AUG
5
2012

Russia’s Pussy Riot shows Czar Putin will go after anyone

(TheGuardian) “The feminist collective hit the headlines when three members were arrested after an anti-Putin protest. Now they face up to seven years in jail, a prospect that has shocked and radicalised many Russians. On the eve of their trial, some of the women speak exclusively.”

“Pussy Riot aren’t just the coolest revolutionaries you’re ever likely to meet. They’re also the nicest. They’re the daughters that any parent would be proud to have. Smart, funny, sensitive, not afraid to stand up for their beliefs. One of them makes a point of telling me how ‘kindness’ is an important part of their ideology. They have also done more to expose the moral bankruptcy of the Putin regime than probably anybody else. No politician, nor journalist, nor opposition figure, nor public personality has created quite this much fuss. Nor sparked such potentially significant debate. The most amazing thing of all, perhaps – more amazing even than calling themselves feminists in the land women’s rights forgot – is that they’ve done it with art.

” ‘We show the brutal and cruel side of the government,’ says Squirrel. ‘We don’t do something illegal. It’s not illegal, singing and saying what you think.’ .. Because they are so young. Because they have children. Because what they have done is so unimportant and silly and has all of a sudden become so huge because of this disproportionate reaction. Because it touches so strangely on so many things, and this is where it becomes an event of almost historic proportions. It touches everything: the church and the state, believers and non-believers, the judge and the tsar, and this Russian thing that never ever ends.”

“And it’s that level that is so scary, that has scared so many people across Russia. ‘The Khodorkovsky trial [former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky who is now in jail] demonstrated that Putin would go after the oligarchs,’ says Pyotr Verzilov. It sent a very clear, unmistakable message to the oligarchs. And what the Pussy Riot trial is showing is that they’ll go after anybody. Nobody is safe.

Hmmm… sounds like critics of the US government right here at home are also being silenced as well, not that anyone cares all that much about it (well not yet at least, until it more directly affects them)… “A political website that contained stinging criticism of the Obama administration and its handling of the Fast and Furious scandal was ordered to be shut down by the Obama campaign’s ‘Truth Team’, according to private investigator Douglas Hagmann, who was told by ISP GoDaddy his site contained information that was “maliciously harmful to individuals in the government.”‘Obama Truth Team’ Orders GoDaddy To Shut Down Website

“The crime in question occurred on 21 February and took precisely 51 seconds. The five women and a film team, plus various supporters and a couple of journalists, entered the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, jumped over a gold rail, stood on the steps of the pulpit (a place where only men may stand) and performed the opening bars of a punk song. You can watch it on YouTube. It starts out as a religious hymn, then mutates into something Sex Pistols-esque, the women kneeling, genuflecting, crossing themselves, jumping up and down and, after a few seconds, being intercepted by security guards and led away.”

“After being ejected by cathedral guards, ‘the police came and they didn’t even open a case,’ says Verzilov. It was only after it appeared on YouTube under the name ‘Virgin Mary Chuck Out Putin’ and got all this attention – Patriarch Kirill watched it and, so the investigators told us, rang Putin and the head of the Moscow police – that it became this great big deal, that they decided that it was some sort of crime.”

“In the press, Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, called it ‘blasphemous’, saying that the church was ‘under attack’ and that ‘the devil has laughed at us’. ” [as it has throughout history, the Church once again acts in the best interest of itself and the state]

“The church’s spokesman, Vsevolod Chaplin, said: ‘God condemns what they’ve done. I’m convinced that this sin will be punished in this life and the next, God revealed this to me just like he revealed the gospels to the church. There’s only one way out: repentance.’ ” [yes, God revealed this to him on his last LSD trip]

More than this, though, is how the church has started to act as if it is the propaganda wing of the government. Before the election, Patriarch Kirill said that it was ‘un-Christian’ to demonstrate. And then he said that Putin had been placed at the head of the government ‘by God’. No one was talking about this before. And now everybody is.” [the Church basically helps Putin to make sure that people stay subservient and submissive – maybe God positioned Pussy Riot to help the people awaken from the bullpoop spewed by Church and State]

“But the tide is turning. It’s the severity of the penalty that has shocked most Russians. Even conservative, religious Russians who thought their act was silly or offensive. Very few defendants are imprisoned pre-trial. Certainly not ones with young children accused of non-violent crimes. More than 200 well-known public people signed an open letter condemning the trial, including many Putin supporters, and another 41,000 rank-and-file Russians have added their signatures.”

“It’s extraordinary what Pussy Riot have done. How they have taken feminism to one of the most macho countries on Earth. How they have revealed the faultlines at the heart of the Russian state, the moral bankruptcy of the Putin regime. It’s hard to reconcile that with the women I met, with their skinny shoulders and thin wrists and lack of any weaponry bar guts and wit. The word absurd has been worn thin with use, but there’s no other way to describe what is happening in Russia today.”

” ‘Putin is scared of us, can you imagine?’ says Squirrel. ‘Scared of girls.’ “

‘The most important dictator, Putin, is really afraid of people,‘ says Squirrel. ‘More specifically, he’s afraid of Pussy Riot. Afraid of a bunch of young, positive, optimistic women unafraid to speak their minds.’ ”

Full Story: Pussy Riot: will Vladimir Putin regret taking on Russia’s cool women punks? (TheGuardian)

As Senator Gracchus said in the movie Gladiator, “I think he knows what Rome is. Rome is the mob. Conjure magic for them and they’ll be distracted. Take away their freedom and still they’ll roar. The beating heart of Rome is not the marble of the senate, it’s the sand of the coliseum. He’ll bring them death – and they will love him for it.” Uh oh, is the mob awakening…?

UPDATE: Pussy Riot Found Guilty in What Looks like a 21st Century Witch Hunt (Slate)

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