Thursday, September 15, 2022

New Iron Curtain Radically Different from Old One, Shalimov Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Aug. 18 – Given restrictions now being imposed on the ability of Russians to travel abroad, ever more people are speaking about the appearance of a new iron curtain; but Russian political analyst Andrey Shalimov says that it is critically important to keep in mind that the new iron curtain is fundamentally different from the old one.

            The old iron curtain was “erected by the communist state from the inside and was almost without holes,” he points out; but the new one, being thrown up by various European countries does not in fact close “tens of thousands of kilometers” of the Russian border, allowing Russians who want to leave to do so (

             As a result, those Russians with money and a desire to go abroad will simply change their routes, heading south and east rather than West, while the overwhelming majority of Russians who lack either money or the desire to go abroad will continue to work quietly at home, Shalimov continues.

            And he points to another major difference as well. In Soviet times, the government wanted to hold its people in, while now, there are peoples and countries which want to keep Russians out. The center of this new desire, he says, is to be found in places like the Baltic countries whose people see foreign travel as a privilege and don’t want to extend it to Russians.

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