Daily Review: Putin Seeks Vengeance After Moscow Attack

Daily Review: Putin Seeks Vengeance After Moscow Attack
A Russian servicemen secures an area as a massive blaze seen over the Crocus City Hall on the western edge of Moscow, Russia, March 22, 2024 (AP photo by Dmitry Serebryakov).

Four men accused of carrying out the attack on a Russian concert hall on Friday, which killed at least 137 people and injured 145 more, appeared before a Moscow court yesterday on terrorism charges, showing signs of severe beatings. The attack has been claimed by the Khorasan branch of the Islamic State, or IS-K, which is mainly active in Afghanistan. (AP)

Our Take

The fact that IS-K was able to stage such a brazen and large-scale attack, even after the U.S. issued a warning about the risk of one occurring just a few weeks before, suggests that Russia’s domestic security is somewhat porous. That may be because the regime of President Vladimir Putin has in recent years focused more on crushing political dissent when it comes to internal threats.

As a result, having failed in protecting the Russian population—a hallmark of Putin’s political brand—Moscow now seems intent on avenging the attack. That can be seen in the treatment of the gunmen Russia has captured. Not only do they show signs of severe torture, but graphic videos of them being beaten while under interrogation have circulated widely on Russian social media. The public display of extralegal violence can be read not only as a perverse message of reassurance for domestic consumption, but also as Moscow highlighting its alternative civilizational model of authoritarian legal norms for an international audience.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.

More World Politics Review