Wild fires still raged around Moscow in mid-August and the smoke clouds above Red Square hung heavily over the brown marble block that sits below the ominous red walls of the Kremlin. This is the final resting place of the leader of the October revolution, the event that changed the world in 1917. Here lies Vladimir Ilyich Lenin looking as fresh as a daisy.
Lenin died in 1924 but his body has been kept intact ever since and on display in the polished Red Square crypt. The guide books tell us that his brain has been sliced into thousands of pieces and is preserved for scientific purposes. Was it perhaps to decode and bottle the revolutionary spirit? The rest of him is kept from deteriorating by various treatments and is, in effect, mummified.
Stephen Harper's acutely embarrassing behaviour regarding the crisis in Ukraine -- demonizing Vladimir Putin and upping the rhetoric -- must be welcomed in the U.S. which created the crisis in the first place and apparently believes it still has something to gain by isolating Russia. But it is not clear that Harper even realizes -- or cares -- what the larger game is.
And that game may include a Russia-driven shift in global currency allegiance that could devastate the economies of the U.S. and Canada.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced Thursday that Canada has agreed to send six CF-18s to assist NATO in operations in Eastern Europe. Of the decision Harper said, "This is in response to the situation that's developing there, and frankly, more generally to the concern that we have on what really is expansionism and militarism on the part of Russia under the presidency of Mr. Putin."
Do you think Canada should intervene in Eastern Europe?