Abramovich shouldn’t get a local pass

Shortly after the Russians invaded Ukraine, I wrote to The Aspen Times about Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich’s Aspen dealings (“A Disturbing Local Connection to Putin,” Letters, March 4 ).

Since then, the deep and broad associations between Mr. Abramovich and Mr. Putin have been exposed in numerous publications and broadcasts. Its association with Israel and the Lubavitch movement has also been clearly established. His generous support of Jewish causes is appreciated, but sadly this charity – which is called Tzedakah in Jewish tradition – cannot erase the horrific record of complicity in the attack on Ukraine and its support for Vladimir Putin.

I am a physician and an ordained conservative rabbi. I have been a Zionist all my life and have been a visiting professor of medicine in Israel. I mourn for the people of Ukraine and am humbled by the support of this wealthy, self-centered Russian Jewish oligarch by certain sectors of the Israeli and American Jewish communities. Thanks to pressure recognized by both the United States and Israel, this man has not yet been punished and his properties in Aspen remain unchallenged.

Recently, CNN revealed that Abramovich is a major shareholder in EVRAZ Steel, formerly CFI Steel in Pueblo. He reportedly earned $522 million in dividends from EVRAZ last year.

Of course, the management of EVRAZ says that we have no connection with Russia. Our office is in Chicago. There is no doubt that the Chicago office is in the Cayman Islands or five other similar locations, so the money is nowhere to be found. Did EVRAZ and Abramovich supply steel to Pueblo, Colorado, to Putin for the rape of Ukraine? It’s a tangled web but it’s known to supply steel to the Russian military. Maybe, just maybe, it’s done here.

Do we want to support institutions in Aspen?

Dr. Daniel Thau Teitelbaum

Snowmass Village and Denver

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