Monday, September 05, 2022

Paranoia and Life Imitating Art

 Cindy and I are binging on “The Americans” currently streaming on Hulu.  We’re on season 5 and loving the show.  It’s set in the 1980’s, the Reagan years, and a man and a woman from the Soviet Union, posing as a middle class married couple with two children, are spying on the United States.

Now, with this kind of setup, you’d think you’d hate the characters.  After all, they kidnap, steal, lie, cheat, and murder to achieve the goals of their handlers.  Even worse…they have sex with other people to get information.  Well, maybe that’s not worse than murder, but it can still be jarring.

So, you'd think the characters are completely unlikable.  But much like Walter White and the Sopranos, you can empathize with them...most of the time. 

So, why am I even telling you this?  Writers are keen observers.  At least, that’s what we tell ourselves.  I’m always on the lookout for art imitating life or vice versa.

A CNBC headline this week stated, “Lukoil Chairman Ravil Maganov is the 8th Russian energy executive to die suddenly this year.”

The story goes on to describe how Mr. Maganov, chairman of the Russian oil giant Lukoil and outspoken critic of Russia’s role in the war in the Ukraine, died after falling or of the window of Moscow’s Central Clinical Hospital. 

Lukoil, the company Maganov helped to build, issued a press release that said the chairman “passed away following a serious illness.” 

Maybe that illness was called Gravity. 

Since the beginning of the year, seven other Russian energy executives have died by suicide or in murder/suicide events that included their immediate family.  One in particular, Alexander Subbotin, TASS reported that his body was found in his basement in a room used for “Jamaican voodoo rituals”.  The others were deaths by hanging or gunshots and not all were in Russia. One executive was found dead along with his wife and daughter in their vacation home in Spain. 

The retirement plan for Russian oil execs is brutal and deadly.

Watching “The Americans” has made me paranoid as hell.  It’s not bad enough that the FBI has found Top Secret files in a previous president’s country club estate, but dozens of those folders marked Top Secret were found empty.

Does that mean they’re still missing?  Who has them?

On August 28th, this headline appeared in, “FBI is investigating a Ukrainian woman who posed as a Rothschild heiress and wandered about Mar-a-Lago with Trump.”

The story goes on to say, “A Ukrainian woman who posed as a member of the Rothschild banking family is under federal investigation after she infiltrated Mar-a-Lago multiple times and mingled with former President Donald Trump, a report says.”

“Ukrainian-born Inna Yashchyshyn used the name of Anna de Rothschild and claimed numerous business ventures as she rubbed shoulders with high-profile Trump guests. On several occasions in 2021 and 2022, Yashchyshyn mixed with Trumpworld heavyweights such as Sen. Lindsey Graham, Kimberley Guilfoyle, former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, and Trump donor Richard Kofoed, the outlets reported. She was also photographed with Trump on his golf course, they reported.”

This is exactly the kind of shenanigans the Russian spies in “The Americans” pull.  

So, am I being paranoid?  In the words of one my recurring characters in the Geneva Chase series, “You can’t be too paranoid.”

1 comment:

Donis Casey said...