Cat – Bread – Gun – Grozny

Cat – bread – gun – Grozny is a “rather chilling photo with a cat in it” (Marc).

This is, indeed, a chilling photo. It is a great photo that is hidden away on Wikipedia. The photographer is Mikhail Evstafiev (Mikhail appears to be Finnish) – the link takes you to the Wikipedia image. He titles the photo: A Chechen man picks up a loaf of bread in Grozny. In Finnish he calls it: Tšetšeenimies hakee leipää Groznyissa.

With the introduction out of the way, here is the picture:

Cat bread gun chechen republic

Cat – bread – gun – Grozny – Chechnya

What does it say? Does it talk to you? For me it neatly encapsulates the cat in the human world, which appears to be becoming increasingly violent and dysfunctional. The cat is passive and accepting, forced as he is to remain in the human world that, for him, is far from ideal as evidenced by the Chechen man who a carries a gun for protection while shopping for bread.

The shop looks very sparse by Western standards. The man carries his gun openly. Chechnya is going through the Second Chechen War. It kicked off with a desire to be independent of Russia. The claim for independence was instigated by the Islamic International Brigade (IIPB), which was crushed by Russian forces.

Chechnya continues to be a federal subject of Russia, just as Putin likes it. The Russians like their cats. They have a fairly active cat fancy and some very keen cat breeders.

Looking at this orange bicolor cat, which appears to have no real home, life in Chechnya is not ideal for a domestic cat. Islam is the major religion in Chechnya. That should serve the domestic cats well because Muslims are meant to treat cats nicely. However, it seems highly unlikely that it happens under these circumstances created by people.

Update: I have just learned that the Boston marathon bombers were Chechen Muslims – two brothers. One has been shot dead by police in a chase. The other is on the run (18:15 19th April 2013 GMT)

Note: I’d like to thank Marc for discovering the picture and notifying me.

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Cat – Bread – Gun – Grozny — 5 Comments

  1. Very eerie, considering the nationality of the Boston ‘Marathon Bombers’. They did catch the kid that was on the loose. The neighborhood cheered as the SWAT team put their gear away. It was very moving.

    The cat in this photo looks healthy. I always look for face sores and scrapes. His ruff is either tan or dirty. It’s sad that the world is like that there, but the deserve freedom. I think the cat’s calm reaction proves that there are not any hostile feelings coming from the gun barer here. Otherwise, I think he wouldn’t be so docile. Heck, he’d probably get the heck out of there.

    BTW: My laptop died last weekend. I worked all week to get it up and running. The new operating system doesn’t support the function keys, so I can’t turn off the very sensitive touch pad. If you put any weight on the front of the laptop while typing strange things happen. So, I will be around a bit less until we get it worked out. I accidentally clicked an illicit Banner Ad that are all over Facebook. They have been there for two months and Facebook cannot get rid of them. It took the system down quickly. Very frustrating.

    So is that a homeless cat? Is it dirty? What do you think everyone?

  2. The cat looks quite at home there and unafraid. although he has a world weary look in his eyes and his fur looks a bit unkempt.

    • I agree – he has a look of sadness and exhaustion. It’s sad. I’m sure people are nice to them, especially because in war things are so different. I would imagine they really appreciate animals and try not to hurt them for the most part.

    • I am almost certain that most cats in Chechnya are like this cat: community cats with no real, single home. Just a socialised stray cat. He probably live outdoors most of the time.

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