Russian Politics, & Personalities

Posts Tagged ‘Igor Yurgens

Yuri Zarakhovich

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has a great article at Jamestown on another problem with Medvedev’s Gazeta article.  That is the intellectual factor.  Look, there were some great innovative ideas in the article.  Ideas that people like Yurgens could get behind.  It’s what they want to hear.  Personally, I like to hear it too, but I happen to be a bit more cynical about these things.

Here is what Yuri has to say:

However, filling such ambitions [as Medvedev’s] requires enlightened, educated, and independently thinking people. The question is where Medvedev expects to find such people, as the intellectual potential of the country inexorably shrinks. Once promoted as the “best-read” country in the world, the Russian population is rapidly losing such skills. In fact, the image of Russia as “the world’s most read nation” has always been a myth, supported by the huge circulation of the works of Marx and Lenin. People read on the subway, but they mostly read whodunits. Now, the reading rate has markedly declined.

Again, the article was all pie in the sky.  In order to really follow through with these ideas for technological innovation, you would have to fundamentally change not only the entire Russian education system, but the whole philosophy of education.  Why do you educate?  To what purpose?  These are things that the regime is just not interested in.

Written by Nina Jobe

October 19, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Dzhakhan Pollyeva

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may be on her way to a different post.  According to The Moscow Times: “Medvedev has rejected speeches written by Dzhakhan Pollyeva, who served in the Kremlin during Putin’s presidency…”

There are a couple of things that concern me about this story.  First, Dzhakhan is rumoured to be close to another member of Medvedev’s staff, Larisa Brychyova.  Larisa is head of the State Legal Directorate, and advises Medvedev on legal matters.  Larisa and Dzhakhan attended law school together, and have remained close ever since.  Will this effect her too?

Second, even if the story is not true, as Alexei Mukhin claims, someone put it out there.  And an attack on the President’s speech-writer (though quite honestly, I am not sure how much writing she does, as I am pretty convinced Natalia Timakova has been writing the blog entries etc.) in the run-up to Medvedev’s State of the Nation speech has got to be calculated.  The question then becomes why?  Because if you are making a list of people with influence in the Kremlin, Dzhakhan would not even be on that list (at least she would not be on mine).

Another note concerning this article: The Institute for Contemporary Development is headed by Igor Yurgens,  I will add a link to their website (in English), and a list of members (many of whom are at least nominally loyal to Medvedev).