Russian Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Murdered in Arctic Prison

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was found dead on Friday in a prison located north of the Arctic Circle. The circumstances surrounding his death point to a deliberate act of murder, leaving no room for natural causes or accidents. Navalny, who had previously been targeted with poison in 2020, was now subjected to a slow and public execution by the Russian dictatorship. This tragic event serves as a damning indictment of President Vladimir Putin and his regime, as their responsibility for Navalny’s demise is as significant as if Putin himself had pulled the trigger.

Navalny’s only “crime” was his relentless exposure of Putin and his corrupt network, which he did with charisma and humor. While there were disagreements among Navalny and various factions within the anti-Putin coalition, the shared goal of removing Putin from power united them. With Navalny’s untimely death, Russian society, which failed to support him and challenge the oppressive regime, has also suffered a significant blow. His optimism and proactive approach stood in stark contrast to the prevailing nihilism and inaction in the country.

Blame for this tragedy extends beyond Putin. The Russian people, who failed to match Navalny’s courage and determination in ending Putin’s dictatorship and aggression, cannot escape their share of responsibility. While some attempted to rally against the regime, their efforts fell short, leaving us to wonder what might have been. The massive demonstration in Moscow on December 24, 2011, stands out as a missed opportunity. Navalny himself recognized the potential for change, stating, “We are a peaceful force and will not do it now. But if these crooks and thieves try to go on cheating us, if they continue telling lies and stealing from us, we will take what belongs to us with our own hands!”

Western politicians also bear blame for their inadequate response to Navalny’s poisoning in 2020 and subsequent imprisonment. Treating these incidents as mere negotiation points with Putin, they engaged in empty rhetoric and corrupt deals, allowing more blood to stain their hands. President Biden’s warning of “devastating” consequences should anything happen to Navalny in prison will now be tested. Putin, emboldened by decades of crimes and aggression, has crossed yet another bloody red line, confident that there will be no repercussions. If proven correct, his murderous confidence will only grow.

Ukraine represents a vulnerable point in Putin’s armor. Biden cannot hide behind Republican obstruction of aid to Ukraine, as reprehensible as it may be. The White House possesses the authority to provide Ukraine with essential long-range artillery and fighter jets to protect civilians from Russia’s relentless bombings. Additionally, seizing over $300 billion in Russian central bank assets and utilizing them to aid Ukraine, along with confiscating luxury assets owned by Putin and his oligarchs in the West, would be a fitting tribute to Navalny’s anticorruption campaigns.

However, Western politicians often prefer dissidents to be martyrs, allowing them to offer empty condolences while negotiating with the very murderers they condemn. This hypocrisy goes unchallenged. Navalny was a fighter, and unless Biden, Scholz, and others are willing to fight, they should refrain from invoking his name.

Furthermore, those who openly side with Putin, such as Viktor Orbán, Donald Trump, Tucker Carlson, and Elon Musk, deserve to be shamed. Carlson’s recent visit to Moscow, where he conducted a fawning interview with Putin and produced videos glorifying the regime, mirrors the actions of Western communist sympathizers like Walter Duranty. However, Carlson’s campaign to promote Putin’s dictatorship and normalize his war crimes is even more egregious. The low value placed on human life in Putin’s dictatorship would undoubtedly captivate Carlson if he were still in Moscow.

The timing of Navalny’s murder raises questions. Putin felt secure enough to finish the job, as cowards and bullies are most dangerous when they feel safe and triumphant. This sense of security stems from American aid to Ukraine being paralyzed by the GOP-controlled House, Biden’s feigned helplessness, and Trump’s popularity in the polls. While discussions at the Munich Security Conference focused on Navalny’s murder, the daily deaths of innocent Ukrainians at the hands of Putin’s regime were overshadowed. NATO and the leaders of the free world find themselves treading water while Ukrainians continue to suffer.

If Biden and the free world genuinely wish to strike a “devastating” blow against the Kremlin’s killer, they need only provide Ukraine with the necessary weapons to defend itself. However, the West’s apathy mirrors that of the Russian people, and the consequences will be the same. Putin will grow bolder, and the price of stopping him will continue to rise. The risk to Ukraine, the Baltic states, Poland, and other political prisoners like Vladimir Kara-Murza and Evan Gershkovich will escalate.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

1 Response

  1. I am deeply saddened to hear about the tragic death of Alexei Navalny. It is a devastating loss for the Russian opposition movement and for those who believe in democracy and human rights. I would like to hear the author’s thoughts on the implications of Navalny’s death for the future of the opposition movement in Russia, as well as their opinion on the international response to this incident.

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