The Chechen Struggle Independence Won and Lost by Ilyas Akhmadov, Miriam Lanskoy (auth.)

By Ilyas Akhmadov, Miriam Lanskoy (auth.)

Told from the viewpoint of its former overseas minister, this can be a uniquely candid account of Chechnya's fight for independence and its wars opposed to Russia with a view to revise our figuring out of the clash and clarify the way it maintains. beneficial properties new insights, intimate photographs of key personalities and a foreword by means of Zbigniew Brzezinski.

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Additional info for The Chechen Struggle Independence Won and Lost

Sample text

This is very tricky because there is no way to know in advance when a vehicle might explode—it might take a second or it could take half an hour. Lots of Chechen fighters died going into APCs in search of weapons. On the Russian side, there were at least 20,000 men and we counted 300 vehicles that we destroyed in the first few days. On our side there were only 1,000 to 1,500 experienced fighters; the rest were inexperienced, poorly armed, poorly equipped, and totally uncoordinated. Yet we held up the advance for a week, and held on to parts of Grozny for seven weeks.

Yet we held up the advance for a week, and held on to parts of Grozny for seven weeks. How was this possible? For one reason only: we attacked. This was the spontaneous activity of amateur volunteers who ran into—not away from—explosions. I do not think this is something exclusively Chechen, although of course we were all reared on Chechen ideals of courage and subscribed to the Soviet cult of heroism from World War II. But I think there was something more fundamental involved. Numerous memoirs about the start of wars contain something similar, for instance the enthusiasm with which young men joined the American Civil War, or the romance of Europeans marching into World War I.

He would, unofficially, wave a gun in someone’s face and this was immensely useful to Aslan. Relations with the civilian population were very painful. I experienced this myself when I was asked to carry out Dudayev’s order to expropriate cars for the war effort. Taking cars away from private individuals was one of the worst things I had to do during the two years of the war. Dudayev ordered the population to turn over vehicles that had belonged to the government but were privatized in the early 1990s.

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