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Another spectacular homicide with strong political overtones in Russia’s capital–Stanislav Markelov, who represented Russia’s best known exposé journalist, Anna Politkovskaya, was shot dead just after giving a press conference. The Times (London) reports:
Officials said that Stanislav Markelov… was shot dead in the street by an unknown gunman moments after speaking out about the case of Yuri Budanov. Budadov was sentenced to 10 years in jail in 2003 for the murder of 18-year-old Kheda Kungayeva, a Chechen woman snatched from her home in March 2000 and taken to the colonel’s office. There she was allegedly raped before Budanov, who accused her of being a rebel sniper, strangled her. The case caused widespread revulsion and Budanov became the first senior Russian officer convicted of human rights abuses during the Chechen campaign. He was released from jail four days ago.
Politkovskaya was shot dead on October 7, 2006—which, coincidentally or not, is Vladimir Putin’s birthday. She had been a courageous critic of Putin and his government, particularly of its actions in the Caucasus. A murder prosecution relating to her death is pending in a Moscow court now. It has repeatedly featured witnesses and evidence linking her murder to senior Russian intelligence service figures.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — August 5, 2016, 12:08 pm
Sidney Blumenthal on the origins of the Republican Party, the fallout from Clinton’s emails, and his new biography of Abraham Lincoln
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Years ago, I lived in Montana, a land of purple sunsets, clear streams, and snowflakes the size of silver dollars drifting through the cold air. There were no speed limits and you could legally drive drunk. My small apartment in Missoula had little privacy. In order to write, I rented an off-season fishing cabin on Rock Creek, a one-room place with a bed and a bureau. I lacked the budget for a desk. My idea was to remove a sliding door from a closet in my apartment and place it over a couple of hastily cobbled-together sawhorses.
Amount by which a typical good-looking U.S. worker will out-earn a typical ugly one over a lifetime:
A Japanese inventor unveiled a new invisibility cloak that uses a material made of thousands of tiny beads called “retro-reflectum.”
A couple at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Greenville, South Carolina, left their waitress a note telling her “the woman’s place is in the home,” in lieu of a tip.
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"She never thanked me, never looked at me—melted away into the miserable night, in the strangest manner I ever saw. I have seen many strange things, but not one that has left a deeper impression on my memory than the dull impassive way in which that worn-out heap of misery took that piece of money, and was lost."