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Russians React to Prigozhin's Rebellion Through Memes

Prigozhin re-imaged as Forrest Gump. Social media

Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of Russia's Wagner mercenary group, launched a surprising attempt to stage a military rebellion on Friday evening. Prigozhin declared his armed campaign, which he dubbed a "march of justice," with the goal of holding the country's military leadership accountable.

In a fast-moving series of events, Wagner's forces advanced toward Moscow the following day after seizing control of the southern city of Rostov-on-Don, a major center of command for the war in Ukraine.

In times like these, sometimes all you can do is make some memes.

Here’s a look at some of our favorite memes from Prigozhin's aborted mutiny:

Prior to founding the Wagner Group, Prigozhin had a background in the catering business. He earned the moniker "Putin's Chef" for his involvement in supplying food to the Kremlin and various Russian elites.

Another meme referencing Prigozhin's culinary past.

Ratatouille: The rat turns out to be a chef


Iosif Prigozhin, a well-known music producer who shares the same last name as Yevgeny Prigozhin but has no family relation to him, featured prominently in many memes from this weekend.

These memes playfully swapped their roles, using images of Iosif Prigozhin to humorously depict him taking control of Dubai, alluding to a hypothetical military coup scenario.

The photo shows Iosif Prigozhin with his wife, the singer Valeriya.

Iosif Prigozhin shared his thoughts on the memes that confused him with the head of Wagner:

"It's not even laughter through tears. It was a great concern. And the fact that I was somehow trapped in this situation — I don't even know how to react. It's like a new role for me, reminiscent of some kind of fictional movie. It's a strange fusion in which I've been existing lately," Iosif Prigozhin said.

Following the arrival of the Wagner Group in Rostov-on-Don, some residents shared photos of the fighters, jokingly expressing their interest in finding potential romantic partners among them.

"Please find me, we were on Budennovsky [Prospekt]/Pushkinskaya [Ulitsa] at 4:43!! You guys are cute."

Following the negotiations between Prigozhin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko that led to the end of the rebellion, one meme depicted Lukashenko as Michael Jackson "lowering" a gun aimed at himself.

Meme-makers also showed Lukashenko saving the ill-fated Titan submersible.

- After 6 days, the passengers of the Titan submarine were rescued!

- But how?!?!

- ...

Some poked fun at the Moscow mayor's tendency to declare a citywide day off anytime anything goes wrong.

"Any bulls***: *happens*

Sobyanin: Let's rest!"

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