Bout likens his trial to Kafka’s works in diary

Viktor Bout (Thailand out AFP Photo / Nicolas Asfouri)
Russian businessman Viktor Bout has likened the way the US court handled his case with Kafka’s book The Process and also with the all-out attack on Libya.

The Russian daily Komsomolskaya Pravda on Wednesday published extracts from the diary of Viktor Bout – the Russian businessman who specialized in air cargo transport and who is now awaiting sentencing in the USA after the jury found him guilty of conspiracy to kill US citizens.

“In Kafka’s novel The Trial, there is a description of a very strange situation. The main character is arrested without telling him why, the trial starts in which the suspect cannot understand who tries him and for what, until he is finally killed in execution of the ‘sentence’. The state of the main character is currently the best way to describe my current state,” Bout writes.

The businessman said that just as in Kafka’s novel, his own trial lacked any substantial evidence whatsoever. “Naturally, it is in Kafka’s spirit – no proof of what, when, or where I have done wrong. This is not important for the UN – the important thing is that the Security Council passes a resolution (and Russia voted for this in the SC!) and then it makes no difference if they ‘kill’ Bout or bomb Libya. The UN has turned into a feeding trough for an international gang of bureaucrats who have a paid vacation every 30 or 40 days and with flourishing corruption in all missions (newspapers reported that the UN was selling arms in conflict zones).”

Bout also stressed that he was tried for thoughts that are impossible to prove, rather than for concrete actions. He severely criticized the fact that instead of presenting evidence, the US court concentrated on persuading the jury and on building a negative image of the defendant. Moreover, Bout also mentioned in his diary the violations of Thai law that US officials managed to hush up.

Above all, the businessman blasted the very essence of the charges. “Another thing is worthy of Kafka – the point in the theory that all co-conspirators’ statements automatically become my statements! This is like heaven for prosecutors – if just one person agrees to co-operate, all his statements are like pure honey…” Bout writes. He also said that the experts’ reports mentioned nearly all operators who worked in the Shardja airport cargo terminal and by simple generalization their actions were attributed to Bout regardless of the fact that he had no connection with the named companies.

“More than that – the presumption of innocence UN-style means that I myself must prove my innocence in order to be dropped from the list of appointed enemies of humanity,” the Russian businessman writes.

Bout also accused law enforcers of “stealing his past,” saying that the press did everything to connect him with the character of the Lord of War movie – a work of fiction that has no relation to the real Viktor Bout. He said that even the DEA investigators had admitted their sole source of information was a book, The Merchant of Death, by Stephen Braun and Douglas Farah – a former DEA official and a US congress expert. “How is it different from the Inquisition of the Middle Ages? Only by the fact that they have Internet and aircraft,” the Russian businessman concluded.

“Kafka’s Trial makes us all wake up and think what the State and society actually are so that we ourselves do not get arrested one fine morning. Bout’s trial must be a fire alarm to wake us up before we all get enslaved simply for having dignity and our own thoughts about the world,” Viktor Bout writes.