[This interview, conducted by Danila Galperovich, is reprinted fromsvobodanews.ru. It has been translated for Frontpagemag.com by Yelena Glazova].
One of the best known and most respected figures in the Russian dissident movement, Vladimir Bukovsky, spoke to Radio Liberty about the principles and methods employed by the KGB operatives in their work with free thinkers. Which of those methods will be used in the very near future to control the latest wave of the protests that continue to transfix Russia?
Vladimir Bukovsky has always been a keen observer of the manner in which the KGB gradually regained its strength after initially losing power in 1991. KGB representatives now occupy the highest echelons of the power structure in Russia. What will happen in the near future? What should be expected by the participants of the protests?
This interview was conducted in England, in Vladimir Bukovsky’s home in Cambridge. The first part appeared in print on the 30th of December, Bukovsky’s birthday (he has turned 69). The interview’s second part will be published on January 4-5. As we present to our readers the translation of the interview, we congratulate Vladimir most warmly on his birthday.
Galperovich: The young people who came to the meeting at Bolotnaya Square are approximately 20-25 years of age, and they are managers, businessmen, artists; the frequenters and users of Facebook. They do not really understand the phenomenon of the KGB because the KGB did not exist as a visible phenomenon during their life time. Nonetheless, this young generation will be dealing with the KGB-trained operatives, all placed in key positions in the country. What should these young people know about their opponents? What should they expect? What awareness is central for these young people in their battle?
Bukovsky: Let me emphasize first of all that the KGB operatives have lost much of their qualitative acumen and sharpness in the last twenty years. In my time, the Central Committee of the Communist Party supervised the activities of the KGB, and without the Central Committee’s permission, the KGB was not able even to conduct searches. This stern control from above made their behavior precise and honed their actions; the Central Committee could always punish KGB operatives when, for instance, they committed errors or acted willfully and without permission. Thus, the KGB was very disciplined, highly professional. And although these operatives were at the height of their game, we were still able to score many victories in their very game, in their very field, so to speak. All in all, they no longer compared well with Stalin’s NKVD.
Since my time, however, they have fallen much lower. I frequently gasp in astonishment – their level is that of the most inapt provincial militia; they are not the KGB of old. They cannot even blow up the buildings in their capital city without exposing themselves and leaving traces. Comrade Stalin would have shot them all. When, for instance, they killed Zelimkhan Yandarbiev in Qatar and got caught immediately after – this appeared almost unreal. Why do they choose to act while being observed by cameras? How do they use traceable telephone lines and then travel to some diplomat’s country house? In our time this would be unimaginable. The former operatives were of a much higher qualification. [Read the rest]
posted by: jrtelegraph