Jan 29 2007
The contract killing of journalist Anna Politkovskaya is many times seen as a contract killing by Russian government agents. It is no doubt a contract killing, but my suspicions have been that she was killed because she was getting too close to some uncomfortable truths regarding things in Chechnya – organized crime details. A review of her death
When Politkovskaya finished, she drove home in her silver Vaz 2110 and parked a few feet from the entrance to her building. She carried two bags of groceries up to her apartment, on the seventh floor, in the buildingâ€™s tiny elevator and dropped them at the door. Then she went down to fetch the rest of her parcels. When the elevator opened on the ground floor, her killer was waiting. He shot her four timesâ€”the first two bullets piercing her heart and lungs, the third shattering her shoulder, with a force that drove Politkovskaya back into the elevator. He then administered what is referred to in Moscow, where contract killings have become routine, as the kontrolnyi vystrelâ€”the control shot. He fired a bullet into her head from inches away. Then he dropped his weapon, a plastic 9-mm. Makarov pistol whose serial number had been filed away, and slipped into the darkening afternoon.
The detail in question, in my mind, is the leaving of the gun. A plastic 9mm is professional’s choice of weapon, and something anyone tied to the government would avoid. With guns a dime a dozen the selection of this weapon is interesting. At this range a slingshot could kill. But the real question is why drop it there, at the scene? There are arguments pro and con I guess being detained right near the scene, but the truth is any gloves being worn would have the tell tale gunpowder marks (and probably blood splatter) so leaving the gun is not really going to get you too far. But leaving the gun does send a message. The question is who would benefit from that message.
In crimes like this, the obvious is usually and illusion.