Staunton, Aug. 21 – Senior Russian officials often reveal a lot if one pays close attention, Russians say. For Example, Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin has just acknowledged what many suspected: being sent to fight in the Russian army in Ukraine is in no way an honor but a form of punishment.
That became clear, they say, when Volodin responded to reports about bouncers at a Magadan restaurant who kept a Russian soldier from eating there. Such people as obvious scoundrels, he suggested, should be sent to fight and possibly die in Ukraine, hardly the image of Russian forces Moscow has been trying to promote.
That is just one of the anecdotes in the latest collection of jokes and anecdotes collected by Moscow journalist Tatyana Pushkaryova (publizist.ru/blogs/107374/43681/-). Among the best of the rest are the following:
· The Russian defense ministry has announced plans to build mobile churches for servicemen. The ministry says that these will be “economy class” churches. Russian wits suggest that these will have to be followed by business class churches based on Range Rovers for officers and first-class churches for the top elite using the Aurus Temple.
· In order to slow the growth of prices in Russia, Rosstat has changed its method of calculating inflation four times.
· Russian army recruiters are now coming to Orthodox churches to find young men. But the Moscow patriarchate has to do more: Patriarch Kirill must soon announce a crusade. Then everyone will join.
· Given how many things have disappeared from Russia as a result of Moscow’s break with the West, many Russians are now worried about what may happen in the future if Moscow breaks with China. Will that mean that the Russian people who no longer have white paper will have to write on birchbark again?
· Dmitry Medvedev got it exactly right that the Baltic countries are the poor men of Europe. After all pay and pensions there are only two to four times higher than in Russia and not the 10 to 25 times more as is the case in other European countries.
· Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu says that many Ukrainians don’t accept Kyiv’s line about Russia. That must mean that they are now dancing with delight when Russian bombs fall on their houses.
· Shoygu insists that Moscow had to intervene in Ukraine because of “the unacceptable security threats” from that country. This fits in well with present-day Russian objectivity which hods that the earth is hollow, the sun is flat and Hitler is hiding out in Antarctica.
· Apparently, the wrong people listened to Aleksandr Dugin when he chanted “kill, kill and kill again” and chose the wrong target, his daughter and not Ukrainians.