- Allistair Mitchell
Tales from the Edict 34 - The Russian Storm Breaks
Updated: Apr 30, 2021
Russia and its allies had seen improving days before the financial crisis of 2030. On the back of the pandemic, Russia had made new allies and mollified old adversaries when its Sputnik vaccine proved both effective at preventing the virus and a cost-effective solution once the initial panic passed and accountants looked at the situation. Private commercial vaccines had stolen money from countries that could ill afford it and once the crisis was in hand the Russian vaccine together with the Oxford vaccine became the purchase of choice for countries everywhere who no longer worried about adverse public reaction to penny pinching. Annual vaccines became the norm and the low-cost ones found favour. Even when the competition lowered their prices it only highlighted the extent to which society had been gouged by rapacious scientists and companies.
For Russia, many bridges were rebuilt or strengthened in the aftermath of the crypto collapse. Russia, in her isolation, had fared better than most having delivered the people from the pandemic (or at least those who would accept what science had made available). Many perished but in a state with little welfare the burden was light. For those who survived, there was proof that the leadership had worked for them. And when the crypto currencies triggered the worldwide depression it was the lack of sophistication within the wider Russian population that prevented them from investing in the crypto-market. Bitcoin lived and died beyond the borders of Russia for most people. Of those that did suffer, well, most would shrug and say they had it coming.
Vladimir Putin recast his reputation with his decision to run the Russian space agency. He had pledged himself to the glory of Russia and was loved by the people and admired abroad for his act of selflessness in putting huge funds into the space industry he now controlled. He initiated investment into Roscosmos and helped stem the worst of the depression. Thousands were kept in employment or taken on to continue the development work on the West Russian spaceport and its infrastructure. Everywhere he was lauded, not least for contracts with international engineering firms, in particular Germany and Italy, as well as at home. These investments were hard bargains but nonetheless helped in the European recovery in the aftermath of the failed euro. In truth no country was capable of hostilities, collectively societies were on their knees.
The 2024 contract by Russia for the sale of old rocket technology to a UAE led consortium came to an end in 2028 and the entire manufacturing workshop and assembly line were dismantled and shipped to Kazakhstan. As well as bringing desperately needed revenue to Russia at a time when valuable contracts were scarce, the central government divested themselves of responsibility for space activity by allowing former president Putin to take over Roscosmos, merging it with his own enterprise in 2028.
Having success with the Yenisei launch system, the opening of the Penza cosmodrome and Budushcheye (Eng. meaning, Future), (the first Russian Orbital Station since Mir in 2001), as well as the Venus orbital platform Venera-D, Putin’s private corporation was now Russia’s premier space organisation. Christened the Kremlin Collective, it became a beacon of achievement for the nation, and Russia could now take a much more conciliatory tone and approach to international relations. The former President, now being reliant on partnerships in space to offer mutual assistance, was reconciled with his wealth and his responsibility on a global stage.
Russia continued to bask in the success of the Kremlin Collective throughout the 2030’s. No matter how the organisation achieved its goals, it was the darling of the people. But those who did business with the KC spoke of hard deals and difficult relations. Something of the old Putin still persisted when it came getting what he wanted.