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The Making of a New Empire by Putter, Jos de

Khozh-Ahmed Noukhaev is a warlord and leader of the Chechen independence movement. Acclaimed film director Jos de Putter got the illustrious guerilla leader to cooperate for this stirring documentary, which tells his side of the story of archaic and anarchic Chechnya and its struggle for independence. We follow the hero of many as he travels to remote Chechen villages where he solves local problems and disputes. We also follow him on his trips abroad to negotiate the control of the trans-Caucasian oil pipeline so vital to the Chechen economy.

Khozh-Ahmed Noukhaev is one of Chechnya's most charismatic leaders and freedom fighters. From the Russian point of view, however, Nouchaev is a terrorist who is wanted dead or alive. The film shows the dashing leader touring strategically sensitive Checnya as if he were a feudal lord. He doles out $100 bills to villagers, makes grandiose plans for the bombed-out capital of Grozny, and casually dismisses world leaders.

Historic & Political Interest
Twenty-five years ago, Khozh-Ahmed Noukhaev founded a Moscow-based underground movement, which later gained notoriety as the Chechen mafia. To Chechens, however, this movement was the crucible of liberation. Noukhaev is a prime example of the bandit-warrior. He has multiple identities godfather, escaped convict, war hero, publicity hound, and visionary. Here we learn his personal story, and through him we also learn about the mystical, proud, and violent history of the Chechen people.

Putter, Jos de
Copyright Holder
95 min.
Year of release

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