Sunday, September 2, 2018

American Patriot, Russian Patriot

While attention focused on the speeches of Megan McCain, and Presidents Bush and Obama at the memorial service for Sen. John McCain yesterday, there was a sidebar story that emerged a few days ago when the pallbearers were announced. There were the political types, like former Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the business leaders like FexEx Chair Fred Smith, and even friend, actor Warren Beatty. But one of the most significant choices was Russian dissident Vladimir Kara-Murza, who had bonded with McCain over human rights issues in Putin's organized crime state of Russia.

Putin's regime has made attempts on Kara-Murza's life in an effort to silence his voice about the regime's corruption and criminality, using a favorite tool of theirs: poison. He heads the Boris Nemtzov Foundation for Freedom, named after a Putin political opponent who was assassinated in Moscow in 2015, likely on orders from Putin through his internal police apparatus.

There were references in the eulogies yesterday to risking all for a higher cause. McCain's choice of Vladimir Kara-Murza to play a role in his memorial service put the spotlight on someone who is doing just that for his country.

(photo: Kara-Murza and his wife Yevgenia pause at McCain's casket)

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