Russian pop icon Pugacheva rebels
Alla Pugacheva, a pop star and icon in Russia since the 1970s, has released a statement requesting that she be classified as a "foreign agent" in solidarity with her husband, comedian Maxim Galkin, who has been put on Russia's list of foreign agents. Her husband is an honest patriot who wishes his country "freedom of expression and an end to our boys dying for illusory aims which are turning our country into a pariah state", she said.
Sowing seeds of doubt in people's minds
Kirill Martynov, editor-in-chief of Novaya Gazeta Europe, defends Pugacheva against those say her anti-war appeal was too timid:
“This criticism is justified, but there may be reasons beyond caution for the rhetoric Pugacheva chose to use. The appeal to 'stop the death of our boys' and return to peaceful life is one that millions will find understandable. These people may believe the state propaganda and think Ukraine is 'a puppet of the West' and 'we were provoked into this war'. Nevertheless, Pugacheva has found words that can sow seeds of doubt in their minds. Such seeds could even destroy the conformists' support for the war.”
Whose voice counts?
La Vanguardia wonders what effect the growing criticism of the Kremlin at home may have:
“Last week Russia was criticised by countries that are supposedly its allies. ... These accusations, which are growing worldwide, have their counterpart in Russia. Yesterday it became known that the singer Alla Pugacheva has spoken out against the invasion of Ukraine. ... But it is also true that since Putin came to power two decades ago the Kremlin has been firmly in the hands of the KGB, now FSB, and allied oligarchs. Setbacks on the battlefield could increase discontent in the president's inner circle, from where, when the time comes, they could manoeuvre against him.”