There have never been more than one million Chechens in the world at any given time, and their homeland is no bigger than Connecticut, yet the trials and tragedy of the Chechen people have an underestimated but important legacy in the horrific guerrilla wars and terrorism of the twenty-first century. At the heart of the conflict is (of course) the policies of Josef Stalin, who attempted to deport an entire people to Kazakhstan in 1944.
For Further Awesome Reading…
Allah’s Mountains: The Battle for Chechnya by Sebastian Smith
This is hard-hitting embedded journalism, but Smith does a great job introducing the roots of the Chechen conflict in the opening chapters. From there he covers his experiences on the frontlines reporting the war for the French Press in the mid-90s.
Inferno in Chechnya: The Russian-Chechen Wars, the Al Qaeda Myth, and the Boston Marathon Bombings by Brian Glyn-Williams
In-depth historical look at the conflict and its roots. I wish it had been by a better writer: this is one of those books that you read after you’re already interested deeply in the subject. It wouldn’t make a convert out of anybody else. Still, there’s really useful stuff here and it’s easy to read.
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