Russia

Russian Opposition Fearful Following Nemtsov Killing, but Rally Anyway

Thousands come out to protest.

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Dumping your vodka in the gutter won't fix this.

Tens of thousands came out in Moscow Sunday to mourn the assassination of opposition activist Boris Nemtsov, killed late Friday night. The march had already been planned as a protest. One assumes it still served this purpose, tinged with grief. Here's how The Washington Post described the mood at the rally:

But although the numbers appeared to rival some of the largest protests during a wave of opposition rallies three years ago, few retained their old hopes for change. Instead, many said they felt more vulnerable than ever after a year in which intimidating and fervent support for Putin following the annexation of Crimea carried an implicit threat against those who disagree.

Those who braved Sunday's gloomy weather said that the Friday night slaying was a frightening sign that people who disagree with Russia's aggressive mainstream risk their lives for saying so publicly. Many said they were now cautious about what they shared with their colleagues or published on social media.

"They really want to instigate fear. And they have been partially successful at doing that," said Vladimir Milov, a politician who had worked with Nemtsov in recent weeks to organize an opposition rally that transformed into memorial after the murder late Friday night. Milov said that many Kremlin critics were now thinking about leaving Russia, convinced that killers would soon come for them, too.

Newsweek has posted what it is calling a final interview with Nemtsov. It's not clear whether this is actually the last interview by Nemtsov before the assassination, but the writer says the interview took place just a "few hours" before he was gunned down in Moscow. Here's how Nemtsov described the type of fascism developing under Vladimir Putin there:

Someone once said that the future fascists will be ardent anti-fascists. Fascism in Ukraine? Nonsense! Let's look at Russia. We have one party built on the cult of a leader, plus some irrelevant satellite parties. Every few years there is a pathetic parody of an election. We have a chauvinistic and aggressive foreign policy, a reheating of imperial complexes, the militarization of society. These are the characteristics of a fascist regime, aren't they? But Putin is not a fascist. He just cynically uses some elements of the past, mixes them with others—for example with Soviet traditions—and the hybrid is born, the contemporary hybrid fascism. It's like the war in Ukraine. The war is going on, Russian soldiers are there, but the Kremlin denies it and pretends [the government] has nothing to do with these tanks and regiments in Donetsk. The same is true of fascism—it exists in Russia, but the authorities say that we are fighting the fascism in Ukraine. If we do not stop this madness, the consequences for all of us will be devastating.

Read the full interview here. What actually happened to Nemtsov is still under investigation, but the state-controlled media is already in full swing, focusing on how the West hates Russia and how they'll use this death to further attempt to punish the country and its citizens.

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  1. We have one party built on the cult of a leader, plus some irrelevant satellite parties.

    You know who else…?

    1. North Korea?

    2. Venezuela?

    3. California?

    4. Is my son pledging allegiance to them right now?

          1. Also, evidence that Loki the Trickster is the one, true God, within a year, the Obamaphone lady became an Alex Jones devotee.

            Either that, or Obama is so incompetent that he can even fuck up his own cult of personality.

            I’ll bet six of one and half-a-dozen of the other.

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    1. This was covered in the AM Links. Get with the program, anon bot.

  3. Obama must laugh at Putin having to resort to such vulgar means for disposing of his enemies. In America Obama just has his media operatives run his opponents out of public life.

    1. I think you may be incorrect. Obumbles has already expressed a wish to govern in a more totalitarian manner. He is jealous of Putin.

      1. He’s already said it’s easier to govern in China. I don’t think Putin is leftist enough for Obama. Obama’s probably more jealous of Maduro, Castro, and Kim Jong Un.

        1. I’m to the point where it looks to me like the Chinese system has more accountability.

          They are purging the fuck out of a bunch of their crony crooks right now. Sure, its because they lost a power struggle, but still, imprisoning some of your crony crooks is better than not imprisoning any of your crony crooks.

          1. Obama does not engage in cronyism, or anything like that.

            Obama merry-go-round

    2. He also has the IRS, EPA, and assorted other good squads waiting to see who’s the next target.

    3. Tell that to James Rosen. Or, probably, Michael Hastings.

      1. Snowden would have made the list had he not have been smart enough to run away very quickly.

  4. ” state-controlled media is already in full swing, focusing on how the West hates Russia and how they’ll use this death to further attempt to punish the country and its citizens”

    Western media and politicians are not helping. Your average Russian can read about how “Western sanctions are destroying Russian economy” in any Western publication, not just Russia Today. So when he is pissed his food prices go up, he knows who to blame.

    When Hillary Clinton calls Putin Hitler, she reminds Russians about WWII, and not in a way she probably intended. When John McCain calls to arm Ukraine and ‘raise costs to Russia’, he is calling for killing of ethic Russians a few miles away from Russian border, for no particular strategic or tactical gains. And people then wonder why Putin’s approval ratings are at 86%?

    Western media and politicians are the best propaganda Putin could wish for.

    1. no particular strategic or tactical gains

      Well, other than stopping a Russian invasion of a sovereign country, and likely preventing more of the same.

      But other than that, yeah, its completely pointless.

      1. If you think Russia will back off in the face of US weaponry rather than escalate support for the rebels and destroy poor Ukrainian military even further, you haven’t been paying attention to the situation on the ground.

        Your proposal will lead to senseless death and catastrophic losses for Kiev government.

      2. But RC Dean, Ukraine has conscription, which is like worse than slavery. Plus the West has gravely offended peace-loving Russian people by admitting historically Russian territories such as Estonia and Poland into Nato. It’s all Amerika’s fault.

        Did I miss any points?

        1. Did I miss any points?

          Yes, the “it’s none of our business” point.

        2. Ukraine has conscription, which is like worse than slavery

          Um… conscription is slavery.

          Did I miss any points?

          Yes, you missed the part where Ukraine is jailing wartime dissenters and confiscating property for the war effort.

          1. conscription is slavery

            Most countries don’t have the luxury of moral preening with respect to conscription when they are invaded by a large, powerful neighbor, which obviously has conscription and assassinates wartime dissenters.

            I wonder if Finnish libertarians, if those creatures exist, are still outraged (that tyrant Lincoln!) that their country resorted to conscription during the Winter War instead of living happily thereafter in the Karelo-Finnish Soviet Socialist Republic.

            1. If you want to make that argument, then make it. Just don’t pretend you don’t believe your neighbor owes you his labor in some circumstances.

              1. If there was really a Russian invasion, there would be no need for conscription. Ukrainian men are fleeing to Romania and Russia to avoid the draft. Ukrainian women are speaking out in public with the conscription officers present even in Western Ukraine. Ukraine claims there is an invasion, but never produces the proof of same. Like the Iraqi army, they flee leaving heavy equipment to the insurgents. They even gave US senator photos from 2008 conflict in Georgia as proof of said invasion! We do not know who killed Nemstov, no longer a major opposition leader, trying a comeback, but one who made many enemies when he served under Yeltsin and in Ukraine.

                1. Ukraine claims there is an invasion, but never produces proof of same.

                  LOLWUT? So, like, all this video of Russia captured by CNN, Reuters, AP, BBC, etc…not proof, huh?

                  We do not know who killed Nemtsov

                  LOL, yeah. “Round up the usual suspects!”

              2. If there was really a Russian invasion, there would be no need for conscription. Ukrainian men are fleeing to Romania and Russia to avoid the draft. Ukrainian women are speaking out in public with the conscription officers present even in Western Ukraine. Ukraine claims there is an invasion, but never produces the proof of same. Like the Iraqi army, they flee leaving heavy equipment to the insurgents. They even gave US senator photos from 2008 conflict in Georgia as proof of said invasion! We do not know who killed Nemstov, no longer a major opposition leader, trying a comeback, but one who made many enemies when he served under Yeltsin and in Ukraine.

            2. Most countries don’t have the luxury of moral preening with respect to conscription

              Most countries in sub-saharan Africa don’t have the luxury of moral preening with respect to the ritual human sacrifice of Albinos when they are haunted by the evil spirits wrought upon them by neighboring tribes who obviously practice blood magic and sacrifice the innocent.

  5. When Hillary Clinton calls Putin Hitler

    Pot meet kettle.

    1. Sounds like something that would happen in a Sugarfree joint.

  6. Putin’s timing on assassinating political opposition was clearly a calculated move to make him seem more badass than his representation in House of Cards.

    1. NO SPOILERS

      1. Frank Underwood teams up with Danerys Targaryen to defeat the white walkers. It was AWESOME!

    2. I was going to post something like this. I blame Pussy Riot.

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    1. “I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student.”

      No, you are a full time anonybot.

  8. Many said they were now cautious about what they shared with their colleagues or published on social media.

    Just like old times!

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