EDITORIAL: The Beast of Chechnya

Я – реальный представитель Кремля. Я – полностью человек Владимира Путина. Я никогда не предам Путина, никогда не подведу его. Клянусь Всевышним: я скорее 20 раз умру. Я – мужчина и уважаю Путина как мужественного человека, как настоящего мужчину, мудрого политика. А вот если направить ещё какого-то спецпредставителя на Кавказ, то ситуация станет лучше?

I am the Kremlin’s official representative in Chechnya.  I am fully Vladimir Putin’s man. I will never betray Putin, never fail him. I swear to God that I would sooner die twenty ttimes than do either. I  respect Mr. Putin as a courageous man, as a real man, a wise policymaker.

— Ramzan Kadyrov to the Russian publication Versiya, January 11, 2010.

You can judge a man’s character by the company he keeps. In this case, it’s hard to know which man is tarnished more by association with the other.  Suffice it to say that they are birds of a slim-covered feather.

Kadyrov was responding to the question of whether Putin should appoint a Caucasus Czar to take charge of the entire region, which the interviewer suggested was like a “communal apartment” with “constant squabbles and conflicts.”  Kadyrov said he couldn’t see how that would improve anything, and that Putin couldn’t have a more loyal servant in Chechnya than himself.

When Kadyrov himself is being openly confronted with the possibility of sweeping reform in the region, you know that the Kremlin is getting desperate.  It’s very clear now that far from solving the problem of Chechnya, the Kremlin has instead caused it so spread throughout the entire Caucasus region.  The situation, involving daily murders of high-ranking government officials and police, has become so horrific that Kadyrov feels the need to reassure the Kremlin of his loyalty and fidelity.  In fact, he openly refers to himself as the Kremlin’s faithful slave.

He protests too much.  If Kadyrov really were under the Kremlin’s thumb, there would be no need for him to give reassurances.  In fact, Russia lost Chechnya long ago, and now between that precedent and the separation of Ossetia from Georgia, the entire Caucasus region is in flames.  Putin has failed to managed the Caucasus just as he has failed to manage the economy.  Instead, he has only managed to take giant steps toward crushing civil society and preventing anyone from complaining about his policy failures.

If Russia continues down this road, it will go the way of the USSR.

13 responses to “EDITORIAL: The Beast of Chechnya

  1. More than 230 Interior Ministry police officers and interior troops died in Russia’s volatile North Caucasus in 2009, the ministry’s deputy chief said.

    http://www.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=212347

    (Actually many more, and of course also many from the FSB and Army.)

  2. Wonder which if any of Russia’s major TV networks will report that fact.

    • The newest officially confirmed police deaths:

      NAZRAN, January 15 (Itar-Tass) — Two policeman died and one was injured on the Caucasus federal highway near Gazi-Yurt in the Nazran district of Ingushetia at 7:10 p.m. Moscow time on Friday, as their car came under
      gunfire.

      http://itar-tass.com/eng/level2.html?NewsID=14723675&PageNum=0

      This highway is regularly a scene of gun ambushes. It is also where Estemirova was executed:

      It was 8.30am. Her kidnappers headed in the direction of Ingushetia, Chechnya’s neighbouring republic. Probably, they took the M-29 highway, though there is also a grassy back-route looping along a hillside. The road is a scenic one: it cuts though a dark tunnel of poplar trees; on the roadside women sell melons from the backs of trucks. The kidnappers breezed through several checkpoints.

      Two hours later, Estemirova was dead. The men stopped their vehicle soon after crossing into Ingushetia. Up ahead, a group of Islamist militants had ambushed a government car, opening fire. Estemirova’s kidnappers may at this point have panicked. They marched her, hands tied, off the road. And then they shot her five times in the head and chest – leaving behind her money, passport and ID card.

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jul/23/chechnya-natalia-estemirova

  3. I hope many americans will DIE in Iraq and Afganistan….. let’m rest in HELL!

  4. sascha_hero Germany

    in the next years many russian pigs will die in the Caucasus and elsewhere,you dirty criminal FSB-rat

  5. There is one last line in Kadyrov’s Russian quote; I can’t quite figure it out. Something about “if he appoints another person special representative to the Caucasus, would it be any better?”

    Well, Ramzanbek, now you will find out. Dmitry Anatolich has appointed a Kremlin crony from someplace far far away to be the point man for the new North Caucasus Federal District.

    vot eto da!

  6. Also surge (and they already have hundreds of thousands troops there):

    Kremlin Picks Outsider As New Caucasus Overlord

    January 19, 2010

    MOSCOW (Reuters) — The Kremlin sought to tighten its grip of the volatile North Caucasus today by grouping the most violent provinces
    together in a new federal district and appointing an outsider to oversee it.

    http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/LDE60I1XH.htm

    Exiled Chechen rebel leader Akhmed Zakayev said last November that the Kremlin would create the new district before greatly boosting troop numbers in the region, a charge on which the North Caucasus regional military has declined to comment.

  7. And will the new Viceroy of the Caucasus, Mr Khloponin, also be responsible for Abkhazia and South Ossetia? Oh, I forgot, they are sovereign states. How thoughtless of me…

  8. Here’s a new Caucasus Viceroy in all his glory.
    Warning to those sensitive to hearing russian curses!!!! Oy, vey… and these are people who are supposed to be the “best” in Medvedev’s list of cadres.

  9. хрен!

    I am certain that Russia Today will provide thorough, objective, and unbiased coverage of the situation in the North Caucasus.

  10. Just a few months ago, Ramzan Kadyrov’s position as Chechen Republic head appeared unassailable. He was even named in December as a possible candidate for the post of federal official responsible for the entire North Caucasus. But since the start of the year, he has incurred veiled criticism from both Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. In addition, he has been the subject of damaging allegations from media outlets both in Russia and abroad.

    http://www.rferl.org/content/Is_Ramzan_Kadyrovs_Star_On_The_Wane/1945572.html

    Khloponin’s appointment coincided with a series of further incidents or allegations that reflect poorly on Kadyrov. The first was the appearance of a website, http://www.kadyrov2012.com, calling for his nomination as a candidate to succeed Medvedev when the latter’s presidential term expires in 2012. Kadyrov condemned that initiative as “ideological sabotage.”

    Then on January 26, Reuters carried an interview with Vakha Umarov, whose brother Doku is overall commander of the North Caucasus resistance. In that interview, Vakha Umarov claims that some senior members of the Chechen Republic secretly channel funds to the insurgency as insurance in the event that the latter succeeds in overthrowing Chechnya’s secular government. Predictably, Kadyrov rejected that claim; but Medvedev subsequently again stressed the need to monitor more scrupulously the use by North Caucasus leaders of federal funds.

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