Monday, October 14, 2019

Yakutsk Shaman Announces Plans for New March on Moscow

Paul Goble

            Staunton, October 10 – Saying that he has been a victim of punitive psychiatry like that of the late USSR, Shaman Aleksandr Gabyshev says that he plans to launch a second march on Moscow, this time in the company of his supporters, but that it will be completely peaceful, that Vladimir Putin will not be harmed but that the Russian leader should leave office voluntarily.

            At the same time, in a new video to his followers, the shaman said that his home republic of Sakha will soon become “a world center of political transformations,” one that will result not only in a revival of national traditions but changes in the culture and politics of people far from that Far Eastern republic (

            Gabyshev dismissed the findings of state psychiatrists that he is “insane” and “incompetent” and said that he would complete his original march but this time in the company of his supporters who will also be his protectors.  And he issued a direct appeal to Putin:

“Leave, Vladimir Vladimirovich. Voluntarily. This retirement will be good for Russia, for Sakha and for the entire world … Revenge is a sin. Forgiveness … and if you voluntarily leave, the demon which I consider you to be will experience forgiveness. I will personally preserve you and ensure your security … No earthly court must judge you. I will follow this myself. God himself, the Heavenly Court, will judge you. And how that will take place is unknown to us. Wait quietly. And await the Heavenly Court.”

            Gabyshev says that “all ordinary people of Russia” are behind him, that he doesn’t fear being accused of extremism, and that he will begin his new march where the first was interrupted by his arrest, at the border of Buryatia and Irkutsk Oblast.  He called on officials in the regions to join with him rather than feeling constrained by “the power of the demon.”

            Whether the shaman will be able to resume his march is far from clear: the police powers of his opponents remain very large. But Gabyshev clearly understands the power of social media and the desire of Russians for some sort of miracle to allow them to escape their current predicaments – and he is offering himself as a miracle worker.

            For a discussion of that set of attitudes and the shaman’s role in them, see

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