The American media is amazingly predictable. I click on CNN and guess what I see? A huge photo of Russian oligarch and tycoon Boris Berezovsky, who died today at 67 years of age. And supposedly…no one knows how…yet. Natural questions arise, such as: What did Berezovsky die of? Why did he die so young (by Western standards)? And…dun dun dun! Was he murdered? All of these questions then lead to…
Yes, as I discuss openly in my novel, Berezovsky was Putin’s enemy. He was exiled, living in London after all, like many of the oligarchs. Berezovsky was in no way a choir boy. He was one of the oligarchs that took full advantage of the chaos of the 1990s after the fall of the Soviet Union. He was a billionaire, and many Russians believe he acquired his money through unethical practices. Putin was one of them.
It’s been famously told, and I re-created the actual event in I, Putin, that in summer 2000, Putin had all the oligarchs come to the Kremlin and warned them to stay out of politics…or else. He made good on his threat, most notably with Mikhail Khodorkovsky. But again, Khodorkovsky is no choir boy either.
You see to understand Russia and the way it works, you have to think in shades of grey, not in black and white like us Westerners do. And when thinking in grey, you have to realize that sometimes not everything is as it seems. The Western/American media doesn’t always have it right. And insinuations aren’t always right.
Just because Berezovsky died doesn’t mean Vladimir Putin is behind his death. Enough said.