April 24, 2022

What the Invasion Means for Russians


What the Invasion Means for Russians
Putin addresses a crowd at a rally, March 18, 2022. Above him appear the words "We don't abandon our own." Sputnik News, an affiliate of the Russian state.

The news out of Ukraine is shocking. Refugees on the run from their homes, starving pets, and tales of war crimes. Ukraine and its people are victims, and they're fighting bravely despite overwhelming odds.

Yet the Russian populace doesn't appear to have a happy immediate future either.

Hundreds of thousands of citizens have fled abroad, typically those with the means, diplomas, and skills to allow them to do so, applying their talents away from their homeland. Sanctions on imports mean that Russia will have to grow almost all of its own food. Russian athletes are barred from competing in some sports. Most international airlines have stopped all inbound and outbound flights, and Boeing and Airbus have repossessed all aircraft operated by Russian carriers, forcing them to rely on domestic and Chinese-built craft (although the winds are shifting away from that direction, too).

But what does this mean for the everyday Russian? Interviews with locals shed some light. 

Medical supplies manufactured in Germany, like replacement joints, medication, or dental disinfectants, can no longer be imported. Car parts can longer be imported, so it may be time to invest in a poorer-quality local build. Food quality and variety will worsen to whatever can be grown within the borders of Russia and its friendly neighbors. And with the current sentence of fifteen years for speaking out, journalists and protesters have had to be furtive.

All the progress of Russia's globalization for the past thirty years has been erased in a matter of weeks. Russia is backtracking: this level of closure and isolation hasn't been seen since Soviet times. And at the end of the day, the Russian people themselves will suffer.

You Might Also Like

This is How the War Ends
  • March 09, 2022

This is How the War Ends

Those in power need to seek a way to end the war that could be agreed to by Ukraine, Russia, Europe, and the US. It seems a tall order, but really it’s not that hard to envision.
Annihilating Mariupol: When is it a War Crime?
  • March 31, 2022

Annihilating Mariupol: When is it a War Crime?

At least eighty percent of Mariupol has been destroyed or damaged. An account of what has happened in the city through the eyes of two refugees – Alla, 87 years old, and Denis Hulai, 24 – both of whom managed to escape with their families.
Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

Test your knowledge of the Russian language, Russian history and society with these 22 challenging puzzles taken from the pages of Russian Life magazine. Most all the clues are in English, but you must fill in the answers in Russian. If you get stumped, of course all the puzzles have answers printed at the back of the book.
At the Circus

At the Circus

This wonderful novella by Alexander Kuprin tells the story of the wrestler Arbuzov and his battle against a renowned American wrestler. Rich in detail and characterization, At the Circus brims with excitement and life. You can smell the sawdust in the big top, see the vivid and colorful characters, sense the tension build as Arbuzov readies to face off against the American.
The Latchkey Murders

The Latchkey Murders

Senior Lieutenant Pavel Matyushkin is back on the case in this prequel to the popular mystery Murder at the Dacha, in which a serial killer is on the loose in Khrushchev’s Moscow...
Fearful Majesty

Fearful Majesty

This acclaimed biography of one of Russia’s most important and tyrannical rulers is not only a rich, readable biography, it is also surprisingly timely, revealing how many of the issues Russia faces today have their roots in Ivan’s reign.
Driving Down Russia's Spine

Driving Down Russia's Spine

The story of the epic Spine of Russia trip, intertwining fascinating subject profiles with digressions into historical and cultural themes relevant to understanding modern Russia. 
The Little Golden Calf

The Little Golden Calf

Our edition of The Little Golden Calf, one of the greatest Russian satires ever, is the first new translation of this classic novel in nearly fifty years. It is also the first unabridged, uncensored English translation ever, and is 100% true to the original 1931 serial publication in the Russian journal 30 Dnei. Anne O. Fisher’s translation is copiously annotated, and includes an introduction by Alexandra Ilf, the daughter of one of the book’s two co-authors.
The Little Humpbacked Horse

The Little Humpbacked Horse

A beloved Russian classic about a resourceful Russian peasant, Vanya, and his miracle-working horse, who together undergo various trials, exploits and adventures at the whim of a laughable tsar, told in rich, narrative poetry.
Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

A book that dares to explore the humanity of priests and pilgrims, saints and sinners, Faith & Humor has been both a runaway bestseller in Russia and the focus of heated controversy – as often happens when a thoughtful writer takes on sacred cows. The stories, aphorisms, anecdotes, dialogues and adventures in this volume comprise an encyclopedia of modern Russian Orthodoxy, and thereby of Russian life.
Russia Rules

Russia Rules

From the shores of the White Sea to Moscow and the Northern Caucasus, Russian Rules is a high-speed thriller based on actual events, terrifying possibilities, and some really stupid decisions.
The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

This exciting new trilogy by a Russian author – who has been compared to Orhan Pamuk and Umberto Eco – vividly recreates a lost world, yet its passions and characters are entirely relevant to the present day. Full of mystery, memorable characters, and non-stop adventure, The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas is a must read for lovers of historical fiction and international thrillers.  
Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

This astonishingly gripping autobiography by the founder of the Russian Women’s Death Battallion in World War I is an eye-opening documentary of life before, during and after the Bolshevik Revolution.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Latest Posts

Our Contacts

Russian Life
PO Box 567
Montpelier VT 05601-0567

802-223-4955