At New York Magazine, Russian-born Michael Idov reflects on the few years he returned to Moscow to edit the Russian edition of GQ, beginning in 2011. He was surprised by the culture of cynicism he encountered — a response to constant deceit and crushing autocracy under Vladimir Putin. And he wonders whether a similar lack of trust and sense of defeat are in store for the U.S. under Trump.
Why then does the American public still consider all spies to be demons? Why does the public make no distinction between technical spies like Julius Rosenberg stealing useful knowledge and tactical spies like Kim Philby destroying human lives? Perhaps it is because the American public is misled by the American secrecy system. The secrecy system is a bureaucratic monster that classifies vast quantities of information as secret, making it impossible for the ordinary citizen to see the difference between important and unimportant secrets.
Unfinished hotel rooms, terrorist threats, egregious human rights violations and thrilling athletic feats: Sochi’s got it all. But Russia’s dangerous, government-sanctioned homophobia precedes and extends far beyond this year’s Olympic games. 1. “Closed, Destroyed, Deleted Forever.” (Dmitry Pashinsky, n+1, February 2014) Incredible interview with Lena Klimova, founder of Children 404, a social networking resource for […]
“The idea of poisoning — radioactive or otherwise — is not new to Russian intelligence. According to former Russian intelligence officer Boris Volodarsky, now a historian and one-time associate of Litvinenko, the Russians have a history of substance assassination going back nearly a century. It was Lenin who ordered the establishment of their first laboratory, known simply as the […]
“You can still see Russia’s drinking problem everywhere—in its cities and especially in its rural, less populated provinces. A 2011 report from the World Health Organization estimated that Russians were drinking an average of about 4 gallons of pure alcohol per year—about 70 percent more than their American counterparts. In 2009, the British medical journal […]