Russia has been at war with Chechnya twice since 1991, and Chechnya has been involved with the gravest of national crises that Russia has faced since the end of the Cold War. Yet, Chechnya has never received any sustained international attention. One reason for this is that many of the activists and journalists who sought to shine light on the region have been killed.
In this context, the book 'Subjugate or Exterminate!: A Memoir of Russia's Wars in Chechnya' (Academica Press, 2019) by Akhmed Zakayev, the London-based Chechen leader whom Russia has long sought to extradite from the UK, provides a fresh account of the past quarter of a century. It also provides a unique firsthand account; Zakayev fought in both of the Chechen wars, and was variously a minister, a military commander, a negotiator, and a presidential candidate.
The Henry Jackson Society is delighted to invite you to a fascinating panel discussion with dissident and Prime Minister of the Chechen Republic's government in exile, award-winning translator Dr Arch Tait, the book's publisher Dr Paul du Quenoy, and foreign correspondent Luke Harding on the subject of Akhmed Zakayev’s recent book ‘Subjugate or Exterminate!’: A Memoir of Russia's Wars in Chechnya (Academica Press, 2019), which relates a major participant's role in Russia's conflict with Chechnya.
Akhmed Zakayev is Prime Minister of the Chechen Republic's government in exile. Zakayev was first trained as an actor and became the chairman of the Chechen Union of Theatrical Actors in 1991. A veteran of the First Chechen War, Zakayev was one of the signatories of the Chechen-Russian peace treaty when it was signed in 1997 and served as Chechen deputy prime minister after the war. When Russia attempted to implicate him in the planning of the Moscow theater siege in 2002, a British court refused to extradite Zakayev. He was granted political asylum in 2003. Zakayev leads a political movement which both opposed the turn in Chechen militancy towards Islamism an the current Russian-backed Chechen government of Ramzan Kadyrov. Between the Chechen Wars he co-authored a book, Wahhabism, The Kremlin's Remedy Against National Liberation Movements, positing a link between Soviet Union support for terror groups and dictatorial states and political Islam's growth. It was discovered in 2008 that Zakayev was targeted for assassination along with friend and acquaintance, Alexander Litvinenko, who was murdered by polonium-210 poisoning in 2006. He continues to campaign for Chechen independence from exile in London, and Russia continues to attempt his extradition. His recent book, Subjugate or Exterminate!: A Memoir of Russia's Wars in Chechnya' seeks to provide a personal telling of the Chechen conflict.