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U of M professor offers perspective on Chechnya

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History professor Dr. Thaddeus Radzilowski offered his perspective on Chechnya. History professor Dr. Thaddeus Radzilowski offered his perspective on Chechnya.
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Dr. Thaddeus Radzilowski, a professor of Russian history at the University of Michigan, gave us some perspective on Chechnya, a Muslim region in Russia and the homeland of terror suspects Tamerlan Tsarnaev and his brother, Dzhokhar.

"The Chechens have been fighting for their own freedom, their own independence, for over two centuries," he said.

And so the battles have been bloody and deadly.  The Chechens are accused of terror attacks against Russia in their fierce fight for independence.  Russia has waged two wars as recently as the 1990s.

"The wars are brutal.  Mass graves are still being found all over Chechnya.  Half a million people are refugees," Radzilowski said.

The brothers are among those refugees, and even though it appears they were given every opportunity America has to offer, Radzilowski said they may have become radicalized in the jihadist movement that has become more prominent in Chechnya in recent years.

"Some of the Chechens have begun to identify their cause, their oppression, with the oppression of Islam all over the world," Radzilowski explained.  "Terror is indiscriminate, and, in fact, it's always a weapon of the weak."

All of which will be investigated and analyzed in the days, weeks and even years to come.

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