Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician
Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician
Photo: Reuters
Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician

Jewish Russian pop superstar comes out against Ukraine offensive

Alla Pugacheva, who fled to Israel for a brief period with her husband Maxim Galkin at onset of war, says she wishes for 'end of deaths of our boys for illusory goals'; Galkin was labeled 'enemy of the people' in wake of anti-war remarks

AFP, Ynet |
Published: 09.19.22, 10:57
Jewish Russian pop superstar Alla Pugacheva on Sunday denounced the Ukraine conflict and the "death of our boys for illusory goals" amid severe repression of any anti-Kremlin criticism.
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  • This is the first time that the legendary crooner has publicly spoken out about the Ukraine offensive. Pugacheva has met several times with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but she has never publicly supported him.
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    Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician
    Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician
    Alla Pugacheva arrives to pay her last respects to Iosif Kobzon, a veteran Russian singer and pro-Kremlin politician
    (Photo: Reuters)
    Her husband Maxim Galkin had just been recognized as a foreign agent - a label reminiscent of "enemy of the people" that has been used extensively against opponents, journalists and human rights activists.
    "I am asking you to include me on the foreign agents list of my beloved country," 73-year-old Pugacheva told the Russian justice ministry - and her 3.5 million followers - on Instagram.
    "Because I stand in solidarity with my husband, who is an honest and ethical person, a true and incorruptible Russian patriot, who only wishes for prosperity, peace and freedom of expression in his Motherland," Pugacheva said.
    Pugacheva added that her husband wanted "the end of the deaths of our boys for illusory goals that make our country a pariah and weigh heavily on the lives of its citizens".
    The pop star's husband Maxim Galkin - a TV presenter and a comic now living abroad - has often criticized the operation in Ukraine. Russian media said Pugacheva left the country after the beginning of the offensive.
    After fleeing, the pair reportedly lived in Israel for several months before moving to Latvia. Galkin, meanwhile, has given a host of stand-up shows in Israeli cities in recent months, where he reportedly criticized the war in Ukraine, saying, "It does not matter, they'll never let me back in anyway."
    Pugacheva's father is Jewish and she is known for her frequent visits to the Jewish state.
    She reportedly went back to Moscow for the funeral of the last Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev - who tried to initiate democratic reforms - on September 3.
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Russian pop singer Alla Pugacheva pose for a photo during an awards ceremony in Moscow's Kremlin
    Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Russian pop singer Alla Pugacheva pose for a photo during an awards ceremony in Moscow's Kremlin
    Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Russian pop singer Alla Pugacheva pose for a photo during an awards ceremony in Moscow's Kremlin in 2014
    (Photo: AP)
    Russian authorities have clamped down on any criticism of the offensive in Ukraine, handing out fines and prison sentences. Many Russian artists who denounced the conflict had their shows cancelled.
    She became hugely popular in Soviet times and remained so ever since. Pugacheva has sold more than 250 million records, and her repertoire includes over 500 songs in Russian, English, German, French, Kazakh, Hebrew, Finnish, Ukrainian.

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