What IS that thing?
The glory hole in the ozone? The Portal Storm from Half-Life? An angelic version of Goatse*? Is it the Rapture? Where's Jesus and the trumpets of the heavenly hosts? And why is it happening in Russia? Aren't they godless communist no-goodniks?
So many questions.
Let's see what the Daily Mail has to say :
Talking to the Daily Mail, a spokesman from Moscow's weather forecasting service said: "Several fronts have been passing through Moscow recently, there was an intrusion of the Arctic air too, the sun was shining from the west - this is how the effect was produced.
"This is purely an optical effect, although it does look impressive," he added.
"If you look closer, you can see sun rays coming through that cloud. Most likely, the sun was setting when the video was being made.
"If you observe clouds regularly, you may see many other astonishing things. Clouds of the same class may look absolutely different in different areas," he said.
Actually, it looks like a Hole Punch Cloud:
Pic from neatorama
I agree that Nature creates wondrous spectacles all the time. Wired , for instance, has an article dealing with atmospheric phenomena that could easily be mistaken for, oh, I dunno - UFOs? They include these hauntingly-beautiful, surreal cloud formations**. Behold :
Kelvin-Helmholz wave clouds.
Morning Glory roll clouds.
Sure beats looking for animal shapes in the clouds, eh?
Pic from myamazingfact
Still, what is that stunningly-beautiful yet oddly-threatening spectacle over Moscow?
Hell if I know. All I know is that "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, that are dreamt of in your philosophy." ***
Just keep watching the skies.
* Goatse: You don't wanna know.
**Photo credits in Wired article.
***Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 5.