Russia

allezfred

In A Fake Snowball Fight
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I never said that I agree with a child having the rink they skate bombed. But surely you can see that this was not action of 13 year old Russian kids who want to skate?

Your arguments reminds me the excuse of bombing a whole village of civilians including children because terrorists might be there. There is no denying that terrorists are evil, but that’s not a reason to think that innocent civilians should be paying the price. I prefer punishing those who actually did something wrong, rather than some 13 year old kids. You seem to be very comfortable with punishing others, even those who had absolutely nothing to do with the situation. Is says a lot about you as a person.
Bombing a whole village of civilians is an interesting analogy given that is precisely what the state sponsoring the thirteen year old skaters is doing right now day in, day out. :shuffle:
 

Dai's Blues for Klook

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@hanca Honestly, I would respond in a more extensive manner to you, but eh, I'll just say, I hope a lot of Russian skaters pick Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack this season. Probably the one piece of music most of them could properly interpret, even if by accident.
 

reut

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Yes, I am aware that there are villages and cities full of innocent civilians being bombed every hour, minute and second of every single day. There is no single post I wrote, where I would support what Russia is doing. As I said, they were uninvited ‘guests’ in my country too, so I do have an idea about what’s going on even when they are not bombing. But that still does not mean that I will ever be comfortable with collateral damage. In my view, that’s wrong and I can’t see how the fact that ‘people are being killed in Ukraine’ justify putting sanctions on kids living in Russia. I would be quite happy with banning sportsmen who actually support the war on the media or with their actions, or even banning sportsmen over 18 (because one can argue that they are a part of the system if they can vote), but I disagree with banning kids. I feel that’s wrong.
Oh, but you see, everything you write here and in "ru skating thread" actually shows that: 1) you don't have any idea, you just think that you do; 2) you're fully comfortable with enormous and real collateral damage of children mutilated, orphaned, dead, just in a different country.

I guess I will stop this conversation here. There are enough people who try to explain you, but you just FEEL and you don't listen or try to understand, it's kind of impossible to argue something like that anyway.
 

Dai's Blues for Klook

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1,588
Whereas the average Russian secondary or university student is not, I would imagine, typically being sponsored by the state, nor are they likely to produce anything usable to the state for propaganda purposes.
Although to properly respond, I would be fine with people like Tuktamysheva, Kolyada, Shcherbakova (the three skaters who come to mind who've not said anything pro-war) wishing to just turn up as university students elsewhere. Again, I say, it's not black and white to me. If they're no longer state-funded athletes being used for soft power, that's fine by me, let them rebuild their new lives, they seem like fine people.
 

hanca

Values her privacy
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12,462
Bombing a whole village of civilians is an interesting analogy given that is precisely what the state sponsoring the thirteen year old skaters is doing right now day in, day out. :shuffle:
You still didn’t give even one example how those thirteen year old skaters are responsible for what Putin does. The analogy was an example of not caring about collateral damage. It is the same way of thinking. Let’s punish everyone around there, and hopefully we will also punish the one who is actually responsible.
 

VGThuy

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I thought none of this mattered since only Russia is producing "some decent" skating anyway and the other skaters from other countries aren't worth a watch. If that's the case, then Russia doesn't even need international competition. Valieva pretty much said that although it was a "pity" she couldn't compete internationally, she essentially didn't lose anything since all the real skaters are in Russia anyway. So what damage is there? ;)
 
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clairecloutier

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Although to properly respond, I would be fine with people like Tuktamysheva, Kolyada, Shcherbakova (the three skaters who come to mind who've not said anything pro-war) wishing to just turn up as university students elsewhere. Again, I say, it's not black and white to me. If they're no longer state-funded athletes being used for soft power, that's fine by me, let them rebuild their new lives, they seem like fine people.

If any Russian skaters chose to emigrate and pursue university or skating in another country, I wouldn't see an issue with that, as long as they weren't previously war supporters.

The problem is not the skaters themselves, it's the fact that they serve the current state.
 

Dai's Blues for Klook

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If any Russian skaters chose to emigrate and pursue university or skating in another country, I wouldn't see an issue with that, as long as they weren't previously war supporters.

The problem is not the skaters themselves, it's the fact that they serve the current state.
Yes. And beyond the LGBTQ+ point I brought up, it's also simple fact that there are a lot of classes in Russia that, to my knowledge, don't have it good in Russia. Volga Tatar would be one of them. Of course it needs to be on a case-by-case basis, and I 100% agree the priority should be Ukrainians, but I don't wish to see the rest of the Russians treated as collateral damage. You're in the US, you might have met many gay Chinese students, I know I certainly did during my time there. Imagine China does go to war with Taiwan, and the US says "no, I don't care if you're Uyghur, or Mongol, or Hui, or Manchu, or LGBTQ+, you need to stay where you are". It would be troubling to me.
 

VGThuy

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I really do think if there are people who want to emigrate from Russia for political reasons or due to persecution and oppression, they should be welcome. I don't think it's in any way comparative to a situation where a skater is being denied an opportunity to compete in an international skating competition under the banner of the flag of the country (and symbolically promoting that country even if only by symbol) that is committing such crimes and abuses AND when that skater is being supported by that same state. To make that comparison is morally questionable and downright sad.
 

allezfred

In A Fake Snowball Fight
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You still didn’t give even one example how those thirteen year old skaters are responsible for what Putin does. The analogy was an example of not caring about collateral damage. It is the same way of thinking. Let’s punish everyone around there, and hopefully we will also punish the one who is actually responsible.
They are receiving money for their training from the same state that is killing civilians in Ukraine which I have stated before. In fact, 13 year old skaters in Russia probably deserve to be sanctioned more than ordinary 13 year olds sitting in their bedrooms in Russia.
 

hanca

Values her privacy
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12,462
No one likes the idea of collateral damage, but there is currently no way to avoid it. There is no way to limit international sanctions so that only the bad guys are affected. Innocents, be they skaters, students, or other civilians are going to be hurt, but what do you suggest? No sanctions? Skaters and students get individualized case-by-case examination but other civilians have to suffer from shortages due to other sanctions?
Well, there are other ways it could be handled. For example:
Russian junior sportsmen/sportswomen (under 18) be able to compete internationally, but no allowed Russian flag and anthem. They would be competing as independent athletes. (Not independent athletes from Russia, just independent athletes.) One can argue, no voting rights means they can’t be responsible for the situation. But they would need to understand that any wrong action from the athlete (propagation of Russia or supporting the war) would mean indefinite ban for the athlete.

Over 18, the international sport unions could make a rule that they can represent any country that would accept them without needing release. As long as they understand that this change would be permanent (they would never be able to represent Russia again). So if, for example, Russian skaters found a country who would accept them, they would not need release and they would be able to represent that country. That would be much better solution, in my view, because if Russia likes having good athletes, then losing the best ones who would choose to compete for other countries be much more painful than not allowing them compete. And if someone chooses not to represent other country, then it is their own decision and their own fault that they can’t compete.
 

Karen-W

Neither sexy nor sultry, but loving life!
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Honestly, @hanca, this whole "what about the 13 year olds?" line is such a strawman argument. They are minors and their parents are responsible for them. If the parents want their kids to skate internationally then their parents can voice their disapproval of the Putin regime and this war. The notion that these skaters have ZERO agency is a fallacy. They have agency, but it is through their parents and legal guardians, who DO have a vote and are choosing to support the "special military operation."
 

Sylvia

Rooting for underdogs!
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Russian authorities detained a former state TV journalist who quit after staging an on-air protest against Moscow’s war in Ukraine and charged her Wednesday with spreading false information about Russia’s armed forces, according to her lawyer.
Marina Ovsyannikova was charged over a separate street protest last month, when she held up a banner that said “(Russian President Vladimir) Putin is a killer, his soldiers are fascists. 352 children have been killed (in Ukraine). How many more children should die for you to stop?”
If tried and convicted, Ovsyannikova faces up to 10 years in prison under a new law that penalizes statements against the military and that was enacted shortly after Russian troops moved into Ukraine, her lawyer, Dmitry Zakhvatov, said in a Telegram post.
Ovsyannikova’s home was raided Wednesday and she was taken for questioning. Zakhvatov said the former producer for Russian state-funded Channel One would spend the night in a holding cell at Moscow police headquarters.
Independent journalists in Russia have come under particular Kremlin scrutiny. A Moscow court on Wednesday fined the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta 350,000 rubles ($5,700) for “abusing the freedom of mass information.” It was unclear what the newspaper was accused of doing wrong.
Since Putin came to power more than two decades ago, nearly two dozen journalists have been killed, including at least four who had worked for Novaya Gazeta. The newspaper shut down in March.
Its editor-in-chief, Dmitry Muratov, won the Nobel Peace Prize last year. In June, he auctioned off his prize to raise money for Ukrainian child refugees. The gold medal sold for $103.5 million.
 

Dobre

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I've heard some good arguments for banning VISAs, and of course, a pleasure trip is not a priority. I do have questions about people who want to visit families. Would the following be on the same type of VISA? There was a local woman here of Russian descent who wanted to go back to see her family in Russia. Ultimately, she & her family made a decision to meet in Turkey instead, which seemed to me a heck of a better idea. People will want to see their families. Some will have exceptionally compelling reasons to do so (as we saw happen during covid). And the last thing we need are more American/foreign hostages in Russia so I, personally, would rather see family members meet up elsewhere if possible. Though of course every country has to make its own decisions, and different countries have different concerns. I would imagine that sharing a border with Russia would be a pretty big one right now.

Regardless of my thoughts above, it seems like banning tourist VISAs is likely to be the next tier in sanctions for more than one location. There have been comments from leaders in Latvia, Finland, and Czech Republic--at least--discussing these tourist VISA bans this week.
 

text_skate

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here is the original inivestigation, in Russian, published by The Insider
The Insider obtained an archive of complaints to the Russian military prosecutor's office, which reflects the real situation during the war in Ukraine. The Insider and Bellingcat managed to independently confirm the authenticity of letters from this archive. As can be seen from the appeals, conscripts are deceived or coerced into the war zone, soldiers are not provided with normal food and medical care, contract soldiers deliberately violate all the norms and rules of the charter to be suspended from service, and parents cannot get any information about their captured or killed children. The same complaints of the Russian citizens also reveal looting and atrocities by Russian soldiers.
Russia is so broken
 

text_skate

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Meduza published an investigation into last years election

Link to summary "17.1 million stuffed ballots":
  • Despite the reduction of video transmissions from polling stations in Russia’s September 2021 elections, Meduza obtained more than 1 million hours of footage from webcams installed on the premises of more than 9,000 local election commissions in 19 different regions across the country.
  • With the help of artificial intelligence (software based on neural networks called “Revizor,” i.e. “Inspector”), a group of independent monitors examined the video archive. Revizor cannot identify voters or determine how they voted, but it can count in the videos how many people voted at a particular polling station.
  • Footage from 3,505 of the polling stations was sufficiently uninterrupted and high quality to be analyzed using the Revizor system. According to official data, 3.2 million people voted at these polling stations, but the videos we examined showed only a little more than 2 million voters. In other words, roughly a third of the ballots cast in these precincts were apparently fake.
  • If we assume that this same pattern of falsification holds true nationally, the total number of stuffed ballots in Russia’s September 2021 elections surpasses 17.1 million.
Article in Russian:
 

reut

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2,043
Nuanced thoughts from a Finn on the tourist visa issue:

She mentions there a very important thing:

In a situation where Russia, Finland’s forever security threat no. 1, is actively waging a war against another one of its neighbours, there are potential security risks related to Russian nationals who come to Finland. Sad & cynical ? Maybe, but that’s life

It's known for a fact, that half a year before the war started there were various russians that crossed the border, rented flats in crucial points in, for example, Kyiv (Kharkiv too, I think) and prepared for invasion from inside the country. They were the main concern during the first days of the battle for Kyiv. And based on various stories some of them got very close to where the president was staying. So security risk for one of the countries that potentially might be invaded next is very, very real.
 
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Asli

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12,981
I am along them who want to help LGTBQ-people and antiputinists out of Russia, if they want to leave, and OTOH do not want to help the war supporters at all.

This seems like the natural policy against a state raging an unprovoked war against its neighbour. Russian war supporters are possible saboteurs and therefore a threat to Finland and to any country supporting Ukraine's war effort.
 

Dobre

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14,249

Russian dissident Alexey Navalny placed in isolation​

"On his Twitter account, Navalny said that he had been placed in isolation because he had been trying to form a prisoners’ union. Earlier this month, he also filed a lawsuit that asks his penal colony to disclose who purchases the goods manufactured there."
 

text_skate

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Interesting read:
‘They turned us into savages’: extract from Pavel Filatyev’s account

Edit:
Original account in Russian, 141 pp, PDF on vk:

Some key points on twitter by ChrisO
 
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Oreo

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Messages
561
Meduza published an investigation into last years election

Link to summary "17.1 million stuffed ballots":
  • Despite the reduction of video transmissions from polling stations in Russia’s September 2021 elections, Meduza obtained more than 1 million hours of footage from webcams installed on the premises of more than 9,000 local election commissions in 19 different regions across the country.
  • With the help of artificial intelligence (software based on neural networks called “Revizor,” i.e. “Inspector”), a group of independent monitors examined the video archive. Revizor cannot identify voters or determine how they voted, but it can count in the videos how many people voted at a particular polling station.
  • Footage from 3,505 of the polling stations was sufficiently uninterrupted and high quality to be analyzed using the Revizor system. According to official data, 3.2 million people voted at these polling stations, but the videos we examined showed only a little more than 2 million voters. In other words, roughly a third of the ballots cast in these precincts were apparently fake.
  • If we assume that this same pattern of falsification holds true nationally, the total number of stuffed ballots in Russia’s September 2021 elections surpasses 17.1 million.
Article in Russian:
Something I can add to this: I'm an international election observer with the OSCE/ODIHR. For the last ten years I've monitored the elections in Ukraine and one in Russia in 2016. I volunteered for last year's election in Russia, but as it turned out, the Russians started gaming how many short-term and long-term observers they would allow in, citing "the deteriorating epidemiological situation," to the point that the statistical modeling the OSCE uses would not work. So they pulled out. My feeling was if it was safe enough to allow only 50 observers in, then it was safe enough to allow the full contingent in. No doubt, there was plenty of ballot box stuffing, but there are plenty of other areas where cheating happens: in the counting, the voter roles, the tabulation, intimidation... It's a long list.
 

Dobre

Well-Known Member
Messages
14,249

Russian war dissident Roizman detained in Yekaterinburg​


"Yevgeny Roizman was a popular opposition politician who achieved rare electoral success. He served as the mayor of Yekaterinburg, Russia's fourth-largest city, between 2013 and 2018. In an unusual move, the local governor said on Wednesday he deserved 'justice and respect' - not something state officials usually request for such an outspoken critic of the war."
 

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