The Fire Below


Fire-SchaeferContributed by leading experts, this unique study looks at the impact of the Caucasus on the development of the Russian Federation and its influence on the evolution of Russia’s federal relations.

Essays first examine the effect of the two Chechen wars on the evolution of Russia’s political system, from Georgia’s involvement in the Caucasian wars to the arrival of Jihad in the North Caucasus. They also explore the ensuing expansion of the Kremlin’s -and Putin’s—power and Russia’s policies towards Islam in the region. The security, political, and environmental challenges posed by the Olympic Games in Sochi are discussed as this project, strongly supported by Putin, has caused indigenous population to unite in protest and outrage. The book concludes by looking at how Russia’s recentralization has brought on regional problems of political corruption and Islamist extremism that in turn contribute to authoritarian trends in Russian federalism.

This groundbreaking work highlights the complex dynamics between the Caucasus and the Federation, demonstrating how Russian politics have been profoundly affected by developments in the North Caucasus since 1980.

(Chapter 4, the effects of the Chechen Wars on the Russian military, was contributed by Robert W. Schaefer and Andrei Doohovskoy)

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