Chechen Diplomat Foresees Growing Hatred Of Russians

Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 5 Issue: 9

Yury Shchekochikhin, the antiwar journalist and Duma member who died last year under mysterious circumstances (see Chechnya Weekly, July 10, 2003), preserved this haunting quotation from a conversation of his with Chechen diplomat Akhmed Zakaev. It may be found in Shchekochikhin’s book, Forgotten Chechnya, Moscow, 2003. Zakaev told him that “for the time being there are still Chechens for you to negotiate with….those who grew up earlier when there was no war, who graduated from Russian colleges, who used to read books and listen to music, who at least know some names from literature and history. But now Chechens are coming who will kill you just because you are a Russian, and me too at the same time: Those who have never seen anything except war. Even before the war, under Dudaev, they did not see much; all the cultured levels of society were being uprooted…Sooner or later it will be necessary for you to negotiate with somebody…but how?”