MOSCOW — Donald J. Trump, the leading Republican presidential candidate, was widely condemned when he called for the United States to “take out the families” of terrorists.
His approach — even after he clarified that he was not talking about killing the relatives — was dismissed by many as immoral and unlawful. Yet, it is the very tactic that Russia has pursued for decades…
In the conflict that began in Chechnya and has since metastasized into a loosely organized Islamic rebellion throughout the Caucasus region, Russian security services routinely arrest, torture and kill relatives, rights groups say.
The Russian approach, enough to make supporters of waterboarding wince, has by some accounts been grimly effective. Abductions of family members unwound the rebel leadership in Chechnya, for example.