Vladimir Putin doesn’t get his mega show – the pictures from Moscow

Vladimir Putin doesn’t get his mega show – the pictures from Moscow

With a daytime temperature of minus 12 degrees, the Kremlin gathered thousands of spectators at the Luzhniki Stadium on Wednesday – officially to celebrate Defender of the Fatherland Day, which is officially scheduled for February 23 in Russia. This year the festivities have been extended to three days. The holiday, introduced under this title in 2002, is now serving as a cover to stoke patriotic spirit after a year of war.

At least that’s the idea. The event, which took place in Moscow, had nothing to do with the promised mega show. It started with a costumed troupe intended to stage a tribute to Russian soldiers through the ages – from the warriors who fought against Genghis Khan to the Red Army.

“Russia only has two allies: the army and the fleet!” croaked the moderator Julia Baransovskaya into the microphone after the carnival presentation – only to then open a parade of “heroes”. When the first man allegedly wounded in the war in Ukraine took the stage, the applause sounded suspiciously like boos. He recited his poorly rehearsed text awkwardly: “Last year everyone got a new family member: Russia,” was the conclusion of his speech, which died away without enthusiasm.

The big stars stay away from the show

Finally, after another stuttering “frontline hero,” Baranovskaya announced her alleged lover, Gregory Leps, who was singing a patriotic ditty. While the playback was playing, thousands of reserved spectators still crowded in front of the stadium entrances to get inside.

Those who had made it to the stadium, however, could not be warmed by anything, not even the most sentimental patriotic speech, not even the most patriotic anthem. Not even the appearance of the father of an alleged dead man who played his son’s last message. Warm applause was all the audience was willing to give. Even the moderator Baranovskaya rolled her eyes in exasperation and quickly announced the next musical act.

Men in camouflage with Z symbols on their sleeves and disguised Cossacks in the background tried to rouse the crowd. Vain. Only the singer Schaman, who roared his hit “I’m Russian” with bleached hair and a melodramatic face, brought a little movement.

A few minutes for Vladimir Putin

When Vladimir Putin entered the stage at the end, isolated choirs rang out in the audience, cheering the Kremlin boss and Russia. But Putin only had a few sentences left for the assembled audience. The Russian commander-in-chief congratulated everyone with the upcoming holiday and gushed about his military. And then it was already over. After a last “Russia” call, he left the stage in proud solitude.

Source: Stern

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