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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The Russophobes Threaten...... Eurovision!

You really couldn't make this up.

The DT reports:

Baltic nations Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia may pull out of the annual Eurovision Song Contest, to be held next year in Moscow.
A poll in Estonia has already backed the boycott, while pressure is also rising for a Polish withdrawal.
Estonia's culture minister Laine Janes, said: "Solidarity must exist with Lithuania and Latvia to show consolidated support for Georgia".

Wow, I bet Messrs Putin and Medvedev won't be able to sleep tonight about the prospect of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland boycotting the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest.

Over the last few weeks we've heard all manner of hysterical threats against Russia. Russia should be expelled from the G8. Sanctions should be placed on Russia. Russia should be isolated. Yet of course, nothing has happened, because quite simply, the west needs Russia (or more particuarly Russian energy) more than Russia needs anything the west has to offer. So what are we left with? A boycott of the Eurovision Song Contest. How utterly laughable.

Anyway, the extremely wallyish intervention of Estonia's Cultural Minister (now installed as 8-11 favourite to win the next Wally of the Week Award), gives us a great excuse to show once more the wonderful winner of the 1975 Eurovision Song Contest. Take it away Gettie!


Roland Hulme said...

You like some bloody funny music, Neil!

Riddle me this, though... Why do all these non-European countries compete in the 'Euro' vision song contest? Isn't the byline 'A Song for Europe.'

I mean, since when is ISRAEL in Europe?

Anonymous said...

Roland - why don't you just look it up?

But while we're on daft rhetorical questions, since when is Russia *not* in Europe?

Neil Clark said...

Hi Roland: Israel takes part because although geographically it's not in Europe it is a member of the EBU (European Broadcasting Union).

Robin Carmody said...

And it is also in UEFA (though only since 1991 - it was in the Asian Federation but was thrown out by an Arab power bloc, and for a while it was, improbably, an associate member of Oceania, playing World Cup qualifiers against Australia, NZ etc).

frisbee said...

All the other Middle Eastern states could take part if those pesky Eurovision rules didn't require them to broadcast the Israeli entry.

frisbee said...

And getting back on topic, would you not agree that the Baltic states and Poland have very very sound historical reasons for being highly suspicious of Russia? And that belittling those concerns might not be an especially sensible (let alone tactful) way of going about things?

Roland Hulme said...

Thanks for the explaination! I looked it up on Wikipedia too. I love Wikipedia. It explains it:

"The "European Broadcasting Area" is bounded on the west by the western boundary of Region 1, on the east by the meridian 40° East of Greenwich and on the south by the parallel 30° North so as to include the western part of the USSR, the northern part of Saudi Arabia and that part of those countries bordering the Mediterranean within these limits. In addition, Iraq, Jordan and that part of the territory of Turkey lying outside the above limits are included in the European Broadcasting Area."

As for Russia - isn't it 'Eurasian' - as in, transcontinental? encompassing both Europe and Asia (and whever the hell else they fancy invading at that point in time?)

Anonymous said...

notice the EU and its like dont boycott or otherwise punish Georgia for the initial invasion of South Ossetia, nor do they rebuke US or Israel for supplying weapons and mercenary expertise.


Anonymous said...

When the west was threatening Russia with sanctions and military incursions the Kremlin brushed those threats aside but now that a few countries have threatened to not send their drag queens to Russia I am sure the Russian government will be much more compliant.

olching said...

Here's a nice little wikimap of all members of the EBU (and they can participate in the Eurovision song contest). Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon; they are all permitted to participate. Even the US and Canada are associate members (not sure that qualifies them, though).

Robin: The UEFA decision is different to the EBU...but what is truly bizarre is why Kazakhstan joined UEFA when they haven't got a chance in hell to ever qualify (unlike perhaps through the Asian federation route where they were previously playing). England to get a battling 0:0 there later on this season?

Roland Hulme said...

"Notice the EU and its like dont boycott or otherwise punish Georgia for the initial invasion of South Ossetia."

Erm. Because it was part of their territory?

It would be like the British army invading Wales (which has it's own independence movement.)

You can argue that Ossetia SHOULDN'T have been part of Georgia, but it was, technically.

Anonymous said...

Notice how people state that Ossetia is apart of Georgia (thus Georgia wasn't acting aggressively, undemocratic or whatnot) without applying the same rule to Kosovo and Serbia.