Cheat-Seeking Missles

Friday, December 08, 2006

No Rusky Red Carpet For Scotland Yard

Promises, promises.

"Da, da, comrade, you will have our full cooperation in your investigation of Comrade Litvinenko's tragic death," the Russians assured Scotland Yard.

Full of bull, maybe, but not full of cooperation. The Times of London reports:
... the Russian Prosecutor-General has thrown four separate obstacles in its way. He has told the visiting detectives that they may request interviews but only observe them, and then only if the interviews are granted. He has ruled out extraditing any Russian citizen for trial in Britain. He has announced his own investigation into the alleged attempted murder of two of Mr Litvinenko’s associates — who, as Russian citizens, provide a pretext for giving the Russian inquiry priority over the British one. And he has twice postponed interviews with the man Scotland Yard most wants to question (Andrei Lugovoy).
My prediction: After trying to stonewall and discovering that Scotland Yard is nothing if not persistent, they will toss some FSB lackey under the wheels of justice and hope the whole thing goes away.

That's because Litvinenko's murder is probably an FSB affair that Putin new nothing about until he read about it in Pravda one chilly Moscow morning. But that doesn't mean Putin's got clean hands. Again, the London Times:
The rise of the FSB to the dominant position that its predecessor, the KGB, once enjoyed, fuels corruption, inhibits the economy and democracy, and has the potential to become a serious political embarrassment for Mr Putin. Yet it is largely a problem of his own making, as is the rise of the slavishly pro-Putin youth groups accused of harassing Britain’s Ambassador to Moscow for attending an opposition conference last summer. Mr Putin should remember that power corrupts, and centralised power corrupts the figure at the centre.
Fine, but Putin is in his heart a Communist, and centralized power is what makes Communists tick. He has no intention of unwinding any of his web of power, including the thuggishness of the FSB.

Related Tags: ,