Note to Self: When Chasing After Russian Spies, Phone Home

I’ve spent the last year or so trying to dig up novel information about Russia’s intelligence services, particularly the assassins employed by the Kremlin to eliminate enemies of the state. Mom is worried.

Comments: 15

  1. Son, your primary story was very, very good, enveloping me in the rationales of our Easter European type criminal. The story opened curtains to the dark hearts in Russian oligarch killer circles. Now, go home. We need you here. From, a grandmotherly type.

  2. So, you are chasing after people whose claims you can not verify, and yet you are trying to present it as well-documented evidence? Seems to me like a silly journalism. Why should we believe that these people actually telling you the truth, not some fantasy?

  3. @yulia Your interesting diction and name lead me to suspect that you may not be an entirely neutral reader.

  4. @Max Farthington Is there such thing as a neutral reader? But on the other hand, absence of hard evidence beside the story of one person is a sign of lazy journalism independently of my neutrality.

  5. No one ? Yes unless you are a true professional its risky for the investigating journalist. One may never fully know what they might on cover and who toes you can crush. Foreign or domestic. SR

  6. Michael, your mom is right, your reporting undoubtedly is "inconvenient" for the Russian security services, and there iis a long Russian tradition of "inconvenient" people being killed. Your reporting is very important, but exercise extreme caution, please.

  7. Your mother was right. They don't give you any advanced warnings. Take a tip from the voice of experience: avoid a certain Czech bar in Helsinki, unless you want to spend two weeks in the cardiac unit of a Helsinki hospital.

  8. Thanks for the outstanding stories. Now call your Mother.

  9. The idea to change the location of a meeting at the last minute is very wise. Your mother has perspective that you can't possibly have. Be prudent.

  10. To exercise caution. Do know that there are a lot of us readers out here who are 100% behind you. Investigative journalism has become a dangerous career choice, but its role its vital to society and democracy itself. Keep it up. Stay safe.

  11. Please tell your mother she is awesome.

  12. Thank you Michael for fantastic job covering what is happening in Eastern Europe, especially Russia and Ukraine. Love your work! A true journalist!

  13. Assassins, bombing hospitals... the only way to get rid of the demonic Putin is to crush Russia’s economy. But as long as trump, McConnell and the rest of the cabal in Washington remain in power and are in the pockets of Russia, this will not happen. Russia is committing war crimes, and our so-called president and his gang are as well. Providing aid and comfort to the enemy in time of war is treason. A full-out cyber war being waged on the US qualifies. This “administration” is abetting that effort in order to get re-elected. They know they won’t be, any other way.

  14. The Soviet services killed enemies and traitors at home and abroad. (Any scholar can provide a list of victims.). What the FSB and GRU is doing is in their genetic make up. This is an excellent piece of journalism. Please keep it up.

  15. Speaking of hero's, investigative journalists have always been at the top of that list. Low pay, terrible hours, and dangerous working conditions are not attributes that lure many into this line of work. But truth telling is a calling that democracies are built on and somehow we are lucky to have these kind of people walking among us. But it is no safer at home than it is in Russia now that the free press has been labeled an "enemy of the people" by the leader of the state. Investigative journalists have been killed on American soil for going after stories that the CIA want to keep hidden. Win your awards and then come home and change your line of work. The American people do not deserve the sacrifice you are making.