Soviet Journalists Continue to Succumb
to Lead Poisoning
by Christopher A. Ferrara
December 19, 2011
There is so much breaking news these days on the conversion of Russia. That is, Russia's conversion from “the former Soviet Union” to the present-day dictatorship under Vladimir Putin.
Like any competent dictator, Putin makes sure that his most vocal critics are eliminated. Where anti-Kremlin journalists are concerned, the method of choice is the hit man. As Reuters notes, at least 32 journalists have been murdered in Russia since 1992, and most of these murders have gone unsolved.
Add another victim to the list. As Reuters reported on December 16, 2011, Gadzhimurat Kamalov, “the founder of a newspaper that investigated government corruption has been shot dead in Russia's North Caucasus region, in what an international watchdog called ‘a lethal blow to press freedom.'”
Kamalov was gunned down as he was leaving the offices of his newspaper Chernovik late at night. The hit man shot him eight times. According to Reuters, quoting the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, “journalists at Chernovik, known for reporting on corruption in the provincial administration, had been ‘routinely persecuted for their work.'” His killing, the Committee laments, was “a massive loss for independent journalism in the North Caucasus, Russia's most dangerous place for reporters...”
Thanks to this epidemic of lead poisoning among journalists critical of the Kremlin, Russia is now ranked “the ninth-worst country in the world for the treatment of journalists,” according to an “impunity index” that ranks countries on the basis of the number of journalists who are killed in unsolved crimes.
While his journalistic opponents eat lead, Putin is scoffing at the recent massive demonstration in Moscow to protest blatant election fraud during the just-concluded parliamentary elections in which Putin's United Russia Party barely polled a majority, even with vote fraud. A Washington Post story reports that Putin is attempting “to soften his authoritarian image, hinting at democratic concessions...” Putin did so during an absurd 41 ˝ hour telecast — all Putin, all the time — during which he answered softball questions about his plans for Russia.
During the Putin Telethon the dictator of “converted” Russia said he “might be willing to allow small political parties to register for elections and would be open to the surrender of some of the Kremlin's control over regional politics...” It's all up to him, you see. That's what a dictatorship is all about.
Why mince words? Putin is a thug in a custom-tailored suit. But this thug's rise to power is what some Catholics — those we call the false friends of Fatima — dare to characterize as a “miraculous” regime change brought about by the intervention of the Mother of God. With friends like these, Our Lady of Fatima needs no enemies.