Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A Question to Getty

My Russian language blog post on the matter.

As you might know, there was an opposition rally in Moscow on March, 1. Well, insofar those anti-Putin forces trying to overthrow our President and backed by some Western powers can be called 'opposition'. But anyhow, there was planned a rally at a certain place in Moscow, agreed with local authorities.

But in the last minutes of February 27, Boris Nemtsov was killed. An ex-politician of Eltsin age and spirit (sapienti sat). Some say he was (one of) opposition leader(s), but he was undoubtedly a political loser, enjoying support of maybe thousands in our multi million people country.

But that's not the point I'd like to discuss now.

The matter is in a part of this rally. The part that went with the banner, depictred in the photo below.

The banner says: "Lustration Is Unavoidable".

Who is carrying it?

Some marginal political quasi-forces called "The Intransigent Column" and "The Black Cohort". If you speak (and read) Russian, you can easily find these in our social network vKontakte.

What are these "forces"?


Here are the logo and flag of the "Intransigent Column". Have you eyes to notice the Wolfsangel?

And here is banner used by the "Black Cohort" to invite people for the rally.

What do we see here?






[place and time of gathering]

Am I to explain anything else?

Just like any other "civilized country" — the USA, the UK and Germany are no exception! — we, the country that defeated German Nazism 70 years ago, unfortunately have Nazis now. Luckily, our Russian Nazis are totally marginal and have no chances to be elected to our Parliament or local representative bodies.

Now that we know who those rallyists were, let us have a closer look on their banner, especially on the image on its right side.

I am not sure you know the image, but I do and did; for more than 20 years my job was connected with photography. It is taken from the once worldwide famous series taken by photographer John Sadovy and first published in the Life on November 12, 1956.

LIFE, Nov. 12, 1956, cover 1.  LIFE, Nov. 12, 1956, spead 34-35.

The images were taken on October 31 or November 1, 1956, during the bloody anti-Soviet uprising in Hungary. Here is what John Sadovy wrote in his publication.
Now the AVH men began to come out. The first to emerge from the building was an officer, alone. 
It was the fasted killing I ever saw. He came out laughing and the next thing I knew he was flat on the ground. It didn’t dawn on me that this guy was shot. He just fell down, I thought. 
Then the rebels brought out a good-looking officer, his face white as chalk. He got five yards, retreated, argued. Then he folded up. It was over with him. 
Two AVH men next. Rifle butts pounding. Punching and kicking. Suddenly a shot.
Six young officers came out, one very good-looking. Their shoulder boards were torn off. Quick argument. We’re not so bad as you think we are, give us a chance, they were saying. I was three feet from that group. Suddenly one began to fold. They must have been real close to his ribs when they fired. They all went down like corn that had been cut. Very gracefully. And when they were on the ground the rebels were still loading lead into them… 
Then my nerves went. Tears started to come down my cheeks. I had spent three years in the war, but nothing I saw then could compare with the horror of this. 
I could see the impact of bullets on a man’s clothes. You could see every bullet. There was not much noise. They were shooting so close that the man’s body acted as a silencer. This went on for 40 minutes. 
They brought out a woman and a man from the building. Her face was white. She looked left and right at the bodies that were spread all over. Suddenly a man came up and walloped her with a rifle butt. Another pulled her hair, kicked her. She half fell down. They kicked her some more. I thought that’s the end of that woman. But in a few minutes she was up, pleading. She said she was not an AVH member. Some of the rebels decided to put her in a bus which was standing nearby, though there were shouts of “No prisoners, no prisoners!” As far as I know she is still alive. 
There was still shooting inside the building. Occasionally a small group would come out. One man got as far as the park, which was a long way, but there he was finished. Two more came, one a high-ranking officer. His bleeding body was hung by his feet from a tree and women came up to spit on him. 
Two or three men, apparently the top officers, were hung like this.
This is the story behind the image Russian Nazis used for their banner. They took the largest one from the Life's spread. Taken in the very moment when rebels' bullets just started their way through bodies of these security officers, but had not killed them yet, and they were watching their inevitable death into eyes (and barrels).

The Hungarian security officer who survived shooting.By the way, there is some uncertain information than the left officer, the one with shoulder boards on, accidentally survived (right photo), and later witnessed in court against the rebels.

What do Russian Nazis mean under 'lustration' I wonder?

Besides, I have just a question to Getty Images agency, which owns rights on the images of John Sadovy. (or, for the matter, to Getty's Russian representative, Fotobank agency):

How expensive was it for Russian Nazis to get this image for their political activity? And in case they stole it, what steps do you plan to take?

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