A letter to the editor of the New York Times:
To the Editor,
The statement by Ellen Barry and Michael Schwirtz (“Vast Rally in Moscow Is a Challenge to Putin’s Power,” December 24) about the recent wave of anti-Putin protests in Moscow that “[i]f the movement sustains its intensity, it could alter the course of the presidential election in March, when Mr. Putin plans to extend his stretch as the country’s dominant figure to an eventual 18 years” is deeply misleading. The writers fail to inform their readers that protest activity in other cities beyond Moscow disappeared almost entirely on Christmas Eve. Less than 5,000 were on the streets of Russia’s second city, St. Petersburg, and almost nobody anywhere else. 0.2% of the population on Moscow streets cannot alter the course of the coming election. Nor can 0.4% or 0.6%. Moreover, in Ukraine we have seen a real popular uprising fizzle and dissipate, so that now its leader Yulia Tymoshenko is rotting in prison. There is far less hope for Russia than these journalists would have us believe.
Kim Zigfeld — Russia columnist, American Thinker and Pajamas Media