Czech Republic Reportedly Moves To Criminalize Speech in Favor of Putin or the Russian Invasion

This week, the Supreme State Attorney Igor Striz of the Czech Republic announced that the country is moving to criminalize speech supporting Russian President Vladimir Putin or the Russian invasion with sentences of up to three years. It is a curious way to fight tyranny . . . with tyrannical measures against free speech.

According to TN Nova, Czech police were already investigating dozens of cases.

Striz is reportedly relying on sections 365 and 405 of the Czech Criminal Code, which state that whoever publicly approves a crime or publicly praises the perpetrator can be imprisoned for up to a year, and that anyone who “publicly denies, questions, approves or seeks to justify Nazi, communist, or other genocide” can face a jail sentence of up to three years.

The laws would be unconstitutional in the United States. People often dismiss such objections as noting that other countries do not have the same commitment or protections to free speech. That is certainly true but it ignores that many of us believe that free speech is a human right. This is a denial of a right that should be protected in any country with such rights as free exercise.

The police have reportedly tweeted that “we have recorded dozens of internet comments expressing approval for the Russian invasion and the activities of the Russian army. We are closely monitoring the online sphere and apologize for not responding to every sign in the posts.”

If true, it is an affront not only to free speech but the cause of supporting Ukraine.  This is not an anti-Putin measure. It is precisely the type of measure used by Putin.

What is so striking is that this is a great example of where good speech will triumph over bad speech. The world is speaking with one voice against the war crimes being committed in Ukraine after this unprovoked and unjustified invasion. Indeed, Putin bizarre propaganda and crackdown on Russian media is only magnifying his lies and abuses. Ironically, there is no need to arrest the minority of voices supporting Putin or his war. Yet, people want the satisfaction of arresting those with opposing views. They are wrong. They degrade themselves, their country, and this cause with such anti-free speech measures.

156 thoughts on “Czech Republic Reportedly Moves To Criminalize Speech in Favor of Putin or the Russian Invasion”

  1. How arrogant can one man be? What he wants is more important than what millions of other people want?

  2. Putin’s service members shouldn’t even be in Ukraine, so if he doesn’t want them threatened by a no-fly zone, he should get them out of skies where they shouldn’t even be in the first place. The service members that SHOULD be in Ukraine are 1) Ukrainian service members, and 2) the service members of any country that Ukraine invites, such as Britian, France, or United States.

  3. If Russia can endanger Kyiv, then it’ s only fair that Ukraine can endanger Moscow. That would be morally equivalent.

  4. Putin is acting as if Ukrainian airspace is his. It’s not. It belongs to the Ukrainians, if they want NATO airplanes in their skies, that is their right as a sovereign nation.

  5. The NATO charter has gone the way of the Articles of Confederation and should be scrapped for something better.

  6. A threat is a threat is a threat and it must be dealt with regardless of who declares war on whom.

    1. There are multiple wars going on globally, on several continents.

      You think that the US should deal with all of them?

  7. Stopping a war is not the same as escalating a war. On the contrary, getting involved STOPS the enemy’s unilateral, incremental escalations.

  8. Americans wanting to stop Russian war of agression is an escalation by warmongers? This world is insane.

  9. “More deaths, more suffering and more destruction to come, and we’re not going to do a damned thing about it!” warns NATO.

  10. Putin is just as evil as Hitler was, if not more, and if a war is what it takes to stop and defeat Putin, then so be it.
    That was how Japan and Germany were stopped.
    Not going to war with Japan and Germany would have only made things worse.
    Not going to war with Russia is only making things worse in Europe.

    1. Japan and Germany both declared war on the US in 1941, and Japan attacked the US. That’s how we entered WW2.

      Russia has not declared war on the US or attacked us, and we should not preemptively declare war on Russia.

      We are already supporting Ukraine in many ways (financially, with weapons, with intel, …), and there are strong international sanctions on Russia and on the oligarchs that prop up Putin.

  11. “Putin warns no-fly zone over Ukraine will be seen as act of war.”

    But what he has been doing for the last 9 days haven’t been acts of war? Why is Putin at liberty to retaliate and escalate? NATO is the one who should feel at liberty to retaliate and escalate. Legally, it’s not his airspace, so he doesn’t get to dictate who can and cannot fly over Ukraine. His military is in a country he wasn’t invited in to. Putin invading the airspace of a sovereign country is the true act of war. The Ukrainians are the ones who get to say whether there should be a no-fly zone or not over their own country. This Putin guy is a piece of work. What a lot of nerve he has. He muscled his way into Syria, now he is muscling his way into Ukraine. The difference was that Syria invited him (assuming the government was legitimate), but Ukraine has not. The legal reasons against Putin doing everything that he is doing don’t seem to matter. They are mere abstractions versus his brute force.

    1. The Ukrainians do not have the air power to enforce a no-fly zone. That’s why they’re asking NATO to enforce it. But if NATO enforces it, then Russia — which has started a war with Ukraine, not NATO — will interpret that as NATO declaring war on Russia.

      Putin is an awful dictator, and I hope this war results in his downfall. But NATO should not enter the Russia-Ukraine war. NATO and other countries should continue providing other support to Ukraine and continue pressuring Russia with sanctions, etc.

      You seem to want this to turn into a World War (which is what it would be if NATO soldiers started fighting against Russia). I don’t think that is what’s best for people globally.

  12. Putin does not need NATO’s help in escalating this war. He is quite capable of escalating this war all by himself, taking it to the next level day after day.

  13. And don’t give me any crap about Article 5. That went out the window when NATO intervened in Libya. If they could intervene in Libya, the could intervene in
    Ukraine. NATO wasn’t afraid of Quadafi like it is afraid of Putin. What good is a defense organization against Russia when it is afraid of Russians?
    That’s like a lifeguard that is afraid of water, or a firefighter who is afraid of fire.

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