When Bill O’Reilly asked President Trump about Vladimir Putin and “killing” that led to Russian government demands for an apology by the journalist and Fox News, the question addressed serious issues that have haunted Russian president vladimir putin since he began his climb to the Kremlin. For this reason President Trump’s reply about Americans also being killers caused discomfort, criticism and consternation on both sides of the political fence beginning with Vice President Mike Pence.

KGB Academy Graduate

Any discussion regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin must always address one simple and uncomfortable fact; he was a graduate of the KGB Academy and worked in intelligence for decades before deciding to enter politics.

The KGB’s political masters would have expected unswerving and unquestioning obedience from Agent Putin and his rise through the ranks is clear proof that he successfully carried out all the instructions given him.

Russian politics has always been deadly and not only in recent times. The Tsarist Russian police was adept at manipulating information and punishing severely all opponents to the Empire and this tradition continued after the October Revolution in 1917. When the Lenin and the Communist Party took power the Cheka was created and over time this became the NKVD and then the KGB. These agencies became even more deadly during the Stalinist period and were responsible for the famous assassination of Leon Trotsky in Mexico in 1940.

Many famous victims

These lessons would have been learnt by Putin, but they are also remembered in the West and so when prominent Russian politicians, journalists and dissidents began to be killed in recent years suspicions were directed immediately towards the Russian President. These suspicions, despite official Russian denials, have never been completely dispelled inside or outside Russia.

Over the years the list of names of victims of alleged Russian secret service activities have included Sergei Yushenkov, Yuri Shchekochikhin, Mikhail Trepashkin, Nikolai Girenko, MIkhail Khodorkovsky, Paul Klebnikov, Anna Politkovskaya, Alexander Litvinenko, Stanslav Markelov and Natalia Esterimova. This list is not complete, but gives a definite indication of the deadliness of Rusisan Politics.

Vladimir Putin has always denied being involved in these incidents, but the sheer numbers show that O’Reilly’s question to President #Donald Trump was not based on vague notions, but on disquieting reality. Donald Trump would do well to remember this History because the man he will be facing across the table in the near future is not a simple businessman, but a man who has survived a political system that had little pity for its citizens and even less so for foreign powers.

The United States and Russia are the world’s two biggest superpowers and rivals for many decades, a rivalry that has involved wars and other conflicts. This rivalry will continue well into the future and America’s Presidents must always bear in mind that the limits on the activities of American leaders are much tighter than those that control the Russian leadership. This difference is literally deadly.