Russians show patriotism by trashing pro-Western clothing

A pro-Kremlin group has set up street exchange points where Muscovites can hand in old T-shirts with English logos and get free T-shirts with belligerently pro-Russian wording.

“I just want to show my support for my country as it is being treated injustly by the West,” said student Sergei Seryogin after handing over four old T-shirts decorated with the emblems of US states.

“We have to show that we live well without the West,” said Denis Golovin, an accountant who had just pulled on a new T-shirt with the Coca-Cola slogan.

Russians are being urged by the group to trash Western T-shirts and put on new ones flaunting anti-sanctions slogans such as “We can get our kicks without your Coca-Cola.”

Other slogans riff unsubtly on Russia’s powerful missile capability. “Don’t make my Iskanders laugh,” reads one, while another says: “Topols aren’t scared of sanctions.”  “These sanctions have sparked a new patriotic spirit. Russia needs to show its strength,” said 23-year-old Archil Beniya.

Sanctions do not dampen support for Putin
The stunt seemed to score a hit with young Muscovites, who handed in more than 3 000 old T-shirts bearing slogans such as “I love NY” earlier in the week, said Ksenia Melnikova, one of the organisers from fundraising group Sodeistviye, or Co-operation.

Two construction firms paid to produce the 30 000 T-shirts, while a fashion designer helped to create them, Melnikova said on Wednesday.

Russians have previously flaunted their support for President Vladimir Putin with T-shirts praising the Russian forces who annexed Crimea and even skimpy knickers saying “Vova, I’m with you,” using a pet name for the Kremlin leader.

Successive rounds of Western sanctions punishing Moscow for its role in the Ukraine crisis have not dampened Russians’ support for Putin, who is still enjoying record approval ratings. 

Experts caution, however, that the effects of reciprocal sanctions have not yet hit home with the Russians. – AFP

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

Vaccine trial results due in December

If successful, it will then have to be manufactured and distributed

Time is not on our side in Libya

Simmering tensions could see the country partitioned between east and west

Coronavirus and the economy: We didn’t prepare for tough times

South Africa was well-placed for the 2008 crisis. But R3.18-trillion debt and low growth hamper its ability to limit the economic effects of Covid-19

South Africa must have a stake in artificial intelligence technology

The country needs an institute that will be a conduit for AI knowledge to industry, society and government

The fable of SA’s special economic zones

The country is being pushed to develop more SEZs. But is this a viable strategy, given unemployment and ‘deglobalisation’?

How South Africa and Germany can help the world

Both countries have a strong orientation towards multilateralism and democratic values

Sekhukhune’s five-year battle for water back in court

The residents of five villages are calling for the district municipal manager to be arrested

Vaccine trial results due in December

If successful, it will then have to be manufactured and distributed

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday