The dissident Russian Alexey Navalnyin its new prison in a remote arctic location, in the middle of the night forced to listen to the Russian anthem and songs by a popular pro-Putin nationalist singer. Navalny himself writes it, quoted by some media, including Sky News. The 47-year-old former lawyer Navalny, who survived a poisoning attempt and was then sentenced to remain in prison until he is 74 for corruption and extremism – sentences considered specious and instrumental to eliminate Vladimir Putin’s main opponent – has been in prison for a few weeks cell in Yamal, in a remote Russian Arctic region 40 kilometers north of the polar circle, subjected to a very harsh prison regime. The new torture denounced by Navalny consists in him and the other prisoners being taken away from sleep very early in the morning and forced to listen to “I am Russian” by the popular singer Shaman, 32 years oldborn Yaroslav Dronov, author of ultra-patriotic lyrics that glorify the war: a trend of song exploited in recent times by Putin who is aiming for a new easy re-election to the Kremlin in March.
Last November Shaman also made headlines for having pressed a red button live during a concert to simulate the launch order of nuclear missiles. «The singer Shaman became famous when I was already in prison, so I couldn’t see him or listen to his music. But I knew that he had become Putin’s most important singer and that his most famous song is ‘I am a Russian. Obviously I was curious to listen to it, but where could I listen to it? Then they took me to Yamal. And here at 5 o’clock in the morning we hear the command “get up!”, followed by the Russian national anthem, after which the second most important song of the country is played: ‘I am Russian by Shaman.