A Russian Sickness

Yegor Gaidar, a former Prime Minister of Russia, was rushed to a hospital in Dublin last week. The next morning, he checked out and apparently flew to Moscow, where he checked back into a hospital. According to the Moscow Times, he was still there on Wednesday.

What’s ailing Gaidar? It’s not lead poisoning. It’s probably not polonium poisoning. Beyond that, no one is saying.

Anatoly Chubais, a colleague of Gaidar from the early days of Russia’s transition and now head of the Russian electricity system, told the press that doctors believed the illness might not be natural. The Irish Foreign Ministry, through an anonymous spokesperson (how’s that for conviction!), denied that there was anything suspicious or untoward about the illness.

Strange business indeed. Settling of old scores? Preparation for changes in Russia? Or something natural and coincidental?