In another act of defiance against the Kremlin, the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK) on Tuesday published a list of more than 6,000 bribes and warmongers which she says enabled the illegal invasion of Ukraine by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Founded by Russian activist Alexei Navalny, FBK is a non-profit organization that investigates acts of corruption committed by senior Russian government officials.
Leonid Volkov, Chief of Staff of FBK, posted on Twitter that the publication unmasks “Those who started the war. Those who helped Putin usurp power. Those who financed the war. Those who stole” and “those who suppressed dissidents” against the Kremlin.
Over the past two months, the West has responded to Russia’s illegal war with a plethora of sanctions against its economy; financial institutions; currency; and the oligarchs, who lost billions of dollars in assets for supporting the authoritarian ruler.
Those named as Putin’s accomplices are carefully ranked according to their area of expertise. Hundreds are listed under each section as warmongers, propagandists, corrupt officials and organizers of political repression, to name a few.
The purpose of the list “is to make Putin toxic,” Volkov said. FBK’s goal is to leave the Russian President ‘abandoned’ and ‘isolated in a scorched field’ so that he finds himself with no support and no one to turn to for help.
The announcement comes a month after Navalny’s prison term was extended to nine years following his assassination attempt at the hands of the Kremlin and its Federal Security Service (FSB).
Before boarding a plane from Tomsk to Moscow, FSB agents broke into the activist’s hotel room and laced his underwear with the deadly nerve agent Novichok. He fell ill in mid-flight and the plane had to make an emergency landing near Omsk where he was hospitalized before being transferred to another hospital in Berlin.
Although Russian prosecutors refused to investigate the assassination attempt, FBK later got a full confession of FSB agent Konstantin Borisovich, who was part of the task force formed to ensure Navalny’s death.
When Navalny returned to Russia, he was arrested again for violating his parole by leaving the country for medical treatment in Berlin that likely saved his life. He was eventually sentenced to nine years in prison in a trial that was widely seen as a farce.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz remarked that the events leading up to the sentencing were “incompatible with the principles of the rule of law”. Meanwhile, FBK released a statement against the injustices that took place during the trial, during which the press had limited access and Navalny’s legal team was denied their electronic equipment during the proceedings.
Specifically, Navalny’s conviction was seen as retaliation by the Kremlin for being a thorn in Putin’s side.
Acknowledging that focusing only on the wealthiest oligarchs is not enough to dismantle the endemic corruption that characterized Putin’s years in power, Volkov explained that “it is important that we also list many middle-ranking criminals , those who pride themselves on their ability to operate under the radar.
“They thought their role in turning Putinism into a fascist dictatorship would go unnoticed,” he said. “Well, they were wrong.”
But many of the 6,000 people named still have a chance, Volkov noted, to do the right thing and drop their support for the Russian president. “Those whose hands are not covered in blood still have a month or two to recover.”
As for Navalny, the inhuman treatment he suffered from his government does not seem to have broken his morale.
“My space flight is taking a little longer than expected”, the Russian activist mentioned on his prolonged incarceration. “The ship is caught in a time loop.”
More importantly, his determination to dismantle Putin’s endemic corruption remains strong, despite the authoritarian leader’s best efforts.
“Putin is afraid of the truth,” Navalny points out, “I have always said that. Fighting censorship and bringing the truth to the Russian people has remained our priority. The Kremlin is crushing the media and in response we are creating new ones .