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Jul 20, 2017
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Russian Opposition Leader Accused of Being Non-Patriot and Non-Nationalist

#6136 | 02:44
Source: Rain TV (Russia)

In a recent TV debate, Russian nationalist Igor Strelkov accused opposition leader Alexey Navalny, who has proclaimed himself a presidential candidate although he is not officially recognized as one, of not being a true patriot or nationalist. Navalny himself claimed to support nationalism, and said that the Russians "constitute the major divided nation in Europe." During the debate, which aired on the independent liberal TV Rain channel on July 20, the two participants accused one another of being worse than Putin himself, while both claimed to oppose Putin's policies. Live debates of this nature are highly irregular in Russia, and it garnered widespread public interest, while being ignored by federal TV channels.


Igor Strelkov: I have come to the debate to order to look into Alexey (Navalny's) eyes, and to understand whether he means what he says and says what he means. Unfortunately, he says what he means. Unfortunately, he is no nationalist. Nationalism is in his past. I'm sad to say that it is doubtful whether he is in fact a patriot - we did not have time to discuss Crimea - since he is ready to question to whom Crimea belongs.




Moreover, I do not understand how he is planning to uproot corruption, since fighting corruption with the harshest legal measures, but without eliminating its underlying causes, just will not do the job.




There is a very high probability, Alexey, that if you come to power, you will continue the same line taken by Boris Yeltzin and later by Vladimir Putin. You will be driven by the same Western system, which has no room for Russia, except as a supplier of natural resources.




Alexey Navalny: I am running for the presidency. I am looking at the big picture. As a candidate, I see cities with no roads, hospitals with no bandages, school buildings that are falling apart, thousands of schools that are being closed every year. We have 20 million beggars and a (sense) of total hopelessness. The life expectancy (in Russia) is awfully low. You say that people are being killed in Donbass (East Ukraine). I say that thousands are dying in our hospitals on a daily basis, because in Russia 2017, they cannot get normal medical care. That is why, for me, patriotism represents action, aimed at the wealth and wellbeing of Russian citizens and people here and now.




I don't want to live in a delusion of immediately uniting with Belarus, while occupying (other countries) and absorbing (other territories). We should, of course, help the Russians, and we should understand that the Russians constitute the major divided nation in Europe. But helping people now means no war, but instead, fighting corruption and strengthening the economy.



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