show episodes
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Meduza’s first English-language podcast, The Naked Pravda highlights how our top reporting intersects with the wider research and expertise that exists about Russia. The broader context of Meduza’s in-depth, original journalism isn’t always clear, which is where this show comes in. Here you’ll hear from the world’s community of Russia experts, activists, and reporters about the issues at the heart of Meduza’s stories.
 
OLYMPIQUE is a DJ, a megamixmaker, a RavePopStar. His music style is the mixture of classical House with the energy of popular Big Room and new EDM tendencies. In one word he is a #RavePopStar of the new generation. Olympique is a participant of large electronic music festivals such as Record White Party, Must Hear Fest, Amsterdam Dance Event and so on. His personal...
 
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show series
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Khalimat Taramova is only 22 years old, but she’s been through a lot, especially in the past two weeks. Kept under lock and key at home in Chechnya, her family beats her and even forced her to undergo so-called “conversion therapy.” Taramova identifies as bisexual. Last month, she reached out to a prominent…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Last week, investigative journalists at Meduza and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty revealed that a Russian marketing firm recently tried to recruit European bloggers in a secret media campaign to smear Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine. To find out more about these solicitations and to learn how this fits into R…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On May 13, a Ukrainian court placed pro-Kremlin oligarch and lawmaker Viktor Medvedchuk under round-the-clock house arrest pending trial for high treason. The country’s Prosecutor General had signed off on the charges two days earlier, indicting not only Medvedchuk, but also his closest ally and fellow lawm…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en As you may have learned from the crowdfunding banners now adorning this website, the Russian authorities designated Meduza as a “foreign agent” on April 23. Our new status in Russia has chased away advertisers and deprived us of revenue, endangering Meduza’s continued existence. That’s the sad truth of our …
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en A lot has happened this month. On the world stage, Russia’s relations with the Czech Republic started unraveling on April 17, when officials in Prague accused Russian military intelligence agents of destroying ammunition depots seven years ago in explosions that killed two people. Three days before that bom…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en This week, the Biden administration rolled out the latest round of U.S. sanctions against Russia, slapping Moscow (yet again) with a series of targeted measures to punish the Kremlin for alleged election meddling, hacking, and military aggression. The U.S. Treasury Department identified a few dozen persons …
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Last month, the Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences decided to withhold public access to new research on atmospheric and soil pollution in cities throughout the region. The discussion about burying the “alarmist” report was streamed on YouTube, however, and the academy’s effort to purge the f…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en When it comes to carrying out repressions, the Russian government’s reach isn’t limited by its own borders. The Kremlin is known for going after perceived enemies abroad — especially former “insiders” and members of the political opposition. In recent years, high-profile assassinations linked to Russian age…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In an interview published on March 17, U.S. President Joe Biden said he considers Vladimir Putin to be a “killer,” prompting the Russian president to respond a day later with a schoolyard retort that translates loosely to the phrase: “Look who’s talking!” In what sounded more like a threat than a salutation…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Russia and Twitter haven’t really gotten along for years now. In fact, since 2017, federal censors at Roskomnadzor (RKN) have filed more than 28,000 takedown requests with the social network, and the agency complains that Twitter still grants Russian users access to 3,168 of these materials containing suppo…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In a time when intergalactic superheroes dominate global box offices and capture the imaginations of millions of people around the world, what do we see when we look back at the science fiction of the Cold War? What is gained and what is obscured by comparing the films and literature created by the two supe…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Belarus has seen ongoing protests since August 2020, when election officials declared that Alexander Lukashenko (Alyaksandr Lukashenka) had won his sixth consecutive presidential term. The mass demonstrations were met with a violent police crackdown, and several members of the opposition were thrown in pris…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden recently had their first presidential phone call — a conversation that paved the way for a renewal of the New START Treaty (the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty reached in April 2010 between presidents Obama and Medvedev). But most other arms control agreements between Moscow and…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en For the last six months, Russian opposition politician Alexey Navalny has been making headlines both in Russia and abroad. His near-fatal poisoning in August 2020 provoked international outcry and his immediate arrest upon returning to Russia after spending months recovering in Germany sparked a wave of pro…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In December 2010, a St. Petersburg businessman named Sergey Kolesnikov penned a nifty four-page open letter to then-President Dmitry Medvedev, outlining how a glorious palace built for Vladimir Putin came to be. The details of this seemingly ancient document are now familiar again thanks to a massive invest…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Thanks to Russia’s recent constitutional amendments, local self-government has effectively lost its independence. State officials at all levels are now accountable, one way or another, to the president. Dramatic as these changes seem on paper, the reforms, in fact, formally recognize what has long been true…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en There have been major breakthroughs in the investigative reporting surrounding the poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny, whom the Federal Security Service allegedly tried to assassinate in August 2020. As Meduza has reported previously, Navalny’s case is part of a long, grim trend in Russia…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Even if you follow news in Russia regularly, you might be unaware or only vaguely aware that Russia’s Central Bank printed an enormous sum of money over the past decade in a sweeping campaign to restructure the country’s major banks and liquidate smaller failing financial institutions. In a recent joint inv…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On November 15, Moldovan citizens at home and abroad came out in record-breaking numbers to cast their ballots in the run-off vote of the country’s 2020 presidential elections. In the end, former Prime Minister Maia Sandu defeated incumbent President Igor Dodon, becoming Moldova’s very first woman president…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Back in early October, Meduza learned about a whole archive of transcripts between members of the Clinton administration and Vladimir Putin, dated between 1999 and 2001 — records that were first declassified and published by the Clinton Digital Library in August 2019. We wrote three feature stories based on…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en A six-week war in Nagorno-Karabakh has ended disastrously for Armenia. Judging by the map, the situation on the ground will revert mostly to the conditions in place before Yerevan’s 1991 war with Baku, leaving Azerbaijani artillery perched just outside the breakaway republic’s capital city and the 50,000 so…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On October 5, thousands of opposition demonstrators took to the streets of Bishkek to protest the official results of Kyrgyzstan’s parliamentary elections. About a dozen different opposition parties had failed to overcome the seven percent threshold needed to get into parliament and two pro-government parti…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In April 2020, Russia shipped 45 ventilator machines to New York City as part of what became a humanitarian exchange with America at the height of the Big Apple’s initial coronavirus outbreak. But what should have been a heartwarming display of cooperation in challenging times quickly became a political boo…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Armenia and Azerbaijan reached a fragile ceasefire agreement in Moscow on October 10 after nearly a dozen hours in negotiations. The two sides will suspend hostilities so bodies and prisoners of war can be exchanged, while diplomats from Yerevan and Baku debate a more lasting resolution. Since the late 1980…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en The historian Stephen Cohen died on September 18 at the age of 81. Though he became something of a pariah among American Russianists in his final years, particularly after 2014 (thanks to his views on the Ukraine conflict, which often dovetailed with Kremlin talking points), Cohen was perhaps best known pro…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en About a decade ago, after a temporary falling out with Vladimir Putin, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko tried to pivot his country to the West. In this endeavor, he had help from a British PR firm called “Bell Pottinger” that once employed some of the most influential spin-doctors in the world. The…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en The German media reported on September 9 that Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny was poisoned with a new type of “Novichok” nerve agent, more dangerous than any variation previously identified. Earlier in the month, Meduza science editor Alexander Ershov interviewed biochemist Marc-Michael Blum to fin…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On September 1, 2020, the Russian newspaper Kommersant ran a story that looked like a real bombshell before it fizzled out. The report, titled “Hackers Appeal to the U.S. State Department: American Voter Data Appears on Russian Darknet,” credits a Russian hacker platform with posting millions of American vo…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en If you’ve read anything about Russia’s coronavirus vaccine, “Sputnik V,” you know that it’s rolling out to the public in October, just as Phase III trials begin — meaning that researchers still have no idea how effective the product actually is. So far, the scientists developing Sputnik V say they’ve combin…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Opposition politician and Anti-Corruption Foundation creator Alexey Navalny was hospitalized early on Thursday, August 20, in critical condition. At the time this podcast was recorded, he was in a coma and breathing through a ventilator in Omsk, where his flight home to Moscow was forced to make an emergenc…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On August 9, Belarus concludes its most contentious, openly dirtiest, and toughest presidential campaign ever. During the race, one leading (albeit unregistered) candidate has been imprisoned (as well as two campaign chiefs of staff) and another fled the country altogether. Long-time incumbent President Ale…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en For the past two years, several major state news organizations in Russia have been working with China’s biggest media conglomerate to trade publicity about each nation’s greatest achievements. Beijing’s efforts have fallen mostly flat in Russia, however, thanks to shortages of trained personnel and shortcom…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In reporting and analysis about Russian politics, the question is ubiquitous: How does Vladimir Putin see things? While there’s no shortage of efforts to read the Russian president’s mind, a more grounded approach would be to examine the intelligence that shapes Putin’s policymaking. One of the Kremlin’s be…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On the morning of July 7, federal agents arrested Ivan Safronov, a longtime journalist who recently took a job as a communications adviser to Roscosmos head Dmitry Rogozin. Safronov is being charged with treason and faces up to 20 years in prison. His lawyers have been granted limited access to the case fil…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On Friday, June 26, a Moscow court announced verdicts in the controversial “Seventh Studio” case involving the alleged embezzlement of almost 129 million rubles (about $1.9 million) allocated to the Culture Ministry’s “Platforma” project (a state-led contemporary art incubator). All four defendants — direct…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On today’s show, host Kevin Rothrock speaks to online-disinformation investigation pioneer Ben Nimmo about his latest research into a sweeping Russian disinformation campaign called “Secondary Infektion.” Mr. Nimmo is the founder of the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab and last year he becam…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en This week’s show looks at Russian nationalism, activism in Russia against police brutality, and the American alt-right. We also return specifically to remarks by Mikhail Svetov from last week’s show about an initiative he’s calling “Russian Lives Matter.” The Black Lives Matter movement in the United States…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On today’s episode, we’ll hear from five guests about race and injustice in Russia and the Soviet Union, including from the activist behind a new initiative against police brutality in Russia built around the slogan “Russian Lives Matter.” As you may have guessed, this adapts the better known phrase “Black …
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en This week's guest is Joshua Yaffa, The New Yorker's Moscow correspondent and the author of the new book “Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin’s Russia,” which offers a look at Putin’s Russia without focusing on Putin, studying a handful of individual case studies and the moral choices…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In the past several weeks, Meduza has written extensively about the newsroom controversy at Vedomosti, one of Russia’s top business newspapers. Most recently, Meduza published a joint investigation with a handful of other independent news outlets (including Vedomosti itself) about the backroom wheeling and …
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en On May 4, 2020, the Pulitzer Prize Board announced the latest winners of the most coveted award in journalism. The staff of The New York Times won prizes in three different categories: international reporting, investigative reporting, and commentary. The first honor was awarded for “a set of enthralling sto…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In a world engulfed by the coronavirus pandemic, “The Naked Pravda” travels back in time to the carefree 1980s, when Americans and Russians worried about simpler things like World War III. Fears in U.S. popular culture that the Cold War might turn hot culminated in 1984 with the film “Red Dawn,” starring Pa…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In regions and cities across Russia, state officials are taking extraordinary measures to limit people's movements and curb the spread of coronavirus. On March 18, Russia’s Supreme Court even imposed a moratorium on all hearings across the nation’s judicial system except for particularly “urgent cases,” tho…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In late 2019, many Internet users started noticing that the Russian state media was increasingly describing gas explosions as “gas pops” in news coverage — even when the incidents caused major damage to life and property. In fact, the number of “gas pops” mentioned in news reports jumped from a few dozen st…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en In late March 2020, after the owners of the newspaper Vedomosti confirmed that they'd reached a preliminary agreement to sell off the publication, deputy editors appealed to the paper’s new owners in a letter where they warned that the newsroom is in chaos, advertisers are in shock, and subscribers are dema…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en LGBTQ activists in the Russophone world face obstacles that many in the Anglophone world do not, but that means they also find ways to survive that defy the imagination. One way queer Russian speakers have found to work through those life-and-death decisions is writing science fiction. Through stories about…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en As COVID-19 spreads rapidly across the world, the disease is pushing healthcare systems to the brink. The number of reported cases is low but rising in Russia, where officials have imposed limits on public assemblies and major events, while resisting the more drastic measures deployed in Asia and now rollin…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en We’ve known it was coming since January when Vladimir Putin warned the nation, but now it’s moving at full throttle and threatens to inflict untold damage. No, it’s not the coronavirus — it's the other calamity currently unfolding in Russia: a massive campaign to rewrite the Constitution so that Vladimir Pu…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en The Democratic Party's primaries are underway in the United States, where the country's increasingly left-leaning political party is flirting with democratic socialist Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders as its nominee. Additionally, recent reports citing U.S. national intelligence that Russian operatives are ag…
 
Save Meduza! https://support.meduza.io/en Earlier this month, Meduza published an article by Andrey Pertsev about President Vladimir Putin's shifting rhetoric when discussing the 1939 Soviet-Nazi nonaggression pact, as well as his growing criticism of Polish foreign policy in the year before the USSR cut a deal with Adolf Hitler. Despite being many…
 
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