Putin’s henchmen are sloppy because they can afford to be. Just like their boss, they don’t fear any repercussions. Putin could kick out all the foreign media in Russia and reduce the risks of any further exposure, but he simply doesn’t see the need. He got caught again, but so what? In 2006, former Russian Federal Security Service officer Alexander Litvinenko was murdered with a radioactive poison in central London and the UK government buried the investigation for years. In 2015, prominent Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was shot dead near Red Square, one of the most heavily surveilled areas in Russia, yet the cover-up of a trial of his murderers failed to present any video evidence. In 2018, Russian agents used the same Novichok toxin used on Navalny to poison targets in England, and another target was gunned down in Berlin. Nevertheless, Germany is still moving ahead with the big Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project that is so dear to Putin.
Meanwhile, the Trump administration is sending a clear message to all despots as it considers granting legal immunity for Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, who ordered the gruesome killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, according to the CIA. I strongly recommend watching The Dissident, the powerful new documentary about Khashoggi’s murder, and then questioning how any official from the free world can in good conscience sit down with bin Salman.