I know we don't normally cover the internal politics of other countries, but this seems important -- especially since Putin has been so intent on meddling in our own country.
I assume you already know who Alexsei Navalny is. While recovering abroad from being poisoned by the FSB, this stunning two-hour documentary was what he and his team were working on. Defiantly, he and his wife returned to Russia, and were arrested on their return. As of this morning, the video had 86 million views:
A YouTube video purporting to show a massive $1.4 billion palace on Russia's Black Sea that allegedly belongs to Russian President Vladimir Putin has racked up more than 54 million views since Tuesday evening.
The nearly two-hour video (Editor's note: Turn on the English subtitles) appears to show drone footage of an extravagant mansion, two helipads, a guest house, and multiple other structures across a sprawling coastal property. It was uploaded by Alexei Navalny, the Russian politician and Putin critic who was nearly killed by a nerve agent attack in Germany last year.
Navalny, who's currently being held in a Moscow jail, alleges that Putin secretly had the Black Sea residence built using illicit funds from his billionaire friends.
That's the short version. The video deconstructs the money laundering behind Putin's rise to the top, and ends with a powerful call to stop patiently accepting corruption and for Russians to take to the streets. They did. Via the New York Times:
Mr. Putin remains in firm control of the levers of power. But Russians unhappy with their president — long a weak, diverse and atomized group — suddenly have a clear leader around whom to rally, and the government appears unsure about how to fight back.
On Saturday, tens of thousands of Russians took to the streets in support of Mr. Navalny in more than 100 Russian cities — protest on a scale unseen in the country in years. Quiet Siberian cities saw crowds in the thousands, while in Moscow, a survey showed that more than one-third of the participants had never protested before.