This article examines how repression in semiauthoritarian regimes affects collective action by comparing antiwar protesting during Russia's first (1994–96) and second (1999–) Chechen wars. Vladimir Putin's creeping authoritarianism acts as a "natural experiment" where we can study collective action before, during, and after the introduction of restrictive measures. Two key findings emerge. First, despite the Kremlin's increasingly heavy hand, antiwar actions have grown in size and frequency over the course of Putin's tenure. Second, the movement's failure to replicate its Yeltsin-era success in forcing a peace, albeit temporary, in Chechnya is due to organizational culture, not state repression. Indeed, the antiwar movement's prevailing cultural norms have undercut mobilization by locking activists into using symbolic appeals that ring hollow among Russians. Activists are thus unable to wield latent antiwar sentiment as a cudgel to entrap the Kremlin into reversing course. This argument is supported by a protest data set, primary documents, interviews, and participant observation.