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In Moscow's Shadows

News & Politics Podcasts

Russia, behind the headlines as well as in the shadows. This podcast is the audio counterpart to Mark Galeotti's blog of the same name, a place where "one of the most informed and provocative voices on modern Russia", can talk about Russia historical and (more often) contemporary, discuss new books and research, and sometimes talk to other Russia-watchers. It will come out at least once a month, but if you'd like to try and make sure it comes out more often, support my work, or want to ask questions or suggest topics for me to cover, do please contribute to my Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/InMoscowsShadows

Russia, behind the headlines as well as in the shadows. This podcast is the audio counterpart to Mark Galeotti's blog of the same name, a place where "one of the most informed and provocative voices on modern Russia", can talk about Russia historical and (more often) contemporary, discuss new books and research, and sometimes talk to other Russia-watchers. It will come out at least once a month, but if you'd like to try and make sure it comes out more often, support my work, or want to ask questions or suggest topics for me to cover, do please contribute to my Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/InMoscowsShadows

Location:

United Kingdom

Description:

Russia, behind the headlines as well as in the shadows. This podcast is the audio counterpart to Mark Galeotti's blog of the same name, a place where "one of the most informed and provocative voices on modern Russia", can talk about Russia historical and (more often) contemporary, discuss new books and research, and sometimes talk to other Russia-watchers. It will come out at least once a month, but if you'd like to try and make sure it comes out more often, support my work, or want to ask questions or suggest topics for me to cover, do please contribute to my Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/InMoscowsShadows

Language:

English


Episodes

In Moscow's Shadows 32: Victory Day and Memory Politics, and the Kremlin in WW2

5/9/2021
Today (9 May) is Victory Day, and the sad truth is that this also inevitably means claims and counter claims of 'memory wars' over the Great Patriotic War. So what can and should we do about this? And in the second part, a little historical vignette: how was the Kremlin fortress protected during WW2? The answer is by hiding it in plain sight. The Henry Jackson Society event convened by Dr Jade McGlynn that I mention is here, and the previous Victory Day podcast is here. If you want to read...

Duration:00:36:20

In Moscow's Shadows 31: Navalny, Patrushev, Orban, and more [RELOADED]

5/1/2021
A mysterious glitch silenced the first, Navalny-related part of this podcast. This has now been fixed, and the full, uncensored version is now up - should now be up. From why the Kremlin fears Navalny to what Patrushev believes and whether Hungary is a Russian proxy, I reply to a selection of patron's questions. The articles I mentioned are my take on 'post-post-modern authoritarianism' in the Moscow Times here and Patrushev's interview in Argumenty i Fakty here. You can also follow my...

Duration:00:52:18

In Moscow's Shadows 30: The (Czech) Lion that Roared

4/18/2021
A personal and unpolished snap response to the news that the Czech government is expelling 18 Russian diplomat-spies after an investigation linked the GRU's Unit 29155 - and the infamous 'Petrov and Boshirov' of Salisbury novichok fame - with the explosion at an arms depot in 2014 that killed two. And I touch on how this may help Prague adopt more of a leadership role in Central Europe, another of my hobbyhorses... There are previous articles of mine on the 2020 'ricin case' here and...

Duration:00:28:39

In Moscow's Shadows 29: Is Russia Declining, and Is Putin's Handsome?

4/13/2021
Why is there this talk of Russia as a 'declining power' - and is it true? I'd suggest we ought to use the term with caution, not least as we are all declining... The Saradzhan and Abdullaev piece I mentioned is here. In the second part, I take a silly survey that claimed to find that Putin is Russia's most handsome man and combine it with criminal slang and plastic pop music to speculate about power versus legitimacy... Oh, and if you want more of that song (gods have mercy on your soul),...

Duration:00:33:54

In Moscow's Shadows 28: The LDPR: Paralunatic Wing of United Russia

4/2/2021
Rumours that Zhirinovsky is going to step down from leadership of the Liberal Democratic Party look more credible these days, and oligarch Oleg Deripaska is even being mooted as a successor. So, it's time for a bit of an exploration of the LDPR, what it stands for, what role it plays, and where it might go. After the break, I take a quick look at a story in Znak on police procurement (here) and the Amazing Activities of the Singular Bastrykin. I talk about Korolev in this cellcast and in...

Duration:00:42:18

In Moscow's Shadows 27: Men and Force and Forceful Language

3/24/2021
Who are the main 'siloviki' or 'men of force,' the heads of Russia's security structures? In response to a request from a patron, I give a run-through of the people and their prospects. Relevant other IMS episodes I mention are on Shoigu (here), Naryshkin (here) and Patrushev (here). And then after the break, I take a quick look at Biden's "killer" comment, how it was received, and what it might - or might not - mean. You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's Shadows, and become one of the...

Duration:00:42:34

In Moscow's Shadows 26: Moscow's Marvels, and Mob Murder

3/14/2021
All the Ms. First of all, as a counter to the understandable pessimism about Russia at the moment, I look at some of the aspects of Moscow that still make me marvel, and consider how they offer signs of long-term (which really means post-Putin) hope for Russia as a whole. And then after the break, we have mob murder, as the newly-opened case of the 2009 murder of old-school gangster Vyacheslav 'Yaponchik' Ivankov says something not just about the decline of the traditional criminal 'vory v...

Duration:00:52:39

In Moscow's Shadows 25: Navalny in Prison

2/27/2021
A short. 'one act' special: with the news (still unconfirmed) that Navalny is being sent to IK-2 penal colony in Vladimir region, I look at the prison, and what that may mean for him. You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's Shadows, and become one of the podcast's supporting Patrons and gain question-asking rights and access to exclusive extra materials right here.

Duration:00:16:20

In Moscow's Shadows 24: Scenarios for Russia after Navalny, and Dzerzhinsky vs Nevsky [reloaded]

2/21/2021
With Navalny in prison, the opposition mobilising, and the state cracking down, what will happen next? The only honest answer anyone can give is "no idea." So instead of trying to make predictions, I instead offer up a variety of scenarios, to illustrate the range of possibilities and also highlight some specific issues we need to bear in mind. In the second part, I build off a piece In wrote in the Spectator and address the question of whether 'Iron Felix' Dzerzhinsky will be returning to...

Duration:00:56:57

In Moscow's Shadows 24: Scenarios for Russia, and Dzerzhinsky vs Nevsky

2/21/2021
With Navalny in prison, the opposition mobilising, and the state cracking down, what will happen next? The only honest answer anyone can give is "no idea." So instead of trying to make predictions, I instead offer up a variety of scenarios, to illustrate the range of possibilities and also highlight some specific issues we need to bear in mind. In the second part, I build off a piece In wrote in the Spectator and address the question of whether 'Iron Felix' Dzerzhinsky will be returning to...

Duration:00:39:22

In Moscow's Shadows 23: Is Navalny the best thing that ever happened to Putinism? Russia's 'Stolypin moment'?

2/6/2021
It's a deliberately provocative title, I know, but how might the 'Navalny effect' impact late Putinism? A swing towards blunt and uncompromising authoritarianism? A genuine 'reform that you may preserve' conservative reformulation? The truth is likely to be something between the two, but it is worth considering that even if Navalny is not successful in bringing genuine democracy to Russia - we'll have to see - he may nonetheless improve ordinary Russians' lot. In the second half, quite why...

Duration:00:39:22

In Moscow's Shadows 22: The Morning After A Hot Day in Russia

1/24/2021
Yesterday saw major protests all across Russia, a genuine success for Team Navalny. But now what? My rough and uncurated first thoughts... You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's Shadows, and become one of the podcast's supporting Patrons and gain question-asking rights and access to exclusive extra materials right here.

Duration:00:33:11

In Moscow's Shadows Cellcast: 18 January 2021: What does the Kremlin do with Navalny?

1/18/2021
Another short 'cellcast', though given its timeliness, going public straightaway. In this cellcast, recorded on 18 January 2021, I take a very speculative, un-thought-through look at the Kremlin's options for dealing with Navalny now he is once again in its hands as of last night... You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's Shadows, and become one of the podcast's supporting Patrons and gain question-asking rights and access to exclusive extra materials right here.

Duration:00:13:10

In Moscow's Shadows 21: The Federal Protection Service (FSO) and Russian security politics; and Three Stories About the Opposition

1/11/2021
The FSO, the Federal Protection Service (or Federal Guard Service) is more that just Putin's dark-suited bodyguards, or the goose-stepping soldiers at the Eternal Flame. In my latest exploration of Russia's security community, I look at these 'watchers of the watchers' who even do their own opinion polling. (The Meduza article I reference is here.) In the second part, I look at the opposition's concerns about Trump's twitter ban, an interesting study of electoral politics by Andras...

Duration:00:44:37

Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas: 4 January: Kulikovo, 1380 to 2021

1/11/2021
So Russia has a new laser system, called Peresvet. Pere-who? This gets me talking, for the last of the Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas cellcasts, about the battle of Kulikovo in 1380 - and why it matters in 2021. (It is, by the way, a bit of a fascination for me, and if you're interested you can find more about it in my book Kulikovo 1380: the battle that made Russia)

Duration:00:16:40

Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas: 1 January: Sergei Kuzhugetovich Shoigu

1/8/2021
How did Defence Minister Shoigu make it from graduating from Krasnoyarsk Poly as a construction engineer to being discussed as a potential future president? In this third cellcast of the 2020-21 Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas, I give my quick take. You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's Shadows, and become one of the podcast's supporting Patrons and gain question-asking rights and access to exclusive extra materials (including the other Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas, as only the...

Duration:00:21:32

Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas: 28 December: Directorate K and the FSB's dilemma

1/4/2021
How might a scandal from 2019 affect who runs the FSB in 2021? And should we consider levels of elite embezzlement a good index of their confidence? In this second cellcast of the 2020-21 Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas, I take a look at the agency's future. One erratum, by the way, that serves me right for trying to convert big numbers on the fly: the 120 billion rubles I mention at one point is, of course, £120 million, not £12 million... You can also follow my blog, In Moscow's...

Duration:00:20:18

Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas: 25 December: Afghan Christmas

1/1/2021
Today in 1979, Afghanistan was waking up under Soviet domination. In this first cellcast of the 2020-21 Twelve Days of Shadowy Christmas, I pull out three aspects of that conflict of relevance today. The Levada poll I mention on Navalny, by the way, is here. And if anyone is interested in my PhD on the impact of the war, the book-of-the-thesis is Afghanistan: the Soviet Union's last war (1995), and I have a book on Operation Storm-333 coming out this March from Osprey. You can also follow...

Duration:00:20:30

In Moscow's Shadows 20: Spooks: more Navalny, will the FSB change tack, and did the SVR carry out a 'cyberattack'?

12/22/2020
More on the Navalny case, the story that keeps unfolding, following the publication of his conversation with one of his would-be killers, and a rumination on whether there will be implications for the FSB and its approach. Then, as a reminder that Russia also has competent spooks, I turn to the recently-revealed and massive hack of largely US systems. Is this really a 'cyberattack,' as so many in the US are saying, and why does this terminology matter? You can read the Navalny conversation...

Duration:00:36:27

In Moscow's Shadows 19: The Navalny Hit (after the Bellingcat/Insider report)

12/15/2020
An impressively detailed investigation by Bellingcat and The Insider meticulously details the Russian Federal Security Service operation against Alexei Navalny, so here is a short podcast episode devoted to this case and some implications. The report is available here, and Navalny's video on it here. My hot take in the Moscow Times is here, any my October piece about General Smirnov is here. Finally, I discussed the poisoning through the prism of 'hybrid war' in this article. You can also...

Duration:00:25:18