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  Syed Shahabuddin and Chechnya  


By: Dr.Dipak Basu
December 03, 2004
(The author is a Professor in International Economics at Nagasaki University, Japan)

Mr.Syed Shahabuddin is a member of parliament and a self-styled leader of the Muslim Indians. He is the editor of The Mille Gazette, the organ of the Muslim Indians. He has responded to my article published in The Statesman on 6-7 October, an expanded version of which was published in The India Cause (
The Conflict of Chechnya: The cause). I have sent my reply to The Mille Gazette, but I am sure they will never publish it. What he has said is given below along with my reply.

Shahabuddin responds to Basu’s articles on Chechnya in The Statesman

The Milli Gazette, November 27, 2004

Prof. Dipak Basu’s articles on Chechnya Conflict (6-7 October, 2004) cover a wide ground – the origin of the Chechens, the long conflict between Turkey and Russia for the control of the Caucasus, the rise of Wahabism in the Muslim world and the increasing dependence of Russia on its oil and gas exports, some of which, though in decreasing measure, passes through Chechnya. Yet the most important political facts are that the Chechens, whatever their origin, constitute a nation in every sense of the term and occupy a territory which they have occupied and defended for centuries, that Russia itself recognized Chechnya as an Autonomous Republic, that historically the Chechens have been engaged in continuous struggle against Russian imperialism for their national liberation since late 19th century and that the Russian invasion of Chechnya (in which Grozny was reduced to a rubble) in 1993 was followed by a treaty between Russia and Chechnya which conceded independence of Chechnya, to be confirmed after a referendum 5 years later.

Putin’s turnaround and invasion of Chechnya in 1999 had a political motive and has been marked by vicious violations of human rights and international law. Pushed to the wall, the Chechens, a valiant people, have responded with terrorism and guerrilla warfare. But their spirit of freedom has not been crushed. Putin has failed to pacify them and the Chechen war of liberation goes on.

All other ‘facts’ are irrelevant; the origin of the Chechens, the support for Al Qaida or participation of Wahabist warriors or Western economic interest.

It is doubtful if loss of Chechnya would weaken Russia to the extent Prof. Basu anticipates but it will surely destroy Putin who has proved himself to be a past master in state terrorism and used the same methods as Stalin did at his worst. Russia today has little democracy, no rule of law, no freedom. What the Russians do to Putin or how they run the Russian State politically and economically is their affair. But there is no justification at all for imperialism and no acceptance of any right of conquest, in the 21st century.

No words are adequate to condemn the Belsan outrage. But has anyone counted the hundreds of thousands of men, women and children Putin has killed in Chechnya? Friends of Chechnya should urge the Chechens not to touch the non-combatants but should also sensitize the world opinion to the sufferings of the Chechens and to the massive violation of human rights and international law in the very heart of Europe.

Yours faithfully,


I have replied to him as follows:


Mr.Shahabuddin’s response, published in The Mille Gazette on 27 November, to my article published in The Statesman on the problem in Chechnya, is full of factual mistakes and rhetorical nonsense.

Chechnya under Dudayev has declared independence in 1991 when the Soviet Union broke down. Russians did nothing even when the Chechens and their Muslim cousin Abkhazians has created an Islamic republic by killing about 50,000 Christian Georgians and expelling more than 400,000 Christians from north Georgia by creating the independent Islamic Republic of Abkhazia. Then the Chechens have violently taken over a number of banks and hotels in Moscow. Progress Bank, the bank of the Russian Academy of Sciences is the first victim, then Olympic Hotel in Moscow. Even foreign investors could not escape; the American manager of the hotel Radisson Slavinskaya in Moscow was murdered by the Chechens. Thereafter Chechens have started taken over all the market stalls all over Russia by just killing the existing owners. Chechens then exporting oil stolen from the pipelines that pass through Chechnya and some of the Russian oligarchs, who since then have escaped to Britain and Israel, have helped the Chechen to earn huge fortune to recruit more terrorists from various Islamic countries.

Their reign of terror ended when in 1993-94 after much deliberation Russian army was sent to Chechnya to control these groups of bandits. The war lasted until 1996, when the Muslim prime minister of Russia Victor Chernomeerdin signed a treaty to give autonomy to Chechnya. During 1996 to 1999 Chechnya was practically independent and the Chechens have taken advantage of that to attack the neighboring Daghestan (people there are Muslims but not Chechens) and South Russia (Krasnodar-Rostov area of Don Cossacks), killing people in the hospitals, kidnapping people for ransom and beheading them in front of video cameras and sending these to the Russian TV stations to create terrors. The so-called Muslim opinion of the world was silent, with both Pakistan and Arab states providing financial and military supplies to the Chechens. In desperations in 1999, Russia again has sent its army to control the situation.

Chechens are not, as I have explained in detail in my article, the original people of Chechnya, but remains of the Turkish colonialists who have occupied the Caucasus area about 400 years ago. If the Chechens have their right to form a separate nation, then it was perfect for the South African whites to declare a separate country. There would be nothing wrong with the Jewish people to have expanded Israel; or Chinese to occupy forever Tibet and Eastern Turkistan; or indeed for the Americans if they want to stay in Iraq or in Afghanistan permanently. Does Shahabuddin think that the Muslims only have the right of conquest?

Russian attack on the Ottoman Empire was a war of liberations for the subjugated Christians in the Caucasus and throughout Eastern Europe during the second half of 19th century. That was time when Bulgaria, Ukraine, Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, and Greece got their independence from the Turks. The Chechens then had accepted Russian rule and prospered until 1991, when they went back to their original habit of banditry, hostage taking, killings, and rape, exactly what the Islamic terrorists are doing in Kashmir.

Russians have done their best to integrate the Chechens to the Soviet society. Grozny during the Soviet time was a prosperous city with several universities and a hub of the chemical industries. The Speaker of the Russian parliament until 1993 was a Chechen, Ruslan Hazbullatov. Chechens have enjoyed all facilities just like any other citizens of the Soviet Union. If they have not taken up the sword of Islam, they could stay in peace just like any other Muslims in Russia today.

Shahabuddin said there is no rule of law in Russia etc. Is India any better? Is there any rule of law in India, particularly in Bihar, where politicians can murder as many as they like, steal as much as they can, rape women and children, give away public property to their friends and relatives in the name of privatizations; where judicial system hardly exist, police forces are nothing but organized criminals? Would that give justifications for the Muslims in India in every districts and sub-districts (Chechnya is not any bigger than an average district in India) to declare independence to create Islamic republics?

Is that the reason Shahabuddin have never said a word to support the Hindu refugees from Kashmir in 1992 or Buddhists and Hindu refugees from Bangladesh in recent years? If the Chechens or the Muslims of Kashmir have the right of self-determination, why do you deny that right to the Buddhists in Chittagong Hill Area of Bangladesh, Baluchs in Pakistan’s Baluchistan or Pushtuns in the North West Frontier, Buddhists in Chinese occupied Tibet, Muslims in Chinese occupied Eastern Turkistan, Hindus in Kashmir valley, non-Muslims in Sudan, and the Tamils in Sri Lanka.

Shahabuddin said, Chechens, as a group is a separate nation. Indeed, Jinnah has articulated in his infamous Lahore declaration in August 1940, that Muslims in India form a separate nation and Hindu-Muslim problem is an international problem. By organizing the greatest killing on earth in 1946-48, a separate homeland for the Muslims of India was created in Pakistan, from where non-Muslims were brutally evicted. As a Hindu, whose relatives were victims of that mass murder organized by the Muslim League, I have the right to raise the question to Shahabuddin and all Muslim Indians, when your separate homeland Pakistan is already created, why do you still live in India! Go to your homelands Pakistan and Bangladesh and support the Chechens as much as like, who is going to stop you!

Is it because, Muslim Indians want to have their cake and eat it? The real motive is much more serious. If Shahabuddin supports the Chechens separatists, what would stop him to support the Muslims in Assam, West Bengal, Bihar, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh if they declare independence? In that case, India will be disintegrated just like the former Yugoslavia. Where will the non-Muslims of India then go? That is also the reason why Russia cannot give independence to the Chechens. By supporting the Chechens, Shahabuddin is proving that he does not believe that the non-Muslims in Russia, India, Serbia, Macedonia, Thailand, Philippines, countries along the fault-line, have any right to exist; they must accept Dar-Ul-Islam or perish.

Islamic imperialism is just as oppressive as the British imperialism or American imperialism or Chinese imperialism. Shahabuddin should not try to justify it in the name of the right of self-determination of the Muslim Chechens. At least 45,000 people in Kashmir have paid in terms of their lives for that false doctrine of the right of self-determination.

Let different people of different religions and ethnic origins live in peace and harmony. If the Muslims want to live separately, they can do so in their own domains in the Middle East and North Africa. They must not try to destroy other countries, as they did in Yugoslavia, to create Islamic republics by killing the non-Muslims. That is what the Chechens in Russia, Arabs in Sudan, and the Islamic terrorists in Kashmir are doing. They do not deserve any support from any sensible person.


Prof. Dr.Dipak Basu, Professor in Economics, Nagasaki University, Japan.

The Chechen problem is related to the general efforts of the Islamic terrorists all over the world to destroy non-Muslim countries. India is the main victim of that war. It is essential that all patriotic Indian should oppose these efforts to destroy our country in the way Yugoslavia was destroyed. The problem of Kashmir is not going to be solved through diplomatic efforts unless Indian policy makers can understand the real issue, the unresolved issue of the partition of India in 1947. The issue is, why the Muslims are still in India when their separate homelands, Pakistan and Bangladesh are created. In any other country anywhere in the world, there would be an exchange of population after a partition. Why is it that in India, no exchange of population has ever taken place; but only the one-way transfer of the non-Muslim population from Pakistan to India was implemented? Time has arrived to raise this question to the Indian politicians who are blind to the impending danger of the fact that already in India several places are now turned into Muslim majority areas due to continuous infiltrations of the Muslims from both Pakistan and Bangladesh. It will not take much time, when India will be reduced to Yugoslavia or Lebanon when the Muslim League, which has created Pakistan by killing the non-Muslims, is sharing power in the central government in India. It is like, as if, the German NAZI party sharing power in the government of Israel. However, the people of India are still asleep.

Dr.Dipak Basu

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Previous by:
Dr.Dipak Basu

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The Conflict of Chechnya: The cause September 13, 2004

A Solution for the Kashmir Problem August 16, 2004


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