Mikhail Tereshchenko, the son of a wealthy sugar factory owner, was born on 18th March, 1886. He studied at Kiev University and Leipzig University and in 1910 he joined the Freemasons. Other prominent members included (Alexander Konovalov, Alexander Kerensky and Nikolai Nekrasov).
Tsar Nicholas II was an autocratic ruler. His Chief Minister, Sergi Witte, suggested that he carried out a program of reforms. He eventually agreed and published the October Manifesto. This granted freedom of conscience, speech, meeting and association. He also promised that in future people would not be imprisoned without trial. Finally he announced that no law would become operative without the approval of a new organization called the Duma. However, whenever it disagreed with him he closed it down.
Witte was eventually replaced by Peter Stolypin, who made changes to the electoral law. This excluded national minorities and dramatically reduced the number of people who could vote in Poland, Siberia, the Caucasus and in Central Asia. The new electoral law also gave better representation to the nobility and gave greater power to the large landowners to the detriment of the peasants. Changes were also made to the voting in towns and now those owning their own homes elected over half the urban deputies.
It was under this new format that Tereshchenko was elected to the Duma as a representative of the Russian Progressive Party in 1912. The reactionaries and the nationalists were still in the majority but there was a significant increase in the number of radicals (Socialist-Revolutionaries, Mensheviks, Bolsheviks).
The outbreak of the First World War caused great conflict in the Duma between those who opposed or supported the war effort. In 1914 the Russian Army was the largest army in the world. However, Russia's poor roads and railways made the effective deployment of these soldiers difficult. By December, 1914, the army had 6,553,000 men. However, they only had 4,652,000 rifles. Untrained troops were ordered into battle without adequate arms or ammunition. In 1915 Russia suffered over 2 million casualties and lost Kurland, Lithuania and much of Belorussia. Agricultural production slumped and civilians had to endure serious food shortages.
In September 1915, Tsar Nicholas II replaced Grand Duke Nikolai as supreme commander of the Russian Army fighting on the Eastern Front. This failed to change the fortunes of the armed forces and by the end of the year there were conscription riots in several cities. He ordered an offensive led by General Alexei Brusilov, commander of the Russian Army in the South West. When the offensive was called to a halt in the autumn of 1916, the Russian Army had lost almost a million men.
During the war Tereshchenko he helped organize the Red Cross hospitals. In 1915 he became the chairman of the Military Industry Committee of the Kiev district and deputy chairman of the All-Russian Military Industry Committee. Although he gave loyal support to the government during this period, other members of the Duma were highly critical of the government.
On 26th February Nicholas II ordered the Duma to close down. Members refused and they continued to meet and discuss what they should do. Michael Rodzianko, President of the Duma, sent a telegram to the Tsar suggesting that he appoint a new government led by someone who had the confidence of the people. When the Tsar did not reply, the Duma nominated a Provisional Government headed by Prince George Lvov. Mikhail Tereshchenko was asked to become Finance Minister. Other ministers included Pavel Milyukov (Foreign Minister), Alexander Guchkov (Minister of War), Alexander Kerensky (Minister of Justice), Alexander Konovalov (Minister of Trade and Industry) and Peter Struve (Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
Soon after taking power Pavel Milyukov wrote to all Allied ambassadors describing the situation since the change of government: "Free Russia does not aim at the domination of other nations, or at occupying by force foreign territories. Its aim is not to subjugate or humiliate anyone. In referring to the "penalties and guarantees" essential to a durable peace the Provisional Government had in view reduction of armaments, the establishment of international tribunals, etc." He attempted to maintain the Russian war effort but he was severely undermined by the formation of soldiers' committee that demanded "peace without annexations or indemnities".
As Robert V. Daniels, the author of Red October: The Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 (1967) pointed out: "On the 20th April, Milyukov's note was made public, to the accompaniment of intense popular indignation. One of the Petrograd regiments, stirred up by the speeches of a mathematician who happened to be serving in the ranks, marched to the Marinsky Palace (the seat of the government at the time) to demand Milyukov's resignation." With the encouragement of the Bolsheviks, the crowds marched under the banner, "Down with the Provisional Government".
On 5th May, Pavel Milyukov and Alexander Guchkov, the two most conservative members of the Provisional Government, were forced to resign. Milyukov was replaced by Tereshchenko and Guchkov was now replaced as Minister of War by Alexander Kerensky. He toured the Eastern Front where he made a series of emotional speeches where he appealed to the troops to continue fighting. On 18th June, Kerensky announced a new war offensive. Encouraged by the Bolsheviks, who favoured peace negotiations, there were demonstrations against Kerensky in Petrograd.
Tereshchenko continued Milyukov's foreign policy course, which led to his conflict with opponents of Russia's participation in the First World War. Kerensky was also unwilling to end the war. In fact, soon after taking office, he announced a new summer offensive. Soldiers on the Eastern Front were dismayed at the news and regiments began to refuse to move to the front line. There was a rapid increase in the number of men deserting and by the autumn of 1917 an estimated 2 million men had unofficially left the army. Some of these soldiers returned to their homes and used their weapons to seize land from the nobility. Manor houses were burnt down and in some cases wealthy landowners were murdered. Kerensky and the Provisional Government issued warnings but were powerless to stop the redistribution of land in the countryside.
After the failure of the July Offensive on the Eastern Front, Kerensky replaced General Alexei Brusilov with General Lavr Kornilov, as Supreme Commander of the Russian Army. The two men soon clashed about military policy. Kornilov wanted Kerensky to restore the death-penalty for soldiers and to militarize the factories. On 7th September, Kornilov demanded the resignation of the Cabinet and the surrender of all military and civil authority to the Commander in Chief. Kerensky responded by dismissing Kornilov from office and ordering him back to Petrograd.
Kornilov now sent troops under the leadership of General Krymov to take control of Petrograd. Kerensky was now in danger and so he called on the Soviets and the Red Guards to protect Petrograd. The Bolsheviks, who controlled these organizations, agreed to this request, but in a speech made by their leader, Lenin, he made clear they would be fighting against Kornilov rather than for Kerensky. Within a few days Bolsheviks had enlisted 25,000 armed recruits to defend Petrograd. While they dug trenches and fortified the city, delegations of soldiers were sent out to talk to the advancing troops. Meetings were held and Kornilov's troops decided to refuse to attack Petrograd. General Krymov committed suicide and Kornilov was arrested and taken into custody.
Alexander Kerensky now became the new Supreme Commander of the Russian Army. His continued support for the war effort made him unpopular in Russia and on 8th October, Kerensky attempted to recover his left-wing support by forming a new coalition that included more Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries. However, with the Bolsheviks controlling the Soviets, and now able to call on 25,000 armed militia, Kerensky was unable to reassert his authority.
Robert V. Daniels, the author of Red October: The Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 (1967) has argued: "There is a great deal of evidence that the conservatives desired, if they did not actually plan, an authoritarian solution to Russia's revolutionary crisis. Both Milyukov outside the cabinet and Tereshchenko within it told representatives of the Allied governments that they favored a conservative coup. There was talk of enlisting the former Commander in Chief General Brusilov to lead such a move."
On 24th October 1917 Lenin wrote a letter to the members of the Central Committee: "The situation is utterly critical. It is clearer than clear that now, already, putting off the insurrection is equivalent to its death. With all my strength I wish to convince my comrades that now everything is hanging by a hair, that on the agenda now are questions that are decided not by conferences, not by congresses (not even congresses of soviets), but exclusively by populations, by the mass, by the struggle of armed masses… No matter what may happen, this very evening, this very night, the government must be arrested, the junior officers guarding them must be disarmed, and so on… History will not forgive revolutionaries for delay, when they can win today (and probably will win today), but risk losing a great deal tomorrow, risk losing everything."
On the evening of 24th October, orders were given for the Bolsheviks to occupy the railway stations, the telephone exchange and the State Bank. The following day the Red Guards surrounded the Winter Palace. Inside was most of the country's Cabinet, although Kerensky had managed to escape from the city. The Winter Palace was defended by Cossacks, some junior army officers and the Woman's Battalion. At 9 p.m. the Aurora and the Peter and Paul Fortress began to open fire on the palace. Little damage was done but the action persuaded most of those defending the building to surrender. The Red Guards, led by Vladimir Antonov-Ovseenko, now entered the Winter Palace and arrested the Cabinet ministers. On 26th October, 1917, the All-Russian Congress of Soviets met and handed over power to the Soviet Council of People's Commissars.
Tereshchenko was arrested in the Winter Palace with other ministers of the Provisional Government and placed into the Peter and Paul Fortress. In the spring of 1918, he moved to Norway. He eventually settled in France where he urged allied invasion of Russia.
Mikhail Tereshchenko died in Monaco on 1st April, 1956.
The Crazy Real-Life Story Of The World's Largest Blue Diamond
Some diamonds are famous for their size, like the "Great Star of Africa," found in Transvaal, South Africa, and recorded to be 530.20 carats. Others, like the Hope diamond, are thought to be afflicted with a curse that will befall all those who try to lay their claim on the diamond.
The Tereshchenko diamond's fame comes from a little of both. Before it was cut, the Tereshchenko diamond was allegedly the largest blue diamond in the world. And although it's never been directly attributed to a curse, some of its owners haven't shied away from making such claims, and others certainly haven't had the best of luck. Diamonds with color are especially coveted due to how rare they are. And while saturated colors such as greens, pinks, or blues are some of the most valuable, even a slight discoloration can affect the value of a diamond. Larger diamonds also often have a more intense color since light travels farther through it.
But some of the Tereshchenko diamond's appeal also comes from its mysterious backstory. The diamond appears and disappears throughout history and while its trajectory can vaguely be traced, the complete story of the Tereshchenko diamond remains unknown.
Initially named after Mikhail Tershchenko, the diamond is now known as the Mouawad blue diamond after it was purchased in the summer of 1984 by billionaire businessman Robert Mouawad. This is the crazy real-life story of one of the world's largest blue diamonds.
Mikhail Ivanovich Tereshchenko
This chapter presents a translation of the Russian-language transcripts of the interview with Mikhail Ivanovich Tereshchenko (1886–1956), the deputy chairman of the all-Russian Central War Industries Committee and a key figure in the A.I. Guchkov-led plot to depose Nicholas II. Tereshchenko was also a leading participant in the February Revolution, and served in every cabinet of the Provisional Government from 2 March to 25 October 1917. This interview represents his only known testimony. With its focus on the first day of the February Revolution and the preceding developments, the interview sheds new light on such usually taboo topics as the preparations of a plot to remove Nicholas II. It also suggests previously unknown connections between some of the main personalities of the February Days, andhelps explain Tereshchenko's appointment to the first revolutionary government.
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Would the Russian people accept the return of the tsar?
The last emperor Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra, and their five children and five servants were all executed by Bolshevik forces on July 17, 1918. After being shot in a basement in Yekaterinburg, their bodies were thrown into an unmarked grave and burned. It drew a blood-soaked curtain over the centuries-old history of the Russian monarchy, and the question of restoration was shelved indefinitely.
But here&rsquos the paradox. Even 101 years later, the last tsar is still popular. According to a 2018 poll by the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Center, the Russian public is more favorably disposed to him than to either Lenin or Stalin.
How many people want the monarchy back?
The result of the survey would suggest that Russians hold the monarchy in awe and reverence. But that&rsquos not quite the case.
Those whose lives overlapped with Romanov rule are now so few in Russia that personal experience is definitely not a factor in current monarchist attitudes. &ldquoI've been fascinated by history since childhood, and not just in school. Gradually I came to believe in monarchism,&rdquo 18-year-old Alik Danielyan, a self-professed monarchist, told Russia Beyond back in 2017. Alik runs the &ldquoMonarchy Enclave&rdquo group in VKontakte (the &ldquoRussian Facebook&rdquo), with almost 14,000 followers.
Protesters in Simferopol against the Matilda film
It was back then in 2017, the centenary year of the October Revolution, that the monarchy became a fashionable topic in Russia, and caused some heated arguments (though not quite as sparky as the ones in 1917). It had less to do with the actual centenary or the murder of the imperial family than with the pitched battles between Duma deputy Natalia Poklonskaya and the makers of the film Matilda about the love affair of Nicholas II with the ballerina Kshesinskaya (in the words of Poklonskaya, the film was &ldquoblasphemous&rdquo (since Nicholas II is now a saint) and &ldquodefiled&rdquo the royal family).
As shown by another poll, the likes of Alik in favor of restoring the monarchy make up 8% of the Russian population. For 19% of respondents, it depends on who exactly would wear the crown. And another 66% of all Russian citizens are categorically opposed to the return of the monarchy. As noted by political scientist Fyodor Krasheninnikov: &ldquoAfter 70 years of Soviet propaganda in Russia, the monarchy is still stubbornly viewed as an autocratic dictatorship, and not at all what is considered a monarchy in Europe.&rdquo Moreover, most Russians believe that the overthrow of the monarchy was &ldquonot a major loss&rdquo for the country.
What are Russian attitudes to the murder of the royal family?
The remains of the royal family were ceremonially buried in July 1998 (excluding Prince Alexei and his sister Maria, whose remains were discovered later and are in the Russian State Archive). The state funeral was attended by then President Boris Yeltsin, who described the massacre as &ldquoone of the most shameful pages in our history,&rdquo adding that the guilty parties were &ldquothose who committed this atrocity and those who justified it for decades afterwards.&rdquo
The opinion that the execution of the royal family was fair retribution for the mistakes of the emperor is held by just 3% of the Russian populace. In 2000, the Russian Orthodox Church canonized the murdered Romanovs as martyrs, after which an entire ritual of veneration and pilgrimage came into being. Churches were built on the sites of Ipatiev House, where the massacre took place, and Ganina Yama (&ldquoGanya&rsquos pit&rdquo) in Yekaterinburg, where the bodies were burned. In 2018, more than 100,000 believers came from all over Russia, as well as from Ukraine, France, Britain, the US, New Zealand, and elsewhere to pay homage. Many of them prayed all night, kneeling on the grass or directly on the asphalt. Some wept.
But how is all this relevant to monarchism today? Not at all, according to some historians. &ldquoIn Yekaterinburg, where the largest events marking the centennial of the Romanovs&rsquo deaths are being held, the Romanovs are martyred saints revered by devoted pilgrims, with virtually no reference to politics, policies, or ideology,&rdquo wrote Ala Creciun Graff, a PhD history student at the University of Maryland. Their canonization turned the Romanovs from political figures into religious ones, a symbol of faith. Moreover, one of the conditions for the canonization was that the Romanovs, as saints, should not be used in the political arena.
Where are the living descendants of the Romanovs?
Members of the Romanov family remain numerous to this day. Predominantly scattered across Western Europe and the US, they are mainly descended from the four sons of Emperor Nicholas I. The sister of the murdered Nicholas II, Xenia Alexandrovna, for instance, settled at Frogmore Cottage (not far from Windsor Castle), which is now occupied by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. That said, even if the Russian throne still existed, none of the descendants of the Romanovs would have the right to claim it (here&rsquos why).
Maria Vladimirovna in the interactive exhibition "Orthodox Russia.
Nevertheless, they often visit Russia, especially on the anniversary of the execution of the royal family, and remain apolitical, tacitly supporting Vladimir Putin. &ldquoIt's a matter of principle for us not to partake in politics,&rdquo says Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna, the head of the Russian Imperial House of the Romanovs (a Swiss-registered organization that unites the majority of Romanov descendants). She also states that the House of Romanov is opposed to restitution, and asks for neither the return of any property that belonged to their ancestors, nor compensation from the state. Her son, Grand Duke George, held an official position at Russia&rsquos Norilsk Nickel, the world&rsquos largest metallurgical company, from 2008 till 2014, advising the CEO and representing the company&rsquos interests in the European Union.
If using any of Russia Beyond's content, partly or in full, always provide an active hyperlink to the original material.
Born to a rich Tereshchenko family of a sugar factory owners, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and art patrons of Ivan Nikolaevich (1854–1903) and Elizabeth Mikhailovna. Mikhail had a younger brother Mykola (1894-?). His uncle Aleksandr Tereshchenko (1856–1911) worked in Saint-Petersburg. Mikhail Tereshchenko graduated from Kiev University and Leipzig University. In 1910, he joined the Freemasonry and became one of the five prominent Masons in Russia (the other four being Alexander Konovalov, Alexander Kerensky, Nikolai Nekrasov, and Ivan Yefremov). Mikhail Tereshchenko was a member of the Fourth State Duma (he shared the views of the Russian Progressive Party). In 1912–1914, Tereshchenko was the owner of a private publishing house Sirin in St Petersburg, which published Andrey Bely's pioneering novel Petersburg in three installments in 1913-14. During World War I, he took part in organizing the Red Cross hospitals. In 1915–1917, Mikhail Tereshchenko was the chairman of the Military Industry Committee of the Kiev district and deputy chairman of the All-Russian Military Industry Committee. After the February Revolution of 1917, Mikhail Tereshchenko was appointed Minister of Finance of the Provisional Kerensky Government. In April 1917, Tereshchenko (together with Kerensky and Nekrasov) was actively seeking to create a governmental interparty coalition with the Socialists. On 5 May 1917, he was appointed minister of foreign affairs after the resignation of Pavel Milyukov. Tereshchenko continued his foreign policy course, which led to his conflict with Minister of War Alexander Verkhovsky, who had considered Russia to be unable to continue the war. He was a member of the Directory in 1917. Tereshchenko was known to support the Ukrainian government that led to the establishment and recognition of the General Secretariat in Ukraine 1917.
On the night of 26 October, Mikhail Tereshchenko was arrested in the Winter Palace with other ministers of the Provisional Government and placed into the Peter and Paul Fortress. In the spring of 1918, he escaped from prison and fled to Norway with the Tereshchenko diamond and then France. Tereshchenko was one of the supporters of allied intervention in Soviet Russia. In 1920s and 1930s, he was engaged in financial activities in France and Madagascar.
Not Just Trump And Bloomberg: Here Are The Billionaire Politicians Of The Decade
Donald Trump, Michael Bloomberg and Jared Kushner attend The New York Observer's 25th Anniversary in . [+] New York in 2013.
Patrick McMullan via Getty Images
Even before Donald Trump’s victory in 2016 made him the first billionaire president in American history, members of the three-comma club were pouring resources into political campaigns in countries from Australia and Tanzania to South Korea and Nepal. Over the course of the past decade, dozens of billionaires ran for public office in elections around the world.
While President Trump’s fate now lies with the Senate following his impeachment in the House of Representatives, there are two other countries with a billionaire at the helm. Chilean President and billionaire investor Sebastián Piñera, in office since last year, is in his second stint after a previous four-year term ended in 2014. The Czech Republic is led by Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, an agricultural magnate who first won office in 2017. Forbes estimates his net worth at $3.6 billion, making him the richest elected national leader in the world, edging out Trump’s $3.1 billion fortune.
Trump isn’t even the richest politician in the U.S. — that title goes to Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, who was elected in November 2018 after one of the most expensive gubernatorial races in American history. In another pricey governors’ contest, the 2010 California race, former eBay CEO Meg Whitman lost to the incumbent Gov. Jerry Brown. And while there may be little precedent for billionaire presidents, there is no shortage of billionaire governors: both West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice and former Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, who ended his second term in January 2019, are worth ten figures.
Forbes found that Lebanon has the unusual distinction of being the only country with more than one billionaire leader in this decade. Current caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri, in office since 2016, was a longtime member of the billionaires list and worth an estimated $1.5 billion in 2018 he dropped off the list in 2019. He previously served as Lebanon’s prime minister from 2009 to 2011, when he was succeeded by Najib Mikati, a telecom billionaire who led the government until 2014.
It turns out that having billions of dollars at your disposal doesn’t always ensure victory: in Ukraine, the so-called “chocolate king” Petro Poroshenko won the presidency in 2014 — when Forbes estimated his net worth at $1.3 billion — but lost re-election this year to comedian Volodymyr Zelensky. In Russia, Brooklyn Nets co-owner Mikhail Prokhorov garnered a measly 8% of votes in his bid to unseat Vladimir Putin in 2012, and Foxconn founder Terry Gou finished a distant second in the 2019 presidential primaries for Taiwan’s opposition Kuomintang Party.
Uber’s Centimillionaire CEO Provokes Backlash After Moonlighting As Courier
Beachbody’s SPAC Merger With Peloton Rival Mints A New Billionaire
The Net Worth Of Joe Biden’s Cabinet
While many with ten-digit fortunes entered politics for the first time in the 2010s, some doubled down on their commitment to public office. Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who Forbes estimates is worth $7.2 billion, stepped down as the country’s leader in 2011 but went on to serve as a member of parliament and a senator before winning election to the European Parliament last May. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg left City Hall in 2013 but is back in the headlines since he announced his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination in November — and notably plunked down $30 million in an ad buy in cities across the country.
Not every billionaire sought the highest office in the land — plenty of others were content with contesting a seat in parliament. The list of ten-figure representatives stretches from steel baroness Savitri Jindal, who served in the legislature of the Indian state of Haryana from 2005 to 2014 and has a net worth of $6.5 billion, to South Korea’s Chung Mong-Joon, net worth $1.2 billion, a scion of the late founder of Hyundai who spent more than two decades in parliament before stepping down in 2014 to (unsuccessfully) run for mayor of Seoul.
For others, politics is a family business. Real estate tycoon Manuel Villar came third in the 2010 Philippine presidential elections and served in the Senate from 2001 to 2013 his wife, Cynthia, succeeded him in the Senate and their son, Mark, is a minister in President Rodrigo Duterte’s cabinet. Olivier Dassault of France and Magdalena Martullo-Blocher of Switzerland hold seats in their country’s respective parliaments, following in the footsteps of their fathers: Serge Dassault, who was a billionaire senator before his death in 2018 and Christoph Blocher, who divided his stock in the Swiss chemical giant Ems-Chemie among his four children in 2004 so he could run for office.
Bucking the assumption that they vote and campaign with their pocketbooks, some billionaires have embraced left-wing politics. Tom Steyer has put climate change and taxing the rich at the center of his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. Binod Chaudhary, Nepal’s only billionaire, won a seat in parliament for the far-left Marxist-Leninist Communist Party before switching to the centrist Nepali Congress in 2017.
Billionaires also became a common sight in non-competitive elections during the 2010s, particularly in Russia, where oligarch politicians have endured despite Vladimir Putin’s criticism of their presence in parliament in 2008. Suleiman Kerimov, a wealthy investor with a net worth of $9.7 billion, has been a mainstay in Russian politics since 1999, when he joined Russia’s lower house, the State Duma in 2008, he switched to the Federation Council, Russia’s equivalent of the Senate. Others ran for office only to leave it in short notice: Anatoly Lomakin, who made his fortune trading chemicals, joined the Duma in 2012 but stepped down the following year due to health issues.
The 2010s marked the arrival of America’s first billionaire president — and while it’s too early to predict what the next decade has in store, it’s likely that billionaires will continue to wield their wealth to run for office and gain political power. Here’s a list of current and former billionaires who entered politics in the past decade, ranked by order of net worth:
Democratic Presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg visits Philadelphia.
Source of wealth: Bloomberg LP
Position: Mayor of New York City (2002-13)
Running for: President of the United States (2020)
Suleiman Kerimov at the Russian Federation Council in Moscow, Russia.
Source of wealth: investments
Position: Member of the Russian State Duma (1999-2007) Member of the Russian Federation Council (2008-present)
Silvio Berlusconi attends the presentation of a new book by Italian writer Bruno Vespa in Rome.
Position: Prime Minister of Italy (1994-95, 2001-06, 2008-11) Member of the Italian Chamber of Deputies (1994-2013) Senator of Italy (2013) Member of the European Parliament (2019-present)
Terry Gou at a groundbreaking ceremony for the Foxconn factory in Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin.
Source of wealth: electronics
Ran for: President of Taiwan (2019 lost in the Kuomintang primary)
Manny Villar at his final campaign rally in the 2010 Philippine presidential election.
Source of wealth: real estate
Position: Senator of the Philippines (2001-13) Speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives (1998-2000) Member of the Philippine House of Representatives (1992-2001)
Ran for: President of the Philippines (2010 lost in the general election)
Savitri Jindal and her granddaughter Yashasvini Jindal at an award ceremony in New Delhi in 2016.
Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Position: Member of the Haryana Legislative Assembly, India (2005-14)
Olivier Dassault and his wife Natacha Nikolajevic attend the 2019 French Open in Paris.
Source of wealth: diversified
Position: Member of the French National Assembly (2002-present)
Magdalena Martullo-Blocher at a roundtable with Swiss business leaders and Chinese President Xi . [+] Jinping in Bern in 2017.
Source of wealth: chemicals
Position: Member of the Swiss National Council (2015-present)
Andrei Skoch at the Russian State Duma in 2016.
Position: Member of the Russian State Duma (1999-present)
Bidzini Ivanshvili at a party convention for his Georgian Dream party in Tbilisi, Georgia in 2018.
Source of wealth: investments
Position: Prime Minister of Georgia (2012-13)
Source of wealth: fertilizers
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2001-13)
Source of wealth: real estate, investments
Ran for: Governor of Florida (2018 lost in the Democratic primary) Senator from Florida (2010 lost in the Democratic primary)
Ran for: Governor of California (2010 lost in the general election)
Source of wealth: agriculture
Position: Prime Minister of the Czech Republic (2017-present)
Source of wealth: hotels, investments
Position: Governor of Illinois (2019-present)
Source of wealth: real estate, airport
Position: Member of the Russian State Duma (2003-16)
Source of wealth: real estate
Position: President of the United States (2017-present)
Source of wealth: investments
Position: President of Chile (2010-14, 2018-present) Senator of Chile (1990-98)
Source of wealth: oil, real estate
Ran for: Mayor of New York City (2013 lost in the Republican primary)
Position: Prime Minister of Lebanon (2005, 2011-14) Member of the Lebanese Parliament (2000-present)
Source of wealth: agriculture, land
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2006-14)
Source of wealth: diversified
Position: Member of the Tanzanian National Assembly (2005-15)
Source of wealth: truck stops
Position: Governor of Tennessee (2011-19) Mayor of Knoxville (2003-11)
Position: Member of the Australian Parliament (2013-16)
Source of wealth: diversified
Position: Member of the Nepalese Parliament (2008-12 2017-present)
Source of wealth: hedge funds
Running for: President of the United States (2020)
Jim Justice, II
Position: Governor of West Virginia (2017-present)
Source of wealth: investments
Position: Member of the Russian State Duma (2012-13)
Source of wealth: investments
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2004-09)
Source of wealth: construction materials
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2008-13)
Source of wealth: shipbuilding, industrial machines
Position: Member of the South Korean National Assembly (1988-2014)
Ran for: Mayor of Seoul (2014 lost in the general election)
Source of wealth: banking, investments
Position: Governor of Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine (2014-15)
Ran for: Vice President of Indonesia (2014 lost in the legislative election)
Serge Dassault (d. 2018)
Net worth (at time of death): $22.6 billion
Source of wealth: diversified
Position: Senator of France (2004-17) Mayor of Corbeil-Essonnes (1995-2009)
Net worth (in 2018): $1.5 billion
Source of wealth: construction, investments
Position: Prime Minister of Lebanon (2009-11, 2016-present) Member of the Lebanese Parliament (2005-present)
Net worth (in 2018): $1.5 billion
Source of wealth: auto parts
Position: Member of the Austrian National Council (2013-14)
Net worth (in 2017): $1.4 billion
Source of wealth: banking, IT, real estate
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2006-13)
Net worth (in 2014): $1.3 billion
Source of wealth: confectionery
Position: President of Ukraine (2014-19) Member of the Ukrainian Parliament (1998-2002 2003-07 2012-14)
Net worth (in 2018): $1 billion
Source of wealth: auto import and dealerships
Position: Member of the Russian State Duma (2007-15)
Net worth (in 2012): $1 billion
Position: Member of the Indian House of the People (2002-09, 2010-16)
Net worth (in 2011): $1 billion
Source of wealth: manufacturing
Position: Member of the Russian Federation Council (2005-10)
I cover billionaires and their wealth for Forbes. In the past, I've covered everything from oil & gas for Bloomberg News to the 2014 Indonesian presidential election for
I cover billionaires and their wealth for Forbes. In the past, I've covered everything from oil & gas for Bloomberg News to the 2014 Indonesian presidential election for the Jakarta Globe. I'm a graduate of Columbia Journalism School and UC Berkeley, and my work has also appeared in the Houston Chronicle, the Calgary Herald, and more.
My Son's Father Was Killed While Reporting on a Private Russian Militia. I'm Still Waiting for Justice
One year ago, on July 30, 2018, three Russian journalists were shot to death and their bodies left on the side of a road near a conflict zone in central Africa. Their names were Orkhan Dzhemal, a renowned conflict reporter Alexander Rastorguev, an award-winning filmmaker and their cameraman, Kirill Radchenko. The purpose of their trip to the Central African Republic was to film a documentary about the Wagner Group, a Russian private military company which has been active in several African countries in recent years, and which is believed to have ties with the Russian military and the state.
Authorities in Moscow say the reporters were killed in a random act of violence. It was a robbery gone wrong, goes the official line. But the colleagues of the victims have investigated the murders independently over the past year, and have come to a different conclusion &mdash that known associates of the Wagner Group were involved in these murders.
The victims&rsquo friends and families have meanwhile pled with the authorities in Russia to consider this evidence. Among the most vocal has been Dzhemal&rsquos ex-wife, Irina Gordienko, who is also one of Russia&rsquos most famous reporters. Ahead of the one-year anniversary of the murders, Gordienko described her experience not as a journalist but as a person bereaved and looking for justice.
A version of her account was first published in Novaya Gazeta, one of Russia’s last independent newspapers, where Gordienko is a correspondent. With her permission, TIME is publishing an edited translation of the piece as part of its Guardians series on the escalating war against the freedom of the press worldwide.
Most of my 17 years as a journalist have been spent reporting on the tougher parts of Russia, around the region known as the Caucasus, which has seen too much of war. I have seen dead bodies there, and the signs of inhuman torture that the heroes of my articles endured. I have written a lot about prisons, some of which still haunt me in my dreams. I&rsquove had to deal with just about every sort of police officer, investigator and prosecutor. But nothing quite prepared me for that day one year ago when Russian authorities summoned me in relation to the murder of my former husband, the journalist Orkhan Dzhemal.
Under the rules of Russian criminal procedure, they had classified me as a victim in the case. I wasn&rsquot the only one. Kirill and Alexander both left behind grieving parents. Orkhan and I have a son. In some ways my work had prepared me for victimhood I have written about hundreds of criminal cases in which the interests of regular people are barely taken into account. But I never realized what it really means to be a victim, or as the cops like to call me, a terpila, their heartless slang for someone who is made to endure.
Look the word “terpila” up in the Russian dictionary, and you will find several definitions &mdash including &ldquoa weakling incapable of self-defense.&rdquo Indeed, that pretty much describes how I feel after dealing with Russian investigators in the year since Orkhan was murdered.
I should clarify something before going further: As an official victim in this case, I have signed an agreement with the Russian authorities &ldquoon the non-disclosure of information on the preliminary investigation.&rdquo It prohibits me from sharing what I know of the police work behind this case. But I&rsquom not too worried about violating that agreement, because I haven&rsquot seen much police work going on.
My main point of contact among the investigators has been Detective Igor E. Zolotov, a beefy man who keeps his hair cut close to his skull. If there had been some police work for him to demonstrate, perhaps he would have shown me the case files already &mdash as the law allows. But he has always refused, each time throwing a thoughtful glance at the thick binder that sits atop his desk whenever I visit his office, its cover marked with the initials CAR, for Central African Republic.
Apart from Zolotov, I&rsquove had appointments with three other investigators over the past year, all related to my status as a victim. All of them were irreproachably polite yet turned pale each time I began to demand answers to the most elementary questions. They would sigh and complain that there&rsquos nothing to be done.
The official theory offered by the Investigative Committee, Russia’s version of the FBI, is that the murder was committed during a robbery by Arabic-speaking bandits who are active in that part of Africa. I categorically reject this explanation. There is not a single piece of evidence to support the notion that this was a robbery. The most valuable possessions of the victims were left untouched at the scene of the crime.
Yet the authorities in Russia offer no other explanations. They seem content to blame their own inaction on the police in central Africa. All they do is wait for answers to arrive from that continent far, far away. And so, as far as I can see, the Investigative Committee has managed to do nothing at all.
The last time I went to see Detective Zolotov, on July 10, my hope was to find out about a legal request my lawyers had filed exactly a month earlier, through the official channels of the Committee. Our request was simple: Take the article published by my newspaper under the headline, &ldquoChronicle of a well-orchestrated death,&rdquo and include it in the official case file.
The article was based on a private investigation carried out by a consortium of journalists known as the Dossier Center. Like Orkhan&rsquos last reporting trip &ndash the trip to Africa that got him killed &ndash the work of the Dossier Center was sponsored by the Russian businessman Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who supports a variety of journalistic efforts from his exile in London. Khodorkovsky does this as part of his vocal opposition to the Putin regime, and out of a desire to hold it to account.
The investigation found that the murder of Orkhan and his colleagues was not the work of some &ldquoArabic-speaking bandits.&rdquo The ones responsible are the men Orkhan went there to investigate, the report alleges, with the backing of Evgeny Prigozhin, a businessman better known as &ldquoPutin&rsquos chef&rdquo because of his close ties to the Kremlin.
Along with our legal request, we provided documents to support the conclusions of the Dossier investigation. These documents implicate known associates of the Wagner Group, a Russian mercenary company that has been linked to Prigozhin ever since it first gained attention in 2014, though Prigozhin denies any connection. The hired guns of the Wagner Group have been active in the Central African Republic since at least 2017. These are the people Orkhan went to the country to investigate.
Cell phone records obtained from the CAR show that men affiliated with the Wagner Group were in regular contact with each other there from July 28-30, when Orkhan and his team were in that country. The Russian mercenaries were also in contact with local police, who appear to have kept close watch over the journalists.
Now, exactly what involvement they had, if any, in the murders is not clear. Prigozhin and others implicated in the Dossier investigation all deny having anything to do with the murders. But we believe the evidence of their connection to this tragedy is at least compelling enough for Russian police to question them.
My lawyers asked investigators to do exactly that, but we received no response. And when I asked Detective Zolotov about this, he looked very surprised:
&ldquoIt&rsquos the first I&rsquove heard of it,&rdquo he said. &ldquoI haven&rsquot seen your request.&rdquo
My lawyer, Marina Andreeva, corrected him: &ldquoIt was delivered in person to the office of the Investigative Committee and handed to your colleague.&rdquo
&ldquoI get a lot of correspondence, might have missed it,&rdquo he said. &ldquoLet me check and get back to you.&rdquo
The detective got back to us fairly fast. After we&rsquod left, he called and rattled off the following: He didn&rsquot understand what we were talking about at first, but of course, yes, the request had been reviewed and would receive a prompt response.
It came a few hours later. The men affiliated with the Wagner Group would not be questioned by police, Detective Zolotov reported. In his view, &ldquothere was not enough information&rdquo linking these individuals to what had happened. From my sources at the Investigative Committee, I later learned how the detectives typically talk amongst themselves about questioning someone like Prigozhin: Why, they ask, would we want to disturb such a big and busy person?
As for our request, and the potential evidence it contained, the investigators said they would look into it as soon as possible. But what, exactly, does the Russian investigation consider possible?
Sending a group of investigators to Africa is apparently out of the question they say it&rsquos too expensive. Their last trip, in September 2018, had no clear results. It took all of three days.
That same month, my lawyer filed another request: Please deliver the clothing of the murder victims to Moscow. Without their clothes it is impossible to carry out a full ballistic analysis of the gunshot wounds that killed them.
She filed another request for the return of all the private things the team of journalists had with them while in CAR. She also asked that the mobile phone records of Orkhan, Kirill and Alexander be recovered from the local telecommunications company.
By studying these materials, we could reconstruct the events leading up to the murders. We might even be able to set out a plan to find the killers &mdash and discover who they answered to.
But several months later, nothing has been done.
When I ask Detective Zolotov about all this, he again throws up his hands: &ldquoWe have asked the Central African Republic to assist us. We send them orders, one after another. Nothing helps. There is no legal assistance agreement between our two countries, and we can&rsquot force them.&rdquo
This does not appear to be true. In August 2018, the governments of Russia and the CAR signed a military cooperation agreement, which includes the supply of Russian weapons and military instructors to the CAR. In April, that agreement was expanded to allow the Russian Defense Ministry to build an outpost in that country. Within that expanded deal, there is a section that calls for the law enforcement agencies of Russia and the CAR to “cooperate with each other directly” on criminal cases.
So where is this cooperation when it comes to the murder of three Russian citizens on the territory of the CAR? Are their killings not “criminal” enough?
Detective Zolotov sighed. There was one other thing he wanted to tell me, as our most recent meeting came to an end. It had to do with the clothes and other things we had been asking about &ndash three suitcases in all &ndash containing all the stuff that Orkhan, Kirill and Alexander had with them when they were killed. As it turns out, said Zolotov, these things have been sitting at the Russian embassy in Bangui, the capital of the CAR, for over three months. &ldquoHowever,&rdquo he said, &ldquoit is not possible to send them to Moscow.&rdquo
Using the diplomatic post is out of the question, I am told. The Russian Foreign Ministry has declined to help with that, while the Investigative Committee does not have the resources for it. Even the Ministry of Defense refused to help, claiming that its planes &ldquodon&rsquot fly there.&rdquo
&ldquoI might even want to go there and do something about it,&rdquo Detective Zolotov told me with a tone of regret as we said goodbye. &ldquoBut I can&rsquot go on my own, and my bosses don&rsquot send me,&rdquo he added, rolling his eyes.
There wasn&rsquot much else to say. The investigation into the murders of three Russian journalists clearly looks to be going nowhere, all thanks to the diligent inaction of my country&rsquos government. That inaction only serves to confirm one thing to me: Orkhan, Kirill and Alexander were not killed during a robbery.
And one day the Russian investigative authorities will have to answer for this. I don&rsquot intend to be their terpila. I will continue pushing for the truth. One day I&rsquoll need to explain to my son who killed his father, and why.
Films directed by Mikhail Tereshchenko
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Russia&rsquos Latest Military Tech From the 2018 Moscow V-E Day Parade
The parade is a coming-out party for the latest Russian military hardware.
The May 9 Victory Parade, held in Moscow every year on the anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe, is one of the largest spectacles held by any government. The parade commemorates the victory of the Soviet Union over Nazi Germany after a brutal four-year war, and the Russian armed forces are the center of the parade.
The Russian military tends to march its latest and greatest military equipment during the parade, not necessarily as a way of showing off, but to assure the public that the country is well defended and that such a cataclysmic war won&rsquot happen again. This year was no different, with new missiles, manned vehicles, and drones marching through Moscow past parade stands and throngs of Muscovites.
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