“Iron Felix”

New statute to Secret Police Founder in Crimea

Two new monuments to the first Soviet secret police chief credited with architecting Stalin’s repressions have appeared in southern Russia and annexed Crimea, sparking mixed reactions. (Dzerzhinsky founded the Cheka and the OGPU).

The busts of Felix Dzerzhinsky (“Iron Felix”) in the Russian city of Krasnodar and the Crimean city of Simferopol were unveiled on Sept. 11, his 144th birthday.1

You can read all about him at the digital Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library (helps if you read Russian).

The Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library was opened May 27, 2009.2  It is a federal electronic storage of digital copies of the most important documents on the history, theory and practice of Russian statehood, Russian language, as well as a multimedia multifunctional (cultural, educational, research, information and analytical) status of the national library of Russia.

Russia inaugurated its National Digital Library in St. Petersburg. President Dmitry Medvedev, who officially opened the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library in the Synod building in Senate Square, received the first electronic library card pass No. 1. Former President Vladimir Putin made an appeal to the Russian parliament during a speech after Russia's first president died in 2007 for a library to be built in Yeltsin's name.

"This library was given the status of national library last October," according to Medvedev in his speech at the opening ceremony. "It will house what I hope will become the fullest collection of documents on the history of the Russian state, Russian society and Russian law. It will cover all different periods, including the modern era."

Medvedev gave the library a copy of the Russian Constitution from the Kremlin collection that was used at his own presidential inauguration. It will be part of a collection of other documents of historical significance that were signed by Peter the Great and Catherine the Great. The library will also link with the World Digital Library, ensuring that Russian citizens and those around the world will have access to its digitized collections.3


Ashling, Jim. “Russia, Saudi Arabia, Korea, and Canada Unveil New Libraries.” Information today 26.7 (2009): 18–.


Maistrovich, Tatiana. “Typology of Electronic Libraries.” Slavic & East European Information Resources 15, no. 4 (2014): 240–46.