Russia’s Neo-Soviet Media Crackdown

“When this reporter met Nina Solodayeva, a former Uralasbest security guard and her husband, Ivan Solodayev, who had stage-four lung cancer, a car with the company’s security detailed pulled up to stop the conversation taking place. Solodayeva lost her job that day.”

That’s an excerpt from an article published by ace Russia reporter Anna Nemtsova in Newsweek detailing the collapse of Russia’s Stalinist monotowns.  After visiting many of them, she concludes:  “It is the same story in every monotown I visited. Only freedom of speech and action can provide the sort of jobs needed to replace the old smokestack industries built in Soviet times. But instead of encouraging openness and innovation, the government stands by as dissent is punished and optimism snuffed out.”

In other words, instead of opening facing the problem and trying to solve it, just as in the time of Stalin the Kremlin is seeking to sweep the problem under the carpet and destroy anyone who reports on it.

Over on the powerful and influential American Thinker website, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld has more on the story of Putin’s neo-Soviet crackdown on the media, focusing on the often hilariously dishonest “reporting” by Kremlin-controlled TV concerning the Ukrainian uprising.

Barbaric Russians Remain the Enemies of Liberty

“The attitude of Russians to the abolition of the propiska was more neutral-to-negative than positive.”

That’s according to Russian journalist and novelist Mikhail Loginov, in a long essay for Open Democracy explaining in horrifying detail how the Soviet system of the propiska is being reestablished under the dictatorial rule of Vladimir Putin.

That’s right: Russians actually want their government to tell them where they can live.

In Soviet times, a citizen could not leave the country or even move from one city to another without the Kremlin’s permission.  In those times, ignorant Westerners were led to believe that Russians were civilized people who loved freedom and democracy as much as anyone and who were as much victims of their repressive government as were the people of the West.

Time has shown this belief was totally without basis in fact. Given the chance, Russians have warmly embraced the rule of a proud KGB spy, indeed have given the KGB formal power to an extent never granted in Soviet times, and they have applauded as he took steps to recreate the Soviet state in Russia.  A devastating essay by Russia scholar Leon Aron in Foreign Policy lays out the horrifying detail.

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