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US Foreign Policy And Biden's Response To Russian Protests

Russia Explaining the Crackdown
Dmitri Lovetsky
In this Sunday, Jan. 31, 2021 file photo, detained protesters walk escorted by police during a protest against the jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny in St. Petersburg, Russia. A prison sentence for Navalny and a sweeping crackdown on protesters demanding his release reflect the Kremlin’s steely determination to fend off threats to its political monopoly at any cost.

Yesterday, a Russian court jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. The opposition politician blamed the three and a half year sentence on President Vladimir Putin’s personal hatred for him. Nationwide protests calling for Navalny’s release began soon after.

On this edition of River to River, analysis of Russia's protests, Biden's phone call with Vladimir Putin and a look at the politics of Biden's vaccine rollout.


  • Wayne Moyer, professor of political science, Grinnell College
  • Jim McCormick, professor of political science, Iowa State University
Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River
Rick Brewer was a producer for IPR's Talk of Iowa and River to River