With Boston Bombing, Vladimir Putin's Luck Continues

Words as venomous as Kadyrov used can hardly give Americans any comfort that he and Putin were innocent of involvement in the Boston bombing. Both were outraged over the implementation of the Magnitsky list, however watered down, by the Obama administration. In shocking fashion, Russia imposed its own retaliatory blacklist on Americans, focusing on those involved in the arrest and prosecution of terrorist and Russian national Victor Bout, whom Russia has stood behind from the moment of his arrest by international law enforcement officers. This support of Bout, of course, does not help hearts rest easy that Russia stands with the U.S.; nor does Russian support for Iran.

The fly in the ointment, where blaming Putin for the Boston bombing is concerned, is that it appears Putin’s administration warned Obama about the bombers in 2011. Of course, that could have been more dumb luck for Putin, just evidence that the Russian left hand does not know what the right is up to. It was certainly still more good fortune for Putin that despite the warning, the bombers weren’t intercepted and were allowed instead to perpetrate a deed that served Putin’s interests so perfectly and in such a timely manner.

Russia also has much reason to be concerned about its domestic terrorists: it is hosting the Winter Olympics next year right in their midst, in the southern Russian city of Sochi. It is simply inexplicable and inexcusable that the games were awarded to Sochi given the lawlessness and unchecked terrorism that pervades Russia, to say nothing of Russia’s aggression against Georgia, its poverty, its massive infrastructure problems, and the fact that Sochi has a warm climate.  Americans should not risk their lives to make Putin’s regime look good, and to hide his ghastly record of human rights atrocities.

The attack in Boston can only remind the world of the failure of Putin’s policies in Chechnya. The more tightly he has squeezed the restive republic, the more problems have flared up in surrounding areas like Dagestan, where Russian government officials are regularly murdered. And none of this changes the reality of Putin’s hatred for the United States, which is palpable in Kadyrov’s venomous words about the bombers, and in the vitriolic treachery of American defector Tim Kirby, who churns out anti-American propaganda for Russian state television. In today’s Russia, citizens can be arrested simply for taking meetings with Americans, though such hatred is hardly surprising given that Putin is a career KGB spy.

When an opinion piece in the Boston Globe concluded that the marathon bombing shows that Russia and the U.S. “may face a shared threat,” it was dead right -- they sure do. His name is Vladimir Putin, and like Leonid Brezhnev before him, he is even more dangerous to the people of Russia than to Americans, whom he despises because their values directly contradict his own.