This video of a March 16 protest in Moscow shows that some Russians strongly oppose what their government has done in Ukraine. The protest leaders say about 50,000 people came. Visitors to my blog who don’t know Russian might still find it interesting to watch parts of the 1.5 hours of video footage here. It could be removed from Russian blogger Oleg Kozyrev’s site in the future, but at least for now it’s available there, on the Echo Moscow site, and on YouTube.
At the beginning, opposition figure Alexander Ryklin denounces the Russian aggression, and Boris Nemtsov slams the propaganda–including stories about fascists in Kiev and Banderovtsy (followers of Stepan Bandera–see my last post). A journalist speaks about how Russia is sliding toward totalitarianism, or worse, and how Russian and Ukrainian journalists could help prevent this if they stood together. Another speaker, Oleg Orlov, says everyone remembers that the Kremlin justified the 1994 and 1999 invasions of Chechnya with similar propaganda, including the need to protect the Russian population in the North Caucasus:
“It sounds like the same propaganda we’re hearing now. … We understand why the forces in the Kremlin began those wars: Their only goal was to consolidate their power, and there is no better means than war to trample the opposition, take over the mass media, and brainwash most of our population. Yeltsin wasn’t able to pull this off [in the 1994-96 Chechen war], but Putin played this war card brilliantly in the 2000s. Putin is a man of war.”