Fascists have killed Anna Politkovskaya. She has been murdered by the
same gang that three years ago poisoned another contributor to Novaya
Gazeta, Yury Shchekochikhin. At that time those star-spangled FSB
generals were still just petty thieves extorting protection money from
furniture stores, without any particular ideological fig-leaf.
They got away with the murder of Shchekochikhin and of many others. They
became emboldened, acquired a taste for it, and the most enterprising of
them, who by now were asset-stripping oil and gas companies, broke
through into the charmed circle of the world's richest people.
In order to maintain themselves on this vertiginous peak in a country
one third of whose population lives below the poverty line, they need to
fool the people, to point the finger at "enemies of the nation""the
West, Caucasians and other non-Russian peoples living in Russia, the few
journalists still intrepid enough to criticize the Putin regime.
People are puzzled by the excesses of the campaign against Georgia,
openly and energetically fanned personally by our head of state. From a
geopolitical point of view it is counterproductive. Ethnic purges in the
streets of Moscow irretrievably undermine Russia's authority as a great
state and will sour relations"not only with Georgia, but also with all
our neighbors, for a long time to come.
On the other hand, these tactics appeal to the worst instincts of the
mob and make it a significant force supporting the regime.
Our head of state, a lawyer by training, has introduced a new term""the
native people," to which he contrasts "semi-gangster groupings that are
sometimes also ethnically tinted."
It would be difficult to make a more blatant appeal for racial attacks
in a country already riven with ethnic divisions. Russia's most active
neo-Nazi organization, the Movement Against Illegal Immigration,
promptly paid enthusiastic homage to Russian President Vladimir Putin,
seeing him as its ideological leader.
That Nazi, Alexander Dugin, who makes no secret of his infatuation with
the esthetic and practice of Hitler's SS, is never off the screen of the
state television stations, having now been promoted to the position of
one of the leading official ideologists of the regime.
The last document over the signature of Anna Politkovskaya was an appeal
to society and the state authorities to "Stop the Persecution of
Georgia." I am proud of the fact that my signature is alongside hers.
Mrs. Politkovskaya knew that she was doomed in Putin's Russia, and spoke
about this on more than one occasion. Her revelations about the massive
violations of human rights in Chechnya, which continue to this day,
about the shameful behavior of the state authorities during the
catastrophic hostage-takings of the audience of the Nord-Ost musical in
Moscow and of schoolchildren and their teachers and parents in Beslan,
were a red flag to the regime. There had already been more than one
attempt to kill her.
It is symbolic, and was almost predictable, that she should be murdered
in these dog days of the repulsive xenophobic bacchanalia that has
seized Russia. This is a time when everybody, the human trash in the
streets, the intellectual menials of the regime, has received from the
"demons" ensconced in the Kremlin what Dostoyevsky called, "a
dispensation to be dishonorable." Some of those particularly inebriated
by this right evidently decided to celebrate the birthday of their
beloved president in their own way.
We have lost our most honorable, intrepid and talented colleague. What
next? Go to the neo-Nazi Web site,
www.russianwill.org/material/vragi.html, which has existed unhindered on
the Internet for many years now. You will find there photographs and
home addresses of those they have condemned to death