The Duck of Minerva

The Duck Quacks at Twilight

Evidence that I am a cranky crank

September 13, 2007

I like Foreign Policy’s Passport blog. I really do. But this kind of thing BUGS the living daylights out of me.

They have a perfectly good post on a bizarre attempt by a Russian regional governor to increase the local birthrate. And it’s illustrated with a stock photo of a rather bizarre postage stamp commemorating the “Week of the Child”. At least, I’m pretty sure that’s what it says. The reason I’m not totally positive?

The stamp is from Yugoslavia. It’s in Serbian, which is written in Cyrillic, and, of course, has much similarity to Russian, but isn’t Russian.

The bottom of the stamp reads “Belgrade, Oct 4-11, 1954”. The initials across the child’s chest are “FNRJ”, for Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia.

Anything Soviet, of course, would have СССР on it, as those of us who are old enough to remember the Cold War may recall.

It’s really not fair, because I’m sure that the poster doesn’t read Russian–and the stock photo site that it came from has it tagged as Russian. Still, it’s like nails on a chalkboard.

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