They rifled through everything, every wardrobe, in the toilet, in the refrigerator. They searched under the beds. Were they looking for our secrets?Russian Left Front party leader Sergei Udaltsov • Discussing the searches that Russian police did on both his home, and those of other opposition figures, on Monday morning. Political foes of Vladimir Putin, who protested heavily ahead of his election as president, are now finding themselves the subject of major crackdowns. Putin recently signed a law increasing fines for public street demonstrations, among other things. ”What we are witnessing today is in essence the year 1937,” said activist Yevgenia Chirikova. “It is an absolutely clear scenario in which the authorities scare the people.”
» But Putin’s shrugging it off: Despite allegations suggesting that Putin benefitted from a corrupt electoral process, Putin’s shrugging it off as a part of the political process. “Of course there were irregularities,” he allegedly told an audience of lawyers. “They must all be weeded out and explained so that everybody understands everything.” Regarding the dispersal of protests, Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs turned the West’s own protests back on them, saying the dispersal was ”many times more humane than what we saw with the dispersal of ‘Occupy Wall Street’ and the tent camps in Europe.”
The point of elections is that the outcome should be uncertain. This was not the case in Russia. There was no real competition and abuse of government resources ensured that the ultimate winner of the election was never in doubt.Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe coordinator Tonino Picula • Discussing the results of the Russian presidential election, which strongly favored Vladimir Putin. Picula suggests that the election was “clearly skewed” in Putin’s favor. With 99 percent of the votes counted, Putin gathered more than 64 percent of the vote — this despite passionate, widespread dissent against the Russian leader. Another voting watchdog, Golos, said it had received 3,000 voting fraud reports. What do you think? Does it looks like the election was rigged?
The problem is they lack a consolidated program, as well as clear and comprensible ways of achieving their goals, which aren’t clear either. They also lack people who are capable of doing something concrete.Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin • Dismissing his opponents as disorganized and leaderless in comments made days after large-scale Christmas weekend protests in Moscow. Putin, who is running for president in March (after skipping a term due to term limits), says those elections should be transparent and fair, but outright dismissed protester desires for a recount in the Russian parliamentary elections earlier this month. “As a candidate, I don’t need any vote-rigging,” he said. “I want the election to be maximally transparent. I want to rely on people’s will, on people’s trust, and it makes no sense to work if it’s missing.” source (via • follow)