« In the 20th century the Chechens is the third nation, if we were to rank them, destined to be killed after the Jews and the Gypsies. » Zbigniew Brzezinski, Washington, D.C., December 11, 2003
In the frosty morning on February 23, 1944, all adults (there were few men, the war was still on) were summoned to the places of mass assembly: clubs, schools, town and village squares. That was the Red Army Day and, being still unaware, people were in a festive mood. But the blasphemy of Soviet authorities was so jesuitical that the state holiday was used as a pretext for the bloody crime. So, the monstrous action began with perfidy and meanness. Across the whole territory of Checheno-Ingushetia, against the background of machine-guns, the decree-sentence about the deportation of Chechens and Ingushs was announced. Then a 100,000 strong contingent of specially trained for such actions Russian soldiers began breaking into houses of the peaceful, unprotected and armless Chechen and Ingush population. Victims of these barbarian actions were given only 10-15 minutes to get ready! After that all those who were unable to quickly obey the order, i.e. weak elderly, children and women were forced outside, the ill were thrown down from hospital beds. Any manifestation of resentment was punished with death! An attempt to escape — execution! Misunderstood order — execution! All orders were given in Russian, although many Chechens did not understand it.
After the carnage of the deceived, they hunted for the rest of Chechnya residents. Russian soldiers, well-trained by the state, hunted about in order to humiliate and kill civilians. After the first days of the barbarian action most mountains and plains, towns and villages were covered with dead bodies. They were discovered everywhere: in deserted houses, in beds, in inner yards, along roads, paths, in the vicinities of villages, in precipices, in forests. Russians killed Chechens everywhere: they blew them up with mines, impaled, beheaded, burnt, drowned, poisoned. Most food products were poured with kerosene and burnt, instead poisoned food was scattered about, and mostly starving children fell victims — they did not understand why they could not eat clean and good looking food products. More than 7,000 Chechens were killed during the action in the Galanchozh district alone.
« The movable » according to Russian terms, part of the population was convoyed to railway stations and then loaded into cold train carriages for cattle. Overcrowded carriages were filled with men, women, children, elderly, regardless of their gender, age and cultural traditions of Chechens and Ingushs. And beginning from the evening of February 23 overcrowded trains — filled with people destined to inhuman sufferings — headed east: to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Western Siberia.
The snow-covered « Road of Death » which lasted up to 20 days, was dotted with thousands of corpses. Within the first frosty weeks of the deportation more than 70,000 people died from starvation, cold and diseases. The rest were out of the law. After the deportation most prisons and concentration camps in the USSR were filled with Chechens.
In total, some 200,000 Chechens and 30,000 Ingushs died in exile. Almost every second Chechen and Ingush died. Out of 29,000 Chechens-Akkins, who used to live in Dagestan, about 20,000 perished.
The people was exterminated not only physically. All memories about Chechens, who lived on their land for centuries, were destroyed. Ancient manuscripts, religious-philosophical treatises, ancient manuscripts of Chechens and Ingushs about their origin, literature from private libraries and archives was brought to Grozny from all corners of Chechnya. For several days all these valuable documents were burnt in the city center in an attempt to burn the historical memory of the Chechen people.
Ancient ethnographic monuments in the mountains, cemeteries, hundreds of thousands of grave steles were destroyed, mercilessly broken and taken for construction of roads, bridges and buildings. Even steles with antique Greek inscriptions on them were ruined. Special NKVD squadrons were sent into the mountains to destroy national monuments of Chechen architecture. One shall know the contents of Chechen architecture and its origins in order to evaluate its significance, place in the history of world culture! For example, back in Middle Ages in difficult mountainous conditions Chechens and Ingushs built 6-7 storied guard towers, 4-5 storied dwelling stone constructions with a developed, for that time, system of ventilation and heating, with complex aseismic knots. A surprising for that time level of combination of rationality, elegance and stability of national Chechen architecture was discussed at a number of international engineering forums. The author of the given essay, in 1990 — the chairman of the subcommittee for culture of the Chechen-Ingush Parliament, together with a group of experts, studied the results of the barbarian actions to destroy these historic monuments. On the territory of the prominent Argun gorge alone some 250 ancient and Middle Age stone towers and castles were destroyed! A little more than 50 monuments of Chechen history remained intact. There were three reasons which did not allow Russians to destroy them completely 60 years ago. First — a brave defense struggle by those Chechens who stayed in the mountains, second — a number of historic monuments were unknown to the enemy, i.e. they were not in historic atlases. And third — paradoxically, it was impossible to destroy some monuments using traditional methods — they proved too firm and solidly built.
There is another fact which characterizes Russia’s policy towards Chechens. Documents, books, materials relating about « the people’s enemies » — Chechens and Ingushs — were withdrawn from libraries and burnt. Entire archives were destroyed. Across the whole territory of Checheno-Ingushetia names of settlements, streets, squares and different bodies reminding of the Chechen-Ingush people were renamed. A civilized nation respecting its dignity will never become so mean. For example, over its history the USA has never practiced such renaming! All historical-geographic names of native Americans as well as Mexican toponyms in the southern part of the USA — are respected and remain invariable!
Crimes Never to be Forgotten
As a result of archive and field studies, questioning witnesses and participants of the resettlement action, outrageous war crimes of 1944 and the consequent period of the deportation became known. Facts show that mostly women, children, elderly and ill people, in other words — « the immovable» from the Russian point of view — were exterminated on the spot. »
Dziyaudin Malsagov, born in 1913, served in NKVD from 1944 to 1957. He testifies:
« Even at that time I found out that the order to cut off «the immovable» was signed by Kruglov (Sergei Nikiforovich Kruglov — Second Rank State Security Commissar of the USSR — L. U.). During the investigation of these events in 1956 (by N. Khruschev’s order — L. U.), when it was proved that Kruglov had given the order to kill «immovable» Chechens, Kruglov committed suicide. »
Below are documented and widely publicized data about Russia’s atrocities against the civilian Chechen population. Obviously, the discovered facts — is only a minor part of the large-scale Russian massacre which took place 60 years ago. However, even these facts — widely known in Chechnya and unknown in the West — provide an exhaustive picture why Chechens cannot forgive and will never forget, moreover, will never forgive these crimes. Anyway, that is unlikely to happen until Russia is properly condemned at the international level as a state responsible for these crimes!
1. Mountainous settlement of Yalkharoy:
Russian soldiers killed 86 Chechens convoyed to the assembly point for further deportation.
2. Mountainous settlement of Khakhilge of Ahkkha community:
In February 1944 in the settlement between Zingala and Biytsy Russian soldiers killed weak elderly, men, women and ill villagers separated by force from their family members, who carried them on themselves instead of food products. In total, 32 people were executed.
3. The Cheberloyevsky district. Kezenoi-Am Lake:
The «immovable» part of the population was drowned there. The exact number of victims is not known.
4. The Itum-Kalinsky district:
In this district Russian soldiers threw grenades and Molotov cocktails into the houses with ill people to free themselves from the transportation issues and just for « fun ». The exact number of victims is not known.
M.A. Amirov, a resident of the settlement of Alkhazurovo, testifies:
« In summer 1944 abrek Ib Alkhastov from Khildekharoy of the Itum-Kalinsky district together with his comrades Zhabrail, Kabi Mussa and other people crossed the mountains of Peshkhoy. Suddenly they came across traces of crimes by Soviet troops: on the bottom of a deep precipice they discovered 12 bodies of peaceful residents with signs of firearm and bayonet wounds. Including a woman with a girl of 3 years old. A bayonet entered the woman’s back and came out through the back of the girl. »
5. Mountainous district of Malkhista:
There Russian soldiers used to force Chechens into mountain caves for further extermination. The exact number of Russian atrocities is not defined.
6. The Nozhai-Yurt district:
In this district Russian soldiers preferred to put Chechens into corn cribs, pour them with gasoline and burn alive. The exact number of burnt victims is not known.
7. Mountainous settlement of Peshkha, not far from Nashkha:
During frosty February days of 1944 Russian soldiers killed 80 people — children, women and elderly — in the cave of Tsyen Avlakh Hyekh.
8. Mountainous settlement of Malkhisty:
More than 300 people of the « immovable » category were executed.
9. Urus-Martan. The regional hospital. February 23, 1944:
On that tragic day many patients from the nearby settlements were taken to this central hospital of Urus-Martan. In total, 72 patients who were thrown down the precipice some 10 meters away from the hospital and covered with rubbish alive.
10. Community of Tierloy, the settlement of Arstakh:
Russian soldiers exterminated a group of weak elderly. The exact number of victims is not known.
11. Achkhoi-Martan district, south of settlement of Valerik:
Vissita Anzorov, who went into hiding trying to find his 10-year old son, was brutally killed there. Russian soldiers beheaded Vissita and captured his son. Then they brought Vissita’s head to the mosque in Shalazhi and played football using the head instead of a ball. The desperate 10 year old son attacked Russian soldiers trying to take away the father’s head, but then Russians played football using the boy instead of a ball.
12. Galayn Chozh, not far from the settlement of Iamiye:
Here, not far from the Galayan-Chozh Lake, during the deportation, some 600 children, women and elderly were mercilessly executed and thrown into the lake.
13. The district of Galayn Chozh, the settlement of Nashkha:
From March to April cadets of the 61st training-infantry regiment killed more than 80 people — ill and invalids, on March 22 by the order of lieutenant Struyev and sergeant Sidorov in the settlement of Gelichi cadet Sisnitsa killed disabled D. Zhabiyev and bayoneted patient I. Gaisultanov and his son Umar Gaisultanov, 8. Five aged women stayed in the settlement of Amki, they could not move. Just for fun, members of the same regiment threw down the chimney grenades and ammunition thereby killing the miserable people.
14. The district of Galayn Chozh. The settlement of Khaibakh:
On February 27, 1944, Russian soldiers burnt alive some 700-750 people, mostly children, women and elderly. The executors were awarded with state medals. The actions was not only cruel but also mean, because at that time there were no adult men in the village able to show resistance to the barbarian massacre by Russian troops. The oldest of the victims was 110 years old, the youngest — newly born babies!
Below is the list of 66 victims of the massacre. Among them — 44 children and teenagers, 16 women and 6 men:
Gazoyeva Zano, mother — 55 years old
Gazoyev Mokhdan, son — 17 years old
Gazoyev Berdan, son — 15 years old
Gazoyev Mahmad, son — 13 years old
Gazoyev Berdash, son — 12 years old
Gazoyeva Zharadat, daughter — 14 years old
Gazoyeva Taikhan, daughter — 3 years old
Gelagayeva Duli, mother — 48 years old
Galagayev Sosmad, son — 19 years old
Gelagayev Abuezid, son — 15 years old
Gelagayev Gimakha, son — 13 years old
Gelagayev Movladi, son — 9 years old
Gelagayeva Zainad, daughter — 14 years old
Gelagayeva Sakhara, daughter — 10 years old
Ibragimova Pakant, mother — 50 years old
Ibragimova Khaipati, daughter — 23 years old
Ibragimov Adnan, son — 20 years old
Ibragimova Petimat, daughter — 20 years old
Chibirgova Minegaz, woman — 81 years old
Chibirgova Zalimat, daughter-in-law — 35 years old
Chibirgov Abdulmazhed, her son — 8 years old
Chibirgova Laila, her daughter — 7 years old
Chibirgova Marem, her daughter — 5 years old
Gazalbekov Salambek, 16 years old. Managed to escape. However, was killed by machine-gun fire while swimming across the river.
Gazalbekov Kavalbek — 14 years old
Dagayeva Zano, woman — 90 years old
Dagayev Zhamallail, boy — 11 years old
Amagov Kerim — 70 years old
Amagov Mussa, his son — 8 years old
Bakieyva Data, woman — 24 years old
Khabilayeva Matsyi, woman — 80 years old
Gairbekov Girikha (doctor) — 50 years old
Gairbekova Petimat, his wife — 45 years old
Gairbekov Adnan, their son — 10 years old
Gairbekova Medina, their daughter — 5 years old
Bersanukayeva Zuripat, mother — 55 years old
Bersanukayeva Khanpat, daughter — 19 years old
Bersanukayeva Bakuo, daughter — 17 years old
Bersanukayeva Baluza, daughter — 14 years old
Bersanukayev Mohmad-Khanip, son — 11 years old
Bersanukayeva Baissari, daughter — 9 years old
Bersanukayeva Bazuka, daughter — 7 years old
Batukayeva Khabi, grandmother — 60 years old
Batukayeva Pailakh, mother — 30 years old
Batukayev Abuezid, her son — 12 years old
Batukayeva Asma, her daughter — 7 years old
Batukayeva Gashta, her daughter — 5 years old
Batukayeva Satsita, her daughter — 3 years old
Batukayeva Toita, her newly born daughter
Altimirova Zaluba, girl — 16 years old
Altimirov Akhmad, boy — 14 years old
Altimirov Mohmad, boy — 12 years old
Altimirova Tovsari, girl — 16 years old
Altimirov Abdurakhman, boy — 14 years old
Altimirov Mutsyi, boy — 12 years old
Eltayev Khozh-Akhmad, boy — 15 years old
Eltayev Saidat-Akhmad, boy — 13 years old
Gayev Tuta — 110 years old
Gayeva Saryi, his wife — 100 years old
Gayev Khatu, his brother — 108 years old
Gayeva Marem, his wife — 90 years old
Gayev Alaudi — 45 years old
Gayev Khassabek — 50 years old
Gayeva Khessa, Alaudi’s wife — 30 years old
Gayev Khassan and Hussein — newly born twin brothers
Dziyaudin Malsagov, born in 1913, testifies:
« In Khaibakh, people from the nearby villages were collected in the stable named after L. Beria. A NKVD officer ordered all those who could not walk to enter the building saying that a lot of hay was prepared to make them warm. Elderly, women, children, ill villagers and those who took care about them gathered there. All that happened before my eyes. The rest of local residents were convoyed through the settlement of Yalkhoroy to the village of Galashki and then to a railway station. Between 10 and 11 a.m., when the healthy part of the population was sent away, the gate of the stable was closed. I heard the order: « Fire! »… The whole building was set on fire. It turned out that soldiers prepared the hay beforehand and poured it with gasoline. When the flame rose above the stable, those who stayed inside the building rushed to the gate, broke it open and tried to escape… However machine-gun fire stopped them. The exit was blocked with dead bodies. »
Magomed Gayev, born in 1931, living in Alma-Ata, testifies:
« Only elderly, ill and weak and also those who took care of them were sent to the stable. I saw how the stable was set on fire. A thick smoke rose to the sky. Even over a great distance we could understood that something terrible happened in the village: hundreds of voices merged and turned into a horrible, inhuman scream. The scream of the burnt victims. »
Salambek Zakriyev testifies:
« On that day me and Gamargayev Piyssar from the cave on the mount of Yardinkor looked toward Khaibakh. We smoke rising above the village. Near the bridge of Byati, not far from Khaibakh, four soldiers pursued a man. Later they killed him and threw down into the river of Gekhi. After the deportation, some 2-3 days later, we discovered a dead body: a pregnant woman killed by soldiers. We buried her. »
Alimkhodzhayev Selim, 106 years old, living in Gekhi-Chu, testifies:
« Ibi — Dovt’s son, 20, was shot dead during the prayer. My brother, Alimkhodzhayev Salambek, 35, was a teacher. He was killed while walking on a road. His wife is still alive, her name is Besiila. She lives in Roshni-Chu. All this time she has kept the plait of her sister Pailakha. Pailakha was killed and burnt together with her children in Khaibakh. Her body was identified by the plait which remain intact. Gazoyev Ibi was shot dead while convoyed along a road. A soldier hit him with the rifle butt and said: «Speed up!» Ibi stopped, turned around and spat into his face. The convoy forced him from the column and shot dead. That happened in the settlement of Khanoin-Yukhkhe. He was buried there. Some 3-4 days after the deportation of people from the aul of Mushe-Chu Russian soldiers discovered lying Zaripat in a deserted house. She was executed. Later, they dragged her outside using metal wire wound around her neck and burnt the body. The metal noose remained on the body. Zakriyev Salambek and Said-Khassan Ampukayev buried her together with the noose. She was a sister of our father. Salambek Zakriyev’s wife, Satsita, 21, was killed. Saikhan’s baby, tied to her back, got free and tried to suck dead mother’s breast. On that day Rukman Elkagayev’s wife, Malikat, 20, was also killed. While burying killed and burnt people in Khaibakh, we left a guard near the Galanchozh Lake to look for soldiers. We read a funeral prayer for each dead person, Zhandar Gayev offered the prayer. Without rest, although we felt sick and giddy because of putrid smell, we buried people for two days and two nights… »
When the major stage of the Chechen expulsion was over, the hunt for those, who were lucky to escape the doleful fate, began. The Russian military used everything it had in its arsenals to exterminate those who managed to escape. The practice of scattering « accidentally left » poisoned food products in the mountains was widely applied. Poisoned food products were also widely tested on Chechens in exile. Frankly speaking, its is unclear why they did it. Either to carry out experiments or to decrease the number of Chechens in certain exile place.
This aspect of Russia’s crimes was discussed at the conference « International Law and the Chechen Republic » (Poland, Krakow, December 8-11, 1995). One of its participants, Professor Ivan Bilas, a deputy of the Ukrainian Parliament, cited data from the Russian archive (fund 9478, case number 1375, 1949), showing that during the years of the deportation Chechens were « fed » by poisoned products. In documents they are called « food surprises ». According to archive data, numerous recipes for food supplies for Chechens were worked out. So, for example, to poison 1 kilogram of flour — it was recommended to add 1 gram of white arsenic, 10 grams — per 1 kilogram of salt. Another poison — arsenic-sodium salt — was ascribed for sugar (10 grams per 1 kilogram of sugar) and water (1 gram per 1 liter of water). This « surprise » was recommended on the ground, in particular, when Chechens cooked their favorite dumplings. Hexogen was « good » for oils. There was a number of other devilish recipes and safety rules for those who delivered such « food surprises » to Chechens. At the same Krakow conference, another participant Richard Bochan, a deputy of the Krakow City Council, referred to testimonies of Polish deportees who witnessed a strange mass (in thousands) dying of « seemingly healthy and strong Chechens ». Not only Poles noted facts of strange and sudden deaths of Chechens, but also representatives of other deported nations. That fact that « the Chechen » death laboratory was functioning in Moscow at least until 1949 makes us conclude that poisoning of Chechens with chemicals was in practice for a long time.
Dziyaudin Malsagov, born in 1913, testifies:
«Troops poisoned food products they left after them — spice-cakes, crackers, sugar, etc. Many Chechens died because of poisoning. »
Makhdan Tushayev, born in 1926, testifies:
« Troops mercilessly shot at mountain dwellers, they left poisoned crackers and other food products. Starving Chechens ate them and died. While meeting each other we exchanged news. Most people in the mountains knew already that found food products must not be eaten. »
Deportations of Nations — A traditional Instrument of National Russian policy
Djabrail Gakayev, a prominent expert in Chechnya’s political history, who cannot be accused of being biased, writes:
« During 450 years of the relations between Chechnya and Russia the Chechen people has been subjected to partial and — in 1944 — full deportation 16 times. » (Djabrail Gakayev, « Essays of Chechnya’s political history ». Moscow, ChKTs printing house, 1997, pages 37, 48-50).
Besides, judging by B. Yeltsin’s secret orders, which later became public, and also on the basis of real political actions, Gakayev believes that in 1994 Moscow adopted a new form — of « voluntarily-forced » deportation. As we know, it turned a failure for aggressors.
According to different reference estimations given by Professor Gakayev in his monograph, as a result of Russia’s policy only in the 19th century alone the total number of Chechens decreased at least 4 fold, some expert estimations refer to a 10 fold reduction.
Gakayev emphasizes that falsifying and juggling with facts a number of authors deliberately try to belittle Chechen losses as a result of Russian crimes. (See ibid. Page 46). By the beginning of the 19th century the Chechen population, according to objective experts, totaled 1.5 million people (See ibid., Page 47). And by the end of the 19 century, according to sources of the Imperial Russia, « few Chechens remained in Chechnya ».
The anatomy of Russia’s lie for falsifying and juggling with facts of historic reality has seen no changes — judging both by the outcomes of the genocide of 1944-1957 and the new turn of genocide started in 1994. Let’s give bright examples. In 1998, when national-fascist moods became widely popular in Russia, the Moscow-base publishing house Insan published a book by N.F. Bugai and A.M. Gonov under a seemingly pretentious title: « The Caucasus: Nations in special trains (20-60’s) ». Being not ashamed of their position, the authors of this pasquinade try to justify the barbarian deportation of 1944. These pseudo-chronologists — read these lines attentively! — write: « The USSR government, making right accents, was based on the right to put the country’s rear in order! » That’s it! Nothing else. Brave and outstanding heroes of the Chechen Resistance who struggled without fear against that beast-like tyrannical system which formed in the USSR in 30’s are called by the authors as « bandits » and « terrorists ». Besides, in their references they mostly appeal to falsified reports of the-then « Kadyrovs ». Such falsified data can easily mislead a historian who is unaware of real facts about the historic crimes. However, the main thing is that these Russian historians try to justify deportations as a necessary component of the policy of their state! We can only thank them for being frank! Strange enough, the so-called «study» is spread in many countries thereby misleading readers and public. Meanwhile, the authors’ position runs counter even to Russia’s law denouncing the deportation.
And now it is time to show how all possible «substantiations» for the deportation of declared nations-victims. Here is a quote from one of the documents giving a clear understanding of such « kitchen ». On November 10, 1941 prominent member of the leadership of the Chechen-Ingush NKVD Albogachiyev wrote to his agent, certain Terloyev, whose task, as we can see, was to organize and to provoke anti-Soviet disturbances from the side of Chechens:
« Dear Terloyev! My greetings to you! I am sad that your mountaineers began the rebellion too early. I am afraid that if you do not follow my recommendations, we, employees of the republic, will be disclosed… For the Allah sake, be faithful to your oath. Do not name us. » And then: « You shall write a hostile letter to me, threatening with possible consequences, and I will also begin persecuting you. I will burn your house, arrest someone of your relatives and will speak out against you. Thus we must show that we are irreconcilable enemies and we harass each other… You shall destroy this message before the eyes of my messenger. The time is dangerous, I am afraid. » (GARF. F.R. — 9478, Op1. D.55 L1-9).
We can easily compare — what Putin does today against Chechens is almost the same what Stalin’s people did 60 years ago. The same methods, although today’s actions seem even more outrageous, mean and barbarian. Unlike Putin did in 1999, Stalin could hardly blow up apartment blocks in Moscow with ethnic Russian. And about Terloyev. Experts are well aware of this name, because as a symbol of « Chechen brigandage » it was as popular in the press of 40’s as the name of Barayev which became a justifying, so to say, brand of « Chechen terrorism » shortly before the current war.
But let’s go back to the essay of Bugai and Gonov. Guess, to how many victims among Chechens do these authors refer? It is impossible to believe because in line with their « reference » data the number of the victims of these actions TOTALED (!!!) 50 people. (See ibid. Page 148). These doctors of science even deny the official, recognized at the state level, scale of Russian atrocities in Chechnya. For example, there is a document of August 24, 1993, from the prosecutor’s office of the North Caucasian Military District which clearly recognizes the fact of burning 700 civilians in the village of Khaibakh. But why speaking about the district! The fact of that action of genocide is noted in the widely known document signed by L. Beria when he congratulates and decorates the leaders and the executors of the monstrous action with state awards for their « decisiveness! » Falsification traditions have remained until today. It is known that even by the most pro-Russian estimations a great number of people died in Chechnya — tens, several hundreds of thousands of civilian population, the environment of the Chechen people as destroyed, not to speak about thousands of refugees who fled the zone of the humanitarian catastrophe. And against the background of such obvious tragic reality, Putin organizes «a national census» in Chechnya and on the basis of its «results» it is announced that the number of Chechens has not dropped, on the contrary, it has plummeted!!! And then, taking into account the non-existent additional population, the so-called referendum about « overall Chechen love to Russia » is carried out as well as « the election » of the so called «first Chechen president! » Such blatant impudence and political tricks against the background of the endless war, cleaning up operations, disappearances! Impossible to believe!
The only reason why the genocide of Chechens has never been denounced is the fact that Russians — according to V. Novodvorskaya — « have not appear to be the lost side ». The Russian evil, the evil of their predatory state traditions, never denounced, hampers the progress of peace and prosperity, still exerts its destructive influence upon the neighboring nations and their own development.
When analyzing Russia’s senseless and boundless cruelty, one and the same questions arises. What is the reason for such barbarism? Reading through chronicles written by Russians in the 19th century, materials about the 1944 deportation, today’s bloody chronicles from Chechnya, we always see elements of boundless cruelty and all possible attempts to humiliate the victim. It is unclear why people must be tortured, drowned, burnt, cut into pieces, buried alive? They might have applied more «human» methods for the dirty business, shooting them, for example. Why do they behave like that? What do Russians need? May be they need land? What is the point of their cruelty and such impudent, blatant and endless lie!? Why making everything possible for people to hate you? That’s senseless. That’s stupid from the practical point of view. Is the answer to this question in the mystery of the Russian soul? Aren’t there hopes for a progress of the Russian national humanism? Why is humanism in Russia only a concern of dissidents?
Mahdan Tushayev, born in 1926. An interview of 1992, in which he testifies:
« I must say that Russians instilled cruelty in me. While in prison, I behaved in the manner to be executed as soon as possible. I expected death there. I had nothing to lose. I didn’t believe I would survive, because I saw how Chechens were exterminated in prisons, in camps, at large, just for one reason — being Chechens. »
Gayeva Zama, born in 1940, living in Grozny, testifies:
« When we were resettled from Zerkh, out father, Yassu Gayev, shepherded a flock in the forest, our mother left for the mill. And we, four girls, stayed at home on our own. The oldest — Arubika, was 10, me, Zama — 4-5, Sovdat — 3, and Satsita — 1. Someone wrapped us into blankets and put into a yoked sledge. I remember that I was alone in the sledge. When it went down from the mount of Khordoyn-lam and approached the cemetery of the settlement of Beza-Yurt, I woke up. There was no one around. It was cold. It was night, a clear, bright sky. I couldn’t see the oxen. No people around me. First I tried to rise but then, frightened, wrapped myself into the blanket and hid. At dawn I raise myself again. Then I heard Russian speech, voices and clatter of horses’ hoofs. When they approached I heard: « This is a child! » — a Russian said. And they wrangled for some time. However, one of them took me up, put me on his back and covered with the greatcoat. The quarrel happened because some Russians wanted to kill me and my defender did not allow them to do it. And all of them swore at him. I was sitting under his greatcoat on his back, I was afraid and began sobbing. The soldier mounted his horse. He tried to console me and offered a cracker. But I continued sobbing. Then he put me down, offered his quilted jacket and put me on the saddle in front of him. so we reached Arsh-aliye. There were many people standing in the mud. Many corn stems in the mud and women and children were standing on them. « Whose child is this? » — the soldier asked. My mother’s brother approached. The Russian did not let me go and asked about my mother. « Her mother is at the mill, » my uncle replied. The soldier kept me on his arms all through the night. The next morning, at dawn, I recognized the dress of my mother. I shouted wildly: « Nana! » My mother, sobbing, rushed to me. I stretched my hands towards her. The Russian soldier looked and me and began crying bitterly… »
Note: To prepare this article the following materials were used — studies by ethnographer A. Suleimanov, historians D. Khozhayev, Dj. Gakayev, M. Vachagayev, A. Nekrich, journalists T. Chagayeva, M. Khadissov, S. Gayev and personal studies of the author.
Defense Language Institute of the US Defense Department