(Slate) “This is not a sentence against him, but against all of us.” That’s how Ilya Klishin, a prominent Russian former journalist, described a Moscow court’s ruling yesterday sentencing opposition leader Alexei Navalny to prison for nearly three years. Though widely expected, it still sent shockwaves through the country’s politically engaged liberal class, drawing comparisons to the historic 2003 jailing of ex-oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, once Vladimir Putin’s chief opponent. Hundreds of Muscovites hit the streets late Tuesday to protest the ruling, but the overwhelming presence of riot police turned downtown into a virtual gauntlet. More than 1,000 people were arrested.
The stakes have never been higher for Russia’s already badly beleaguered opposition—nor has the government’s room for compromise been narrower. “The Kremlin,” says Sam Greene, director of the Russia Institute at King’s College London, “has come to the conclusion that coercion is a better strategy for them than persuasion.” […]
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The Program on New Approaches to Research and Security in Eurasia (PONARS Eurasia) is a network of over 125 academics, mainly from North America and post-Soviet Eurasia, advancing new approaches to research on security, politics, economics, and society in Russia and Eurasia. Its core missions are to connect scholarship to policy on and in Russia and Eurasia and to foster a community, especially of mid-career and rising scholars, committed to developing policy-relevant and collaborative research