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Anna Politkovskaya was a person without any skin at all
Written by   
, 06 2011

 The director of the film, 'The bitter taste of freedom', talks about her character

A film about Anna Politkovskaya, 'The Bitter taste of freedom', has conquered New York and come to Russia. Itwas directed by Marina Goldovskaya, who was personally acquainted with Politkovskaya and wanted to show the journalist not as the well-known human rights activist, but as a simple Russian woman. Darya Zlotnikova continues the theme.

Marina Goldovskaya filmed this movie for 30years. Shetalked with Politkovskaya at home in her kitchen, pickeding random shots from the journalist's travels and reading letters from Chechnya together withher.

At the premiere of the film during New York Documentary Film Week, Marina Goldovskaya said that Politkovskaya, who was considered an 'iron lady', was actually a gentle and vulnerable woman who very keenly felt people'spain.

“There are people with a sensitive skin, and there those who are thick-skinned, and then there are those without any skin,” Goldovskaya said. “She had no skin. Noneat all. Thisis what kind of person she was.”

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Written by   
, 07 2011

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
Written by   
, 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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In heaven there are a thousand blankpages
Written by   
, 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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True organizer of Politkovskayas
Written by " "   
, 23 2011

True organizer of Politkovskaya’s murder has been apprehended

He is a former colonel

ImageToday it came to our attention that retired police lieutenant colonel Dmitry Pavlyuchenkov has been detained in the murder investigation of Novaya Gazeta journalist Anna Politkovskaya. Pavlyuchenkov is the former chief of department 4of the Operational Search Directorate for the Interior Ministry in the city of Moscow.

According to sources in law enforcement, we know that he is to be charged with the October 7th, 2006, murder. According to the information available to Novaya Gazeta, Dmitry Pavlyuchenkov is suspected of accepting the contract for the murder of Anna Politkovskaya while he was still an active officer of a secret police unit. Inconnection with this, he formed a criminal group that assigned tasks among its members, organized illegal surveillance of the journalist, and equipped the assigned killer with a pistol and silencer.

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