How does the Kremlin spell Khordorkovsky? N-a-v-a-l-n-y

For starters we might point out that these kind of silly games had all but ended during the presidency of Dmitry Medvedev. Those who wrongly claim that Medvedev was nothing more than a puppet, a placeholder, and a weak substitute need to do some reevaluation of their words. You were just flat out wrong.

So, how does the Kremlin spell Khordorkovsky? Sources close to opposition figure Aleksei Navalny are concerned that he is being set up to become the next Khordorkovsky as this week criminal charges are being prepared by prosecutors. Don’t worry about what kind of charges, if charges are filed those in power will have come up with something by the time the announcement is made.

Navalny arrested after December protests over Duma elections. (Photo: Aleksei Usachev.)

Some say the charges are of spying for Sweden. Please, for the love of God don’t tell Peter the Great! Another is that he financially aided a Kremlin controlled oil company to rake in illegal profits. Really? Since when has somebody in Russia been jailed for helping the Kremlin make money?

Sadly, both opposition leaders and international business investors say that a hallmark of Russia from 2000-2008 was that the threat of fabricated charges were a very personal reality for those who dared to oppose official state thinking. Navalny is himself an attorney and told RIA news that such “is an inescapable risk — it’s not even a risk but a fact of life for any person who carries out independent civil and political work, and even more so for someone conducting investigations. I understood this risk from the very beginning.”

For his part, Navalny says he has no intention of leaving Russia to avoid potential criminal charges and promised to defend himself vigorously if charged. Navalny’s campaign against official corruption has made him a folk hero among ordinary Russians.

Perhaps suspecting that his time behind bars may continue indefinitely, Navalny asked his readers to continue posting findings on his RosPil website by pointing out suspicious-looking state tenders. The website allows anyone to publish information detailing corrupt practices and discuss it.

Prosecutors have said that if filed, charges against Navalny could carry a two-year prison sentence. Then of course just like Khordorkovsky, we shouldn’t be surprised upon learning that such a sentence is only the beginning.