THE PREMIER-HEIR TO THE THRONE
I knew that there was a book by Korzhakov called “Boris Yeltsin: from dusk till dawn”, but I have not read it until lately. Only recently I fell upon it, living in a secret apartment, where I was hiding from repressions. The cover and the pictures first shocked me. The cover shows a probably sunbathing Yeltsin with the angry face of a criminal. And the pictures are so revealing that they could serve as evidence against Yeltsin and his people in a trial over them. Meaty, angry, drunken, baggy, looking like tramps and thugs, Yeltsin and the members of his government are odious. Visibly supposing to write an apology of himself, Korzhakov has in fact made an exposing book. Among others exposing himself, a dull-witted, unpleasant, simple half-police, half-FSB officer, and a man of violence, understanding only violence. Korzhakov is in such rapture when he describes the bloody events of October 1993, how glad he is at the proposition of a certain 1st rank captain Zakharov to shoot down the White House from tanks! As for Yeltsin he just appears like a boor, the regular of some foul cheburek-house. These are the kind of people who were governing us in 1991-1999. There is picture that is particularly impressive. There are three persons on it: a visibly frozen Yeltsin in a coat with hands under his armpits and wearing an ugly, shit-colored huge beret pushed on his front. He sits at a table with the rests of loathsome appetizers on it. Beside him sits Chernomirdin in a leather cap, with a beer and on the other side an anonymous alcoholic hiding his face with his hand. The leaders of Russia!
Maybe it was on such a drunken council that Boris Nikolaevich has decided to leave the country to Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin. On august 9th 1999 Putin was appointed first vice-premier of the RF government and later, after the resignation of Sergey Stepashkin’s government, he was appointed prime minister. On August 16th Putin was confirmed by the State Duma in his post of chairman of the Russia Federation’s government. It was far from a unanimous decision. 233 votes were given “for”, 84 – “against” and 17 deputies “abstained”. It is useful to remember who voted how, not to reproach the deputies and political parties, but in order to define the historical experience of mistakes. From the Yabloko fraction 18 deputies, including Gregory Alexeevich Yavlinski have voted for the confirmation, 8 Yabloko members have voted against. 52 CPRF deputies (including A. Lukyanov and A. Makashov) have voted against. Gennady Zuyganov did not vote. 32 deputies from the CPRF fraction presided by the State Duma speaker Gennady Seleznev have unfortunately voted for Putin. A part of the deputies of the leftist Popular Power fraction have voted against as well. The other parties have voted almost unanimously for Putin’s confirmation as prime minister.
It is interesting that in real fact Yeltsin had called Putin his successor on the presidential post back in August 9th and he has resigned only on December 31st. Here is what this monstrous man, Boris Yeltsin, has said in his television speech on august 9th 1999: “Now I decided to name the person who in my opinion is capable of consolidating the society and bearing on the largest political forces, gurantee the progress of reforms in Russia. He will be able to rally around him those who have the mission of renewing the great Russia in the new, XXI century. It is the secretary of the Security Council, FSB director – Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin… I have faith in him. But I want everybody who will come to the voting polls and make his choice in July to have faith in him as well. I think he has enough time for proving himself. ”
On the same day, August 9th, in a TV interview Putin said that he accepts Yeltsin’s proposition and will run as president. So when they voted on August 16th, a week later, the State Duma deputies already knew that they were confirming a person named Putin, with the biography of V. Putin on the president’s functions. And still have not blocked him. It is interesting how many of those 233 who have voted for him realize today that they have committed a mistake bordering on crime?
The mass media, at that time still not as subordinated to the Kremlin as today tried to warn society, inform it about the supposed new boss of the Kremlin. In the previous chapter we have already talked about the information that has appeared in the newspapers Versia, Stringer and others. I want to remind that the Versia newspaper, issue 31 1999 has published an article called “Reference about V. V. Putin”, in which he was quite negatively characterized. Let us return here to the scandal with the SPAG Company. After Putin became primer minister, i.e. after August 16th 1999, Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND) has verified the SPAG Company. The company was created in 1992, when V. Putin has visited Frankfurt-on-the-Maine at the head of a delegation from Saint Petersburg’s city hall. There Putin and another delegation member Vladimir Smirnov convinced a group of Frankfurt investors to create the German company SPAG (Saint Petersburg’s real estate etc.) The company started to invest in Saint Petersburg’s real estate through branch Russian-German companies. At the same time four functionaries of Saint Petersburg’s city hall, among them Putin have entered SPAG’s “supervisory board” (as shown by the documents of Germany’s commercial registration chamber). The company was headed by the lawyer Rudolf Ritter. Saint Petersburg’s joint-stock company Znamenskaya, whose general director was A. Smirnov, became SPAG’s filial. Saint Petersburg’s city hall received two hundred SPAG actions transferred by Putin to A. Smirnov to manage. And in 1999 the BND has accused R. Ritter of laundering money for Russian criminal organizations as well as for Columbian drug dealers – The Kali cocaine cartel. In May 2000 Ritter was arrested in Liechtenstein and in summer 2001 he was charged with the mentioned accusations. Supposedly Putin formally remained SPAG’s adviser until March 2000. Western newspapers have written in detail about Putin and the SPAG Company. I will refer to the French Le Monde from June 25th 2000, the Italian La Republica from June 13th 2001, and the Newsweek from September 3rd 2001. In the Russian Kommersant information about SPAG appeared on May 16th 2003. By the way Newsweek from September 3rd 2001 affirmed that V. Kumarin-Barsukov, a criminal authority famous in Saint Petersburg was a direction member of the joint stock company Znamenskaya. The journalist Jurgen Roth from the Berliner Zeitung has received materials about SPAG. In 2003 he published the book “Gangsters from the East”. In an interview to the newspaper Sobesednik (2003, issue 33) Jurgen Roth affirmed that he has evidence of Putin’s ties with Russian organized crime – through his “adviser” Smirnov.
Stringer wrote about Putin’s ties with the criminal world in July 2001, describing the so-called “criminal organization of Tambov” and mentioning the names of Vladimir Kumarin, Ilia Trauber and others. Supposedly it is through Trauber that Putin joined Pavel Borodin’s team – who then was the RF president’s manager. To their honor, even during the first year of Putin’s presidential term the journalists were not afraid to publish compromising materials about him. The Limonka newspaper was not afraid of the power then or today, this is why we were publishing risky materials about Putin in 1999 and in 2000. I will not cite Limonka; people will say that I cite myself as evidence. I will only talk about the article “Shoulder to shoulder” (Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 2002, March 13th), where the NG in its turn refers to publications in Perm’s newspapers Vechernyaya Perm and Rossiiskaya Gazeta and publishes photos where Putin is seen next to a certain Vladimir Plotnikov, a Perm businessman and the vice-president of Russia’s Judo Federation, known as “the Carpenter” and “the Director” in the region’s criminal world.
One could possibly brush aside these facts and find a certain explanation to every scandalous bloc of information about the President’s ties and actions. But there is so much of these ties and actions that a rational person even he does not want to, must believe in some evil aura of suspicious actions that surrounds V. V. Putin. Of course he is the president now, people pay more attention to him. But still. Even if only half of what he is suspected of is true, then we have a person whose place is not at the head of a State.
Yeltsin’s choice of a successor looks all the more incomprehensible if we remember that in August 1999 began the invasion of Dagestan by two thousand Chechen fighters headed by Basayev. The invasion was a complete surprise for the RF leaders. Because the Federal Security Service headed by Putin has slept over the invasion. And that person that has failed on the post of FSB director is appointed a premier and successor. A mystery? Not. Yeltsin needed to secure his impunity after his retiring.
Putin spent eight months on the post of prime minister. In essence he was doing his pre-electoral campaign on this post. Two pre-electoral goals stood before him: pacify Chechnya (militants have invaded Dagestan), create a base for the victory of Putin’s Kremlin on the December 1999 elections and also get popular in the political sense.
On September 4th 1999 a car loaded with explosives caused the explosion of a residential building in Dagestan’s city of Buynaxk. On September 9th 1999 a house was blown up on Guryanov Street in Moscow. On September 13th a house was blown up in Volgodonsk. All of these events have caused Putin’s harsh reaction. The successful military operations in Dagestan and Chechnya that have followed these bombings have rapidly increased Putin’s rating. Later, since the finding of explosives and detonators in the basement of a Ryazan house looked extremely suspicious (The FSB claimed it was a “training operation”), part of our society started to suspect that the bombings of September 1999 were organized by the FSB in order to raise the ratings of the presidency candidate V. V. Putin. There was no independent investigation on this case and therefore it is impossible at the present time to prove or to refute such frightening accusations. Maybe we will learn the truth when we will have another president. Maybe we will never learn it. Minimally the Ryazan’s story is extremely suspicious.
A quite banal economic program was written for Prime Minister Putin. Also very harsh tax conditions were created in order to fill up the State’s budget. As a proof of his efficiency on his prime minister post on October 31st 1999 on Sergey Dorenko’s talk show Putin gave the growth rate of industrial production: 7%. On December 31 1999 Yeltsin spoke on television too, he said he is resigning before term and Putin became president interim.
What was Edward Limonov doing these months? On august 24th 1999, on Ukraine’s Independence Day members of the National-Bolshevik Party peacefully occupied the tower of the Sailors Club in Sevastopol. On a 36 meters altitude they hung out NBP flags and the banner “Sevastopol is a Russian city!” They spread leaflets with the text: “Kuchma, you will choke on Sevastopol!” After a few hours of siege the tower’s doors were forced. Sixteen National-Bolsheviks were arrested and spent six months in Ukrainian prisons. On January 29th 2000 I took the boys from a prison in Moscow where they arrived from Ukraine. A different political climate was in the country then and the prison commandant even shook my hand, thanking me for the courage of my party members. In Ukraine, especially in Crimea this action created an unseen arising among the millions of Russian-speaking as well as Ukrainian citizens who consider Sevastopol the holy city of Russian national glory. Never did any Russian political organization hold such a striking and big action during Ukraine’s eight-years history.
On February 23rd 2000 the National-Bolshevik Party formed a column on Pushkin Square. In the front we were carrying two black 20 meters-long banners. One read: “Down with autocracy and throne succession!” and the other: “Putin, we didn’t call for you, leave!” Columns of other opposition parties angrily looked at our slogans and us. They did not agree with us then. Today they do.