Skip to main content

Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File (2007)

Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File. Documentary. (2007, 104 mins) IMDB

...Why did the Russians kill Litvinenko?...


he documentary, Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File, chronicles the battle between a former FSB agent, Alexander Litvinenko, and the powers of the Russian government, in particular Russian president Putin.

Litvinenko's life and death made headlines around the world because he was poisoned in London with Polonium 210--a rare radioactive metal.

For those who may not know, the FSB is simply the KGB by another name in the post-communist Russia. Unlike the US and UK were there is a split between domestic counter-intelligence and foreign intelligence gathering, the FSB operates internally and externally.

Litvinenko worked for the FSB in what you might consider an FBI-type capacity. His job was to track down the Russian mafia and apparently he was good at it, but that's not what got him in trouble.

Post the fall of communism, Russia and Chechnya engaged in a struggle where Russians soldiers fought in Chechnya and Chechnya's carried out terrorist acts in Moscow. The details aren't important to this discussion, but the controversy included Litvinenko's allegation that certain bombings weren't carried out by the Chechnya rebels, but by the FSB, by the Russian government. He alleges a conspiracy theory to garner support among the Russia people for continued military action in Chechnya. He and others were outspoken about the Chechnya issue.

Were they telling the truth? Was there a conspiracy? I don't know. I have no way of knowing, but it is certainly plausible. It is believable. A number of critics were murdered and the suggestion is Putin was behind it. They died to silence the criticism and I suppose to send a message to others who might want to be critical.

If it is true the Russian government was behind his murder with Po-210, why would they use such a method? The material is so rare, the source can be traced and it points to Russia. They have the largest supply of it (97% of the worlds supply). It immediately tells the world, they murdered him and therefore he was probably telling the truth about the FSB involvement in the Moscow bombings. It seems like such a stupid thing to do. So why?

The most plausible scenario? Pathologists and physicians and detectives would find a dying Litvinenko and not know the cause. They would not know it was Po-210. Standard methods of murder would have been detected and uncovered thereby increasing the chance of finding the murderer. Russia believed his death would remain a mystery. They miscalculated. The British brought in military scientist who were able to discover the Po-210. A smoking gun with Russian fingerprints.

The sad truth for the his family is a lack of justice. A murder suspect is known and living freely in Russia and can't be brought to trial in London.

There is supposedly a gentlemen's agreement between nations where one nation doesn't murder someone in another country. Russia and Israel didn't the memo because there have been a number of murders carried out by both countries in foreign territories.

While many fears about nuclear physics and radiation are overblown and hyped, Po-210 would be a terrorists dream because ingesting a tiny amount is lethal and could kill many people. There's a story there, but it's been done.

Posted 2009/01/23 at 20h01ET in Movie Commentary.


Popular posts from this blog

Cast of Characters from The Protectors

Friday, September 16, 2011 ... Cast of Characters from The Protectors... M ost novels do not include a list of characters, although I have read some with them. Tolstoy readers would likely appreciate it. Plays do. Scripts don’t. Not sure what the thinking is, but I didn’t include it with my novel. I had a feeling I’d be shot if I had suggested it, but with the internet, I can provide such a list and here is the list of the major players in my first novel The Protectors (A Thriller).
Black Carr Security Consultants Limited Baird Carr, Former CIA Officer, Co-founder, OwnerEmerson Black, Former Secret Service Agent, Co-founder, OwnerSarah Bishop, Former FBI Agent, Senior ConsultantDebra Paeytonne, Office AdministratorBeth, ReceptionistStephen Tedeschi, Former Secret Service Agent, ConsultantNigel, Independent Consultant
U.S. Secret Service Ken Milton, DirectorRichard Heyward, Retired AgentJulian Constance, Agent, Killed in Assassination AttemptTrisha Evrington, AgentTerry Flannon, Agen…

Writing a Novel–The Deep Blue Cage–Introduction

Thursday, March 9th, 2017... I fight my insecurities and doubts and I withdraw farther away from people and life ... I n November 2016 I started work on a new novel with the working title: The Deep Blue Cage. A few weeks after I started, I stopped. I was feeling too depressed about everything including the idea of writing a new novel. It happens to me at various times, with varying degrees, and it is debilitating. The ultimate issue was: Why bother? Why bother write another novel no one will read and no one will care about. I also found I was dreading the writing process more and more. It was painful to think about. I walked away and focused on other things. Or tried to. That didn’t work either. I felt trapped and unsure where I should head, what I should do. I even asked the big question, what the hell is life about anyway. There’s no one answer to this question despite the proclamations of some and because I believe I can think critically, can reason, I look at it from many an…


Thursday, September 6, 2012
A homonym.
FAIRY—A fairy tale. A fairy godmother. Fairy—not a long, long way to run.
FERRY—A boat or ship to transport drunken Swedes back home from Copenhagen. It’s the Danish beer.
FairyFerrySamantha the Swimming Fairy by Daisy MeadowsEvening Ferry by Katherine Towler
Posted 2012/09/06 at 5h02ET in Words, Writing.