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Russia Needs to Rethink North Caucasus – OCGG

In a televised address broadcast live on Russian TV on September 4, Putin said, “we have to admit that we showed no understanding of the processes occurring in our country and the world at large. We failed to act appropriately, and instead, displayed weakness. And the weak are beaten.” This is worrying as it signals a repetition, perhaps in amplified form, of the counterproductive iron-fist policies that have led to up to half of Chechnya’s population leaving and over 200,000 fatalities — according to the most reliable estimates — since the first Chechen war in 1994-96.