2009 is the “Year of Youth” in that mega-large hip-hop kingdom known as the Russian Federation. And what is more on the mind of today’s ultra-cool Russian youthsters than tolerance? The Year’s official website explains “what up” to the perplexed:
Outsiders come to study in Russian institutions of higher learning, although they cannot speak Russian clearly. Having arrived in our country as guests, they consider themselves the hosts. And in those places where they are visibly fewer they simply take our jobs. Ethnic conflicts arise. But we won’t solve these problems by grabbing a baseball bat. We beat them today in Moscow, and tomorrow they drive us out of Kazan, from the Caucasus, from the southern regions of our country. And the day after tomorrow we will be living in a country in which only [ethnic] Russians have remained, that is, in Russian within the bounds of the East European Plain—without oil, gas, territories, history. We have to solve this problem constructively!
The Year of Youth is brought to you by the State Youth Affairs Committee, which is chaired by Vasily Yakimenko, the Sturmbannführer who previously hatched the Nashi movement. We think it’s going to be a winner.
Meanwhile, the mighty Russian state continues its titanic struggle against the bad eggs amongst the youth population. As Rabkor.Ru reports, a February 20 concert by the American group Strike Anywhere, organized by anti-fascist activists at Moscow club Plan B, became something of a bummer when the cops surrounded the place and began shaking down the estimated crowd of five hundred misguided music lovers.
But hey, no problem! After a similar recent raid at the Arctica Club in Petersburg, the city’s human rights ombudsman, United Russian Igor Mikhailov, told a gathering of stunned journalists that “police have the right to check people’s IDs, search and detain them, and take their photographs and fingerprints.” In order to make clear his total contempt for the rights he is supposed to uphold, he added: “We all watch with pleasure when [the police] check the IDs of migrant workers.”