June 10, 2011

FRIDAY JUNE 10 CONTENTS

(1)  EDITORIAL:  Putin the Road Hog

(2)  EDITORIAL:  Lebedev Goes Down

(3)  Putin Carries on Hitler’s Work

(4)  Why RT won’t Call itself “Russia Today”

(5)  Medvedev, on his Knees

(6)  Russia at Roland Garros

(7)  One Photo is Worth a Thousand Screams

31 responses to “June 10, 2011

  1. 3 Men Convicted of Killing Opponent of Chechnya’s Leader
    By ELLEN BARRY
    Published: June 1, 2011

    MOSCOW — A jury in Vienna on Wednesday convicted three Chechen exiles in the murder of Umar S. Israilov, a bodyguard who had turned against his former employer, the Chechen leader Ramzan A. Kadyrov.

    Mr. Israilov had filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights against Mr. Kadyrov, who he said had participated in kidnappings, torture and killings as part of an attempt to quash Chechnya’s separatist movement. He was shot and killed in January 2009 as he left a grocery store in Vienna.

    The jury sentenced Otto Kaltenbrunner, who is believed to have organized the shooting, to life in prison; Muslim Dadayev, who drove the getaway car, to 19 years; and Turpal Ali Yesherkayev, an accomplice, to 16 years in prison. A fourth suspect, Lecha Bogatirov, who is believed to have fired the three shots that killed Mr. Israilov, left Austria and returned to Russia after the killing, Austrian investigators said.

    The Austrian prosecutors said that they concluded that Mr. Kadyrov had ordered Mr. Israilov’s abduction, which went awry as the men tried to snatch him on the street, but that they lacked sufficient evidence to charge him. At the time, Mr. Kadyrov denied the accusation, suggesting that the killers were trying to frame him.

    During the trial, the prosecutors clearly depicted Mr. Israilov’s murder as a political one that had been carried out on Austrian territory, said Wenzel Michalski, the Germany director for Human Rights Watch. He said the next step should be prosecuting the gunman and mastermind behind the crime.

    “For us, it is important that it shines light on Russia, and the fact the Russia is not really helping the authorities here in investigating the case,” Mr. Michalski said. He described the three convicted men as “just contract killers.”

    “The people behind them — the big dons — they sit somewhere in Chechnya,” he said.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/02/world/europe/02chechnya.html

    The execution-style shooting in 2009 was one in a series of killings of activists and others critical of the Chechen leadership in past years, including Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya.

    Israilov was shot after he had initiated legal steps against Kadyrov, claiming that the Moscow-friendly politician had tortured him.

    “By linking the charges of murder and extradition to a foreign power, the court made clear that the masterminds are to be found abroad and that it was a political contract killing,” said Heinz Patzelt, who heads the Austrian chapter of the rights group Amnesty International.

    Judicial authorities in Moscow have not responded to Austria’s request to interrogate Kadyrov.

    http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/06/01/2246162/3-convicted-of-killing-chechen.html

    • Israilov was gunned down on a Vienna street on January 19, 2009 in a case that proved embarrassing for Austrian authorities after it emerged he had been denied their help after alerting them that he believed he was being followed and in danger of losing his life.

      http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory?id=13732640

      Austrian police believe Mr Kadyrov had ordered Israilov’s abduction and that he was killed when he tried to escape.

      The 27-year-old sought asylum in Austria after telling the European Court of Human Rights and Western journalists that he had witnessed Mr Kadyrov personally taking part in torture sessions.

      The Chechen leader strongly denied any involvement and attempts by investigators to question him failed. Prosecutors said they did not have enough evidence to charge him, but he had close ties to the defendants.

      Kaltenbrunner, Dadayev and Yesherkayev were charged with accessory to murder, forming a criminal organisation and attempted kidnapping.

      Prosecutors had earlier called for them all to be given life sentences, while their lawyers had asked for acquittals.

      The man who is believed to have actually fired the hail of bullets which killed Israilov, Lecha Bogatirov, is still on the run.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-13621483

  2. The statements “Lecha Bogatirov, who is believed to have fired the three shots that killed Mr. Israilov, left Austria and returned to Russia after the killing,” and ““For us, it is important that it shines light on Russia, and the fact the Russia is not really helping the authorities here in investigating the case.” Really shows up Putin controlled Russia for the KGB controlled “evil empire” it really is.

    The stupidity of these communist goons is unbelievable, destroying this country while they live opulently in their magnificent B/S castles, built at the long suffering expense of the average Russian.

    But like all evil empires they will one day fall and be destined, with their leaders, to the dustbin of history, when truth will then also finally triumph.

    • @”Lecha Bogatirov, who is believed to have fired the three shots that killed Mr. Israilov, left Austria and returned to Russia after the killing,”

      You know, he was even actually wounded in January when he tried to assassinate an another enemy of Kadyrov!

      This time near Grozny – “Lecha B.” took part in an attempt by “the police” to kill a Chechen officer in the GRU special forces. But they botched this just as he had previously botched the kidnapping job in Vienna (they only managed to injure the target, killing his driver, and the second would-be assassin was then even killed when the victim’s bodyguards returned fire and hit the snipers):

      http://www.rferl.org/content/chechen_israilov_murder_suspect_wounded/2280091.html

      2 months earlier before this, he was also spotted in the Russian TV propaganda broadcast (first from the left in the screenshot, beared and wearing a camoflage uniform):

      http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,730811,00.html

  3. International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
    Austrian Helsinki Association for Human Rights
    Norwegian Helsinki Committee, Oslo
    Human Rights Centre “Memorial”, Moscow
    People in Need, Prague
    Novaya Gazeta, Moscow

    Trial in Vienna: The Victory of Justice

    http://www.memo.ru/eng/news/2011/06/03/0306113.html

    On June 1, 2011 a verdict was pronounced in the Israilov case in Vienna. The coalition of human rights organizations which monitored the trial welcomes this verdict. Its legal and historical importance cannot be overestimated. A crime of the Chechen authorities is condemned for the first time by a truly free and independent court.

    The Viennese Criminal Court sentenced three individuals for the murder on January 13, 2009 of Umar Israilov, a Chechen refugee, who dared to bring evidence on torture committed on him personally by Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov. The trial also shed light on the widespread violence, arbitrariness and illegal detention system in contemporary Chechnya.

    Three Chechen men were sentenced, Otto Kaltenbrunner (born Ramzan Edilov) to life imprisonment, Suleyman Dadaev (alias Muslim Dadaev) to 19 years and two months of imprisonment and Turpal Ali Yeshurkaev to 16 years for their participation in the murder which followed an aborted attempt to kidnap Umar Israilov in order to “hand him over to a foreign power”, i.e. to the Chechen authorities. The verdict was brought unanimously by the jury.

    “Our coalition observed a trial that diligently fulfilled all the standards and principles of a free and fair trial with a well documented and well argumented indictment, a professional and competent judge and prosecutor and a motivated jury who did take its responsibilities very seriously. The jury listened attentively to witness’ testimonies through these long months and the 17 court sessions and asked important questions”, declared Joachim Frank from Austrian Helsinki Association for Human Rights (AHA) on behalf of the coalition.

    The trial started on November, 16 2010 and heard some dozens of witness testimonies, including those of three high level experts on Chechnya and the North Caucasus, Dick Marty, Rapporteur for the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Lord Judd, Rapporteur for the British Parliament and Dr. Aude Merlin, Professor at the Brussels Free University and FIDH mission representative. Their testimonies drew a dark picture of the grave crimes committed in Chechnya and the general impunity prevailing there, which is countenanced by the highest authorities of the Russian Federation, and is spreading all over Russia.

    Israilov’s murder has sent a strong signal to the whole Chechen community around the world that despite the political asylum they might obtain outside Russia, it doesn’t provide them a protection from the arbitrariness of the Chechen power structures. Today’s verdict showed that at least in Europe such crimes are not tolerated and don’t remain unpunished.

    The coalition once again regrets the unwillingness of the Russian Justice system to cooperate with their Austrian colleagues. Their ignoration of a request for legal aid, aiming to interrogate five key witnesses, including the alleged killer and the President of Chechen Republic, Ramzan Kadyrov. Kadyrov would have had to answer questions about his relation to Kaltenbrunner, Turlaev, Kurmakaev and about telephone talks on the day of the murder. The inactivity of the Public prosecutor’s office of the Russian Federation showed the total absence of a political will to fight against impunity in current Russia.

    More worryingly, most of the persons requested, including the presumed killer Lecha Bagatirov and former presidential advisor Shaa (Shakha) Turlaev are openly living in Chechnya. The coalition reminds that Shaa Turlaev was already declared accused in March 2010 in Russia in the case of a failed murder attempt of Isa Yamadaev in June 2009 by Khavazhi Yusupov, who was sentenced to 8 years and a half for this crime. The whereabouts of Shaa Turlaev were declared unidentified. Thus, according to the information available he is openly residing in Chechnya. In the testimonies of Kavazhi Yusupov and in the audio-tapes provided by the investigation, it is said very clearly that Yusupov was taken by Shaa Turlaev to Kadyrov’s house twice where his and his family’s security was repeatedly threatened by Kadyrov personally and an important compensation was promised in case he agrees to kill Isa Yamadaev. However, no legal investigations followed this allegations and in the verdict it was stated that Turlaev acted on behalf of the “unidentified persons” who promised 3 000 000 dollars in case the crime is committed.

    Umar Israilov’s case in Vienna could discontinue a long list of unpunished murders: in Chechnya and in Russia in general justice as a rule finds itself helpless and weak-willed. But this time, the responsibility was established, those guilty are called by names and the Austrian Justice has recognized that Chechen leadership was behind the crime. And this is a victory of Justice in the Vienna case.

  4. RG

    What can be expected from Russia? I mean just look at that “Chekist” (the KGB name used for themselves) Putin and his murderous cohorts who use all possible illegal methods to enforce their tyranny to subdue and cower the Russian population into submission.

    • Now Kadyrov is also part of KGB… Its getting curiosier and curiosier…

      • Kadyrov-2 is an FSB agent since at least 2000.

        Officially, he’s also a major-general in the Russian Interior Ministry but only since 2009 (before this he held no formal rank in the MVD at all).

        Here’s his “general of the police” uniform: http://gdb.rferl.org/DB9E0DEA-87B0-475E-B263-CEFCA08A5F8B_mw800_mh600_s.jpg

        • I don’t know what most people on this planet see, but in the United States at least, National Guard are not police

          • What was this about? Medvedev’s abortive idea to rename OMON as “National Guard” when the national police got re-estabilished in Russia after almost 100 years of “the militia”?

            • There was a message from Dmitry about this, but that message has disappeared. I don’t think the essence will change if they simply change the name

              • RV

                You’re are spot on there with your remark that “I don’t think the essence will change if they simply change the name.” What’s that old saying “A leopard never changes its spots.”

                • As far as I know, that OMON is a paramilitary group doing various dirty jobs such as beating up unsanctioned protesters, etc. Dmitry tried to say it was just like National Guard. To which I replied that at least in the U.S., National Guard is a part of the Armed Forces (Army, Navy, Air Force, etc.) and has nothing to do with police operations

                  • I say, you should simply never read anything Dmitry writes. That’s what I do and I miss just nothing.

                    OMON stands for “special-purpose units of the militsya”. Even Google is confused how to translate it, used to be translated as “riot police”, now it’s “SWAT”. They’re uniformed thugs, and they did much worse than just beating people. For example, http://www.watchdog.cz/?show=000000-000024-000006-000011&lang=1

                    • Sounds like paramilitary killer squads that used to be common in Central America and other places

                    • As I said, it’s just thugs in uniform – a criminal group that officially works for “law enforcement”, and http://www.rferl.org/content/Police_Raid_Offices_Of_Russian_Opposition_Weekly/2146432.html is a recent example of what OMON does even well outside of war zones, in the capital, when not busy beating the demonstrators (organised racketeering, slavery and other such mafiya stuff).

                    • And here’s the RT version of the story: http://rt.com/news/omon-russia-article-scandal/

                      And Kadyrov’s autonomous/private Chechen OMON is like that:

                      The Joint Mobile Group and Novaya Gazeta, a leading independent Russian newspaper, reported that at a ministerial meeting in February 2011 in Grozny where the case was discussed, the head of the Chechen OMON threatened that if [federal] investigators tried to enter OMON premises, he would order his officers to open fire.
                      http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,,,,RUS,,4d75d3b117,0.html

                      These guys are former “terrorists”, now they’re “law enforcers” working for the “Hero of Russia”.

      • Really AT, do you have to show your lack of knowledge in such remarkable fashion?

        No wonder you are such an idiot.

  5. Can you post a copy of his appointment letter, or would it be another 5-page quote from a terrorist site?

    • Although never mind. Next you will say that I am Kadyrov’s fan.

    • Of course, AT. I have all of his documents, including regarding him being the “Hero of the Russian Federation”, “Honorary Citizen of the Chechen R.”, “Honorary Member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences”, “Honored Worker of Physical Culture”, and “The Man of the Year 2004 in the Chechen Republic”.

      (Cited directly from “All about our President”: http://chechnyatoday.com/en/content/blogsection/21/317/ – “He is a candidate for the title of Master of Sports in Boxing.”)

      A terrorist website in question is here: http://www.fsb.ru/ (this terrorist organization murdered millions of people, mostly in Russia but also in the nearby countries and around the globe) but I don’t think they have such things on a display.

      @Next you will say that I am Kadyrov’s fan.

      Oh, so you’re not? Why is that? Shouldn’t Russia give love to her “Heroes”? I say you should go and join Ramzan’s fan club, they do “march against terrorism” and all that – http://www.themoscownews.com/theweekinreview/20110127/188372280.html – so I guess you’ll love it.

      A local RAMZAN Fan Club looks like this on outside and inside, if you’d like to organize one:

      • Still what makes Kadyrov an FSB agent?

        • Ramzan’s an FSB man (he took over the Chechen MVD forcibly, sidelining and/or killing all these who opposed him), while the Yamdayevs were the GRU (but he defeated them too, then killed most of their brothers). His status was always unofficial, but Baysarov, the first chief of his father’s bodyguard (Ramzan took over after some time) had an official rank of lieutenant colonel in the FSB (Ramzan has purged also him, then his “policemen” tracked him down and murdered him on a street in central Moscow – http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2006/dec/01/worlddispatch.russia – “to the shock of passers-by on the busy shopping street” not unlike the murder in Vienna, except this one was not really investigated, like the others in Moscow too). Officially, Ramzan’s only rank ever is the general of the police, bestowed on him in 2009. Other than that, he was always just “the boss” (since 2004, after his dad blew up, when he was selected by Putin to take over and do whatever he wants anywhere). Anyway, his deeply intimate relationship with the FSB was never a secret.

          • Still what makes Kadyrov an FSB agent? The first chief of his father’s bodyguard had an official rank of lieutenant colonel in the FSB ok over after some time. My contractor is a former fighter pilot. Does this make me a fighter pilot?

            • Not “over after some time”, they just gave him command over a company-sized FSB wet-work (aka death squad) unit “Highlander” (Горец) so he could kidnap, torture and murder the alleged rebel sympathisers (and he still had an FSB ID when he was killed), while Ramzan took over the daddy’s bodyguard, the “Presidential Guard Service” (Службой безопасности президента), better known as the Kadyrovtsy (Кадыровцы) – run by the FSB, not by the Chechen MVD (which at first was even headed by Beslan Gantamirov, who was the Kadyrovs’ bitter rival and now is nobody but at least is somehow still alive in Moscow), and of course not by the Army.

              Ramzan quickly expanded the Guard to several thousand strong, taking or forcing into (“join or else”, and they meant it) most of the surrendering fighters, whom he personally amnestied (when the paramilitary was disbanded, they were moved into the Chechen MVD, at this time Kadyrov’s personal force too). And his rise after 2004 to the de-facto and then official sole dictator of Chechnya was enabled by Putin personally (you see, by then Ramzan wasn’t that much respected even by his own men – http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2004/may/21/russia.chechnya – they respected Kadyrov-1 so much more), and Ramzan does not even hide it at all every time he praises Putin.

              He’s “agent” in a literal meaning, like a “secret agent” except it’s not really a secret, not in a sense of being an official member.

              • Of course, their name was “presidential guard” only after Kadyrov got “elected”. Before this, he was “the acting head of the republic” (answerable only to Colonel Putin, due to Putin’s “direct presidential rule” since the early 2000).

                In 1999 Kadyrov-1 defected to the FSB (and his sons with him – Ramzan is the only surviving one), while the Yamadayevs (along with Gudermes in a package) by their old rivals in GRU (GRU lost big time). And for example Gantamirov defected already in 1994, also to the FSB, whose name was FSK back then (“Counterintelligence”, not “Security”), and in 1999 he was taken from a Moscow prison (!) to run the “Chechen militsya” during the new invasion.

              • It looks like you have not seen any evidence if he is or he is not … I am always fascinated by the people for whom everything is clear and there are no secrets. I wonder what other statements you present as facts should really be qualified as “I think that…” or “In my mind” or “I want to believe”

                • And you are “I don’t believe, because no, and Ramzan is a self-made man, and not a made man” (in the mafia meaning). Go and read some books on Chechnya.

                  And here’s Ramzan just after he was selected by the FSB Colonel Putin (always colonel forever, like Colonel Ghaddafi) to be the next don of Chechnya after his daddy’s ass exploded (notice how Ramzan’s still wearing a tracking suit, even at the Kremlin where the gangsters dress sharp):

                  • Robert, I only pointed out that you do not know if Kadyrov is part of FSB or not. I did not say a word about his being a self-made man. I don’t think anyone has ever denied that Kadyrov was appointed by Putin to run Chechnya, but that still does not make him part of FSB. I was appointed to my first job by an ex Armoured Cavalry Major — this hardly qualifies me for a position in Her Majesty’s Armoured Cavalry forces, I am afraid.

  6. Russian social networking site speaks for dead soldiers

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-13480908

    A non-governmental charity, The Mother’s Right Foundation, has set up the unusual page. It says that the majority died from extreme bullying, crime, bad living conditions or the abnormal psychological climate in the army.

    Some were killed by fellow servicemen, shot at point-blank range or beaten to death.

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