A recording has surfaced online purporting to be a leaked conversation between two Russian ambassadors discussing which parts of the world they would like to annex after Crimea.
The five-minute recording, laden with expletives, has been posted on YouTube and claims to be a telephone call between Igor Chubarov,Russia‘s ambassador to Eritrea, and Sergei Bakharev, the ambassador to Zimbabwe and Malawi. It has not been authenticated.
“We’ve got Crimea, but that’s not fucking all folks. In the future we’ll damn well take your Catalonia and Venice, and also Scotland and Alaska,” says the voice labelled as Chubarov, interspersing his speech with laughter and punning the word for Scotland in Russian so it sounds like “Cattleland”.
After this, Chubarov says Russia will make a move for “all those fucking border countries”, such as Estonia, as well as Romania and Bulgaria. He adds that the head of the EU mission to Eritrea had jokily said in a recent conversation that he wished Russia would “take back” Romania and Bulgaria.
In the end, the ambassadors concur that it is probably better to leave Bulgaria, Romania and the “Baltic shit” in the EU for now, and Bakharev says it would be more interesting to go for California or Miami.
“Exactly, ‘Miamiland’ is fucking 95% Russian citizens,” says Chubarov. “We have a full right to hold a referendum.” Bakharev concurs and suggests holding one in “Londonland” as well, to jovial laughter.
Chubarov congratulates Bakharev on the fact that Zimbabwe was one of only 11 countries, along with Syria and North Korea, to back Russia at the UN over its annexation of Crimea. There is also consternation that the “bastards” from Malawi did not support Moscow.
It is possible that the leaking of the recording is revenge for the recent spate of high-profile leaks of western diplomatic discussions over Ukraine. A call between the US assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland and the US ambassador in Kiev was leaked, in which Nuland discussed strategy advice for the leaders of the Ukrainian protest movement, as well as stating “fuck the EU” in reference to differences over Ukraine policy. Nuland as good as confirmed the authenticity of the recording, claiming that “the tradecraft is really quite impressive”.