Gordon M. Hahn, RUSSIA'S ISLAMIC THREAT, Yale University Press, 2007
Russia's Islamic Threat
by Gordon M. Hahn
Publication date: 04/30/07
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The notion that the Chechen-led jihad in the North Caucasus is an entirely indigenous affair, far removed from the global Islamist jihad, is perhaps comforting to Americans and other Westerners, but it is a myth. Moreover, the North Caucasus jihad may be the harbinger of a much larger Muslim challenge to Russia's political stability and state integrity. So concludes Gordon M. Hahn in this meticulously researched analysis of Russia's emerging Islamic threat. Hahn draws an explicit picture of an already sophisticated and effective Chechen jihadist network that is expanding the territorial scope of its operations with inspiration and some assistance from the global jihadist movement. Given its proximity to large stockpiles of diverse weapons, the expanding population of Russian-based Islamist terrorists is particular cause for alarm, the author warns. Russia's Islamic Threat lifts the veil on the Muslim challenge to Russia's political stability, national security, and state integrity as well as the potentially grave threat to international and U.S. security. Hahn shows that many of the demographic, historical, socioeconomic, political, and religious factors sparking jihadi revolution in Muslim countries are extant in Russia and are driving revolutionary Islamist terrorism there. In a penetrating conclusion to the book, the author analyzes the policies that have fueled the rise of militant Islam and offers a series of important recommendations for policymakers.
Gordon M. Hahn is senior researcher, Center for Terrorism and Intelligence Studies, Akribis Group, San Jose and author of Russia's Revolution from Above, 1985-2000 and numerous articles on Russia and the former Soviet Union.
"This is a truly remarkable book about one of the world's most dramatic, bloodiest, and least-known conflicts. The book explains how Russia became bogged down in a war over controlling its Muslim Turkic region of Chechnya. It tells the astonishing story of a battle truly symbolic of current world crises: a struggle pitting Islamism, nationalism, the remnants of Communism, and the modern nation-state against each other. Gordon Hahn's total mastery of this complex issue cuts theough the maze to tell a fascinating story.
- Barry Rubin, Director, Global Research in International Affairs Center
"This is a very important work, which will help to fill a major gap in Western scholarship about contemporary Russia. Given the very serious threat posed by Russia-based Islamist terrorists not only to Russia but to the West as well, this gap is indeed not just serious but highly dangerous. Yet for a variety of reasons, very little work on this subject has appeared in English. Dr Hahn's work on this subject entitles him to be regarded as one of the leading experts in the world not only on the Islamist threat as such, but on the entire field of Russia's Muslim-majority regions, their internal politics, and relations between them and the federal centre in Moscow. His book is an extremely useful, detailed guide to all these issues, and will I'm sure be described by many reviewers as indispensable to everyone working not only on Chechnya and the North Caucasus, but on contemporary Russian political and security issues in general. It is superbly researched, and full of insights and intelligent analysis."
- Anatol Lieven, Fellow, New America Foundation and author of Empire: The Russian Empire and Its Rivals
"Hahn provides a groundbreaking source book for everyone concerned with Islamic terrorism in Russia."
- Martin McCauley, Emeritus, University of London