Ramzanistan. Russia's Chechen Problem
The political activity and growing independence of Chechnya’s leader Ramzan Kadyrov raises questions about his loyalty and the possibility of his openly renouncing his servitude to Moscow. Such a scenario seems unlikely because of the dependence of Kadyrov’s regime on Russia. He is burdened by his republic’s financial dependence, the stain of collaboration and the crimes committed on his own people, and so his regime cannot exist without Moscow’s support. However, Kadyrov’s dependence on Moscow and the apparent stability of the situation in Chechnya do not mean that a lasting peace has been established there. The current plan for governing the republic and the relationship between Moscow and Grozny is a temporary solution, based not on durable solutions, but on the situational convergence of the Kremlin and Kadyrov’s interests. A change of government in the Kremlin, or to an even greater degree a domestic crisis in Russia which weakens its position in the Caucasus, would mean the fall of Kadyrov’s regime, and the reactivation of pro-independence rhetoric in Chechnya.