The Forty Times Forty social movement is the best known and oldest Christian conservative social movement in Russia, with 100s of 1000s of followers and 10s of 1000s of activists across the country. Their leader, Andrei Kormukhin, is a well-known national figure, a frequent guest on TV talk shows and very active on social media, where he and his group have large followings.
Kormukhin, father of 9 children, devoutly and very publicly Orthodox, and relentless advocate of large families, has emerged as one of the most influential and articulate voices in the vigorous public backlash against recent radical government plans to implement QR code access to most areas of Russian public life, and vaccine mandates. The best social media to follow him on are his personal and group Telegram channels (content in Russian). As in the West, Telegram has emerged in Russia as the premiere platform for uncensored political discussion. (We also love Gab!, but it hasn't caught on yet in Russia.)
There is a growing disconnect between the current government, which seems to take its instructions from Klaus Schwab, and the majority of the Russian public, which is famously, socially and politically conservative. The dissonance is even more pronounced in the Russian Orthodox Church, with its leadership, in the persons of the two metropolitans (senior church officials) who are considered to be the main candidates to be the next Patriarch, Tikhon (author of the well-known best-seller Everyday Saints), and Hilarion, "Foreign Minister", of the Russian Church. Both have been pleading with the faithful to accept the vaccines, and both have publicly endorsed the government's recent initiatives. Meanwhile, the broader church, the faithful and a majority of the priesthood and monks are dead set against them, even more so than the general public. Some conservative elements of the Orthodox laity are warning of a schism if the leadership doesn't temper their mad dash into an Orwellian nirvana.
Forty Times Forty (the name is a reference to the number of churches (1600) in Moscow before the Bolsheviks destroyed most of them, and to the importance of the number 40 in the Christian faith), has been increasingly vocal since the onset of Covid last year. They came close to fielding a party in the recent Parliamentary elections, tentatively name "For the Family!", and were a major driver of the astonishing outpouring of angry comments (over 700,000 of them) on the Prime Minister's Telegram channel last week. Days later a government agency which was holding special public hearings about the proposed new laws with different representatives of Russian society denied Forty Times Forty's request to present their views at the hearings. Forty Times Forty immediately turned this into a PR scandal, pointing out, rather convincingly, that of all the social organizations in Russia, they have one of the more compelling claims to represent what the majority of Russians actually think, or at least, a very large percentage of them.
Kormukhin in October explaining (in Russian) who is really behind the Covid conspiracy.
On Wednesday of this week, in response to this denial, Forty Times Forty announced that they are launching a nation-wide petition drive, demanding the resignation of the government. They published a very well-written, lengthy 5 page open letter to President Putin (translation below), detailing their grievances, which go well beyond the issue of vaccines and QR codes, asking that he dismiss the government, which they accuse of policies harmful to the nation, and form a government of "national unity", which can reconcile the Russian public, which is deeply divided on the questions of vaccines and QR codes, with an apparent strong majority of Russians strongly opposed.
Because Forty Times Forty is well established and has chapters across the country and many enthusiastic activists, it seem quite likely that they will be successful in gathering a large number of signatures. Their strategy is to encourage their followers and anyone else to download and print out the letter and a petition signature list, and gather signatures from friends and family and the public. Regardless of whether they gather enough signatures to make an impression on Putin, this effort will undoubtedly swell their rapidly growing ranks.
The Russian political landscape has undergone an almost complete inversion over the last 6 weeks, when the government first announced the new policies. Before then, conservative, tradition-minded Russians, who are the vast majority of the population, and groups like Forty Times Forty, were generally supportive of Putin and the government, explaining Putin's high popularity which has hovered around 60-70% for many years. The proposals to introduce forced vaccinations and QR codes has turned this consensus on its head, with the government now pitted against the majority of the Russian population. Previously, the opposition was mostly of the liberal, pro-West, Alexei Navalny variety, so beloved of the Western mainstream media, but with limited support in Russia, primarily amongst younger voters in the big liberal cities like Moscow and St. Petersburg, where their support approached 20-30%, but widely disliked elsewhere. Now, suddenly, in a matter of weeks, the government is squaring off against a majority of the country, and its most conservative and Christian elements, which is a very different prospect indeed than handling the limp-wristed, globohomo crowd.
There has been an explosion of activity on Russian social media, with hundreds of new channels and groups sprouting and growing like so many mushrooms in the vast Russian forests, taking a very strong stand against the new policies. The Kremlin's state run mainstream media, primarily TV, has swung into action, broadcasting stinging attacks against this new breed of opposition, and these groups have been firing back with gusto, picking up even more followers on their burgeoning social media accounts. This is new territory for everyone involved, and it is not obvious who will come out this winner in this new struggle. Many influential Russian public figures have not weighed in on one side or the other, perhaps waiting to see how things develop.
The text of the letter, translated below, is not dull in the least, and makes for interesting reading. It features a wide range of grievances, including immigration, cultural policies, catastrophic demographic trends, tolerance of moral degeneration, and kow-towing to the West, not just the vaccine fracas, which, as the letter explains, was, for Forty Times Forty, "the final straw." Much of the letter is very similar to conservative complaints reflected in the Trump movement. Parts of it remind one of American political pamphlets circa 1776, and other parts are uniquely Russian, talking of the 1000 year legacy of the Russian people and their Orthodox Christian spiritual values, with references to Dostoevsky and the Fatherland. The letter makes clear that Russia is not immune from the civilizational debate that it ongoing worldwide. Russia has its own adherents to the creepy globalist vision of the likes of Schwab, Fauci, and Gates, who are well-entrenched in the upper ranks of Russian society, although, with perhaps, not as strong a lock on it as in the West, and it also has its feisty crowd of dyed-in-the-wool social and political conservatives, predominantly Christian, who have been roused into activity over the past weeks.
The Russian opposition to Covid tyranny is different from the West's in that it is overwhelmingly Christian, and draws its inspiration from Orthodox Christianity. While many conservative Christians also fill the ranks of the West's anti Covid mania movement, its biggest personalities, like RFK, Mercola, Rand Paul, and many others, are secular and political, at least in their public presentation. Readers of this publication will appreciate that this gives the Russian activists a super-weapon that the West lacks, a weapon before which the dark forces pushing the Great Reset, are completely out-gunned, a point the Russian activists, bring up again and again.
Text of the letter follows below. Link to the original Russian:
An open letter from the citizens of Russia
From: The Forty Times Forty Social Movement
To: The President of the Russian Federation
Copy: Deputies of the Duma (parliament - lower house)
Senators of the Federation Council (parliament - upper house)
We, the undersigned, citizens of Russia, from whom our national state draws its legitimacy, and in whose interests you are obliged to act, demand that you dismiss the entire executive branch of the Russian government.
Over the nearly two years that this government has been in power, Russian citizens have been subjected to executive decisions and laws proposed to the Duma (parliament) which are harmful to the people.
This government has failed in implementing all of your recent directives to protect the people, and increase the population of Russia. On the contrary, we are dying out at an unprecedented pace. According to official statistics, the population of Russia in 2020 shrank by 688,000 people, and in the first 9 months of 2021, by 675,000, which is 72% higher than for the same period last year. By this measure, the current government has been the most harmful to the Russian people since the government of Yegor Gaidar (Prime Minister in 1992). Below, we list just a few of your directives on protecting our people, which the current government has completely failed to achieve:
Article 67-1 of the Russian constitution:
“The Russian Federation is united by a 1000 year history, preserving the memory of our ancestors handing down our ideals and faith in God …”
“Children are the most important priority of the Russian state. The state creates conditions for widespread spiritual, ethical, intellectual, and physical growth of children, instilling in them patriotism, civic responsibility, and respect for their elders.”
Letter from President Putin to the Federal Assembly, April 21, 2021:
“The first item on the list of priority national and federal projects is “demographics.”
The most important criteria for the main goal for the development of the Russian Federation by 2030, “protecting the population, health, and welfare of the people” is to achieve “steady growth of the population of the Russian Federation.”
Throughout history our people were victorious and overcame difficulties due to the fact that they were united. So today - family, friendship, helping each other, compassion, and unity - are at the forefront.
Spiritual and moral values, discarded in many countries, have made us, in contrast to them, stronger. We will always fight for these values, and protect them.
This epidemic is upon us just as we were dealing with the consequences of the demographic crises of the 1940s and 1990s. We understand that our demographic crisis is extraordinary. Unfortunately, this is the truth. We need to acknowledge this, and act accordingly.
Preserving the people of Russia is our highest national priority. This is reflected in all the articles of our new Constitution about the defense of the family, about the crucial role of parents in the education of children, about strengthening the social safety net, and developing the economy, education, and culture.”
From a speech by President Putin at the United Russia party congress on August 24, 2021:
“I believe that a strong, prosperous family, which has 2,3,4, or more children should be the future of Russia.”
We, the representatives of the traditionalist majority, who embody the 1000 year history of Russia, not for money, but in our hearts, who keep the memory of our ancestors alive, who hand down our ideals and faith in God, who create strong, prosperous families, most of which have 2,3, 4 and more children, who make family the priority in education, who maintain and fight for spiritual and moral values, like friendship, helping each other, compassion, unity, and love - hereby extend our vote of no-confidence in the anti-people government, which has failed in achieving all of the above-mentioned goals.
The government constantly lobbies for more immigration, thanks to which our streets have become war zones and home to criminal ethnic gangs, forcing us to create self-defense patrols. Law enforcement, who are responsible for order on our streets, not only are not fulfilling their duties, but often facilitate the growth in crime, which increases along with the growth of this criminal foreign diaspora. Sometimes law enforcement are even agents of foreign intelligence services and foreign crime organizations.
Russian citizenship is expedited for non-ethnic Russians, while ethnic Russians living in countries of the former Soviet Union have been denied citizenship for years. Furthermore, irreparable harm is being done to our economy because native peoples are being pushed out of sectors of the economy, and because brutal dumping of cheap foreign labor lowers real wages. The result is that the people become impoverished, and businesses lose highly qualified personnel due to emigration.
Central Bank policies
The government has lost control of the Central Bank and its leadership. Foreign exchange and financial policies serve the interests of the Federal Reserve of the USA and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and not the interests of Russia. Efforts to counter capital flight have been a complete failure, and it is increasing at record rates. According to official statistics of the Central Bank this amounted to $59 billion from January to September of 2021, which is 48% higher than the first 9 months of 2020.
The Ministry of Culture displays incompetence and lack of principles. Vitally important dates like the anniversaries of Prince Alexander Nevsky and Dostoevsky, and the 300 year anniversary of the Russian Empire were “overlooked”, while at the same time LGBT propaganda increases dramatically at film festivals and in theaters, exhibits of cadavers are held in galleries, and monuments to feces are erected. Harmful content which perverts the young is supported and encouraged, including on the main state-owned TV stations. Spiritual and moral education, and traditional family values are being neglected
The Ministry of Education is trying to move students to distance learning, ignoring that most important aspect of education - interaction between teacher and student. What’s more, non-vaccinated students are being prohibited from attending lessons, which deprives them of their right to education.
The Ministry of Sports has been sticking its head in the sand for years, meekly accepting the humiliation of our country, resulting in our athletes being forced to compete without flag or national anthem.
Technology and Digitalization
The Ministry of Digital Development, Communications, and Mass Media, which should be promoting new technologies, is instead obsessed with digital data collection and monitoring of the population, taking as their cue the recipes of Mr. Schwab and the Davos World Economic Forum. The Russian Government established the so-called “Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution” according to these recommendations.
The health system has been pushed into a severe crisis by the policies of the government. Panicked and ill-conceived anti-Covid measures are given top priority at the expense of growing death rates from other illnesses. Our national health system, funded by our taxes, is almost non-functioning. It is almost impossible to see a disease-specific specialist or receive care for more complicated illnesses.
The current government is not just the least competent in the history of modern Russia, but it is openly hostile to the people of Russia.
The recent efforts by the government to implement QR codes are the final straw. Our patience is at its end.
Vaccine use is regulated by a federal law 157-FZ, passed in 1998, entitled “On preventive immunity of infectious diseases.” None of the vaccines being used today in Russia against Covid have gone through clinical testing, as required by this law. Testing of EpiVacCorona is scheduled to end in December of 2021, and Sputnik, Kovivac, and Sputnik-Lite only in December of 2022. Thus, these vaccines are still experimental, and forcing people to take them is a clear violation of the ruling of the Nuremberg tribunal which prohibits medical experiments on people against their consent.
The vaccines are proven to have serious side effects, and are sometimes even lethal, and do not prevent individuals from becoming infected. Those who have had Covid have higher immunity than the vaccinated. But most importantly, the vaccinated are just as likely to be carriers of the disease as the unvaccinated. At the same time as they pushed for digitization of humans, the government also proposed a law requiring QR codes on livestock: on chickens, swine, and others. This at a time when our villages are dying out and the government is planning to rent 2.5 million acres of farmland to Uzbekistan.
For these reasons, implementation of QR-codes is preposterous and absurd. The actions of the government are not about preventing the spread of infection - they have an illegal goal - to force vaccinations on the people in a country where vaccinations are, by law, voluntary.
Key people in the government, who are in charge of the vaccination drive - Tatyana Golikova and Anna Popova - are affiliated with vaccine manufacturers. Are their multi-billion ruble profits interfering with their sense of right and wrong?
We hereby declare, that forced vaccination and forced use of QR-codes violate the following basic rights of Russian citizens, enshrined in our Constitution:
The right to freedom of travel (article 27)
The right to work and leisure (article 37)
The right to education (article 43)
The right to government social benefits (article 39)
The right to peaceful assembly (article 31)
The right to engage in entrepreneurial activity (article 34)
The right to protect one’s health and receive medical care from government health services (article 41)
Freedom from arbitrary arrest of detention (article 23)
We see a great danger in the activities of the current government, which has not only completely botched the task of improving demographics, but is now segregating people into two categories, which is causing social strife. Regional political leaders have been irresponsibly “putting the cart before the horse”, i.e., implementing instructions and recommendations from federal ministries and agencies before a federal law is even passed. In doing so, they have encountered strong opposition and disobedience from the public.
In the Tatarstan Republic there is a real “public transportation war” happening, which is seriously undermining the authority of the local government. In the Khanti-Mansiisk region, the unvaccinated have been put under effective house arrest, reminiscent of a ghetto system. This goes far beyond bungling. There is a real danger of a social uprising, a risk to the physical integrity of the country and its Constitutional system. This kind of behavior is punishable by law.
We, the undersigned, who are Russian traditionalists, are speaking out in defense of the future of our fatherland, our families, and our children. We demand an end to these anti-constitutional and anti-civil rights policies of the current government of Russia, and demand that it be dismissed, together with the Prime Minister.
After the recent elections to the Duma (the parliament), changes to the Constitution gave the Duma the authority to propose a new cabinet, which could form a government of national unity and reconciliation. We hope that you, President Putin, with the support of the traditionalists of Russia, who represent a majority of the population, will, together with the Duma, act on behalf of the will of the people.
Citizens of Russia