Last April I got an email from an American expat in Russia, Phil Butler, asking me whether I would be interested in contributing a short biography for an upcoming book entitled “Putin’s Praetorians: Confessions of the Top Kremlin Trolls”. Phil described the future book as a collection of bios from some of the most “notorious” Kremlin-fanboys and, of course, I immediate liked the idea. At the very least, this was going to be fun, so I agreed and soon sent Phil a short description of how I, a “White Russian”, ended up being a self-confessed and categorically unapologetic “Putin groupie”. Then I more or less forgot about all this and resumed my normal work. Three months later Phil emailed me again with a draft version of the book and asked me to check it out. I took a look and …
I was absolutely stunned.
What I thought would be just a collection of bios from some good folks ended up being a most interesting discussion of why people suddenly feel the need to speak up, to resist and to take on The Monster. Truly, this book is much ‘bigger’ than just Russia; it is about what makes us human in the best sense of the word: an unbreakable determination to resist Evil and Lies in all their manifestations.
The “Kremlin Trolls” featured in this book are all very different people, different in their backgrounds, professional experience, ethnicity, temperaments and motives. I had no idea that “Kremlin Trolls” could be recruited (by God?) from such different backgrounds. I am pretty sure that none of us had ever planned to become a “Kremlin Troll” or even to get involved in politics. And yet, one day, something hidden deep inside us “snapped” and we suddenly found ourselves in a struggle against the most powerful (and obnoxious, I would add) Empire in world history. For me it was the Anglo-Zionist aggression against the Serbian people in Bosnia, but others have reacted to other triggers.
Each story in this book is fascinating by itself, but taking together they form what I would call a “witness to our times”, a sociological analysis about how an action (the Empire’s war on Russia) resulted in an unexpected but also inevitable reaction.
But becoming a notorious “Kremlin Troll” is not only about taking a stance against something, it is also very much siding with something else – in this case the new Russia. Others might disagree, but I simply don’t think that the old Soviet Union would have inspired so many people to take up (intellectual) arms and challenge an Empire, at least not the decrepit USSR of the late 1980s. In sharp contrast, the new Russia does inspire and give hope. In this book you will also discover why Russia is having effect on so very different people.
The struggle against the Empire and for Russia is far from over. In fact, we are still in the early stages of what will probably be a long war. “Putin’s Praetorians: Confessions of the Top Kremlin Trolls” form a snapshot in time, a look into the early history of this long struggle which brought together dramatically different people who joined forces in a common stance. It is both an honor and a great privilege for me to have been part of this most interesting story. I urge you all to get a copy of this book which I consider a “must read” to understand our times and how a few isolated individuals ended up becoming the nightmare of a multi-billion dollar propaganda industry completely dedicated to legitimizing the Empire and its evil policies.
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