Skip to comments.A vanity from a former Hostage
Posted on 10/22/2004 10:23:46 PM PDT by svni
I would like to summon up my courage and declare that, of all the participants in this discussion, only I am personally acquainted with Anna Politkovskaya and, perhaps, the reality of Russia.
And so, I feel that I have the right to say the following:
1. It is an abominable idea, that Anna was not poisoned, but was only trying to enhance her image. She has already made her name and displayed her authority, not only in the former Soviet Union, but in other countries as well. None of you show her any sympathy, though no one has the right to take her life outside of the law, no matter how bad she may be.
2. Have any of you, as Anna did, sat in a hole without food or water, as a hostage of the federals in Chechnya, have any of you seen murdered children and the faces of their parents, so that you can accuse her of deceipt or hypocrisy for the sake of popularity? Who of you has left all business behind in the USA, in order to stand in the middle of a city square under the guns of spetsnaz and terrorists, awaiting the decision by some headquarters on whether you could buy some juice with your own money to carry into the Moscow theater, to help us, the hostages there?
3. Why has the elementary thought not occurred to any of you, that a person can love their country, their city, their people, and want that life in their country should be as comfortable as in the USA?
4. Why have so many of you taken it upon yourselves to play God and decide which people should live, and which should not?
My friend very accurately describs terrorism and the fight against it in Russia. I can devise nothing better than her words here:
"Terrorists, including those who seized the school in Beslan, they are brain-dead degenerates and curs. Do not forgive them, insult them, or pay them attention. Don't give them anything. If there is a realistic chance of destroying them without risking, or minimally risking, the lives of hostages, this chance should be taken, quickly, decisively, and without doubts. For the sake of saving people, I negotiated with them and continued to the last opportunity, in the hope of saving people. I could care less how the surrounding world related to my activities, or what were the opinions of dense, impatient cowards, corrupt officials, and the like. Officials change rapidly and forever; people only live once, and they die forever. If someone were to take offense that I figuratively splash excrement on the honor of his uniform, I would exchange him without pity for women and children, no matter who he was. If this person cannot understand the value of human life, let him see for himself how it feels.
"That terrorists are the last of the degenerates does not mean that anti-terrorists have spotless hands which carry happiness and joy into every home. If we find among the anti-terrorists mediocrity, non-entities whose honor is for sale, liars, boasters, and heartless martinets - who defend only the honor of their uniform and the uniform of their commanders, then the result will be even worse acts by the terrorists; actually these two teams will play for a single goal - the death of the hostages.
"I am for effective anti-terror.
"If I don't support anti-terrorists, it does not mean that I support terrorists. It means that the anti-terrorists have not managed their tasks and have only increased the consequences of the terror act, and in so doing became accomplices of the terrorists.
"Anti-terrorists can cover up the details of situations and limit publicity about the proceedings as long as this is required in the interests of saving people. But every attempt to lie, distort the essence of the proceedings or what occurred, to shift blame for their errors onto others - this is a criminal offense which cannot be excused or expiated by any means; in this case the anti-terrorists are the terrorists' accomplices and should be punished together with them.
"Anti-terrorists bear full and unconditional responsibility for their actions. Anti-terror is not a joke, it's not a picnic on the curb, it's not checking IDs or ripping off rich people, it's not making up a budget or other official matters pleasant to the body and soul. Any attempt to shirk responsibility or let another pay the price aids the terrorists and anti-terrorists above all should be punished in the harshest manner, without difference as to man, job title, his merits, or anything else.
"The activities of anti-terrorists should not directed towards solving hostage crises, dealing with the after-effects of explosions and other diversions, but centered on making sure none of this ever happens. Any terror act, explosion, or diversion is an indication of poor work by the anti-terrorists. The aim of terror acts, explosions, and diversions are to show fully the unsatisfactory work of the anti-terrorists, and demands an immediate investigation and improvement of their work; high-ranking jobs and loud-sounding names are not for alleviating circumstances, but aggravating them.
"If a terror act happens somewhere anyhow, an investigation of its reasons and the activities of the anti-terrorists should be maximally open and uncompromising. Openness provides not just a chance of eliminating the possible causes of acts of terror, but provides the majority of people with information on how to conduct themselves in critical situations, whom they may trust, and whom they may not. Even a small amount of knowledge of what to do under difficult situations may help to save the lives of a majority of people.
"Everyone needs to remember that the heroism of some people is always the result of the consequences of inactivity, carelessness, corruption, or incompentence of others. If somewhere the need for heroism arises, it means that there were significant, unsurmountable problems that could only be overcome through the sacrifice of their own lives. Where the is heroism, you will find the lowest and most base of people; if it was all a result of their actions or inactions, thant these need to be found and treated as accomplices of the terrorists. If this is not done today, then it will all repeat again tomorrow, and most likely, with even worse consequences.
"The struggle against terror should not be carried out using the terrorists' methods, because this generates an endless cycle of bloody wars without rules or a reasonable exit. The principal of collective responsibility is the the basis of terror, no matter under what slogans or in what form it is carried out. No government, religious, or ideologic offices, programs, slogans, or pressing needs can justify extra-judicial violence, cruelty, or secret courts.
"I have purposely not named any of the government services, officials, and the like, because I do not believe that the presciptions for combating terrorist evil are any different in various corners of the world. But at this time I live in the Russian Federation, a government that has been in a state of war for many years already.
"Anti-terrorists (secret services) came to power in the Russian Federation five years ago with slogans of a struggle with terror and providing safety to the citizenry. Gigantic resources are concentrated in the hands of the anti-terrorists. Through the efforts of the military (the army are not anti-terrorists) the terrorists were driven off into the mountains, and deprived of their main bases, and their communications were seriously disrupted. The servicemen did practically everything that was in their power. Society gave anti-terrorists a huge amount of trust in advance, thanks to these servicemen. Now anti-terrorists comprise 70% of those who make decisions in the government, including the very head of the regime. Fighting terror is supposedly the main specialty of these anti-terrorists, but the result of their five years at the helm has been an intensified wave of terror acts throughout Russia. Now this wave has washed over Moscow and the North Caucasus, but this in no way means that other parts of Russia are safe.
"Thus, it has been proven through practice - a terrible, bloody, and inhumane practice - that these new Soviet anti-terrorists are ineffective. Since the army has not changed during this time, the blame is soley the anti-terrorists'. The old punitive and repressive structures have been shown to be helpless against the real challenges of our time, and this is why they we cast them off during perestroika. We need to replace all these monsters for more something more effective that they are now. It does not matter that we are in mid-stream, or that it's a bad time for it - it's already too late to wait for a better opportunity. The enemy is at the gates, and he doesn't care who is next."
Svetlana Gubareva, former hostage.
May I suggest something, since you are new here and have some grievances with older members.
Copy all the members names you have a problem with or you dont think understand the situation and do a "ping" of them. I dont know enough about Russia, Anna or Chechnya to help you out.
So, please express our sympathies. Just remember that there are always a few bad apples, and those who are trying to make jokes, in every group. FR is usually the most civil political message forum on the planet.
Why has the elementary thought not occurred to any of you, that a person can love their country, their city, their people, and want that life in their country should be as comfortable as in the USA?
And I think everyone here agree's that we all want life in every country to be as comfortable as is it in the USA. It would solve so many problems that we couldn't count them.
I think her gist is more anti-Putin than anything.
probably. There are a lot of problems with Putin. But in the long run I think Russia needs a Putin at this time as a transition into a real stable democracy.
and my last line in that post is really something I feel. If we can export freedom, civil and economic freedom, the world will become more prosperous. That will bring more peace than ever before. Sure, sooner or later countries that comfortable turn into Europe or US but thats their choice.
That is so cool! I had no idea I'd been promoted!
I'm sorry, I don't understand the graphic :(
Who is Anna:
Disquiet On The Chechen Front
By YURI ZARAKHOVICH | Moscow
Posted Sunday, April 20, 2003; 14.23 BST
Anna Politkovskaya, a correspondent for the Moscow biweekly Novaya Gazeta, was in Los Angeles last October, picking out her dress for a media awards ceremony, when some staggering news came from Moscow: Chechen terrorists were holding 850 hostages in a theater. The Russian authorities tried to send in negotiators, but the Chechens refused to see most of them. They asked for Politkovskaya.
And so Politkovskaya rushed back to cover yet another episode of one of the world's nastiest and longest wars, which this time had shifted to Moscow. The terrorists, she says, "wanted someone who would accurately report things as they were. My work in Chechnya makes people there feel that I don't lie. But there wasn't much I could do for the hostages anyway." She carried water and fruit juice to them, and reported their dejection and feelings of doom to the world. Two days later, Russian special forces stormed and gassed the theater, killing 41 terrorists and 129 hostages.
Politkovskaya, 44, made her name by writing detailed, accurate and vivid reports on the plight of the civilian population in Chechnya, caught in the horrors of war since 1994. She tells stories of people who are taken from their homes at night and never come back; about extrajudicial executions; about the hungry refugees in cold and damp camps. "It was the refugee problem that started it," she now recalls. When the second Chechen war began in 1999, tens of thousands of refugees began flooding the makeshift relief camps. "It was horrible to stand among the refugees in the field in October 1999, and see cruise missiles flying over your head," she recalls.
When those missiles hit a market in Grozny, it was only prompt coverage by journalists like Politkovskaya that forced the Russian commanders to let ambulances in and refugees out. "Our work is a lever to help people as much as we can," she believes. But it also causes trouble. In February 2000, the FSB (the former KGB) arrested Politkovskaya in the Vedeno district of Chechnya. They kept her in a pit for three days without food or water. "It was important not to let them kill me on the first day," she says. A year later, a Russian officer whose war crimes Politkovskaya had exposed threatened to kill her. Novaya Gazeta had to hide her in Austria for a while. The officer is now awaiting trial on charges of war crimes committed in Chechnya that Politkovskaya was the first to report. "But I don't feel victorious," she says. "I only feel that we're all involved in a great tragedy."
Her editors have had to stand up to pressure from the Kremlin, which is often infuriated by her reporting. Novaya Gazeta balances on the brink of forcible closure. "Well, it goes with the job," she shrugs. Politkovskaya has long since learned to keep her anxieties in check. As she arranges yet another trip to Chechnya, she may now be too famous to be targeted by the FSB. But she really doesn't think about such things. "If you don't have the strength to control your emotions, you're of no help to the people who are in such shock and pain. You only add to their burden," she says.
Putin is probably Russia's best hope in these perilous times, but I found this article from Novaya Gazeta to be interesting. It seems to fit Ms. Gubareva's thesis:
Two Years ago, October 23rd, Terrorists seized Nord-Ost
A heavy rain, still hinting of hope, was falling during those days in 2002. Now, two years later, there is an unbroken frost on the government ground.
There was nothing to provide warmth. Since the regime behaved with reckless abandon two years ago, Nord-Ost has degenerated into a politically expedient action to cover for the guilty parties, and, naturally, to hush up the entire affair. All the victims of the theater tragedy, the officials assure us, died due to their own numerous inherant illnesses, aggravated by dehydration and stress, which were complicated just a bit by the application of an 'unidentified chemical substance'. But why, after two years, is it still impossible to identify THIS 'unidentifed' thing? Not a peep about this. 'It is not possible', and that is all, period.
Emanating from this is the main reason for the arrival of a harsh political winter. Who beat against the strong bars of the official investigation of Nord-Ost? No one but the loved ones and friends of the deceased. Only they have attempted to find out the truth about the death of their nearest and dearest children, wives, brothers, and husbands. The overwhelming majority in this country were silent on this score - they heeded the opinion of the authorities; it has been said that 'they' are making money off of the blood of their relatives, that the victims are just mercenary and mercantile.
This was monstrous: the relatives of the deceased fell into serious depression, they were converted into society's outcasts, they were dying. But these tears were unseen by society.
Yet another diagnosis from the two year anniversary of Nord-Ost. The hero-brigade of investigators, who were looking into the tragedy of the theater seizure and hostage deaths, are nowhere to be found. Not a single hero who was ready to be thrown onto the burning pyre for the truth. One must count as heroic those who 'left' the investigatory group, who could not manage the political pressure. In truth, one can say that 'those who left of their own free will' are a majority of the group.
But, obviously, not a single one opened his mouth.
Adoption of the government's thesis by the majority of society, that the money-grubbing Nord-Ost victims - this was the majority's sentence on itself. If the government machinery found it necessary to pay the victims' multi-million dollar lawsuits, one could be sure that the government would have made sure that the next terror act would not end the same. You can be sure of this.
History, we know, is not subjective case, and that is why we are there now, after Beslan. Nord-Ost led straight to it. Two years from Nord-Ost to Beslan passed by while the majority continued to snooze in their homes or dance in the discotheques.
The truth about Nord-Ost and the suffering of its victims did not bother them, and this was a fundamental moment. The regime understood that, once again, they had managed to deflect its own people. Then Beslan rode in on the next wave.
The first to call me on the morning of September 1st was Dima Milovidov, whose eternally 14 year-old daughter Nina had decided to see 'the first Russian musical' on October 23rd, 2002, and never returned home. "Anya, you've got to get some oxygen masks and send them THERE. Do you agree?" said Dima on behalf of the parents who lost children at Nord-Ost, who knew better than anyone in the country what no one else wanted to know.
Present result: the goods in greatest demand in Russia during the month of October - church candles. The most popular card - funeral, commemorating Beslan's 40 days of mourning, and Nord-Ost's two-year anniversary. In between, 24 October, two months after two airplanes were blown up in the sky. In addition, it is the five-year anniverary of the rocket attack on the Grozny marketplace.
Please forgive the tautology of 'anti-terror terror', but tautology is what it is, and it is the essence of our lives: we are simply immolating ourselves in fires of 'terroristic' and 'anti-terroristic' Molotov cocktails, when one quality overflows into the next, and terror and anti-terror are pebbles of a single kaleidoscope, between whose millstones were find ourselves. (???"...i terror i antiterror - kamushki odnogo kaleydoskopa, mezhdu zhernovami kotorogo - my." ???)
But we did it once, we can disentangle ourselves again. Naturally, I do not want a revolution - I cannot wish this on my nation or on myself. Revolutions do not turn out very well here. But it is also impossible to agree to a political winter which would grip Russia for several decades. I still want to live some more. I would like for my children to live in freedom, and that my grandchildren would be born free.
Therefore, I wish for an early thaw, but only we can to raise the degrees from minus to plus, no one else. To await a thaw from the Kremlin now, as we did during Gorbachev, is stupid and unrealistic. What do we have to demand, two years after Nord-Ost, which led to Beslan? The breaking up of the parliament, excuse me now for the historical tautology. Parliamentary elections which are truly free. The formation of a parliament free from Kremlin influence. The cessation of that acursed war in the North Caucasus, which causes terror, this will require the heroic effort of will by everyone who wants to stop it. The will of the majority.
Otherwise, there will be no change. By the way, the West will not help us - they are limply reacting to 'Putin's anti-terror prescription'. They say we are alright - we have vodka, caviar, gas, oil, bears, and people of a special nature. The exotic Russian market is back in its usual place. Other than this, Europe and the world have no need for us and our one-seventh of the earth.
That answers my questions. Thanks.
Y. Budanov's Clemency Application is Withdrawn
The clemency application by the former colonel, tank regiment commander Yuriy Budanov, was withdrawn. Budanov for the present remains serving out his sentence in the Ul'yanovsk district prison.
According to NTV television, the decision was made by the district prosecutor's office. Withdrawal of the request was based on the fact that it was incorrectly made, in part because Y. Budanov has still not served half his sentence of incarceration, and because he has yet to completely pay compensation to the victims.
Now the clemency request depends on a decision by Vladimir Shamanov, governor of the Ul'yanovsk district.
Earlier several of the mass media reported that the clemency request was personnally withdrawn by Yuri Budanov.
Recall that former tank regiment commander Y. Budanov was sentenced to ten years for the murder of a 17 year old Chechnyan girl on July 25th, 2003, by the North Caucasus area military court. According to Budanov, the girl was a sniper for the (Chechnyan) fighters. On September 16th, however, the Ul'yanovsk district clemency commission was satisfied with Yuri Budanov's clemency application, and in accordance with the decision of the commission, 40 year old Y. Budanov was freed not just from serving the main sentence, but from others as well. That is, he was to have his rank and military decorations restored.
Budanov's clemency application was signed by Ul'yanovsk district governor Vladimir Shamanov and only needed the signature of Russian president Vladimir Putin to become effective.
We note that information about the possible pardon of Y. Budanov summoned a stormy reaction from the people. Though opinion was divided, a greater number were against the removal of the former colonel's punishment. Most unhappy were those in Chechnya, homeland of the murdered girl. At a meeting today in Grozny a few thousand people assembled to protest against the pardon of Y. Budanov.
According to radio station "Ehkho Moskvy", Chechnyan president Alu Alkhanov received with satisfaction the news that Yuriy Budanov had withdrawn his clemency request.
Thank you for your alert to an important post.
Since Oct 21, 2004
You might want to consider the word "troll". Vanities such as this one are not encouraged here.
Was your hero not the person who said these things, from the post above?
" And war came to Bush at just the right time."
You're in the wrong place.
svni has something to say. (pulled your names off of a thread that was referenced)