Saturday, January 27, 2007

cold war nostalgia

In 1978 Georgi Markov was killed in London after being stabbed with a poison dart that was fired from an umbrella. A Bulgarian dissident, Markov was suspected to have been killed by a team made up of Russian KGB officers and Bulgarian secret police. The dart was filled with the poison Ricin, and Markov was dead in four days.

In 2001 the US attempted to kill Taliban leader Mullah Omar. A major 100-man commando raid in tandem with an air strike killed his son and two brothers while hitting a Red Cross station and killing several civilians. Mullah Omar was unharmed.

In early November of last year, a former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko, was poisoned in London by a radioactive material called polonium 210. It appears that he ingested it, perhaps at a sushi bar. It caused his body to react as though he had been receiving intense chemotherapy treatments, as his hair fell out and he lost weight rapidly. Some scientists liken the poisoning to the ingestion of a tiny nuclear bomb. While many in London, who may have come in contact with Mr. Litvinenko are undergoing testing for exposure, Litvinenko is thus far, the only person to have fallen ill.

The US has a policy against assassinating foreign leaders, instead they invade a country and kill hundreds of thousands of civilians? Personally, I would prefer to read headlines like "Saddam killed by exploding wrist-watch" or "Taliban leader falls victim to ebola-laced goat meat" rather than the "Deadliest day in Iraq since (insert random milestone here)" line the NY Times seems to run daily.

It isn't that I condone what the Russians did, I just like their style. They didn't bomb the London subway system, they just cheffed up some nuclear sushi and took out their target.

I miss the Cold War.