Friday, March 31, 2017

Russia: Rubber Ducks and Green Paint

Russia: Rubber Ducks and Green Paint

by Shoshana Bryen  •  March 31, 2017 at 5:00 am
  • How the United States responds to these protests abroad can determine not only the future of those protesting, but also the future of the governments that find themselves under pressure.
  • Russia seeks superpower status in the Middle East and Europe, but real superpower status has always required the ability to shoulder burdens abroad without fear of upheaval at home.
  • Ignoring the Green Movement in Iran was a missed opportunity for the West and a tragedy for the people of Iran. It is not America's job to create or foment unrest in Russia or anywhere else. But it is in the interest of the West to support and hearten those who have the courage to take on a corrupt and aggressive government.
Police in Moscow arrest an anti-corruption protestor on March 26, 2017. (Image source: CNN video screenshot)
For all the hyperbole in Washington about Russian hacking, Russian disinformation, Russian influence, and Russian espionage, the really remarkable events in Russia over the weekend appear barely to have registered.
One hundred years after the assassination of the last Czar, and two-and-a-half decades after the fall of the communist regime, Russian people have taken to the streets.
In early March, anti-corruption activist Alexei Navalny posted a report on YouTube detailing the corruption of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. After more than 13 million views in roughly three weeks, people, including a large number of teenagers, answered Navalny's call for public protest. They flooded the streets of 95 Russian cities, as well as London, Prague, Basel, and Bonn. Many carried rubber ducks -- or real ducks -- referring to reports of a luxury duck farm on one of Medvedev's properties.
Navalny is now in jail.


No comments:

Post a Comment