No, the war in Chechnya was “restarted” when the apartment bombings took place in Moscow, while Chechen guerrillas under Shamil Basaev invaded the neighbouring province of Dagestan, thus breaking the peace treaty Yeltsin made with Chechnya. The Chechens started the conflict; unlike our war in Iraq, this one was not a war of choice, nor was it an aggressive attack upon a sovereign country. Furthermore, the terrorist acts in Moscow have been detrimental to Putin’s popularity instead of boosting it.
Western Europe has hardly been a paragon of “pacifistic values” in recent history. You need only look at France’s dealings in Algeria (and more recently in the Ivory Coast), or Europe’s general support for Clinton’s invasion of Kosovo.
Al-Qaeda also has stated political goals. Specifically, they want the removal of all Western troops from sacred Islamic territories, and they want the downfall of pro-Western regimes in countries like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. They also have regional ambitions involving the unification of Islamic countries. They have expressed these goals quite clearly, but that doesn’t mean they’re not murderers.
Russia is trying to preserve its territorial integrity, especially since guerrillas from other Arab countries are using the Gruzian mountains to sneak into Russia and carry out raids there. If Idaho decided to secede from the United States and invade Utah to add to its holdings, the American government wouldn’t let them. Spain isn’t letting the Basques secede, either. The job of any government is to maintain stability within its own borders, and prevent armed groups from seizing power on its own territory.
Russia is not a part of Western Europe. They are culturally and politically much different. Not all Europeans are as liberal as the media makes them out to be, but liberalism is prevalent in Europe, and it is not prevalent in Russia. Russians do not consider themselves part of Western Europe, and Europeans do not consider to be part of Western Europe. I don’t understand why you would say the two were one and same dating back to Kiev when their histories are drastically different and divergent. Russians are Eastern Orthodox, have more authoritarian political views, and use a different alphabet.
The Chechens keep attacking Russia because Russia keeps occupying Chechnya. They became a threat to Russia because Russia did not want them to become independent, and sent the army in, using extremely harsh tactics to crush the rebellion. This is very different than a bunch of religious whackos attacking us on 9/11 because of a twisted cosmic view. The Palestinian crisis is also not about a bunch of religious whackos and is very different than 9/11.
The war was initially started in part to boost Putin’s popularity. Because it has been mishandled and has been going on for a long time, it has begun to hurt his popularity. But he did send the troops in as a political boost.
You can make the argument its being fought for reasons of territorial integrity. But let me ask - Does Israel than have the right to deny the Palestinians any state of their own, because of the ‘right of nations to preserve territorial integrity’?
You claim Europeans are not really pacifists. Well, whether
Even if Europeans aren’t that pacifistic, the fact that they regularly condemn Russia’s intervention in Chechnya shows that Russia is not in fact ‘part of Europe’, at least politically. Which was my point.
A better example would be the sides everyone took during the various Balkan crises. The Russians sided with the Serbs; the Western Europeans with the Croats. The Europeans believed the Serbs to be the villains, the Russians the opposite. Which shows yet again how culturally and politically different they are.
Palestine is a unique case, though; it’s in a kind of political limbo, as most of the disputed territories are in fact outside Israel’s internationally recognized borders. Furthermore, some of the conflict arose from Israel’s own invasion of other sovereign countries (e.g. Lebanon). However, there’s little to sympathize with about Palestinian militant groups. My position on this is the same as my position on the Chechen war: I think that the United States (and Europe, and everyone else) should stay out of that conflict altogether.
But supposing that Palestine was, legally, within Israel’s recognized borders, does that than give them the moral authority to deny the Palestinians a state, as you seem to be implying it does the Russians with the Chechens? I’
I agree there’s little to sympathize with Palestinian militant groups. Same with Chechen, even more so because they’re not above gunning down school children. But does that make the cause of a Palestinian state, and the cause of a Chechen one, immoral because of the right of nations to preserve their borders?
The unique political status of Palestine is inextricable from that whole conflict; it’s partially what fuels it, since, while Israel doesn’t want to give the Palestinians a state, it doesn’t really want to let them fully integrate into Israeli society, either. A more accurate analogy would be between Chechens and Native Americans. Clearly, the United States conducted itself very badly towards Native American tribes over the course of history. However, supposing that now some descendants of Native Americans were to demand that we get off their land, a hundred and fifty years after our battles with their ancestors, and give them a state - would you consider that a reasonable request, especially if they accompanied it with terrorist acts against schools? The government would not give them independence; in fact, it would probably be unable to even if it wanted to. At best, a compromise could be achieved wherein they could have some measure of political autonomy, kind of like the peace treaty Russia reached with Chechnya. An armed insurrection into neighbouring territories, however, would certainly be met with a military response.
It is analogous to Native Americans? But is there a section of our country populated and run exclusively by Native Americans? No… They’ve ceased to be a functioning ethnic group or political entity. They’re scattered over the country in reservations, they half-heartedly embrace some spiritual practices of their ancestors, but really just for novelty. Mostly they have high suicide, alcoholism, and unemployment rates, with some of them lucking out with ancestral lands and getting rich off of casinos run by white businessmen.
the Chechens, on the other hand, are all heavily concentrated in a part of Russia where they alone mostly live. They are politically cohesive. It may not legally be like the situation between the Palestinians and Israelis, but in all the other aspects(the ones that matter, since the technical legality in the eyes of international law doesn’t matter that much, as we’ve seen with Iraq), it is very much like the situation between the Palestinians and Israelis. The Chechens have their own region where they live - this region is culturally and politically separate from Russia - they want independence. Now, you mention armed incursions into other territories… I never said I agreed with their tactics… and as long as they keep using those tactics, Russia shouldn’t be expected to reach any sort of peace agreement.
Actually, the two are pretty similar. Chechen society was similar to Native American society, a sort of decentralized tribal society without a developed concept of government, and the land currently called “Chechnya” is in fact quite different from the mountain territories they historically lived in. Hell, the city they claim as their capital was in fact built from the ground up by Russia. Obviously, the Native Americans aren’t trying to get their land back, but suppose that a few did show up and ask for it - should we give it to them? What if a state decided to secede? Obviously there are some very strong regional feelings in the United States, though fortunately much less violent. Should the United States let them have total independence, especially if they attacked other states or let other fighters from Canada or Mexico through their borders?
To start with, I’d have to say I can’t agree more with Sephiroth regarding Chechnya. The Chechen rebels are murdering thugs who literally kill kids. They are cowards and punks and don’t deserve their own country. If every micro-ethnicity in Russia got its own country just by blowing stuff up, there wouldn’t be a Russia anymore. The whole Chechnya thing is basically who showing who who’s boss. Chechnya is part of Russia, and Russia has every right to put down the violent criminals in its country.
I never said it was a part of Western Europe. Its geographically impossible for it to be a part of Western Europe since it forms the eastern perimeter of said continent. While there are some cultural differences between Russia and Western Europe, there are also cultural differences bewteen Russia and Poland or Russia and Mongolia, a country Russia even borders. To say that western Europe and Russia are much different isn’t very accurate though. The culture between Russia and India are very different. The culture between Lithuania and Russia are relatively identical, wheras Russia and France…somewhat similar.
Chechnya is a part of Russia, its only natural for a nation to occupy its provinces.
The UN has condemned Israel many times for all sorts of reasons. Israel is still a part of the UN. The African Union condemns Sudan, yet Sudan is still a member of the African Union. Bodies can criticize themselves, often its encouraged.
Wow…that is one of the more racist things I have seen posted on a forum before. I guess most white people only worship the God of their ancestors for novelty purposes? The Pope’s just there for shits and giggles? I am an atheist but thats one of the most disrespectful things I’ve ever read about someone’s religion before. You should be ashamed.
Contrary to your racist rhetoric, there are large parts of the country populated only by natives. They are not only a functioning ethnic group, but they’re increasingly strengthening as a political body. Arizona, my state, is home to the largest Indian Reservation in the world, the Navajo Nation. While there are larger tribes and more reservations in Oklahoma, the 300,000 natives that live in my state form a sizable ethnic minority. The Navajo Nation is larger than 10 states. While natives have the highest suicide, homicide, sexual assault, drug addiction and alcoholism, domestic violence, and poverty rates out of any race in the country…that is something we need to do something about, not mock or demean. I have several Navajo, Hopi, Pima, Apache, and Maricopa friends. They are all good people. I also know many more who’d just love to hear you trash talk their people. Navajos are pretty big guys.
The same can be said for any of the hundreds of native tribes living from Alaska to Argentina.
Finally, I think a good analogy for Chechnya would be Utah itself. Lets say a certain group of religious fundamentalists just wanted to break away from the rest of the country and make its own? So they blow up a few schools and libraries…maybe burn a museum down. Are we supposed to give these radicals their own land?
Or what if some whitepower militia took over a patch of mountains or something. There are militia groups like that all over the country that our government keeps tabs on…simply because they don’t want something like Chechnya happening in our backwoods. Wasn’t Timothy McVeigh hooked up with some whitepower militia or something? And didn’t he blow some public building up full of kids? Screw people like that.
Once again, the Chechen situation is much more similar to what’s going on in Palestine than what happened over here with the Native Americans. Or, a better example would be China’s horrible repression of Tibet, or Hussein’s repression of the Kurds and Shiites, or Indonesia’s repression of East Timor. Are those situations like ‘the Native Americans’? I’m actually kind of baffled why SK is in Russia’s corner in this situation. Did Hussein have a right to beat down on the Kurds and Shiites in the name of ‘territorial integrity’? And, do the Israelis have such a right? The ‘unique legal status’ of Palestine really means nothing, because the Iraq war has taught us how little legal definitions of boundaries mean when push comes to shove. Does China have the right to beat down on Tibet in the name of territorial integrity? Did Indonesia have such a right to murder the people of East Timor? What about Yugoslavia and Kosovo?
For the umpteenth time, many Chechen militants use horribly dirty tactidcs, and thats not acceptable. So do the Russians - and the dirty tactics of the Chechens don’t justify the Russians dirty tactics, or the fact that they are repressing a group of people who want to be free.
The Native Americans may be forming into a cohesive political, but the analogy is still so far removed from what’s going on in Chechnya. Natives are all of much different mixtures of race, and the only thing they have in common is their poor socioeconomic status and the accompanying maladies. Now, they may be organizing precisely because of those things, and if so more power to them. But it is still a bad analogy. It was not my intention to ‘trash talk’ Natives, but rather to show why what’s going in Chechnya is not like what’s going with the Native Americans in this country, at all. You say that’s racist. What exactly was your jibe about ‘Have a great black history month?’ What if I called you racist for opposing affirmative action? The word ‘racist’ is thrown around far too much in political arguments, usually without merit.
Actually, it’s quite similar to what happened with the Native Americans, except Native Americans aren’t killing people over “independence.” Russia conquered Chechen land, like America conquered Native American land; then, Chechen land was fully integrated into Russia, like Native American land was fully integrated into America; then, that land was worked and developed by Russia, like Native American land was by America. The Chechen capital city is a completely Russian creation, like New York City is an American one (well, with some Dutch influence), and unlike Jerusalem, which existed before the modern state of Israel appeared. Should we then hand New York City over to the descendants of the Algonquin tribes, if such descendants were to show up and form a “political entity”? The Palestinians have some historical claim to their territories, but they don’t demand (with the exception of the most extremist and loathsome militant groups) that they be given control of all of Israel, whereas the Chechens lay claim to lands that were never theirs.
No, because in those cases (except maybe for Kosovo, which is historic Serbian territory), the authoritarian governments in question were trying to squelch any development of autonomy in those regions (as authoritarian governments tend to), rather than responding to a military crisis. By contrast, Chechnya signed a peace treaty with Russia that granted it a measure of autonomy, and then was the first to break it by invading a neighbouring province. I’m not justifying everything Russia does in response, but I am saying that what Russia does inside its own borders is its own business and no one else’s.
And you still haven’t answered the question. What if an American state decided to secede, and assassinated federal officials, blew up schools, and invaded a neighbouring state in the name of its “freedom”? Should the United States give it full independence because it “wants to be free”?
Once again, the Chechen situation is much more similar to what’s going on in Palestine than what happened over here with the Native Americans.
No, it is not. How many times do we have to tell you that the Israel situation is just much much more complicated then Chechnya? For it to be anything at all like Israel, all of this would have to be true:
The Chechnyans are a sizeble minority in Russia itself.
All of the other ethnic Chechens in the area (totally 15+ members in the UN) would have fought wars with Russia. Rulers of said Chechen nations outnumber ethnic Russians by about 50. Various rulers of said Chechen nations will have spoken openly about destroying Russia.
Russia would have to occupy sizeble amounts of said Chechen county’s territories, expanding Russia’s own size by almost double.
There are plenty of reasons why Israel and Chechnya aren’t that much similar. The scenario that Sephiroth is talking about is much more similar.
It was not my intention to ‘trash talk’ Natives, but rather to show why what’s going in Chechnya is not like what’s going with the Native Americans in this country, at all.
No one ever said it was. It was a hypothetical scenario.
You say that’s racist.
No, now you are just making up lies, possibly to trash talk me as well. I won’t take it. I said you mocking the natives’ religion was racist. The natives do not practice their traditions for the sake of novelty any more than any Christian churchgoer. That was just a horribly ignorant thing for you to post.
What exactly was your jibe about ‘Have a great black history month?’
It is black history month. I was basically putting in my last two cents to Sephiroth because it didn’t seem like we were getting anywhere in our discussion.
What if I called you racist for opposing affirmative action?
Oooooh You better not!
The word ‘racist’ is thrown around far too much in political arguments, usually without merit.
I bet alot of racists would agree with you…but seriously. Mocking the natives’ spiritual beliefs in such a hardcore way as you just did was pretty messed up. I’m guessing you’re just a generally ignorant person and probably not racist. Your litany of ignorant posts is a testament to this. Now you know, I suppose, that most natives’ don’t take their spiritualities for granted…and this is coming from an atheist.
First of all, I’ll get back to the Chechen thing because it really is not as simple as ‘how many times do we have to tell you that its like the Native Americans???’ Its because we don’t have Native Americans fighting for their independence in this country; that alone shows there are factors in Chechnya which makes the situation over there much more different and serious than the situation we have with the Native Americans in this country. How you can compare the two when Indians over here are not in fact blowing places up or demanding a country of their own?
Second of all, Chechens who wish to claim areas of Russia where they have not lived for a long time of course have no right to do so. But I believe they do have a right to the lands they currently inhabit near the Caucasus mountains(I think that’s where it is).
Third: You haven’t contribued a lot besides ‘Yeah, that shows you!’ every time SK makes a point. Its like you’re trying to get your digs in because your last argument stalemated, because you descended into immaturity and occasional substanceless in that one as well. Leave this argument if your only purpose is to make it look like you’re part of a winning argument by throwing out little comments every time SK makes a point.
Third: When I said ‘Native Americans religion is like a novelty’, what I was trying to say is that it was more akin to the invention of ‘Kwanzaa’ or the attempted revival of the Irish Gaelic language than it is to other older, continuous religions like Christianity or Judaism. In other words, its an attempt to revive cultural and spiritual bonds that had long been destroyed or non-existent. Unlike the Chechens or other similar displaced peoples, who’s bonds have remained intact and active over the centuries. And then, for you to throw the word ‘racist’ at me, after you had mocked the liberal affinity for Black History Month… At this point, what are you trying to prove? Like I said, you just respond to everything said with either ridiculous little ‘nyah nyahs’ or just saying how wrong the other person is, with little argument or support. Your point about how Chechens lay claim to other areas besides their historical homeland was the only point you made last post.
Fourth, I brought up Black History month because it was mocking the very type of thing that I criticized when I said that the Native Americans were reinventing their religion and spiritual beliefs. It could also very easily be construed by more sensitive liberals(but by no means myself) as being racist, just as my comments were construed by one sensitive person(yourself) as being racist.
The point is that American states aren’t trying to do those things, because the situation in Chenchnya is much different than anything we have over here. Which is why comparisons to Native Americans doesn’t hold up, because the Native Americans aren’t struggling for an independent country and fighting us tooth-and-nail for one. Could you think of another situation in the world where an ethnic group is doing such a thing, yet you believe they are morally wrong according to international law?
Because if the Native Americans really were fighting us for an independent country of their own, I would probably think they deserved one. However, they’re not fighting for such a thing, which leads me to believe they are not as deeply culturally bonded as the Chechens.
No one ever said they were. Why don’t you get it? Read Sephiroth’s posts fully. I may not agree with everything that he has to say, but he at least appears to do some research on things before he posts. The Native American thing is a hypothetical scenario, because something like Chechnya is only really happening in Chechnya.
So what? I happen to agree with Sephiroth…big deal. I’m not losing any sleep over it, why are you.
To start with, the natives’ spiritual beliefs aren’t like some invented African American holiday. Secondly, they predate Judaism and Christianity by thousands and thousands of years. Finally, you’re still letting us know how horribly ignorant you are. Why don’t you crack a book or find some information on the internet before you make any more stupid, racist comments.
The natives’ spiritual beliefs haven’t been destroyed, displaced, or ignored. They remain just as intact and sacred as they did 100, 1000, and 10000 years ago. You’re starting to get offensive, and I’d suggest you quit the racist rhetoric, its pretty disgusting.
I never said anything of the sort! Keep making up lies about people, it makes your racist rhetoric look all the more important.
Dude…I didn’t even make that point or post anything even remotely similar to that. Do you smoke drugs when you type…cuz it doesn’t appear that you’re even paying attention to this topic.
Wishing someone a happy holiday can be perceived as racist? Yeah…maybe if you’re trying to celebrate Hitler’s birthday or something.
That seems to be a circular argument. It’s like you’re saying that their cause is justified simply by virtue of the fact that they’re fighting, as opposed to fighting because their cause is justified, whereas American states aren’t fighting, so therefore they must not have a justified cause.
The “legal status” of the Palestinians is in fact of great importance in that particular conflict. Like I said, Israel doesn’t want to give them a state, but they’re also not part of Israeli society (and many Israelis don’t really want to integrate them into it). Thus, the Palestinians are neither independent people nor Israeli citizens, and don’t really have clearly defined legal rights, which is part of what fuels the estrangement between them and Israel, and their feelings of dispossession. The Chechens have no recourse to this argument, because they are Russian citizens; if they hadn’t started a war with Russia by invading other provinces, they would have the same status and legal rights as any other Russian. That’s why I drew the comparison between them and Native Americans, because the histories of those conflicts are almost identical - after the wars, the land was developed by the countries that had conquered it, and the people who had originally lived there were gradually integrated into those countries, while keeping some of their old customs.
If some Algonquin descendants showed up tomorrow, carried out a few subway bombings, and demanded that we give New York City back to them because that was where their land used to be, there’s no way we could possibly comply with that demand, because a lot happened to that land in the time that passed. It’s now an American residential and commercial centre, full of American-built infrastructure and industry that is very productive but was not there before. The Algonquins can’t really claim all this because it never belonged to them. Thus, the land cannot be said to unequivocally “belong” to the Algonquins. For the exact same reason, the Palestinians can’t justifiably demand full control over all of Israel. The same thing applies to, for one thing, the city the Chechens claim as their capital. It’s a Russian city. It was originally founded by Russians. The infrastructure in that whole land was built by Russians (and though much of it has been destroyed in the war, if and when the war ends, the Russians will be the ones to rebuild it). Whatever industry exists in that land was built by Russians. The Chechens don’t have claims to these things any more than Algonquin descendants have claims to New York City or Palestinian refugees have claims to Tel Aviv. So, if the Algonquins showed up, at best the American government could only offer them some measure of autonomy in some region of land, which is pretty much what we have now.
Furthermore, concerning the “depth” of cultural bonds, this strain of Chechen “nationalism” is a new one in many key ways. For one thing, it’s heavily informed by the al-Qaeda worldview that promotes the idea of a unified Islamic state. It is precisely because of this messianic element that Chechen rebels invaded a neighbouring province: even though it is full of other ethnic groups, it was Muslim, and thus a prime target for this involuntary “unification.” There’s some overlap between Chechen rebels and al-Qaeda; this development, too, has been recent, rather than long-standing. There’s also a foreign presence there, in the form of mercenaries from countries like Afghanistan, who are being given a free pass through Chechnya. Lastly, once again, this conflict cannot be compared to the others you mentioned because the Russians are responding to a military crisis, namely the fact that the Chechens broke a peace agreement that they themselves signed.
The Native Americans abadoned the cultural practices and religions of their ancestors when they were put on reservations in the 19th century. What we’re seeing now is a revival movement to foster some form of identity amongst Native American communities, in the hopes that it will help them deal with some of the other problems that have been discussed in thread. The best evidence for this is that the majority of Native Americans do not practice such beliefs, and would probably consider such an association stereotyping. A minority have made a conscious choice to rediscover the beliefs of their ancestors.
“All of the other ethnic Chechens in the area (totally 15+ members in the UN) would have fought wars with Russia. Rulers of said Chechen nations outnumber ethnic Russians by about 50. Various rulers of said Chechen nations will have spoken openly about destroying Russia.
Russia would have to occupy sizeble amounts of said Chechen county’s territories, expanding Russia’s own size by almost double.”
I somehow took this to mean that Chechens would encroach upon Russian territory, but reading it again I’m not sure what you’re trying to say, unless your saying that the Russians are justified in conquering Chechen areas because the Chechens are the aggressors.
Sin: Thank you :moogle:
SK: I think what we’ve come to is that the Chechen situation isn’t like Palestine or the others I mentioned, nor like the Native Americans, but needs to be evaluated by its own circumstances.
The natives’ have never abandoned their cultures or spiritual beliefs. Please refrain from posting your bullshit racist remarks, you’ve gotten to the point where its very offensive.
Russia does not and cannot conquer Chechen areas because what you refer to as Chechen areas are in fact, Russian areas.
What I was saying, which so obviously slipped you in your racist caterwaulings, is that the situations in Chechnya and Israel are nothing alike. The only real similarity between the two is that they are Muslim and prone to acts of terrorism. For the Chechen case to be anything at all like Israel, the Chechens would have to outnumber ethnic Russians in the region by about 50-to-1. Russia would also have to be occupying illegally territory which it does not belong to. There would be about 15 other Chechen countries all surrounding Russia, all of which who have fought it in the past, most of which have demanded its destruction.
Chechnya and Israel have very, very little in common. The analogy that Sephiroth proposed regarding the hypothetical native unrest is much more similar to Chechnya than Israel could ever be.
The question that I’m dying to know, and I’m sure many of you are as well…… is Curtis for real or is he just some racist troll? Racists like him truly disgust me.