From the Ingush Front: Intel Units Paved the Way for a Better Jihad

[Mike Honcho]  The Ingush State of the Caucasus Emirate released a statement last week via Kavkaz Center highlighting some its failures and successes since the 2nd Chechen War. While it contained the usual lip service to mujahidin unity and the need to expel the Russians from the Northern Caucasus, it also detailed how, even though outnumbered and outgunned, the establishment of Special Operation Groups (SOG) proved tremendously effective in eliminating apostates, hypocrites, and traitors.

The message begins with an admission of bad judgment, stating that the mujahidin realized they had been too lenient on some of their fellow Ingush who were employed in the Republic’s security and military services. Allegedly there was an unwritten agreement between the mujahidin and local security forces. The agreement was that as long as Muslims and resistance fighters were left alone, the focus of mujahidin attacks would be on the Russians and that state employees would not be bothered. However in 2002, the Ingush collaborators began to target, detain, kill, rape and torture Muslims. Even after these transgressions, the mujahidin claimed that they approached the local authorities to stop such policies, but the abuses continued. The mujahidin then discontinued the gentlemen’s agreement and actively pursued all enemies, Russian and Ingush.

The Ingush mujahidin also state that what has been most effective for their operations is the establishment of special intelligence units, called Special Operation Groups (SOG), which were responsible for collecting information and infiltrating the Ingush security apparatus. One of the groups successful initiatives is that they have also started (or stolen) a database full of the names of collaborators who work with the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. Apparently these units have served their purpose so well that they have Ingush police and politicians shaking in their boots. The local forces are now reportedly resorting to bribing the mujahidin with money and information in order for guarantees of personal security.

Interestingly, the message also refers to a centralized “Mukharabat of the Caucasus Emirate.” It now appears that this is the central command for all intelligence units throughout the Emirate, but with each ‘state’ in charge of its own collection efforts.

What is striking about this message and others written recently is that all of elements of the Caucasus Front seem to be in-lock step with their “unity” message. Both the Chechen Front and the Dagestani Front (Jamaat Shariat) released similar messages last week, detailing support for Dokku Umarov’s declaration and highlighting the preparedness and high morale of their forces. It looks as if Umarov is really pushing to retool the Caucasus Emirate into a highly effective fighting force, at least in word.

Although Umarov’s upbeat prognosis of the Emirate needs to be taken with a dose of salt, it make you wonder if the FSB’s declaration of imminent “al-Qaeda” attacks is, perhaps, somewhat credible.


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2 Responses

  1. It’s interesting that they refer to a “Mukhabarat of the Caucasus Emirate.” Given that they purport to be an organization representing people’s of the Caucasus, one might think they could have come up with a different word than “Mukhabarat” which, after all, is Arabic.

    Perhaps they wanted to avoid using a Russian word and there’s nothing appropriate in Chechen, Ingush, Avar or other relevant Caucasian languages?

  2. MSout,

    I agree with you. If you follow the Caucasus resistance movements from the 1st Chechen War, you see a gradual Islamization of the groups. Initially they were predominately nationalists (e.g. Dudaev was a General in the Soviet Air Force), but as the years dragged on, the groups adopted increasingly militant Islamist ideology and language.

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