Module 6. Discussion Board.

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For Discussion Forum 6, please address any of the questions below. As always: you are required to make a minimum of THREE (3) posts per module. At least one of your three posts should be your own original comment; at least one – should be a response to or comment on something another classmate has posted; the third post can be either your own original post or a comment on a classmate’s post. Keep in mind that your response should NOT simply be a summary of the assigned reading. A higher grade will be awarded to posts that demonstrate student’s ability to provide an original interpretation of the topic while also applying relevant concepts, issues, and theories covered in the module.

1. Read the article from The Guardian titled "St.Petersburg residents reject bridge honoring former Chechen leader. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site." discussing an unusual controversy that just recently unfolded in my hometown of St.Petersburg. Based on the information of this module (and any other information you've learned in this class), provide your own insight and expert analysis of the situation as a cultural anthropologist of contemporary Russia. What are the roots of the issue discussed in the article? How do you think citizens of your country / home town would have reacted if they had to deal with a situation equivalent to the one described?

2. While discussing Anna Politkovskaya's stories from Chechnya, Prof. Georgi Derluguian writes that Politkovskaya "does not romanticize the Chechen guerrillas and barely refers to their purported struggle for national independence. Her sympathy is with the civilians, the medical personnel and especially the women..." (p.24). Based on the two samples of Politkovskaya's prose (and another one of her essays that you can hear in the documentary 211:Anna), agree or disagree with Prof. Derluguian's statement. Did you find Politkovskaia's prose effective in delivering the message of the brutality and horrific impact on individual lives on both ends of this war? (Russia and Chechnya).

3. Discuss the unique and perhaps somewhat paradoxical position of Chechnya within the Russian Federation, especially today, during Vladimir Putin's third presidential term. What is your take on the "Chechenization" debate discussed in the "Prisoners of the Caucasus" article (esp. pp. 29 - 30)? How does the documentary Chechnya. War Without a Trace contribute to your opinion on this debate?

4. What is your opinion in the debate of Chechen's secession? As you read in this module, some critics argue that the Chechens had good moral grounds for claiming independence in November 1991; others content that Boris Yeltsin had solid reasons, defensible in legal terms, for defending Russia's territorial integrity. Some also argue that even if Moscow had granted Chechnya independence, this would not have created peace and stability. Make sure to support your arguments with facts that you have learned.

5. Read Maria Lipman's essay Freedom of Expression without Freedom of the Press that discusses the general apathy and cynicism of today's Russians. As an example Lipman quotes statistics that only 6% of Russians were aware of any of the writings of the assassinated anti-establishment journalist, Anna Politkovskaia. From what you know (through the course readings and viewings), how can you explain the public indifference of the Russian population? Are you at all surprised that a vast majority of Russians don't even know the names of human rights activists, such as Natalia Estremova, Stanislav Markelov, or Anastasia Baburova, killed over the past decade?

6. An interesting topic that seems to surface from several documentaries we have seen so far is the attempt of today's Russian state to unite the country through a "manufactured" view of the world (this, of course, ties into the famous 1988 book Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of Mass Media by Noah Chomsky and Edward Herman, who argue that mass media in the U.S. is a powerful ideological tool that defends economic, political and social agendas of the "dominant elite."). First, discuss specific examples of this argument in the Chechnya. War Without a Trace documentary. Second, discuss whether media in any country (including the U.S.) creates such a "manufactured view of the world" based on the country's current cultural, socio-economic and political values.

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Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Politkovskaya, Anna. A Small Corner of Hell : Dispatches from Chechnya. Chicago, US: University of Chicago Press, 2008. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 16 October 2016. Copyright © 2008. University of Chicago Press. All rights reserved. Lecture  Notes   Module  6.   Russia  at  War.  Chechnya  and  Beyond   Iowa State University Fast Facts • Population: Approximately 1 million • 7,720 square miles (about size of New Jersey) • Clan-type groups with influential elders • Capital: Grozny • Natural resources: Oil (and large oil refineries) Fast facts continued • Major languages: – Chechen: Caucasian language; indigenous to the area; not spoken anywhere else in the world; one of the oldest languages on earth – Russian: Slavic language • Major religions: – Islam • introduced in the 17th cent. • Predominantly Sunni muslims (some Sufi brotherhoods) • aggressive revival in the 1990s – Christianity Fast Facts • Status: Republic within Russian Federation – During the Soviet rule: Chechen-Ingush ASSR – 1991 splits into • the Republic of Ingushetia which wanted to remain part of Russia and • the Chechen Republic which sought independence. Discrimination and violence against non-Chechen population Brief Historical Overview • 18th century - the beginning of Russia's open military expansion to the North Caucasus. Under Peter I and then Catherine II the doctrine of colonizing the mountain areas prevalent. • 1859 – Russia incorporated the Caucasus • 1917 – Bolshevik Revolution; Dagestan declares independence from Russia • 1923 – Bolshevik troops occupy Dagestan; by force create the Chechen-Ingush Autonomous Republic (Chechens never willingly accepted Russian rule) • 1944, the Chechens, along with several other ethnic groups, were accused of having collaborated with the Nazis and deported to Siberia. More than half a million Chechens were forcibly sent to Western Siberia. 800.000 Chechens deported; 239.000 people die • Chechens were allowed home in 1957 (under Khrushchev); Republic re-established (many of today’s adult Chechens were born in Siberian exile) 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union • 15 republics all declared independence from the Soviet Union. An independence movement started in Chechnya but was opposed by Boris Yeltsin who argued: – Chechnya had not been an independent entity within the Soviet Union – as the Baltic, Central Asian, and other Caucasian States had – but was a part of the Russian Soviet Federal Socialist Republic and hence did not have a right under the Soviet constitution to secede; – Other ethnic groups inside Russia, such as the Tatars, would join the Chechens and secede from the Russian Federation if they were granted that right; and – Chechnya was at a major chokepoint in the oil-infrastructure of the country and hence would hurt the country's economy and control of oil resources 1994 – 96 First Chechen War Mostly confined to Chechnya. Generally conventional warfare- frontlines, minefields, etc • 1991 Dzhokhar Dudayev elected president of Chechnya. Dudayev declares Chechnya independent. • Boris Yeltsin refuses to recognize Chechen independence, sends troops. Confronted by armed Chechens, troops withdraw. • In 1995 10,000 Russian troops occupy Grozny. Chechens launch major counteroffensive. Unwilling to use maximum force and destroy Grozny to defeat rebels, Russians agree to ceasefire. Yeltsin orders troops withdrawn from Chechnya. Russian military humiliated. 70,000 casualties on all sides. KEEP IN MIND Russia’s fighting its own people on its own territory • 1996 Russia signs a Treaty postponing the question of Chechen independence for 5 years. Second Chechen War 1999 - 2000 Predominantly guerrilla warfare 1999 Terrorist bombs explode in Moscow and other Russian cities. Russian authorities blame Chechen paramilitary commanders; send nearly 100,000 Russian troops into Chechnya. Russians occupy much of Chechnya, pulverize Grozny. 2002 Nord-Ost seige • October 23, 2002 Chechen rebel fighters take 850 hostages at a crowded Moscow theater not far from Kremlin • Russian government attempts to negotiate with the Chechens • On Oct. 26 Russians begin pumping anesthetic gas into the building hoping to put everyone to sleep Your  reading  explains   what  went  wrong  there   During and after the siege • Testing the bodies is forbidden; doctors banned from talking with the press • Death certificates state “preexisting condition” or “terrorist act” • The government clamps down on the media – Local Moscow TV channels taken off air before news cast – NTV barred from airing any interviews • Today still no memorial plaque on the theater Putin’s comments “We achieved the nearly impossible, saving hundreds and hundreds of people. We proved that Russia cannot be forced to its knees. … We could not save everyone. Forgive us.” 130 hostages dead from gas poisoning Putin’s approval ratings hit record high: 83% of Russians are satisfied with his handling of the seige • Between Sept. 1-3, 2004, 32 heavily armed guerrillas seize a school in Beslan, near Chechnya, and hold about 1,100 young schoolchildren, teachers, and parents hostage. At least 335 hostages are dead, including about 156 children, and more than 550 are wounded. Beslan tragedy ✖ Most shocking: state response q Kremlin is paralyzed and unprepared to act q Russian television stations announce that there are only 354 people inside the school q CNN and BBC are the ONLY stations with live coverage of Beslan. Radio Ekho Moskvy reports from what they see on CNN q Russian channels are showing comedy shows, soap operas and discovery channel - type programming. Later: military documentaries about fighting Chechen bandits and Die Hard. q Editor of Izvestia is fired for printing photographs of bloodied children When Putin does speak up, he states: • In general, we need to admit that we did not fully understand the complexity and the dangers of the processes at work in our own country and in the world. In any case, we proved unable to react adequately. We showed ourselves to be weak. And the weak get beaten.” The war in Chechnya was due to “weak leaders of the 1990s” and mistakes “that I would not have made” Source: Peter Baker, Susan Glasser. Kremlin Rising (Potomak Books, 2007) Immediately after Beslan • Pu@n  signed  a  law  that  eliminated  direct  elec@ons   of  governors  to  “promote  unity  of  the  country  and   create  a  single  chain  of  command.”(Outcry  in  the   Western  media  about  non-­‐democra@c  processes).   Appoints  Ramzan  Khadyrov  as  president  of   Chechnya   Russian authorities announced that the war was over in 2006 Prisoners of the Caucasus: Russia's Invisible Civil War Author(s): Charles King and Rajan Menon Source: Foreign Affairs, Vol. 89, No. 4 (July/August 2010), pp. 20-34 Published by: Council on Foreign Relations Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25680977 Accessed: 08-10-2016 00:54 UTC JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org. Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at http://about.jstor.org/terms Council on Foreign Relations is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Foreign Affairs This content downloaded from 129.186.1.55 on Sat, 08 Oct 2016 00:54:55 UTC All use subject to http://about.jstor.org/terms Prisoners of the Caucasus Russia's Invisible Civil War Charles King and Raj an Menon The empty gymnasium of School No. 1 in Beslan is whipped by winds from the plains of North Ossetia, a republic in Russia's North Caucasus region. On September 1, 2004, the first day of classes, masked gunmen entered the elementary school and herded hundreds of children and their teachers onto the indoor basketball court. They held their captives for three days. In the stifling late-summer heat, some children died from dehydration. Many others were killed when a series of homemade bombs exploded, collapsing the roof and igniting a mas sive fire. Today, photographs of the more than 300 victims, including those of smiling girls outfitted in the ornate hair ribbons traditional on the first day of classes, line the walls of a makeshift memorial. The Beslan siege was Russia's most heart-rending episode of carnage during the last two decades. But it was by no means unique. Two years earlier, gunmen interrupted a play at a Moscow theater and took the entire audience hostage; 170 people died when security forces attempted a rescue. A series of suicide bombings in and around Moscow killed Charles King is Professor of International Affairs and Government at Georgetown University. His latest book is Extreme Politics: Nationalism, Violence, and the End of Eastern Europe. Rajan Menon is Monroe J. Rathbone Professor of International Relations at Lehigh University and Anne and Bernard Spitzer Professor of Political Science at the City College of New York/City University of New York. His latest book is The End of Alliances. For an annotated guide to this topic, see "What to Read on Russian Politics" at www.foreignaffairs.com/readinglists/russia. [20] This content downloaded from 129.186.1.55 on Sat, 08 Oct 2016 00:54:55 UTC All use subject to http://about.jstor.org/terms Prisoners of the Caucasus dozens in 2003 and 2004. In the days before Beslan, suicide terrorists brought down two Russian passenger airplanes. In November 2009, a bomb derailed the Nevsky Express, the high-speed train connecting Moscow and St. Petersburg, killing nearly 30 passengers. (Another bomb had derailed the same train in August 2007, although no one was killed.) And then, this past March, a pair of female suicide bombers blew themselves up in the Moscow metro during morning rush hour, killing nearly 40 people. Even this grim tally is incomplete; it does not include the much higher level of violence that regularly occurs in the North Caucasus itself. The Russian government seems to have few creative ideas about how to deal with the turmoil in the region, which has become the epicenter of routine political violence in the country. It has tried to will the conflict into a sort of resolution, with little result. In April 2009, the Kremlin announced the end of the second Chechen war? or, in official parlance, the decadelong "counterterrorist operation"? thereby setting the stage for the withdrawal of the thousands of federal troops that had been dispatched to the republic. The following summer, however, the North Caucasus?where Chechnya is but one of seven multiethnic republics?experienced an upsurge in violence. A wave of assassinations, bombings, and suicide terrorist attacks spread well beyond the old war zone into the neighboring republics of Dagestan, Ingushetia, and Kabardino-Balkaria. Federal and local officials frequently trumpet the capture and killing of the planners of these attacks. Shamil Basayev, the architect of the Beslan siege, was killed in 2006; Said Buryatsky, the alleged mastermind of the 2009 train bombing and trainer of the two female bombers who struck Moscow, was killed in Ingushetia just three weeks before the subway attack. But Russian officials also admit that the situation is getting worse. Earlier this year, Russian Interior Ministry officials announced that "terrorist crime" in the North Caucasus was up by 60 percent in 2009 compared to 2008. The chief prosecutors office for the North Caucasus region noted last fall that 80 percent of all terrorist incidents in Russia take place in this one small slice of land. Moscow has attempted to secure order by adding intelligence agents and beefing up the presence of federal border guards, along with redeploying police from elsewhere in Russia?but to little avail. FOREIGN AF FA IRS- July/August 2010 [21] This content downloaded from 129.186.1.55 on Sat, 08 Oct 2016 00:54:55 UTC All use subject to http://about.jstor.org/terms Charles King and Rajan Menon In October 2009, President Dmitry Medvedev told Russia's Security Council that the North Caucasus remains the country's foremost internal political problem. Confronting the threats to internal security that bubble up from the southern frontier?both real and perceived?has been a constant in Russian history and culture. "Coss ...
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Running head: THE CHENCHEN WAR

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Anna’s Account of the Chechnya War
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THE CHENCHEN WAR

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Anna’s Account of the Chechnya War

I agree with the sentiments of Prof. Georgi Derluguian, that Anna does not seek to
romanticize the Chechen Guerillas but rather tries to bring the perspective of the civilians,
medical workers and the women in particular. First, it is important for us to con...

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