Who is Putin's greatest enemy

Russia: THIS blogger is Putin's greatest enemy

Day four of the protests against electoral fraud in Russia.

Hundreds of people took to the streets again, and arrests were made again in Moscow and St. Petersburg. But the opposition cannot be intimidated! Despite the tough crackdown on the police and censorship in the state media, they want to continue their protest. The number of security forces in the capital was drastically increased; according to internal information, 51,000 police officers were mobilized on Wednesday.

The Other Russia movement reported ten arrests in its ranks. The group “For honest elections” called on several social networks for a demonstration in central Moscow on Saturday.

Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has now made the USA jointly responsible for the protests! US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave "the starting signal" for the protests, Putin said. The demonstrators in Russia also have the "support" of the US State Department.

In Russia, on the other hand, there is ONE man who has meanwhile risen to become the star of the Russian anti-Kremlin movement: Alexej Navalny (35).

The Russian edition of the lifestyle magazine "Esquire" has his face printed on the cover of the current issue.


On the day of the parliamentary election, Navalny tweeted reports from Russia's regions every minute and declared Prime Minister Vladimir Putin a “thief” in a fiery speech the evening after the election.

Navalny was arrested and given a quick trial to 15 days in jail - for "non-compliance with an order of the representatives of the state power"

Who is the man who seemingly fearlessly opposes Putin's power apparatus?

While the media is censored, opposition parties fail in elections due to a threshold clause or can be banned beforehand, a single person with a conviction and an Internet blog is not as easy to direct as the "managed democracy" once propagated by the Kremlin.

Navalny is a lawyer in Moscow, married with two children. He began his campaign against grievances in Russia in 2007.

First, he used investigative methods to combat corruption: Navalny bought shares in large Russian corporations, some of which are state-owned. The bank WTB, the oil company Rosneft and the natural gas giant Gazprom were among them.

As a minority shareholder, Navalny was allowed to attend annual meetings and was able to contact management directly with inquiries. His demands: less corruption, more transparency.

Navalny published reports on the corporations and did his own research. Since then, he has kept a record of allegations of corruption on the rospil.info website.

Navalny soon no longer limited himself to business: the government and the Kremlin administration were the targets of his criticism.

His blog navalny.livejournal.com has become one of the most widely read blogs in Russia. "My blog only exists because the media is being censored," Navalny told the Russian Esquire.

In recent months, Navalny has come out against the policies of Putin and Medvedev more and more resolutely. "I would like to know how seriously Putin believes that the system he has set up can exist," said Navalny.

On the radio in February, he called the Putin party “United Russia”, which won an absolute majority of the parliamentary seats in the polls on Sunday, a “party of fraudsters and thieves”. The slogan quickly caught on in the confusing Russian opposition landscape. During the protests in the past few days, the demonstrators chanted this slogan.

The Russian authorities have had Navalny in their sights for a long time. In May, an investigation was launched against him on suspicion of fraud in a wood deal - in the eyes of his supporters a maneuver to discredit the blogger.

Despite his much-noticed criticism of the state, Navalny represents questionable political views for some of his supporters.

In 2007 he resigned from the liberal opposition party Yabloko and became active in the nationalist milieu. Last month he took part in the so-called Russian March, a demonstration by ultra-nationalists whose participants oppose immigrants and the financial support of the North Caucasus, which is mainly inhabited by Muslims. At that time Navalny said it was important to “teach the radical youth”.

On his blog, Navalny recently campaigned to vote for any party in the recent parliamentary elections, mainly against United Russia. Navalny thus presents himself as an opportunist who has declared the opposition to power his goal.

On Monday, the day of his arrest, he called on his supporters on his blog to demonstrate against the "fabrication of elections in Moscow". "The results in the city must by no means be recognized," he wrote. As possible evidence of the alleged election fraud, he included links to video recordings from election offices.

During his prison sentence for the next two weeks, the power elite in Moscow will have peace - but Navalny will not be intimidated ...