28 October 2020, Wednesday, 8:47
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We Are Watching the Jackal

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We Are Watching the Jackal
Iryna Khalip

The last lifetime portrait of the 3% regime.

For me, the best portrait of a withering regime is the AMAP on the Square of Changes. Guys in all-black clothes with all-black thoughts last week guarded the transformer box, smeared with all-black bitumen. Day and night, they stood guarding the box so that the local partisans did not dare to tear off the bitumen, and the silhouettes of two young people, who had played Tsoi's song at a state event a month and a half ago, did not appear on the wall.

Actually, I wanted to be indignant now and write that they were guarding the box for our taxes, that we pay them a salary for standing in the middle of an ordinary city courtyard, that the regime has completely run out of its mind in this show-off. And then I realized: okay, we, the people, will somehow cope with such expenses - this is a trifle compared to the most important role that the AMAP played. They are the last lifetime portrait of the 3% regime. They are the best of all possible and impossible demonstrations of his caricature. If that transformer box did not exist, it should have been invented. If the AMAP refused to dishonor themselves, standing in front of the box at night, they should have been driven there with threats and truncheons. Because even the best minds of our time could not come up with anything more eloquent to illustrate the state dementia.

Sasha "three percent," from a textbook tyrant, has finally turned into a caricatured character, dragging all his accomplices onto the pages of a comic book (or even a photoshop contest). At first, he carried a spitz with him in a bucket (at least he could have bought a branded handbag for a spitz, as glamorous young ladies do). Then he brought the participants of the picket to collect signatures by buses, without even trying to hide those buses around the corner; and every passer-by in the Uskhod metro area managed to shoot and post a video in which the indifferent members of Belaya Rus' are unloaded from the bus, lining up in a queue copied from Viktar Babaryka. Later, his condition began to worsen, because even the inexorable three percent figures were no longer shown to him, and then our cartoon character began to fly over the heads of Minsk residents in a helicopter, threatening from a height with a machine gun without a magazine, with his son Kolya in full gear. Then he held an emergency meeting, which was attended only by Kolya in the same outfit and press secretary Eismant in dirty "sweatshirts" who was clearly pulled either from the garden or from a picnic in nature. And he also invited Baskov to the Minsk-Arena, threatened to close the borders, frightened with a "white-red-white blitzkrieg."

And, of course, a trip to Sochi - where can we go without it? Not to Moscow: Putin would never accept a cartoon character officially in the Kremlin. And in Sochi - as if at the summer cottage, a drunken neighbor went to ask "three rubles" for a drink; it can happen to anyone, quite a common story. And indeed, hands are shaking, eyes are jumping, legs are dancing something dusty - it's a textbook image, in general. And I remembered that at the very beginning of our protests, the working telegram chat of Novaya Gazeta, dedicated to them, was called neutrally, something like "events in Minsk online." And a few days later, in mid-August, colleagues in Moscow, who were sitting 24 hours a day processing information from Belarus, renamed the chat. Now it is called "We are watching the jackal." This is what our former tyrant looks like under an impartial look from the outside.

But really. Jackal Tabaqui is the only character in Kipling's "The Jungle Book" who behaves with other characters (and muzzles) in such a way that you can only laugh at him or just brush it off. The only character who does not evoke anything but disgust. The only character to whom it is impossible to apply any "but" from the series "he is a scoundrel, but ...". There is no "but"; everything is clear. Flattering, cowardly, mean. The key phrase of the character is: "Sometimes I dream that I am Shere Khan, but every time I wake up as a jackal."

That's the thing. The jackal will never become a tiger. And he won't even become a spitz. His destiny is to wander through the garbage dumps, beg for a piece, eat carrion, and be despised by everyone. Even by these, in black clothes, who guard transformer boxes and other important government facilities. In Kipling's story, by the way, in the end, the jackal just breaks his back.

However, I do not exclude that Sasha "three percent" behaves so ostentatiously in an idiotic way, just so the future examination would suspect insanity. But in this case - it is rather weak, Sasha, we do not believe it. Now, if he starts to jump naked on the podium, maybe then we will believe. In addition to post number one, an ideal clinical picture will be obtained together with the transformer box situation.

Iryna Khalip, specially for Charter97.org