Music

Hands Across the Unbreakable Union

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Today's dose of YouTube surrealism: The Soviet national anthem is transformed into a five-minute slice of '80s pop-rock. The video that runs with it is the Soviet "Morning in America" commercial, the Soviet "God Bless the U.S.A.," the Soviet "Hands Across America," perhaps even the Soviet "Hands Across Your Face," all rolled up in a Bizarro-world version of the Reagan era. I would credit this clip with the collapse of communism, except that this site claims it was recorded right after the USSR fell, which if true would make the performance an exercise in irony, early nostalgia, or 80-proof Russian absurdism. Maybe all three.

Still more versions of the anthem here. More on the Soviet pop machine here. And here's a story about Vladimir Putin's attempts to cast himself as the Russian FDR. Given Roosevelt's rotten record on civil liberties, the comparison might be more apt than he thinks.

[Hat tip: Bryan Alexander.]