RFE/RL: What about the date of Basayev's death? He was accused of preparing a major terrorist act on the eve of the Group of Eight summit in St. Petersburg. And in this regard, it is reminiscent of the death of former Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov on March 8 last year, International Women's Day. Can we consider Basayev's death to be another specially prepared holiday gift? I mean, is it possible that they announced the death today, but it actually happened some time ago?
Golts: I think such a version is possible. Moreover, all the commentators reacted to the recent declaration of President Vladimir Putin of his intention [in the wake of the killing of four Russian diplomats in Iraq] to destroy terrorists everywhere in the world by saying, "Of course, you can give the order to 'destroy terrorists,' only for some reason they can't destroy Basayev." I think that a decision to destroy him "on a certain date" is definitely possible.
Monday, July 10, 2006
RFE/RL's Russian Service talking to military analyst Aleksandr Golts: