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  • Putin, Bukovsky, and National Sovereignty

    Posted by David Foster on May 11th, 2016 (All posts by )

    Vladimir Bukovsky was prominent in the dissident movement within the old Soviet Union, and spent 12 years in prisons, labor camps, and psychiatric hospitals.  He has lived in Britain since the late 1970s, and has been a vocal opponent of Vladimir Putin, referring to Putin and his cricle as the heirs of Lavrenty Beria–Beria being Stalin’s notorious secret-police chief.  Bukovsky also expressed the opinion that the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko (in Britain, by radioactive polonium) was done at the behest of Russian authorities.  So you can be pretty sure that Bukovsky isn’t on Vladimir Putin’s list of 10 favorite people.

    Recently, Bukovsky has been charged with child pornography by British authorities.  Claire Berlinski believes that he was likely framed by the Russian regime.  (More from Claire here.)  It certainly seems quite possible that Putin’s intelligence agencies planted the evidence on Bukovsky’s computer, and I am happy that Claire is going to be further investigating this matter, which has received little attention from the legacy media.

    I tend to believe that Claire is right and Bukovsky is innocent, though I have no way of putting probabilities on this at the moment.  I am also impressed by the logic of  Diana West’s question:  “Is there a sentient person, naturally revolted by the thought of child pornography, even five or six images’ worth, going to believe for one minute that the British state, for decades having turned the blindest and hardest and most craven of eyes against the sexual despoilment and prostitution of generations of little British girls at risk at the hands of criminal Islamic “grooming” gangs, has suddenly developed some compelling interest in protecting the welfare of children, and thus turned its avenging sword on … Vladimir Bukovsky?”

    Above and beyond this specific case–and it is extremely important to ensure that Bukovsky gets fair treatment by the British judicial system, which seems unlikely without considerable sunlight on the matter–there an overwhelmingly critical general issue involved here: that of national sovereignty. There is little question that Litvinenko was murdered at the behest of people in the Russian government.  There is no question at all that the ayatollahs running the Iranian government called for the murder of Salman Rushdie, a citizen of Britain, because they didn’t like something he wrote.  There is no question at all that many imams throughout the Islamic world are calling for the murder of people in other countries, based on the opinions of those people, and there is no question at all that Iranian authorities are actively encouraging acts of violence against Israel.  And there is no question at all that German authorities are prosecuting a comedian for the ‘crime’ of insulting a foreign leader, at the behest of Turkish ruler Erdogan.

    John Kerry, America’s idiot secretary of state, recently talked to a group of college students about a borderless world, which he apparently either believes is inevitable or of which he actually approves.  But in the universe that actually exists, a borderless world is one in which foreign leaders and rabble-rousers can cause great harm to citizens of other nations, with the governments of those nations either unable or unwilling to protect them.

    G K Chesterton is credited with the saying “Don’t ever take a fence down until you know the reason why it was put up.”  (ascribed to Chesterton by John F Kennedy–the actual Chesterton quote can be found here)  But I doubt if Kerry has ever read Chesterton, and also doubt that he is capable of understanding him if he did read his works.

    Global interchange facilitates many good things, in trade, culture, and human connections:  it can also be a vector for bad things such as epidemics and cross-border murder and intimidation.  Cheerleading for a ‘borderless world’, without serious consideration of how to encourage the good and prevent the bad, is highly irresponsible.

    At a bare minimum, each civilized government should ensure that any planned legal proceedings against its one of its citizens which appears likely to have been instigated by a foreign power should be carefully vetted before proceeding.  Each civilized government should also react very strongly to any call by a foreign government for the murder of one of its citizens or residents–ranging from trade sanctions up to the funding of the overthrow of the regime in question and continuing to, in extreme cases, military action.

    Claire could use some additional contributions to assist with her work on the Bukovsky case; the link is here.

     

    21 Responses to “Putin, Bukovsky, and National Sovereignty”

    1. PenGun Says:

      “There is little question that Litvinenko was murdered at the behest of people in the Russian government.”

      There is no evidence at all. Just the entire western press is saying these things. The entire western press is a lapdog and does exactly what it’s told to do.

      Putin took Russia away from those who would have sold it down the river. Starting most notably with Yeltsin. This has made a lot of people very angry and the river of lies has flowed from these people ever since.

      There is a reason over 80% of Russians are behind him. He has given them back their pride.

    2. David Foster Says:

      It is not uncommon for demagogues to ‘give people back their pride’….for a while….

    3. Mike K Says:

      “There is no evidence at all. ”

      Yes, the Polonium just jumped out at him on the underground.

    4. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      Putin is former KGB. Wet work has been common since he became dictator. Planting evidence on a computer would be child’s play (so to speak) for those guys.

    5. TangoMan Says:

      Cheerleading for a ‘borderless world’, without serious consideration of how to encourage the good and prevent the bad, is highly irresponsible.

      I really try to understand the views of my opponents but I haven’t found anyone who can keep up a sustained defense for a borderless world.

      Citizens have an obligation towards each other, sometimes freely given (people choose to be police and choose to enlist) and sometimes imposed (welfare redistribution) so how does one sustain this essential fabric of life in society when anyone can show up in your country (or whatever we call this place once borders are gone) and partake of the benefits, the legacy, which was built here but not where they came from?

      A borderless world comes across like an open marriage being imposed on one spouse in a world where divorce doesn’t exist. The people who dream of a borderless world exist alongside those who reject that view. How does one go about getting a national divorce in a borderless world?

      If I have obligations towards my fellow citizens then I expressly reject the vision which allows anyone in the world to come here and impose their presence on me and demand that I meet my obligations towards them.

    6. John Gorentz Says:

      “There is no evidence at all. Just the entire western press is saying these things. The entire western press is a lapdog and does exactly what it’s told to do.”

      This is not true. You must not know what “evidence” means if you think there is no evidence that Litvinenko was murdered.

      However, there is no evidence that a) the entire Western press is saying these things, and b) that the western press is being told what to do in this matter. You don’t think that. You made that up. Any 50-cent blogger worth his keep would give the money back for being so careless.

      “There is a reason over 80% of Russians are behind him. He has given them back their pride.”

      There is no evidence that 80 percent of Russians are behind him. Putin doesn’t offer a free press to operate in Russia and doesn’t allow free elections, so we have no way of knowing whether that figure is correct. If what you say is true, Putin wouldn’t find it necessary to squelch the press and rig the elections.

      Also, there is no evidence that Putin has given Russians back their pride. You must hate Russians if you think they are proud of something so evil as the murders of Litvenenko, Nemtsov, Politkovskaya and others. If Putin loves Russia, he will denounce you for slandering the Russian people in this way.

    7. Joe Wooten Says:

      I wonder if little penny gets paid by the FSB for spouting shit like he just did.

    8. TM Lutas Says:

      PenGun – Re: Litivenko’s death, here is your evidence.
      14 page summary:
      https://www.litvinenkoinquiry.org/files/lit210116.pdf
      329 page full report:
      https://www.litvinenkoinquiry.org/files/Litvinenko-Inquiry-Report-web-version.pdf

      You certainly are free to disagree with the evidence. To say that there *is* no evidence is spectacularly incorrect. It took me less than 2 minutes to discover this. Do you really care so little for the truth that you didn’t even check?

    9. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      I wonder if little penny gets paid by the FSB for spouting shit like he just did.

      I have long thought so. Grey Bear and Grey Eagle are two more commenters who I am almost sure are Russian Disinformation pros.

    10. PenGun Says:

      “that the western press is being told what to do in this matter. You don’t think that.”

      I’ve thought that for several years now. It’s not as simple as told what to do though. News these days is not reported by reporters. They are a dying breed and most news is taken from the stream of crap on the internet. These makes all the news the same, and really, it’s pretty simple to spin whatever you want to compliant outlets, most of the western media.

      TM, two things. Any government will kill it’s rouge spies. There is no evidence Putin cared at all about any of Litivenko’s actions although he is part of the crowd that was part of selling off Russia to anyone who wanted a piece. This is the west’s story to demonize those who stopped that rot. This time a new British inquiry is the vehicle to that end.

    11. Jonathan Says:

      Putin took Russia away from those who would have sold it down the river.

      Putin took Russia away from his amateur competitors in crime, never mind Russian democrats. He is reputed to be one of the world’s wealthiest men. Cronies of his, such as his judo partner, have become billionaires. How do you think they got that way?

    12. David Foster Says:

      I also posted this at Ricochet, where an interesting discussion thread is developing

      https://ricochet.com/putin-bukovsky-and-national-sovereignty/

    13. PenGun Says:

      “He is reputed to be one of the world’s wealthiest men. Cronies of his, such as his judo partner, have become billionaires. How do you think they got that way?”

      I dunno. There are lots of stories, little evidence. Arkady Rotenberg’s company is building the bridge to Crimea which is almost done. The power is already hooked up.

    14. Jonathan Says:

      It’s amusing to compare the topics about which you are skeptical with those where you are credulous.

    15. PenGun Says:

      “It’s amusing to compare the topics about which you are skeptical with those where you are credulous.”

      I hope so. It’s one of the reasons I post here. To give you a different, and quite frankly, more real view of current events. You have lots of people who agree with your viewpoint, very few agree with mine, hi ho.

    16. PenGun Says:

      As well, all the big boys play “no rules hard ball”, there is nothing but monsters at the top of any state. I just like Putin’s style.

    17. Sgt. Mom Says:

      It is interesting, that the authorities in Britain snapped to and went snorkling for child pr*n with such alacrity, after pretty much ignoring the Rotherham and other mass-exploitation of teen girls until public attention pretty much forced them into it.

      And of course Penny approves of Putin’s style.

    18. Will Says:

      Frau Honecker cackles her approval from the pit!

      Bukosvky gets the Bell treatment or vice versa. Inconvenient news disappearing is becoming a norm here as well. What could the connections be?

      http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/2016/05/at-last-a-small-victory-in-the-rehabilitation-of-george-bell.html

    19. David Foster Says:

      More from Claire:

      The KGB never forgets and never forgives

    20. Mike K Says:

      “very few agree with mine, hi ho.”

      There are blogs that do and you would no doubt feel welcome there. I used to read and post at a couple of left wing blogs but they got very angry that I did not agree with them and banned me. Even before that, they posted very nasty comments about me and my family.

      The left is addicted to feelings of superiority and nasty comments about those they don’t agree with.

    21. Mike K Says:

      David, I read that piece and am very impressed with her.

      “Putin has the old dream of Russia, and then the Soviet Union. It just confirmed their presence in the Middle East, in the Mediterranean.”

      That is what I was trying to say in my post about Syria. I guess I didn’t say it well. Putin doesn’t care about Assad. He wants Aleppo. He wants the Mediterranean port.

      Ricochet gave me a really nasty time about evolution when I was a member. It is a bit ironic as the flood of new DNA information is growing quickly.

      It is tragic that evolution has gotten caught up in politics.