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Monday, May 14, 2007

Yelena Tregubova: Poster Child of the Neo-Soviet Union

The Independent reports on Yelena Tregubova (pictured) a case study in the neo-Soviet crackdown:

She is a vivacious blonde who narrowly escaped death from a bomb which exploded outside her flat, thanks to a last-minute decision to give her hairstyle a final crimping before running out to a waiting cab.

Now she sits in an anonymous hotel lobby in central London having fled Russia to seek political asylum in Britain because she is in "mortal danger".

Her crime? Apparently having offended the master of the Kremlin with her bestselling writings that have accused President Vladimir Putin of stifling political and press freedoms in Russia.

Yelena Tregubova, 33, is a former member of the Kremlin press corps whose racy first book Tales of a Kremlin Digger provides a rare look inside the corridors of power.

Tregubova published her account in October 2003 after spending three years travelling the country with President Boris Yeltsin, and another year covering his successor, Putin. "The main point was to say: Putin has killed freedom of speech in Russia. Of course, Yeltsin had his problems, but it was an era of freedom, an era of hope."

The book was an instant success in Russia. It included a flirtatious scene in a sushi bar with Putin when he was head of the FSB intelligence service. But Tregubova promptly lost her job on Kommersant and was blacklisted from Russian media. In 2004, a bomb exploded in the corridor outside her apartment, just moments before she opened the door, but she still resolved to stay in Moscow. When Anna Politkovskaya became the 13th journalist to be killed in Russia since Putin's election in 2000, Tregubova "saw how it could happen to me".

Why is Putin afraid of a free media? "Because he is from the FSB/KGB. When I was learning journalism, my teachers were the BBC Russian service, Voice of America and Deutsche Welle. For him, in Soviet days, they were enemies of the state. My friends were his enemies. The second reason is because if he were a strong leader he wouldn't be afraid. He is weak. He is afraid of his own citizens."


Anonymous said...

A-a-ah.. Come on! What a threat could be for her there in Russia? Some man wanted to kill her and even knew her cell phone number and called her to figure out her home address?! And it was in 2004? And now, after Politkovskaya was murdered the lady got scared? What a tale! Yet it may work for the British immigration authorities. I hope she calculated well before going where she can make more money. I guess Beresovskiy will be her next employer.

Anonymous said...

"anon" above obviously speaks for the chekists.

This seems evident from the usual Berezovsky smear (yawn). It is pathetic isn't it? They think everyone who doesn't love their handsome chief is in league with BB. They have got a much bigger problem on their hands than that. If only it was just a BB conspiracy. This rejection of their corrupt rule is genuinely from the people, not from a former oligarch. You can stop that by nuking BB. Or by beating the shit out of old men and Japanese journalists on peaceful marches in the streets of Moscow or St Petersburg.

Note the speed with which the KGB reponse came, almost as soon as this was posted on the blog. This shows they are monitoring LR.

Which also shows they are rattled by it. Good!

Ms Tregubova has made a wise move and I wish her well. the way you guys in the Lubyanka or wherever your current filthy little hole is, in my country we debate with journalists we disagree with. We don't bomb them.

That is the difference between civilisation and barbarity. But I I guess you wouldn't know that. Brains too small.

Now wait for the response.... probably by bloggers using "western" names. Don't be fooled - it will be the same old Olegs and Andreys from some neo-soviet disinformation office posing as ever-so-objective Westerners living and working in Moscow who say this is all a pack of lies.

Anonymous said...

yet again the official propaganda brochure of PutinJugend provides the answers:

Anonymous said...

Thanks mcmad. Not a pleasant sight. Should carry a health warning.

by the way, drop the /755.html from the URL and you should get to see it. i couldn't connect on the URL you posted.

Putinjugend indeed....

Anonymous said...

To: the second "anonymous", the one talking about "the chekists"

Yeah, yeah… The chekists… (yawn). The Big Brother is watching… Buy the way, let me introduce myself: major Pronin, KGB. You expected a higher rank? Well, I am not a simple major. I am the legendary major Pronin. Why you decided we are trying to smear Beresovskiy? Not at all. Of course, if he starts having sex with Ms. Tregubova and we know that, we may consider this option, but so far no signs of such…
So we are not trying to smear the guy. I even like him. Unlike you, the guy is smart. All my words were about Ms. Tregubova who has made a wise move. She already eaten up the money she received for her “Tales of the Kremlin digger”. Nothing to dig anymore. No demand on her creativity, nothing to make many on in Russia. Narrow specialty-this is the problem. In Great Britain she may have better opportunities. Especially if she appears there not by usual way as other decent 250 000 Russians living now in "London-grad", but with some scandal and tales about her sufferings and fears. It would make her eligible for refugee benefits (for a very black day), for stipend or a grant from Mr. Beresovsky and his Litvinenko Foundation. She may right another book about how she narrowly escaped from the neo-KGB paws of the neo-Soviet Russia. Or find some journalist job with BBC or like… For all this options some publicity will not hurt. This is what all her “new tales” are about. We wish her well too. In the worst case scenario, if her expectations are not met, she may still survive. The God created women so that they always have something to pay with for their pleasures and expenses.

Anonymous said...

this again to the anon that mentioned chekists. you seem so surprised at the quick "kgb" response to the idiotic blog, well let me tell you, that i'm not at all surprised at your quick CIA rebuttal! heil to the 4th reich.

Anonymous said...

Pronin? Who's he?

Anonymous said...

.... just a fantasy character for people who live in a country where fantasy rather than fact rules

Anonymous said...

This is Hector,

Anyone know where I can get an English compy of this book or if there even is one? I'm quite curious about the further lies this girl is going to spew about Yeltsin. "An era of hope"...Yeah, right! Homelessness, hunger, extreme poverty, wars, mafia, slave wages, .....the strangest examples of hope I've ever seen.

Anonymous said...

Why not read it in Russian Hector?

Anonymous said...


It may not be in English yet. But wait a while. The lady-author is in the Free World embrace, so she is going to start selling her assets

Anonymous said...

Yelena Tregubova simply provides affirmation of three inescapable facts: 1) Russian women are the most intelligent women in the world, 2) Russian women are the most beautiful in the world, and 3) "Behind every great fortune, there is a crime"---Balzac