Julia Ioffe

Senior Editor

Pussy Riot Arrested in Sochi

Annals of Idiocy

Pussy Riot was arrested in Sochi today. Yes, you read that right.

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The Russians Think I'm a Russophobe? They're Right.

A Response to Myself

This weekend, the American and Russian hockey teams squared off against each other at the Sochi Olympics and, even if, like me, you're not a fan of the sport, it was an undeniably gripping match, one that ended only after a white-knuckle shootout. Thank god it wasn't an elimination round game, though, because there was that moment with five minutes left in the game and the score tied that the Russians seemed to score a goal and an American referee disallowed it.

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Even though yesterday he feared paralysis if he skated...

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Dosvedanie to All That


In an exit interview, our ambassador to Russia on freedom, security, and how badly Putin wanted Obama to visit Sochi

Before he headed to Moscow in January 2012 as Barack Obama’s new ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul was itching to get out of government. He had dreams of moving back to Palo Alto. The weather’s nice, his family missed the place. But Obama had come to rely on McFaul, a longtime Russia scholar and the National Security Council’s point man on the country. So he offered him a posting he couldn’t decline.

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Once again, just as I predicted, Evgeni Plushenko is kicking up scandal at the Olympics. 

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The Sochi Olympics have barely gotten off the ground when the Russians are already talking about the next one. At the opening of the China House in Sochi two days after the opening ceremony, sports minister Vitaly Mutko declared that Russia would throw its support behind China's bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics.

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I've learned long ago that some of the most interesting stuff happens on trains. Right now, I'm on one of the free commuter trains linking downtown Sochi to the Olympic Village and Krasnaya Polyana up in the mountains. Across the very small aisle from me, two Russian women are having a discussion. One is older, one is younger. 

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Why is the Russian winter sports machine in sixth place? Because most money for sports in Russia comes from the government—which spends it on fancy hotels, not athletic training. 

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Poor Johnny Quinn. The American bobsledder came to Sochi to bobsled. Instead he's taking gold in the new sport of Getting Stuck in Small Sochi Spaces.First, it was the bathroom. ...With no phone to call for help, I used my bobsled push training to break out. #SochiJailBreak pic.twitter.com/apZRefgvCO

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In September, Olympic torch ligher Irina Rodnina tweeted a doctored, racist photo of Obama and vocally defended it. Five months later, she's figured out a better explanation.

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