On Saturday, prominent pro-war ideologue Darya Dugina – daughter of Vladimir Putin confident Alexander Dugin – was killed in a car bomb explosion, shortly after leaving a literary and arts festival outside of Moscow. There has been speculation that Dugin who is often called Putin’s brain and the architect of the conflict in Ukraine may have been his target. Dugin was supposed to be driving back to Central Moscow along with his daughter. However, he decided last-minute to ride in another vehicle.
Dugin reacts to the death of his daughter in a video that was widely distributed on social media. As he looked at the fiery wreck, he could be seen shaking his head. A lot of rubble could also be seen on the roads.
The video has been viewed thousands upon thousands of times.
Russia’s Federal Security Service, (FSB), claimed Monday that it had solved the case and that it was blaming a Ukrainian operative.
Dugin made a statement about Sunday’s assassination on Sunday, painting her as a martyr.
Telegram posted the following statement: “My daughter Darya Dugina died in my arms.” Her beauty was Orthodox and she was also a soldier, journalist, war correspondent, expert in central TV programming, philosopher, etc. Only our victory is necessary. My young daughter gave up her own life in order to achieve it. It is possible, so please do!
Daria Dugina: The Worst
A 22-year-old Russian cheerleader reported receiving condolences and remarks on her social-media accounts since Saturday.
Daria Dugina, a similar-named Daria Dugina posted “I’M AlIVE” on her Instagram account. The account was closed at that point, and she said that it is impossible to delete comments.
How fitting is this response to mocking the dead?
Although a few social media users condemned Darya Dugina’s murder, many others responded with videos of Darya on Russian State TV. She vocally and passionately supports the war against Ukraine.
Others took the joke to Twitter and made memes mocking her father’s reactions. One meme evoked Edvard Munch’s The Scream while another captioned it, “That feeling that you get when you daughter gets blown up without your permission.”
Many people who are vocal supporters of Ukraine suggest that such a disregard for the deceased may not be wise. Matthew Schmidt (Ph.D.), University of New Haven associate professor of political science and national security.
Schmidt stated that “the types of memes you see and the kind of mockery on social media dehumanizes” the Dugins. This dehumanizes Alexander’s pain. This is like saying, “Don’t make fun of Joseph Goebbels daughter’s death,” right? Because both Dugins participated in propaganda that allowed Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. It also opened up the possibility for horrific human rights violations as well as murder.
Schmidt suggested that instead of celebrating Darya’s passing, it might be used to highlight the suffering of others in Ukraine who lost their loved ones during the unprovoked conflict. I would rather use the opportunity to highlight their brutality than mock them.