In February 2015, a liberal Russian politician named Boris Nemtsov, who is very opposed to the government of Vladimir Putin, took his girlfriend to dinner in Moscow. He was shot four times in the back just hours after a public address in support of Russia’s anti-war march in Ukraine. His crime? Oppose Putin and denounce corruption in the Russian government. Nemtsov is just one of many who have been shot, poisoned, or died in other mysterious circumstances for opposing Putin. The men who shot Nemtsov had ties to Chechnya, including the cousin of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. His cousin, Zaur Dadayev, confessed to Nemtsov’s murder. It is generally believed that Putin’s associates, if not Putin himself, were behind Boris Nemtsov’s murder. And why not? Putin has a long history of exterminating his opponents. Kadyrov is mainly employed by Putin to prevent Chechens from killing Russians. In fact, a liberal politician named Ilya Yashin, friend of Nemtsov, said that she “cannot imagine that these men could commit such a terrible crime without, at least, informing …” Putin.
The point is, Kadyrov is above Russian law. Any attempt by Putin or anyone else to remove him from office or prosecute him would lead to another war with Chechnya. This leaves Putin’s hands tied. He may be afraid of Kadyrov to some extent, however, he keeps him close to him in order to have an eye and a minimum of control over him. Putin said Kadyrov was like a son to him. Kadyrov called Putin his idol. They meet regularly. Politically, they are almost identical. In Chechnya, Ramzanism is quite identical to Putinism. They are both violent and encourage kleptocracy and nationalism.
Is Ramazan Kadyrov an uncontrollable killer that Vladimir Putin cannot control? Or is Ramzan an out-of-control killer operating on Putin’s orders?
The Chechen nation is Muslim. When Putin became prime minister in 1999, conquering Chechnya was high on his to-do list. Putin needed a local in Chechnya to help him. This person was Akhmad Kadyrov, the mafia leader of his country. The Chechen militia organized by Kadyrov worked alongside Russian troops to crush the country. When Putin won the presidency of Russia in 2000, he owed it to Chechnya, and more specifically Akhmad Kadyrov. Ramzan is Akhmad’s son.
On May 9, 2004, Akhmad was assassinated. Putin met Ramzan the same day his father was murdered. Putin had an open place for a Chechen governor and Ramzan was perfect for the job. In 2007, Ramzan, then 31, became President of Chechnya. Three years later, in 2010, Ramzan decided that he no longer wanted to be president of Chechnya, instead he was not to be called the “head of the republic”. In Farsi this is called king. Ramzan lives like a king. Ramzan has several palaces, he trained with Mike Tyson, he partied with the French actor Gérard Depardieu. He oversees beauty pageants and wrestling matches. He is active on Instagram.
Ramzan is vicious, vulgar and very rich. He introduced a new government policy whereby anyone fighting against the government would have their homes destroyed and be exiled from the country.
After the wars between Russia and Chechnya, Grozny was devastated. The Russian army defeated the Chechen militia to subdue it. At least 8,398 Russian members of their army have died. Between 150,000 and 300,000 Chechen deaths occurred during the wars. Today’s Grozny is very different from 2000. Ramzan Kadyrov spent BILLIONS to rebuild the city. Downtown Grozny City is full of skyscrapers, including a hotel that is said to be the only place in the Muslim country to serve alcohol. The tallest tower in Grozny City has a scrolling message that reads, “WE LOVE THE PROPHET MOHAMMED.” There is a portrait of Akhmad Kadyrov above the scrolling message. Grozny City is also home to a museum dedicated to the life of Akhmad Kadyrov. Much of the money for turning the town of Grozny into a tribute to the violent and vicious Kadyrov family came from the Russian government. Chechnya still receives around $ 700 million a year from Russia.