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MOSCOW – It is the 300th anniversary of the Grande Chaconne, the dance which Louis XIV, the sun king of France and creator of the splendor of Versailles, regarded as his favorite. Its composer was Marin Marais, the son of a shoemaker in a family of roofers. By the time Marais first came to Louis’s [...]

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Russia’s oil majors are going, going… but nowhere near gone. In February, there were six major companies. In terms of oil revenues, the largest was LUKoil, followed by Yukos, Surgutneftegas, Sibneft, Tyumen Oil Co. (TNK) and Tatneft. Measured according to market capitalization at the time, their order of precedence was a little different. Yukos came [...]

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MOSCOW – When the announcement came last Friday that Roman Abramovich had decided to put a temporary stop, possibly a permanent one, to the merger between his Siberian Oil Company (Sibneft), and Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s Yukos, Abramovich’s lawyer, Andrei De Cort, took ill, and stopped taking calls. He then left the country. Yukos board member and [...]

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One of the benefits the restoration of Christianity has brought Russia is that almost all Russian politicians can say that God is on their side, The Church hasn’t been especially helpful, however, in inculcating the lesson that, for more than a thousand years of European history, the real fight hasn’t been between God and the [...]