Anyone who has ever encountered an anti-crisis response knows that speed here decides, if not everything, then a lot. While the party that has come under fire checks every word and thinks how best to formulate its answer, negative information spreads and multiplies losses. As a result, accusations become part of objective reality, and counter-arguments look like only an attempt to save face in a lost game.
On January 19, Alexei Navalny, who barely returned from Germany and immediately thundered behind bars, published his investigation of the “Putin’s Palace”. It is claimed that “the most secret and guarded facility in Russia” is located near Gelendzhik on Cape Idokopas. The area of the main house of the residence is over 17 thousand square meters. Inside, the house is decorated with gold and marble, the building has a table for 4 million rubles, a casino, a theater and a swimming pool. An underground tunnel leads to the sea from the “palace”. The authors of the publication estimated the cost of construction and arrangement of the residence at 100 billion rubles.
We will not talk here about the reliability of the information presented in Navalny’s investigation (or the one who wrote the text for him) – the effect that the appearance of this video produced is more important. By the time the article was published, he had gained 86 million views (although not everyone believes that the case did not go without “cheats”) and became one of the factors that provoked protests and clashes with law enforcement officials throughout the country.
Many noted that youth are the core of protest now. And Vladimir Putin for the first time publicly spoke about this – already legendary – building in a conversation with students, timed to coincide with their “professional holiday.” We waited for a reaction from the head of state for six days. And she was generally predictable. “Nothing that is indicated there as my property, neither me, nor my close relatives belongs and never did,” the head of state said.
He noted that information about his “palace” has been discussed for ten years (and this is true), and Navalny and his assistants, taking advantage of a convenient opportunity (apparently, the arrest of the “Berlin patient”), “put everything together and decided to brainwash our citizens “. In general, Vladimir Vladimirovich did not say anything new: his press secretary Dmitry Peskov used to say approximately the same and approximately the same words.
Probably, the president, who in every possible way demonstrates the insignificance of Navalny and has never called him by name, seemed right to simply ignore another investigation of the annoying “blogger.” Thus, Putin was probably trying to keep his distance, to prevent his opponent from reaching his level, to deny him political subjectivity.
The problem is that the part of Russian politics about Navalny does not seem to be very much controlled by the Kremlin, and no matter how much longer the head of state comes up with nicknames for his opponent, in Russia and the world it is this “blogger” who retains the status of a leader the so-called non-systemic opposition. And when he publishes information capable of influencing the pre-election layouts and ratings (even if it is 10 or 20 years old, it doesn’t matter anymore), one should act as in a crisis – quickly and clearly. If you react to each such attack as if nothing happened, one of the subsequent ones can become the last with all the ensuing and very sad consequences.