Mother Russia Accused of Killing Their Own



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Friday, November 24, 2006 - 11:00am

Mother Russia Accused of Killing Their Own

In the last few years, the United States has had better relations with Russia, but it looks like the Soviets are up to their old tricks again.  Russian President Vladimir Putin has been accused by ex-spy Alexander Litvinenko of poisoning him and eventually killing him.  Litvinenko, who was only 43 years old, died yesterday of heart failure after being poisoned by radiation.  That is the third harsh critic of the Russian government to be killed in the last few months.  The others were a journalist and a central bank official.


Litvinenko was literally on his death bed when he accused Putin of orchestrating his killing.  Being minutes away from dying tends to bring out the truth in people if you ask me.  Putin and his government responded to the allegation by saying it was nonsense, but all signs point to the contrary. 


For three weeks, doctors could not determine what poison was causing Litvinenko to die.  However, they just discovered that he died from a radioactive substance in his body.  Radioactive material is only in the possession of governments and very few of them for that matter.  It is not something that the ordinary killer can get their hands on.


So Vladimir Putin's government had the motive and the means to kill Litvinenko.  This would be equivalent of George Bush ordering the murder of an ex-CIA agent.  Bush was willing to expose the identity of one of our own spies, but he has not (yet) resorted to kill them.


What does this all mean back in the United States?  Well, it probably means a renewed strain on the relationship between the U.S. and Russia.  How George Bush handles this could issue be very important.  He has ignored the other killings thus far.  If he dismisses it again, Putin and his government will consider it a green light to kill any critic they want, even if they are on foreign soil.  That obviously cannot happen. 


Bush needs to come out hard against his buddy Vladimir to avoid that appearance of condoning his actions.  I'm just not so sure he's smart enough to do so.


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