The first I heard of Marina Ovsyannikova was in a post by our friend, rawgod. My curiosity piqued, I went in search of more information. In the world of courageous people, Ms. Ovsyannikova stands out, is at the top of my list. What did she do?
She was an editor/producer at Russia’s state television Channel One. Yesterday evening, in the midst of the nightly live news (propaganda) program, she burst onto the set behind the news anchor yelling, “Stop the war. No to war” and carrying a sign …
Translated, the sign reads, “Don’t believe the propaganda. They’re lying to you here.” It was signed in English: “Russians against the war.” The news anchor continued to read from her teleprompter speaking louder in an attempt to drown out Ovsyannikova, but her protest could be seen and heard for several seconds before the channel switched to a recorded segment.
Ovsyannikova also released a pre-recorded video via the OVD-Info human rights group in which she expressed her shame at working for Channel One and spreading Kremlin propaganda.
Ovsyannikova was arrested shortly after her protest and was held for a time at the Ostankino television center before being taken to the police station. This is the first time that an employee from Russian state media has publicly denounced the war as the country continues its crackdown on anti-war dissent. So strict is the current wave of censorship that other news programs blurred out the message on Ovsyannikova’s sign in their own reports on the incident. Within hours of her protest, more than 40,000 people had so far left comments on Ovsyannikova’s Facebook page, with many praising her for her taking a stand. Tell me again how the Russian people love Putin and fully support the war on Ukraine???
What has become of Ms. Ovsyannikova since yesterday evening? I’ve read conflicting stories. One says that after being interrogated for some 14 hours, she was fined approximately 30,000 rubles, or roughly $280 USD and released from prison. But The Washington Post reports that human rights groups say they are unable to locate her. I suspect there can be no good outcome for Ms. Ovsyannikova from her protest, but I am sure she knew that when she made the decision to do what she did, to stand for truth and justice.
Ms. Ovsyannikova deserves two thumbs up for her courage and honesty … I only hope her efforts were not in vain and that the people of Russia stand up against the brutal dictator in charge of their nation.