As the historic Battle of Stalingrad raged in 1942, Zinaida Yermolyeva, a 43-year-old Soviet microbiologist, was assigned to help the city overcome a cholera outbreak that was proving nearly as fatal to Soviet troops as the German bombardments. After early experiments on herself, Yermolyeva would go on to develop an effective way of treating drinking water that the Red Army was sourcing from the Volga River, as well as an eventual antibiotic against cholera, diphtheria and typhoid. Her efforts proved critical in protecting Soviet soldiers from infectious diseases at that fateful battle and – eventually – defeating the Nazi military juggernaut. Howard Florey, the inventor of penicillin, praised her as the creator of an antibiotic equal to his own.
Today, Russians are more skeptical about healthcare solutions promoted by their government: in a survey conducted in December, only 38 percent said they were willing to take the country’s domestically-made coronavirus vaccine, Sputnik V (named after the first man-made satellite sent into space), despite Russia having the world’s fourth-largest outbreak – over 3.7 million cases. After a much-publicized August rollout of “the world’s first registered COVID vaccine,” the bullhorns of Russian state media lapsed into an awkward silence. The vaccine was available, it was safe (apparently), cases had begun to tick upwards in a second autumn wave, the government was reluctant to shutter businesses in another lockdown, and… there was no news about how to get inoculated.
President Vladimir Putin had announced on TV that mass inoculations would finally be widely available after having given priority to frontline workers. The results had been mixed: a few weeks ago, the developers of Sputnik V claimed that 1.5 million Russians had received a dose of the vaccine. These figures were subject to criticism, and rumors of healthcare workers being pressured into taking the vaccine didn’t help the cause. Since then, reliable data has been hard to find, with the best estimates suggesting that 0.69 doses of the vaccine have been administered per 100 people in Russia, considerably behind Israel (56.28), the United States (9.4) and France (2.25).
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The lamentable state of Russia’s roads and sidewalks has long been fertile ground for memes and jokes. Irkutsk artist Ivan Kravchenko decided to turn the problem into an art project. For over two years he has been patching ruts in city sidewalks with colorful ceramic tiles.
Sputnik V: First Place or Long Shot?
The Russian vaccine seems top-notch, but low public trust and a botched rollout remain formidable barriers to returning to normalcy.
the Valley of the Dead
On the Trail of a Russian Movie Star
Food & Drink
Food & Drink
Misha Smirnov has the day off. There are the traditional eggs for breakfast and the usual darkness out the window.
A People on the Brink
Over the past century, the ancient people known as the Votes has been exiled twice, has seen its language banned, and has faced the threat of having its villages razed. Today, although teetering on the verge of extinction, it holds fast to one of the last rights it enjoys – the right to bear and to say its own name.
Tenders of the Vine
Visiting Russia’s Nascent Wine Region
Restoring the Future
A Small Town Gets a Makeover
Here I stand, on the summit of Anik Mountain, drenched to the bone amid zero visibility, driving rain, and a fierce wind.
Mike, I received the latest issue of Prehistoric Times today. My family teases me that I get such a kick out of the fact that “the dinosaur magazine” has arrived in the mail. Thanks for doing what you do. It is a great distraction from other things that occupy us at the moment. Stay well, Tony Escobedo, Springfield, VA Thanks Tony, Ha, you think YOUR family teases you - I publish the dinosaur magazine! - editor
Model @DEECOBB_ Photography by CHRISSY LITTLEFAIR | @LITTLEFAIRPHOTOGRAPHY_ MUA @ART_BY_LUCYMARIA PR LSA PUBLICATIONS | @LEO.ALDERMAN @LSAPUBLICATIONS
Europe, CIS And Middle East
Update on the ministry in Russia
Russian Capsule Carrying Robot Docks At Space Station
A Russian space capsule carrying a humanoid robot has successfully docked at the International Space Station after a failed attempt last week.
Russian Media Agency Complains Youtube Facilitates Protests
Russia’s media oversight agency said this week that it wanted Google to stop YouTube users from posting information about unsanctioned political protests or the Russian government would feel free to retaliate against the American company.
Brutality. Arrests. But Russian Protests Just Keep Growing
With oil prices falling—and taking living standards with them—the people are finding ways to express their discontent
Controlling biting flies
Biting flies are not only a nuisance, but can also transmit diseases and deliver painful bites, says Dr Mac.
Russia says it will retaliate again if Czech spy row escalates
Czech Republic demands that Russia allow the return of all 20 staff to Moscow by Thursday or face further evictions of its diplomats from Prague; thousands defy Russian ban on pro-Navalny rallies
Kremlin says it fears full-scale fighting in Ukraine
MOSCOW THE Kremlin said on Friday it fears a resumption of full-scale fighting in eastern Ukraine and could take steps to protect Russian civilians there, a stark warning that comes amid a Russian troop build-up along the border.
Putin passes law that may keep him in office until 2036
It Will Allow 68-Yr-Old Russian Prez To Run For 2 More Terms After 2024