Category Archives: Human Rights


Smersh, Stalin’s Secret Weapon Published in Russian In January of this year, after five months of receiving no answer about the publication date of the Russian translation of my book “SMERSH, Stalin’s Secret Weapon”, Director of the Russian State Archive of Social and Political History (RGASPI), Andrei Sorokin, decided to forbid the Political Encyclopedia (ROSSPEN) publishing house in… Read More »

George Orwell’s “Hate Week” on Russian TV

Angus Roxburgh is a British distinguished foreign correspondent. He knows Russia well: in the 1980s, he was the Sunday Times Moscow correspondent until he was expelled from the Soviet Union accused of espionage; in the 1990s, he was back to Moscow as the BBC’s Moscow correspondent. Later he worked as an advisor and speechwriter for Putin’s communications team. His knowledge… Read More »

Power of the Siloviks Widens

On July 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law that expands the Federal Security Service (FSO) powers. The draft of the law was introduced in February of 2017 to the State Duma by Putin himself. Now the FSO is able to classify information about the property of the highest state officials. The text of the law is… Read More »

NGOs Banned Completely from Russia

On March 28, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed two more laws restricting human rights. The first was the law banning “undesirable” foreign and international NGOs from creating legal entities in Russia and Russians from participating in them. The draft law was submitted to the State Duma (lower house of the Russian Parliament) by the government on October 10, 2016. The… Read More »

Torture in Russia Reaching Pandemic Proportions

In 2001, during the Second Chechen War in Russia (1999-2009), I was finishing my book The Perversion of Knowledge. That war started on August 26, 1999, ten days after Vladimir Putin, at the time FSB (State Security Service, a successor of the KGB) Director, became Russian President, and after a series of mysterious apartment building bombings in Russia. The… Read More »

Team29 fights for civil rights in Russia

On February 2, 2016, the Team29, an informal association of lawyers and journalists based in Russia that supports the Raoul Wallenberg Research Initiative-RW70 and defended historian Boris Sokolov in the court, distributed its weekly newsletter. Here are main points, compiled by Katya Alalykina, and translated by Vadim Birstein: On February 1, 2017, a regular court session on the… Read More »