a tiny minority of the students met with him. The rector made himself scarce, as did Professor Osipov. There was nothing whatsoever posted on his whereabouts on Friday 21 January, and there was no notice taken of his departure on Saturday 22 January. Indeed, there was no note on oca.org as of 19.30 EDT 22 January 2011 announcing his arrival back in the USA. Don’t hold your breath… Slacker Matusiak has a track record on reporting important news… he’s Slowpoke Rodríguez , not Speedy Gonzales.

Nevertheless, KMG and Dmitri Anatolyevich both rolled out the red carpet for Vladyki Chrysostomos, and here are the high-res images to prove it. Again, El Gordo got none of this… NADA. Shows you what the Centre thinks of him, no?



As Bad as Bush

Filed under: Barack Obama,George W. Bush,politics,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

Hugo Chávez

Vasili Nesterenko


This is a part of a four-painting series of Latin American leaders (all excoriated by the American wingnuts, by the way). Vasili Nesterenko (1967- ) is a People’s Artist of Russia and a member of the Russian Academy of Fine Arts. He is both a committed leftist and a devout Orthodox Christian (he was one of the painters who did the interior iconography at the rebuilt Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow).


His enemies call him a tyrant and a dictator, but he is neither. Hugo Chávez is a tireless champion of the poor and a committed Christian socialist. The only difference between Chávez’s type of Christianity and Barack Obama’s, is that Chavez walks the walk.

For example, on Tuesday, Chávez used his powers under the new “enabling laws” to enact the “Law for Dignified Refuge”, a presidential decree that mandates “dignified and humane” housing for all Venezuelans. The Venezuelan parliament approved the controversial (and temporary) enabling laws because the country faced an unprecedented housing crisis due to the massive floods in December.

More than 125,000 people lost their homes in the disaster, requiring a speedy response from the government. Chávez swung into action immediately, turning the presidential palace into a homeless shelter, and initiating a campaign to construct permanent housing for the victims. Now, he has pushed through landmark legislation that will legally require the government to help the homeless.

Contrast Chávez’s response to Obama’s during the BP oil spill. BP was allowed to wreak havoc on the environment and destroy people’s livelihood without any consequences. In fact, Obama even provided cover for the oil giant by appearing in public relations “I feel your pain” photo-ops on a beach in Louisiana that were intended to divert public rage away from BP. So, now the fishing and shrimping industries are devastated, sensitive estuaries and ecosystems have been destroyed, and the level of toxins in the bloodstreams of people living in the region have skyrocketed. And, worst of all, BP has gotten off Scot-free. Thanks, Barack.

Now, imagine what would have happened if Chávez had been in charge. BP’s stateside operations would have been shut down, their assets would have been seized, and Tony Hayward and his buddies would have been thrown in the hoosegow. Got a problem with that?

Last week, while Obama was singing the praises of “deregulation” on the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal (“… the rules have gotten out of balance, placing unreasonable burdens on business… burdens that have stifled innovation and have had a chilling effect on growth and jobs”), and First Lady Michelle Obama was hawking “healthy foods” for food behemoth Wal-Mart in the national media, Chávez was busy transforming shelters into “institutions of the state” to make sure that people had a place to stay while they get back on their feet again.

The new law stipulates that these people be provided with food and medical assistance (Venezuela has universal health care) as well as “scholarships, pensions and special allotments of resources” depending on their needs. The new state facilities that are being set up by Chávez will focus primarily on “the most vulnerable population; the children, adolescents, seniors, people with disabilities, and pregnant women. It’s not a question of the government wanting to do this or not”, said Chávez. “It is now a legal obligation”. (venezuelanalysis.com)

Right on. And how has Washington reacted to Chávez’s emergency programmes and new laws? Here’s an excerpt from a recent article by expat Eva Golinger that sums it up pretty well:

This week, (Venezuelan) opposition leaders will meet with their counterparts in Washington. They have already said their mission is to seek more aid to help remove President Chávez from power. Unfortunately, their undemocratic actions have already been welcomed in the US Capitol. Representative Connie Mack (R-FL), now head of the House Sub-Committee on Foreign Relations for the Western Hemisphere, announced on the first day of Congress that his one goal this year is to place Venezuela on the list of “state sponsors of terrorism”. And Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), now head of the House Foreign Relations Committee, has backed that objective; even going as far as to publicly state she would welcome the “assassination of Fidel Castro or any other repressive leader” such as Hugo Chávez.

Setting the Record Straight on Venezuela and Hugo Chavez, Eva Golinger, Global Research

Surprised? Don’t be. Any foreign leader who attempts to control his country’s resources, improve human rights, or distribute the nation’s wealth more equally among its people, is the de facto enemy of the United States. People thought that things might change under Obama, but they were wrong. He’s as bad as Bush.

22 January 2011

Mike Whitney


Editor’s Note:

The Neoliberal scummers in the USA fear the growing BRIC (Brazil-Russia-India-China) coalition, and are doing everything to prevent this coalition from growing into an actual alliance. They are right to fear this, for the BRIC countries would dominate the Eurasian world-island and South America, too. The “West” would be reduced to the countries of the Anglosphere (US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand). Venezuela is part of this movement. Two years ago, President Medvedev visited Caracas to meet with President Chávez. In addition, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill has met with President Chávez and they had a cordial discussion (whether it occurred when KMG was Patriarch or when he was head of the DECR, I don’t recall offhand).

The USA under the Neoliberal Free Marketers is the pre-eminent rogue on the planet. If the USA perceives a country as weaker than it is, it immediately attacks (see Serbia, Iraq, and Afghanistan), if it’s perceived as being able of throwing back American forces (Russia and China, plus all states that have implicit support from these two), the country concerned is excoriated and called names by the Corporate Media. The USA cannot touch Venezuela because it has implicit guarantees from Russia. Don’t forget, the battlecruiser Pyotr Veliki, the largest surface combatant in the Russian fleet, visited Venezuela. Besides that, long-range aircraft of Russian Naval Aviation have landed in Venezuela. It’s no stretch to assume that Russia has placed Venezuela under its protection.

You see, the Imperium Americanum is crumbling… our economy is collapsing under the weight of the endless wars waged by the Neoliberals. Frankly, there’s no money left to threaten Venezuela or Iran, let alone Russia or China. I don’t believe that many wingnuts have come to grips with that. Pride cometh before a fall… and that’s what we’re seeing from the Republicans. The only questions are “when”… “where”… “how”… not “if”. American forces will fail one of these days, and the shock of that will ripple throughout the American political system (that almost happened in Ossetia… America’s clients were whipped by the Russians). God help us when it does happen, for that would be the time when a demagogue would arise… I do pray that we are spared such a dark night.

There’s more to this than what’s immediately apparent. Venezuela is only a pretext… Cuba is only a ploy… shall the oligarchs gain full power à la 1984? One hopes not…


A Photo Essay. The Blessing of the Cossack Banners in the Assumption Cathedral on 22 January 2011






Patriarch Kirill Shall Bless Cossack Banners in the Kremlin Cathedral of the Assumption

An anonymous 14th century icon of the Mother of God “of the Don”, the special protectoress of all Cossacks.


On Saturday, 22 January, Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias will bless the flags and banners of Cossack organisations registered by the Russian state at the Assumption Cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin. The patriarch will hold the ceremony after the Divine Liturgy, which His Holiness will concelebrate with Archbishop Chrysostomos Demetriou of New Justiniana and All Cyprus (the First Hierarch of the Local Church of Cyprus), Bishop Kirill Pokrovsky of Pavlovsky Posad, and other Russian and foreign hierarchs and clergy for the feastday of St Philip the Wonderworker, Metropolitan of Moscow and all the Russias, the patriarchal press service reported to Interfax-Religion on Thursday. Aleksandr Beglov, the deputy head of the RF Presidential Administration and the chairman of the Presidential Council for the Cossacks, G V Vilinbakhov, Chairman of the RF Presidential Council for Heraldry and RF State King of Arms of the Russian Federation, shall attend the ceremony, along with priests, atamans, and Cossacks of 11 different communities. The cadets of the M A Sholokhov Cossack Cadet Corps shall also be present. At the conclusion of the service, Patriarch Kirill will hand the banners over to the atamans

Speaking in October 2009, at a session of the Presidential Council for the Cossacks in Novocherkassk, Patriarch Kirill urged his audience to revive the former glory of the Cossacks, and said that he took all Cossack communities “under his particular patriarchal protection”. In March 2010, the MP Holy Synod established a Synodal Committee for Cooperation with the Cossacks, headed by Bishop Kirill Pokrovsky of Pavlovsky Posad, the superior of the Donskoi Monastery. Later, His Holiness announced that the feastday of the Icon of the Mother of God “of the Don”, 1 September, would be a special festival for all Cossacks.

20/22 January 2011




Editor’s Note:

This was a gigantic Dixie Fry… guess who wasn’t invited to dinner? Note well that His Holiness refused to invite JP to this shindig… as you can see from the guest list, it was IMPORTANT. By not inviting El Gordo, His Nibs told the world that Fathausen’s fate was of no matter to him. If he survives, so be it… if he founders, so be it. In my opinion, Nibs is saying sotto voce, “Will no one rid me of this turbulent priest?”

Keep your eye on Melchisedek Pleska… like Archbishop Mark Golovkov (a very substantial sort), he’s quiet… yet, MP may be “the last honest man in the OCA”. Always be wary of loudmouths like Alfeyev or Paffhausen… give me a bishop who keeps his mouth shut and gets things done… that’s the ticket for me… and I think that many of you out there think the same way as I do!


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