Last night's US Vice-Presidential debate has stirred some controversy in the Russian press and social media. Mostly because of some remarks made by Mike Pence, who attacked Putin with more vitriol than he did Hilary Clinton.
Referring to Putin as a little man and an international bully, Pence stated that the Russian 'threat' needed to be met with a masculine, broad-shouldered American military response. Such remarks seemed to ruffle the rather effete Senator Kaine, but drew little notice from the more virile Vladimir Putin. The Russians no doubt recall that recent broad-shouldered American military responses have ended up looking like this, or like this,
or like this.
What has the Russian people was Pence's ominous reference to an old Russian proverb which says: "The Russian Bear never dies, but hibernates." This remark has provoked many Russians---from the Kremlin on down---to find another Russian who'd ever heard of this expression.
So finally Sputnik News consulted with Dr. Vladimir Slavkin, a senior Professor of the Russian Language at Moscow University. Dr. Slavkin stated to the press that he had never heard of it either.
"The mere fact that Mr. Pence invented such a text doesn't make it a Russian proverb." the old Academic gravely noted, as though correcting a careless 10 year-old student, "The notion about the Russian Bear is very widespread, but the way he expressed it makes it neither a saying nor a proverb."
In the Prozac Nation---where all of our own proverbs and folklore has been relegated to Politically Correct oblivion as the product of dead white males, Pence can probably be excused for repeating something he'd probably heard at a Neocon fundraising dinner and wrongly attributing it Russian leaders. But though the slip won't make much difference to the average Ameroboob---who's been thoroughly disciplined by the Corporate Media to hate Russia---Pence still should be more careful with his words. Projecting the robust image he hopes to effect abroad won't be seen as credible when others see him as a dunce.