It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
The spread of the war and the rise of new separatist activities
Boris Yeltsin's expectations of a quick surgical strike followed by Chechen capitulation were horribly misguided. Russia was quickly submerged in a quagmire. Trying to emulate American tactics, he forced upon Russian commanders to show "restraint". However, Russian commanders were not prepared nor trained for this. Other problems occurred as Yeltsin sent in freshly trained conscripts from the local region instead of sending in more professional soldiers. Highly mobile units of Chechen fighters inflicted humiliating losses on Russia's ill-prepared, and in general demoralized troops. The Russian military command then resorted to devastating air raids and use of artillery, causing enormous losses among the (Chechen and Russian) civilian population. When the Russians attacked the Chechen capital of Grozny during the first weeks of January 1995, about 25,000 civilians died under a week-long air-raid and artillery fire in the sealed-off city. The Russians are reported to have lost some thousands soldiers during their assault.
Massive use of artillery and air strikes remained the dominating strategy throughout the Russian campaign. In addition, Russian troops committed numerous and, in part, systematic war crimes against civilians, such as severe torture and summary executions, which often were linked to raids affecting entire villages. In the village of Samashki alone, about 100 civilians were killed by the Russians, and several hundreds beaten up or otherwise severely tortured. Chechen insurgents, in turn, resorted to guerrilla tactics, such as setting booby-traps and mining roads. As the war went on, they increasingly organized large hostage takings, seeking to exert pressure on the Russian public and the Russian leadership.
War Crimes In Chechnya and the Response of the West
The Russian forces have ignored their Geneva convention obligations to focus their attacks on combatants, and appear to take few safeguards to protect civilians: It is this carpet-bombing campaign which has been responsible for the vast majority of civilian deaths in the conflict in Chechnya. The Russian forces have used powerful surface-to surface rockets on numerous occasions, causing death tolls in the hundreds in the Central Market bombing in Grozny and in many smaller towns and villages. Lately, Russian commanders have threatened to use even more powerful explosives, including fuel air explosives which could have a disastrous casualty count if used against civilian targets. The bombing campaign has turned many parts of Chechnya to a wasteland: even the most experienced war reporters I have spoken to told me they have never seen anything in their careers like the destruction of the capital Grozny.
Russian forces have often refused to create safe corridors to allow civilians to leave areas of active fighting, trapping civilians behind front lines for months. The haggard men and women who came out of Grozny after a perilous journey told me of living for months in dark, cold cellars with no water, gas or electricity and limited food: their little children were often in shock, whimpering in the corners of their tents in Ingushetia and screaming in fright whenever Russian war planes flew over, reminding them of the terror in Grozny.
Men especially face grave difficulties when attempting to flee areas of fighting: they are subjected to verbal taunting, extortion, theft, beatings, and arbitrary arrest. On several occasions, refugee convoys have come under intense bombardment by Russian forces, causing heavy casualties. Currently, tens of thousands of civilians remain trapped in the Argun river gorge in Southern Chechnya, stuck behind Russian lines without a way out from the constant bombardment and rapidly running out of food supplies.
Bombings in Russia
Some high-profile individuals (including the exiled Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky), connected with the rebels, have suggested that the FSB (a Russian intelligence service) staged the bombings to provide a pretext for an invasion of Chechnya.
Crimes of War in Chechnya
nstead of attacking with infantry and tanks, the Russian army, in an attempt to reduce its own casualties, used heavy equipment and firepower to lay waste to the Chechen capital Grozny and many other towns and villages. The loss of life, mostly civilian, and the damage to property was terrific -- today most towns are still in ruin. In many instances Russian troops committed appalling war crimes, deliberately attacking the civilian population in direct violation of the Geneva Conventions. There is credible evidence of use of the so-called Heavy Flamethrowing System (TOS-1) - a fuel bomb land-based multiple launch delivery system, also known as "Buratino" among the Russian rank and file - against Chechen towns and villages during the winter campaign of 2000. The third protocol of the 1980 Geneva Convention strictly forbids the use of such "air-delivered incendiary weapons" in populated areas, even against military targets.
To compensate for the low quality of their fighting units in Chechnya, Russian military chiefs have adopted a strategy that tries to copy NATO's policy in the Balkans in 1999: bomb till victory and win without heavy casualties.
However, the indiscriminate attacks did not make the second Chechen war a "low casualty" engagement even for Russian forces. Unofficial estimates put Russian military losses in both Chechen conflicts (1994-1996 and 1999-2003) as high as 12,000 dead and some 100,000 wounded. Chechen losses (mostly civilian) are estimated at 100,000 or more.
Spoils of OIL
A major oil pipeline carries oil from fields in Baku on the Caspian Sea and Chechnya toward the Ukraine. Grozny has a major oil refinery along this pipeline. For Russia it is important that the oil pipelines and routes they take so oil can be sold to the western markets also meet their needs. However, there are various pipelines in discussion that does not involve Russia.
Major Western oil companies and the American government managed to keep out Iran from the picture. In addition, by also getting oil pipelines routed through Georgia, Russian influence was reduced. As a result, Russia want to do what they can to control the spoils, while the West do the same, leaving Chechnya in the middle being fought for by the two.
Russia Buries Evidence of Atrocities
“the U.N. Commission on Human Rights adopted a resolution on Chechnya that condemned serious human rights violations by Russia's forces, and raised concern about forced disappearances, torture, and summary executions. Sponsored by the E.U., and with strong U.S. backing, the resolution called for U.N. special rapporteurs to investigate these abuses in the war-torn republic and for credible criminal investigations by domestic agencies into all human rights and humanitarian law violations. Russia rejected a similar resolution adopted by the commission last year, and refused to comply with its requirements. It has vowed to do the same this year.”
Originally posted by Thomas Crowne
What an awesome submission! Theonly problem with this is that the links at the bottom are not working as they are made. Please, send me the links and I'll fix it!
Originally posted by Ulvetann
Bravo! Applause from me!
This is phenomenal. It fits perfectly with my latest covering of the swedish/russian military excersice, where I have dug up info about Colonel Vladimir Frolov. The commander of the forces during the Chechnian wars.
It will be perfect, You covering the Chechnian wars, I am sure glad for You being able to cover russian behaviour at Khankala and Zdorovye (Dachny).
Joint swedish/russian military exercise
You got my vote!
Radiation alert at Chechen plant
Prosecutors in Chechnya have opened a criminal investigation after finding "catastrophic" levels of radioactivity at a chemical factory in the republic.
Investigators say the radiation - in one place reportedly 58,000 times the usual level - poses a danger to people in the region's capital, Grozny.
The plant has reportedly not been secured since Russia bombed it in 1999.
Originally posted by AceOfBase
You left out a few bits of information like the Chechen collaboration with the Nazis in WW2 and their massacre of Russian forces in Grozny in 1942 which resulted in the expulsion of many Chechen and Ingush people to Siberia and other places until after the war.
That wasn't the first time they had collaborated with the enemy.
They also fought against the Russians during the Russian-Turkish wars.
There may be some involvement of oil in the current dispute but this goes back further than that.
[edit on 22-1-2006 by AceOfBase]
Chechen Rebellion would characteristically flame up whenever the Russian state faced a period of internal uncertainty. Rebellions occurred during the Russo-Turkish War (See Russo-Turkish War, 1877–1878), the Russian Revolution of 1905, the Russian Revolution of 1917, Russian Civil War, and Collectivization. Under Soviet Rule, Chechnya was combined with Ingushetia to form the autonomous republic of Chechen-Ingushetia in the late 1930s. The Chechens, though, again rose up against Soviet rule during the 1940s, resulting in the deportation of the Chechen population to the Kazakh SSR (later Kazakhstan) and Siberia during World War II.
Russian FSB are caught planting bombs in buildings to blame on the Chechens.
Most Russians are unlikely to see The Attempt on Russia, a French documentary shot with the help of tycoon Boris Berezovsky, now self-exiled to London. The film alleges involvement of Russian secret services in the Moscow and the Volgodonsk apartment bombings in the fall of1999. The terrorist attacks claimed 247 lives and paved the way for a new Chechen war that helped install Vladimir Putin as Russian President. While denying the claim, the Kremlin made sure that Russian TV would not show the footage, screened by human rights groups to limited audiences.
Google Video Link