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Portal:Russia

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Introduction

Coat of Arms of the Russian Federation.svg

Russia (Russian: Росси́я, tr. Rossiya, IPA: [rɐˈsʲijə]), or the Russian Federation (Russian: Росси́йская Федера́ция, tr. Rossiyskaya Federatsiya, IPA: [rɐˈsʲijskəjə fʲɪdʲɪˈratsɨjə]), is a transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and North Asia. At 17,125,200 square kilometres (6,612,100 sq mi), Russia is by a considerable margin the largest country in the world by area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area, and the ninth most populous, with about 146.79 million people , including Crimea. About 77% of the population live in the western, European part of the country. Russia's capital, Moscow, is one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in Europe; other major cities include Saint Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg and Nizhny Novgorod. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland (both with Kaliningrad Oblast), Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia and North Korea. It shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U.S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. However, Russia recognises two more countries that border it, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both of which are internationally recognized as parts of Georgia.

The East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, the medieval state of Rus arose in the 9th century. In 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium. Rus ultimately disintegrated into a number of smaller states; most of the Rus' lands were overrun by the Mongol invasion and became tributaries of the nomadic Golden Horde in the 13th century. The Grand Duchy of Moscow gradually reunified the surrounding Russian principalities and achieved independence from the Golden Horde. By the 18th century, the nation had greatly expanded through conquest, annexation, and exploration to become the Russian Empire, which was the third largest empire in history, stretching from Poland on the west to Alaska on the east.

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Finnish T-26 at the Parola Tank Museum
The T-26 was a light tank used by the Soviet Union from the 1930s until World War II. It was based on the British Vickers 6-Ton tank and widely considered one of the most successful designs of the 1930s. The T-26 made-up the majority of the Red Army's armour force until late 1941, and saw a long history in the armed forces of various different nations around the world. For almost a decade the T-26 proved to be one of the best tanks in production, with a total of around 12,000 units produced. Success and failure in the Spanish Civil War, where it served as the most widely used tank, ultimately played a major role in influencing the Soviet doctrine of tank warfare in the late 1930s. The T-26 participated in German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 as one of the most numerous tanks in service, contributing to the defense of the Soviet Union. Although the T-26's reputation was marred by its abysmal performance during World War II, it was nevertheless the most important tank of the Spanish Civil War and played major roles during the Winter War and the Battle of Khalkhin Gol in 1939. Between its introduction and its retirement, the T-26 saw a great deal of modernization efforts between 1932 and 1941.

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Ivan Tsarevich
Credit: Viktor Vasnetsov

A painting depicting Ivan Tsarevich, one of the main heroes of folklore of Russia, riding a magic carpet after having captured the Firebird, which he keeps in a cage. This work was Viktor Vasnetsov's first attempt at illustrating Russian folk tales and inaugurated a famous series of paintings on the themes drawn from Russian folklore.

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Monument to Peter the Great

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Yaroslav the Wise

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A Pozharsky cutlet served with mashed potatoes, mushroom sauce and sliced cucumber

A Pozharsky cutlet (Russian: пожарская котлета, pozharskaya kotleta, plural: пожарские котлеты, pozharskie kotlety; also spelled Pojarski) is a breaded ground chicken or veal patty that is typical for Russian cuisine. A distinct feature of this cutlet is adding butter to minced meat which results in an especially juicy and tender consistency. The dish was created in the beginning of the 19th century in Russia and later adopted by French haute cuisine. Read more...

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Anton Chekhov
Anton Chekhov was a Russian physician, short story writer, and playwright. His brief playwriting career produced four classics of the repertoire, while his best short stories are held in high esteem by writers and critics. Chekhov practised as a doctor throughout his literary career: "Medicine is my lawful wife," he once said, "and literature is my mistress". Chekhov renounced the theatre after the disastrous reception of The Seagull in 1896; but the play was revived to acclaim by Constantin Stanislavski's Moscow Art Theatre, which subsequently also produced Uncle Vanya and premiered Chekhov’s last two plays, The Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard. These four works present a special challenge to an acting ensemble, and they also challenge audiences, because in place of conventional action Chekhov offers a "theatre of mood" and a "submerged life in the text". Not everyone appreciated that challenge: Leo Tolstoy reportedly told Chekhov, "You know, I cannot abide Shakespeare, but your plays are even worse". Tolstoy did, however, admire Chekhov's short stories. Chekhov had at first written stories only for the money, but as his artistic ambition grew, he made formal innovations which have influenced the evolution of the modern short story. His originality consists in an early use of the stream of consciousness technique, later exploited by Virginia Woolf and other modernists, combined with a disavowal of the moral finality of traditional story structure.

In the news

20 August 2019 – List of unmanned aerial vehicles
The Russian Ministry of Defence announces that the six-tonne satellite-controlled reconnaissance drone Altius-U has performed its maiden flight. (TASS)
15 August 2019 – Ural Airlines Flight 178
A Ural Airlines Airbus 321 crash lands in a field near Zhukovsky International Airport in Moscow Region, Russia. The event is dubbed the "Miracle over Ramensk", as only 23 passengers had minor injuries, similar to US Airways Flight 1549. Preliminary reports say the aircraft struck a flock of seagulls. (CNN)
13 August 2019 –
According to Interfax, the governor of Arkhangelsk Oblast dismisses as "complete nonsense" the advice by authorities in Severodvinsk to residents of Nyonoksa to evacuate on August 14. This follows the accidental explosion on Thursday of what is speculated to be a nuclear-powered missile. Russian nuclear agency Rosatom says the failed test involved a "nuclear isotope power source" for a liquid-propelled rocket engine. (The Independent) (CBS News)
10 August 2019 –
Five people are confirmed dead and three injured following an accidental rocket explosion on a naval test range in Russia on Thursday. (BBC)
10 August 2019 – 2019 Moscow City Duma election
As many as 50,000 people gathered at ongoing protests in Moscow against the Russian authorities preventing several opposition candidates from running in the election, which turned into a protest against the government in general. It is the biggest such event since the 2011 protests. (ABC News)
6 August 2019 – War in Donbass
Four Ukrainian Ground Forces soldiers are killed in an attack by pro-Russian separatists, near the village of Pavlopil in the war-torn eastern Donetsk Oblast. (RFE/RL)

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Complete equality of rights for all nations; the right of nations to self-determination; the unity of the workers of all nations—such is the national program that Marxism, the experience of the whole world, and the experience of Russia, teach the workers.

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