Viktor Bout, 44, a former Soviet/Russian military officer and current black market arms dealer with ties to Russian military intelligence — the GRU, was apprehended by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Thai law enforcement officials in March 2008. Following two years of deliberations in Thai courts and much to the protest of the Russian government, Bout was extradited last November to the United States to face trial at the Southern District Court of New York, which is set to commence with a hearing on Friday, January 21.
The Department of Justice has indicted him on four separate terrorist offenses:
Count one: conspiracy to kill U.S. nationals,
Count two: conspiracy to kill U.S. officers or employees,
Count three: conspiracy to acquire and use an anti-aircraft missile, and
Count four: conspiracy to provide material support or resources to a designated foreign terrorist organization.
Regarding count four, Bout is wanted for inciting civil wars and trafficking arms to Afghanistan, Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire), Liberia, Libya, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Sudan.
If found guilty of all counts, he faces “a mandatory minimum of 25 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison,” according to the Justice Department
Bout is also suspected of playing a key role in the clandestine deliveries of Russian arms to Syria and Iran by way of Belarus, which Ivan Safronov, a Russian journalist and military correspondent for the newspaper Kommersant, was investigating before he was mysteriously killed in 2007, when he apparently fell three stories from the window of his apartment building.
Bout’s arms are suspected to have been delivered to his terrorist client states by way of the vast fleet of cargo transport planes he acquired shortly after the 1991 disunion of the USSR.
Many of his customers included the Soviet Union’s client communist states as well as Marxist and Muslim extremist groups.
In an interview on CBS' 60 Minutes, Louis Milione, the top DEA agent credited with the capture of Bout, recalled the meeting in which he and another undercover DEA agent passing as Colombian FARC (revolutionary armed forces) members signed a deal with Bout for weapons to “fight against the Colombian Army and the American pilots that protected them.”
Milione recalled how Bout said
he would be able to supply “Anti-personnel mines. Fragmentation grenades. Armor-piercing rockets. Money laundering services. And all within the context of speaking about a shared ideology of communism
and fighting against the Americans.” [Emphasis added.]
“Jimmy from Brooklyn,” a frequent caller to WABC 77 radio and renowned expert on communism who has debriefed agents of the FBI and CIA, sees Viktor Bout as proof that there was no real Soviet collapse, that communism never fell, and that the Cold War is far from over. Before it was announced that Thailand would extradite Bout to the United States, Jimmy observed
the following about the case:
They can’t let this guy come to America and be interrogated, because they would find out that all of these conservative talk-show hosts, all of these Republicans, were all wrong about Reagan defeating the Soviet Union. When you capture a Soviet agent sending Soviet weapons to communist terror groups and Muslim terror groups, that negates all this crap we’ve been hearing for 20 years that we defeated the Soviets.
This revelation may be what Britain’s Daily Telegraph
was alluding to in a recent article
, which asserted that the “Kremlin is 'terrified' that America's forthcoming trial of Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout will expose his links to top Russian officials and Moscow's secret deals with controversial regimes around the world.”
Robert Amsterdam, an international lawyer from Canada, told the Telegraph that the information Bout possesses is “limitless,” adding:
He is connected to Russia's shadow state and the most powerful elements of the power elite. He has tremendous information on how that shadow state works and on its dealings with Venezuela, Iran and across Asia. It would be an intelligence coup to debrief this man if he will allow himself to be debriefed.
From his jail cell in New York, Viktor Bout revealed in an interview
with RIA Novosti
, Russia's state-run news agency, efforts by U.S. authorities to get him to confess to his crimes with the promise of a lighter sentence:
They offered a milder sentence, a shorter term and an opportunity to bring my family to the United States in case I tell them everything I know about my ties in Russia and other countries. But I responded that I have nothing to tell them: I know nothing about the things they took interest in.
Despite his present refusal to cooperate with U.S. officials, the upcoming trial is bound to shed more light on Bout and Russia’s secret terror network. In an exclusive interview with The New American, “Jimmy from Brooklyn” elaborated the implications of the Bout trial:
Viktor Bout proves several things: He proves the continuing Soviet assault against America and the Free World. Bout proves that the communists use terrorism, drugs and narcotics, and deception as forms of warfare. They are unified and worldwide.
Jimmy’s claim that communists are “unified and worldwide” is further evidenced by the fact of last year’s 12th annual International Meeting of Communist and Workers Parties, in which communist parties from all over the world gathered in South Africa and called for an international united front
. They were addressed by Viktor Tyulkin
, a Member of Russia’s Parliament — the Duma — and leader of the Russian Communist Workers' Party-Revolutionary Party of Communists.
In regard to how the conventional wisdom, especially among contemporary conservatives, that communism is no longer a threat fits in with the case of Viktor Bout, “Jimmy from Brooklyn” explained:
Bout['s case] also shows the total lack of understanding among conservatives about Soviet/communist operations and movements. The U.S. Left is quiet about this and the conservative talk-show hosts are also quiet about this. It’s not enough to be a conservative; you also have to be an anti-communist.
Just as a communist is someone who fights to promote communism, an “anti-communist,” Jimmy noted, “is somebody fighting against communism.” He further asserted that the anti-communist movement must be just as well-informed and active as the communist movement in order to effectively combat and defeat it.
In addition to “Jimmy from Brooklyn,” other individuals contending that the collapse of the Soviet Union was staged in order to facilitate a strategy of deception and terrorism against the United States and the West include William F. Jasper of The New American
, Dr. Joseph Douglas, high-ranking KGB defector Anatoly Golitsyn, especially in his 1984 book, New Lies for Old,
and in several decades' worth of reports written by the leadership of the anti-communist John Birch Society (click here
for example). The claims made by all of these appear to be vindicated by the case of Viktor Bout, which is bound to reveal more on Russia’s terror network.
The pre-trial hearing for the Bout case will commence at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, January 21, at the Southern District Court of New York, in the Daniel Patrick Moynihan U.S. Courthouse in lower Manhattan.
Photo: Suspected Russian arms smuggler Viktor Bout, center, is led by armed Thai police commandoes as he arrives at the criminal court in Bangkok, Thailand Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2010.