#SochiHaiku Hashtag Shows Anger At Olympics And Russia

“Welcome to Sochi/Let’s hope nothing starts to fall/Except for Putin.”

1. The state-owned publication Russia Beyond the Headlines (RBTH) sent out a request to their Twitter followers on Saturday to write a haiku about the Sochi Olympics.

RBTH is produced by Rossiyskaya Gazeta, “the Russian government’s paper of record,” according to its website. In addition to the site, RBTH supplements appear in international newspapers like The New York Times and Le Monde.

3. People on Twitter responded to the haiku request, but most of the poems were filled with caustic anti-government and anti-Olympics sentiment.

5. Many of the haikus featured criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin and other government leaders.

#Sochi #Olympics / A vast mass of #corruption / #Putin's pockets plump - #sochihaiku #Sochi2014

— Ani Wandaryan (@GoldenTent)

11. Others were critical of Russia’s harsh policing tactics.

14. Some used the hashtag to comment on the ethnic cleansing of the Circassian ethnic group in the 19th century on the land that will host the Olympics next month.

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Rachel Zarrell is a news editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Rachel Zarrell at

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