The Monitor's View Why Russians march: to replace 'campaigns of hate'

A huge rally in Moscow in memory of slain dissident Boris Nemtsov also focused on state-run media's vilification of critics of Putin's policies. Demonization, either in Russia or by the West, must end to help solve issues like Ukraine.

AP Photo

In unexpected numbers, about 50,000 Russians marched in Moscow on Sunday in memory of Boris Nemtsov, a prominent pro-democracy figure gunned down just two days before. Yet the purpose of the march was not only to memorialize what he stood for. As another dissident, Gennady Gudkov, told Reuters: “If we can stop the campaign of hate that’s being directed at the opposition, then we have a chance to change Russia.”