Yesterday, closed trial of retired Major General in the Soviet KGB Oleg Kalugin ended. It took 22 days of Moscow City Court to sentence Oleg Kalugin to 15 years of maximum security prison and to deprive him of all his military ranks and decorations.
In this way the state punishes for high treason. Several agents who had worked for Russian intelligence were revealed as a result of this person’s activity. Kalugin published secret information about a series of actions carried out by Soviet intelligence, which were aimed for discrediting CIA, FBI director and US counter-intelligence. The question is about his memoirs, and first of all about his book First Department (1994).
According to RTR-Vesti, Kalugin’s lawyers intend to appeal against the sentence. Though, it hardly will change something. The state prosecutor, Vadim Pivnenko is satisfied with the court decision. The prosecution was in time: since July 1, a new criminal code comes into effect, which forbids considering a case in absence.
However, this sentence will be most likely come into effect only on paper. At the moment, the ex-KGB general quietly lives in the US, not far from Washinton, in his house bough for $ 120,000. Apropos, Kalugin is a “political consultant.” He occupies himself with bell lettres, while, so to say, forming “adequate image” of Russia abroad.
Apropos, yesterday, one more person was sentenced in absence: ex-FSB (Federal Security Service) worker, Alexandr Litvinenko (he was put on probation). Alexandr Litvinenko was accused of exceeding his commission and steeling explosives. This seems to be a hint to Litvinenko – who is co-author of the film Attempt at Russia, advertised in the West by well-known oligarch Berezovsky, and who actively, and without any proofs, accuses FSB of organizing explosions in Moscow and Volgodonsk. According to Polit.Ru, the trials of Kalugin and Litvinenko are unprecedented in new Russian history, taking into account the fact that the trial in absence practice was used against intelligence workers only in the USSR…
P.S. The story of Kalugin one more time shows which state and public persons the epoch of “democratic changes” declared by Gorbachev has promoted. Kalugin actively participated in democratic movement, appeared in mass meetings in Moscow. In general, the first accusation against him was brought by KGB already in June, 1990. The officer was deprived of decorations and rank, though soon “democratic wave” returned everything to him, including his general pension.
Kalugin was a member of Military for Democracy organization. October 1990, he participated in the constituent congress of Democratic Russia movement, the movement of well-known democrats Yegor Gaidar, Yuly Rybakov and others. Supported by then-popular politicians, like economist Tatyana Koryagina, Nikolai Ivanov, Thaelmann Gdlyan, Oleg Kalugin became USSR people’s deputy.
So, generally speaking, Kalugin was not alone, and not he only should be tried. Everybody of them should be accused either of espionage, or of “shock therapy,” or of being accomplice of Chechen militants (however, some of them prefer to call it “human rights activist”). Though, this could be characterized even more sharply, as Ivan Lentsev, Zavtra columnist did: “Small fries, screws were accused, while real betrayers seat in public funds and receive rewards and pensions for long service. Hunting for Kalugin was dully declared, while ex-KGB chief Bakatin who brought Russian special services to degradation is in freedom. Some average FSB worker Litvinenko was accused, while Gorbachev and Yeltsin, Berezovsky and Gusinsky take the air.”
Sergei Yugov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/06/26/43282.html
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969