Russian weapons dealer Viktor Bout to be extradited to US

Douglas Farah

Bout not only supplied the Taliban and the FARC in Colombia, both designated terrorist organizations. He also helped arm some of the most murderous regimes and groups in Africa (Charles Taylor, Mubut Sese Seko the RUF, UNITA etc.) and the genocidal regime in Sudan. These actions are detailed in my book, with Stephen Braun, Merchant of Death: Money, Guns, Planes and the Man Who Makes War Possible

Bout will be extradited from Thailand after heavy US pressure. He has ties to Russian intelligence and that country is trying to block the extradition. Bout is an amoral thug willing to sell weapons to anyone and is a very big fish indeed.

[His arrest and extradition occurred] “only because an unusually dedicated, small group of men and women, stretching from the end of the Clinton administration to the Bush and Obama teams, made it happen.”

The DEA, NSC, State Department, intelligence community and Pentagon all have members in that tenacious group that simply refused to let the matter go. A tip of the hat to that cadre, many whom I have had the privilege of knowing, for the commitment it took to make this day happen. It took more than a decade, but in the end it seems one of the really bad actors on the international stage, responsible for escalating the carnage in wars the world over, will finally stand trial thanks to your efforts.