I looked at photos posted on social networks about how people of Russia spent their last night after the ruble exchange rate collapsed. The inhabitants of the neighboring country spent it in long store lines. They grabbed any product that can be bought at the old pre-collapse prices: home appliances, consumer electronics, gadgets, clothes, food. Following the Black Tuesday, last night in Russia could be called “Night of Big Purchases.”
Lines were so long that their ends were beyond the line of sight. Faces of people were sullen and concentrated. Some store shelves were already empty.
And then I felt a strong sense of deja vu: we have seen all that before. No, not in the 1990s. We saw it all of it in the Crimea in the spring of 2014.
There were long lines there too. And there were empty store shelves. And people there suddenly were left without money. And some people even lost their homes.
Russia wanted to absorb the Crimea and it was successful: the Crimea rapidly came to Moscow and St.Petersburg. The Crimea arrived to them with all of its meaningless lines, empty store shelves and sullen faces.
Now I know what will happen next.
Expect to see so-called “self-defense forces” in the streets of Moscow. Expect the Cossacks patrolling the Neva River embankments in St.Petersburg. Expect prowling crowds of ecstatic old women attacking anything that’s alive, breathing, and thinking.
Just wait and pray, because the next phase is a “people’s republic,” with its checkpoints, warlords, and basements where they torture people.
I’m sorry, but it looks like there will be no Maidan in Russia.
You better run.
– Lesia Prymorska, a Crimea resident