The Night of Long Excavator Shovels

First we have breaking news. This morning I awoke to reports that kiosks and small shopping centers all over the city overnight.

While the war on small kiosks in Moscow is actually a few years old, as the reader can see from the pictures, even medium sized, multi-story shopping centers have been slated for demolition. This article, unfortunately only in Russian, has a map marking the 104 establishments that have either been demolished or are being demolished as I write this.

According to the linked articles, owners of the properties were compensated, but I can hardly see how this works towards Putin and Medvedev’s often stated goal to “support small business.”


19 Nov 2015, Putin declares support for small business to be insufficient. 1 Dec 2015, Medvedev leads a conference on the problems of support for small business. 9 February 2016, self-explanatory. Cartoon by Sergey Elkin.

Of course the destruction itself has little to do with Putin or Medvedev, unless of course this is only the first step in an elaborate plan to make amends to Ukraine by visiting on Moscow that same destruction the Kremlin inflicted on east Ukraine. Assuming that’s not the case, the real culprit would of course be Moscow mayor Sergey Sobyanin…OR IS IT?!

I did some in-depth research, and discovered that Sobyanin’s patronymic is “Semyonevich.” So in his surname you already have “ob,” then you take the “m” out of his patronymic and put it before the “a” in his last name and…Suddenly you discover the real perpetrator of this demolition operation!

UPDATE: According to this article by Bershidsky, owners will not be compensated and their leases were legal. We’ll probably be hearing a lot about this in the next few weeks if not months.

6 thoughts on “The Night of Long Excavator Shovels

  1. Pingback: A parable on expat privilege | Russia Without BS

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