Watching Russia

Novaya Gazeta Reports Point-Blank Execution of Chechen ‘Attackers’ at Odds with Official Account of ‘Clash’ with National Guards

March 25, 2017

When Russian media reported March 24 that 6 National Guardsmen and 6 militants were killed in a “shoot-out” in Chechnya, it was a typical story with scant details. Now Novaya Gazeta has evidence the Chechens were executed point-blank, contradicting the official report.

How Many Russians Are Fighting for ISIS? A Brief History of The Kremlin’s Arbitrary Numbers

December 20, 2016

Reports of precise numbers and accounts of tracking Islamist fighters as they leave Russia and return open up the question of how much the FSB controls these fighters, not only to gather intelligence but to perform missions.

Attacks on Russian Journalists Indicate Return to Soviet Practices, New Forms of Repression in the Internet Age

October 4, 2016

What Has Kadyrov Been Up To? Quietly Cultivating Regional and Kremlin Officials; Now a Meeting with Putin

August 26, 2016

It’s been many weeks since Ramzan Kadyrov, acting president of the Chechen Republic, has been in the news. Now late tonight after months of quietly rallying his own troops and cultivating regional and lower-level Kremlin officials, he has obtained an audience with President Vladimir Putin himself,