Saturday, June 16, 2018

In Dmitriyev Case, Russian Forces of Evil Prove More Inventive than Forces of Good, Orekh Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, June 16 – The decision of a Karelian appeals court to reinstate the charges against Memorial activist Yury Dmitriyev, Anton Orekh says, not only represents a major disappointment given that earlier a court had dismissed those charges but also shows that in Russia today “the Forces of Evil are much more inventive than the Forces of Good.”

            “When Dmitriyev was held to be innocent and released, this was a sensation,” the Moscow commentator says, “because such verdicts in Russia are like mammoths. Everyone knows that they existed but no one personally has ever seen them” – especially in a high-profile political case (

            This earlier outcome also showed that the charges against Dmitriyev were ridiculous and without foundation. “But the Forces of Evil were not ready to give up; and they discovered ‘new circumstances’” involving a report by a psychologist who has discovered that his daughter had suffered from his actions long after the fact and thus should be retried.

            The appeals court has thus thrown everything back to the lower court, and once again an entirely innocent man will be dragged through all the stages of this farce, Orekh says, in the name, the appeals court says, because it is concerned about protecting the rights of Dmitriyev’s daughter.

            During the first trial, she did not appear. Supposedly she was being shielded by the court. “Thanks at least for that,” the commentator continues.  “But now thanks to these ‘new circumstances, Natasha will have to appear in court. And she is not a teenager but in truth still a child.”

            And she will have to listen or even talk about “all this” – the prosecutor’s fantasies about “sex, pornography and pedophilia, about everything that interests the judges. And this, beyond doubt will strengthen her mental state and won’t it seems become for her a shame or a trauma.  And if this new review ends instead of exoneration but punishment, [her father] will be put away for 11 years.”

            “How old will this girl be when her father is returned to her?” Orekh asks. “How will she live with her glorious grandmother who once put her in an orphanage and now suffers for her reputation? In Russia now there are so many shameful cases all at once – Sentsov, the Seventh studio, Dmitriyev, Belykh and on and on.”

            “Even to list them takes time. And to follow them all is even more difficult. But if we do not follow them and raise a stink about what is going on, then people will be punished” however the powers that be want. And that will be shameful not just for those immediately concerned but for all of Russia.

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