Friday, December 01, 2006

Litvinenko: The plot thickens

Since we have established that the poison used to kill Alexander Litvinenko was Polonium -210, it has been clear that there was a direct connection with the Russian security services.

The Polonium has also created its own trail- leaving traces in the plane that it came to Britain on, and cross contamination in several other planes.

The investigation has already established that Alexander Litvinenko was murdered, that the poison came from a specific reactor in Russia and that the poison was brought to London on October 25th on a BA flight -around the time of the Arsenal-CSKA Moscow football match. Access to the poison is limited to people with specific security clearances in the Russian security services.

As the question of how, and even who killed Mr. Litvinenko has become clearer, the critical question still remains: Why was Mr. Litvinenko killed?

In attempting to answer this question, we keep taking more steps closer to the person and personality of President Vladimir Putin himself.

The murder, despite initial connections, does not seem to be as a result of any information concerning the murder of Anna Politkovskaya. It seems that at the time of his death, Alexander Litvinenko was only tangentially looking at that case. The allegations that he had previously made suggesting that the supposedly Chechen bomb attacks in Russia that provided the pretext to restart the Chechen war were in fact made by Russian security services themselves have been public for some time.

The only new allegation that Litvinenko was making, was that Putin was guilty of molesting children. Even were this true it would be highly unlikely to be believed, and certainly posed no threat to Mr. Putin, even if he found the allegations distasteful and annoying or worse.

The current story in the press is that dissident or rogue security agents may have been responsible, attempting to pressurize or discredit the Putin regime. Of course it may be that the pressure is personal: the message is to Mr. Putin himself, that he would not be safe in the West, were he to choose to come here after his term ends.

It would be fair to say that the number of people who wish to see the death of Vladimir Putin is now quite a long one already.

The conclusion is that the Russian Security Services did this, the only question is whether it was for Vladimir Putin or against him. Although few murders have been solved inside the Russian Federation, the British enquiry may well find enough evidence to request the extradition of specific suspects- then we may find some very interesting answers to all of this speculation.

Alexander Litvinenko became a British citizen only on November 1st 2006. He may have been murdered precisely because of this. It would be fitting if his murder was solved because he had become a British citizen, and the British authorities lived up to their responsibilities to their citizens, in a way that the Russian Federation has so dismally failed to do for its own citizens in recent years.


Anonymous said...

Do not forget our friend Mr Gaidar... Several hits made, all with different styles. Sounds deliberate to me... I wonder what's next... Khodorkovsky found dead in his cell in Siberia? Kasyanov killed in car accident? Saakashvili in plane crash? An air bubble for Chubais? This is more insane than the Soviet days. Le Carre and Forsyth may have a run for their money if it wasn't reality TV here...

Bishop Hill said...

Channel 4 news is reporting that an adult member of Litvinenko's family is contaminated with Po210.