The Chechen Revolution and the Future of Instability in the Caucasus

by Russo, Michael C

Abstract (Summary)
Dzhokhar Dudayev�s Chechen Revolution in 1991 unleashed a series of cascading social and political effects both in the North Caucasus and Russia as a whole. The revolution eventually led to two brutal wars and an escalating terrorism campaign by various insurgent groups. While some analysts over-generalize and attempt to place all the militant groups into a universal construct, the reality is that the Chechen national revolution is one of two revolutions. Both Yeltsin�s and Putin�s Russian states have intervened militarily to put down Chechen separatism but ignored the rebirth of the Islamic Revolution occurring across the entire North Caucasus. Ironically, these wars led the two revolutions to converge under a unified front led by Shamil Basayev. The successful assassination of Basayev in the summer of 2006 metastasized the front and reduced the large-scale operational capability of the militants. Much to the chagrin of Putin, this success has reduced the ability of the state to penetrate and destroy the remaining networks. Additionally, the Chechen Revolution is subsiding and entering a Thermidor stage, while the pan-Caucasian Islamic Revolutionary vanguard now dominates the insurgency; it is this second group that will continue to create political instability in the region for the near future. Moreover, demographic and economic trends threaten to fuel the growing insurgency, making prospects for long-term stability bleak at best. Russia will be involved militarily in the North Caucasus for a long time to come.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Dr. Donald Goldstein; Dr. Phil Williams; Dr. Anthony James Joes

School:University of Pittsburgh

School Location:USA - Pennsylvania

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:public and international affairs


Date of Publication:05/03/2007

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