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A Russian journalist has information that Moscow is actively trying to recruit people to administer the territory it has taken from Ukraine.
And it’s not just about looking for someone. He begs the military retirees to come back for the task.
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“It looks like they don’t have enough resources to run these occupied territories. And that’s why they’re looking for, trying to hire 60-year-old retirees. And it looks like they’re in trouble,” said Roman Anin at Fox News. .
Anin is the editor of “Important Stories” or “IStories,” part of the audacious and mostly now exiled independent media world in Russia.
He says potential recruits are offered salaries twice the national average, or about $500 a month.
“Since they have problems in these territories,” says Anin, “in terms of managing people, organizing these referendums, they need people with military experience to work in what is in fact a civilian job. “.
“Histories” has been declared an “undesirable organization” by the Russian government, which means that those who collaborate with the organization can be fined or imprisoned. The outlet affixes a warning label to its stories warning that posting stories could be a criminal offence.
“Imagine a journalist who comes to his audience and says, ‘Please don’t repost us. Please don’t spread the news.’ But read and think, that’s what we have to tell our readers,” said Anin, whose team, like most other freelance journalists in Russia, had to leave after the war started.
Anin already had a case pending against him for some of his investigative work. He said there were basically three options.
“Stay in Russia and go to jail. Stay in Russia and stop working. And the third option is to immigrate and continue your work,” Amin explained. “We decided all three options were wrong. But we thought, ‘You know, we can’t stay silent in these times. “”
Russians who speak out are not safe at home, he says, but are often not welcome in other countries either.
“Having a Russian passport is a big challenge,” says Anin. “In other parts of the world, sanctions do not distinguish between journalists and propagandists.”
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We see that the police are so quick to arrest anyone who utters even a whisper of dissent – even those who walk out with a blank sign or simply say “Nyet”.
Anin was asked why he thought Russian President Putin was so paranoid.
“I think the main reason is because of Putin’s background. The secret service people – the KGB – it’s their modus operandi. It’s something hard-wired into their brains,” Amin said. “They don’t trust anyone. They don’t believe anyone can have their own beliefs.”
Anin says Putin and company believe those who are not ideologically in tune with the Kremlin are controlled by the CIA or the US State Department.
“The other reason (for the paranoia) is that they are getting older,” he added. “They’ve been in power for over twenty years. You lose your sense of reality when you’re constantly surrounded by an army of bodyguards and constantly living in a bunker.”
“You know, I think it’s a youth war against the Soviets,” added Anin, born in the last days of the USSR. “The average age of Ukrainian politicians is around 40. The average age of Russian politicians is 67.”
Anin would not speculate on what will happen on Monday, when Russia scores victory over Nazi Germany in World War II. It is increasingly said that Putin’s Russia has modeled its identity on this part of its past, and that the more it perpetuates a false narrative about the presence of the Nazis and the genocides of the last days, the more it tarnishes the glory of the past heroism.
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“They never talk about the future,” Anin says of the government, “because there is nothing they can offer the Russian public or other people around the world. there’s nothing behind this idea of the ‘Russian world’. You know, that’s why they’re so focused on May 9 and other symbols of the Soviet Union.”