Pussy Riot freed; slams Putin

tolokonnikova pussy riot
One of the jailed members of the all-girl punk band “Pussy Riot,” Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, looks on while standing in the defendant’s cage in a court in the town of Zubova Polyana, in the Republic of Mordovia.
Credit: Maksim Blinov / AFP / Getty

In case there was any doubt that Russian band Pussy Riot was the most punk rock outfit in history – not only did they serve nearly two years in prison for political protest, but when the remaining two members were freed this weekend, they immediately and publicly bashed the man who freed them, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

“I would like to see Putin as a clement leader, but he is far from it,” Nadezhda Tolokonnikova told NBC News after leaving prison in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia. ”I see it as a weakness because to free us when we have until two months left is not much after we have served two years. I would see it as a strength if he would free other political prisoners.”

Her bandmate Maria Alyokhina agreed. “I think this is an attempt to improve the image of the current government, a little, before the Sochi Olympics — particularly for the Western Europeans,” she told the New York Times. “But I don’t consider this humane or merciful.”

“We didn’t ask for any pardon,” Alyokhina added. “I would have sat here until the end of my sentence because I don’t need mercy from Putin.”

Good lord, they’re a couple of radical badasses. I wish American pop stars would follow their lead. If Miley Cyrus decided to shock us by getting herself thrown into a Siberian prison instead of fingering teddy bears or whatever, I would have a lot more respect for her.


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