A year in exile. The cry of the soul of a Russian with anti-war views.
English version of my text, revised by the world’s largest media.
Hello! My name is Alexander. And I’m an emigrant. Refugee. A dissident forced out of the country, a soon-to-be foreign agent. I don’t even know how to indicate my status correctly. Probably the most accurate word would be “homeless” or “rootless.”
When an anti-Semitic campaign took place in the USSR under Stalin, Jews were called “rootless cosmopolitans.” I am not a Jew, but I seem to understand how the representatives of this people felt, forced to wander around the world for centuries.
I also understand how the anti-fascist Germans felt during the Second World War. It is as if I am on the pages of a Remarque novel. My wanderings are very similar to what the heroes of the novels of the German writer experienced. But, as in the case of Remarque, this is my life.
I understand that my problems are seemingly insignificant against the background of the problems of the residents of Ukraine, whose children have been killed for 600 days. Before the war, I often visited Kyiv. And I feel the pain of Ukrainians as if it was my own. It is absolutely impossible to me to live with this feeling of guilt!
But I still want to live. Live and fight. Fight against the evil and injustice that russian government is doing. The government and the president that I did not choose. Almost all of my loved ones and millions of civilians in Russia now are hostages to the criminal regime and to people who have succumbed to Kremlin propaganda.
I am 41 years old. And I still don’t have children. I didn’t want them to be born under this criminal regime, so that they would absorb cannibalistic propaganda. I understood that the children of Russians, who openly and publicly express their civic position, could become hostages. Already in the most literal, not figurative sense!
I left Russia a year ago. My wife joined me in the summer. I am now in my fifth country. I have an official refusal of a Turkish residence permit on hand.
I am in visa-free countries and have to constantly move because I cannot stay in my current countries for more than a month. This is local law.
And I’ve been waiting for six months for some kind of feedback on my application for a humanitarian visa from one of the European countries.
I am a journalist. Throughout my entire professional career, almost from the first days of Vladimir Putin’s rule, I tried to convey to my compatriots that our country has embarked on a disastrous path for it and for the whole world.
I was fired from work for my civic position many times, my blogs were hacked, I went to unauthorized rallies of the non-systemic opposition and was taken to the police station. Since 2014, I have no longer been able to engage in my professional activities. The state deprived me of my profession.
Poverty awaited me in Russia. But I focused on my personal blog and became a very popular regional blogger. Having no money, I created a business to finance my journalism.
However, the business has been hit hard by the Covid pandemic. And it became more and more difficult to continue working. Now my business is no longer there. Just like everything else. Like all my life. And my country. And I am stuck in the Balkan countries, unable to travel to countries whose democratic values I share.
My website Udikov.com (old address — udikov.ru), existing since 2009, is blocked in Russia. At the same time, I do not have the opportunity to monetize it outside of Russia, since the Google AdSense advertising system does not accept it. I got refuse for all three of my sites, including an innocent photo review of hotels.
Just in the last month, the Russian federal service Roskomnadzor blocked three of my blogs on the LiveJournal and Dzen platforms with 30 thousand subscribers, I practically lost my media resource. I no longer have the opportunity to earn money. However, I cannot obtain a residence permit in the country I am in. I just don’t have the money for it anymore.
I cannot return to Russia to apply for a Schengen visa and travel to countries where I will be safe and able to work. Because a prison awaits me in Russia. I am also unable to apply for a Schengen visa in my host country. Because this requires a residence permit.
Yes, there is a simple job here too. I can work at a construction site or wash dishes in a restaurant. But I can’t even rent a house with this money.
My journalistic case has been verified by international organizations such as RSF, CPJ and FPU. My fellow journalists provided me with real help. I am very grateful to them for that.
But a fact remains a fact. I’m stuck in the Balkans. My money is only enough for one month.
There is no normal work here, and all the sanctions that the world imposes supposedly against the criminal Kremlin regime, primarily hit opponents of the regime in exile, like me.
I ask you to change your attitude towards people who truly opposed Putin and the war. We can’t go back. In Russia we will be simply exterminated. The history of our country has clearly shown the fate of millions of dissidents under dictatorial regimes.
In any case, we do not give up and continue to fight. Our power is simply not infinite. And we also need a home. Or at least a temporary safe place where we can catch our breath and continue the fight…
independent journalist from Russia.
Now I’m in Montenegro.
My two channels on Zen, LiveJournal and my website were blocked by Roskomnadzor. This blog may also be blocked. Please subscribe to my telegram channel — t.me/udikov_am
My other materials on the topic (sorry, in Russian, for Russia — only with VPN):
- Do you really think that the life of an emigrant is like tourism?!. (10/17/2023)
© Hypertabloid editor Udikov | Udikov.com