Saturday, September 24, 2022

Moscow’s Admission that Russia has Shortage of Diesel Fuel Recalls Classic Soviet Anecdote about Saudi Arabia and Sand

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Sept. 19 – Yevgeny Arkusha, head of the Russian Fuel Union, says that Russia faces a shortage of diesel fuel this winter, a remarkable situation given the Kremlin’s constant claim that the country is an energy superpower but and that has led some Russians to recall an anecdote from Soviet times.

            Then, it was said, that if communism triumphed in Saudi Arabia, within a few years, Riyadh would be importing sand. Now, with the triumph of Vladimir Putin, the same thing can be said about petroleum products, a truly unexpected outcome and a damning judgment about his regime.

            That is just one of the anecdotes Moscow journalist Tatyana Pushkaryova offers in her latest collection ( Among the best of the rest are the following:

·       Wagner head Yevgeny Prigozhin’s claim that anyone who opposes criminals being used to fight Ukraine should be prepared to send their children to the front has led many to conclude that for the foreseeable future, Russians can expect to be used as cannon fodder and nothing else.

·       The Kremlin has prohibited so many things that the line between what is permitted and what is not has been blurred to the point that anyone can be arrested for anything.

·       Putin’s claim that he is committed to peace and that Ukraine is the aggressor resembles the argument of a man who breaks into his neighbor’s house and beats his neighbor’s wife – and then complains that she is to blame because she cries too much.

·       Heavy drinking among Putin’s top aides is entirely rational. It helps them keep doing what he wants them to do or not to notice so much if they are pushed out of a window.

·       When Peskov refuses to answer questions about the Kremlin’s possible use of nuclear weapons, it’s obvious he doesn’t know what his boss is thinking. But it is also possible that his boss, Vladimir Putin, doesn’t know either.

·       Alla Pugacheva’s request to be listed as a foreign agent because she loves Russia and doesn’t want it to be engaged in a war where its sons are lost and it has become an international outcast shows that she doesn’t understand that real Russian patriots are only those who favor war and that those who oppose war aren’t real Russian patriots at all.

·       Russians are now noticing that the loudest calls for belt tightening come from those who have never had to do that.


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