Russia’s Deep State wants a sell-out to NATOFri 12:46 pm +01:00, 21 Apr 2023
Fear & loathing on the home front
Angry patriots, oligarch in-fighting, and a deluge of “security” measures
It’s been an eventful week in Russia.
In chronological order:
Prigozhin says war is being sabotaged by Russia’s Deep State
Wagner CEO Yevgeny Prigozhin published an article on April 14 in which he made the following claims:
To summarize: An oligarch who is spearheading Russia’s only discernable offensive in Ukraine says the war will continue for the foreseeable future, even if/when Bakhmut is captured. Meanwhile, a powerful group of oligarchs and bureaucrats want to negotiate a backdoor deal with Washington that would have disastrous consequences for Russia.
Shocking and outrageous claims? Only if you’ve been getting your “war updates” from YouTube.
Strelkov’s “angry patriots” release manifesto
Igor Strelkov’s Club of Angry Patriots published a manifesto on April 17. A few highlights:
Notably, Strelkov and Prigozhin, who don’t particularly like each other (if you are familiar with their colorful history), are basically saying the exact same thing.
Immortal Regiment canceled nationwide; May Day marches scaled back; a general crackdown on unruly proles
Russia’s Supreme Court ruled on April 18 that writing unflattering things on the internet about Russian government officials is a felony punishable with a fine of up to 40,000 rubles, community service for up to 360 hours, or “corrective labor” for up to one year.
On the same day, it was announced that the “Immortal Regiment”—a procession on Victory Day when Russians honor their relatives who fought in the Great Patriotic War—would be canceled nationwide.
Also on April 18: St. Petersburg canceled its May Day march, citing “COVID restrictions”—joining the growing list of regions that have zapped Pervoye Maya festivities due to alleged Virus and/or security concerns.
We hate to point out the elephant in the room, but how can Russia be fighting to “denazify” Ukraine while depriving its citizens the right to honor their relatives who …. fought the Nazis?
How is it that the residents of St. Petersburg go about their daily lives without any meaningful “epidemiological” restrictions, but for some reason aren’t allowed to walk down the street carrying signs that read “Peace! Labor! May!”—because of “coronavirus”?
Meanwhile, TASS confirmed Moscow was using facial recognition cameras to track down tardy conscripts. (Nakanune published an excellent article on this development, for those who are interested.)
On the same day—April 18—legislation was adopted that allows authorities to deprive naturalized citizens of their Russian citizenship, without trial, if they are accused of discrediting the Russian military.
Yes, Saltykov-Shchedrin’s timeless aphorism, “the severity of Russian laws is alleviated by the lack of obligation to fulfil them”, still holds true today. But this is excessive even by Russian standards.
“Russia’s digital sectarians have miscalculated”
A far-reaching bill on electronic military subpoenas, and the creation of a database of all military-eligible citizens, was signed into law on Saturday after being blitzed through the Federal Assembly.
Katyusha.org—a pro-Putin, pro-SMO alt media outlet run by conservative/Orthodox firebrand Andrey Tsyganov—described the new law as a “social rating system for conscripts and mobilized [reservists]” in an article published on April 18:
What the heck is happening in Russia?
We report, you decide.