As reported in the Moscow Times two days ago, the Romanov’s are returning to Russia. It’s something we wrote about last year but is finally coming to fruition.
They’re not coming back to take over the government and return the capital to Санкт-Петербург (Saint Petersburg). No, members of the Romanov royal family plan to return to Russia to help develop civil society and charitable programs. And according to Alexander Zakatov the director of the Romanov Emperor House Chancery, they have no plans to make a claim to restore the monarchy.
Not that a restored monarchy, much in the way of the United Kingdom for example, would be a bad idea. He went on to say that “coming to its native land, working in cultural, charitable and other nonpolitical programs for Russia’s benefit — that is what the house (of Romanov) is able and indebted to do.”
Zakatov represents Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna and members of her family, who live in Madrid, the city where she and her son Georgy Mikhailovich were born. Her family members are relatives of Russia’s last tsar, Nicholas II, and they fled to Finland during the 1917 Revolution.
In October 2008, the Supreme Court declared Nicholas II and his family to be victims of political repression. Nicholas II abdicated the throne in March 1917, and he, his wife and their five children were executed by Bolshevik soldiers in the basement of a merchant house in Yekaterinburg in 1918.
While most contemporary Romanovs live in Western Europe, the chancellery has an office in Moscow as a nongovernmental organization. As the Mendeleyev Report wrote in October 2008, Restoration of the dynasty has been whispered about in quiet Kremlin hallway conversations for some time. But no one really takes these things too seriously. However one well known Russian journalist/writer shared privately his hunch that Mr. Putin might be using the rehabilitation of the royal family as a basis for eventual restoration of the Russian Empire.
By replacing the current Russian Federation Constitution with one that restores some form of monarchy, the Kremlin could continue the bolstering of Russian pride and culture while at the same time issuing a call to former Russian nations/republics to rejoin the Federation.
Given that Russia was governed in tandem with the Tsar’s, and the Russian Orthodox Church providing political stability along the way, perhaps the first step was the accomplishment of the family of Tsar Nicholas II as minor saints back in 2000.
The second step to such a plan would be rehabilitation of the Romanov name–and that officially began in 2008. Naturally any political restoration would come with the understanding that a Romanov dynasty be willing to accept some form of very limited (figurehead) power and the government would be run by the current set of Kremlin leaders.
Imagine the national prestige of having a Romanov in a figurehead capacity, living in the imperial city of Saint Petersburg in one of the Winter palaces or even at the summer residence in the palaces of Tsarskoe Selo.
No matter what is planned inside the secretive hallways of the Kremlin, the most important event is the one which should come next, according to Edvard Radzinsky, a Russian historian and the author of “The Last Tsar: The Life and Death of Nicholas II.”
Mr. Radzinsky points out that “We have two graves that symbolize the revolution: the dirty hole into which the royal family were thrown, and the mausoleum of the one who ordered this,” he said, referring to Lenin’s brick pyramid on Red Square.
“The closing of the first grave,” he said, “should lead to the closing of the second.”
We can only agree.