Thursday, October 27, 2016

In Kant`s and Iskander-robots Kaliningrad

Impressions from a worthwhile trip to the former Prussian Königsberg, now Kaliningrad, Russia, begins to sink in. The small enclave between Poland and Lithuania, with one million inhabitants in the entire region, of which half a million in the Kaliningrad (760 celebrated as a city in 2015). Here, where Russian Iskander missiles for some time are deployed and could destroy half of Sweden if an accident should occur. A city the size of Gothenburg is much nicer and more open than its reputation and with an excellent Immanuel Kant museum, multicultural atmosphere and a good news that the new treatment plant, partly financed by Sweden and Denmark now since April 2016 is in full operation. This means that the drain from the half-million city of Kaliningrad now no longer goes untreated into the Baltic Sea. The same applies now also the corresponding treatment plant in St. Petersburg, who now also works and got a good lead. Positive news for everyone who wants to see a cleaner Baltic Sea. Immanuel Kant, the German philosopher 1700s, lived and worked all his life in Köningsberg until his death in 1804. Here he took his daily walks across the seven bridges punctually as a clock and never left the city throughout his life. Here he is also buried next to the cathedral, and where even a fine museum is housed in the cathedral's towers. He who among other things wrote: "Two things fill me with wonder, the starry sky above me and the moral law within me." Kant memory cherished - partly with German support - and is a major draw for the tourism industry in Kaliningrad. Otherwise there is not much left of the Franco-Prussian heritage of Köningsberg in today's Russian Kaliningrad. The same applies to its early history dating back to 1255 when a German word founded the city. In 1701 became so Köningsberg capital of the Kingdom of Prussia. But the city's great man is the philosopher of the categorical imperative, Immanuel Kant (1724-1804). And, of course, is our party the energetic guide Olga Danilovas invitation to climb all the way up in Kant museum tower to photograph the philosopher's death mask. Then we round it all off with a brilliant organ concert at the Cathedral Church. . Others that remain from the German time the grand but now right desolate and sparsely operate Bahnhof Süd, now Yuzhnly voksai which is the terminus for the train from Moscow and St. Petersburg. Moscow train runs only once a day and to St. Petersburg just a few times a week. And the trip requires both view and passports for even Russian, domestic travelers. Remote Trains depart incidentally, always according to Moscow time, while local trains is the time in Kaliningrad, which is the same as in Sweden. Köningsberg was severely bombed during the Second World War, the final phase so most - including the castle (which now excavations made by the cellar) - while, for example, Prussian coastal town of Rauschen, now Svetogorsk, one hours' bus ride from Kaliningrad remained undamaged. Here also is including amber mine Yantarnyy where annually 300 tons of amber extraction and 90 percent is exported. It is an important source of income for the Kaliningrad region, which is known as a financial free zone. Still others support themselves by working as subcontractors to the German BMW, South Korean Hynday and Kia, production and assembly of TVs for the Russian market, says Dimitrij at the Chamber of Commerce in Kaliningrad. The food industry is another important sector, with a particular boost in the wake of the EU's sanctions policy against the Putin regime's annexation of Crimea and shrunk among others the Finnish food exports to Russia. The average income of a worker in the Kaliningrad region is around 20 000 to 25 000 rubles (just over 4, 000) and in which one pays 13 percent of a straight, flat tax. This applies, for example, even those who process the amber jewelry of various kinds. Working hours are 40 hours and when they retire they get out about half his previous salary in retirement. Here, near the area where the amber is extracted is a memorial to the Nazi brutality, on January 31st 1945, when slightly fatigued thousands of Jewish men, women and children were driven in Palmniken into the sea and were gunned down by the Germans. A heartbreaking monument of outstretched arms and hands at the beach demonstrate. UNESCO World Heritage Site, the närkliga Curonian Spit, which is shared between Russian Kaliningrad region and Lithuania, is also frequently visited. Not least because of ornithologists and other nature lovers. So despite Iskander missiles and other's Kaliningrad enclave, where between Poland and Lithuania worth visiting. Robert Björkenwall, Stockholm


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