The bombing of Russia’s Domodedovo airport in Moscow, which saw at least 35 people killed and more than 100 injured, was blamed on “Islamic terrorists” from the Caucasus region.
This may or not be the case, but what is certain is that the people of the Caucasus have reason to oppose Russian domination.
Even the Russian president Dmitry Medvedev admitted that the region is racked with “corruption, unemployment and poverty”.
It is populated by a patchwork of nationalities and ethnic groups that have been caught for centuries in wars between empires.
There is a long history of national oppression in the region. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, independence movements in the region have been met with brutality, most notoriously of all in the repeated attempts to destroy Chechen independence.
The Russian invasion of 1999 saw Chechen cities flattened and some 80,000 Chechens killed.
The crushing of the Chechnya rebellion meant resistance to Russian domination has spread across a number of states in the region.
Russia’s prime minister, Vladimir Putin, is the former KGB colonel and the butcher of Chechnya.
Putin has repeatedly used the “war on terror” as an excuse to brutally crack down on separatist forces—and could do so again.