One of the fantastic things about Telegram is that it has given all of us a window into both Ukraine and Russia. Since Telegram has implemented a pretty decent translation API we can even read it. Mind you, slowly picking up the language, both of them.
Russia is an authoritarian state, and the war accelerated the process of closing off from the world. They have had a conflict between those who seek a fully Russian development and one that takes from the West as well. This started under Peter the Great. This continued in Soviet times and has reared its ugly head again.
One of the things that are alien to the western mind is the closing of civil rights. Partly because starting with the Enlightenment, we have had an expansion of them. This includes the protection of speech.
Laws were passed near the beginning of the war that forbids criticism of the war. This is one reason you have not seen many protests. This is an example of how speech against the war is suppressed, and it’s hardly the only one.
Dirt on the car discredits the Russian army
At the end of April, traffic cops caught up with and detained Aleksey Borisov on the road because of an anti-war inscription and a pacifist on his car. Under the threat of confiscation of the car (“an object with which the army was discredited”), he was forced to erase the inscription and testify for the protocol.
As a result, the court fined him 30 thousand rubles, Borisov did not appeal the decision, because he does not believe in the fairness of the court: last year, the security forces broke his ribs at Navalny’s shares, after which he also received a fine.
I include the photo of the vehicle in question. Why? This may earn you criticism from neighbors during times of war in the West, but not a fine.
This did not start with this war. Repression of free speech started early in Vladimir Putin’s rule but hit a wall in 2011. This is when tens of thousands took to the streets in Moscow.
If there is something Putin fears are color revolutions. He is also positive that the west has been plotting against him. This is not new. Joseph Stalin knew that England wanted to destroy the Soviet State and ignored intelligence that pointed to the…