Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

25 December 2012. VOR Presents… Santa Claus and other Aliases of Father Frost

00a christmas. Ded Moroz. 25.12.12

Ded Moroz (Grandpa Frost) is a traditional gift-bearing Slavic character who makes his appearance during the New Year celebrations with a big goody bag full of presents for kids. Yet, he isn’t the only one who has such a generous habit.

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00b christmas. santa claus. 25.12.12

One of the most famous of Father Frost’s colleagues is Santa Claus, with his fur-trimmed red jacket, white-cuffed pants, and a matching cap. His outfit isn’t as old as one might think; it stems from Coca-Cola Christmas advertising, which popularised this image in the 1930s.

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00c christmas. Joulupukki. Finland. santa claus. 25.12.12

In Finland, this character is better known as Joulupukki.

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00d christmas. Sinterklaas. Netherlands. santa claus. 25.12.12

In the Netherlands, he appears under the alias of Sinterklaas.

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00e christmas. Julenisse. Lapland. santa claus. 25.12.12

The woods of legendary Lapland in northernmost Sweden and Norway are home to Julenisse, a hunch-backed little old man with a potato-shaped nose. Southern Norway and Denmark can boast a similar gift-delivering spirit of Christmas called Tomte Gnome.

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00f christmas. Père Noël. France. santa claus. 25.12.12

France has two Santa Clauses for good and bad kids respectively. The good one, called Père Noël, carries a basketful of presents, whilst the strict one, named Père Chalande, wears a fur cap and a warm travel cloak and whips naughty children.

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00g christmas. Babbo Natale. Italy. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Italian Father Christmas is called Babbo Natale.

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00h christmas. Olentzero. Basque. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Basques call their Christmas wizard Olentzero. He wears homespun clothes and carries around a bottle of good Spanish wine.

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00i christmas. Mos Craciun. Romanian. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Romanians call him Mos Craciun.

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00j christmas. Kysh Babai. Tartar. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Tatar Santa Claus, Kysh Babai, goes around with a relative of Snegurochka (Snow Maiden) named Kar-Kyzy.

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00k christmas. Hızır-İlyas. Turkey. santa claus. 25.12.12

The Muslim Santa Claus is an old man in a red cap, a green robe strewn with flowers, and a matching green scarf. His name is Hızır-İlyas and he brings presents in early May.

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17 December 2012

Voice of Russia World Service

http://english.ruvr.ru/photoalbum/98306660/98306681/

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25 December 2012. Sergei Yolkin’s World. Be Ready to Have a Festive New Year’s Mood!

00 Sergei Yolkin. Be Ready to Have a Festive New Year’s Mood! 2012

Be Ready to Have a Festive New Year’s Mood!

Sergei Yolkin

2012

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Firstly, that the Defence Minister is again using military rank, as in the Soviet days, means that the so-called “Serdyukov reform” is a dead duck. It means that Russia’s no longer following Western style in having a “civilian” Defence Minister… it’s gone back to the practise of tsarist and Soviet days of having a general at the head of the Minoborony. It also hints at trouble within the siloviki. On another level, Yolkin’s poking fun at “enforced gaiety”. You can’t order folks to be happy, and that’s that…

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Army General Sergei Shoigu, the Defence Minister, gave instructions to the Voronezh Military Air Force Engineering University to foster a holiday spirit in the student dormitories, and, once again, drew attention to his conviction that cadets and soldiers should be able to take a shower when they want to, rather than once a week on a so-called “bath day”.

25 December 2012

Sergei Yolkin

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/caricature/20121225/916195571.html

25 December 2012. Sergei Yolkin’s World. Not One Bit of Our Soil! Not One Word of Our Oath!

00 Sergei Yolkin. Not One Bit of Our Soil! Not One Word of Our Oath! 2012

Not One Bit of Our Soil! Not One Word of Our Oath!

Sergei Yolkin

2012

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This is a wry comment on the fact that the military oath changed in 1998 and 1992, along with Soviet changes in 1918, 1947, and 1975, from its tsarist-era original. Yolkin appears to disparage any further tinkering with the wording. It also appears to be a puckish observation… it’s changed so many times… now, it changes yet again. It also appears to mean that people’s loyalties are for sale to the highest bidder… another multilayered Yolkin play on words and images drawn from popular and historical Russian culture

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Members of the RF Public Chamber offered a proposal to replace the word “swear” with the word “promise” (for religious reasons) in the oath taken by military recruits. The RF Gosduma is opposed to such a move.

24 December 2012

Sergei Yolkin

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/caricature/20121224/916030381.html

25 December 2012. You Can’t Make Shit Like This Up… Mitt Romney’s Son Says He Never Actually Wanted to Be President

00 Romney Racist T-shirt

Romney never criticised the racism in the GOP… any questions?

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Editor’s Foreword:

Read the following. It’s mind-blowing in its self-centred pity and angst…

BMD

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Mitt Romney‘s palpable discomfort during the 2012 election season has mostly been attributed to the fact that he’s (very likely) a robot. However, in a lengthy Boston Globe piece about what went wrong with the campaign, Romney’s eldest son Tagg offers a different explanation for his father’s poor performance… “He wanted to be president less than anyone I’ve met in my life. He had no desire to … run. If he could’ve found someone else to take his place… he would’ve been ecstatic to step aside”. The statement certainly seems to serve as a great “I told you so” moment for all those Republicans who endorsed genuinely fired-up people like Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum during the primaries, though the story also suggests the Romney campaign‘s issues extended well beyond his supposed lack of enthusiasm for the task.

The GlobeMichael Kranish (co-author of The Real Romney) confirms that those closest to Romney, such as Tagg and wife Ann, clashed with his staff over strategy, especially when it came to humanising the candidate. The story blames campaign manager Stuart Stevens for the unremitting focus on the dreary economy and the reluctance to share some of the more appealing elements of Romney’s biography with the public. When Tagg finally convinced RNC organisers to feature the grateful parents of a terminally-ill 14-year-old Mormon boy Romney once comforted, they were put onstage before any of the big networks even tuned in {Big deal. If the kid wasn’t a Mormon, that’d be news. It just proves that many Mormons are good to their own, but view us “Gentiles” as two-legged cockroaches: editor}.

There are also criticisms of the campaign’s infrastructure… the organisation employed a mere 500 paid workers nationwide (less than the Obama team dedicated to Florida alone) and failed to make good use of social media and other technology. As Romney’s digital director Zac Moffatt explained, they simply didn’t have as much time as Obama did to prepare. Moffatt recalled worrying about early on, “Can we do 80 percent of what the Obama campaign is doing, in 20 percent of the time, at 10 percent of the cost?” Tagg also told the Globe that his father hopes to use what he learned during the campaign to help Republican leaders make changes to the way the party is run, saying, “Having been through it, you know so much more than when you haven’t”. Perhaps, the first thing Romney should suggest for the next go-around is picking a nominee who actually wants to be there.

23 December 2012

Andre Tartar

New York

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2012/12/mitts-son-says-he-never-wanted-to-be-president.html

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Editor’s Afterword:

”I really didn’t want to be president!” If that were so, why did Wet Willy run? Why did he spend millions of his own money and millions of the Republican Party’s money? Why did he order fireworks in Boston, as he was convinced that he was going to win? In short, GIGO all around. Wet Willy’s nothing but a spoilt brat who never grew up. His corporate daddy bought him a phony “clergy” deferment in the Vietnam War and gave him the seed-stake to enter business… that is, Wet Willy had the ways greased for him and he never had to do anything for himself. This story tells you volumes about the Romneys. Aren’t you glad that the Prez did win the election? After all, Willard didn’t want it… his son said so…

What a bunch of sore losers and incompetent tossers…

BMD

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