We all saw it at the Pro-Putin Anti-Ukraine Rally in February in DC.
It is a weird coalition, fans of people like Scott Ritter & Tara Reade - the far-right, some Libertarians, Ron Paul fans, LaRouche cultists... & some confused doctrinaire (tankie) members of the authoritarian left to form a great Red/Brown alliance of far-right & far-left. This has always been Dugin's Dream.
Sidney Blumenthal was a Clinton insider who was an early spreader of the racist birther conspiracy theory against Barrack Obama (on behalf of Hillary Clinton) in 2008. Interesting that he spread lies for money, just like his son Max Blumenthal, who lies professionally on behalf of Putin. Armchair psychologists will have to examine how the son of a Clinton insider lands up working for Putin, but, there it is. Max was at the famed RT banquet in Moscow featuring Putin, the stars of RT, Michael Flynn, and Jill Stein.
Max Blumenthal & Aaron Mate (who just got a "journalism" award from Ben Cohen of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream) think they are leftists, but they support Assad, deny his gas attacks & support Putin's invasion of Ukraine. Their Syria position is simply to support Putin. Same as cheering for anti-Macron rioters in France - it's really support for Le Pen & Putin.
It's a real mystery why anyone who considers themselves left, progressive, or radical would support Putin's invasion of Ukraine. Some of them simply support whoever is opposed to the US, UK, and Europe. Others seem to think Putin and Assad are somehow "progressive", "populist", socialist, or anti-(((Globalist))). And there are some, like Matt Taibbi & Glenn Greenwald. It seems certain that one day we'll learn they had compromising material on them, and/or they got paid millions of dollars.
But these confused "leftists" land up supporting some really fringe characters like Gonzalo Lira aka Coach Red Pill (misogynist, anti-semite, supporter of Pinochet, Putin & Trump) & fascists like Jackson Hinkle & Chuck Johnson.
But we've been here before...
The more you hear about the 1930s Holodomor, the show trials, and the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, etc., the more you have to wonder why and how The Allies thought Stalin would make a trustworthy ally in the fight against Nazism.
Of course, in the 1930s and 40s, they had their "tankie" defenders of Russia, just like we do today. New York Times Moscow bureau chief Walter Duranty whitewashed the Holodomor famine and Stalin's show trials time and time again, clearing the path for Stalin to be our ally instead of our rival. Those tankies back then could at least claim to be supporting would socialism. What do today's tankies support?
Some of it seems to be pro-Russian muscle memory from the old days (see Roger Waters) but the rest seems like "Blame America First" and an obsession with not having a "unipolar" world dominated by the United States. As Anarchists, we can easily criticize imperialism, whether its origin is U.S., UK, Russian, Chinese, or other. These tankies seem to only criticize Western imperialism.
But Russia is no longer officially communist or socialist. China is, but in practice is more like state capitalism. For the tankies, maybe a country just being a dictatorship is good enough for them. Of course Putin & Crew all started off as members of the CP in good standing... Putin was even KGB...