Is the Kremlin planning to restore the Monarchy in Russia?
Russia is positively buzzing with news about the Romanovs!
The upcoming 400 years anniversary of the House combined with the unusually high level of activity of the members of the Romanov family, have resulted in a significant increase of coverage of Family.
While the members of the Romanov Family discuss who is going to be the main representative of the Family during the celebrations, Russians are trying to understand what their role could be for the country.
According to Alexander Belov, former leader of MAII (Movement against Illegal Immigration), the perspective of the return of the Romanovs must be viewed favourably: “I’ve met with several members of the Family and I think they’d be quite useful for the country. They are pleasant and intelligent, even the language they speak isn’t quite the contemporary Russian: it is the language of Turgenev, Pushkin and Goncharov. Modern Russian ‘elite’ could learn a thing or two from them. All in all, I don’t know a single person among the current Romanovs, who could harm Russia in any way.”
Belov noted that the advantages of the possible return of the Romanovs are far more than drawbacks: “If the Family gets transport, buildings and security, it is not exactly going to be a drain on the country’s budget. I also think that the Romanovs should be given back at least some part of the properties Soviet Government confiscated.” Belov went as far as predict actual restoration of the Monarchy and discussed the advantages of the possible event: “In Western Europe, existing Royal Families help strengthening cultural and social ties, support charities, represent the country at the appropriate occasions: they aren’t doing any damage but tons of good. As a matter of fact, the Kremlin Administration is currently considering Restoration of the Monarchy (constitutional Monarchy), akin to the British model, when the Monarch would be Head of the State and important symbol, while the actual Governing will be done by the Prime Minister. The plan is still in works: among other things, its execution depends on the compliance of the Romanovs to participate in it.”
The possibility of return of the Romanovs has been actively discussed ever since Maria Vladimirovna’s representative announced (in June 2009) that the Imperial Family is set to return to Russia. The issue is not of the physical return of the Romanov Family members but return of the Institution, which would include a recogniztion by the Russian Government and, most probably, also some sort of a “special status.”
Not all Romanovs agree with this announcement though: on July 28, Prince Dimitri Romanov made and official statement, where he downplayed Maria Vladimirovna’s announcement as that of a “private person”, who is not authorized to make announcements on behalf of the Romanov Family. The Prince also added that should the Romanovs return to Russia, they wouold not expect any special treatment by the Russian Government or seek any ‘official satus’. Prince Dimitri is the brother and heir to the prerogatives of Nicholas Romanov, Prince of Russia (a claimant to Headship of the Imperial House of Russia and Head of the Romanov Family Association). The announcement he made was on behalf of all members of the Romanov Family (excluding Maria Vladimirovna and her son).
In the same announcement, Prince Dimitri declared once again that the Romanov Family Association and members of the Romanov Family do not recognize Maria Vladimirovna (or her son) as Heir to the Throne or Head of the Imperial Family, and deny her any authority to speak on behalf of the Romanov Family. He also added that Maria Vladimirovna or her son are not even member of the Romanov family, but belong to the House of Hohenzollern.
Maria Vladimirovna’s representatives were quick to respond that the view of the Romanov Family Association is wrong and that Maria Vladimirovna is the real Head of the Family.
It should be reminded that Maria Vladimirovna believes that the entire Imperial Family consists of her, her son Prince George Mikhailovich and her mother, Princess Leonida.
All other members of the Romanov family recognize Prince Nicholas as the Head of the Family.
Meanwhile, the reaction of the possible restoration of the Monarchy among ordinary Russian people (as posted in different blogs) was very mixed. Most seem to find the very idea of restoration ridiculous, while others ask what precisely have the Romanovs done for Russia to want their return. The majority also questions the relevance of the current members of the Romanov Family, who were born and brought up abroad, for Russia. Those who considered the issue seriously, point out that there simply is no candidate among the Romanovs that will meet all the criteria of the Imperial succession Laws: most members are disqualified because of their morganatic marriages or Paul I Law.
If Kremlin’s plans of Restoration depend on cooperation between Romanovs, the prospect of restoration looks very glum indeed: it looks virtually impossible to find a candidate that will be acceptable for all sides, not to mention the people.Filed under Russian Royals
Tagged Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia, Prince Dimitri Romanovich, Prince Nicholas Romanovich, Restoration, Romanov Family Association.