Wednesday, August 1, 2018


When Putin singled out Americans he’d like to have sent to Russia for interrogation, a lot of attention was focused on former US Ambassador Michael McFaul. He also mentioned others, including very prominent international businessman, Bill Browder. More significantly, Putin talked about the Magnitsky Act, which Browder birthed with the help of the United States Congress.

We often throw terms around today in our political and geopolitical debate like capitalist and community and oligarch, but very few who use these terms really understand the essence of what they mean. One of those that does understand is Bill Browder. He rebelled against communism as a teenager, became a very successful capitalist, and made millions in Putin’s Russia. What he didn’t know was just what kind of price he would pay for getting involved in the ever-entangled web of Putin, oligarchs, and a system 180 degrees from our own, a system of men and not of laws.

The ultimate result was the brutal death of Browder’s lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky. Browder has since carried on Magnitsky’s legacy at great personal risk to himself. Putin’s remarks underscore that Bill Browder’s ongoing quest for justice for the murder of Sergei Magnitsky has taken a dark turn under the presidency of Donald Trump.

My WhoWhatWhy conversation with Bill Browder: