It’s Time to Come Home

It’s Time to Come Home

John Kopiski is a British-born business executive who came to Moscow for a 3-day business trip and ended up staying for more than 20 years.

“I arrived here in December 1991. I went to some import-export companies, two bars, a hotel and Old Arbat (a street in central Moscow). And in this brief period I felt that I could start a new life here. Not a new business, a new life,” John Kopiski said.

Mr. Kopiski became the second British citizen to obtain Russian citizenship in 1993. He became an Orthodox shortly after. See more here.

19 thoughts on “It’s Time to Come Home

  1. Well, I say to this, “Some people are welcome in Russia, while others are not.” And I have an idea that I would not be welcome especially seeing as how I have read up on how Africans who move to Russia are ill-treated and that is putting it mildly and though I am an American, I still have a permanent tan and so quite obviously, I would not be subject to the same treatment this British businessman received.

      1. First they spat angry words at Remy Bazie. Then they struck him in the face with an iron bar, knocking him unconscious..

        The men who jumped the Ivory Coast migrant at a crowded Moscow train station last November did not rob him. But they damaged his jaw to the degree that doctors had to install a metal plate to hold it in place. It took Bazie four months to raise the $3,600 to undergo surgery.

        Africans in Russia: In the Nov. 2 Section A, an article about hostility against African blacks in Russia said there had been 177 reported acts of violence against blacks in Russia since 2010, according to the SOVA Center for Information and Analysis. There were actually 177 reported violent acts against blacks since 2008, SOVA officials say, six of which ended in death.

        “Most of the time I’m harassed, but this was the worst experience,” Bazie, 28, said recently as he sat at a parish community center in Moscow where African migrants often seek refuge.

        His story is not uncommon, Russian civil and human rights leaders say. African migrants face widespread hostility and racism that usually go unpunished.

        Now, again, this was taken from an article here:

        The title says it all! “African migrants in Russia describe ‘hell on earth!’.

        And I do believe that even if I had loads of money, who would know that or even care about that if I was just walking down the street? I’d still get what these migrants got because of my ethnicity. I am not saying that America has no faults, but we ALL know that the pale skin is much more accepted in your neck of the woods than my skin tone is. Do I have my problems here in America? Indeed, I do. But the fact of the matter is that I now live at ground zero for hate groups and not only that, but I was born in the South and at least I have not experienced anything like those people who migrated from Africa to Russia.

    1. Eastern Europe generally does not welcome people of colour: history – but it helps that his gentleman had heaps of money, huh? Same old everywhere. I don’t think penniless African immigrants or refugees are that welcome in the States either, nor are they any better treated. Racism is endemic to the human race, to its everlasting shame!

      1. I’m not sure how this post turned into a racism article but people of color aren’t not excepted here but everyone here is tolerant of others regardless of color.

      2. Sha-Tara, many African immigrants are indeed, welcomed to the United States. Somali migrants have been coming here for decades and many of them have settled in Minnesota. Now, I just recently moved from Minnesota and so I can speak knowledgeably on this, Somalis have opened their own malls, their own health care facilities, their own restaurants and grocery stores and so they are doing extremely well. They are doing better than those of us who are descendants of people who were dragged here because the government gives them everything; meaning, our tax dollars.

        For some strange reason, America treats refugees or migrants much better than those of us who are born here and that is a fact. Even the Koreans, Pakistanis and the Indians are given grants to open up liquor stores, convenience stores and the like and they don’t have to pay taxes for at least 5 years and immigrants qualify for free health care while myself and other Americans are paying out the wazoo for insurance or if not, we go without. So, it is quite actually better to come here from some other place than to be born here and be considered, a minority. Why do you think that those who are here on H1B visas have overstayed their visas? They’ve got it too good to want to leave.

    1. Leslie, I posted a comment to Shelby Courtland about this issue. Please take a look. It’s hard for blacks here but I doubt it’s much different elsewhere. By the way Pushkin has African roots.

  2. Thank you for you response to this, Steve. The world is becoming so multinational now. I do think that Mr. Kopiski probably has some roots in Russia and would tend to fit in more easily.

  3. There are many such wonderful stories about people moving to Russia. People do not need to look very far to find their Russian roots. Between 1880-1925 millions of Russians moved to Canada and the United States. Those families remain the backbone of the agricultural industry in western Canada. It is erroneous to believe it requires boat loads of money to move. For those under 45 leave your western thinking and become a part of the Russian culture. Steve has plenty of information for you to read here. There is a special feeling my heart sends to me when I hear about Russia.

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