Explosions in cars and confusion: the murder of Dugina is a memory of Russia in the 1990s

Dugin is a creature of the same decade. He emerged from fringe politics, most notably as a founding member of the National Bolshevik Party, political provocateurs who combined communist and fascist symbolism with a fair dose of anti-Western sentiment. There are differing opinions about his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin now, although the ultranationalist’s teachings were in line with Putin’s expansionism, and Dugin is a vocal supporter of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

But today’s Russia is very different from the banditry of the 1990s. Putin’s rise on New Year’s Eve 1999 ushered in a new social contract: Russia would see an end to its criminal lawlessness, and in return, Russians would adopt a form of authoritarian rule. In Russia, it was no longer bandits who ruled, but Putin’s special services. This did not mean that the assassinations were no longer part of the Russian political landscape, but that they tended to be carried out against those who challenged Putin’s authority.

Regardless of who is behind this assassination, or who was the real target of Dugin or her father, the explosion could mean a change in the pattern of contemporary political assassinations in Russia.

During the two decades of Putin’s rule, many of his most prominent opponents have been killed by violent death.

One of the first such cases was the murder of an investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya. She was shot dead on the landing of her own house – on Putin’s birthday. Arrests and convictions followed, but her colleagues still insist that those responsible for the murder were never brought to justice.
Then there was poisoning Alexander Litvinenko, a former agent of the Federal Security Service (FSB), a well-known critic of Putin. Litvinenko died in 2006 after highly radioactive polonium-216 was added to his tea. In a deathbed statement, Litvinenko blamed Putin; The European Court of Human Rights and the British investigation said Russian agents used lethal poison.

In 2015, Russian society was shocked by the assassination of politician Boris Nemtsov. A politician who openly criticizes Putin’s involvement in the Donbas war has been shot dead in front of the Kremlin.

The list goes on. Alexey Navalny, who in many ways inherited the mantle of opposition leader from Nemtsov, is currently serving his sentence in a Russian penal colony. He survived poisoning with the Novichok nerve agent, for which he blames the Russian security services.
The car bombing that killed Dugin bears more than a vague resemblance to the dark assassinations of a number of pro-Russian separatist leaders in the Donbass in the years leading up to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.
In many of these cases, such as explosion in cafe As a result of the assassination of Donetsk separatist leader Alexander Zakharchenko, Russian officials blamed Ukrainian spies or saboteurs for the killings. However, many observers suspected that these killings were most likely related to Russian intelligence agencies getting rid of problematic separatist leaders who were too difficult to control.
Another possible explanation could be that the murders were actually related to business disputes that were settled. in classic gangster style.

While we do not know who was behind this attack, it is certain that the Russian government will find a way to capitalize on it.

The Kremlin has already seized on Dugina’s murder to lay the blame on an external enemy, Ukraine, and the FSB on Monday said it had uncovered Dugina’s case and blamed Ukrainian intelligence services for involvement, state media TASS reported.

Ukraine denies any involvement in the murder of Dugina, calling the claims of the FSB a fiction.

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