Mikhalkov and the Yeltsin Center Award: “European Museum of the Year,” or “An Iron Cross from the Wehrmacht”


May 10, 2016 – Fort Russ News –

– Ria.ru, translated by Tom Winter –

Yeltsin Center considers itself insulted by the words of Mikhalkov about the prize received by the museum 

MOSCOW, May 7 – RIA Novosti. At the Yeltsin Center, they called director Nikita Mikhalkov’s reactions to the European Museum of the Year contest insulting, and compared the award with the Oscar at the Academy Awards.

The day after it became known that the Museum of first Russian President Boris Yeltsin received the award of the competition “European Museum of the Year – 2017,” Mikhalkov — who earlier exclaimed about the destruction of the national self-consciousness in Yeltsin Center — in an interview with the radio station “Moscow Speaking” on Sunday said that the presentation of the European award to the museum is the best confirmation of his words. He compared the achievement of the Center with “awarding a citizen of the Soviet Union who became a police officer, an iron cross from the Wehrmacht.”

The museum noted that the filmmaker’s remarks “were not only insulting to the Yeltsin Center, but also to dozens of beautiful European museums, which have won this contest over the past forty years.”

“Every year, dozens of the best museums in Europe, after a hard selection by the jury members, consider it an honor to have participated in this competition. It is a celebration of dedicated, talented people in love with the museum who give millions of visitors their contact with world history and culture. For museum workers, this corresponds to the the Oscar in Los Angeles, the Cannes Film Festival or the Venice Film Festival for film makers.” the report said on the center’s website.

In the Yeltsin Center they apologized to their European colleagues for “a person who has a passport of our country publicly insulting and humiliating them.”

Earlier at the parliamentary hearings in the Federation Council Mikhalkov said that the Yeltsin Center’s activities are destroying the national identity of hundreds of children every day, as it provides a biased assessment of the history of Russia.*** 

[Read the transcript of Yeltsin’s phone call to George Bush here.] 

The widow of the first Russian president, Naina Yeltsin, called Mikhalkov’s statements false.

Yeltsin Center was opened in Yekaterinburg in November 2015, in an opening ceremony attended by President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. 

The main task of the center is to preserve, study and comprehend the historical legacy of Boris Yeltsin in the context of political and social events of the 1990s. The Center was conceived as a socio-political organization contributing to the construction of a rule-of-law state, and the study and development of the institution of the presidency in Russia.
Read the transcript of Yeltsin’s phone call to George Bush here

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