Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
August 18, 1999
Last Updated :
March 20, 2011
War In Chechnya And Yeltsin's Bluff, Russian Terrorist Bomb Blasts, Government Psychological Manipulation, Trouble In The Two Koreas, China And Taiwan's Posturing And Rhetoric, Fork-Tongued Hagglers Of The Middle East Peace Process
Scenes From The War In Chechnya
The Clinton White House obviously recognizes the current vulnerability and weakness of Russia; thus, it is attempting to expand its sphere of influence in Eastern Europe while it still can. To add to Russia's woes, during the past several months, the Kremlin has once again been forced into sending Russian Federation troops into the troublesome region of the northern Caucasus, in order to quell a revolt by Muslim separatists in the republic of Dagestan. These rebels have been receiving military aid from their Muslim brothers in Chechnya, who have also been enjoying de facto independence since several years ago. Latest news reports are indicating that the war in the northern Caucasus has now expanded; and after weeks of a heavy air and ground assault, the Russian Federation troops have completely surrounded Grozny, the capital of Chechnya, and are threatening to destroy anyone who fails to leave the besieged city, as we see by these CNN news clips:
----- Begin Quotes -----
General Says Warning Grozny A Humane Move
Leaflets dropped on the Chechen capital telling civilians to leave by Saturday or face massive bombardment were a humanitarian warning, not an ultimatum, the Russian commander in Chechnya said Tuesday. The messages warn Grozny residents to leave the city by December 11. "There will be no more talks. All those who do not leave the city will be destroyed. The countdown has started," the leaflet said.
. . .
Russian Ultimatum: Get Out Of Grozny Or Die
Russia's military dropped leaflets around Grozny on Monday, tersely warning residents they have five days to leave the Chechen capital or face certain death. "Those who remain will be viewed as terrorists and bandits," said the leaflet, read on Russian television. "They will be destroyed by artillery and aviation. There will be no more talks." The leaflet promised a safe exit corridor.
. . .
Russian Forces Bombard Northern Edge Of Chechen Capital
Russian forces launched a fierce bombardment of Chechen positions Tuesday, with troops approaching the fringe of the separatist republic's capital, Grozny. Meanwhile, Russian authorities sought to capture a key rebel leader by offering a $1 million bounty for his arrest. Russian jets and artillery pounded at least seven towns and settlements across Chechnya, officers on both sides said.
. . .
Chechen President Talks Peace, Readies For War
Russian artillery and warplanes pressed their attacks around Chechnya's capital on Sunday, while the Chechen president called for urgent negotiations to end the fighting. The Russian commander in Chechnya, Col. Gen. Viktor Kazantsev, said Sunday his forces had taken a strategic ridge about 35 kilometers (21 miles) northwest of Grozny, on the south side of the Terek River that marks the northern third of Chechnya.
. . .
Russia Pursues Chechen Islamist Campaign
Russia pushed on with its operation to crush Islamist fighters based in rebel Chechnya on Saturday but said it would welcome talks with the region's relatively moderate leader, Aslan Maskhadov. There were conflicting reports over Russian troop movements as officials denied any military offensives had been undertaken near Grozny, where a Reuters correspondent saw Chechen fighters shooting at what appeared to be a military convoy.
. . .
Russia Girds For Second Stage Of Chechen Campaign
Russian troops regrouped Saturday near the Terek River and fortified their positions in advance of what a Russian general said would be the second stage of the campaign against insurgents in Chechnya. A Russian military spokesman said Chechen guerrillas were suffering "serious losses" in the latest fighting. A hospital in the Chechen capital, Grozny, reportedly was filled to capacity with wounded insurgents.
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As we now know, the Kremlin made a last-minute change to its invasion tactics. The deadline for leaving Grozny came and went, and the assault didn't taken place. Instead, the Russian troops waited several more days in order to allow those civilians who still wished to leave Grozny, to exit through the two safe corridors they had opened up for them. This delay in the assault may have been due to the fact that some condemnation has been building up against the Russians in recent weeks. While some nations, like China, strongly feel that Chechnya is an internal Russian affair, others, such as the hawkish United States of America, have offered strong criticism against the government of Boris Yeltsin. Thus, by providing ample opportunity for escape, before undertaking such a brutal task, which may result in the death of many people, Russia's military leaders are trying to give the impression of being fair. However, the time has apparently now passed; and as we see by the following report, the assault on Grozny has begun in earnest:
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Russians Storm Grozny; Witnesses Report Heavy Casualties
GROZNY, Russia (CNN) -- Russian tanks and troops stormed central Grozny late Wednesday but were driven back and suffered heavy casualties at the hands of Chechen rebels, eyewitnesses said. Previously, Russian commanders had insisted they were not ordering an all-out assault on the rebellious republic's capital.
News agencies reported that a Russian armored column rolled into Grozny on Wednesday evening and was surrounded by rebel fighters armed with rocket-propelled grenades. The bodies of several dead Russian soldiers were seen sprawled around burning tanks and armored personnel carriers near the city center, witnesses said.
End Of Quote -----
It is rather alarming to note that in offering his expected rebuttal to President Clinton, Mr. Yeltsin resorted to using the nuclear arms wild card, as we see by these excerpts from another recent CNN news report:
----- Begin Quote -----
Yeltsin Warns U.S. Not To Meddle In Chechnya, Cites Nuclear Weapons
BEIJING (CNN) -- Russian President Boris Yeltsin, noting Russia still possesses nuclear weapons, warned the United States on Thursday not to meddle in the Chechen conflict.
"(U.S. President Bill) Clinton allowed himself to pressurize Russia yesterday," Interfax news agency quoted Yeltsin as saying in reference to Clinton's tough remarks on Chechnya.
"He must have forgotten for a moment what Russia is," Yeltsin, visiting China just days after being released from hospital, added."It has a full arsenal of nuclear weapons."
Other Russian news agencies carried similar reports, saying Yeltsin deliberately stopped to make his remarks after a meeting with Li Peng, chairman of China's National People's Congress. Chinese officials said on Thursday the Chechen conflict is an internal matter of Russia's. Yeltsin and Chinese President Jiang Zemin criticized the United States over what they called an attempt at global domination.
"Jiang Zemin completely understands and fully supports Russia's actions in combating terrorism and extremism in Chechnya," Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said.
Yeltsin's harsh words were an apparent indication that relations between Russia and the United States have strained to perhaps their most tenuous point since the end of the Cold War.
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As I recently mentioned to some online Christian friends, I believe it is safe to say that Yeltsin is only bluffing, and playing the role that he and Clinton both play so well. I honestly cannot see anyone starting WW III over this issue involving sovereign Russian territory. At the very most, the United Nations, under American pressure, may give Russia the routine slap on the wrist by applying economic sanctions, but there really isn't much more that they can do to stop the Russians from bombing Grozny, if that is indeed what they are going to do. Furthermore, how can the West, and the United States and Great Britain in particular, even justify their criticism after what they did to Belgrade and Baghdad? It would be totally hypocritical for them to try to stop the Grozny campaign.
Multiple terrorist strikes in the very heart of the Russian Motherland
To add to Russian troubles, since the last day of August, a series of mysterious bomb blasts, which are all believed to be related to the troubles rooted in Dagestan and Chechnya, have resulted in the untimely death of at least two hundred and forty-four people. Following are a series of news clips from various news agencies regarding the bomb attacks, as well as a few earlier reports which describe the beginning of the current conflict in Dagestan and Chechnya. Please take note that these reports are talking about five separate bomb blast incidents which have all occurred very close to each other within this short time period; that is, one at a shopping mall not far from the Kremlin, one at a military barracks in Buinaksk, Dagestan, another one at a nine-story apartment complex in Moscow, an additional one at an eight- story apartment complex in Moscow, and yet another one at a nine-story apartment complex in Volgodonsk as well:
----- Begin Quotes -----
Attack Number Five :
Apparent Truck Bomb Kills 13 In Southern Russia
MOSCOW (CNN) -- An apparent truck bomb has killed 13 people and injured 115 in the southern Russian city of Volgodonsk. The Russian Emergency Ministry told CNN the blast occurred at an entrance to a 9-story apartment building, destroying its facade. Investigators believe the explosion was caused by a bomb in a truck outside the building.
The Rostov Region Interior Ministry officials said a truck pulled up to the first entrance of the building at approximately 6 a.m., and 15 minutes later there was an explosion.
Attack Number Four :
Security Tight As Death Toll Hits 116 In Moscow Blast
Security forces combed railway stations and markets across Russia on Tuesday as the death toll reached 116 in an explosion that reduced an eight-story apartment building to a heap of bricks, dust and mangled furniture. Rescuers continued to search the wreckage for victims of Monday's suspected bombing in Moscow, the fourth major blast in Russia in the last two weeks. Search crews reached the building's basement, which was full of water from burst pipes. Children's toys floated in the muck.
. . .
Police Blame Bomb For Moscow Blast
A powerful explosion ripped through an apartment building in southern Moscow early Monday, killing at least 34 people and leaving dozens unaccounted for. Rescue workers with sniffing dogs were searching the wreckage of the eight-story building after the blast, which occurred shortly after 5 a.m. (0200 GMT). The explosion follows a blast Thursday that left at least 91 people dead. The Ministry of Emergency Situations said at least 34 people, including a child, were killed in Monday's blast.
Attack Number Three :
At least 23 people were killed and 150 injured when a huge explosion demolished a block of flats in a Moscow suburb early yesterday. The blast, which reduced the nine-story building to smoldering rubble, was said by the authorities yesterday to have been caused by explosives, and not by a gas leak as was at first thought. As the search for bodies continued last night, senior figures, including Yuri Luzhkov, the Mayor of Moscow, were linking the blast to the war in Dagestan . . . The explosion was the second on such a scale in Russia in less than a week . . .
Attack Number Two :
Yeltsin Blames Carelessness Of Military For Reverses
President Boris Yeltsin Tuesday blamed the 'carelessness of the military' for an incursion of Muslim rebels in the southern region of Dagestan and a blast at military apartments in which 61 people died. 'How did we lose a whole district in Dagestan? Why are there more terrorist acts in military compounds than in other places?' Interfax news agency quoted Yeltsin as saying during a meeting with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. 'This can only be explained by the carelessness of the military.'
. . .
Bombing, New Incursion Escalate Dagestan Conflict
Gunmen from the breakaway province of Chechnya seized villages in Dagestan Sunday, hours after a deadly bomb ripped through a building housing Russian military families, an official said. The bombing attack, which officials blamed on the Islamic rebels, killed at least 14 people and injured about 90. A spokesman at Dagestan's Interior Ministry said that local police were battling hundreds of gunman who seized two villages in Novolaksk region in the west of the North Caucasus region.
. . .
Insurgents Seize Dagestan Towns After Deadly Blast
Hundreds of gunmen from the breakaway province of Chechnya seized at least four villages in Dagestan Sunday, hours after a deadly bomb ripped through a building housing Russian military families. The bomb killed at least 14 people and injured 97. Officials blamed the explosion on the Islamic rebels who have been battling Russian forces in the region for the past month.
Attack Number One :
Terrorist Explosion At Shopping Mall Next To Kremlin's Red Square
At least 33 people were injured Tuesday in an explosion that ripped through an upscale Moscow shopping center just outside Red Square. Authorities said terrorists were responsible. Alexandr Zdanovich, a spokesman for the FSB, the Russian domestic security service, said it was clear that the blast, which originated in a video game machine, was the work of 'terrorists.' The explosion forced the evacuation of the busy underground mall and an adjoining area just outside Red Square, authorities said . . . Most of the injured were hurt by flying glass, authorities said. There were no reported deaths in the explosion, which happened just after 8 p.m. (1600 GMT). Authorities said the explosion apparently occurred on the third level of the Manezh Square shopping center, one of Europe's largest . . . Police and fire officials evacuated the complex, just steps away from the Kremlin's northwest wall, after the explosion. Police also cordoned off Manezh Square, nearby underground rail stations and streets . . . Interior Ministry troops were deployed to the area for added security. Security at the Kremlin was put on high alert . . .
. . .
Kremlin Begins Inquiry After Bomb Wounds 41
Russia on Wednesday launched an investigation into a bomb attack which injured 41 people, including several children, at a popular Moscow shopping center next door to the Kremlin. Interfax news agency, quoting Moscow ambulance service, said on Wednesday that 24 of the 41 people injured in Tuesday's blast were still in hospitals. "It is a terrorist act," said Moscow mayor Yuri Luzhkov . . .
The spectre of a 'holy war' spreading to the Russian heartland came a step closer yesterday when a man claiming to speak for Dagestani rebels in the south said that it was behind the bomb blast in a shopping mall yards from the Kremlin. The explosion injured 41 people and tarnished one of the crown jewels of Mayor Yuri Luzhkov's multibillion dollar restoration of Moscow, the giant underground Manezh complex. Fears of a broader terror campaign deepened when a caller to a Western news bureau in Chechnya warned that 'terrorist acts will take place on the territory of Russia as long as Russian troops remain in Dagestan'. The caller claimed to be from the Dagestan Liberation Army . . .
. . .
Russian Troops Cross Into Chechnya
Top Russian officials have confirmed to CNN that Russia is planning a major ground offensive against the breakaway republic of Chechnya. "We expect the leadership in Chechnya to condemn international terrorism," Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said. In addition, Putin, quoted by Itar-Tass news agency on Thursday, said Russian troops have been crossing into Chechnya and do not recognize any border between Russia and the breakaway region.
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From the previous reports, it becomes quite evident that when rich, selfish, centralist governments fail to respond to the outcries of their oppressed peoples, the masses eventually take matters into their own hands, whether their motivations are right or wrong. Given Boris Yeltsin's track record, one fact which appears to be certain, is that unless new Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, is able to bring the Dagestan/Chechnya situation under control, he may find himself unexpectedly joining the ranks of ex-Prime Ministers Sergei Kiriyenko, Yevgeny Primakov and Sergei Stepashin. As of late, Yeltsin does not appear to have very much patience with his underlings; particularly when they show any signs of weakness, or else pose a threat to his own position of power.
What I find particularly interesting regarding this entire situation, is that while the Kremlin has pointed the finger at the Muslim separatists as the perpetrators of the five bomb attacks, the rebels have denied responsibility for the same. Not only that, but now that the Russian government has apparently won the support of the Russian people for its military engagement against the Muslim separatists, the bomb attacks have mysteriously stopped. Similar to other writers, I can only wonder if perhaps at least some of the attacks were staged by the Russian government itself, so that it might win popular support for its current campaign in both Dagestan and Chechyna. We should never underestimate the corrupt, evil nature of man's governments, and what they will do, even to their own people, in order to achieve a certain objective. Playing psychological mind games in order to mold public opinion is nothing new. We see it happening in the American press all the time, do we not?
Turning our eyes towards southeast Asia, the two Koreas are also entering a very dangerous period as Communist North Korea continues to develop its program of weapons of mass destruction, while shunning American warnings, and refusing to give American inspectors access to its weapons plants. At this current time, the government of North Korea already possesses the ability to easily strike targets within Japan, which naturally has the Japanese government quite concerned. In fact, the Japanese are so concerned, that they have been adopting a more militaristic attitude as of late; and this is with encouragement from the United States of course. To understand how serious this is, you must realize that up until the last decade, Japan dedicated just one per cent of its Gross National Product to military expenditures and self-defense. If mass media sources are to be believed, North Korea may soon also be able to strike targets within Alaska and Hawaii as well. As if this weren't enough, on August 23, 1999, the Associated Press issued the following report, in which the North Korean government states that a second Korean War is now unavoidable:
----- Begin Quote ----- Military exercises between the United States and South Korean show the two allies' rising militarism, making a second Korean War 'unavoidable', North Korea said Sunday. In recent days, Pyongyang has regularly said the 12-day joint exercises could lead to war, but it had not called hostilities inevitable. America and South Korea have been conducting war games to simulate a coordinated response to a North Korean invasion as part of their annual joint military exercises. 'The United States and South Korea are in a belligerent relationship,' said an editorial in the Rodong Shinmun, the newspaper of the North's ruling Workers' Party, monitored in Tokyo by the RadioPress News Agency. 'A second Korean War has become unavoidable . . .'
----- End Of Quote -----
At the same time, Communist China has also been flexing its military muscles lately due to the break-away island nation of Taiwan being rather vociferous regarding its independence from the Chinese mainland. Ever since Taiwanese President Lee Teng-hui recently expressed his desire for his country to have 'state-to-state' relations with Beijing, tensions have been extremely high. Both parties have been actively engaged in verbal posturing, and boasting of their military readiness and clear superiority in the event of a military confrontation. As of the time of this writing, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has declared that it will not resort to the use of nuclear weapons, should it indeed become necessary to re-take Taiwan. Despite immense verbal pressure from China, the Taiwanese leadership has made no effort to retract its earlier statements. Following are some fairly recent reports regarding this situation:
----- Begin Quotes -----
President Lee Teng-hui's recent affirmation of Taiwan's statehood is supported by the 'vast majority' of Taiwanese, and there is no question of it being retracted, the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry said Sunday. 'Special state-to-state relations' - the term Lee used to firm up Taiwan's sovereignty claim - was merely 'an objective description of the state of relations and has been embraced by the vast majority of Taiwanese,' the ministry said in a statement. 'This reflects reality, so there is no question of retracting or not retracting,' the statement said. The ministry's statement was one of the most emphatic defenses of Lee's stance to date, and comes after a meeting between President Clinton and Chinese President Jiang Zemin at which Taiwan was a main topic of discussion . . .
. . .
While declaring its resolve to retake rival Taiwan by force if necessary, China removed one threat today by promising not to use nuclear weapons in the event of a conflict. The pledge, issued by the Foreign Ministry, was the most explicit, public renunciation of the nuclear option China has ever given Taiwan and suggested a slight easing of their latest tensions . . .
. . .
Taiwan displayed some of its best defense assets on Wednesday amid tensions with China-advanced fighter jets that military leaders say give the island air superiority against the mainland through at least 2005. The display of cutting-edge fighters was staged to celebrate the founding of the air force academy, but it also seemed calculated to send the message that Taiwan can defend itself and won't be pushed around. 'The air force's successful front line is the secure shield of our nation's defense,' President Lee Teng-hui told air force cadets at the military base that houses the academy near the southern port city of Kaohsiung, 185 miles south of Taipei. Lee's appearance was seen as an attempt to bolster public confidence in the wake of China's renewed threat to use force to bring Taiwan to heel, although he didn't specifically mention the tensions on Wednesday . . .
. . .
China has reached agreement with Russia to buy two nuclear-powered submarines to deter any U.S. presence in the Taiwan Strait as relations between Beijing and Taipei worsen, a report said Wednesday. The billion dollar deal for the Typhoon-class submarines, capable of launching nuclear warheads, was reached during Russian deputy prime minister Ilya Klebanov's recent visit to Beijing, the Hong Kong Standard said citing mainland diplomatic sources. Chinese President Jiang Zemin and his Russian counterpart Boris Yeltsin endorsed the sale during their talks in Bishek, Kyrgyztan, last week, the English-language daily said. The sources said the submarines were aimed at deterring the U.S. Seventh Fleet from intervening in the intensified cross-strait relations following Taiwanese president Lee Teng-hui's call for "state-to-state" ties with Beijing . . .
----- End Of Quotes -----
Directing our attention towards the Middle Eastern arena, if you have been paying close attention to developments in the current land-for-peace process, and if you have been reading my articles concerning Endtime events, then you will already know that the Israelis and the Palestinians continue to play the same game of tug-of-war and verbal deceit which has for some time now been their regular custom. After months of extremely tough bargaining at the negotiation table, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, and Palestinian President, Yasser Arafat, finally signed a revised Wye River Memorandum in Egypt, known as the Sharm el-Sheikh memorandum. While smiles and handshakes abound, Yasser Arafat continues to make clear that unless final status talks are completed by September of the year 2,000, he will unilaterally declare a Palestinian State.
Following are several reports which have been issued by various news agencies over the past few months. As can be seen by the most recent reports, radical elements continue their attempts to derail the peace process through violent bomb attacks, and the Jews and the Palestinians continue to haggle over the issue of land in their on-again-off-again negotiations:
----- Begin Quotes -----
Impasse On West Bank Prevents Handover
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat failed to resolve a dispute holding up Israel's scheduled handover of more West Bank land on Monday, and Israel's army says it won't leave the territory as planned. Israeli military officials said no handover would take place Monday, but added that "anything is still possible" as talks continued Monday morning. Both sides have been locked in a dispute over details of the land involved.
. . .
Mideast Peace Talks Convene Despite Bombs
Undeterred by a Sunday bombing, Israeli delegates and their counterparts from the Palestinian Authority began talks Monday aimed at reaching a final Middle East peace accord. The talks opened Monday morning in the West Bank town of Ramallah, just a day after pipe bombs injured at least 30 people in the Israeli coastal town of Netanya. Issues remaining to be settled include the status of Jerusalem and the future of Jewish settlements on territory Israel has occupied since the 1967 Six-Day war.
. . .
Bomb Injures At Least 16 In Israel
A pipe bomb exploded in a coastal town in Israel, injuring at least 16 people on Sunday, and police were trying to defuse as second device near the scene of the explosion. The bombing occurred on the eve of new peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Police said the bombing was a terrorist act, and a number of suspects have been taken into custody.
. . .
Yassar Arafat, the Palestinian leader, yesterday renewed his threat to unilaterally declare an independent state for his people if he fails to reach agreement with Israel one year from now. He issued the warning just hours after signing a new peace accord with Ehud Barak, the Israeli Prime Minister, in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The new agreement, known as the Sharm el-Sheikh memorandum, sets out an ambitious timetable of just 12 months to resolve almost all the major issues still dividing the two sides. Many observers believe the goal is too ambitious given that Israel and the Palestinians still have to resolve the most contentious issues between them including the future of Jerusalem, which both sides regard as their religious and political capital . . .
. . .
Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat said today that according to the guarantees he got from United States and according to the declaration of Berlin, a Palestinian State will be declared in 2000. Speaking to reporters on his return from a visit to the Vatican, Arafat said that the issue of declaring an independent Palestinian State was included in the declaration of Berlin, 'and in the letter of guarantees that I received from Albright yesterday.'
. . .
Ending months of stalled negotiations, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat signed a breakthrough agreement early Sunday to implement the land- for-security Wye River accord. International dignitaries attending the ceremony, including U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Jordan's King Abdullah II and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, applauded as the two men signed the agreement and embraced.
----- End Of Quotes -----
As we continue our discussion in part three of this series, we will further examine the Middle East peace process, as well as Israeli-Syrian negotiations. In addition, we will be taking a look at other volatile hotspots in the world. This will include the civil unrest which recently plagued East Timor in Indonesia, and the strong desire for independence which has spread to other provinces since then. We will conclude by re-examining terrorist bomb attacks. I trust that you will join me.
⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .