La Russophobe Strikes Back

Letters, we get letters, we get lots of cards and letters every day. Even fan mail from La Russophobe!

Letter to the Editor: Reply to “Given Free Publicity On NTV, Khodorkovsky Only Incriminates Himself Further” (06/11/2011).

In a recent blog post, you touted a report about Mikhail Khodorkovsky on state-owned Russian TV channel NTV. Your post, which implied the Russian Kremlin is being open about its prosecution of Khodorkovsky, was grossly misleading.

You failed to notice that this reporting came only after Khodorkovsky’s conviction. You also failed to notice that public ignorance about the trial itself increased dramatically from 2005, clearly showing that the Kremlin hid the entire proceeding from the public when it counted.

By contrast, you grossly mischaracterize Western reporting of the recent EHCR verdict relating to Khodorkovsky. Contrary to your false claim, a vast number of Western outlets touted the court’s refusal to find Khodorkovsky’s conviction political.

You also mischaracterize the EHCR verdict itself, as did numerous Western reports. The verdict permits Khodorkovsky’s lawyers to submit additional evidence showing political motivation and does not find no such motivation was present. Instead, the decision merely finds that sufficient evidence for a conviction on that point has not yet been submitted, and the court’s rules require a truly profound showing in this regard.

You totally ignore the numerous convictions handed down against the Kremlin by the EHCR for grossly violating Khodorkovsky’s legal rights, actions which the court called “inhuman.” In other words, a stunning formal European pronouncement of Russian barbarism. The Kremlin is now Khodorkovsky’s debtor to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars, and there are numerous other challenges by Khodorkovsky’s lawyers to the Kremlin’s illegal actions still pending the European courts.

Predictably, you also totally ignore the ludicrous nature of accusing Khodorkovsky of stealing hundreds of millions of tons of oil, and you ignore the unquestionable fact that Putin has failed to keep his promise to purge Russia of oligarchs. All he has in fact done is to purge the oligarchs who are not pro-Putin, blithely allowing those close to him to continue doing exactly the same things for which Khodorkovsky rots in Siberia.

In short, far from confirming honesty and openness on the part of Khodorkovsky’s foes, your post merely shows in detail how their mendacity and subterfuge continue.

Yours truly,

La Russophobe


  1. “Your post, which implied the Russian Kremlin…”

    I’ve heard of the Moscow Kremlin, I’ve heard of the Nizhniy Novgorod Kremlin, but until today I’ve never heard of “the Russian Kremlin.”

    Based on tone, I’d guess that this really was written by a woman, but of course I could be wrong.

  2. Yalensis says:

    I’m confused…. She actually wrote a letter and put a stamp on it?

  3. So a wombat walks into a bar in Woolloomooloo, and says, “Anyone got change of ten dollars?” And the guy sitting next to him says….what? Oh, sorry; I thought it was OK to introduce unrelated subjects. I mean, since we’re talking about the European Court of Human Rights and whether or not charges that Khodorkovsky “stole oil from his own company” are “ludicrous” and whether Khodorkovsky’s legal rights were violated. A clue to this is found in the title of the court itself, oddly enough.

    Criminality does not in any sense figure in the mandate of the European Court of Human Rights; which is, and I quote; “examination of allegations of violations of the rights set out in the European Convention on Human Rights”. To put it another way, the ECHR does not care if Putin personally sawed Khodorkovsky’s mother’s head off with a Husqvarna chainsaw – provided he in no way violated Khodorkovsky’s human rights while he did so. The ECHR is concerned whether Khodorkovsky’s HUMAN rights were violated, not his legal rights, except and whereas said legal rights addressed human rights concerns. No verdict by the ECHR should be construed in any way as a reflection of anyone’s guilt or innocence as they pertain to charges of having violated tax law or having engaged in fraudulent business dealings. Those have nothing to do with human rights. Unless you can successfully argue that embezzlement and tax fraud are human rights, apples and oranges. Good luck with that, though.

    Yes, uh huh, the ECHR found that circumstances of Khodorkovsky’s detention were “inhuman”. For three months. August through October 2005 – six years ago.

    I certainly can’t tell you what to infer from that, but what I get out of it is that nothing to do with his detention from those 3 months in 2005 to the present day was “inhuman”.

    Not to get sidetracked or anything, but I notice in that same reference that Secretary Clinton said the ruling “raises serious questions about selective prosecution.” Unless Secretary Clinton intends on taking her bar exam anytime soon, she should keep her piehole shut on matters about which she knows nothing. In order for “selective persecution” to be considered a factor, the defendant must successfully argue that his having broken the law is irrelevant to the fact that others have broken the law and not been prosecuted. That kind of blows the plea of innocence out the window, doesn’t it? In fact, according to the definition of selective prosecution according to the United States Supreme Court, “A selective prosecution claim is not a defense on the merits to the criminal charge itself, but an independent assertion that the prosecutor has brought the charge for reasons forbidden by the Constitution.”

    “The verdict permits Khodorkovsky’s lawyers to submit additional evidence showing political motivation and does not find no such motivation was present.”

    Yawn. Every verdict does that. Oh, wait – except for where the judgment specifies the death penalty. Kind of too late for new evidence after that. If you get convicted of drunken driving, can you introduce evidence later that proves it wasn’t you, but someone who stole your drivers license out of your purse while you were in the ladies’ room? Sure you can. The verdict at the time did not disallow the possibility that it wasn’t even you – although you’d be a fool not to have brought it up at the time. Considering Khodorkovsky’s battalion of lawyers had since 2004 to prove political motivation, you can be sure they’ve already given it their best shot in the proof department.

    • Yalensis says:

      Actually, Secretary Hillary Clinton DID pass bar exam. She graduated Law School at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. That is where she met Bubba Clinton, who was also a law student at the time
      Despite that minor factual correction, I agree with you that she should shut her piehole.

      • Well, you’re partly right. In fact, she failed the DC bar exam.

        Amazing, I know; however, she’s in gallant company – JFK Jr. never passed the bar exam, and he was still an assistant DA. But Mrs. Clinton did pass the Arkansas bar. On that note, I’m curious – do you only have to take the bar exam once? How would it be verified that you’re current with present law if you haven’t practised in 18 years, as Mrs. Clinton has not. I mean, the law is changing all the time. I tried, “bar exam validity period” and whatever search terms I could think of, but I couldn’t find anything.

        Anyway, if Mrs. Clinton was an attorney, she should know better than to use such a term to argue Khodorkovsky is being picked on, since it presupposes he is guilty as charged.

  4. Come on, she is not a lady. Neither is Khodorkovsky, btw…

  5. La Russophobe is probably a neo-con agent who is devoted to the cause of subjugating Russia to western interests! Why else would she work so hard at what she does? hahaha!