Soviet nostalgia in Sevastopol ("La Croix", France)

Soviet nostalgia in Sevastopol ("La Croix", France)

How do people live in the city joined to Russia? Many believe that they simply returned "to their homeland." Ardent patriotism has many hopes.

The first paradox. The waters of the Black Sea shine brightly in the sun. You might think that you are in Nice. Although there are more Russians here. And not the “new Russians,” who hardly liked local restraint. They prefer Yalta, if they are already tired of the Cote d'Azur and in Courchevel.

In Sevastopol Crimeans live like real Russians. On Sunday evenings, many of them gather in public gardens. In the wake of nostalgia, they sing or talk about a great past, love for their newfound homeland. Often you can hear the accordion, from the sounds of which tears come to my eyes ...

World War II everywhere

A photo exhibition mounted on a wooden platform tells about the destruction during the second siege of the city by III Reich in 1941-1942, less than a century after the war with the Turks, the British and the French.

The magnificent monuments found at every step (walls, towers, statues) tell about the Great Patriotic War and glorify the heroism of the soldiers. No suffering and exploits are forgotten. All museums and forts diligently restored.

The two sieges of Sevastopol seem to the residents of the city something immeasurably more important than the current events in Ukraine. They keep the memory of heroes, soldiers and admirals, after whom streets and squares are named. Moreover, back in those days when those who talk about them with such a feeling have not yet come to light. Whoever you may say, it seems that in Sevastopol they still heal the wounds of the Second World War.

From selective memory to patriotism

Such lively patriotism has permeated the current world views. The Great Patriotic War and the huge price that the USSR had to pay in general and the martyred city of Sevastopol in particular, still remain fertile ground for Russian nationalism in the Crimea. Something like Soviet nostalgia, which is firmly embedded in the landscape and minds.

Many are characterized by selective memory of the old days, “when Sevastopol was closed to foreigners. There was confidence in the future, ”explains Svetlana. The 27-year-old girl talks about the memories of her mother, who then worked at an electrical enterprise. In the area of ​​Vladimir Cathedral, which was once a favorite place for smugglers, there is a feeling of relative prosperity. Nearby are the well-guarded buildings of the Black Sea fleet.

"Not Ukraine and not Russia"

“Today the Crimea and Sevastopol are awakening, getting on their feet ... - continues Svetlana. - We are not like the Ukrainians. Our identity is connected with the Black Sea. We eat fish. ” As for the inhabitants, “Sevastopol is a special world”, even if, like the Crimea, which is closely connected with Russia. But he always occupied a special place, was in itself, "not Ukraine and not Russia." The city perfectly remembers the former role of the fortress and does not hide pride in this regard: “Yalta is lazier and more licentious”.

The military past and the present (it can be clearly seen from the sailors and warships) soaked the whole city. Vests are seen everywhere, crickets can be heard ... The Black Sea fleet here is the basis of the foundations. That was Catherine II’s dream in 1783. In the moored floating hospital, everyone is treated. And in the officers' club performances are held.


The gained independence from Ukraine feeds not aesthetically pleasing metaphors.

“Before [that is, before the Ukrainian crisis of 2014, approx. ed.] the city was dark, and now it glitters. ” Like limestone of local quarries (a city was built from it for centuries), it suddenly acquired new properties. After returning under the wing of Russia, a feeling of rebirth reigns in the city.

Formerly dreaming of joining Western Europe, Kiev was stingy with investments in eastern regions. Such passivity gave rise to a sense of abandonment and reasoning about the ineffective leadership in a predominantly Russophile and Russian-speaking city. Similar feelings are shared even by those who moved here from Ukraine. In the “referendum” they preferred Moscow to Kiev. Like most sailors of the Black Sea Fleet 20 years earlier.

Putin's policy

The Kremlin did not spare the energy to achieve such a result. Industrialization programs are accompanied by an influx of finances. A branch of Moscow State University has opened in the port. There is support for cultural life and public parks.

The seeds of such a policy of active support fall on fertile soil: developing the port, Putin flatters the pride of residents who hear the city’s legendary Sevastopol several times a day.

If there are disputes, it usually comes down to simple positions. Some believe that the Russian miracle has already happened. Others are just waiting for him, hoping for the best: they blame the current developmental delays on the consequences of the Western embargo. “We need to stop the war,” they say in the city. “It’s a pity that Americans control the French policy.”

Slavic traditions

The warm climate attracts many Russians to Sevastopol, who travel there for the sun and beaches. Former Soviet border guard Pavel "fell in love with the city at first sight." Like the journalist from Karelia Alexander: because of the northern cold weather, he was able to retire earlier and move to Sevastopol with his wife, a local native.

With all the passion of converts, they work in the cultural center of Sevastopol. Each of them in its own way glorifies the "power of the Russian spirit." Anyway, disappointment quickly appears in their words: “We forget about our traditions, materialism becomes higher than spirituality. We need to keep our roots. Europe is mistaken in refusing to protect the traditional family. ”

For them, Sevastopol and Crimea are “borders of the Slavic world”. A "Black Sea - Russian Sea."

The largest military cemetery outside of France

During a trip to the French cemetery of Sevastopol (we still have to pay for gas), Paul and Alexander show no rancor.

They regret that “the embargo makes it difficult to take care of the graves of 45 from thousands of French soldiers, the largest military cemetery outside of France.” This is despite the fact that the Crimean War of 1853-1856 ended in the defeat of Russia and the Paris Treaty, under which Russia lost its rights to the fleet in the Black Sea.

Hope for the future

Since then, a lot of upheavals have fallen to the lot of Sevastopol: wars, the collapse of the Russian Empire, communism, the end of the bipolar world in which Russia played such an important role. Under Putin, the humiliated country is trying to get back on its feet, still embarrassed, and sometimes rude.

The desire to return to the forefront is driven by many people in Sevastopol. They have high hopes for a new alignment. Only here, the future that arises in their view is not very similar to what the Western leadership dreams of.
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  1. +59
    24 August 2015 18: 09
    The city of Sevastopol is famous for rowing ... there Turks, British, French, Italians, Germans raked.
    1. +5
      24 August 2015 19: 09
      I won’t say anything for Seva, but along the southern coast of Sudak, Koktebel, Feodosiya, the people groaning ... the youth are generally disappointed ..., the reason is the same price, last year I was in shock .., on the waterfront, beer is cheaper than in Russia in the supermarket, and in this they have more in the store than on the mainland in the resort area, and so with all the foodstuffs ...
      when we received our pensions, they were happy, and after not a slight rise in prices they say that they could buy more for a small Ukrainian than for a larger Russian ...
      Well, hold on now, because RUSSIAN! but Vova needs them to organize what kind of thread they should, because it’s hard for ordinary people ...
      1. +14
        24 August 2015 20: 00
        Yes, yes ... And all the same, they dream of participating in the seventh wave of Ukrainian grave!
        Sadness, Svidomo.
      2. +25
        24 August 2015 20: 01
        The blockade of dill food mainly led to a jump in prices. Everything is imported, as on an island. They will build a bridge, cheaper logistics, and there will be more of their own, local, and prices will drop to average Russian. I remember that in Soviet times the Crimea was very expensive, it was unprofitable to rest in the wild, even alone.
      3. +20
        24 August 2015 20: 03
        Quote: severniy
        and after not a slight rise in prices they say that they could buy more for a small Ukrainian than for a larger Russian ...

        The main thing here, COULD! What can you do today for a Ukrainian pension?
        And I put a minus to the article. Here for this:
        "... But he always occupied a special place, he was by himself," not Ukraine and not Russia "...." Sevastopol without family and tribe ??? This is with a hangover ??? The Russians, the Russians built it!

        The founding date of modern Sevastopol is June 3 (14), 1783. On this day, under the leadership of Rear Admiral Thomas Fomich Mekenzi, the first four stone buildings of Sevastopol were laid: the house of the commander of the Sevastopol squadron Thomas Mekkensi (Thomas Fomich), a chapel, a forge in the Admiralty and the pier, later named Grafskaya [24]. The founder of the city was Rear Admiral of Scottish descent Thomas Fomich Mekenzi. But five years earlier, by the decision of Alexander Suvorov, the first earthen fortifications were built on the shores of the Sevastopol Bay and Russian troops were deployed [25]. Initially, the settlement was called Akhtiar, named after the former Crimean Tatar village Ak-Yar (Crimean Tatar white coast, precipice), while Catherine II ordered G. A. Potemkin to build a large fortress in its place on February 10 (21), 1784 call Sevastopol [26]. The city was built with funds received by Potemkin from Novorossiysk lands. Administratively, Sevastopol became part of the Tauride region, formed as part of the Yekaterinoslav governorate.

        PS Those who put the + article. Are you adding to this? "... Under Putin, the humiliated country is trying to get back on its feet, still awkward, and sometimes rude ...."
        1. +1
          24 August 2015 22: 43
          The article is a plus because it is not a reprint of the next masterpiece of the purchased journalist of a little-known publication repeating the first-channel maxims. Here, the author at least VISITED Crimea before writing about him, and, as it seemed to me, he wrote quite openly.
          1. +1
            25 August 2015 22: 53
            Yeah, of course, I visited ... I stopped reading at the passage, where Svetlana says that we eat fish. What kind of fish? The moron journalist has a stereotype, since they live near the sea, it means the city of fishermen.
            I am sure that Svetlana was also invented, and if this ghoul was with us, I didn’t understand and did not see anything, but upon arrival I wrote this x ... from stamps and Wikipedia.
        2. 0
          25 August 2015 06: 57
          There is a rating for the article, but it is fairly objective. And there are a few phrases for which you are neglecting, thereby distorting the general perception. Isn't this the case when a child was splashed out with water?
          1. 0
            26 August 2015 14: 18
            Quote: oracul
            And there are a few phrases for which you minus, thereby distorting the overall perception.

            What does "general perception" mean? Journalism is a lot of water and one or two phrases that make the whole point. And just this couple of phrases expresses the attitude of the author and his vision of the situation.
      4. +12
        24 August 2015 20: 26
        Yes, prices have risen very much and compared to my Volgograd, it is very significant, but people, as you wrote correctly, hope that everything will normalize and will live better, the same Massandra plant is going through hard times, there is no salary a little more than before, but wine prices obviously overpriced and clearly not the management of the plant. But people still hope and believe in the best, the best with Russia (I heard it myself).
        1. m11
          24 August 2015 23: 47
          strange, it can’t be that nothing fell into the hands of the employees .. by the end of August, the Russian tourists had just surrounded the plant, and at inflated prices!
      5. +6
        24 August 2015 21: 08
        Well, bl ... We also did not expect that the buck would cost 70 wooden ... Although it is strange in 3-6% fall in our country and this muscle is getting 30-40% more expensive ... This is the scribe gentlemen, I really when we collapse the dollar with China, then we will buy a buck for 500 rupees ...
      6. +2
        24 August 2015 21: 24
        young people are generally disappointed ... one-price reason
        в last year I was in shock .., on the waterfront beer cheaper
        that’s all said !!!
      7. +2
        24 August 2015 22: 00
        Last (year) last (year) last year was different around, do you think in the past (year) Ukrainians better ??? everyone knows about this, do not deliver the snot.
      8. +9
        24 August 2015 22: 27
        I do not know. A co-worker in July was in Feodosia. Upon arrival, he said that the prices are about the same as ours. In the middle zone of the Russian Federation. But he admired the size of the servings in the cafe. Who to believe? I’ll rather believe my colleague, after all, we have known each other for about 10 years, and it seems like lying to him was not handy.
        1. +6
          24 August 2015 22: 46
          Compared to last year, prices have really risen sharply, but nevertheless they are lower than on our Kuban coast. But the sea and nature are still beautiful. Recommend!
        2. +4
          24 August 2015 22: 48
          I was in Sevastopol in early July, prices roughly corresponded to St. Petersburg. But everyone is waiting for the bridge!
        3. m11
          24 August 2015 23: 52
          and in Sevastopol it’s even cheaper to eat than in Feodosia
      9. +1
        25 August 2015 03: 35
        We are not like Ukrainians. Our identity is connected with the Black Sea. We eat fish. " what passage .. then they are closer to the Japanese rather ..
      10. +1
        25 August 2015 09: 54
        Yeah, they probably forgot that the hryvnia sank 3 times. Those prices that were before the Maidan have long been gone.
  2. +15
    24 August 2015 18: 16
    It's time for the French to stop complexing about the Russians in CRIMEA ....
  3. +16
    24 August 2015 18: 18
    Well, how can the French not be complexed, because once they have already been raked from there)
    1. +7
      24 August 2015 19: 50
      Oil painting through the eyes of an unbiased European. It’s joyful to realize that in Europe, and in the USA, there are more
  4. +25
    24 August 2015 18: 19
    And daggers do not ring, as the author of the article writes. The dirk is not heard at all when worn.
  5. +22
    24 August 2015 18: 25
    My grandfather was an artilleryman who liberated Sevastopol from the Nazis. This is the city of Glory of Russian Weapons.

    "Legendary Sevastopol,
    Unapproachable to enemies.
    Sevastopol, Sevastopol -
    The pride of Russian sailors! "
  6. +6
    24 August 2015 18: 25
    Last sentence - bravo to the author ...
  7. +8
    24 August 2015 18: 26
    The Russians have Russian love .... But the French themselves know what
  8. +18
    24 August 2015 18: 35
    Sevastopol is definitely a separate issue. It’s a different mentality. Which can probably be compared only with the mentality of the inhabitants of Kerch! Forgotten Kerch is as Cool as Sevastopol. Great History. Russian. Not for taming!
  9. +7
    24 August 2015 18: 35
    And the photo is cool! On the desktop!)
    1. +2
      24 August 2015 19: 23
      Quote: Ivan Ivanovich
      And the photo is cool! On the desktop!)

      You are welcome ! -
      link in comment

      Great view !
  10. +18
    24 August 2015 18: 41
    Just returned from Sevastopol !!! The city is a museum! Good people, very kind !!! Much needs to be redone, especially in the field of healthcare and the transport structure, but people are more than optimistic! I saw at the bus station Ukrainians leaving for ruin after a rest, their faces all sad because of hopelessness, as if they would not return.
  11. +27
    24 August 2015 18: 47
    Last year, our friends rested in Sevastopol, in a sanatorium. Vasya is a captain of the second rank, he graduated from the Nakhimov School. Now lives in Kaliningrad with his wife. Both are natives of Sevastopol. It was the anniversary of the release. Vasya talked with cadets. They said that after the annexation of the Crimea, they were the first to ... GOT. The school is in full swing repair. The cadets began ... LESSONS. The Navy of Ukraine has a quota in the school. Some of the Ukrainian cadets undergo practical training in the Russian fleets. They do not want to serve Ukraine. Many are thinking of accepting Russian citizenship. My wife is a native of Sevastopol. She says that Sevastopol never considered themselves Ukrainians.
  12. +8
    24 August 2015 20: 53
    Difficult. And it will be even more difficult in connection with the current processes in the world. But we will survive. Not like that. Only a request to the Crimeans - do not take three skins from us, from the "savages", we are the same people, only a little more honest than government officials ...
    1. +2
      24 August 2015 22: 32
      And you can rip off seven skins from officials.
  13. +4
    24 August 2015 21: 22
    Only the future that arises in their view is not very similar to what the Western leadership dreams of.

    It just seemed to me that between the lines there was: "Dream, dream, dreaming is not harmful, only soon all your dreams will break on the solid cliff of reality"?
    During a trip to the French cemetery of Sevastopol (we still have to pay for gasoline), Pavel and Alexander do not show vindictiveness

    It seems strange to the Frenchman that the Russians (oh, horror!) Do not show vindictiveness. And then, of course, I don’t know, maybe those guys worked for the French, but why the hell should someone pay for the French? Russian hospitality? Fire, fire.
    The article has many more similar places, some of which have already been discussed in the comments. But that's not the point. The article is very ambiguous, it blows from it with something ... unkindly-hiding, wretchedly envious.
    1. m11
      25 August 2015 00: 00
      but it seems to me that in this phrase the key phrase "Western leadership"
  14. +5
    24 August 2015 21: 29
    "... But he always occupied a special place, he was by himself," not Ukraine and not Russia "...." Sevastopol without family and tribe ??? This is with a hangover ??? The Russians, the Russians built it!

    Well, correct me if I'm wrong. But under the USSR, Sevastopol was a city of Union significance and did not belong to either the Ukrainian SSR or the RSFSR. Of course, this does not negate the fact that it was laid under Catherine, as well as the fact that it was and remains a city of Russian Glory. And the modern Ukrainian nation didn’t stand on either side.
    1. +2
      24 August 2015 22: 52
      The article is rotten, and the author does not mean the USSR, saying that the city "ALWAYS" was itself "not Ukraine and not Russia." There was no Ukraine as such before, so the city has always been "not Russia"?
    2. +1
      25 August 2015 00: 13
      Of course they are wrong. In the USSR, there was no such thing as a city of union significance. Any territory, any settlement of the USSR belonged to one or another union republic. Until 1954 Sevastopol was a city of republican subordination of the RSFSR, then it became a city of republican subordination of the Ukrainian SSR. Although in reality allied structures played a leading role in the administration of Sevastopol, as well as in the administration of Kazakhstan's Baikonur (Leninsk), for example.
      Sevastopol did not enter the Crimean region. On the Soviet side, the chairman of the Sevastopol city executive committee did not report to the chairman of the Crimean regional executive committee, he directly went to the chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Ukrainian SSR. But, on the other hand, the party organization of Crimea was united both before 1954 and after. On the party line, the First Secretary of the Sevastopol City Committee and the Chairman of the Sevastopol City Executive Committee obeyed the First Secretary of the Crimean Regional Party Committee. Thus, on the Soviet side, the chairman of the Crimean regional executive committee had no power in Sevastopol. But the first secretary of the Crimean regional committee on the party line led two regions - the Crimean region and the city of republican subordination Sevastopol.
  15. +1
    24 August 2015 21: 30
    Bridge, rather a bridge! Otherwise, it is almost Kamchatka or Sakhalin, only without corresponding allowances. By the way, the bridge has not yet been built, and in Ukraine they have already promised to blow it up. So, you need to think something, it’s a very large object and getting to it will not be difficult.
  16. +4
    24 August 2015 21: 40
    The article is written with subtext, such as Sevastopol is not Russia. The author is cunning or pretending that he does not know the history of Sevastopol, but it seems he is trying to sow the seeds of discord between the Russians and, as it were, the Russians, i.e. conducts cautiously all the same Western idea - divide and conquer with the hope that it will work. And Crimeans themselves must control their managers and drive offenders and thieves to the neck from the power! All the best to them and may not be likened to market reethers in relation to vacationers, and then everything will be fine. They will organize the work of local enterprises and everything will become cheaper, because it is known - heifer is half-breed overseas, but transporting the ruble! good
  17. +6
    24 August 2015 23: 47
    The Lyagushatsky author missed almost the most important thing: a year and a half ago Sevastopol and Crimea escaped WAR AND GREAT BLOOD.
    Comparison - in some 300 km.
  18. +2
    25 August 2015 01: 09
    Under Putin, a humiliated country is trying to get back on its feet, all the same awkward, and sometimes rude.

    they themselves stand in front of the United States with cancer, but the fact that Russia is on its knees does not stop. The life of the paddlers does not teach anything.
  19. 0
    25 August 2015 04: 33
    had to pay the USSR as a whole and city ​​of the martyr Sevastopol in particular

    Author, why are you? What city is a martyr? Hero city, a city of military glory !! But not a martyr. Offended ...

    Before [that is, before the Ukrainian crisis of 2014, approx. Ed.] the city was dark, and now it sparkles. " Like limestone of local quarries (a city was built from it for centuries), it suddenly acquired new properties.

    Well, if only in a figurative sense, in fact, they didn’t do anything outwardly, and so we always had a well-groomed city!
  20. +2
    25 August 2015 05: 08
    Sevastopol - Hero City, and that’s it ...
  21. 0
    25 August 2015 09: 00
    As many fates, so many opinions. Always dreamed of visiting the Crimea. The brother came recently from there. He was treated in the sanatorium MO. Former sanatorium of the Warsaw Treaty countries. He came to be treated. Spent a lot of money. Not cured. For 25 years, the sanatorium did not carry out repairs. There is a medical base, but you must pay for all procedures (if you want according to the destination). They are so used to it. After a year, two will all settle down. In the same sanatorium Buck 12 billion rubles. Russia will make repairs. And workers will be forced to change their mentality. If they can.
  22. +1
    25 August 2015 10: 12
    Now I am in Sevastopol. Impressions are ambivalent, sometimes to the point of cognitive dissonance. Superbly organized and presented memory of the past, constant confirmation of the present, i.e. everything confirming that Sevastopol is a hero city, a city of military glory and a city of the Black Sea Fleet of Russia. But ... You just wonder at the elementary mess on the roads, rudeness in shops and stalls, and even the reactions of the townspeople cause shock. The general impression from such "communication" is that we, newcomers, should be glad that we are generally served and taken somewhere. Terrible.
    And further. Relatives in the steppe Crimea said that yes, everything has risen in price, but they still live better than before. (Friends called from Kiev: 500 gr. Was paid for a set of products that cost 250 rubles here. And, indeed, young men are grabbed on the street and forced to go to the military enlistment office, not even allowing them to call home. First-hand information. Not invented. ) So everything is relative.