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050401 War In Chechnya In The Eyes Of Russians
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050401 War In Chechnya In The Eyes Of Russians

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  • 1. War in Chechnya in the eyes of Russians Ilya Ponomarev, April 2005
  • 2. History of the conflict
    • 1817 – beginning of Chechen-Russian conflict, gen. Ermolov troops enter Chechnya
    • 1860 – conflict settled; imam Shamil honored by Tsar Alexander II
    • 1918-1920 – Chechen troops are fighting for bolsheviks
    • 1922 – Chechnya becomes autonomy inside Russian Federation
    • 1944 – Chechens deportation under Stalin’s order
    • 1957 – Chechens allowed to come back
    • 1990 – declaration of sovereignty
    • 1991 – Dudaev becomes Chechen leader; de-facto separation of Chechnya from Russia, Rutskoy ultimatum fails, Russian military withdrawn
    • 1994 – Russia-sponsored Chechen opposition tries to replace Dudaev and fails
    • 1994 – beginning of first war, Russian tanks attack Grozny
    • 1996 – Dudaev killed, Yandarbiev acting president
    • 1996 – gen. Lebed, using Russian oligarch Berezovsky as mediator, signes peace treaty in Khasavyurt
    • 1997 – Maskhadov elected Chechen President
    • 1999 – invasion of Basaev troops to Dagestan, terrorists attacks in Moscow and other cities, beginning of second war
    • 2000 – Putin selects Akhmad Kadyrov to become a new Chechen leader
    • 2002 – Nord-Ost hostages crisis
    • 2003 – Kadyrov writes new Constitution and becomes Chechen President
    • 2004 – Kadyrov assassinated, Alkhanov becomes new President
    • 2004 – Beslan
    • 2005 – Maskhadov killed near Grozny
  • 3. First War (1994-1996)
    • Disapproval was high from the very beginning:
      • Was not considered to be a war, just reckless action by an unpredictable and unpopular president
      • Critics both from left and right, total opposition by media
      • Associations with Afganistan affair
      • Many military defeats during campaign
        • Boasts by gen. Grachev turned into heavy casualties
  • 4. First War (1994-1996) What do you think of the decision for Russian troops to enter Chechnya? FOM (www.fom.ru), January 1995
  • 5. First War (1994-1996) What do you think is most important – peace in Chechnya or Russia’s integrity? FOM (www.fom.ru), November 1996
  • 6. First War (1994-1996) Do you approve Eltsyn’s decision to withdraw troops from Chechnya? FOM (www.fom.ru), November 1996
  • 7. First War (1994-1996) How did your attitude towards general Lebed changed after signing peace agreement? FOM (www.fom.ru), September 1996
  • 8. Second War (1999-???)
    • High popular support:
      • Demand to restore national dignity
      • Retaliation for previous defeats and for terrorist attacks in Russian cities
        • Chechens are considered to be « absolute evil »
      • High hopes that order can be restored and security achieved
      • Public opinion consolidated around Putin – uncompromised, young, energetic and visibly strong politician who promised to solve the problem
      • Relatively low mortality in the army during first months of campaigning, military successes
  • 9. Second War (1999-???) How does war in Chechnya affects Putin’s ratings? FOM (www.fom.ru), June 2001
  • 10. Second War (1999-???) How will decision to start peace negotiations affect your opinion about Putin? FOM (www.fom.ru), March 2000
  • 11. Second War (1999-???) Worst events of year 2000 FOM (www.fom.ru), December 2000
  • 12. Second War (1999-???) Personal Putin’s failures in 2000 FOM (www.fom.ru), December 2000
  • 13. Second War (1999-???)
    • War turned to be different as people hoped and started to resemble first campaign:
      • Nord-Ost and especially Beslan delivered shock to the nation:
        • Using force was authorized by president, because otherwise negotiations with Maskhadov would become imminent
      • Kadyrov appeared to be a corrupt tyrant and obvious criminal
        • His assassination on Victory Day 2004 demonstrated zero control by military over the situation
      • Contradictions between declarations of Putin and reality became obvious
  • 14. Second War (1999-???) What would be the consequences of the conflict in Chechnya? VCIOM (www.wciom.ru), March 2001
  • 15. Second War (1999-???) How you can characterize current situation in Chechnya? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005
  • 16. Second War (1999-???) Do you think Russian authorities can achieve their objectives in Chechnya? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), April 2004
  • 17. Second War (1999-???) How will the Chechen presidential elections affect situation in the republic? ROMIR (www.romir.ru), August 2004
  • 18. Second War (1999-???) Do you approve government actions in Chechnya? ROMIR (www.romir.ru), August 2004
  • 19. Second War (1999-???)
    • Current situation:
      • There is no publicly recognized solution to the problem
        • Idea of independence unpopular both among Russians and Chechens
      • Putin afraid of possible international prosecution after his resignation, but cannot lose face
      • Human rights activists and Western foundations are compromised in the eyes of Russians
      • Maskhadov believed to be killed under secret deal between Putin and Bush
      • Attitude towards Chechens slightly better
        • People worries start to shift from fears of national conflict towards fears of country disintegration and rise of separatism and extremism
      • Maskadov’s death did not seriously changed attitude towards the war
      • Economic issues become more important
  • 20. Second War (1999-???) How do you see future of Chechnya? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005
  • 21. Maskhadov death What do you feel about Maskhadov been killed? FOM (www.fom.ru), March 2005
  • 22. Maskhadov death How Maskhadov’s death will affect the situation in Chechnya? FOM (www.fom.ru), March 2005
  • 23. Maskhadov death How Maskhadov’s death will affect the level of resistance in Chechnya? FOM (www.fom.ru), March 2005
  • 24. Attitude towards Chechens Are Chechens the same people as Russians and have the same amount of civil rights? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), December 2003
  • 25. Attitude towards Chechens Do you hate Chechens? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), December 2003
  • 26. Attitude towards Chechens Are you afraid of Chechens? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), December 2003
  • 27. Attitude towards Chechens How shall we treat Chechens? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), December 2003
  • 28. Public opinion on terrorist attacks How would you assess the probability of new terrorist attacks? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005
  • 29. Public opinion on terrorist attacks Who is responsible for terrorist attacks in Russian cities? NBP (www.nbp-info.ru), October 2004, Urals region
  • 30. Public opinion on terrorist attacks What to do in case of new taking hostages? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005
  • 31. Public opinion on terrorist attacks What do you think about proposal of Attorney General to take terrorists relatives as hostages? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005
  • 32. What to do? What shall Russia do now in Chechnya? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), January 2005 Nord-Ost terrorist attack
  • 33. What to do? What should government do in Chechnya? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), October 2003
  • 34. What to do? Can the government solve the problem of Chechen conflict? FOM (www.fom.ru), March 2005
  • 35. Importance of Chechnya conflict in Russian politics What are the major problems in your life? Levada-Center (www.levada.ru), December 2004 Putin elected