In the summer of 2007, the geopolitics of Russo-North Caucasian relations were once again manifest in inter-ethnic violence. During the course of six weeks of rioting between ethnic Russian (russkii) and non-ethnic Russian (rossiiskii) citizens, three students were killed (one Chechen and two Russians) and pogroms were conducted widely. This article addresses these events through a focus on the nature and politics of the riots and those involved. I argue that a range of tensions came together to form a localised geopolitics, and that this contributes to an understanding of why these events took place. Ultimately, the riots are important as an event which reveals much about the complexity of power, space, and identity in contemporary Russia.