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Is Moscow "anti-vax"? (No.)
It's time to retire the myth that the Russian government opposes injections
I was deep in thought this morning. I was thinking about how it could be possible that our esteemed colleagues in the “alternative media” could put forward the reality-bending hypothesis that the Russian government is acting as a bulwark against global health destruction, or that it would somehow be problematic if the “worldwide freedom movement” (which doesn’t exist) wasn’t lavishly licking Moscow’s Ugg boots.
It would require a Tolstoy-length tome to properly unpack these riddles. So maybe this blog post will serve as Part I of a 100,000-part series exploring these deeply bizarre affronts to observable reality. (Actually, all you would have to do is compile this Substack blog into an e-book.)
But there is a revealing historical event that succinctly illustrates why you should laugh and laugh and laugh whenever a Very Serious Pundit suggests the Russian government is heroically fighting worldwide vax sadness.
Let’s go back in time to April 2019—almost a full year before COVID lockdowns arrived in Russia.
On April 4, 2019, TASS proudly reported that the State Duma would be hosting a roundtable discussion titled: “Refusal of vaccination is a serious threat of the 21st century: how to avoid epidemics.”
Some highlights from the article:
“Deputies and experts will discuss how to protect Russians from a new threat—the fashion that has spread in society to refuse preventive vaccinations, which could threaten epidemics of long-forgotten diseases,” the report says. […]
The press service noted that in 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) for the first time included the rejection of vaccinations in its list of global threats to humanity, along with wars, pollution, climate change, diabetes, cancer, and so on. […]
State Duma Committee on Health Protection deputy chairman Leonid Ogul (United Russia) does not rule out that following the results of the discussion, it will be necessary to adopt amendments to existing legislation: “For example, in terms of the requirements for examining children before vaccination, creating a single database on vaccination, expanding the list of professions that require mandatory vaccinations …” he said.
To summarize, in April 2019 the Russian government’s top health experts believed:
Refusing vaccination posed an existential threat to humanity—on par with climate change!
Legislation was needed to criminalize “anti-vaccine propaganda”.
Russia needed to create a “single database on vaccination”.
The list of professions that required mandatory vaccination should be expanded.
As the TASS article helpfully explained, all of the above measures were needed because even though doctors had been instructed to “identify unvaccinated children and adults”, the number of vaccine-hesitant Russians was growing. Good heavens.
The roundtable yielded the desired results. Parlamentskaia Gazeta, the official newspaper of Russia’s Federal Assembly, reported on April 11 that the Russian government would start cracking down on the anti-vax scourge.
From the article:
A mandatory vaccination passport for children may appear in Russia—deputies made such a proposal on April 11 at a roundtable in the State Duma on the topic “Refusal of vaccination is a serious threat of the 21st century.” The Ministry of Health, for its part, is preparing a package of bills providing for a ban on public calls not to be vaccinated, and the introduction of administrative liability for violators of this rule. […]
Also, according to Duma Deputy Leonid Ogul, it is worth discussing the introduction of mandatory vaccination passports for children. […]
The Ministry of Health also intends to toughen the fight against opponents of vaccination. Earlier, Tatyana Yakovleva, the first deputy head of the ministry, said that the Health Ministry was preparing a bill that would introduce a ban on “the dissemination of information containing public calls to refuse vaccination.
According to her, through the media, the Internet, and religious sects, “a large amount of information regarding vaccines and vaccination is being distributed, which is often not objective.”
“The dissemination of false and unscientific information about vaccinations really should be punished,” agrees Gennady Onishchenko, First Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Education and Science.
A year before COVID Terror. Think about it.
In December 2021, as the State Duma prepared to pass legislation creating a nationwide “health pass” (which thankfully failed thanks to public pushback), reports about this curious roundtable discussion resurfaced on Yaplakal, a popular Russian internet forum.
One enterprising Yaplakal reader summarized what was said during this prophetic 2019 summit. The bullet point list of what was discussed:
In 2019, the WHO included the rejection of vaccinations on its list of global threats to humanity (and apparently for the health of pharmaceutical companies).
About the need for Russia to commit to “vaccine-induced” disease prevention.
The fact that humanity has become vaccine-dependent (that is, it has a pharmaceutical dependence).
About the danger of the anti-vaccination lobby, that is, about any person who dares to ask questions about vaccination.
About the fact that the world is on the verge of a global threat (are they talking about COVID-19 months before it arrived?)
About adopting a law that would prohibit public statements against vaccination (any uncomfortable questions about vaccination would be considered public calls for refusal of vaccinations).
About the introduction of mandatory electronic vaccination certificates (wow, how interesting—but I thought these were invented in 2021 to reduce the transmission of coronavirus?)
The panel praised social media networks for vowing to crack down on anti-vaccination content, nine months before the COVID pandemic.
On the belief that “non-specialists” should not be allowed to question or enter into discussions with “specialists”
On the administrative prosecution of propaganda against vaccination
On holding parents responsible for refusing to vaccinate their children
On why a full physical examination is unnecessary before vaccination
On combating “false” claims about excessive side effects from vaccinations.
About the responsibility of medical workers to promote vaccination. If a doctor does not support vaccination, then he/she has no place in the medical community. (I don’t remember when medicine became a religion?)
They insisted that it is necessary to inject not only children, but also ensure Russians of all age groups are fully vaccinated.
Of course, it’s important to remember that when we’re discussing the machinations of the Russian government, things rarely go according to plan. So there’s good news, and there’s bad news. We’ll start with the good news first.
The good news
The good news is that despite Moscow’s best efforts, I think it’s safe to say that Russians have never been more anti-vax. I don’t think I need to explain why.
Also, I don’t actually think any of the proposed legislation was passed (although I’m not prepared to confirm this—maybe one of my cherished readers knows better).
The “mandatory vaccination passport” for children, as far as I know, also didn’t materialize.
From anecdotal evidence (and from speaking with other parents in Russia, both Russian and expatriates), it is still possible to protect your offspring from needless and possibly dangerous injections—although this becomes rather difficult if you intend to enroll your child in public schools (including kindergarten). Thankfully, homeschooling is legal in Russia.
It’s also possible to find employment in Russia without being subjected to various “mandatory” vaccinations, but certain sectors will be off-limits to you.
So what has happened in Russia since April 2019 is rather remarkable: The government has become more vax crazy, while the citizenry has never been more suspicious of Big Pharma and WHO-endorsed “disease prevention”.
This of course begs the question: Who does the government work for? Ha-ha.
There are still periodic attempts by the State Duma to punish those who have the audacity to defy Global Health, but these efforts continue to run into problems (the Russian people).
For example, in February 2023, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Health Tatyana Solomatina proposed labeling ant-vaxxers as “extremists”. She had to apologize for this bad idea several hours later.
The bad news
The bad news is that just like everywhere else in the world, in Russia “the law” is meaningless, and the government basically does whatever it wants.
Some Kremlin fan fiction writers have tried to argue that coercive vaccination violates Russia’s constitution, and therefore could never be carried out in practice. Well, this is obviously not true—and we know it’s not true because even the federal government explained how it could “legally” force injections on people.
In June 2021—when compulsory vaccination “officially” began in Russia—Labor Minister Anton Kotyakov acknowledged it would be unlawful for employers to fire workers who refused the clot-shot. He corrected himself several hours later, noting it would be perfectly legal for unvaccinated employees to be “suspended indefinitely” without pay. Loopholes are fun.
What made Kotyakov change his interpretation of the law? Probably Russia’s Minister of Labor received an angry phone call from an obscure regional governor, demanding that the federal government change its tune. Yes, let’s go with that. It was the devious regions. If only there were no regional governments, Russia’s federal government would be an oasis of worldwide freedom.
But it gets worse (sorry). In November 2021, Roszdravnadzor, Russia’s Federal Service for Supervision of Healthcare, ordered healthcare workers to snitch on vaccine-hesitant doctors to the authorities.
Roszdravnadzor’s press service confirmed that the federal agency would start hunting “citizens, especially medical workers, participating in the anti-vaccination campaign” and “actively disseminating knowingly false information about the dangers of vaccination.”
Russian outlet Znak explained:
The head of Roszdravnadzor, Alla Samoilova, noted that interfering with [COVID] vaccination could be interpreted as a violation of “Articles 207.1 and 207.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation."
Article 207.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (public dissemination of knowingly false information about circumstances that pose a threat to the life and safety of citizens) provides for a fine of 300 thousand rubles and/or up to three years in prison. Those guilty under Article 207.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (public dissemination of knowingly false socially significant information that entailed grave consequences) face a fine of 700 thousand rubles, correctional or forced labor, or imprisonment for up to three years. If as a result of the act the death of a person occurs, the punishment can be up to five years in prison.
A day earlier, it became known that employees of the Roszdravnadzor in the Rostov region applied to the prosecutor’s office with a statement to check on reports of dissemination of knowingly false information about the dangers of [COVID] vaccination.
So even if the April 2019 roundtable failed to produce new legislation, the Russian government still found a way to threaten and intimidate anyone who dared to ask uncomfortable questions about its beloved untested genetic slurry.
There’s more recent bad news, but I’m trying to relay information that I haven’t already covered in detail.
Anyway. Is Moscow “anti-vax”? Unfortunately, no—which is a pity, because it would be if it cared at all about public opinion.
“Welcome to 2023.”
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