This Saturday, the scary but increasingly useless pro-Kremlin youth group “Nashi” had a rally in central Moscow. They bussed in thousands of kids. Many of them, a friend noted, were carrying shopping bags because the free trip to the capital is usually how they get these kiddos — 70,000 of them — to the rally.
Also, the souvenirs were great. Each rally participant got a single bullet on a necklace.
But because there’s no free trip to Zara, there was, as there always is, a catch: homework. This time, the kids were told, go home, make a movie about the World War II veteran in your life. You have until the end of the year. And if you fail at your mission to participate in this massive oral history project for which Nashi people have been canvassing Moscow for weeks, you have but one option: take that souvenir bullet, and shoot yourself.
“People asked me, ‘But what if I run out of time for making the tape?’” said Nashi commissar Maria Kislitsyna. “Well, take that bullet and think. And if you can’t think of the answer, ask a veteran — they’ll help you out!”