Science goes into battle

Latest tragic events connected with Russia scientists seem to have really stirred up Russian society. One hardly could be indifferent to what has happened with Vladimir Dobrenkov, dean of sociology faculty of Moscow State University, or with Andrei Brushlinski, director of Psychology Institute of Russian Academy of Science. Many people who earlier supported liberal ideas now believe the death penalty should be again introduced in the country to put an end to the existing situation. PRAVDA.Ru already wrote that professor Dobrenkov’s demand to cancel moratorium on the death penalty had been supported by more than 100 professors of Moscow colleges. According to sociological poll’s results, carried out in Moscow by Research Institute of Moscow Humanitarian and Social Academy, overwhelming majority of Moscow citizens - 89 percent – support cancellation of the moratorium. For the time being, Moscow keeps composure. While open letters, appeals addressed to the authorities are still arriving… “Only within this January, Russian Academy of Science lost two scientists with world fame – academician Glebov (died as a result of a bandit attack in St Petersburg) and Corresponding Member of the Academy Brushlinski (was killed in Moscow). Therefore, it was visually confirmed that in today’s Russia, science is being annihilated not only financially, but physically, too. Scientists who are unprotected from criminals as any Russian citizen are all the more unprotected, because they belong to the poorest levels of Russian society. We consider it to be necessary one more time to draw attention of the society and of the lawmakers to the fact that in today’s Russia it is completely impossible to normally carry out scientific work, as well as other kinds of work. Death of representatives of Russian intellectual elite (Glebov and Brushlinski were not first scientists who died as a result of bandit attacks) shows us how seriously Russian society is demoralized. If we want Russia to have the future, real steps should be made to settle serious social contradictions and to bridle criminal situation in the country. We appeal Russian authorities not to sacrifice living people to lifeless tenets of liberal ideology, but to start establishing order in the country.”

I.Melnikov, chairman of State Duma Committee on Education and Science; V.Strakhov, academician, chairman of For Revival of Russian Science movement; V.Sobolev, chairman of Council of Trade Union of Russian Academy of Science Workers Translated by Vera Solovieva

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