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Let Freedom Ring: Pussy Riot

August 2012  Moscow, and elsewhere…

A Russian Feminist Punk Rock Band founded in 2011 might have been condemned to obscurity if a protest song about Vladmir Putin hadn’t irked that country’s power elite. I first heard of the group in the summer of 2012 when international human rights groups like Amnesty International took up their cause after three band members, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich were imprisoned  for “Hooliganism” after a forty second performance of their song “Our Lady, Chase Putin Out!” in Moscow’s Christ The Savior Cathedral.

The women were chased out of the Cathedral, jailed, and subjected to a show trial where a parade of witnesses (some who had been no where near the Cathedral) denounced them, German Shepherds and Rotweillers were brought to court to intimidate them, and only 3 of their 17 defense witnesses were permitted to testify.

They would likely have spent three years in a Siberian Labor Camp if not for international pressure. The women were released shortly before the 2014 Sochi Olympics. When the group performed a song near an Olympic venue their performance was disrupted by police who attacked them with whips. These brave women have continued to speak out against Putin’s authoritarian rule and call for freedom for political prisoners across the globe. Putin’s attempt to crush these women backfired and brought worldwide support from people who might otherwise never have listened to their music.

What do you think?

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    • Thank you Ann. Your description kind of covers the range of emotions I went through as these events unfolded. I hope these women inspire a generation like them ready to stand up for freedom & justice wherever they’re threatened.

  1. I LOVE Pussy Riot! <3 <3 <3 This is EXACTLY why more women need to awaken to their natural, wild side. We CAN make change! 😀 Women's voices have been oppressed for far too long, and it's still happening… Like children, it is believed by many white men, that we should be seen and not heard… HAHAHAHAHAHA! Good luck with that in 2018!

  2. These women have shown remarkable courage and tenacity confronting a brutal oppressive regime. They have brilliantly accessed social media to gain support and visibility in what would appear to be a Quixotic effort: an all girl punk rock band against a murderous Mafia like regime, sounds more like a far fetched Hollywood movie plot than a current event political drama.

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