German journalist Matthias Schepp drove along the Russian-Chinese border from Transbaikalia to the Amur region. Most of his story shocked the peaceful village in the Chita region, located near the border with China. Here in reality embodied literary post-apocalyptic scenario.
Interpreter blog offers readers Shepp memories, which he published in the magazine Spiegel.
To achieve the Peace to have a lot of time and patience. Four day or train goes to Lake Baikal, then another 1,000 km from the district town of Chita in the hinterland, and then another 300 km away to the south-east — in the direction of China.
Peace does not justify his own name. Nothing in this settlement does not breathe peace and tranquility. In the middle of a ruined buildings of a pack of wild dogs roam, longish winter actually killed the road, and in the eyes of the few remaining local residents betrays indifference. Meanwhile, in Russian, the peace has been a well-kept a garrison town with a cinema, children's parks and gardens. Previously, there was based motorized infantry unit, which was aimed against China.
After 1991, the army withdrew from these places, and along with it, and it took most of the inhabitants. Those who remained for whatever reason, had to live under new criteria. Initially of prefabricated houses, where the officers lived, they pulled out the frame along with the windows, and sold their car or on the road, or at the very Chita. Then there were sawn pipe, details of heating and put on the scrap metal which was exported to China. Then came the turn of the brick houses that have become apart on the bricks. Panel houses in the village are like skeletons, gnawed by unknown predators — a sign of rolling to a decline of the country.
— My brother Vadim died in one of the houses of old times — says local resident Ira. — Together with him were killed 6 more people.
According to her, they filled up the brick wall of the building, which they manually dismantled. Ira herself lives in the adjoining village of Bezrechnaya and works in a cafe "Maria", which is located on the highway leading to China. The cafe in the evenings going to the local inhabitants, who for vodka, beer and tea discussions are local announcements.
If in the Peace apocalypse has long come, then Bezrechnoy he stands on the threshold. Local resident Galina even wrote a letter to Dmitry Medvedev, in which she asked the President of the Russian Federation to take care of the region.
— We have no doctors, pharmacies, and work. There is nothing at all — she says.
In Bezrechnoy live 713 people. Last year, 27 people died, and no one was born.
— If so it goes on, then we have to become migrant workers in China or on the contrary — to work on the Chinese in their own country — predicts Galina. In general the same theme China in the discussion of local residents is the first place. And although the official Kremlin is worried enough about this, but the 3645 km border — one of the great land borders in the world — between Russia and China, should inspire some fear.
According to the views of the Shepp, despite the adverse weather conditions in Siberia, it was empty, and China desperately needed natural resources and land, because he believes in the future Beijing peacefully swallow him all the right areas. He recalls the saying of the philosopher Konstantin Leontiev from 1891, in which he cites two possible factors of death of — or in anger China, or due to the merger with pan-European federation.
But so far the cooperation between China and Russia is based on the conventional model — the Kremlin a provider of raw materials, and the Celestial Empire — consumer products, so called "consumer goods". Shepp also notes that our homeland has become so smith which forged blade for Beijing — because Russia has supplied a long time in this country its latest military developments. At the moment, China has learned to create their own and no longer needs to "help" northern neighbor.
Each year of China Russia also grows in the import of sophisticated products — pipes, metal, machines, drilling machines, cars, trucks, and electronics. Chinese without undue publicity get in the border regions of the Russian Federation enterprise, for example, according to Shepp, they have gained in Chita last tank repair plant and invest 10's and hundreds of millions of dollars in the purchase of land.
German journalist surprise that China is beginning to press down under economically self Russian border regions can only be caused by a weak awareness. After all, back in 2009, the Kremlin and Beijing signed a strategic agreement that will create the Celestial Empire in Siberia its mining, processing enterprises, will take over completely the development of several hundred deposits of minerals, will build on the terrain of Siberia their settlements. With all of this work force will deliver only China, and the Chinese will have the right of extraterritoriality and its police.