News about involvement of two Chechen brothers in the deadly Boston Marathon bombings has provoked mixed reaction in Russia's North Caucasus region. Web users have been quick to react to the news. Some social media users slammed the brothers, saying that their actions would reinforce negative stereotypes against Chechen. Many others, however, argued that the Russian special services could be behind the blasts. Some even suggested that the explosions were Moscow's response to the Magnitskiy list.
Chechenpress.org, the website of the separatist Chechen government in exile in London, has also expressed their views on the terror act. In their report they suggest that the Tsarnayev brothers had been recruited by the Russian special services:
This is how Russian President Vladimir Putin and Moscow-backed Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov decided to include all Russian nationals in the Magnitskiy list, so that their bloody faces get lost in the crowd. It is without doubt that after such terrorist acts perpetrated by Russia, the USA will be forced to restrict issuing visas for all Russian nationals since it takes a lot of time and effort to figure out who are Russian FSB (Federal Security Service) agents and who are not.
Reaction on the internet
There are some translations of comments and tweets by Caucasian and Russian web users.
"Is it courageous to blow up innocent people at a marathon, to drop a bomb among women and children? What did the Americans do wrong for these guys except for allowing them to enter their country as refugees, giving them protection, shelter and education?" Ingush blogger "Tamerson" wrote on his LiveJournal blog on April 19.
"Did anybody have any doubts about this??? Of course, Nokhchii [Chechens] are guilty of everything!!! In short, the FSB works well …" unnamed user wrote sarcastically on a rebel website.
"Would you call the theory of 'Russia's response to the Magnitskiy List through a terrorist act in #Boston' a delirium?!?" a Twitter user named "Olga" wondered.
"What a cunning plan by Putin and Kadyrov — they sent the militant to USA," Twitter user "NikolassLambert" said in Russian.
"This is somebody's order for starting some uncertain actions in the North-Caucasus-Russia-American affairs. Why else would a 19-year old Chechen carry out a terrorist blast at the Boston marathon? Time will show everything," a user named "Mr Cavalli" commented an article in Dagestani Daily.
"There is justice in the world indeed! Sooner or later support for the Ichkerian Chechen 'rebels,' likewise harboring them, should have turned out badly for the regime in Washington. All these ilyas akhmadovs [Ilyas Akhmadov is former minister of the secular "Chechen Republic of Ichkeria" who lives in exile in the USA] will build an emirate in the area where the USA is," a user named "Fedor Romodanovskiy" wrote on ria.ru website.
"It was apparently Chechens who dropped a nuclear bomb on Japan; Titanic was also submerged by Chechens. A herd of kangaroos were also killed by us in Australia …" a user named "gorec_097" wrote sarcastically on Chechen leader RamzanKadyrov's Instagram account.
"Terrorists who carried out the Boston terrorist act are from the North Caucasus! Why am I not surprised to hear this!! Not surprised at all!!!" a user named Art Manz wrote on Twitter.
"I feared that terrorists would be said to be Russians, but no: Spanish press headlines are using the word 'Chechens,' not 'Russians,'" a user called "a_vishnevskiy" wrote on Twitter in Russian.
"The Boston terrorist act once again exposed the USA's helplessness," a Twitter user named "Lyusha" wrote.
In the meantime, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov said in his interview with Russian NTV that he has already expressed his condolences to the American people. "Any attempts to link Tsarnayevs with Chechnya are simply unavailing efforts. They grew up in the USA, their personalities were formed there. Therefore, it would be appropriate to look for the evil in the U.S. not in Chechnya. We should fight terrorism all together. We, as a nation know it better than anyone else. Yet, I still reiterate, we have nothing to do with Tsarnayev brothers. They grew up and were educated in the USA," Kadyrov emphasized.
Chechnya was torn by two wars with Russia. Chechens allegedly committed a number of terror attacks in Russia. For now, the republic has been entirely rebuilt by Ramzan Kadyrov who is also in Magnitskiy list; he built the biggest mosque in Europe in the capital city of Chechnya, Grozny. So far, the republic has become one of the most stable regions in Russia's North Caucasus. Followers of Wahabbism (and ultra-conservative branch of Islam) are in war with Russian security services and Kadyrov. Rebel groups are hiding in mountainous parts of the republic.
One way or another, this accident will have a very negative impact on ordinary Chechen refugees living in Europe and USA. And in the end, let's remember 9/11, and a statement by the Russian President Vladimir Putin. During that period of time Russia was killing thousands of innocent Chechen children, women and men because Chechnya wanted to be separated from Russia. Chechens were fighting against mighty Russia. 9/11 helped Putin to silence the world because Putin depicted Russia as a victim in hands of terrorists, saying that there is little difference between the USA and Russia since both are suffering because of terrorism. And then, he announced that Russia would join the fight against global terrorism. Chechens were terrorists against whom Putin has been fighting and now this accident has just helped Putin to defend his position.