Saturday, July 17, 2004

Russia to Journalists: Bang, Bang, You're Dead!

Paila Peloyan — the editor-in-chief of the Moscow-based Armenian Pereulok was found dead on the Moscow Outer Ring Road between 2 am and 3 am Saturday. According to 5Kanal, there are conflicting reports about the means of his murder, either skull and brain trauma or multiple stab wounds. Peloyan is the second journalist to be murdered in Moscow in less thanKlebnikov two weeks. On July 9, Paul Klebnikov,  a US citizen and editor of Forbes Russia was gunned down by unidentified assassins as he left his office in the Russian capital. Of course, Klebnikov's murderers and those who ordered it are still at large.

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) Klebnikov's murder was the fifteenth during the short reign of Czar Putin. Peloyan's death now brings that number to sixteen. CPJ states that Russian has a "shameful record' regarding these deaths, no one has been brought to justice in any of the cases.

"This culture of impunity sends a shocking message to the world about your indifference to press freedom, and reassures those who use violence to silence their critics that they can literally get away with murder,"

The CPJ has also included Russia in its annual list of the 10 World’s Worst Places to Be a Journalist, along with Iraq, the West Bank and Zimbabwe.
 
The situation in Russia is one of lawlessness and dictatorship. Empire is a primary focus of its foreign policy. Russia produces and exports pirated product. Russia produces and exports mafia thugs. Russia circumvents international embargos. And Russia kills journalists.

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