A March of Right Wing Radicalism

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Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ

5th March, 2016


PI: Last Saturday, a video of the march in memory of Boris Nemtsov, where strong young men beat and kicked an old man, suspectinf him of being a “provocateur”, blew up the Internet. Even if we put aside the political background to this ugly incident (the elderly man refused to shout “Glory to Ukraine” and refused to accept the hero Stepan Bandera), the organizers of the march, who, without the slightest hesitation, let their fists silence the opponent, are clearly subject to the relevant articles of the criminal code. 

The moral aspect of the case also requires careful analysis: The march was directed by the liberals, for whom freedom, including freedom of expression, are an absolute value. However, the beating of the helpless old man by the crowd shows that there are situations when the liberals are ready to ignore this value.

Immediately on the Internet there were calls to find the victim and eyewitnesses of the attack. The famous historian Alexander Dyukov invited all those who have information about the identity of the victim and participants in the attack to contact him via email ([email protected]). And pretty soon the victim of the attack was found. It turns out that the injured man has refused several times to make a statement to the police. 

However, now that the case has been made public, there is hope that a statement will be made. There remains the task of finding those who raised their fists to the old man – to bring them to justice, and not to allow the malignant seeds of Ukrainian Maidan to ascend on the streets of Moscow.

Our writer Vladislav Maltsev conducted his own investigation and found out who the organizers of the march in memory of Boris Nemtsov were, who took part in the attack on an elderly man who refused to support the “pro-ukrainians”. Today we introduce our readers to the results of this investigation.


There were specific “heroes” present at the big scandalous beating and forced expulsion of the elderly man, who refused to shout “Glory to Bandera!”, from the march in memory of Boris Nemtsov. It was dauntlessly, as is customary today, reported on social networks.

“I coordinated one of the group’s security at the Nemtsov march,” Oleg Snov wrote on Facebook . “At the time, before the beginning of the march, my colleagues and I decided to go near the Nadezhda Savchenko columns, because the risk of provocations there will be higher. And so it was.

Literally ten minutes before their banner march, an old man in a grey coat started yelling about our beloved, “hang all you Banderites”, or other words to provoke the crowd”. (That’s a lie – it can be seen and heard clearly from the video that the old man, in response to being asked, in front of the banner saying “Freedom to Nadezhda Savchenko”, whether he will shout “Glory to Ukraine”, he says aloud: “Glory to the patriots of Ukraine, but not to Bandera bots!”).

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“Meanwhile,” further reports Snov, “the man became more aggressive, started pushing people around to separate him from the crowd, (which he only started to do with their yelling) the representatives of the security group, and the people around him.” (Modestly omitting that he was elderly – or any details about his age, and incidentally, in the text nothing is said about the man being pushed and pounced on by several healthy young men.)

“After that, to end the conflict… the guys took him to the police, to the barrier”, – Snov finishes the story about the heroic victory over the pensioner, again, modestly, by omitting that he himself was holding his left arm and dragged him to the barrier (which can be seen in the photos from the event).

As you can see from the profile of the ‘hero’, he is a member of the Federal Political Council of the party “Democratic choice of Russia” and is included in the composition of the Central election Commission of the Democratic coalition “PARNAS“. He frequents opposition rallies and gatherings, and is, in his own words, “a man of right-wing liberal views.”

What is meant by “right-wing views”, is especially necessary to mention. After the initial march in memory of Nemtsov, Snov posted, on March 2nd 2015, a Facebook photo of several of his party members of different ages, which was signed with the caption: “Our security detachments. Part of the security group of Democratic Choice, before the funeral march”. It’s the same “group protection” that kept watch on 27th February.

The name “group protection” sounding like the SS (Schutzstaffel) in German is known in our country, I think even by a schoolboy, not to mention political activists. Maybe Snov just randomly made a bad choice of words? But on 4th November 2014 he tagged his party members in photos where the “right liberal” is, on a Russian march in Lyublino, next to a girl in a T-shirt of the battalion (now regiment) “Azov“, complete with Ukrainian and foreign neo-Nazis. The young lady, Vera Pronina, (in social networks – White Heart) sported a t-shirt with a runic symbol of the “Wolfsangel”, which experts on right-wing extremism and Ukraine (Vyacheslav Likhachev, Anton Shekhovtsov) labelled the symbols of neo-Nazi organizations.

Being a member of “Democratic Choice”, she also actively participates in right-wing events. It is impossible to interpret the photos as a random meeting of strangers – a few months before this Snov was photographed near Pronina at an event of the liberals at the Embassy of Ukraine, in which, as seen in the photos on the account of this young politician, flowers were laid and plants with inscriptions that cross out ‘DPR’ and ‘LPR’. (In principle, everything is logical – “Azov” destroys “Vatnicks” (quilted jackets, Russians) in Donbass, so, why wouldn’t those who fight against the People’s Republics like them?) And there are other photos of Pronina and Snov, including in informal settings. At one of the events this person acts as a bearer of “Democratic Choice”.

Yaroslav Kolobkov, Darya Petrova, Vera Pronina, and Oleg Snov – 4th November 2014, Lyublino.

The attendance at the Russian march in Lyublino, in recent years, turned into a parade for the Pro-Ukrainian far right and other members of the right-wing liberal party. Converting to “Democratic Choice” from “Yabloko” and having led the youth branch of the party, Yaroslav Kolobkov was there on 4th November 2014, together with Snov, and was also in 2015 holding a poster with Pronina. Also tagged next to a fan of “Azov” is the head of the Tver branch of “Democratic Choice” Andrey Urenev, who, by the way, on 27th February this year led one of these Snov “protection groups” at a march in memory of Boris Nemtsov.

Are they amateur young performers? “And here is the video that came out after the Russian march, released by the organizers,” shared on 5th November 2015 by Kolobkov. “There’s even a scene where Sergei Zhavoronkov gives an interview”. Indeed, at 2:07 in the video Zhavoronkov appears for a few seconds, afterwards there is a column of “fighters for the white race” with “colourful” flags and images and Celtic crosses. Zhavoronkov is the Deputy Chairman of the party and, incidentally, also senior researcher of the Gaidar Institute. How the liberal University, regularly receiving the highest officials of the country, relates to such tendencies of its employee, is unknown, but there are no consequences for the results of the activity of Zhavoronkov.

The visits of the Deputy Chairman of “Democratic Choice”, the head of the youth branch of the party, and a member of the political Council of the marches of the far-right occurred almost simultaneously with the trip of the party leader Vladimir Milov in the West in Madrid, where he was received as an honorary guest at the Congress of European people’s parties, and in the US. Such distribution of roles, with some entering into relationships with Western elites who have imposed new sanctions against Russia, others with radical street movements in our country, is dreaming of the overthrow of the government.

The “Svoboda” party played a similar role in Ukraine before the Maidan, standing on the ideological position of national democracy. The C14 group created in Kiev, staffed by people from a number of neo-Nazi and radical parties, targeted working with street movements, particularly with right-wing football fans of FC “Dynamo” (Kiev), which after several years formed the backbone of the impact squad of the Maidan, and then the same for “Azov”.

We hear something like this now. “I, a liberal, really know the right youth better than the “Russian world”, said Zhavoronkov in March 2015. “I’ve told to all of you at a glance that the Russian march will not support war with Ukraine. Fanatics on the police’s side – is it absurd?” One of the members of “Democratic Choice” and participant in the photo shoot of “protection groups”, Anton Glembo, in February 2015, appears in a photo holding a banner with one of the groups of football fans. In the next photo with the same group, Snov is in the photo shoot.

The liberal opposition are trying to mobilize on the streets, and right-wing radicals too. Their sulking over the abolition of article 282 of the criminal code, in the form of Vladimir Ashurkov, is being widely discussed. For the ultra-right, who regularly serve in prison for being in violation of this article, it was important, and not accidental, obviously, that on February 27th, at the march in memory of Nemtsov, a convoy was formed with the banner “Down with political repression” with the number of the aforementioned article crossed out, over which the flags of “Democratic Choice” and “Imperki” flew, despite the fact that the banner specifies the web address of the ethno-political Association “Russians”, which is prohibited for extremism.

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