In Russia these days because the topic number one which is most important, war and its consequences to Ukraine but also for Russia is totally banned by Russian authorities for more than one year, said in an exclusive interview for The Geopost Kirill Martynov, Editor-in-chief of the Novaya Gazeta portal.
He pointed out that in just 10 days after the start of the brutal invasion of neighboring Ukraine, the Russian authorities banned every independent media outlet in Russia, as well as destroyed hundreds of independent, regional and national media outlets.
“Hundreds of professional Russian journalists with a large audience, independent people, they find themselves abroad these days just because the Russian government has imposed this kind of military censorship, because if you ever talk about the war, you can only repeat what propaganda and official sources said and they are not only the part of the conflict, they are liars, they lied from the start”, he emphasized.
Martynov added that Russia needs independent politicians to inspire people and make them open their eyes and see the truth of what is happening in Ukraine and its consequences.
“I hope that we will never again in our lifetime face another Putin, another leader, another Stalin, another Tsar, whoever he is. But of course it is possible, and that would be the worst future for Russia itself and again for Russia’s and Europe’s neighbors,” Martynov told The Geopost.
Full interview below:
Geopost: Mr. Martynov, you are a journalist, can you please tell us how is it to be a journalist now in Russia and in opposite of Putin?
It’s my pleasure to talk with you, honestly speaking, it’s impossible to be journalist in Russia these days because the topic number one which is most important, war and its consequences to Ukraine but also for Russia is totally banned by Russian authorities for more than one year and that is the main reason why we find ourselves in exile.
Hundreds, and this is a real number, hundreds of professional Russian journalists with huge audience, with independent minds, they find themselves abroad these days just because the Russian government provided this kind of military censorship, because if you ever speak about war, you can only repeat what propaganda and official sources said and they are not only the part of the conflict, they are liars, they lied from the start.
When I still worked in Russia, in Moscow during first week of the war, for example, I provided an official request to the Russian Ministry of Defense “How many soldiers you have already lost?” and they just never answered, they don’t have any numbers of casualties in Russian army, even if a Russian journalist asks officially. So, they just stopped providing any real loses and they only support some propaganda stuff and this is reality of this country, because I think that the war was not so popular from the beginning because millions of people came to us to read real news about war and after that, just in 10 days after the beginning of the war, they totally banned any independent media in Russia, they destroyed hundreds of independent media, on regional level and on the national level.
Geopost: Do you believe that after Putin will come another Putin and does Russian opposition have enough power to make any changes?
I hope that Russia is not a prisoner of its history, that means that it would be very hard to avoid this scenario where next government after Putin will be another younger Putin and everything will be like a next circle of history, but I think we have chance to avoid this and one of the reasons why I think that we have this chance is that this was enormous in terms of level of war crimes from the one side and accessibility of information about this, so, for example if you reduce the level of censorship in the country it would immediately provoke a huge discussion, why all this can be possible, people start to ask each other, what did you do during the war and why you did this and I think we have a huge internal conflict inside Russia and it will be very hard to produce another so-called national leader after this conflict.
I honestly believe that we will have no national leaders on some official office at least.
We need some independent politicians to inspire people and to make people open their eyes and see the truth about this war and its consequences, but I hope that we will never face another Putin in our life, another leader, another Stalin, another Tsar, whatever it means, but it’s possible and I think that it will be the worst future for Russia itself and again for neighbors of Russia and Europe.
Geopost: Why Putin has interest in Serbia who wants to create trouble in other states?
As far as I can understand these people like Putin and his inner circle around him, they share this kind of worldview in which there are several great powers like US, China for sure and Russia and these great powers should divide the whole world like the spheres of influence, and if you are not working for president Putin, that means that you are American spy or maybe Chinese spy, but it’s hard to imagine you and me are Chinese spies, we don’t like dictatorship, but he really believes that people around the world, countries don’t have their will, they are just puppets of some great powers, so they believe that they need to control Serbia for example, and if some neighboring countries are against this control, that means that they are enemies, they are controlled by United States, they are their puppets and you have to destroy them.
This is very stupid and very archaic worldview, these people just don’t have education, they think they live in 19th century, great empires which share and possess the whole world. That is basically what they want and they really believe that if you or me do something that means that someone controls us and that all people are servants to great leaders like president Putin, and if you are against him, that means that you are enemy and the same is about the countries. /Geopost/