Blog post by Alexei Navalny translated by Sarah Hurst
What’s happening and what to do
In fact it’s clear. It really is possible to win an election against them. And this would have been obvious to anyone who travelled with us around the regions. To tell the truth, it’s obvious to the Kremlin too. They too have eyes and the ability to draw elementary conclusions.
The notorious 86 percent rating exists in a political vacuum. It’s the same as asking a person who has been fed turnip all their life, what percentage rating would you give to the edibility of turnip? Their rating will be fairly high. Probably even many famous athletes and singers will speak in support of turnip and will be prepared to vouch for it. Why not? Turnip is our feed, it gives us stability.
This is a completely appropriate analogy: I’m 41, and the last election I saw without Putin in it was at the age of 20. And most of the readers of this post are probably younger than me.
We come into this political vacuum with the obvious, what’s visible on the surface: listen, more than turnip exists. There are some better things. And the price of turnip is suspiciously high. And its harvest in hundredweight per hectare is low. And people look at each other, as if they’ve woken up, and say to each other – well, it’s true, why turnip? Let’s at least have a culinary duel and compare turnip with other foods.
That’s why I’m sitting here under arrest again. And I’ve spent every fifth day of my election campaign in a cell. And my campaign chief is already under arrest for the third time. And there was a raid on my headquarters in St. Petersburg yesterday, and these raids take place constantly in all regions.
This is all Kremlin turnip. Understanding very well how harmful our campaign is for them, they purge those who for the first time in 20 years don’t just suggest an alternative, but also actively work throughout the whole country and with any voter.
From here the obvious follows
– What happens if you don’t do anything
– What you have to do
If you don’t do anything they will feed us this damn turnip until the end of our lives. And our children too. This isn’t an exaggeration, by the way. The turnip mafia also have children, they are growing up and, as you see, taking more and more government posts. It won’t stop by itself.
What should you do? Support our campaign now. Support me, if I’m your candidate. Support the idea of political competition itself, if you agree with me in any way.
I understand very well that I can’t correspond 100 percent with the political preferences of all voters, but what I propose is certainly better than a chilled warehouse full of last year’s turnip, which Russia has now turned into.
(The policeman who is guarding me and listening to me dictate this post is already clearly freaked out by the number of times I’ve said the word “turnip”.)
Moving on to specifics.
One. Tell everyone around you that the endless illegal arrests of Putin’s main opponent in the election and attacks on his headquarters are not the way an election campaign should be held. Form this public opinion around you. Campaign among your friends.
Two. October 7 is the day when we will try to say this together, openly and directly. Let turnipy professor Putin hear this and go into his well-deserved retirement. He’s been in power for 18 years, it’s enough.
On October 7 write on any social network, or say it in the media, or just tell your grandmother on the phone that you personally have two main political demands:
- I demand political competition
- I demand that Navalny and any other candidates who are able to collect the necessary 300,000 signatures be allowed into the election
We say this on the internet. And we say this on the streets.
Three. Our headquarters across the whole country (there are 80 now) are organising pickets (this is the form of public event we have managed to apply for after the arrest of me and Volkov). Join them.
The main event will be in St. Petersburg on the Field of Mars at 18:00. We understand very well that it was to prevent this that this whole clown show with “trials” was put on. The St. Petersburg bureaucrats decide to take off their masks and express themselves so nastily and aggressively because of October 7.
Moscow. We have applied for a rally on Pushkin Square, and we have already received an absolutely illegal refusal without the offer of any alternative venue, which means again in full accordance with the instruction of the Constitutional Court of Russia we will come out on Tverskaya at 14:00 as an authorised and completely legal event. Any point on Tverskaya Street from Pushkinskaya to the Manezh. Stand if you want, walk if you want, lie down if you want, sing if you want.
Our symbol is the Russian flag.
Our task is to make October 7 a day when every decent person in Russia will say out loud or at least to themselves these two demands:
Political competition and allowing Navalny into the election
Four. The Kremlin is blocking the infrastructure of the campaign as much as possible, preventing offline work – which means we need more opposing efforts. Send us a donation, sign up as a volunteer, or recruit another person to sign for my candidacy.
Thank you very much to everyone who supports us. Rays of support to all who are subjected to illegal pressure for not wanting to forget about their human rights.
A separate hello and support to my campaign chief Leonid Volkov. A courageous man, he announced a hunger strike as a sign of protest against his illegal arrest. His pregnant wife is due to give birth soon. I can understand his feelings and desperation.
Categories: Campaign diary