The death of Darya Douguina - Accusations and hypotheses [OPINION]


For the past few days, discussions in Russia have revolved around the murder of Darya Douguina, daughter of the ultranationalist philosopher Alexander Dougin. Although many commentators believe that the latter has no real political influence, he is sometimes considered the "brain" of Vladimir Putin for his esoteric theories about the historical destiny of Russia within an engaged "Eurasia". in an existential struggle with the Atlanticism of Westerners. Aged 29, Darya Douguina, herself known as an activist for her violently anti-Ukrainian remarks, was killed during the explosion 40km from Moscow of his father's Toyota Land Cruiser (probable target of the operation), who had intended to take the car but withdrew at the last moment. Subsequently, Dugina received the posthumous Order of Courage from Putin in a memorial ceremony in front of many politicians.

For now, the attack remains the subject of reciprocal accusations from Moscow – speaking of an act ordered from Ukraine – and from Kyiv, which denies any responsibility, seeing in it the hand of the Russian secret services and fearing the instrumentalization of the crime to legitimize new anti-Ukrainian actions. Another hypothesis has been put forward by former Russian MP Ilya Ponomarev (now in Ukraine), who says he is in contact with the National Republican Army, an unknown Russian anti-government group, which claimed responsibility for the attack, promising to other actions against the Putin regime. However, these various hypotheses raise many questions.

According to the official Russian account, released less than 48 hours after Darya Dougina's death, she was killed by the Ukrainian Natalya Vovk, entered Russia on July 23 with her 12-year-old daughter, after traveling to France and Poland. She would have lived in the same building as Douguina before committing the car bomb attack and fleeing to Estonia in a Mini Cooper, whose license plates would have been changed twice. To support this hypothesis, purported images of Vovk's (maiden name Shaban) photo ID were published, alleging his membership in the Azov battalion, as well as videos from security cameras showing his movements. This apparently detailed scenario of the Russian authorities nevertheless presents several gray areas. How was it possible to identify with certainty the author of the crime in record time? Where is the evidence of a concrete link between Vovk and the explosion of the car driven by Duguina? Furthermore, as noted Christo Grozev from the Bellingcat investigative group, Natalya Shaban's military ID photo is not a discovery, having already been uploaded by Russian hackers in April 2022. It must therefore have been known to the authorities long before its supposed to enter Russian territory on July 23. This being the case, it is hard to believe that a Ukrainian soldier would have been allowed to operate freely in Russia for a month and then let her flee to Estonia. As for his motivation, if we cannot completely exclude the idea of ​​an assassination by Ukrainian nationalists, it is difficult to understand the interest for Kyiv of an attack (not claimed) against Alexander and/or Darya Dougina, characters certainly in sight but not of the foreground.

Uncertainties also hang over the radically opposed hypothesis of Ilya Ponomarev, broadcaster of the claim of the attack by the National Republican Army (ANR). In an interview with Meduza, this former creator of the "Left Wing" political formation, the only member of the Russian Duma to have voted against the annexation of Crimea in 2014, affirmed that the ANR had already been at work in recent months and had informed him before the attack that they were going to act. A controversial figure even within the Russian opposition (branded as a crook by Alexei Navalny), Ponomarev provocatively believes that Alexander and Darya Duguina were legitimate wartime targets. The ANR remains mysterious, Ponomarev being the sole source of information about it. The very existence of the group and its possible link with the death of Duguina are for the moment unverifiable, some thinking that the ANR could well be the creation of the Russian secret services.

Whatever the true identity of the killer of Darya Dougina, the interest for the Kremlin and its allies in the recovery of a "barbaric crime" (Sergei Lavrov) is evident. In particular to threaten Estonia: the senator Vladimir Dzhabarov advocated tough action against Tallinn if Natalya Vovk's extradition is refused, while Margarita simonyan, director of the Russia Today channel, would send many “professionals” there curious to see the spiers of the churches of the Estonian capital – a cynical allusion to the alibi advanced by the Russian agents who poisoned Sergei and Yulia Skripal in 2018 in Salisbury in England, a city known for the spire of its cathedral.

peter banister

source: LCI

This article is published from Selection of the day.

Picture : Wikimedia Commons

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