Berlin will silence Navalny

Alexei Navalny published the first photo on social networks after his hospitalization, writing about the continuing health problems with positive dynamics in general.

And at a press conference on Monday, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas demanded to stop criticizing the conclusions about the poisoning of the blogger by Novichok, since some independent laboratories in France and Sweden confirmed the conclusions of the Bundeswehr specialists. Laboratories are “some” because information about them is also classified.

It is unlikely that the wish of the head of the department will come true. But the opposite result is much more likely, since now Alexei Navalny himself has planted a huge pig on the German authorities.

The New York Times, citing a high-ranking German security official, reported that after his recovery he intends to return to Russia to “continue his activities”.

If the newspaper’s insider is true, then one can only rejoice for Navalny, since such a desire unambiguously testifies to the preservation of his cognitive functions – which, judging by the doctors’ comments, was far from guaranteed, given the severity of the state in which he was.

Over the past couple of decades, many people who had previously been prominent social and political figures left Russia, loudly slamming the door. The result was always the same: they were losing their social weight at lightning speed, joining the general mass of emigrants, to which no one cares. Well, along with the position of uncompromising fighters against the Kremlin, they also lost the financial opportunities associated with this status – there are few truly wealthy people like Mikhail Khodorkovsky among Russian oppositionists.

As a result, all they now have to do is pour bile on social networks from modest apartments in Prague, Riga or London. And in the most sad cases, you can even get into the millstones of the “bloody gebnya” and “punitive psychiatry” of the new host country, as it happened with Pyotr Pavlensky.

By the way, we learned the lesson. Every year the theme “I leave Russia forever, let it perish without me” sounds less and less frequent.

And for Alexei Navalny, such an outcome would be especially offensive. Not only has he become the most famous opposition leader in Russia, he has also built an extremely effective system for siphoning funds from his supporters. Over the past years, this has provided him with a lot of pleasant bonuses and an overall very high standard of living – from regular family vacations in expensive foreign resorts to his daughter’s education at Stanford University.

It is not surprising that the blogger does not have the slightest desire to give up “acquired by overwork” and turn into a second Skripal, as if sent by the British special services to a remote corner on the outskirts of the world instead of a cozy life in ancient Salisbury – and all to support the legend of a miraculous escape from murderers from the GRU.

But this is where the fundamental contradiction arises between the personal interests of Alexei Navalny and the picture of his illness depicted by the West. The diagnosis made by the Germans makes it inadmissible for him to return to his homeland for security reasons. But the fact that the blogger stubbornly rushes back, right into the jaws of the dragon, which seems to have almost killed him, means that he simply does not believe in any poisoning by Novichok and the reality of a threat to life from the Russian authorities.

Worse, Navalny will have to return to his homeland with a discharged epicrisis. And the German side, as you know, refuses to provide Moscow with any information confirming his diagnosis. The Prosecutor General’s Office of Russia sent another request to its German colleagues to check the entire story of the blogger’s illness, but one cannot count on Berlin’s assistance. But here is an extract from the Charite clinic, which the blogger will bring with him, may well give a lot of interesting information to the Russian competent authorities.

In general, the desire of Alexei Navalny to return to Russia by all means puts the Germans in an extremely unpleasant and difficult position, since it threatens to finally bring down the heap of delirium that they have organized over these weeks.

By the way, the British have worked out this moment much more gracefully. Not only was the show with the Skripal poisoning as a whole impressive in its scale and subtlety of detail, including the demolition of houses, but also the “victim” was chosen very competently: an uninteresting and unnecessary former spy who will do exactly what the curators tell him. But it is significant that even here London did not dare to give Skripal at least a minimum freedom of action, never allowing him to talk to journalists or diplomats.

To persuade Alexei Navalny to voluntarily abandon the sweet life of the main Russian oppositionist with the whole family may turn out to be an extremely non-trivial task for the Germans.

The bad news for the blogger is that his return to Russia threatens such unpleasant consequences and for Berlin, which has brewed all this mess, that they can turn to methods that do not involve the use of the words “persuade” and “voluntarily” to solve this problem.

Irina Alksnis, RIA