Veronica Khokhlova has translated a few bits from discussions on Russian live journals. Many thanks to Neeka for making peepholes into the Russian LJ-sphere. There are probably thousands of posts and tens of thousands of comments in the Russian sphere related to the riots in Karelia, but they are all in Russian, and translating LiveJournalese Russian is difficult and time-consuming work.
Among those posts and comments, I have come across one that is still turning my stomach. What if the anti-Chechen riot in Kondopoga was only the first, or one of the first, in a series of increasingly violent and brutal “ethnic” outbursts which the Kremlin is going to provoke or refuse to prevent, in order to have a valid reason to impose a state of emergency by 2008, when Putin’s term runs out — a reason good enough even for Europe and America to accept with minimal tooth-grinding? In this case, the Kremlin’s only problem with Kondopoga is that no Chechens have been killed: the only victims are the Russians killed by the Chechen mob.
In the meantime, Belgium is about to charge eleven Chechen refugees with violent assault for their part in a raid on an Oostende nightclub. Back in late August, about 30 Chechen men, armed with metal rods, baseball bats and golf clubs, attacked a night club in that coastal resort town, robbing the patrons in the process. There are about 200 Chechen refugees living in Ostende, which translates into an impressive 15% rate of participation, as it were.