The Kremlin and its fascination with poison

“Our leaders have always been interested in poison”. This aphorism referring to the endangered Soviet Union and it looks like it was taken from an Agatha Christie novel, not pronounced by any of the characters. This was the result where a partition was found. Special Missions (special operations), chilling and detailed autobiography Pavel Sudoplatov, Senior officer of the Soviet secret services during the Stalin era, published in 1994, a few years after the collapse of the USSR.

A strong claim made by someone who got his nickname in his own time. terminator The Georgian dictator is reportedly reinstated this week. Anatolian Chubaisfather of privatization 90 and the most senior Russian politician to flee since the beginning of the war war in ukraineHe was hospitalized in a European country. rare neurological disease. While his doctors do not rule out that he was poisoned, his facial paralysis and inability to walk stir up all speculation.

If confirmed, nothing strange would happen in the news. As the most concerned president to leave Putin for not participating in the competition, Chubáis fits like a glove on the profile of the target character to be eliminated in this old fashioned way, which looks more attractive in the eyes of the Kremlin. a execution by firearm even a accident, to give two examples. “Poisoning has greatly affected the Kremlin. reasonable refusal” assures El Periódico de Catalunya John SipherFormer CIA agent for 28 years and served in Moscow in the 1990s. Russian officials will deny through all channels “But his message[that the country does not forgive traitors]will be understood by the people he is addressing,” Sipher continues.

Christo Grozev, Winner of the European press award in 2019 as an investigative journalist on the Bellingcat website and author of information revealing the identity of the Russian agents who poisoned Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia, goes beyond believable deniability. In an email to this newspaper, in the case of poisoning of dissidents inside Russia, “the criminal investigation is entrusted to the FSB Institute of Criminology (Federal Security ServiceOne of the heirs of the KGB) in Moscow, the institution that actually oversees the poisoning program”. no traceEven if the operation doesn’t go as planned, as in the unsuccessful killing of anti-corruption blogger Alekséi Navalni with a poisonous agent from the Novichok group, “it creates terror and has huge disincentive effects among political and human rights activists”.

No historical innovation

In no case does the method constitute a historical innovation. as described by Agent SudoplatovIt was Vladimir Ilich Lenin, the first leader of the USSR who created the first laboratory in 1921, but years later the Soviet leaders did not decide to direct its use to the elimination of competitors. The years when Stalin was the head of the country, the program that was christened with names like Lab X throughout history, camera, lab 1 or Laboratory 12It was led by Grigori Marianovski, a biochemist of Jewish origin. Joseph Mengele and other Nazi scientists experimented on Gulag prisoners, supplied them, with food or medication, toxic substances such as wheel, do i treat mustard gas He was on a quest to find a tasteless poison that left no trace.

The list of famous people poisoned by Soviet and Russian espionage is long. at the construction site Special MissionsSudoplatov, Swedish diplomat Raoul WallenbergII. He was the victim of these experiments, which disappeared during the Soviet occupation of Hungary after World War II and whose fate remains one of the greatest unsolved mysteries of the modern age. “My guess is the Wallenberg that the Soviet services “tryed to recruit” unsuccessfully“He was killed by an injection of poison as a medical treatment,” the former agent writes. He claims his body was “cremated” as an autopsy would “reveal the precise nature of his death.”

Nowadays, Laboratory X there is not one specific locationa. “We’ve identified a few places like E.l Signal Science Institute in Moscow or Institute of Applied Acoustics Dubná,” Grozev explains, although the program was also developed at “military installations”. hand in hand With colleagues in the GRU, FSB or SVR”, the foreign intelligence service.

Despite a long tradition of poisoning dissidents in Russia and the USSR, there is no doubt Vladimir Putin this method is most often used indoors. “I don’t know why, but biographers have described in his book his strange admiration for the use of poison. secret agent stage In East Germany,” Grozev emphasizes.

Source: Informacion

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