Comment on Boris Nemtsov by Fairfield University Professor


Director of Russian, East European, and Central Asian Studies calls for full investigation into killing. Nemtsov was to have led a major demonstration in Moscow opposed to Putin's policies. “Nemtsov stood forthrightly for a democratic Russia, integrated into Europe.”

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (March 2, 2015) – David W. McFadden, Ph.D., director of Russian, East European, and Central Asian Studies and professor of history at Fairfield University, had the following to say on Boris Nemtsov:

“Boris Nemtsov, former deputy prime minister of the Russian Federation, former most successful Governor of Nizhni Novgorod, one of the most successful regions of Russia during the 1990s, most recently Governor of Yaroslavl, and one of the most persistent, most outspoken, critics of President Vladimir Putin, was murdered on Friday night as he was walking with his Ukrainian woman friend on the bridge over the Moscow River overlooking the Kremlin and Red Square. This murder is under investigation by the Russian State police and Security Services. Putin has taken personal charge of the investigation. Nemtsov was to have led a major demonstration in Moscow on Saturday opposed to Putin's policies, particularly focused on the economic hardship of people in the wake of the War between Russian-backed separatists and Ukraine and the sanctions imposed by Europe and the United States.

The murder has been condemned by all western governments. Numerous ambassadors to Russia from the UK, other European Union countries and others have been particularly saddened by this murder, having known Nemtsov and worked with him for years. Nemtsov stood forthrightly for a democratic Russia, integrated into Europe. He has been a persistent critic of Putin for years, most recently criticizing him for the billions spent on Sochi Winter Olympics, and the seizure of Crimea last March. Millions of Russians support him, and there has been an outpouring of sympathy following his murder.

There is no doubt this was a contract killing. The question remains: who let the contract?

A full and transparent investigation must be done, and all those who care about Russia, and freedom for Russia, and all those who are working to end the war in Ukraine should insist on knowing the truth.”

-David W. McFadden, Ph.D. Professor of History Director, Russian, East European, and Central Asian Studies Fairfield University

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 6, 2015

Vol. 47, No. 197

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