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In Photos: How Putin's Address Really Was One to the Entire Nation

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday gave his much-anticipated first address to the nation since ordering the invasion of Ukraine exactly a year ago. However, the members of the Putinist elite invited to Moscow's Gostiny Dvor for the event were far from the only people listening to the proceedings.

As members of both chambers of Russia's parliament, cabinet ministers, regional politicians, military top brass, business leaders, and cultural figures all took their seats in Moscow, the spectacle was broadcast across Russia's 11 time zones on multiple TV and media channels, in government buildings, educational facilities and even in public spaces.

Soldiers on the frontlines in Ukraine, university students, and even those just out walking the dog were left with little choice but to listen to the head of state defend his "special military operation" with selective readings of history while also castigating the West for its attempts to destroy Russia.