Russia Involvement in Chechnya

     No, I haven't read Sixty Years of War in the Caucasus, that was about Tsarist Russia's attempts to conquer the place.

     I have mostly finished the book Towers of Stone, by Jagielski, about the Chechen Wars (I'll publish some great, long quotes from the book later).  It looks to me like Moscow had been stupid when they assassinated Chechen leaders Dudayev and then Mashkadov.

     The first Chechen leader Russia killed, Dzhokhar Dudayev, had been a General in command of a Soviet Bomber Wing. He was no terrorist.  He had been the only Chechen ever to reach the rank of General in the Soviet military.

     The second Chechen leader Russia killed, Aslan Mashkadov, had been an incredibly diligent Soviet Army Colonel. He was no terrorist, although, to be fair, he hardly punished Shamil Basayev for his guerilla tactics.

     Some people might think that my statements somehow excuse today's bombings in Moscow.  Like most people, I believe that there are better people and that there are worse people, and, if you kill off the better people, all you have left to deal with are the worst people.  I'm saying that Russia's tactic, of assassinating Chechen leaders, seems to have backfired. 

     It's tragic that dozens of people died in Moscow.  Far more than 100,000 people die each day, but most of this is due to accident or disease, not because of a stupid war.

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