They have all been so active and I have encountered some interesting new ones, but first as a preface Vlad Vexler, Russian-born but living in London and Oxford-educated — a political philosopher offering some perspective.
Next thoughts on the vloggers and YouTube from Niki, who has now left Russia. I remarked: “Niki sums up why I so cherish vloggers like him, Roman, Zack and all the others I have been sharing — which I only do after careful evaluation of their various qualities and reliability. This is from the interview ‘Half Russian’ uploaded September 13.”
And speaking of laughter….
That is a long live vlog during which Zack translates and comments on Putin’s speech and the whole annexation “ceremony”. It is one of the best versions of this I have yet encountered!
A comment on YouTube: “What’s extraordinary is how Zack has maintained utter independence of thought, has lived in Russia just about all of his life and yet even before doing his semester abroad could recognize the propaganda, see through it, and maintain his mental balance. I’d like to understand better how he managed to do that.”
And my friend Rosemary on FB: “Zack’s in-depth and perceptive commentaries are so impressive. His articulate analysis of Putin and the utter devastation wreaked not only in Ukraine but on the lives of so many Russians is amazing for one so young. Even though he says towards the end of the vlog of his language that he’s f****d after listening to so much Putin bullshit, his disarming frankness, is so honest and direct. His unrestrained laughter when Putin and all his heavies clasped hands was lovely to watch.”
Roman the Russian is just brilliant and so real!
Most recent is Artyom from 1420 doing a vox pop on the streets of Moscow. I commented on FB: “Sad but not unexpected that so many believe the utter travesty of world history in the last several centuries peddled by Putin and even more sadly by some commentators in the West! It is an utterly twisted, tendentious and mendacious bastard child of legitimate postcolonial readings of the past. The explanation of why the US became involved in WW2 is absurd and totally without merit. Then there are bastardised versions of common American ultra-Riight memes and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories about George Soros.
“Artyom (the interviewer as Daniil is now in Italy) surely does not believe any of it but keeps a surface neutrality to get people to talk. Brave of him to be walking around Moscow right now even asking such a question.”
On Daniil — update 8.30 am my time 3rd October
This has just appeared on his Instagram:
Update 3rd October 2.30 pm
That post has been removed. Do keep in mind that Meta — who own Instagram and Facebook — is a proscribed “extremist organisation” in Russia.
Now Artyom’s 1420 post:
And I have not even touched the new vlogs I have seen lately, or the Ukraine ones! Later….
Two more between yesterday 2.30 pm and 7.00 am today
Nik has been vlogging from Russia for just two weeks.
And Niki fornerly in St Petersburg but now in Istanbul was live just now telling his story.
A week ago I decided to leave Russia and start a new life somewhere else. In this video I share details behind that journey: the most expensive flight in my life so far, a new destination, and some other personal details.
Istanbul for now, Southeast Asia for a bit later – I’ll surely show you every single destination I go. Thank you for being with me…