Navalny’s Death and Western Hypocrisy

Western media and political figures have solved the case!

A jailed opposition politician in Russia, Alexander Navalny, has apparently died in prison. How did he die? Was he murdered, or was it natural causes? Suicide? I do not know, and neither do you. But Putin’s many critics—essentially the entire global neoliberal establishment—have declared him and the Russian government responsible before the body is even cold.

This is all very convenient for Putin’s critics, but it begs the question of why Putin or anyone in the Russian government would do this since Navalny was already in prison serving a long sentence. Just last week, Putin concluded an effective and substantive interview with Tucker Carlson. He showed himself to be a rational and intelligent person. The Russian army also won the Battle of Adveedka, another last stand by the Ukrainian armed forces similar to Bachmut.

Nalvany’s death comes right as the Munich Security Conference is beginning and right after the “space nukes” story left most western audiences, including the American Congress, unimpressed. Right on time, Nalvany’s widow happened to be at the Munich Security Conference with a ready-made speech on the meaning of his death. Then all the pro-war fanatics intoned that Putin was responsible and that Nalvany’s death should galvanize support for more funding of Ukraine’s suicidal war to recover Crimea.

Insiders Desperate for Public Support of New Cold War

Foreign policy decisionmakers—and specifically the evil and grotesque Victoria Nuland—have been trying for years to meme a new cold war into existence, but the American people are not buying it. Indeed, our people are not even the same people as yesteryear. Their character has been radically transformed by decades of mass immigration and years of anti-American propaganda in schools. Younger generations, which include a large plurality of newcomers and their children, simply are not as moved by the blood and soil appeals that got young men to fight in Korea, Vietnam, and the Middle East.

Even legacy Americans who still feel patriotic balk at a new multiyear struggle for world supremacy with the added bonus of heightened risks of nuclear war. The failed and dishonest campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, coupled with the realization that our leaders are hostile to ordinary Americans and also profoundly incompetent, have encouraged extreme wariness.

When fear does not work, the leadership class’s rhetoric appeals to our political morality. We are supposed to hate Russia because it is authoritarian, illiberal, hostile to gay rights, and undemocratic. Even if all of these charges against Russia were true, I don’t really care, just as I don’t care about the internal politics of China or Saudi Arabia or Turkey. The idealists’ mistake is to presume our internal political values are ones that we must impose forcefully on the rest of the world.

I care about countries, including their internal politics, only to the extent they may affect me and my country. They are allowed to run themselves as they see fit. True, I wouldn’t want to live in North Korea or Saudi Arabia, but that does not mean what they do inside their own borders is any of my business.

Who Are We to Judge?

Critics implicitly assume that we are this pristine, well-ordered, corruption-free model of democracy that has the moral authority to condemn Russia. Are we? Today, in our country, hundreds of people are being sent to prison for many years for parading in the Capitol, the people’s house, protesting the fishiest election in my lifetime. Draconian punishments of 16 years in prison are happening for nonviolent offenders, even as criminals are being given lesser sentences in the same jurisdiction for stabbing people to death.

The war party presumes to know what Russia and the rest of the world want: to be just like us! But today’s Russia is not the Soviet Union, and it has elections, private property, and a growing middle class. In other words, it has already emulated the best of the West’s political exports.

Also, Russia’s experience with westernization has been a mixed bag. Critics assume Putin’s support comes from a small group of wealthy oligarchs, but the oligarchs arose during Yeltsin’s rule, when ex-communist insiders exploited western-led privatization efforts to become filthy rich. Putin’s sustained support is better understood as something quite predictable because he restored law and order and national pride after Russia’s hellish, near-anarchic experience in the 1990s.

In addition to anticorruption activism, Navalny was, until recently, an ultranationalist. He also might have been CIA-funded like so many of the NGOs America deploys to interfere in Russia’s elections. Just like the Ukrainian neo-Nazis used in 2014 to bring down the pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovich, the CIA has little compunction about using people with retrograde political values against a perceived enemy. The CIA funded Islamists, including al Nusra and ISIS, to undermine the Assad regime in Syria.

Western critics naively seem to assume that because someone is an “opposition leader,” he must be all rainbows and puppy dogs.

Sometimes People in the Opposition Commit Real Crimes

It is also remarkable to hear so many people declare Navalny was definitely innocent and that all the charges he faced were trumped up. He was only sent to prison after several suspended sentences.

By way of analogy, the story of his death dropped the same day one of the main witnesses against Joe Biden was arrested for allegedly lying to the FBI. I do not know if Nalvany did anything illegal, or, for that matter, if the guy who testified against Biden was guilty of lying, but anyone who says confidently that there is no way either of them did anything wrong is just guessing.

It is possible, like the many American congressmen who have been indicted over the years, that Navalny had beliefs counter to the party in power and also committed a crime. Being a Putin opponent does not give one the right to break the law. And there is extensive corruption in Russia, with complainers often being those deprived of their cut. There seems to be very little factual analysis behind the claims of his innocence or about the cause of his death, just overconfident declarations by established Putin haters.

Jeffrey Epstein, a man with dirt on almost every major figure in American finance and politics, died under mysterious circumstances in a federal prison. He supposedly committed suicide, but a lot of powerful people had ample motives to make him disappear. The same people who dismissed these speculations as baseless conspiracy theories now confidently declare Navalny was murdered and also who murdered him.

If cui bono analysis has value in exposing something fishy in the death of Epstein, isn’t Nalvany’s death at this time—after Putin’s recent interview with Tucker Carlson, the Russian victory in Adveedka, and an ongoing debate about how much funding to give to Ukraine—work more to the benefit of Putin’s opponents? Could someone affiliated with the West have killed him? Could he have killed himself out of despair or even idealism in order to make things difficult for the Russian government?

Domestically, you can tell what the leftists are up to by what they say about their opponents. When the left was wringing its hands over censorship, democracy, and Russian collusion, the Deep State colluded with social media monopolies to censor opponents, worked to remove Trump from several state ballots to save democracy, and literally colluded with Russian and other foreign sources to gin up a defamatory dossier to permit spying on the Trump campaign.

Today, Trump faces ruinous fines from a civil suit brought by the State of New York, in addition to facing multiple criminal prosecutions crafted to influence the election and remove him from the ballot. In a similar case of turnabout in Ukraine, American blogger Gonzalo Lira died in Ukrainian custody last month at the age of 55, and hardly anyone uttered a word of protest.

When the left says Putin killed a political opponent in order to subvert democracy, you should start wondering what they have in store for Donald Trump and his supporters here at home.

Christopher Roach is an adjunct fellow of the Center for American Greatness and an attorney in private practice based in Florida. He is a double graduate of the University of Chicago and has previously been published by The Federalist, Takimag, Chronicles, the Washington Legal Foundation, the Marine Corps Gazette, and the Orlando Sentinel. The views presented are solely his own.

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About Christopher Roach

Christopher Roach is an adjunct fellow of the Center for American Greatness and an attorney in private practice based in Florida. He is a double graduate of the University of Chicago and has previously been published by The Federalist, Takimag, Chronicles, the Washington Legal Foundation, the Marine Corps Gazette, and the Orlando Sentinel. The views presented are solely his own.

Photo: TOPSHOT - Opposition leader Alexei Navalny is escorted out of a police station on January 18, 2021, in Khimki, outside Moscow, following the court ruling that ordered him jailed for 30 days. Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny on Monday urged Russians to stage mass anti-government protests during a court hearing after his arrest on arrival in Moscow from Germany. (Photo by Alexander NEMENOV / AFP) (Photo by ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP via Getty Images)

Notable Replies

  1. My level of cynicism about US interests is now so high, when I read about Navalny’s death I immediately thought we probably did it - Cui bono. Thats not to say we did in fact do it, I just consider that one of the most likely probabilities. The timing of this is a little too helpful for the blob/neocon war machine that is in desperation mode for Ukraine funding for me to accept the official narrative.

  2. If the federal government predicts blue skies and warm breezes for tomorrow, I’m carrying an umbrella and heavy jacket.

  3. The US is a police state and is rapidly becoming even more of one.Look at the treatment of the January 6 protestors and the use of lawfare against Trump).The FBI,CIA and DOJ remind me of the communist Stasi.I could care less about Navalny.He is being used to whip up anti-Russian hysteria.

  4. Avatar for Alecto Alecto says:

    My one criticism is that nowhere are Republicans mentioned for the duty they owed, and their failure to perform that duty owed to Americans and that duty was to prevent Meat Puppet from being fraudulently installed in an office to which he was never elected. They failed, but they aren’t paying the price. We are, and for that, they are and will always be as guilty as Democrats in the downfall of the Republic. Can’t have it both ways.

    Political parties are dangerous to liberty. They seek only power on a perpetual basis to control the wealth of this country and it’s time someone pointed out that what we have in Democrats and Republicans is a ready-made disaster for citizens, their rights and property.

    Mental incompetents like Mitch McConnell and Joe Biden are easy targets and should be targeted, but who is responsible for their incumbency? Party machines. I believe most citizens in the country want the same things: liberty, peace and prosperity that follows. Political parties prevent citizens from restoring republican government. The corruption is so complete there is no redeeming these people or parties.

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