Putin and a ruthless murder
The wheels of bureaucracy grind slowly indeed in Britain, but the government’s conclusion this week that the murder of ex-Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko nearly a decade ago was personally approved by Vladimir Putin is yet more proof of the Russian president’s utter ruthlessness.
There are many ways the Russians could have assassinated Lit- vinenko, but they selected a spectacularly painful one: poisoning him with the radioactive substance polonium-210.
They wanted to make an example — and maybe satisfy a personal grudge of Putin’s, officials say.
If so, Putin achieves the dubious distinction of recalling Stalin, who also took a personal interest in how his enemies were killed.