Pussy Riot Does Not Approve of Cutting Down Orthodox Crosses Bare-ChestedS

The fallout from Russian punk band Pussy Riot's conviction has led to sporadic protesting, some protests being just a touch more vigorous than others. Take, for example, the stunt one enterprising group of irreligious vandals pulled over the weekend in chopping down four wooden Orthodox crosses. Though the Russian Orthodox Church says this attack on religious iconography "revises and mocks the entire history of Russia," it seems that any anger Russia's clerics feel for Pussy Riot or their actual supporters would be misplaced in this instance, since the punk rockers have publicly disavowed the act, and at least one Russian journalist thinks that the cross-cutting is a political brainchild of the Kremlin, which hopes to undermine popular support for Pussy Riot.

The most recent incident follows an earlier cross-cutting on Aug. 17, the day three members of Pussy Riot were jailed in Moscow. A member of topless protesting brigade Femen used a chainsaw to cut down a cross, calling the act a show of solidarity between Femen and the punk group, "victims of the Kremlin pope regime."

Pussy Riot, however, distanced itself from Femen's unholstered breasts, and Pussy Riot supports such as liberal journalist Oleg Kashin suggested that such antagonistic protests were really being orchestrated by the Russian government to erode Pussy Riot's international good-will. "The cutting down of the crosses is, of course, a campaign," said Kashin. "And behind this campaign, most likely, stands the Kremlin." One of Pussy Riot's lawyers, Nikolai Polozov, added some historical perspective to the cross-cuttings, comparing them to the burning of the Reichstag (the German parliament building) in 1933, which was allegedly masterminded by the Nazis to discredit the communists.

Pussy Riot condemn the cutting down of four Orthodox crosses in Russia [Telegraph]