Stalin’s Legacy: Ethnic Time Bombs That Continue To Tick

File Photo of Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin

(RFE/RL -– rferl.org – Robert Coalson – March 1, 2013) Eighty-one-year-old Nikolai Khasig was born in Sukhumi in 1932. It was just one year after Soviet dictator Josef Stalin stripped Abkhazia of its short-lived status as a full-fledged republic of the USSR and made it a region of Soviet Georgia. At the end of 1936, Lavrenty Beria — at that […]

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Russia in the Caucasus

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(International Relations and Security Network (ISN) – www.isn.ethz.ch – Aglaya Snetkov for the ISN – February 25, 2013) Aglaya Snetkov is a senior researcher at the Center for Security Studies (CSS). Despite the attempts by Western powers to penetrate the Caucasus, Russia continues to exert unmatched influence over the region. In today’s Questions and Answers presentation, the CSS’ Aglaya Snetkov […]

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Will Moscow’s Use of ‘Soft Power’ in the North Caucasus Improve the Situation or Lead to that Region’s Islamization?

Map of Caucasus and Central Asia

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, January 28, 2013 – http://windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2013/01/window-on-eurasia-will-moscows-use-of.html) Moscow’s new effort to use “soft power” in the North Caucasus instead of the “hard power” it has used in the past may reduce the number of young people joining the militants and thus buy the center some time — but only at the price of opening […]

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Daghestani Brothers Struggle To Bridge Religious, Political Divides

Map of Dagestan, Georgia and Environs

(RFE/RL – Uma Isakova – Nov. 28, 2012) An uneasy peace holds between Ruslan and Rustam Shapiyev in the Daghestani village of Komsomolskoye. Younger brother Rustam, who has taken the name Abubakar, says he loves and respects his older brother, who has adopted the name Magomed. “Of course, a brother is a brother. We are obligated to maintain kinship ties,” […]

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NEWSLINK: The Caucasus Emirate Goes Global

Chechen Militants file photo

(The Caucasus Emirate Goes Global – Stratfor.com – Gordon Hahn – Dr. Gordon M. Hahn is Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C. – www.stratfor.com/other-voices/caucasus-emirate-goes-global) Gordon Hahn writes on the influences of international Islamic terrorism upon unrest in the Caucasus: For a decade almost all observers ignored, downplayed, and obfuscated an ugly truth about […]

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Daghestan Becomes Hotbed Of North Caucasus Insurgency

Map of Dagestan, Georgia and Environs

(RFE/RL – Tom Balmforth – November 05, 2012) MOSCOW — Suicide bombings in police stations. Muslim clerics gunned down in broad daylight. Shoot-outs between insurgents and security forces. These have become run-of-the-mill headlines in Russia’s troubled North Caucasus region of Daghestan. Last week, unidentified gunmen shot dead an imam and two of his male relatives as they drove to morning […]

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Foreign Ministry Accuses USAID of Meddling in Politics

Russian Foreign Ministry Building Tower file photo

By Nikolaus von Twickel –  Moscow Times –  September 20, 2012 Moscow’s abrupt decision to kick out the U.S. Agency for International Development raised new worries Wednesday about a widening crackdown on pro-democracy groups. The Foreign Ministry bluntly accused the agency, better known as USAID, of meddling in domestic politics. Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said Wednesday that the agency had […]

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