US-funded opposition leader and right-wing extremist Alexei Navalny, who regularly masquerades as an “anti-corruption activist,” was himself sentenced to a suspended jail term for fraud. His brother, implicated in the same case, was imprisoned. The Guardian would report in its article, “Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny gets suspended sentence but brother jailed,” that:
A Russian court gave Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny a suspended sentence on Tuesday for embezzling money but jailed his brother for three and a half years in a case seen as part of a campaign to stifle dissent.
Navalny spearheads legal challenges on behalf of minority shareholders in large Russian companies, including Gazprom, Bank VTB, Sberbank, Rosneft, Transneft, and Surgutneftegaz, through the Union of Minority Shareholders. He has successfully forced companies to disclose more information to their shareholders and has sued individual managers at several major corporations for allegedly corrupt practices. Navalny is also co-founder of the Democratic Alternative movement and was vice-chairman of the Moscow branch of the political party YABLOKO. In 2010, he launched RosPil, a public project funded by unprecedented fundraising in Russia. In 2011, Navalny started RosYama, which combats fraud in the road construction sector.
The Democratic Alternative, also written DA!, is a US NED-fund recipient, implicating Navalny as an agent of US-funded sedition. The US State Department itself reveals this as they list DA! among many of the “youth movements” they support operating in Russia:
DA!: Mariya Gaydar, daughter of former Prime Minister Yegor Gaydar, leads DA! (Democratic Alternative). She is ardent in her promotion of democracy, but realistic about the obstacles she faces. Gaydar said that DA! is focused on non-partisan activities designed to raise political awareness. She has received funding from the National Endowment for Democracy, a fact she does not publicize for fear of appearing compromised by an American connection.
That this funding is nowhere on NED’s official website and is admittedly withheld from public knowledge by the funding’s recipients indicating that full disclosures are intentionally not being made and that clandestine US funding is most likely much more widespread across Russia’s supposed “opposition.”
Navalny was involved directly in founding a movement funded by the US government and to this day has the very people who funded DA! defending him throughout Western media. The mention of co-founder Mariya Gaydar is also revealing, as she has long collaborated, and occasionally has been arrested with, Ilya Yashin, yet another leader of a NED-funded Russian “activist” opposition group.
Ilya Yashin leads the Moscow branch of the People’s Freedom Party and is a leading member of the “Strategy 31″ campaign whose ranks are filled with activists trained and coordinated by US NED-funded NGOs. Deleted from the official NED.org website was Strategy 31’s US funding:
Moscow Group of Assistance in the Implementation of the Helsinki Accords $50,000
To draw greater attention to the issue of freedom of assembly in Russia and to the “Strategy 31” movement, which seeks to protect this fundamental right. The organization will train a network of regional activists and coordinate their activities through mini-seminars and field visits, and conduct an information campaign through press conferences, posters, and educational handouts pertaining to freedom of assembly, to be distributed to the general public by regional partners.
Also deleted was a NED “Democracy Digest” article titled “Strategy 31: A sign of civil society’s resilience.” In it, the “Moscow Helsinki Group” is explicitly stated as leading Strategy 31 marches and that the group is a “long-time grantee of the National Endowment of Democracy.”
The multiple deletions across NED’s networks of Russian “activists” it is heavily funding and directing was a tell-tale sign of imminent US-backed subversion – the very sort Navalny’s supporters are trying to trigger in the streets of Moscow now.
Indeed, in the wake of Navalny’s sentencing, his supporters have taken to the streets in protest – attempting to trigger a larger and much anticipated “Russian Maidan.” Understanding that Navalny does not represent whatever legitimate grievances the Russian people may have, and instead is exploiting them to push through an agenda engineered and orchestrated by foreign interests will help blunt the impact of any unrest he and his followers attempt to create.
Just as was the case in Hong Kong where the so-called “Occupy Central” movement collapsed almost immediately after it started – upon being exposed as a US State Department operation – Russia’s “maidan” can be exposed and scattered quickly as well. While in any given country there are legitimate grievances, addressing them by taking to the streets led by opposition figures working for foreign interests defeats all principles of self-determination, freedom, and many of the other slogans Navalny’s supporters are likely to shout.