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Podcast: Can Anyone Fill Bonner's Shoes? Plus, Voices From Syria And A Crossword Controversy


Is there anyone among Russia's young activists who can fill the void left by the death of Yelena Bonner?

Is there anyone among Russia's young activists who can fill the void left by the death of Yelena Bonner?

Has Russia lost its greatest moral voice? In this week's show, we look at the legacy of Russian rights activist Yelena Bonner, whose death on June 18 silenced one of the most outspoken critics of both the Soviet regime and the era of Putinism.

Daisy Sindelar
Kirill Kobrin of RFE/RL's Russian Service joins correspondent Brian Whitmore, the author of our "Power Vertical" blog and podcast, to listen to excerpts from Bonner's last video interview and ask who, if anyone, is ready to take her place.

As Arab Spring protests continue to meet with a deadly crackdown in Syria, correspondent Kristin Deasy speaks to one protester who has already paid dearly for standing up to the state -- but says he won't give up.

Correspondent Ron Synovitz speaks to Sebastian Gorka, military affairs analyst with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, on the tangled web of relationships between the intelligence and military communities in the United States and Pakistan -- and the further snarls that have come in the wake of the killing of Osama bin Laden.

We also take a look at some of the underreported stories coming out of RFE/RL's 20 regional bureaus -- including a brewing scandal in Kazakhstan over a controversial crossword clue. Sometimes "yurt" really is a four-letter word.

This week's host is Daisy Sindelar.

Featured music includes "Gul Zwani aw Gul Khanda" by Sapna Tahir, "Zima" by Amir Benayoun, and Bach's Prelude to Suite No. 1 in G Major, performed by Mstislav Rostropovich.

Send your feedback to podcast@rferl.org, or leave a comment below. We'd love to hear from you.

Listen to or download Episode 24 of "The Blender" below or subscribe to "The Blender on iTunes. For the complete "Blender" archive, click here.

RFE/RL's The Blender -- 6/24/11 (Episode-24)
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