Oct 23, 2009

Who Owns the AK-47?

After years of neglect, Russia and China have finally agreed to answer one of the most divisive issues in their bilateral relations: copyright protection for the AK-47.
"There are about 100 million Kalashnikov assault rifles worldwide, of which half are counterfeit," said Anatoly Isaikin of Rosoboronexport...Production of Kalashnikovs outside Russia had [cost] financial losses and tarnished the brand because of their poor quality."

However, this assumes that counterfeit = bad.

In fact, Bulgaria continues to flood Iraq and Afghanistan with an illegal "open source copy" of the AK-47 that is of better quality and lower cost than the Russian-made brand. If anything, the Bulgarians are doing Rosoboronexport a favor.

And even though Russia contends that Bulgaria's license expired with the Warsaw Pact, Soveit-era bureaucrats overlooked the legal ramifactions of Communism's collapse and failed to insert a sunset clause into the agreement.

Didn't you know, comrade? Contracts are the daggers of the bourgeoisie.

Speaking of which, Mikhail Kalashnikov is still alive. He is 89 years old, lives in a modest home in Izhevsk, and has yet to see a penny from his invention.

No profits, no ownership, just workers in a Workers’ State!

3 comments:

Dmitri Minaev said...

> He is 89 years old, lives in a modest home in Izhevsk, and has yet to see a penny from his invention. No profits, no ownership, just workers in a Workers’ State!

Sorry, but this part (except for the age) requires some more research :). He's not a millionaire, but not a poor man living on water and bread, either. Have you seen the list of his awards? Besides being lieutenant general of the Russian army and a doctor of technical sciences, he is the owner of the Kalashnikov brand (knives, umbrellas and vodka).

On the other hand, he gets no royalties for the rifle, you're right here.

Pirates(and)Diplomats said...

Yes indeed. In fact, that's why I stressed that he lived in a modest home, but hasn't seen a penny.

But, we should really do a post on Kalashnikov vodka.

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