The Strange Activist Who “Provoked” Chechnya’s Anti-Gay Crackdown
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The Strange Activist Who “Provoked” Chechnya’s Anti-Gay Crackdown
Quote:I have no appropriate segue to my topic for this first post—the persecution of gays in Chechnya, the latest big horror story coming out of Russia (and it is horrific)—so I’ll just get down to the part of the story no one here is talking about: Who or what is, the organization cited by everyone from Novaya Gazeta (which first broke this story) to the New York Times as having played a central role in “inciting” the vicious Chechen crackdown on local gays.

In case you haven’t heard about it yet, over the past couple of months there’s been a gruesome crackdown in Chechnya on gays, including allegations of mass roundups, concentration camps, torture, and murder by Chechen police—which is a synonym for death squads under Chechnya’s truly scary sociopath-in-chief, “king” Ramzan Kadyrov.

According to Novaya Gazeta—the opposition muckraking newspaper where Anna Politkovskaya published until she was assassinated in 2006, most likely by Kadyrov’s Chechens—since March, hundreds of suspected homosexuals have been rounded up in Chechnya and thrown into prisons, where they’ve been tortured and forced to give up names of other homosexuals. At least three gays have been murdered in custody so far, possibly many more. It’s part of a wider crackdown that’s been going on for several months by an increasingly paranoid and eccentric Kadyrov—targeting gays, drug users, and alleged Islamic State (IS) jihadis.

A quick word about Kadyrov—he took power in Chechnya in 2004 after his father and Chechnya’s president at the time, Akhmad Kadyrov, was blown up by a bomb planted under his VIP soccer stadium seat. Ramzan was just 27 years old at the time, his only experience was leading a Chechen death squad. He didn’t have anything like his father’s stature. Akhmad Kadyrov was the head of a powerful Chechen clan, a hero of the first Chechen War that the Russians lost in the mid-1990s, and chief mufti of the briefly-independent Chechnya from 1996-1999. During its brief independence, Chechnya, whose cause had stolen the hearts of every romantic western hack and human rights crusader, quickly morphed into the scariest place on earth—a magnet for every dumb young male psycho Salafist from Hamburg to Karachi and points in between.For them, it was paradise on earth—slave markets, public executions, beheadings, roaming bands of Wahhabi-inspired militias trying to out-Wahhab and out-jihad each other.

(Al Qaeda leader Zawahiri tried setting up base in Chechnya in 1996, but was arrested in Dagestan and freed under murky circumstances, likely involving Gulf bribes; the 9/11 hijackers had originally wanted to go to Chechnya to fight, before his Al Qaeda commanders gave them a new assignment in the US. I wrote an article awhile back on the intertwining links between Chechen separatists and Al Qaeda, a story that officially never happened, until too many Islamic State Chechens finally broke that charade.)

It was this ugly turn to violent, Saudi-backed Wahhabi extremism that pushed Ramzan’s father Akhmad, then the chief mufti of Chechnya, to cut a deal with Yeltsin-Putin in 1999 against the Wahhabis.

To get a sense of how bad it was in Chechnya during that brief period of independence, try reading this old Los Angeles Times article about kidnap victims and Chechen slave markets:
Quote: Chechnya’s Grimmest Industry

The stories of survivors are like the relics of some wild, half-forgotten era of warlords and lawless barbarism. Victims have been kept in earthen pits or small cells that are often scrawled with the initials of hundreds of earlier captives. They have been used as slaves to dig trenches or build large houses for relatives of the kidnappers.

The kidnappers have been known to mutilate their captives, even children, severing their ears or fingers. Gangs have sent videotaped recordings of mutilations and beheadings to relatives to terrify them into finding the ransom. Russian authorities have used the gruesome videos to feed anti-Chechen sentiment and boost public support for Moscow’s latest war in the separatist republic.

When the kidnapping industry reached its peak a few years ago, there was even a relatively open “slave market” in Grozny, near Minutka Square, where the names and details of human livestock circulated on lists for interested buyers. Gangs often traded hostages or stole them from one another.

… Kirill Perchenko, 22, the son of a Moscow art dealer, was kidnapped in August 1999 from one of Moscow’s fashionable streets and trucked to Grozny. He was sold to Ramzan Akhmadov… and saw hundreds of names, going back to 1992, scratched on the walls of the warlord’s cells.

He says that during his captivity he watched seven men being executed by his captors. One of his friends was bashed to death.

Once, a hostage, a Russian officer, attacked and wounded one of the guards with a knife. Punishment was immediate.

“They put him on the ground, and four hostages had to hold his arms and legs,” Perchenko remembers. “They took a two-handed saw and killed him. He was lying on his stomach screaming. They cut from the back. From the back you hit the spine first, and it’s very painful.”

“The next day they took us all out of our cell and cut off the head of an 82-year-old man they had taken in Grozny. They just took it off with a knife and said, ‘For Allah,’ before killing him. They put both [men’s] heads on poles. And they took out the heart of the old man and nailed it to a tree.”

Takes a while for it to get to the point but it's interesting stuff.

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 Apr 24 13:29
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