Staunton, May 11 – The tragic shooting in the Kazan school today has had three predictable responses: First, many Russians see this as something new for their country. Second, they fear that this is the spread of an American problem to Russia: they even refer to this as “a Russian Columbine.” And third, they are very uncertain about what could or should be done.
In reality, however, this is not a new problem for Russia. As Ramazan Alpaut of the IdelReal portal notes, there have been many such school incidents in Russia and even in the Middle Volga in recent years. He even provides a list of some but far from all of these tragedies (idelreal.org/a/31249158.html).
Moreover, such incidents are hardly an American import. While some of those who carry out these attacks may be influenced by stories from the US, there is a powerful and violent youth culture in Russia itself (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2019/04/is-there-something-worse-than-cult-of.html) and guns are far more available in Russia than many in the West think (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2020/11/duma-moves-to-tighten-controls-on.html).
And finally, Russians are just as uncertain as Americans are as to how or even whether such actions can be anticipated or prevented. Some call for more gun control, others dismiss that as unrealistic or even counterproductive, and still others use this case to advance their own agendas such as restricting Internet access (znak.com/2021-05-12/iniciativy_raznoy_stepeni_adekvatnosti_po_sledam_tragedii_v_kazani, rosbalt.ru/russia/2021/05/12/1901091.html and znak.com/2021-05-11/na_fone_tragedii_v_kazani_volodin_predlozhil_obsudit_zapret_na_anonimnost_v_internete