Russia, Napoleon, Horrendous Murder and Putin’s Russia

  • Oleg Sokolov taught in the Sorbonne.
  • Physically abusing your spouse and children does not lead to arrest or carry a jail term and is supported by current Orthodox Church leaders.
  • Russia will continue to have such incidents and many will go unreported due to domestic violence being decriminalized.

On November 7, professor Oleg Sokolov murdered his live-in girlfriend Anastasia Yeshchenko in St. Petersburg. She was only 24 years old. Sokolov is a Russian historian of the Napoleonic era. He is a Candidate of Historical Sciences and was a Docent of the Department of Modern History, and Faculty of History of Saint Petersburg State University. His scientific and social activities were acknowledged by the Legion of Honour in 2003 by French President Jacques Chirac. The Legion of Honour is the highest French order of merit for military and civil merits, established in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte and retained by all later French governments and régimes.

Sokolov was one of the top 10 historians pertaining to the Napoleonic era. His girlfriend was one of his former students and one of the most promising Russian historians. He specialized in battlefield reconstruction and was famous for hosting Napoleon themed soirees. Sokolov also taught at the world famous Sorbonne university and one of his books “Three Emperors” was highly praised in Russia. The Sorbonne is a building in the Latin Quarter of Paris, which, from 1253 on, housed the College of Sorbonne, part of one of the first universities in the world, later renamed the University of Paris and commonly known as “the Sorbonne.”

After murdering his girlfriend, Sokolov hosted a dinner party the following day, with the corpse still in his flat. Saturday, he started cutting up the body pieces and tried to dump parts in the Moyka river in St. Petersburg. He was caught when he nearly drowned while disposing of the parts and was detained by the St. Petersburg police.

In Russia, it is not punishable by law or by firing to have a relationship with a student. Sokolov had a criminal complaint against him in 2008 for choking his mistress, but nothing was done in Russia. This is the gruesome outcome of inaction, resulting in the murder of Yeshchenko.

The weapon used was a TOZ-17, a rifle from the family of .22 Long Rifle bolt-action cadet rifles manufactured by the Tula Arms Plant (Russian abbreviation TOZ stands for Tulsky Oruzheyny Zavod). Most notably the TOZ-17 was used to train generations of Russian military, paramilitary and police cadets.

Anastasia Yeshchenko.

Anastasia Yeschenko comes from a prominent Russian family. Her mother holds a podpolkovnik rank (a military rank in Slavic countries which corresponds to lieutenant colonel) in the MVD, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. Emperor Alexander I of Russia founded its predecessor in 1802 in Imperial Russia. The Ministry has its headquarters in Moscow. Anastasia held a masters degree in history and was in the process of obtaining her PhD for research closely intertwined with Oleg Sokolov. Her father is a known soccer coach in Russia.

Unfortunately, this is Putin’s Russia. In 2016, domestic violence decriminalization was proposed and took effect in February, 2017 with the support of the Russian Orthodox Church. Hence, physically abusing your spouse and children does not lead to arrest or carry a jail term and is supported by current Orthodox Church leaders. Basically, a woman seeking guidance from the father in church would be told she has to endure domestic abuse.  Needless to say, western civilized societies have not imposed any sanctions or embargo on Russia for this. The only time Russia received any type of sanctions was related to their annexation of Crimea.

During his arraignment on November 11, Oleg Sokolov was grim and burst into tears. He called his late girlfriend a monster and was remanded into custody for two months until the next hearing.

Sadly, Russia will continue to have such incidents and many will go unreported due to domestic violence being decriminalized. However, domestic violence continues to be a pressing issue and women will continue being victimized.

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Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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