Monday, January 17, 2005

Just saw today's (Sunday) rally on TV - a lot more people than yesterday, and the ugly red flags have been diluted with the white ones of the Yabloko Party (headed by Grigoriy Yavlinskiy, forever in opposition but out of the Duma since the Dec. 2003 parliamentary election).

In an interview with the BBC Ukrainian Service, Yavlinskiy said this today about the possibility of an "orange revolution" in Russia (via Ukrainska Pravda, in Ukrainian):

The necessary conditions do not exist in Russia today and to make such forecasts for the nearest future is not serious. Pro-democracy politicians and forces do exist in Russia but their influence isn't strong enough to organize a widespread struggle for our rights [...]. However, I can add that in Ukraine, too, there were not many people a year ago who could predict the recent events. That's why, looking at what's happening in Russia today, we may say that though the necessary conditions do not exist, the events may start to develop very fast.

Hopefully, when it all get serious enough, they'll consider changing some of the slogans. Yesterday, I saw one that sent little shivers down my spine: "Putin, give us November 7th back!" It referred to the anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution, a holiday/day off cancelled not long ago. Putin returned the Soviet anthem to them (the tune, not the lyrics), and now they want more...

(The woman was hitting the metal pan with a spoon yesterday, and someone noted wisely: "Everyone needs to bring those, to make more noise!")


I've just received an email from one of my dear Ukrainian friends:

Just read that the poor pensioners pitched orange tents at the intersection of Nevskiy and Sadovaya, shouting, "Nevskiy--vtoroy Kreschatik!" [Nevskiy is the second Khreshchatyk!]

Did you give them the tents?

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