Following yet another opponent of Mr. Putin coming to a premature end, and given how Keir Starmer and his apparatchiks are running the Labour Party, there is now a sense that Mr. Putin is not only sending a message to those who oppose him but also to those whom he serves as a role model for.

The list of victims sacrificed for the new world order that Starmer and co. represent:

Alexei Navalny‘s story unfolds as another chapter in the alarming narrative of critics facing peril for opposing Russian President Vladimir Putin. In the last two decades, those who dared to challenge Putin have encountered a range of dire consequences, from imprisonment to street shootings and poisonings with substances like polonium-210.

Born to factory owners near Moscow, Alexei Navalny emerged as one of the most prominent and audacious critics during Putin’s tenure. His political activism, marked by extensive investigations into high-level corruption and a bold run for mayor of Moscow, thrust him into the global spotlight. Many saw Navalny as a genuine threat to Putin’s regime. The pinnacle of his defiance came in August 2020, when he fell gravely ill on a flight from Siberia to Moscow. Accusing the Kremlin of poisoning him, Navalny’s team’s allegations were initially denied. German medics later confirmed he had been poisoned with novichok, a Soviet-era nerve agent. Despite months of recovery, Navalny chose to return to Russia, where he faced arrest, conviction on politically charged charges, and ultimately, according to Russian officials, death in prison.

Boris Nadezhdin, an opposition politician, sought to challenge Putin in the 2024 presidential election. Despite collecting over 200,000 signatures, he was barred from running in February 2024. Undeterred, Nadezhdin pledged to appeal, emphasising the profound political significance of his participation in the election.

Yevgeny Prigozhin, a former hot dog seller, ascended to lead the Wagner Group, a private army notorious for brutality in Ukraine and influence in Africa. His bold criticism of the Russian military ended abruptly when he died in a plane crash in August 2023. The circumstances raised suspicions of Kremlin involvement, which were vehemently denied by the Russian authorities.

Anna Politkovskaya, a journalist shot on Putin’s birthday in 2006, specialised in investigating human rights abuses and corruption. Her tragic demise fuelled accusations of Kremlin negligence in protecting the media.

Boris Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister and vocal Putin critic, met his end near the Kremlin in 2015. Five men were found guilty in connection with his murder, shedding light on the risks faced by opposition leaders in Russia.

Alexander Litvinenko, a former FSB agent, accused Putin of corruption before dying in 2006 after ingesting polonium-210-laced tea in London. Garry Kasparov, a chess grandmaster, found himself in exile in New York due to his opposition to Putin. Lukoil’s chairman, Ravil Maganov, died in 2022 after falling from a Moscow hospital window.

Journalist Paul Klebnikov, human rights activist Natalia Estemirova, politician Denis Voronenkov, and oligarch Boris Berezovsky all met tragic fates due to their opposition to Putin’s regime.

Sergei Skripal, a former Russian military intelligence colonel, survived a 2018 poisoning attempt in the UK. Similarly, liberal politician Sergei Yushenkov was shot dead in Moscow in 2003 for his outspoken stance against Putin and the war in Chechnya. The detailed narratives of these individuals paint a disturbing picture of the challenges faced by those who dare to defy Putin’s rule.

Whereas the likes of Keir Starmer are more subtle (using their friends in the establishment corporate media to spread lies and misinformation), the outcome is always the same: death to democracy and a hoorah to authoritarianism.

Douglas James

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