Monday, November 9, 2015

ISIS Fighters Returning to Azerbaijan Seen Creating Serious Problems for Baku

Having submitted a reader commentary on ISIS Fighters Returning to Azerbaijan Seen Creating Serious Problems for Baku on Paul Goble's blog, it soon became clear that no comments submitted are posted, even though I saw a "Your comment will be visible after approval". One need only view the scores of other postings to note the lack of comments. My comment is below:

An interesting overview. It seems Baku has itself a problem. Azerbaijani authorities are very good in incarcerating political and media opponents yet somehow allowed over 1500 jihadists to leave the country to destabilize Syria. This no doubt pleased their brothers in Ankara. The Baku Sultanate has to: eliminate these jihadists, face the possibility of plunging the country into an unwinnable war with Armenia or an internal conflict, prevent the formation of an insurgent alliance with other Caucasian jihadists just over its expansive northeastern border or any and all of the aforementioned. In addition, these 1500+ jihadists can easily enter the Azerbaijani-populated Marnueli and even Adjar regions of Georgia.

Given the amount of intensely bellicose anti-Armenian rhetoric that has been pumped into its people for almost a generation, Baku should have expected somebody might actually believe the propaganda. Perhaps Baku can ask its oft-noted strategic partner, Israel, to provide identification information on these 1500+ jihadists.

Azerbaijan once tried recruiting Chechen warriors and Afghan mujaheddin, among others including Ukrainians, to fight the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh. Chechen warriors walked away noting Azerbaijanis didn't want to fight. Shamil Basayev stated that he and his Chechen battalion had only been defeated once, and that came in Nagorno-Karabakh. The Armenians sent the Afghan mujaheddin back to Kabul in kafan shrouds.

For an ISIL cell(s) to exist in Azerbaijan, beyond the reach of its omnipotent security services, is somehow doubtful.

Yerevan, Armenia