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Vladimir Putin: Putin's Palace

Richard Booth

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Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny released a 2 hour documentary/video on YouTube about a week ago that is making big waves in Russia--there were protests in over 30 cities this weekend, with more than 3,000 people arrested. People are protesting because Navalny was arrested when his flight landed in Moscow this weekend and due to the content of the documentary film which is outraging any Russian who has viewed it.

The video is titled, in Russian "Дворец для Путина. История самой большой взятки" which translates loosely to Palace for Putin. The History of the Biggest Bribe.  

The video documents Vladimir Putin's corruption, kickbacks, bribes, and shady business deals he's made since working in the St. Petersberg's mayor's office in the late 90s.

Part of this corruption is Putin's funding of a massive $1.4 BILLION dollar palace. The palace is owned by an array of holding companies and Putin business associates, and the documentary lays out the details of the palace and it's ownership. This place is massive, covering just over 168 acres right off the Black Sea. The land around the palace is owned by the Russian security service, the FSB, and they also restrict the airspace over the palace. 

I strongly recommend people watch this video, it's incredibly detailed and interesting. It shows a level of corruption unparalleled by any world leader. 

It is in Russian but it has English subtitles. I have attached a link to the subtitle transcript below as well if someone just wants to read.



https://www.dropbox.com/s/s3vjv1dsbqjxvfu/Дворец для Путина. История самой большой взятки-English.srt?dl=0


Here is a good story on the palace published by The Drive a few days ago:




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An excellent piece from The New Yorker about Putin's palace and Alexei Navalny by Masha Gessen (a staff writer at The New Yorker, the author of eleven books, including “Surviving Autocracy” and “The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia,” which won the National Book Award in 2017).


"What was Putin thinking? Why has he poured unimaginable resources into a palace that he will never use—more than a billion dollars, spent in extreme and resource-intensive secrecy, and, apparently, many hours of discussing, drawing up, imagining a regal monstrosity with two helipads and an underground hockey rink? He cannot use it while he is President, because that would expose him as the owner. Perhaps he dreams of retiring there after his Presidency ends. But, if Putin doesn’t die in office, he will be unable to stay in Russia without facing prosecution for extensive abuses of power. The desperate determination with which he holds on to power indicates that he understands this. On some level, not too far below the surface, he must know that he will never be able to use his palace."

"Putin’s palace is a toy—a gigantic Lego project of a deranged, obsessive mind. In his film, Navalny stresses that some of the most absurd elements of the project—such as a seven-hundred-euro toilet brush for a bathroom in one of the vineyard houses on the outskirts of the palace complex—serve no practical function; they were placed there in case Putin ever has the occasion to acquaint himself with that implement in that particular room in that particular corner of an estate the size of a small European country. In fact, the whole project was built not for pleasure, and certainly not for show, but to satisfy some insatiable fantasy of wealth. Putin will never sit on the twenty-six-thousand-dollar leather couch or dine at the fifty-thousand-dollar table."


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