by Gordon M. Hahn
In an interview for a new Russian documentary, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that in the early 2000s Russian intelligence intercepted calls between U.S. intelligence operatives in Azerbaijan and the Chechen separatists of the so-called Chechen Republic of Ichkeriya (ChRI), against whom Moscow fought two wars, proving that Washington was aiding the insurgents. He gave no specific details on the times or the nature of the assistance, except to say that the intercepts occurred in the early 2000s and that US intelligence was helping the insurgents with transportation.
Putin said he confronted then-U.S. President George W. Bush on the issue and the latter promised to “kick the ass” of the intel officers involved. In the end, however, Putin said the FSB received a letter from their “American counterparts” who claimed their right to “support all opposition forces in Russia,” including the Islamic separatists in the Caucasus…
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