Russia: May 21, 2004


The violence in Chechnya continues, with several deaths each day. The Russians have allowed "friendly" Chechens to form their own warlord armies. Russian troops insist that, at night, all the armed Chechens are against them. But Russia controls all the province by day, and most of it by night. Most Chechens are fed up with the violence, which is what the Russians have been waiting for. In the last two centuries, the Russians have found that the only way to deal with the violent and rampaging (outside of Chechnya) Chechens is to fight them until most Chechens agree to quiet down. That lasts for a generation or so, and then the cycle begins again. The Chechens seem to feel it is their natural right to prey on their neighbors. Over the centuries, the neighbors have increasingly called on their powerful Russian neighbor to protect them Chechen gangs. The current violence is yet another cycle of that ancient pattern.


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