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, 21 2011
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Nord-Ost through the eyes of the Ukrainian hostages
, 19 2011

ImageIn anticipation of the anniversary of the hostage crisis in Moscow theatrical center, we are presenting you a broadcast from ‘Ukraina’ television:

‘Nord-Ost’, 8years on. Through the eyes of the Ukrainian hostages

Odessa resident Elena Burban was walking around Moscow, and on the spur of the moment bought 2tickets to the sensational musical ‘Nord-Ost’. Theevening of October 23rd was a special one. Itwas a small anniversary: ​​three months since their wedding. Itwas nothing but fate, and the girl and her husband ended up taken hostage by Chechen terrorists. Three days under siege, three days of uncertainty, three days that lasted for an eternity. Shereturned home to Odessa from Moscow awidow.

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In heaven there are a thousand blankpages
, 06 2011

Anna Politkovskaya’s loved ones remember her

“The language has become smaller by one, diminishing us. Nowyour words, like the feathers of dead birds, are in dictionaries. Inheaven there are a thousand blank pages, pages you never finished “ It is almost as if Joseph Brodsky were not eulogizing W.H.Auden, but Anya.

How many years have we been without Anna Politkovskaya 2, 3, 4, 5? Yes, five years already. Still, strange as it sounds, in the early years it seemed easier than it is now. Backthen, along with the pain, many still clenched their fists and were still courageous. Butthen there was the trial, and as the Politkovskaya family lawyers so vividly expressed it, the court took up the “torso” of the crime, but not the “head” that is, whomever it was who ordered her murdered, nor the “arms and legs” those who committed the crime were not in the dock, either. Thatwas then, while now on this day, the fifth anniversary of her murder; it is simply torture to talk about the investigation. There has certainly been progress, however one suspect is in jail, and the organizer of the murder has been established, but whoever ordered her murder, and paid for it, they are still being sought.

Perhaps it would be better to talk about this on another day, but not today.

Three years ago, Anna would have been 50. Onthat anniversary we categorically refused to discuss the investigation. Themotivation for our unwillingness was quite different back then. Wesaid: “There will be other days for that, there will trials, and the tragic date October 7th. Today we are not talking about murder, but Anya’s birthday, and on this date only those closest to her will talk about her they talk as if gathered around the table, remembering their favorite stories, tall tales, and funny episodes. Theytalk about a living Anya who simple turned invisible. Butshe is nearby.” (From ‘Novaya Gazeta’, #63, August 28th, 2008, “Anya is nearby. Afamily history in the stories of her mother, daughter, and sister.”)

Today is that tragic date: October 7th. Ithas been FIVE years since the day of her death, and today we will only talk to you about those close to her, and with them we will only talk about her.

Anna Politkovskaya's son, Ilya Politkovsky:

- Ilya, Iknow your mother’s colleagues from around the world have been tormenting you, and it is probably difficult for you even to remember how many times you have been asked to give interviews and commentary.

“It’s impossible to estimate or even imagine Sometimes Ispend the whole day giving interviews, non-stop. Thedemand increases especially around this date. Idon’t hide, Ianswer every question, and Ihave to, because otherwise discussion of the crime would have never gone anywhere, so for me it is an integral part of life.”

Have you dreamed of your mother during these fiveyears?

“I often dream about Mom, but Ican’t talk about it, and not because Idon’t want to, it’s just because my brain is so arranged that Idon’t remember my dreams. Sorry”

- What do you remember most about her?

“She said that because of the horrors she’d seen during her reporting, her outlook on life had changed dramatically. I’m also reexamining some of my values and worldviews. I’ve re-read a lot of what she’d written, and now Iagree that she did everything correctly, as a professional, and as a human being, but this wasn’t supposed to be my mom”

Mother should not have taken such risks?

“As a son Icould never agree that my mother should be in such a place, but let’s talk about something easier Youknow, Ioften still think about what a happy and warm a person my mom was, and how gently she would poke fun at my much too active interest in the opposite sex.”

- Yes, Iremember that, too. Oneday she was telling me a very funny story about your active interest and ‘victims’ when the phone rang. Doyou remember how we had to share a phone? Ourdesks were right up against each other, and that time Ipicked up the phone and your mother hears me say, Politkovskaya? Yes, hold on. What? What’s my name? Andwe both just started laughing.

“Yes, and she scolded me in much a funny way ‘How are you not ashamed? Paceyourself!’ At the same time Ifelt that she was absolutely certain that Iwould get through this stage, that it all just youthful energy. Ithink right now my mother is happy for me. I’ve found my love, and in my heart I’m sure that she would have liked this girl.”

Anna Politkovskaya’s mother, Raisa Alexandrovna Mazepa:

She refuses to see reporters. Shedoes not wish to talk to anyone about it. Sheis going through a roughtime.

There was one exception Raisa Alexandrovna agreed to meet with me back when Iwas preparing an article on Anya’s 50th jubilee. Wedrank ‘12 Herbs Tea’ and talked, perhaps, for around five hours straight. Certainly not everything made it into print. Today Raisa Alexandrovna had Ilya tell me that she has already said everything she was able back to back then and could add nothing, and that Icould do whatever Iwished with the recording of our conversation. Shewould never talk to another journalist.

So here once again Ihear her voice on my Dictaphone, surprisingly young and ringing, and Iremembered how she had less gray in her hair than Anya. WhenI said this out loud, in reply she immediately begins talking about her husband: “he did not have a single gray hair when he was buried. Henever had to go to the dentist until shortly before he died. Whenour girls were grown up, they always joked that they thought all men were as ideal as Dad. Hedidn’t drink or smoke. Heput his heart and soul into raising the children, and later the grandchildren.”

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Politkovskaya
, 07 2011

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Pity her children, who are left motherless.

Pity those who lost their friend.

Pity those whom she cannothelp.

Pity her loved ones, and those who lovedher.

Pity ‘Novaya Gazeta’, which lost an honest and courageous comrade.

Pity the now defenselesstruth.

Iam very sorry about Anya Politkovskaya.

Why did they kill her? Whydid they kill Yuri Schekochihin? Whydid they kill Igor Domnikov?

Those who ordered the deaths of these journalists, of what were they afraid?

They were not afraid of being unmasked.

They do not react to facts and proofs.

They ignore opinions and arguments.

They despise dissenters.

They spit on public opinion.

Why did they kill Anna Politkovskaya five years ago in the stairwell of her home on Lesnaya Street?

Because they heard herwords.

By her own efforts she defied the omnipotence of the existing government.

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Remember Politkovskaya thebrave
, 06 2011

ImageOn the anniversary of the death of my colleague Anna Politkovskaya, Isuddenly discovered that Ihad forgotten whether or not they ever caught her killers

I only remember the pompous, yet bungled goings on. There were the prosecutors, rushing to calm a hysterical West (“We found them! Wefound the evil doers and now we’ll put them away!”), as well as the lawyers juggling myriads of dissonant theories all covered with unpronounceable Chechen surnames. Ohyes, Iremember how, in the end, the jury decided that it was not the guilty who had been arrested, and how the public spat and headed home, grumbling: “Serves 'em right, they can’t do anything right! Evenwhen they really try they just can’t get it right, and that’s that!”

Once again investigators are dragging the very same suspects into court, and probably with the same half-grief as last time they will try to put them away. Itis possible that whoever ordered them to do this crime will be introduced to the public and they will turn out to be some shadowy Chechen criminal figures who, of course, for no reason whatsoever suddenly decided to kill a Moscow journalist. Veryfew people, of course, will buy it but Iam thinking about somethingelse.

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Subway 'mined' by is own security service
, 29 2011

ImageOfficers from the Moscow metropolitan security service (OSB) planted a fake bomb on the premises of the 7th precinct of the Moscow metro during an exercise, according to the website for the Moscow directorate of the Interior Ministry.

According to the report, the results of the exercises were not satisfactory, because “department staff and managers did not observe the proper sequence of actions during an emergency situation.” In connection with this, some members of the unit received disciplinary actions, and the chief of the unit is to receive a severe reprimand.

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Manifest of the Victims of Terrorism
, 22 2011

ImageTerrorism is a global phenomenon affecting all societies. Itis never justified. Terrorist organizations will find their own way to commit crimes. Theywill use various methods of action. Theywill act against different objectives. But, whatever the chosen course of action, terrorism will always be an unjustified and unfair, cruel, abominable crime as it seeks to undermine the most elemental human rights of people and communities.

But whatever the course that terrorists choose to manifest themselves, its victims are the same. Regardless of the country, the socio-political situation, the motivation or criteria by which its victims are selected, they are all created equal: innocent human beings, by no fault of their own, and owing to what some may call fatal destiny, become victims of assassination, kidnapping, torture, extortion, blackmail and threats. Theyare violently altered by terrorist action. Andvictims are the whole society, a society that feels the never-ending threat and the risk of terrorist action, and are ultimately altered by the reality of their possibility any day, anyhour.

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