Thinking Citizen Blog — Alexei Navalny (1976–2024) — Martyr for Freedom, Martyr for Russia

John Muresianu
5 min readFeb 19, 2024

Thinking Citizen Blog — Monday is Foreign Policy Day

Today’s Topic: Alexei Navalny (1976–2024) — Martyr for Freedom, Martyr for Russia

Alexei Navalny died a hero’s death. His memory will dog his nemesis and inspire many. “Even behind bars Navalny was a real threat to Putin, because he was living proof that courage is possible, that truth exists, that Russia could be a different kind of country.

For a dictator who survives thanks to lies and violence, that kind of challenge was intolerable. Now Putin will be forced to fight against Navalny’s memory, and that is a battle he will never win.” (Anne Applebaum, The Atlantic)

What should every thinking citizen remember about Alexei Navalny?

To understand how personal this was for Putin, watch Navalny’s video,“Putin’s Palace: the story of the world’s biggest bribe.” (last link below)

Today, a few quotes and biographical notes.

Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.

NAVALNY QUOTES — THE MEANING OF STRENGTH, THAT SANTA CLAUS FEELING

1. “If they decide to kill me, it means that we are incredibly strong. We need to utilize this power, to not give up, to remember that we are a huge power, that is being repressed by these bad dudes. We don’t realize how strong we actually are. The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing. So don’t be inactive.”

2. “I have grown a beard for the 20 days of my transportation. Unfortunately, there are no reindeer, but there are huge fluffy, and very beautiful shepherd dogs. And the most important thing: I now live above the Arctic Circle. In the village of Kharp on Yamal. The nearest town has the beautiful name of Labytnangi. I don’t say “Ho-ho-ho”, but I do say “Oh-oh-oh” when I look out of the window, where I can see a night, then the evening, and then the night again.

The 20 days of my transportation were pretty exhausting, but I’m still in a good mood, as befits a Santa Claus. They brought me here on Saturday night. And I was transported with such precaution and on such a strange route (Vladimir — Moscow — Chelyabinsk — Ekaterinburg Kirov — Vorkuta — Kharp) that I didn’t expect anyone to find me here before mid-January. That’s why I was very surprised when the cell door was opened yesterday with the words: “A lawyer is here to see you”. He told me that you had lost me, and some of you were even worried.

Thanks very much for your support! … Anyway, don’t worry about me. I’m fine. I’m totally relieved that I’ve finally made it. Thanks again to everyone for your support. And happy holidays!”

3. “Everything has a price, and now, in the spring of 2022, we must pay this price. There’s no one to do it for us. Let’s not “be against the war.” Let’s fight against the war.”

NB: “We — Russia — want to be a nation of peace. Alas, few people would call us that now. But let’s at least not become a nation of frightened silent people. Of cowards who pretend not to notice the aggressive war against Ukraine unleashed by our obviously insane car.”

RAN FOR MAYOR OF MOSCOW IN 2013 RECEIVING 27% OF THE VOTE, BANNED FROM RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA IN 2018 (below photo of pro-Navalny protest in St. Petersburg in 2021)

1. In April 2017 in a chemical attack, he lost 80% of his sight in his right eye.

2. On August 20,2020, poisoned on flight from Tomsk to Moscow. Evacuated to a hospital in Berlin. Pulled out of coma.

3. Putin denied he had anything to do with either event.

PART UKRAINIAN, PART RUSSIAN, A LAWYER, WIFE VOWS TO FIGHT PUTIN

1. He was nominated for the Nobel Peace prize in 2021.

2. He recieved the Andrei Sakharov Prize in 2021 -”the European Parliament’s annual right prize.

3. His wife is Yulia Abromisova (Navalnaya), an economist. Their daughter, Daria, attended Stanford University.

NB: “I want Putin, his entourage, Putin’s friends and his government to know they will pay for what they have done to our country, to our family and my husband. And that day will come very soon.” (Yulia Abromisova/Navalnaya)

Alexei Navalny — Wikipedia

Yulia Navalnaya — Wikipedia

Poisoning of Alexei Navalny — Wikipedia

Risking Arrest, Russians Mourn Navalny in Small Acts of Protest

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2024/02/16/navalny-family-yulia-wife-children/

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2024/02/navalny-death-russia-prison/677485/

Anne Applebaum — Wikipedia

Navalny reveals investigation into ‘Putin’s Palace’ | DW News

Putin’s palace. The story of the world’s biggest bribe

QUOTE OF THE MONTH — Have you made your own Bible yet?

“Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.”

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

My spin — then periodically review, re-rank, and exchange your list with those you love. I call this the “Orion Exchange” because seven is about as many as any human can digest at a time. Game?

ATTACHMENTS BELOW:

#1 A graphic guide to justice (9 metaphors on one page).

#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, (11/17/20)

#3 Israel-Palestine Handout

NB: Palestine Orion (Decision) — let’s exchange Orions, let’s find Rumi’s field (“Beyond all ideas of right and wrong, there is a field. Meet me there” Rumi, 13 century Persian Sufi mystic)

Here is a link to the last four years of posts organized by theme: (including the book on foreign policy)

PDF with headlines — Google Drive

YOUR TURN

Please share the coolest or most important thing you learned in the last week, month, or year related to foreign policy.

Or, even better, the coolest or most important thing you learned in our life related to foreign policy.

This is your chance to make someone else’s day. And to consolidate in your memory something important you might otherwise forget. Or to think more deeply than otherwise about something dear to your heart. Continuity is the key to depth of thought.

The prospect of imminent publication, like hanging and final exams, concentrates the mind. A useful life long habit.

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John Muresianu

Passionate about education, thinking citizenship, art, and passing bits on of wisdom of a long lifetime.