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“Conversion of Russia” Update:

Why Putin Took Over Russia’s Mass Media

by Christopher A. Ferrara

While the Fatima revisionist dupes proclaim that Russia has been “converting” since the “consecration” of 1984, the rest of us — psst! over here! — can go on discussing the real world.

In the real world, of course, Vladimir Putin has seized control of Russia’s mass media as part of his campaign to shore up his authoritarian rule of Russia, which we are told (and which the dupes of Fatima revisionism believe) is a “democracy”.

Now there emerges evidence of one particularly powerful motive for Putin’s systematic seizure of all of Russia’s national television networks. On March 10, 2002 UPI reported that “customs officials in Russia's second-largest city of St. Petersburg on Sunday seized 100 copies of a videotape alleging that the Federal Security Service (formerly the KGB) masterminded the 1999 bombings of residential areas in Russian cities that killed several hundred civilians.”

Yuly Rybakov, a “liberal” member of Russia’s communist-dominated parliament, the Duma, was bringing the tapes into Russia when customs officers seized them. He was eventually allowed to take the boxes of tapes with him, along with a receipt stating they would be placed in storage.

The tape was produced by Boris Berezovsky, who once owned the independent television outlet NTV but is now an exile in London after being placed on Russia’s most wanted list — wanted for “money laundering”. Wow! Money laundering in Russia? Well, no wonder Berezovsky is on Putin’s Most Wanted List.

According to UPI “Last month, Berezovsky announced he would provide documented evidence of the Federal Security Service’s involvement in the 1999 bombings that had until then been blamed on a group of militants from the North Caucasian provinces.”

But — what a coincidence! — just as Berezovsky was about to reveal the tape, the Russian Prosecutor General’s office “announced it was collecting evidence that could link Berezovsky with the killing of Russian Police Gen. Gennady Shpigun, a top-level Interior Ministry official who was first abducted and then killed by his captors in Chechnya early in 1999.” The Russians know as well as anybody that the best defense is a good offense.

But there is more evidence than Berezovsky’s video tape. As UPI notes, the tape only reflects the reporting of French journalists that in the central Russian city of Ryazan “on Sept. 23, 1999, vigilant residents prevented a bombing of an apartment building after noticing unattended bags filled with a substance that looked like sugar. Hexogen, an explosive device resembling sugar, was used two weeks earlier to bomb out three apartment buildings in Moscow and southern Russia killing over 200 residents and leveling the buildings to the ground.”

When the local residents told “Ryazan’s police and security services about their discovery, officials from a local FSB (KGB) subdivision said that a terrorist act had been prevented.” But then, two days later, “security officials” in Moscow, contradicting what the local FSB office had said, stated “that the incident in Ryazan had occurred during a scheduled training session that aimed to check the vigilance of local police and security bodies.”

Ah, so the bomb was planted by the Russian authorities themselves — but only to see if the local police were paying attention. Looks like the FSB in Ryazan and the Moscow FSB didn’t coordinate their cover stories too well.

Anyway, according to UPI, “NTV television network reported Sunday that none of the leading networks was interested in airing the tape on television, suggesting it could end up in video parlors.” None of the national TV networks in Russia was interested in a sensational video presenting evidence that the FSB/KGB was behind the bombing of apartment buildings full of innocent people?

Oh, I forgot. All the national TV networks are now controlled by — what a coincidence! — Vladimir (“the practicing Christian”) Putin, who is himself — what a coincidence! — a “former” KGB spy.

Marvelous thing, this conversion of Russia over the past 18 years, isn’t it? Why, it’s a MIR-acle!