23 February 2009

Reports of a Racist Murder at Belorusskaya Station, Moscow

There are multiple unconfirmed reports of a gruesome racist murder in Moscow. According to livejournal user plucer, on 17 February the following transpired:

…last night, around 9.30 PM, in the central platform of Metro Station Belorusskaya, a group of men with close-cropped hair attacked a dark-haired foreigner.

An organized group of seven persons jumped on the young man of Eastern appearance in broad daylight and killed him.

A group of Moscow artists were witnesses to the crime; among them was A. Shkliaevskii. The artist reported to us: “They beat the boy with hands and feet for about ten minutes. When he fell down, they kicked him some more, and then three athletic-looking guys piled onto him and held down his arms while a fourth strangled him. There were many people, all afraid to interfere. A few women screamed frightfully. The lifeless body was left lying in the middle of the station. The police didn’t interfere, they just stood aside and observed.”
A personal note: When I lived in Moscow in 1997, this station was my stop. I can visualize exactly where this transpired. Sometimes I think I’ll never return to Moscow.

(h/t kg.)

8 comments:

MasterGote said...

The comments mention that it was the brother of an antifa-affiliated girl who was attacked and murdered last year in Irkutsk. Not sure if there's any truth to it.

The police inaction is the most infuriating thing. Why are there so many of them stationed everywhere if they're not prepared to intervene to prevent violence?

Buster said...

MG, I just didn't have the stomach to wade through the comments, but thank you for the info. Will keep my eyes open for updates and/or confirmations of the attack and its details. Now back to my fascinating reading for the day: Ot burzhuaznoi etnologii k sovetskoi etnografii: Istoriia otechestvennoi etnologii pervoi treti XX veka. I feel your envy from across the Atlantic.

rootlesscosmo said...

Oh jaysus, bourgeois ethnology is it? Your patience ought to qualify you for sainthood. I think I'd rather go back on the fucking graveyard shift in the freight yard. (Luckily I don't face this terrible choice.)

Buster said...

Not to worry rootless, there's a happy ending! The title is "From Bourgeois Ethnology to Soviet Ethnography: The History of Russian Ethnology in the First Third of the Twentieth Century."

Oh, wait. The happy ending (the end of the first third) is the leveling of demands of Party fealty on ethnographers, chasing out the old guard, and then eventually sending the new guard to the GULAG...

Tomorrow I navigate through the Bio-Bibliographic Dictionary of Soviet Orientalists, and then--leads all chased around--it's back to the writing grind. Yay!

rootlesscosmo said...

"From Bourgeois Ethnology to Soviet Ethnography: The History of Russian Ethnology in the First Third of the Twentieth Century."

Ah, got it. Actually I just left a comment at kg's blog mentioning a terrific lecture series I atended, spomnsored by the UCB Music Department and conducted by Prof. Izaly Zemtsovsky. It turns out that from about 1890-1930 there was a systematic group study of the Jewish culture(s) in the Pale of Settlement; "An-sky" (Shmuel Rapoport) collected the "Dybbuk" story, and a tune to go with it, as part of this. There was a journal and, starting very early with wax cylinders, some field recording; the whole archive is (I think I remember) in Kiev.

The subway attack is horrible. I'm frankly surprised you'd even think of going back until things are very different, much as I know you're attached to the place. "I'll never go back to Georgia," sang Dizzy Gillespie's big band on Chano Pozo's "Manteca," and who could blame them?

Buster said...

If you think Izaly spins a good yarn, you should meet his wife Alma! They are both brilliant and warm people.

And a reminder that, despite all the violence, there are plenty of folks like them in Moscow--a source of ambivalence until, that is, they all move to the Bay Area, at which point I'll know exactly where to move and wherefore.

daut said...

It's looking like this murder didn't happen. Not satisfied with killing actual people, they seem to have taken to making up fictional victims in order to discredit anyone reporting actual nationalist violence. That "antifa-affiliated girl" killed in Irkutsk never existed. http://pressa.irk.ru/sm/2008/47/015004.html

Buster said...

Thanks for the update, Daut. I have been growing more skeptical of this story, now that it's a week later and still no confirmation from major news outlets or human rights groups.

What I don't get is why plucer posted the story, if it's false. I really hope it wasn't just to drive up his livejournal traffic. Another feared backstory: it was supposed to be some kind of art stunt; I have a couple of fond words I'd direct at him in this case. I believe he may have already written about them...