Today, I've read the story about a Russian, a Soviet citizen Sergei Krasnoperov, who was a soldier in Afghanistan in 1984 and then fled to the Mujahideen - the Muslim forces opposing the Soviet army there. Sergei, forty nine years old now, has served almost two years in Afghanistan, however according to his story, during the last months of his army service his relations
with other soldiers became unbearable. "They all joined against me and I couldn't respond. I even didn't want to flee - all I wanted was justice to those soldiers who abused me, but the officers didn't care. I didn't even have a gun at the time, or I would have just killed them." So he decided to flee and he did. He went to the nearest enemy forces and
In the Belarus Republic, there is a museum called the "Line of Stalin". It is supported by the president of Belarus (as stated on their website) and they don't curse Stalin here, they don't praise him, but they
glorify Stalin's fortification system to protect the Soviet Union. So they have a monument of Stalin with flowers and wreaths, their official logo features Stalin in what looks to me to be a heroic image:
A vintage Soviet panoramic cinema was found to be still working in Moscow. Here is a story about the place, as told by Irina M. who currently works there. The facility that was built in 1959 included twenty two cinema projectors and twenty two screens running simultaneously. Nine speakers were installed in the floor to create surround
sound. Back in 1959., the movies were created with a special rig of synchronised cameras placed in circle. It makes me think of the modern Google maps camera rigs, which are placed on cars. As Irina says, the setup could be placed on top of a car, a boat or even a moving train, and could be controlled remotely.
When I studied in a Soviet elementary school, I recall with how much importance Lenin was treated. A flawless semi-deity that incarnated in a human body that possessed multiple talents, protected the poor and hated any type of injustice in the world. That was the Lenin in my eyes at that time. I was taught that he was one of the smartest and fairest people in the history of the world. We had special mentionings of him throughout our education, which included books about the school boy, Vladimir (Lenin), and poems about
Lenin, and even our junior level Communist insignia which school boys wore carried a portrait of the young leader as well, right inside the bright small red star badge I was so proud of. I couldn't dare to have a bad thought about Lenin, and sincerely believed in his purity. Now, there are multiple Lenin relics stacked in a village hut called the "Museum of Communist Party". Figures of Lenin are next to the dirt road - a thing I don't think anyone could dare to do in earlier times.
The Buryats are people of Russia and Mongolia, numbered around 400,000 during the last census. They used to live in yurts - mobile round homes that could travel with them, and once they find a new place to stay, they set up in a matter of some hours. Usually the yurts were made of skins or felt and wooden planks. They might be in some way similar to native Indian teepees, but more rounded and
larger. However, besides Nomadic Buryats there were ones that decided to stay in one chosen place for longer, and because of this they built more permanent houses. But the round form was probably still preferred, and they didn't want to build more traditional square or rectangular shaped dwellings, so their dwellings got eight corners and looked somewhat similar to yurts.
I have here a collection of vintage Russian circus posters and wonder if other are as interested in them as I am. In my opinion, in the Soviet past the circuses could be sort of little islands of freedom, especially in the early Soviet years. They offered entertainment (and entertainments were controlled by the state, at the time), they travelled to different cities (and wandering around without a fixed place of residence was considered a crime, as far as I recall). I tried to research a
little, and it seems that there are more people sharing the same opinion - like Olga Sviblova, the head of the art and multimedia museum in Moscow, quoted as saying that "Circus and sports were the only two spots in Soviet 1930s that had freedom". And so the vintage Russian circus posters to me look different to most of the other Soviet posters - both propaganda and advertisement. I find the circus posters much more vivid and real in detail. So here they are: