Gaidar Speaks!

Yegor Gaidar was released from a Moscow hospital late Monday. Doctors are left baffled as to what caused his sudden illness on 24 November. But they concluded that Gaidar’s illness was the “effect of some toxic factor” but refrained from calling it poisoning. The reason of such undecided attitude of medical authority was failure to determine the nature of the substance,” reports Kommersant.

There has been much speculation over whether Gaidar was indeed poisoned or not. I’ve shared much of it, figuring that his illness was too coincidental and the fact that much of the media was at pains to connect Gaidar’s illness to Litvinenko’s raised too many red flags. This is still happening by the way. Every article about Gaidar mentions Litvinenko and the Kremlin’s possible involvement in both. I think that Russia Blog asks a pertinent question in regard to whether the Kremlin is connected to Gaidar’s illness. Yuri Mamchur writes, “Why would a person who survived this apparent assassination campaign fly back to Moscow?” Yeah, why would he? Surely if he was a target, the Kremlin’s shadowy Chekisty would have been waiting in a Moscow hospital with the poison syringe?

However, it seems that whether Gaidar was actually poisoned or not is superfluous. Gaidar’s camp has adopted the poison theory and it’s being repeated ad infinitium in the media as the accepted gospel. Not to mention that Gaidar himself believes that he was poisoned. In a commentary published in the Financial Times, he wrote the following:

I am not a doctor and realise the limits of unprofessional judgments. Nevertheless, when your life is at stake, it is hard to avoid attempting to understand what happened. My heart, brain, blood pressure, sugar level were either good or without abnormalities. Despite this, I suffered several hours of unconsciousness or semiconsciousness, an inability to control my body, and heavy bleeding from my nose and throat. One of the possible explanations that an unprofessional mind inevitably comes up with in such a situation is poisoning. I remember my state before breakfast very well. It was excellent. Half an hour later it was awful. However, this is an unprofessional view. I suppose that there are pathologies known to medicine that can cause such developments.

Straight from Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport, I headed for the clinic where they have known me for many years. Despite the fact that I landed late at night on a Sunday, the chief doctor convened specialists. I told them what happened and asked them to consider all scenarios that could explain these phenomena. By Monday morning, he had the results of the tests on his desk. One month before the Irish incident I had had a thorough medical check-up. Now we could compare the old and the current pictures. The doctor was unable to explain such large-scale and systemic changes in the body in terms of anything related to intoxication, within the possible range of illnesses known to medicine, nor any of their most exotic combinations. For reasons of professional ethics he could not use the word “poisoning”. A particular poisonous substance should be determined in order to do that. This is impossible 60 hours after the accident, especially if we are talking about secret toxic substances, the information on which is unavailable to open medical science. But we understand each other well. One may blame anybody, even the aliens. If we stay within the framework of common sense, it is poisoning we think of.

When the thought that this could be a result of somebody’s wilful actions crossed my mind for the first time on the afternoon of November 25, I started thinking about who could have orchestrated it. Who would gain from it? I do not have any property to speak of. Neither do I have a profitable metal or oil company, so there is nothing to take away. So, if this was attempted murder, politics was behind it. I have participated in Russian politics for many years now and I know quite a bit about it. I know its main figures well. By then I realised that my survival was a miracle. The fast rate of recuperation showed that the attempt did not aim at mutilation or injury, but murder. Who of the Russian political circle needed my death on the 24th of November 2006, in Dublin? I rejected the idea of complicity of the Russian leadership almost immediately. After the death of Alexander Litvinenko on November 23 in London, another violent death of a famous Russian on the following day is the last thing that the Russian authorities would want. In case of an explosion or skirmish in Moscow, one would think about radical nationalistic thugs first of all. But Dublin? Poisoning? This is obviously not their style.

Most likely that means that some obvious or hidden adversaries of the Russian authorities stand behind the scenes of this event, those who are interested in further radical deterioration of relations between Russia and the west. Within several hours, comparing the dates of events that took place during the past six weeks, I formulated a rather logical and consistent hypothesis on the reasons behind this. The world view regains its intrinsic logic and ceases resembling a Kafkaesque nightmare. Still, it does not look any more enjoyable. Well, as they say in Russia, as long as we are alive, we might even be happy some day, but that is a different story.

“Hidden adversaries of the Russian authorities” has been repeatedly raised in a variety of contexts. But the question remains: Who are the “hidden adversaries”? What do they want? And how is killing people going to help them get it?