Saturday, February 25, 2012

Vladimir Putin: The Godfather of a Mafia Clan

Mick Brown at the British newspaper the Telegraph wrote an interesting piece about Masha Gessen, the author of a new book on Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

Gessen’s book, The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin, provides a compelling and exhaustive portrait of a man who rose without trace from being a minor KGB and St Petersburg bureaucrat to become what Gessen describes as 'the godfather of a mafia clan’, who has amassed a personal fortune that in 2007 was estimated by one Kremlin insider to be $40 billion.

It is a brave journalist who undertakes to write a critical – not to say overtly hostile – biography of Putin, in a country where press freedom is severely circumscribed, self-censorship a useful survival mechanism, and where those who have written disobligingly about Putin and his close allies, or dug too deeply into the corruption endemic in Russian politics and business, have often come to grief. In her years as a journalist, Gessen herself has been threatened, intimidated and burgled.

You can read the rest of the interesting piece via the below link:

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