H C Singh

Russia and Chechnya

In 1991 when USSR collapsed in its place Russian Federation came into existence. Independence to many republics was recognized. Many such republics had Muslim majority. But Chechnya, Muslim republic, whose Muslim neighboring republics like Azerbaijan, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan etc were given independence, was not granted Independence. Accordingly Chechnya started fighting for independence right from 1991 and in 1996, Russian Army was deployed.

In 1999 Russia sent 90,000 troops, who mercilessly killed 30,000 to 40,000 Chechen Civilians and rebels. This mass killing of Chechens by Russian Army led to suicide bombing as Chechnya, which had only one million populations could not fight with well trained Russian Army of a million or so. From year 2000 to the latest suicide bombings of Moscow metro etc in March-April 2010 there had been 42 separate cases of suicide bombing by 63 Chechens who killed themselves. Of the total suicide bombers 40 percent were women, who had lost their fathers, brothers or sons and felt that they have no purpose to live but take revenge and die.

Why is Russia arrogant and even cruel to Chechens? Why did not Russia grant independence to Chechnya in 1991 itself when it granted and recognized independence of all the Muslim Majority States of erstwhile USSR?

If Russian Federation continues to suppress by force independence movement of Chechnya killing thousands of innocent civilians along with rebels, it is likely to raise hue and cry in other Muslim countries around Chechnya. It may even lead to a situation similar to that of Talibans and other militants in Afghanistan and in Pakistan’s NWFP and Baluchistan which has been continuing for more than a decade, despite US bombing by Drone planes which killed hundreds of Talibans. It is high time that Russian Federation considers seriously of negotiating with Chechen rebel leaders and come to an end to this strife and eliminate the chances of suicide bombing.

Today Russia happens to be the biggest country in the world in area, spreading from Europe in West to close to Japan in the East, covering entire Siberia. Literacy of present day Russia is almost 100%, the per capita GDP 14,700 equivalent to US dollars. Thus Russia need not be adamant in keeping almost the smallest state of Russian Federation within Russian Federation and create untold miseries to Chechens and annoying the Muslims of adjoining Muslim independent states. Equally untold and unlimited miseries to Russians through suicide bombing by so called “Black Widows” of Chechnya causing death and injury to unlimited number of innocent Russians, going in Metros or other transport to their duty or work. Just as after the Second World War Russia (then USSR) in due course vacated East Berlin, East Germany and most of Eastern Europe, particularly Hungary, after prolonged fight, Russia should grant complete independence to Chechnya.

April 9, 2010 - Posted by | Muslims, Political Commentary, USSR, World, World History | , , , ,

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