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You mean they weren’t paying their respects?
The Malaya Zemlya Memorial is an austere and imposing reminder of the heroic sacrifices made by Russian forces in recapturing the city of Novorossiysk from the Nazis in the darkest days of World War II. It’s also a great background for a low-budget music video involving twerking.
But six young women recently discovered the downside of staging their performance at the historic site, after their wanton twerking captured the attention of the city’s mayor, who then launched an official investigation into this “hooliganism.”
The end result? Three dancers will serve up to 15 days in jail, two were fined, and the final participant (who was under the age of 16) earned her mother a reprimand for failing to “carry out measures to ensure the proper physical, intellectual, psychological, spiritual and moral development of the child.”
Still, the local dance school they were promoting has certainly made a name for itself.
“We condemn these women,” said Viktoriya Dikaya, the press secretary for Novorossiysk’s education department. “Every inch of this land is covered in blood. It is inappropriate.”
Other actions found to be inappropriate include smiling selfies, climbing on the memorial itself, giving dead soldiers the finger, and spitting on living veterans. If there’s one kind of historic event you don’t want to mess with, it’s war.
Miles Klee is a novelist and web culture reporter. The former editor of the Daily Dot’s Unclick section, Klee’s essays, satire, and fiction have appeared in Lapham’s Quarterly, Vanity Fair, 3:AM, Salon, the Awl, the New York Observer, the Millions, and the Village Voice. He's the author of two odd books of fiction, 'Ivyland' and 'True False.'