The Media Mirror - 02.08.07. What's new in today's Russian newspapers?

Most of Thursday's Russian newspapers react to the U.S. Senate resolution, which criticises the treatment Russia is giving the conventional arms situation in Europe.

The U.S. Senate is accusing Russia of unnecessarily escalating tensions in Europe and suggesting Russia should reconsider its actions, writes KOMMERSANT.

The same paper speaks of the efforts that General James Cartwright is putting into persuading President Bush not to prolong the START-1 treaty.

Cartwright speaks of conversion of strategic offensive nuclear weapons for the needs of counter-terrorism. In Russia the experts tend to dismiss the idea entirely and express fear that a really fast re-conversion is highly possible, in technical terms, and it would require only a change of heart in order to achieve that.

NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA has an article about the spread of Islam in the U.S. American Muslims are absolutely sure that they are going to save America from such ills of society as lack of spiritual life, drug abuse, crime, underage sex. They are comparing modern Americans to the Arabs of the VII Century who had all these sins rampant in their society and abandoned them as soon as Mohammed brought them Islam.

ROSSIYSKAYA GAZETA also talks about religion. The matters under discussion are teaching the basics of the Christian Orthodox faith in regular secondary schools.

On the one hand: Orthodoxy basics add much to the moral education which is not as strong as it should be in Russian schools; and opens the school door for the priest as a teacher and psychological instructor for the students.

On the other hand: Teaching the basics of just one religion in a multi-cultural environment of modern Russia means increasing ethnic tensions or even creating them where there have been none.

KRASNAYA ZVEZDA has a special issue totally dedicated to the Airborne Troops Day. The hero of the day is Vasily Margelov. He led the airborne personnel in the Victory Parade in 1945 as a combat-hardened colonel. He is the longest-serving Commander of the Airborne who ordered and introduced first airborne armoured vehicles, and designed the current uniform of the troops. General Margelov, or Uncle Vasya as they called him behind his back, never stopped working with his warriors in the field; he jumped and trained with them till his retirement day.

He was so much loved by his subordinates that for two decades Airborne troops were referred to as “Uncle Vasya's Corps”.