Thursday, June 30, 2016
It Means Those 3 Stories in 1 Newsletter
1. By now it's old news that Britain has voted to leave the European Union – but what does that mean for Russia? Some pundits say Brexit will be great for finance-savvy Russians in the UK and Europe; to others, it’s the personal failure of United States president Barack Obama. Just how much it'll weaken the EU and set the scene for a new role for Russia in Europe remains to be seen
2. Sorting out territorial claims is child's play. Literally: a school in the South Ural Mountains put on a play featuring a kid in a Putin mask claiming that Alaska would soon again be Russian territory. That puts it next in line after Crimea, but beating out the Kuril Islands, currently disputed territory between Russia and Japan. The theatrical explanation: “We take only our own lands.” To cede or not to cede, that is the question.
3. It’s a bridge! It’s a rocket! It’s Mother Russia herself! Nope: it's the latest image to grace Russian banknotes. That may sound anticlimactic, but Russia’s Central Bank has launched a contest for citizens to submit design ideas for the new 200 and 2000 ruble notes. The actual prints may not show up for a few years yet, but it only takes a dream to boost the economy, right?
Russian Cultural Literacy
The Russian ruble's had a rocky road. And that’s not a jibe at the economy – that’s the norm when you go through a few dozen currency designs in a century. Whether the imperial coat of arms, a locomotive, an Olympic snowboarder, or a monument from any number of Russian towns and cities, there’s an art to creating currency – and to keeping it afloat. Okay, that one was a jibe at the economy.
Quote of the Week
"Rural, provincial, working Britain said ‘no’ to the union created by the financial mafia, globalists, and the rest of them."
—Russian ultranationalist politician Vladimir Zhirinovsky on the “great feat” accomplished by British folks who voted for Britain’s exit from the European Union.
In Odder News
Want more where this comes from? Give your inbox the gift of TWERF, our Thursday newsletter on the quirkiest, obscurest, and Russianest of Russian happenings of the week.
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This week was full of wins for Russia: a famous photographer, everyone who watched Putin's call-in, and lawmakers making it harder to get foreign aid. So, a loss for Russians getting foreign aid.
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Victory Day, marking the 71st anniversary of the end of WWII, was celebrated this Monday. Here are the ups, downs, and nonsequiturs of the occasion.
Russia's physics-defying display at Eurovision. Bullying via dairy products. Plus some saucy presidential pecking – on the lips.
Politicians are people just like us. They get millions of Instagram responses for a lost pet and do folkdances in front of world leaders. Just a day in the life.
Sir Elton John's much-vaunted visit with Putin, Eurovision for kids, setting doors on fire, and other great performances – all in one little week.
The British are out to get Russian values and Russian naval vessels alike this week. Scroll down enough and there's also a cat pic.