Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Navalny Case Shows Why Corporal Punishment Should be Restored in Russia, Butina Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, April 3 – Maria Butina, who first attracted attention for serving as an unregistered foreign agent of Russia in the US because of her involvement with gun rights groups, may now garner even more for her advocacy of the restoration of corporal punishment in Russia and presumably elsewhere as well.

            She recently visited the prison where Aleksey Navalny is confined and suggested that the conditions under which he is being kept are anything but severe, allowing her to argue that everyone would be better off if the Russian authorities restored corporal punishment rather than keep people at taxpayers’ expense in jail for long period (t.me/mariabutina/2717).

            Although she doesn’t say so in terms, presumably Butina would like to see such punishment visited on Navalny and others like him who have crossed the current powers that be in Russia (newizv.ru/news/society/03-04-2021/a-ne-pora-li-vernut-rozgi-mariya-butina-predlagala-vvodit-telesnogo-nakazaniya).

            Such an approach, one that would throw Russia back even further than it has gone under Vladimir Putin, would, Butina continues, “be more humane that isolating people for many years” and would be more effective in getting them to change.

            In fact, as journalist Mikhail Pozharsky reports, Butina has long been an advocate of such things. When she headed a gun rights group in Russia a decade ago, she not only supported authoritarian dictators like Pinochet but called for the restoration of corporal punishment (facebook.com/michael.pojarsky/posts/4004777042913219).           

He exhumes a Butina post (https://butina.livejournal.com/308642.html) that if anything goes even further in its celebration of beatings as the best way to deal with criminals of all kinds and that suggests the woman who worked as a Russian agent in the US and now as a commentator for Russian television passionately believes in that method of punishment.

That there are people in every country who believe in going back to such barbaric practices is unfortunately no surprise. But for such individuals to be welcomed into the elite and used for government propaganda is frightening because it suggests that what Butina is saying reflects the attitudes if not yet the actions of the regime doing so. 

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