Dagestan ranked first in the Russian Federation in the number of servicemen killed in action while invading Ukraine.
This is evidenced even by the greatly understated Russian data. As of the moment of publication, there were already 40 identified soldiers killed belonging to the peoples of Dagestan.
The real scale of losses across the republic is unknown. Sources of Kavkaz.Realii in the government of Dagestan have reported at least 130 contract soldiers killed in Ukraine. There are also dead conscripts, whose number remains unknown.
Real statistics with the regional breakdown across Russia is not yet available. However, it is already clear that Dagestan has to pay more for Putin’s whim than many other entities of the Russian Federation.
The reason is that regions such as Dagestan are traditional suppliers of “cannon fodder” for the greatness of the empire. Russian officials have led the republic to one of the lowest scores of social and economic development in Russia: they have the lowest salaries and the highest level of corruption. The situation is further complicated by a high birth rate and total unemployment. The despair pushes young men to pursue a career in the army.
However, it is good to serve in the army in peacetime. In wartime, soldiers die. And in Ukraine, they die a lot.
If we look at the geography of origin of even the 40 personally identified Dagestan soldiers with the ethnic map of the republic, a worrying image emerges. Putin sends representatives of indigenous peoples to Ukraine, to die: Avars, Dargins, Kumyks, Laks, Lezgins, Nogais, Rutuls, Tabasaran, Tsakhurs…
Some of these peoples are already considered minor. For example, there are fewer than 30,000 Rutuls in Dagestan and fewer than 10,000 Tsakhurs. In other words, Putin’s aggression is accompanied not only by genocide against Ukrainians in Mariupol, Kharkiv, or Chernihiv, but will indirectly lead to the ethnocide of minor indigenous peoples of the Caucasus.
This is something that the International Criminal Court in the Hague should also consider.