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The Naked PravdaПодкаст

Автор:Kevin Rothrock
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  • 23 мин.
    Save Meduza!https://support.meduza.io/enLast 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 Russian politics, The Naked Pravda spoke to Meduza investigations head Alexey Kovalev and RFE/RL journa...
  • Save Meduza!https://support.meduza.io/enOn 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 lawmaker, Taras Kozak, in connection with three episodes of illegal activity.  Both politicians belong to ...
  • 35 мин.
    Save Meduza!https://support.meduza.io/enAs 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 situation right now, but what does it mean to be a “foreign agent” in Russia? How does it change life ...
  • 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 bombshell dropped, police officers in Moscow raided the newsroom of the student journal Doxa, as well as the homes of four editors, who are now u...
  • 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 and entities, freezing any of their assets in the United States and banning Americans from doing business with them. Russia soon followed suit...
  • 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 footage from the Internet only drew the public’s attention.To try to understand why a group of prestigious scientists would question open-sourc...
  • 34 мин.
    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 agents have made headlines around the world, and Moscow has developed a reputation for abusing the Interpol notice system.At the same time, those...
  • 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, Putin also wished his American counterpart good health.Pretty strong language for the leaders of the two greatest nuclear powers on Earth! B...
  • 13 марта 2021
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    25 мин.
    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 supposedly illegal information. In retaliation against this insubordination, RKN started throttling local Twitter traffic on March 10, 2021, levera...
  • 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 superpowers of the early Space Age? And what did it feel like to watch those movies and read those books back then? What’s the legacy of these rem...
  • 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 prison.Pressure and threats from the authorities drove other opposition figures to flee the country, including Svetlana Tikhanovskaya (Svyatlana T...
  • 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 Washington have expired or collapsed in years past, so what’s the future of these diplomatic efforts going forward?For answers, “The Naked Pr...
  • 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 protests that brought people to the streets countrywide. With Navalny in jail, his supporters and associates sprang into action. The day after hi...
  • 38 мин.
    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 investigative report released this week by the opposition figure Alexey Navalny, who survived an attempted assassination last year only to be jailed...
  • 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 in reality: appointed “city managers” have largely replaced the country’s elected mayors. But Russia’s “power vertical” relies on more than j...
  • 25 декабря 2020
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    24 мин.
    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. In recent weeks, thanks to investigative work by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty journalists Mike Eckel and Carl Schreck, there is also new ...
  • 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 investigative report, Meduza and its media partners spoke to sources and obtained testimony from witnesses who described major abuses of authorit...
  • 28 ноября 2020
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    48 мин.
    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-elect. Taking place amid the coronavirus pandemic, the campaign season was plagued by divisive political rhetoric and fake news. Meanwhile, i...
  • 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 these archives, highlighting and contextualizing some of the more memorable exchanges between Moscow and Washington. Comparing these conversa...
  • 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 souls who call it home. The big difference this time around is the presence of Russian peacekeepers – about 2,000 of them – who will be there to...
  • 31 октября 2020
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    47 мин.
    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 parties had won nearly half the seats. The protesters demanded a repeat vote and on October 6 elections officials relented and invalidated the resu...
  • 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 boondoggle. American hospitals were unable to use the lifesaving machines due to a lack of adapters to convert their required electrical voltage....
  • 10 октября 2020
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    39 мин.
    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 1980s, the fight for the Nagorno-Karabakh region has killed roughly 20,000 people and made refugees of hundreds of thousands more. Since the most r...
  • 26 сентября 2020
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    40 мин.
    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 professionally for his 1973 biography about Nikolai Bukharin, the Bolshevik revolutionary he believed represented an alternative path for Soviet ...
  • 21 мин.
    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 campaign was a complete failure: the consultants left empty-handed and Lukashenko became an international pariah once again. In August 2020, ...
  • 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 find out more about how analytical chemistry is able to identify these poisons in patients and what the outlook is for Navalny’s recovery. (Read ...
  • 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 voters’ personal data (mainly voters in the swing state of Michigan, but also in Connecticut, Florida, and North Carolina) and then profiting of...
  • 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 combined Phase I and Phase II testing and confirmed its safety and immunogenicity, but they’ve yet to compare it to a placebo and the handful of pat...
  • 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 emergency landing when he became violently ill.“The Naked Pravda” reviews what we know about Navalny’s situation and looks back at recent poisonings i...
  • 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 Alexander Lukashenko (Alyaksandr Lukashenka) now faces a surprisingly formidable challenge from Svetlana Tikhanovskaya (Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya)...
  • 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 shortcomings in China’s grasp of the Russian mediasphere. Moscow, meanwhile, has struggled as the propaganda pact’s junior partner.To learn more about...
  • 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 best-trusted sources of information about popular moods is the sociological work conducted by the country’s Secret Service, the Federal Protecti...
  • 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 file compiled by the Federal Security Service, which indicates that Safronov is suspected of selling secret information to Czech intelligence age...
  • 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 – director Kirill Serebrennikov, former Culture Ministry official Sofia Apfelbaum, former “Seventh Studio” general producer Alexey Malobrodsky, and th...
  • 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 became the head of investigations for the social-media monitoring company “Graphika.”This week, Graphika released a new report about a long-running...
  • 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 has occasioned a global conversation about racism and institutionalized prejudice. These themes resonate everywhere, even in countries without...
  • 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 Lives Matter,” which is the rallying cry for an enormous social movement that is sweeping the United States. Both of these slogans are ostensi...
  • 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 of various individuals who have played unique or interesting roles in contemporary Russia.Where does this book fit in the wider literature on...
  • 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 dealing that’s guided the outlet’s ownership for the past five years.In this episode of “The Naked Pravda,” host Kevin Rothrock reviews what w...
  • 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 stories, reported at great risk, exposing the predations of Vladimir Putin’s regime.” The winning work includes six articles and two videos. Not ...
  • 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 Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen, about a group of high school students resisting occupation by invading Soviet, Cuban, and Nicaraguan troops. E...
  • 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,” though judges have enormous leeway here to decide what meets this threshold. Meanwhile, Russia's prison system has effectively locked down, and o...
  • 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 stories in early 2017 to thousands of such reports by January 2020. Meduza’s sources in the presidential administration and Russia’s security ag...
  • 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 demanding refunds for paid subscriptions. The letter’s authors argue that the only remedy is to appoint a new chief editor from among the newsroom...
  • 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 augmented reality, lesbian seduction in space, sentient plants, and more, activists have offered political commentary on post-Soviet oppressi...
  • 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 rolling out in the West.To get a better grasp of what to expect from Russia's hospitals and medical science, “The Naked Pravda” turned to a handful ...
  • 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 Putin’s presidency might continue until 2036.When this episode was recorded, all that stood between major constitutional reforms and enactment w...
  • 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 again trying to interfere in the American presidential election have revived the media's interest in “RussiaGate” discourse that finally faded o...
  • 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 decades old, these events remain hotly debated in Eastern Europe for obvious reasons: millions died in the conflict, which ended with Poland ...
  • In mid-January, administrators at Moscow’s Higher School of Economics (HSE, perhaps the best university in Russia, shared a proposal to impose greater restrictions on political activism within the university that would have prohibited individuals affiliated with HSE from mentioning this connection when discussing political issues or taking part in what school officials described as “socially divisive” activities. The university also announced tha...
  • The “Agora” human rights group and digital activists at Roskomsvoboda recently released a report on Russian Internet freedom in 2019, where they argue that the state authorities have settled on an Internet policy vector focused on “control, censorship, and isolation.” Late last year, Meduza published a story about how a Federal Protective Service veteran and the descendant of one of Russia’s most celebrated families of missile engineers has been ...
  • In recent years, we've witnessed a strange convergence of Russian and American conspiratorial thinking. They're talking about each other again in Moscow and Washington, often spinning stories that aren't exactly rooted in facts. Whether it's Russiagate in the United States or color revolution in Russia and countries across the former Soviet Union, diabolical plots are afoot.To find out what drives popular conspiracy theories in Russia and the U.S...
  • Most weeks, it's fair to say that you could probably roll your eyes at a 30-minute podcast about the inner workings of executive power in Russia. But the issue is suddenly urgent. Two days ago, Vladimir Putin delivered his annual state-of-the-nation speech, where he surprised the country by calling for Constitutional amendments that would radically redistribute power in the Russian state, possibly weakening the presidential administration. And th...
  • According to a report by the news agency “Rossiya Segodnya,” almost half of the articles in the foreign press about Russia are “negative.” This recent study leans heavily on the British media (which makes up more than a third of the entire sample), where nearly 40 percent of the selected coverage is supposedly biased against Russia. Meduza learned that hundreds of the articles Rossiya Segodnya examined in the British press share the same author: ...
  • The Russian Presidential Affairs Department’s Scientific Research Computing Center (GRCC) develops systems to monitor and deanonymize social-media users, and it sells these systems to government and private clients alike. Using the company’s services, insurance companies can root out dishonest employees, and security-guard companies can recruit new staff. Other GRCC programs allow the police to hunt down “extremists” online. In a special report p...
  • In life and in news reporting, violence against women is a sadly “evergreen” topic, but the issue has taken on new and growing momentum in Russia, where there’s a rising number of high-profile cases involving rape and self-defense. Meduza has reported extensively on these investigations, and, in this first episode of “The Naked Pravda,” managing editor Kevin Rothrock speaks to a handful of activists and journalists who are working to shed more li...
  • “The Naked Pravda” highlights how Meduza’s top reporting intersects with the wider research and expertise that exists about Russia.Future episodes will look at the following issues:Leaked databases and how the black market for this information has become a key aspect of Russian law enforcement and investigative journalism in Russia Russian tabloid journalism and its reverberations in the Western news media Kremlin clan politics and the power of t...
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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.

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  • Доступно: 57 выпусков
  • Дата выхода на ЛитРес: 2021
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