Communist Party Leader in Dress Code Faux Pas at Stalin's Grave
Published: May 20, 2014 (Issue # 1810)
Russian Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov caused a stir on the Russian blogosphere for laying flowers at the grave of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin while wearing an Adidas tracksuit jacket.
A Twitter user who registered under the name "Josef Stalin" quipped: "Zyuganov showed up in an Adidas tracksuit top, a white shirt and dress shoes. [I'd have had him] shot for this outfit!"
Zyuganov made the dress code blunder on Sunday at a ceremony on Red Square to mark the 92nd anniversary of the establishment of the pioneers, a Soviet-era Communist youth organization.
He told the Russian News Service radio station that he wore it because "nobody makes good tracksuits yet in our country." He did not specify why he had to wear a tracksuit jacket at all, but perhaps it was its red color that made the Communist leader warm to the garb.
His gaffe may have caught people's attention because Adidas goods symbolized capitalist swank for many Soviet people under the Communist regime.
Zyuganov said that the German firm now makes uniforms for the Communist Party's football team, however.
"I was wearing our team's uniform," Zyuganov was quoted as saying.
"They buy what is available in stores. I don't have any [advertising] agreements with Adidas," he added, according to Russian News Service.
Some users of Russian social networks suggested that instead of a bow to the capitalism, the political system that won the Cold War, Zyuganov's dress choice was a sign of solidarity with another Communist regime.
"Calm down: This is [made in] China," a Twitter user said.