Friday, April 6, 2012

and a cautionary note

Since the announcement of the sentencing of Viktor Bout earlier, the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation (MID) has out out a statement to the press about how they do not see the matter resolved. *NOTE: Statement was apparently a press statement and is not as of yet available on the MID site in English.*

Sky News UK, just to pick one of the reports out there, has it like this:
"The Russian foreign ministry views the US court verdict sentencing Viktor Bout to 25 years in prison as baseless and biased," the ministry said in a statement.

"(We will make) all possible efforts to return Viktor Bout to the Motherland, using for this all the existing international legal mechanisms."
Noble of them, standing up for a citizen of their republic; wish more countries had done so when Westerners got left to take the fall in places like Angola and Equatorial Guinea back in the day... but...

...the honest observation is that Viktor Bout was doing what he was doing with the help of a lot of powerful interests. They want him home and back to work, or at least in a place where he isn't pressured to say what he knows.

The most legitimate observation is that the MID will, through legal challenges and diplomatic linkage, try to get Bout sent to "serve his time" back in Russia.

Less sporting of them would be to make certain that one or more Americans working in Russia is "caught doing something bad".

Of course, from the point of view of any post-Soviet 'crime' interests that Bout was hooked up with, he is and has been since his arrest simply a detail that needs to be eliminated, but that is a danger really only to Viktor Bout right now.

Consider the second above a cautionary note, friends who are working in and with Russian interests: That deal that just broke your way that looks too good to be true... probably is. Watch yourselves.

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