Terror in Chechnya is the definitive account of Russian war crimes in Chechnya. Emma Gilligan provides a comprehensive history of the second Chechen conflict of 1999 to 2005, revealing one of the most appalling human rights catastrophes of the modern era--one that has yet to be fully acknowledged by the international community. Drawing upon eyewitness testimony and interviews with refugees and key political and humanitarian figures, Gilligan tells for the first time the full story of the Russian military's systematic use of torture, disappearances, executions, and other punitive tactics against the Chechen population.
In Terror in Chechnya, Gilligan challenges Russian claims that civilian casualties in Chechnya were an unavoidable consequence of civil war. She argues that racism and nationalism were substantial factors in Russia's second war against the Chechens and the resulting refugee crisis. She does not ignore the war crimes committed by Chechen separatists and pro-Moscow forces. Gilligan traces the radicalization of Chechen fighters and sheds light on the Dubrovka and Beslan hostage crises, demonstrating how they undermined the separatist movement and in turn contributed to racial hatred against Chechens in Moscow.
A haunting testament of modern-day crimes against humanity, Terror in Chechnya also looks at the international response to the conflict, focusing on Europe's humanitarian and human rights efforts inside Chechnya.
Emma Gilligan is assistant professor of Russian history and human rights at the University of Connecticut. She is the author of Defending Human Rights in Russia: Sergei Kovalyov, Dissident and Human Rights Commissioner, 1969-2003.
"Emma Gilligan's book chronicles Moscow's brutal response to the republic's demand for freedom, an onslaught that has shattered Chechen society, fuelled armed resistance across the Caucasus and bred a new generation of violent extremists. She focuses on the second Chechen war, started by Boris Yeltsin in autumn 1999 and pursued by Vladimir Putin when he stepped up from the prime minister's post to the Kremlin in 2000. . . . Her thorough research is enlivened by testimony from Chechen victims of Russian troops and their local henchmen."--Irish Times
"Gilligan provides the definitive history of Russian policies toward Chechnya in the period from 1999 to the present. Utilizing first-person interviews and documents from Russian, US, and international nongovernmental organizations, she narrates the events of the First and Second Chechen wars, the rise of Chechen terrorism, and the events at Beslan within a larger context of human rights, making comparisons to other 20th-century situations including those in Bosnia. . . . She has created a history remarkably free of technical jargon and specialist vocabulary that should serve as a good introduction to the subject and region for students and scholars of history, political science, and international law."--Choice
"Terror in Chechnya is perhaps the most important book about the Chechen war available in English today."--Anna Brodsky, Russian Review
"[Gilligan's] book is an important contribution to the literature. Her multilayered approach, her ability to highlight competing perspectives, and her insights into the way future investigations of human rights abuses could be conducted make her work a valuable contribution to the study of human rights."--Maria Raquel Freire, Perspectives on Politics
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