ultimate objective was not just the secession of Chechnya from
Russia. He sought to transform the entire North Caucasus into an
Islamic republic, in which Chechnya would play a preeminent role.
Dudayev’s imperial cravings could have resulted in the secession of
the entire Russian North Caucasus with a population of some
twenty-five million, including Chechnya, Dagestan, Ingushetia, and
implementation of these messianic ambitions could have led to a
major conflagration in the Transcaucasian region as a whole, where
Islam is by no means the dominant religion.
swayed by the arguments of his advisers that it was preferable to
nip the contagion in the bud in the territory of Chechnya before it
spread to the whole of the area.
Russia’s consent to Chechnya’s secession could have sparked a
separatist chain reaction, threatening to engulf not just North
Caucasus, but numerous ethnic territories in other parts of the
Russian Federation, including the ethnic-national republics of
Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, Kalmykiya, Buryatiya, Tuva, and Yakutiya.