Real, shoe-leather journalism
This article originally appeared in The Moscow Times
A senior Russian politician has responded to British criticism over Moscow's annexation of Crimea by suggesting London should "Have a break, Have a Twix," in a seemingly unintentional mash-up of chocolate marketing slogans.
Alexei Pushkov, the head of the Duma's Foreign Affairs Committee, on Sunday reacted to an onlinestatement by Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, in which the British politician denounced the annexation of Crimea by Russia in March last year as "illegal and illegitimate."
"London should have a break, have a Twix," Pushkov said Sunday on Twitter. "All the Western polls conducted in Crimea show the absolute majority of Crimean people are for reunification with Russia."
Pushkov, however, appeared to have confused his chocolate bars. It was in fact the makers of chocolate bar Kit Kat that coined the famous catchphrase: "Have a Break, Have a Kit Kat" as far back as 1958.
Twix, on the other hand, has been marketing its twin chocolate bars under the slogan: "Try both, and pick a side" — something both Pushkov and Hammond seem to have done already.
Pushkov also took the opportunity on Sunday to lash out at Britain for its own past.
"Note to London: Crimea has immeasurably more reason to be part of Russia than the Falkland Islands do to be part of Great Britain," he wrote.
The Falklands, located in the South Atlantic ocean, have remained under British rule since 1833, despite protestations from nearby Argentina, which also lays claim to the islands. A brief war was fought over the territory in 1982, resulting in the loss of about 900 lives.
Russia annexed Crimea last March after a hastily arranged referendum on the peninsula in which roughly 96 percent of Crimeans voted in favor of secession from Ukraine.
A referendum held on the Falkland Islands in March 2013 showed that 99.8 percent of residents wanted to remain a part of Britain.