District within Moscow Identifying with Khabarovsk Protests
Staunton, August 2 – Russians in cities across the Russian Federation are identifying with and coming out into the streets in support of the Khabarovsk protests. Among them are the residents of Tushino, a Moscow district with a greater population than Khabarovsk Kray, the Region.Expert portal says (region.expert/tushino/).
This report is important not only because it highlights the extent to which the federal districts vary so enormously in size with Moscow being the most bloated but also because it shows that within the Moscow agglomeration, there are what can be described as “regionalists” in miniature, yet another reason why Muscovites today generally can’t act as a region.
As regionalist writers have pointed out before, “the establishment of a full-fledged regionalist consciousness in Moscow as a single city capable of recognizing the interests of other regions and conducting with them a federative dialogue is impossible.” Instead, most people there accept their status as the imperial center.
But the fact that some in districts like Tushino are now expressing sympathy for Khabarovsk shows that within Moscow’s current borders, there are also regionalist attitudes and that they are on the side of other regions rather than on the side of the Kremlin, Region.Expert continues.
And the editors of the portal conclude that “for future (con)federative relations on the (post) Russian space, it would be most appropriate to free Moscow from its functions as the capital and divide the Muscovtie megalopolis into several administrative units” that could function as regions rather than remain locked into an imperial mindset.