(Presidentialwire.com)- Vladimir Kara-Murza, the 41-year-old journalist, documentarian, and protege of assassinated opposition leader Boris Nemtsov has been the target of two poisoning attempts by assassins working for Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2015 and 2017. The second poisoning was so severe that physicians had to induce a two-week coma.
On April 11, 2022, he was detained in Moscow for denouncing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine during a speech to the Arizona House of Representatives. Fifteen days in prison served as his punishment. He was then held captive and charged with disseminating false information regarding Putin’s troops.
The Russian government added the further charge of collaboration with an “undesirable” non-governmental group. The holdover of Kara-Murza continued. He was charged with high treason in October of last year. Twenty years is the maximum penalty.
Kara-Murza joined the ranks of at least 19,535 other Russian Federation residents who have been jailed for opposing the war for pointing out the illegality and cruelty of Putin’s unprovoked assault against the sovereign country of Ukraine. Kara-Murza is not an oligarch. He is not an international agent. He’s also not a saboteur. He has British and Russian passports and works as a writer and filmmaker. He is an activist who publicly expressed his opinions on a topic of international relevance, a “crime” that some people find offensive. An opposing view nowadays in Russia makes you an enemy of the state.
Their disobedience demonstrates the enduring yearning for freedom, religious and civic liberty, self-rule, and the rule of law, even in the harshest and most demanding conditions. The voice of this other Russia is Kara-Murza. He represents the free society that is hidden by fear.
Kara-Murza speaks with his family, helpers, and supporters from behind bars. His business staff manages his Twitter account. Pretrial Detention Center 5, Moscow, was the dateline for Kara-writing Murza’s for the Washington Post, but the fact that he could write at all is comforting.
While Kara-Murza was detained last October, his wife Evgenia started screening his third documentary to Western audiences.
My Duty to Not Stay Silent: A Film About Father Georgy Edelstein is the remarkable tale of a philologist turned Orthodox priest whose reluctance to participate in Bolshevik doublethink enraged civil and ecclesiastical authorities.
When Putin is held accountable for his crimes against humanity and Kara-Murza, Putin’s political prisoner, is set free; true justice will have been done.