Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Inside The Russian Factory That Made Sochi's Cursed Olympic Torches

Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a lit Olympic torch during a ceremony to mark the start of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic torch relay in Moscow on October 6.
Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a lit Olympic torch during a ceremony to mark the start of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic torch relay in Moscow on October 6.
Russians are so far finding humor in the Sochi 2014 Olympic torchbearers' early travails, as videos proliferate of repeated flameouts since the torch relay began two days ago in Moscow.

In one video, someone calls out "sponsored by Gazprom" as officials take more than a minute to get the torch relit.

Elsewhere, a commenter on cites torches from the last Olympics that Russia hosted, the Summer Games in Moscow, saying, "They should have used the good Soviet ones from 1980."

The first flickering-out came at the gates of the Kremlin and seemed loaded with irony, given strident criticism ahead of these Olympics over human rights issues.

The second, third, and fourth occurrences, on the other hand, suggest that the torches are likely to burn out frequently over the next 65,000 kilometers of what's scheduled to be the longest Olympic torch relay in history.

They also might encourage spectators along the relay route to bring cigarette lighters -- just in case. Lighter manufacturer Zippo pokes fun at the Russian miscue on its Facebook page and through a #ZippoSavesOlympics Twitter hashtag.

The Krasnoyarsk factory that made the feather-shaped, red-and-silver torches for the Sochi Olympics is bound to face some tough questioning.

In the meantime, here's a Reuters video tour of that factory, including the detail that the facility also "produces ballistic rockets for submarines" and other rocket parts.

At one point in the video Viktor Filippov, who is identified as the factory's deputy chief engineer, says: "It's an overstatement to say it can keep the flame burning anywhere, but it can do that in the given temperature range."

Watch for yourself:
Russian Factory Producing 14,000 Olympic Torchesi
|| 0:00:00
August 13, 2013
A factory in Krasnoyarsk is manufacturing 14,000 Olympic torches ahead of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, which will kick off with the longest-ever Olympic torch relay. The factory has previously produced rocket parts for space launches. (Reuters)

After the first incident, on October 6, Sochi Organizing Committee President Dmitry Chernyshenko appeared to stand by the manufacturer.

Chernyshenko insisted on Twitter that "the torches were tested in all possible ways and reliable burning will be guaranteed in any wind," according to (The tweet appears to have since been removed, as it doesn't appear on his Russian-language Twitter feed.)

Since then, however, Chernyshenko has maintained Twitter silence on the topic.

-- RFE/RL Central Newsroom
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Ivanushka The Fool from: Mother Russia
October 08, 2013 19:01
Who made the bloody torches??? well,its obvious Eugenio from Vienna did them with a lil help from Jackass Jackie from the US of A..Constantin from LA also makes torches,but they dont burn at all,instead they burn the man who carries them,Vakhtang from Moscow also tried to make one and now he is in hospital with multiple burns and top Moscow veterinarians are fighting for his life!!! Now gimme some fire water!!!
In Response

by: Konstantin from: Los Angeles
October 09, 2013 03:38
"Ivanushka The Fool" is not a "your fool". In Russian tales,
As in real life, he is the greatest Russian hero, making fools
Out of taking for a fool him, the fooling around Russian hool,
The hooligan-Neanderthal even his "Mother Russia" hates,
But tolerate, be called "Roditha", as Marry - "Bogo-roditca".

Ivan is right, the torches are bloody like in Nazi Germany,
To make torch-marches, thousands of villages and towns,
As call for finishing great pogrom and the whole ceremony,
Annexation and cleansing in North Georgia and Caucasus,
Calling conquest of whole Euro-Asia for breeding Russians.

Ivan is fooling around with it and making a Russian Eugenio
Look like he is against Russia conquer and burning Torches.
Help brother from "Union of Russian People" - your "Borgio"?
Help under-"Borgio" Jack, thought he isn't a Russian butcher?
True, Ivan, I am against the burning torches - Nazi pogromers.

As for Vakhtang, he is to close to the torches, getting burned.
One can't hide in belly of an octopus from suckers undigested.
Even he would support all Russia did and do, he must of learn
That even Vakhtang and his son Peter The Great, be detested
By Russia race of strangers. Peter built Russia to be poisoned.
In Response

by: Zxiad Ghamsakhurdia from: burning `ell
October 09, 2013 15:17
What is Greater than Koba,Zviad Gh,and the necktie-eater combined-well it can be only the `man`,pardon the St.Georgian from LA,giving us another excellent crash course in psychopathology!!!
In Response

by: Konstantin from: Los Angeles
October 10, 2013 03:20
Not Zxiad but Zviad, unless, another Ivan playing fool,
Intended by it some smart move of Viking-Varangas,
Turn against each other a few ethnographic pools,
Or Russia's love of "X..", as "prophecy" of Vanda.

Some, born be impudent - grabbing for greatness,
Would plagiarize-usurp and kill in infamy the best.
Some, born be anything they want, nailed to cross,
Want like everybody else a family and a little Crest.

But they denied it, thus being obligated to Heavens
And Humanity - defend priorities from the impudent,
Might create - not be plagiarized like Seven-Eleven,
Or forced by history - be blamed by Ivan be "Great".

O pure Koba! O pure Zviad! O not so pure Saakas!
Who, but Varanga-Prussaka, is to be remembered.
All others will get Columbian neck-tie, from Russia,
And even their names be chiseled out of all papers.

You right in one - psychopathology describes psychos...

by: Anonymous
October 08, 2013 19:14
al this
will change everithing !

by: Konstantin from: Los Angeles
October 09, 2013 03:46
God will put end to burning torches Russia, preparing
For another expansion into Euro-Asia and celebrating
Annexation in Georgia North and Sochi and cleansing
Caucasus. Remember Petrozavodsk warning in 1969.

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at

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