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By John Helmer, Moscow It’s been 412 years since the last foreign-arranged regime change that worked at the Kremlin — if briefly, and if you don’t count Boris Yeltsin and Bill Clinton. . False Dmitry I (lead picture) was, to start with, the stooge of the Polish king and the Pope. Dmitry – aka Yury […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Alexei Mordashov (lead image, top left), the mining and metals oligarch, promised President Vladimir Putin (centre) that in future he would stick to investing in Russia. “We did a great deal of work abroad,” he told  the President, “but came to the conclusion that our future lies primarily in Russia, in […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow President Vladimir Putin hosted his annual supper for the largest holders of capital in Russia on Monday evening. Compared to his table in December 2015, he added 15 extra seats, and for the first time men of little capital have been invited. Representatives of small business and even one Moscow house […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo, which was reported last week as the principal lender to Rosneft’s €11 billion share sale, has announced it has played an advisory role, not a lending role, and it is still in the “assessment phase” of the transaction — without a commitment to lend money. On […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow The old Russian expression from sword-fighting days was “Scars adorn the man” (ШРАМЫ УКРАШАЮТ МУЖЧИНУ – lead image, top). But in the Russian pun (А ШМАРЫ УКРОЩАЮТ — lead image, bottom), do prostitutes “tame” the man? Appearances can be deceiving but not us. Website attacks have intensified since the report last […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Captain Bear to bear artillerymen: “If they know enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, let them eat curds and honey. I told you, curds with a ‘c’. Now look what you’ve dropped on them.” Sanitary notice for readers: if there’s a problem reading the latest news-breaking stories at […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow As famous hoaxers go, Igor Sechin (lead image, centre), the chief executive of Rosneft, Russia’s largest oil company, is at least as clever as Clever Hans (right), a German horse of the late 19th century. Hans was apparently good at arithmetic. If his owner asked him to multiply three by four, […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Russian champagne is like fake news in the Washington Post; and Gresham’s Law on counterfeit money.  The supply of fake champagne, including fake bubbles, is now driving the genuine stuff out of the market. A study, released in Moscow last week by the new state agency, Russian Quality System (Roskachestvo), reveals […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Amazon.com Incorporated makes annual sales of $107 billion, growing at a rate of 30% so far this year. The market capitalization of its shares is currently $366 billion, increasing by 14%. Imagine what would happen to both if the control shareholder and chief executive of the company, Jeffrey Bezos (lead image),  […]

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By John Helmer, Moscow Oleg Deripaska, control shareholder of Rusal, the Russian state aluminium monopoly, is the leading investor of Russian funds in offshore businesses which have failed. He is also Russia’s largest corporate debtor.  Noone else in the circle of President Vladimir Putin has performed so improvidently and unpatriotically. When the costs are counted […]