Is Konstantin von Eggert Taking A Leaf From Johann Hari?

In one of his regular columns for mafia state news agency RIA Novosti he wrote (h/t Mercouris):

Valentina, an acquaintance of mine, is a third year Moscow University student. She told me recently: ‘Whenever I or my friends and college mates hear ‘Georgia’, the reaction is nearly universally positive – food, people, culture and now democracy! The Georgians succeeded where our rulers failed”. The Kremlin may well hear more from Saakashvili – and Georgia’s growing fan-base in Russia itself.

But wait! This sounds… remarkably similar to a Facebook conversation with one Valentina Filippenko on Eggert’s wall. (She is a student at the Journalism Faculty of Moscow State University, presumably another democratic journalist in the making). Except that “food, people, culture and now democracy!” or even “nearly universally positive” (≠ “Georgia’s image becoming more and more positive”) don’t figure anywhere in her comment. This is what she actually said, in translation:

You know, I’m noticing in my “youth” circles: The connotative coloring of Georgia is becoming ever more positive – this the Kremlin and United Russia will find hard to deal with.

Now it’s more likely than not, I suppose, that Ms. Filippenko would not disagree with Eggert’s apparent amplification of what she actually said. Still, unless she  further expounded on this topic to Eggert on the telephone, one has to conclude that he is guilty of the same thing that ruined Johann Hari’s career.

PS. In case Eggert deletes this:

Note also another gem, in the third section. One journalist Ramil Gataullin comments, “Saakashvili above all entered history as a killer of Russian peacekeepers.” In reply, Sergey Medvedev, a professor of Economics at the (neoliberal) School of Higher Economics replied, “Russian peacekeepers got lost in the mountains and ended up in the wrong territory…)) Konstantin, excellent commentary.”

Needless to say, it was Medvedev who got most of the Likes on Eggert’s page, not Gataullin.

Little surprises me from these people, but still, even I am taken aback by this degree of loathing for their country. They really do think it excellent that Saakashvili bombarded the barracks of their own soldiers and killed some of them. To them, Kasparov and his ilk meeting Saakashvili in solidarity immediately after the war wasn’t a cause for disenchantment; it was taking a heroic stand against the Kremlin! It’s not like I care about their views that much, they are of course entitled to them, but what’s hilarious is that these liberals genuinely can’t figure out why they are considered revolting by much of the rest of the country.


  1. I think some of the more extreme Russian liberals could fairly be described as traitors

  2. Sounds like a buncha kids in 67′ waving Viet Cong flags and then getting surprised when rednecks want to kick their asses. It was one thing to oppose getting involved or sending young men to die in Vietnam and quite another to root for the other side.

  3. The strangest comment is “I have heard Saakashvili described as a ‘successful Putin’.” What on earth is this supposed to mean? On what planet is Saakashvili more successful than Putin?

  4. Medvedev and Eggert both work for the government. Take their funding away from them now.

    • Such an action would just fuel more articles on the Western press on how Putin doesn’t tolerate dissent. Just let them say whatever they want, very few people in Russia care for these guys anyway.

    • I assume Eggert gets money both from RIA and Kommersant.

      RIA is a state news agency, so I don’t know if it’s the best idea for them to hire Eggert (except insofar as to show it is “balanced”), but Kommersant is a private newspaper and has every right to hire whomever it wants.

      • Im principle I personally would have no problem with RIA Novosti keeping Eggert on. What he writes are opinion pieces. For better or worse there are liberals in Russia and I think a semi official news agency like RIA Novosti is right to let someone air their views.

        The trouble with RIA Novosti is not that it has Eggert as a commentator but that MOST of its commentary and practically ALL its reporting are now liberal. Eggert is not therefore providing “balance”. On the contrary he is simply representative of what has become the excessive liberal bias in RIA Novosti’s commentary and reporting, which is completely inappropriate for a semi official and publicly funded news agency. I do not know for example of a single RIA Novosti commentator at least in its English edition who unequivocally supports Putin and who puts the case for him. Also if one is talking about balance, where are the RIA Novosti commentators who support Just Russia or the KPRF, parties whose support in the last parliamentary elections was many times greater than that of the parties that Eggert presumably supports?

        Contrast this with Voice of Russia, which is also publicly funded and which does provide a reasonable balance of different views.

  5. Artocarpus says:

    >>The strangest comment is “I have heard Saakashvili described as a ‘successful Putin’.
    At least during Putin’s tenure Russia didn’t loose 20% of its territory

  6. I’ve worked quite a lot in Georgia 2001-2006 and was taken aback by a sort of attitude towards Russians that I would never think could exist in former USSR republic. They believe Russians are barbarians and not good for anything intelligent and them being European and so much higher. Exactly this kind of attitude made them believe they can kill Russian solders and suffer no reprimand. As for positive connotations, since Soviet time, among intiligenezia it is a must to adore anything Georgian. It proves that those intelligenzia folks live by the set of myths ignoring reality. That is why they so distressed most of the time – no wonder -reality once and again is disappointing them.

    • If Russians are such barbarians, and not good for anything, why do so many Georgians live in Russia? Surely, if that country is so awful, they should all return home and eat shashlik and guzzle wine.

      Same thing with some Ukrainians, they say that those awful Moskali live the same like them, only problem is that you do not see Moskali searching for work in Ukraine by the millions. 🙂

  7. This is facebook, it is absolutely infested with liberasts, as it is their preferred social-networking site. Therefore it is quite possible for a vile, completely unpatriotic, liberast scum to get the most likes. In the case above it is only 3 though. 😉