I would love to hear him speak. What a story he has to tell.
Not that I’d understand much of it. I assume it would be in Russian. Above is a picture of Mikhail Khodorkovsky giving a public lecture on ‘Rights and freedoms’ at the National Technical University of Ukraine in Kiev, Monday, March 10th.
He was only just released from prison in December. He served a decade for tax evasion/ rubbing Mr. Putin the wrong way. The video of the two verbally going back and forth is fascinating. It’s also haunting as you know what happened not long later. As he stood before judge after judge, you saw the once richest man in Russia become an essay writing prisoner.
I remember the day he was released. The timing so close to the Olympics. Regardless, I was so glad for him. I want to read more of what he has to say. He came into his wealth at such a young age. He changed his moves with the fluctuating economy and made truly brilliant decisions.
In his speech yesterday he obviously spoke in support of those Ukrainians who are resisting Russian occupation. He also urged the West for assistance. Interesting to hear him make his first anti-Russian / anti-Putin regime comments.
Right now Khodorkovsky is top of mind for me. I’m in the middle of the book The Oligarchs. It details the rise of men like Khodorkovsky who, when the Soviet Union fell, were at the right place at the right time and made fortunes. Money that couldn’t have been imagined just years prior. The way they manipulated the turmoil and changing economy is simply fascinating. Many of them later ended up on the wrong side of the government. The book is a bit dated. It was written in 2001, but the history of this peculiar time is a great read.
The article I linked above says, “Following his release from prison, Khodorkovsky said he is not interested in politics and will devote himself to helping Russia develop civil society. Khodorkovsky plans to apply for permanent residency in Switzerland.” He has or at least had a grown son in New York.