Mindblown: a blog about philosophy.

  • Russia’s AvtoVaz Tops Moscow Car Sales in Decade-First

    Russia’s AvtoVaz Tops Moscow Car Sales in Decade-First

    Russia’s largest carmaker AvtoVaz regained its top sales spot in the Russian capital last month for the first time in more than a decade, according to market researcher Autostat. The car market in Russia has been cleared of most competition after Western and Asian automakers suspended operations after the invasion of Ukraine or faced supply shortages…

  • Monthly Laptop Sales in Russia Drop 22% – Kommersant

    Monthly Laptop Sales in Russia Drop 22% – Kommersant

    Russia saw a 22% fall in laptop sales in July compared to the same month last year, Kommersant newspaper reported Thursday, amid the exit of Western brands over the war in Ukraine and an economic slowdown.  A total of 222,000 laptops valued at 13.1 billion rubles ($217 million) were sold in Russia in July, Kommersant…

  • Prominent Human Rights Activist Assaulted in Russia

    Prominent Human Rights Activist Assaulted in Russia

    A prominent Russian human rights activist and member of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s human rights council has been hospitalized after an attacker attempted to stab him in the throat with broken glass.  “Igor Kalyapin was attacked by an unknown assailant in the Nizhny Novgorod region on Wednesday night,” the presidential human rights council said in a…

  • Ukraine’s Zelensky Vows Fight ‘Until the End’ on 6-month War Anniversary

    Ukraine’s Zelensky Vows Fight ‘Until the End’ on 6-month War Anniversary

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was in Kyiv on Wednesday, hailing Ukraine’s six-month long resistance to the Russian invasion as his counterpart President Volodymyr Zelensky vowed the fight would continue “until the end”. Wednesday marked half a year since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the large-scale invasion of Ukraine, as well as the day the…

  • Putin Orders $167 Handout to Parents in Occupied Ukraine

    Putin Orders $167 Handout to Parents in Occupied Ukraine

    Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered one-off support payments to be made to the parents of schoolchildren in parts of Ukraine occupied by Russia, according to an order posted Wednesday on the Kremlin website.  Parents of children aged between 6 and 18 years old in Russia-controlled areas of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia, Kharkiv and Kherson regions will, according…

  • Six months in, 16,500 Detained in Russia For War Opposition – Rights Group

    Six months in, 16,500 Detained in Russia For War Opposition – Rights Group

    Almost 16,500 people have been detained across Russia for protesting the war in the 6 months since the invasion of Ukraine, according to data published Wednesday by an independent human rights group. The overwhelming majority of detentions came in the first month of the fighting before Russian lawmakers passed legislation criminalizing virtually any speech or…

  • Russia-Installed Official in Ukraine Killed in Car Bombing

    Russia-Installed Official in Ukraine Killed in Car Bombing

    A Russian-appointed official in southeastern Ukraine’s occupied region of Zaporizhzhia was killed in a car bomb attack, a member of the Moscow-backed regional administration said Wednesday. The assassination of Ivan Sushko, who headed the town of Mykhailivka, is the latest of several attacks against pro-Russian officials in the occupied regions of Zaporizhzhia and Kherson in…

  • In Photos: Ukraine After 6 Months of War

    In Photos: Ukraine After 6 Months of War

    Six months after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian troops into neighboring Ukraine, the bloody war shows no sign of ending soon. Thousands of Ukrainian civilians have been killed in the invasion, according to the UN’s human rights office. Ukrainians who made the choice not to flee the country have faced challenges from water and…

  • Russia, Ukraine Spar at UN Over Nuclear Plant Dangers

    Russia, Ukraine Spar at UN Over Nuclear Plant Dangers

    Russia and Ukraine traded accusations Tuesday over who was endangering the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, as the United Nations urged both sides to insulate the Ukrainian facility from the ongoing war. Russia called the meeting at the United Nations Security Council to discuss the dangers that close shelling and a military presence posed to the power…

  • Russian Opposition Figure Roizman Detained for Criticizing Ukraine Invasion

    Russian Opposition Figure Roizman Detained for Criticizing Ukraine Invasion

    Yevgeny Roizman, a former opposition mayor of one of Russia’s largest cities, was detained Wednesday on criminal charges related to his public criticism of the invasion of Ukraine, media outlets reported. Ex-Yekaterinburg mayor Roizman said he was being charged under legislation that forbids the “discreditation” of the Russian Armed Forces. If found guilty, he faces…

  • Kyiv Accuses Moscow of Illegal Adoptions of Ukrainian Children

    Kyiv Accuses Moscow of Illegal Adoptions of Ukrainian Children

    Kyiv accused Moscow on Tuesday of having organized illegal mass adoptions of Ukrainian children after transferring them from occupied territories to Russia. Since the beginning of the war, Kyiv has been accusing Moscow of “deporting” Ukrainians, saying Ukrainians from occupied territories have been forced to go to Russia rather than other regions of Ukraine. “The…

  • Russian Tourists’ Luxury Cars Fill Up Helsinki Airport

    Russian Tourists’ Luxury Cars Fill Up Helsinki Airport

    Porsches, Bentleys and other luxury cars with Russian license plates are filling up the parking garage at Helsinki’s airport as Finland becomes an important transit country for Russian tourists flying to Europe. The European Union shut its airspace to Russian planes after Moscow invaded Ukraine, forcing anyone who wants to travel to Europe to drive…

  • ‘She Died for Russia’: Hundreds Mourn Pro-Kremlin Ideologue’s Slain Daughter

    ‘She Died for Russia’: Hundreds Mourn Pro-Kremlin Ideologue’s Slain Daughter

    Hundreds of mourners gathered Tuesday for the Moscow funeral of Daria Dugina, the adult daughter of a prominent nationalist philosopher, after she was killed in a car bombing that Moscow blames on Kyiv. Her father Alexander Dugin — a vocal supporter of the Kremlin’s military campaign in Ukraine — is thought to have been the…

  • Yandex Reaches ‘Binding’ Deal to Divest News Service, Homepage to VK

    Yandex Reaches ‘Binding’ Deal to Divest News Service, Homepage to VK

    Russian tech giant Yandex said Tuesday it has reached a “binding” deal to sell its news platform and homepage to rival VK as war-related sanctions fuel uncertainty over the Russian tech industry’s future. VK said it exited its joint venture with top lender Sberbank to pave the way for the deal with Yandex, once considered…

  • Gibraltar to Auction First Russian Oligarch Superyacht Seized Over Ukraine Invasion – Reports

    Gibraltar to Auction First Russian Oligarch Superyacht Seized Over Ukraine Invasion – Reports

    British-governed Gibraltar will on Tuesday auction off the first superyacht to be seized from a sanctioned Russian businessman over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, media outlets have reported. Billionaire Dmitry Pumpyansky’s 72.5-meter vessel the Axioma is valued at around $74 million, though it is expected to sell below that price, the BBC reported Sunday.  Pumpyansky’s Malta-flagged superyacht…

  • Region Outside Moscow Declares Wildfire State of Emergency

    Region Outside Moscow Declares Wildfire State of Emergency

    Ryazan, a Russian region to the east of Moscow, announced a state of emergency Monday after a spate of forest fires laid waste to more than 8,000 hectares (20,000 acres) of land. Interim Governor Pavel Malkov said on Telegram the measure would facilitate mobilization of resources “to protect inhabitants and territory.” Malkov added that aerial…

  • IMAX Bans Russian Film Screenings Within Russia, Chain Owner Says

    IMAX Bans Russian Film Screenings Within Russia, Chain Owner Says

    IMAX has banned Russian cinemas from screening Russian movies within Russia after leaving the country over its invasion of Ukraine, the head of a major cinema chain said Tuesday. IMAX Corporation, a Canadian company that provides proprietary high-resolution technology for a large-format movie experience, left Russia on June 1 after 19 years on the market,…

  • Dozens of Moscow Metro Passengers Detained on Russia Flag Day

    Dozens of Moscow Metro Passengers Detained on Russia Flag Day

    Moscow police detained dozens of metro passengers Monday in what appeared to be a raid to prevent mass actions on Russia’s National Flag Day, an independent watchdog reported. The detentions come at a time when anti-war activism has been effectively outlawed under laws passed shortly after Moscow sent troops into neighboring Ukraine. OVD-Info, a police-monitoring…

  • RT Chief Suggests Russian Involvement in Skripal Poisonings

    RT Chief Suggests Russian Involvement in Skripal Poisonings

    The editor-in-chief of the Kremlin-backed RT network on Monday appeared to suggest Russia’s involvement in the 2018 poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal in Britain — a crime Moscow has repeatedly denied. Western countries hit Russia with sanctions and expelled dozens of diplomats following the near-fatal poisonings of Skripal, a former Russian intelligence officer who…

  • ‘A Signal to All of Us’: Moscow Blames Kyiv for Killing of Ideologue’s Daughter

    ‘A Signal to All of Us’: Moscow Blames Kyiv for Killing of Ideologue’s Daughter

    Russia said Monday that Ukraine was responsible for carrying out a car bombing that killed Daria Dugina, the adult daughter of nationalist ideologue and Ukraine war supporter Alexander Dugin, as experts said the assassination would likely spook Kremlin loyalists.  Dugina, 29, died Saturday evening when a car bomb exploded in the Toyota Land Cruiser she…

  • In Photos: Russia Celebrates Flag Day Amid Ukraine War

    In Photos: Russia Celebrates Flag Day Amid Ukraine War

    Russia on Monday marked Flag Day, its annual holiday celebrating the country’s tricolor flag that was restored following the Soviet collapse in 1991. Russia has celebrated Flag Day every year since 1994, when then-President Boris Yeltsin created the holiday. This year’s events were overshadowed by the country’s nearly six-month war against Ukraine. Displaying the tricolor…

  • China’s Energy Imports From Russia Spike to $35B – Bloomberg

    China’s Energy Imports From Russia Spike to $35B – Bloomberg

    China continues to boost Russia’s war chest with surging purchases of energy resources as other countries shun Russian goods over its invasion of Ukraine, Bloomberg reported Monday. Between March and July, China spent $35 billion on Russian oil, gas and coal compared with $20 billion the same time last year, Bloomberg said, citing the latest Chinese…

  • Rodman Planning Russia Trip for Jailed Griner – Report

    Rodman Planning Russia Trip for Jailed Griner – Report

    Eccentric former NBA star Dennis Rodman is planning a trip to Russia in an effort to seek the release of imprisoned WNBA player Brittney Griner, NBC News reported on Sunday. The network quoted Rodman as saying that he was hoping to fly to Russia this week in an attempt to help basketball superstar Griner, who was sentenced to nine…

  • Putin Hails ‘Military Glory, Traditional Values’ on Russia Flag Day

    Putin Hails ‘Military Glory, Traditional Values’ on Russia Flag Day

    The Russian flag inspires Russians to “military glory” and represents their adherence to “traditional values,” President Vladimir Putin said in an address marking National Flag Day on Monday. Nearly six months after launching a full-scale invasion of neighboring Ukraine that has pushed Russia into historic political and economic isolation, Putin vowed that Moscow would continue charting…

  • 15 Dead in Russia Crash Between Minibus, Lorries

    15 Dead in Russia Crash Between Minibus, Lorries

    Fifteen people were killed Sunday when a minibus collided with two trucks in Russia’s southern Ulyanovsk region, news agencies reported.  According to witnesses quoted by news agencies, a truck veered off the road when it collided with a minibus traveling in the opposite direction near the village of Nikolayevka.  At the time of the accident,…

  • 16 Dead in Russia Crash Between Minibus, Lorries

    16 Dead in Russia Crash Between Minibus, Lorries

    Sixteen people were killed Sunday when a minibus collided with two trucks in Russia’s southern Ulyanovsk region, news agencies reported quoting emergency services. According to witnesses quoted by news agencies, a truck veered off the road when it collided with a minibus traveling in the opposite direction near the village of Nikolayevka.  At the time…

  • ‘Stalin’s Architect: Power and Survival in Moscow’

    ‘Stalin’s Architect: Power and Survival in Moscow’

    Anyone who has strolled along the banks of the Moscow River in the center of Russia’s capital will likely be familiar with the stolid and rather intimidating Soviet edifice sitting on the western tip of Bolotny island across a stretch of river from the Kremlin. This is the House on the Embankment — Dom na Naberezhnoi…

  • Car Bomb Kills Daughter of Kremlin Hardline Ideologue

    Car Bomb Kills Daughter of Kremlin Hardline Ideologue

    The daughter of Alexader Dugin, a hardline Russian ideologue close to President Vladimir Putin, has been killed in a car bombing on Moscow’s outskirts, authorities said on Sunday. According to family members quoted by Russian media, Dugin — a vocal supporter of Kremlin’s offensive in Ukraine — was the likely target of the blast as…

  • Russians, Ukrainian Arrested Trying to Enter Albanian Army Plant

    Russians, Ukrainian Arrested Trying to Enter Albanian Army Plant

    Two Albanian soldiers were injured while trying to stop two Russians and a Ukrainian national from entering a military plant, the country’s defense ministry said late Saturday evening. One of the suspects allegedly attacked the guards while trying to take photographs of the Gramsh factory in central Albania, which is used for dismantling derelict weapons,…

  • Russian Revolutionary Rassolnik

    Russian Revolutionary Rassolnik

    Today in Russian restaurant menus you might come across “Leningrad style” preceding the word rassolnik. But this St. Petersburg soup is just the Soviet version of a Moscow dish. It was created after the 1917 Revolution and reflected food shortages. It was made with pickled cucumbers, potatoes and pearl barley. What’s to be proud of?…

  • Putin Allows Inspectors to Visit Russia-Held Nuclear Plant via Ukraine

    Putin Allows Inspectors to Visit Russia-Held Nuclear Plant via Ukraine

    Russian President Vladimir Putin has agreed that a team of independent inspectors can travel to the Moscow-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant via Ukraine, the French presidency said on Friday. The apparent resolution of a dispute over whether inspectors travel to the plant via Ukraine or Russia came as a senior U.S. defense official said Ukraine’s forces…

  • ‘Maintenance’ to Halt Nord Stream Gas for 3 Days – Gazprom

    ‘Maintenance’ to Halt Nord Stream Gas for 3 Days – Gazprom

    Russian gas deliveries to Europe through the Nord Stream pipeline will cease from Aug. 31 to Sept. 2 for “maintenance,” Russian energy giant Gazprom said Friday, raising the prospect of energy shortages in Europe. “It is necessary to carry out maintenance every 1,000 hours” of operation, Gazprom said in a statement. “On Aug. 31, 2022,…

  • Annoying Russian Questions

    Annoying Russian Questions

    Как дела?: How’s it going? Years ago whenever I would ask an acquaintance “Как дела?” (How are things?), he’d answer: “В Кремле дела, у нас делишки”. Since дела can mean matters, affairs, or work and делишки can mean minor tasks or errands, I understood it as a joke that meant something like “The Kremlin is…

  • Countries Dismantle Soviet-Era Monuments as Russia’s Ukraine Invasion Fuels Tensions

    Countries Dismantle Soviet-Era Monuments as Russia’s Ukraine Invasion Fuels Tensions

    Traces of the Soviet past are disappearing from countries in eastern Europe as part of their wider efforts to distance themselves from Russia following its invasion of Ukraine. Countries that had been within Moscow’s orbit during the Soviet period — particularly Poland and the Baltic states — have moved to remove Soviet-era monuments from their…

  • Russia to Build NW’s ‘Largest’ Military-Patriotic Youth Education Center

    Russia to Build NW’s ‘Largest’ Military-Patriotic Youth Education Center

    Russian authorities are building the “largest” military-patriotic youth education center in the country’s northwest amid a wider militarization of young Russians that has accelerated since Russia invaded Ukraine, pro-Kremlin media has reported. The Avangard teaching center in the Vologda region is expected to hold its first training camp in 2023, with 5,000 children and teens expected…

  • Pro-Kremlin Rapper Unveils Starbucks’ Russian Successor

    Pro-Kremlin Rapper Unveils Starbucks’ Russian Successor

    The rebranded Russian successor of the Starbucks coffee shop chain has opened with a localized logo, the latest rebranding of a Western franchise that had left the country over its invasion of Ukraine. Starbucks, which employed 2,000 people across its 130 stores in Russia, suspended work and deliveries into Russia on March 10. The Seattle-based…

  • Putin to Attend G20 Summit, Indonesian President Says

    Putin to Attend G20 Summit, Indonesian President Says

    Russian President Vladimir Putin plans to attend the Group of 20 summit in Bali this November, Indonesian President Joko Widodo confirmed for the first time Thursday. “[Chinese leader] Xi Jinping will come. President Putin has also told me he will come,” Widodo told Bloomberg following phone talks with the Russian leader. The Kremlin said earlier…

  • Erdogan Warns of ‘Another Chernobyl’ After Talks in Ukraine

    Erdogan Warns of ‘Another Chernobyl’ After Talks in Ukraine

    Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned Thursday of a nuclear disaster in Ukraine during his first face-to-face talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky since Russia’s invasion began, echoing pleas from the UN’s chief. A flare-up in fighting around Europe’s largest nuclear facility in Russian-controlled southern Ukraine has sparked urgent warnings from world leaders, and UN chief Antonio…

  • Russian Munitions Depot Ablaze Near Ukraine Border

    Russian Munitions Depot Ablaze Near Ukraine Border

    Two Russian villages were evacuated on Thursday after a fire broke out at an ammunition depot near the border with Ukraine, local authorities said.  The blaze comes days after explosions at a military base and munitions depot in Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula annexed by Moscow, which Russia called an act of “sabotage” by Kyiv.  “An ammunition depot…

  • Ukrainian Southern Counteroffensive ‘Unlikely’ as Russia Bolsters Forces

    Ukrainian Southern Counteroffensive ‘Unlikely’ as Russia Bolsters Forces

    A significant Ukrainian offensive to recapture Russian-occupied territories in its southern regions is seen as increasingly unlikely by experts as Moscow moves reinforcements to the area and Kyiv re-focuses on targeting Russian military capacity in the rear.   Ukrainian officials have repeatedly threatened an imminent attempt to recapture the city of Kherson, which was seized by…

  • Zelensky Hails Turkish Leader’s Visit as Russian Strikes Batter Kharkiv

    Zelensky Hails Turkish Leader’s Visit as Russian Strikes Batter Kharkiv

    Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday hailed a visit to his war-ravaged country from Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan as Russian strikes battered the eastern region of Kharkiv, leaving several dead and dozens injured. In a separate meeting with UN chief Antonio Guterres, Zelensky called on the UN to ensure security at the Zaporizhzhia power…

  • Russia Deploys Hypersonic Missiles to Kaliningrad

    Russia Deploys Hypersonic Missiles to Kaliningrad

    Russia on Thursday relocated three warplanes equipped with hypersonic missiles to its exclave of Kaliningrad on the coast of the Baltic Sea.  Wedged between EU and NATO members Lithuania and Poland that have firmly backed Ukraine in the conflict with Moscow, the heavily militarized region of Kaliningrad does not share a land border with Russia. …

  • Wildfire Smog Blankets Moscow Amid Heatwave

    Wildfire Smog Blankets Moscow Amid Heatwave

    Moscow has been blanketed by wildfire smog coming from a nearby region fueled by a summer heat wave, Interfax reported. Authorities in the Russian capital advised residents on Thursday to wear face masks to protect themselves from the smog. The Federal Forestry Agency (Rosleskhoz) blamed authorities in the Ryazan region, where the wildfires are currently burning,…

  • European Military Aid Commitments to Ukraine ‘Dry Up’ After 5 Months of War – Research

    European Military Aid Commitments to Ukraine ‘Dry Up’ After 5 Months of War – Research

    Major European governments promised no new military aid to Ukraine in July, the first month this has happened since Russia invaded its pro-Western neighbor, according to research published Thursday. Ukraine, which relies heavily on Europe’s military and economic aid, received only around 1.5 billion euros ($1.5 billion) in new pledges of support in July, bringing the total…

  • U.S. Seeking to Brand Russia a ‘Blood Diamonds’ Exporter

    U.S. Seeking to Brand Russia a ‘Blood Diamonds’ Exporter

    The United States and its Western allies are seeking to label Russian diamonds “conflict diamonds” over the world’s largest supplier’s nearly six-month invasion of Ukraine. Russia produces about one-third of the world’s diamonds. The U.S., the largest importer of Russian diamonds, estimates that Russia exported more than $4.5 billion worth of diamonds in 2021. “Proceeds…

  • Russian Exports to EU Up Amid Higher Oil Prices

    Russian Exports to EU Up Amid Higher Oil Prices

    The European Union’s imports of Russian goods have grown in monetary terms despite declining in volume this year due to higher prices for commodities including oil. Critics have decried continued EU imports of Russian fossil fuels since Moscow invaded Ukraine in February, accusing the bloc of funding the Kremlin’s offensive. EU imports from Russia rose by…

  • Russian Spacewalk Cut Short Due to Issue With Suit

    Russian Spacewalk Cut Short Due to Issue With Suit

    A spacewalk by two Russians on Wednesday was ended abruptly due to a problem with the battery in cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev’s suit, though at no point was he in any danger, the U.S. and Russian space agencies said.  “Oleg, you must return to the airlock as soon as possible,” the Earth-based Russian mission controllers ordered,…

  • Russia Appoints New Black Sea Fleet Commander — State Media

    Russia Appoints New Black Sea Fleet Commander — State Media

    A new commander has been appointed to the Russian Black Sea Fleet, state news agency RIA Novosti reported Wednesday citing military sources. If confirmed, the removal of Igor Osipov and the elevation of Viktor Sokolov would be one of the most major Russian military reshuffles since the invasion of Ukraine began in late February.  The…

  • Half of Russia’s Air Traffic Control Staff Furloughed or Fired – Vedomosti

    Half of Russia’s Air Traffic Control Staff Furloughed or Fired – Vedomosti

    Up to half of Russia’s country’s air traffic control staff are currently on temporary leave or have been dismissed as the country’s aviation industry contracts amid the war in Ukraine and international sanctions, Vedomosti newspaper reported Wednesday.  The State Air Traffic Management Corporation has laid off 2,000 employees including 600 air traffic controllers since the…

  • In Photos: Russia Shows Off Military Tech in Ukraine War’s Shadow

    In Photos: Russia Shows Off Military Tech in Ukraine War’s Shadow

    Russia opened its ARMY-2022 international military exhibition at a military park outside Moscow this week, aiming to showcase its defense prowess to foreign arms buyers. The annual expo comes nearly six months since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has been beset by a number of setbacks. Despite the lagging successes in Ukraine,…

  • Estonia Turns Away Ukrainians Fleeing From Russia, Volunteers Say

    Estonia Turns Away Ukrainians Fleeing From Russia, Volunteers Say

    Estonia has barred entry to a group of Ukrainians entering from Russia who apparently fled the destroyed port city of Mariupol, according to volunteers who help refugees escape war-torn Ukraine.  “Been in Russia too long,” volunteer Svetlana Vodolazskaya quoted Estonian border guards as saying to a Ukrainian family that was refused entry to the Baltic…

  • Smartphone Shipments to Russia Drop 38% Amid Company Pullouts

    Smartphone Shipments to Russia Drop 38% Amid Company Pullouts

    Russia saw a 38% fall in smartphone imports in the first half of this year amid the exit of major brands over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Kommersant business daily reported Wednesday citing research by GS Group.  The drop was particularly pronounced for cheaper smartphones with a 56% fall in shipments for devices worth under…

  • Navalny Urges Systematic Sanctions Against Russian Oligarchs

    Navalny Urges Systematic Sanctions Against Russian Oligarchs

    Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny on Tuesday called for systematic punitive measures against Russian oligarchs supporting Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and his military operation in Ukraine. In a lengthy social media post, he said that Western sanctions — by the United States, European Union or the United Kingdom — have only targeted 46 of the…

  • Russians Scramble for Visas as EU Mulls Travel Restrictions

    Russians Scramble for Visas as EU Mulls Travel Restrictions

    Russians are racing to try and obtain European visas as some countries impose travel restrictions and fears grow that the European Union could ban Russian tourists from the bloc in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.  The number of applications for Schengen visas — which give access to most EU countries — submitted by Russians…

  • Russian RPG-Armed Robot Dog Revealed to Be Chinese Home Bot

    Russian RPG-Armed Robot Dog Revealed to Be Chinese Home Bot

    A robotic dog equipped with an anti-tank rocket launcher mounted on its back quickly went viral after it was unveiled at Russia’s annual Army-2022 international arms expo Monday.  Just as quickly, investigative outlets found the futuristic device to bear a striking resemblance to a consumer-grade robotic dog available on Chinese online marketplaces.  Dubbed “M-81 complex,”…

  • Estonia Removes Soviet-Era Memorial

    Estonia Removes Soviet-Era Memorial

    Estonia on Tuesday removed a Soviet-era World War II memorial from Narva — a city with a large Russian-speaking minority — accusing Russia of using such monuments to stir up tensions. Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said in a statement that the move was a response to “increasing tensions and confusion around memorials in Narva.” “We…

  • Veteran Russian Rock Star Fined Over Onstage War Criticism

    Veteran Russian Rock Star Fined Over Onstage War Criticism

    A court in Russia’s republic of Bashkortostan on Tuesday fined a veteran rock star over an anti-war speech he made onstage at a concert earlier this year. Yury Shevchuk, the legendary frontman of rock band DDT, spoke out against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine during the band’s concert in his native city of Ufa in May. …

  • Russia Says Blasts at Military Site in Crimea ‘Sabotage’

    Russia Says Blasts at Military Site in Crimea ‘Sabotage’

    Russia said Tuesday that massive explosions at a military facility on the Kremlin-controlled Crimean peninsula in Ukraine that also damaged electrical power infrastructure were the result of “sabotage.” Russian President Vladimir Putin meanwhile said the United States was trying to drag out the conflict, accusing Washington of putting Ukrainians in the firing line and supplying…

  • Russia Says No ‘Military Need’ to Use Nuclear Arms in Ukraine

    Russia Says No ‘Military Need’ to Use Nuclear Arms in Ukraine

    Russia has no military need to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday.  “From a military point of view, there is no need to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine to achieve the set goals,” Shoigu said at an international security conference in Moscow. He slammed media speculation that Russia could potentially…

  • Putin Revives Soviet ‘Mother Heroine’ Title

    Putin Revives Soviet ‘Mother Heroine’ Title

    Russian President Vladimir Putin has revived the Soviet-era award of “Mother Heroine” as  the country grapples with a demographic crisis fueled by plunging birth rates. Putin signed a decree Monday reviving the honorary title “Mother Heroine,” which Soviet leader Josef Stalin first established in 1944 in the wake of massive population losses during World War…

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