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Category: History

Modern Russia and Cossacks: revival ideology

UDK 32.3 (470+571)


© 2009 urban districts of N. Borisov

North Caucasian scientific center of the higher school North Caucasian Scientific Centre

Southern Federal University, of High School,

Pushkinskaya St., 140, Rostov-on-Don, 344006, Pushkinskaya St., 140, Rostov-on-Don, 344006,

nses@sfedu. ru nses@sfedu. ru

The set of problems of ethnocultural and political development of the Cossacks, the strategy of its interaction with the state is considered what will require not only political will of the Cossacks, but also adoption of the relevant acts from the federal center.

Serious knowledge of the whole complex of the problems of ethnographic, cultural and political evolution of the Cossacks, as well as acceptance of the new legal basis and the interaction strategy of the Cossacks and State is required to this effect. To implement this we shall need not only respective political will on the part of the Cossacks, as well as, we shall need the adoption of the respective legal enactments on the part of the Federal Center.

Revival of the Cossacks has the sources and the ideological background which is connected with activity of the public and patriotic organizations which arose to Dona in the years of rise of the public and patriotic movement and manifestation of interest in a true story of Don region and the Cossacks in particular. As a result, in 80 - the 90th a number of the public and patriotic organizations, such as Don military and historical club of M.I. Platov, literary association Sholokhovsky Circle, "Cossack Circle of Don", cultural and historical association "Vsedonskoy Circle" and others, played a big role in revival of the Don Cossacks [1] is created. Answering a question of the correspondent of the Molot newspaper - "What you wait from the forthcoming congress of the Cossack and public and patriotic organizations of Don?", I. Karasyov, one of leaders of the Cossack movement, answered: "We want that to Dona there was the national guard, but not as American. Would like to see the Area of army of Donskoy restored in the borders that former names of villages, streets that monuments of our culture were restored were returned, stories names of our commanders Platov, Baklanov are returned..." [2, page 17].

Ideological content of activity Don D of club (DVIK) of M.I. Platov who grew up from a small circle of fans of military history, uniformist can be divided into five main directions conditionally: creation at a special Don Cossack division of the Don military school from the list of school students and preinduction youth; establishment of theater "Donskoy Cossack tradition"; attempts to establish close ties with the Soviet Army and the North Caucasus Military District on military-patriotic education; work with youth and especially with preinduction, in preparation for military service.

Activity of club was based exclusively on a voluntary basis, on ideological and patriotic upsurge of his members, and is absolutely disinterested. DVIKU it was fated to play a big role in formation of the Union of Cossacks of Area of army of Donskoy (SK Department of Internal Affairs) [2, page 16].

As cultural and educational association DVIK is the ideological and cultural basis of revival of the Cossacks. The idea was embodied in symbols, DVIK lifted and consecrated a three-colored Army banner and also Vsedonskoy a circle" supported association of public and patriotic forces of area in "and took the lead of preparation and holding a congress of Cossacks of Don. On the basis of club the first headquarters of "Army the Don" is created and the structure of army up to a farm circle is developed. The Cossack circles are transferred to military manners of their formation, with obligatory existence of a form and chinoproizvodstvo. On the basis of branches DVIKA there were first Cossack classes and cadet cases in Novocherkassk, Rostov-on-Don, Volgodonsk, Aksay, Kamensk-Shakhtinsky, Shakhty, etc. Many clubmen became marching atamans, chiefs of headquarters, members of boards of the Cossack organizations.

On the other hand, the ideology of revival of the Cossacks is connected with activity of literary association Sholokhovsky Circle. Having united about forty professional writers and young writers, journalists in the ranks, involving in the activity publishing workers, patriotically adjusted writing intellectuals, the Circle declared itself the adherent of the Moscow "Association of the Russian artists", "The union of spiritual revival of the Fatherland", being guided by the magazines "Nash Sovremennik", "Molodaya gvardiya", the Literary Russia weekly.

In activity of this association the ideology of revival of the Cossacks sounded in the context of opened

condemnations of Trotskyist genocide against the Cossacks, and declaration of a course towards revival of Don and Russia. "the Sholokhovsky circle" has the publication - "The Don word", the literary and art annex to the Rostov regional newspaper "Molot", then the similar annex "Cossack Circle" to the regional newspaper "Komsomolets". Also the pre-revolutionary local history edition - the Priazovsky Kray newspaper revives, and in "the Reclamation expert of Don" "the newspaper in the newspaper" - "Messages of the Don Cossacks" began to appear. The Rostov office of the All-Russian society of protection of historical and cultural monuments (VOOPIIK), youth section of "the Sholokhovsky circle" restored the pre-revolutionary magazine Orpheus. The lack of literature on stories of the Don Cossacks is filled with establishment at the Rostov office VOOPIIK of two publishing houses: "Don word" (Yu. Filippov) and "Monuments history of the Fatherland" (Yu. Maslov). "The Sholokhovsky circle", having united the intellectuals, made much and regarding merging of the public and patriotic movement to Dona in "Vsedonskaya a circle".

The main outcome of activity of these historical and cultural and literary associations was the fact that the idea of revival of the Cossacks which arose in the environment of the intellectuals became property of the general public.

In parallel with "the Sholokhovsky circle" in Rostov-on-Don at first there was Historical and cultural society "Starodonye", having united around the Komsomolets newspaper, and subsequently on its base there was "The Cossack circle of Don". News served as the reason for that that in Moscow the association of Cossacks is formed. In April, 1990 at the initiative of group of enthusiasts "The Cossack circle of Don" adopted the Charter and created the organization. Unlike the "Sholokhovsky circle" paying the main attention social and political and cultural historically to aspects of the movement, the theory of the Cossack question, "The Cossack circle of Don" after participation in the Moscow Big circle undertook functions of support in the organization of the Cossack circles on places: Semikarakorsk, Bagayevsky, Aksay, Old Cherkassk, Novoshakhtinsk. Its Charter determined the main areas of work by recovery of historical justice concerning the Cossacks, culture and traditions of ancestors, to environmental protection, military historically education of youth, preservation of monuments and buildings of the Cossack architecture.

Penetration of the idea of revival of the Cossacks to Dona in wide public life was promoted by creation in March, 1990 of the cultural and historical association "Vsedonskoy Circle" which collective founders were a literary association Sholokhovsky Circle, the Rostov office of the All-Russian society of protection of historical and cultural monuments, DVIK, Oko literary advertizing agency; agency of Fatherland Monuments. Headed the associations I.G. Voytov. "The Cossack circle of Don" refused entry into number of founders of association, having expressed no confidence in a number of societies.

Within the association "Vsedonskoy Circle" the idea of revival of the Cossacks gets distinct forms.

The most important directions in its work - service to the Fatherland, fostering patriotism, the state, spiritual and cultural and historical revival of Russia, preservation and restoration of historical and cultural monuments, promotion of the best pages of history of the Don Cossacks and elimination of "white spots" - exposure of policy of a raskrestyanivaniye and a decossackization.

Further development and assessment of ideology of revival of the Cossacks are connected with activity of two organizations - "The Vsedonsky circle" and "The Cossack circle of Don" which became initiative frame of further formation of the idea of revival of the Don Cossacks and created the organizing committee on preparation of a congress of Cossacks of Don [3]. But at the beginning they were not only colleagues, but also rivals, having already emphasized with some names vsedonsky the nature of the activity.

Penetration of the idea of revival into rather wide groups of the Cossack population led to revaluation of the idea and a certain shift of poles [4]. The division from the very beginning caused by mistrust of the Cossack circle to the intellectuals which in the most part consisted in the CPSU was very much not by the way because in "the Vsedonsky circle" the intellectuals concentrated mainly, and in "The Cossack circle of Don" - "the Cossack commoners". This artificial watershed became a chronic disease of "the politized city Cossacks". Its main reason is that if the intellectuals ("the Sholokhovsky circle") supported first of all conciliarity of interests, sharply denying division of Cossacks into "white" and "red", then radical city associations (Rostov-on-Don, Novocherkassk) were under a great influence of democratically spirited deputies of city councils. The rejected thesis of "need of historical reconciliation" led to split of city Cossack circles and creation of the parallel organizations [5].

Establishment of two associations - "The Vsedonsky circle" and "The Cossack circle of Don" - defines not only split in the public and patriotic movement of Don, but also highlights latent fight of "democratic parties" for an opportunity to influence again arising grass-roots movement of the public. So-called radical Cossacks in "The Cossack circle of Don" made no more than ten percent. This ratio was confirmed by a constituent Big circle of Don: from four hundred seventeen delegates with the right of a casting vote a hard line, in connection with adoption of the resolution on the termination of the civil war on Don, i.e. divisions on "white" and "red", occupied the person forty. They were not convinced by a position of the majority of a circle in relation to membership in the CPSU, and the attempt to dictate the conditions possible failure of a circle ended with a failure. Nevertheless they managed to head a number of the Cossack circles in Rostov-on-Don (for example, V. Popov) and also in Novocherkassk (V. Lagutov). They started fight for cleaning of the Cossack ranks of members of the CPSU that led to split of the Cherkassk district and growth of mistrust to the ataman V. Lagutov. Similar split happened also in the Rostov district where a part of Cossacks created in November, 1990 the Cossack circle of Don -

The "Business center of Rostov-on-Don" which united on business, professional and intellectual qualities of the Cossacks capable to the practical embodiment in life of social, economic and spiritual and cultural interests of the Cossacks.

Undoubtedly, the big role in formation and the organization of the Cossack circles to Dona was played by the constituent Big circle of the Union of Cossacks passing in Moscow from June 28 to July 1, 1990 in Palace of culture of the Hammer and sickle plant. At a circle there were 263 delegates of the Cossacks of Russia and 437 guests [6].

At this forum the ideology of revival of the Cossacks was formulated in the form of a number of points comparable to the purposes and tasks of the Union of Cossacks: association of representatives of historical and traditional Cossack territories on the basis of preservation and recovery of the Cossacks as ethnic formation; establishment of a specific mode of land use on a traditional basis; spiritual and cultural revival of the best traditions of the Cossacks. The question of belonging to the Cossacks which caused numerous discussions was rather critical moment.

The constituent Big circle of the Union of Cossacks, despite the developed discussions in mass media on the subjects "Who Is Cossack" and "Whether to Accept in Cossacks?", decided that descendants of the Cossack childbirth, natives of traditional Cossack areas and natives of them and also the faces tied by a sort of interests and practical activities with the Cossacks, persons interested to revive identity of the Cossack ethnos, its history and culture which are actively promoting it, recognizing requirements of the Charter of the Union and paying membership fees can be members of the Union. Also participation in the movement of collective members admitted.

However ideological disagreements did not allow the Union of Cossacks of Area of army of Donskoy to enter into the Union of Cossacks (Moscow) and at the I All-Russian congress in Stavropol to address with the offer to reorganize the Union of Cossacks into the Union of the Cossack troops of Russia. In 1993. The Don Cossacks in Moscow, having expressed no confidence in the Union of Cossacks, founded the Union of the Cossack troops of Russia and abroad (SKVRIZ) led by the Supreme ataman V. Ratiyev.

the circle Cossacks of Don carried out

on November 17-18, 1990 in Rostov-on-Don. According to the Charter, the Union of Cossacks of Department of Internal Affairs appeared the public and patriotic movement and the historical successor Voysk of Donskoy, with traditional symbolics and the historical capital in Novocherkassk. The territory of Department of Internal Affairs was proclaimed the place of historical accommodation of the Don Cossacks.

Development of the idea of revival of the Cossacks and penetration into various population groups led it to transformation of the ideology. For and tasks of the Union on the first place not cultural, but political requirements already moved forward: fight for mitigation of consequences of repartition of the territory which was Department of Internal Affairs, restoration it in former borders, return of the historical name to it - the Don region - with restoration of district division, etc. The adopted Charter of the Union of Cossacks of Department of Internal Affairs much more differed from the charters which are already adopted at that time by the Cossack circles. It was the next step Russian

the Cossacks on creation not so much public and patriotic, how many the social and political movement for achievement of the goals of revival of the Cossacks.

Thus, the main milestones of formation of ideology of revival of the Cossacks in Russia and to Dona can be considered: creation of the public and patriotic organizations which set the objects of cultural and historical revival; election on June 29, 1990 at a congress of Cossacks in Moscow the ataman of the Union of Cossacks of Russia A. Martynova and the Big circle of the Union of Cossacks of Area of army of Donskoy which took place on November 17, 1990 in the building of regional philharmonic hall in Rostov-on-Don. On it the first ataman of army of Donskoy M.M. Sholokhov, the son of the famous Don writer M.A. Sholokhov was elected.

1990 it is characteristic of this stage of revival of the Don Cossacks attempts to legalize Rostov-on-Don as the Cossack city and the Cossack capital of Don. But historically and practically Rostov-on-Don was never the Cossack city, though was attributed to Area of army of Donskoy in 1887. Statistics says that in Rostov-on-Don before revolution there were no inhabitants of the Cossack origin. Therefore sympathies of Cossacks of Don favored the historical capital more - Novocherkassk [7].

On October 5, 1991 in premises of school of communication in Novocherkassk there began the work the Second Big circle of the Union of Cossacks of Don. Took part in work of the Circle and acted: representative of the President of Russia V.N. Zubkov, chief of the regional Department of Internal Affairs major general M.G. Fetisov, top military commander of the North Caucasus Military District colonel general L.S. Shustko, ataman of the Union of Cossacks of Russia A.G. Martynov, etc. Next day, i.e. on October 6, the Don ataman M.M. Sholokhov voluntarily resigned, and the ataman of the 1st Don district S.A. Meshcheryakov is elected the second ataman Voysk of Donskoy. The status of the historical and modern capital of the Don Cossacks was restored and set to Novocherkassk.

In 1991 the structure of the Cossack revival to Dona was clearly designated: Army board led by the Army ataman S.A. Meshcheryakov, nine Cossack districts with the villages and farms. Cossacks of the cities of Novocherkassk, Rostov and Taganrog received the separate status. In Novocherkassk were registered at this time and seven Cossack villages - Top, Average, Lower, Cossack, Novobaklanovsky, Don and Persianovsky worked.

On July 17-18, 1993 in Moscow the unifying Supreme circle - the Congress of the Cossack troops of Russia and the abroad on which the marching ataman of army of Donskoy V.N. Ratiyev is elected the Supreme ataman took place. The Circle determined by the capital of the Cossacks of Russia and the abroad the city of Novocherkassk.

Gradually accruing contradictions in the movement for revival of the Cossacks developed into opposition of Cossacks under the leadership of A.V. Martynov (Moscow), on the one hand, and under the leadership of V.N. Ratiyev (Novocherkassk) - with another. The situation and in the most Don Cossacks became complicated. So-called city Cossacks, i.e. Cossacks of various villages of Novocherkassk (Top, Average, Lower and

other), more often did not agree with decisions of the Cossack generals V.N. Ratiyev and N.I. Kazitsin. The Raznopo-lyusnost of estimates of contents of the contract approved by V.N. Ratiyev and signed by N.I. Kazitsin in Grozny with the president of Ichkeria Dzhokhar Dudaev about friendship and cooperation of the Union of Cossacks of Area of army of Donskoy with the Republic of Chechnya parted positions of the parties.

In November, 1994 in Novocherkassk there passed the Big circle with participation of representatives of the Cossack villages of the city and a number of villages of other Cossack districts which did not support the decision of the management of SK Department of Internal Affairs and SKVRIZ. On the Circle proclaimed creation of new Cossack structure - Vseveliky army of Donskoy. The ataman of the Cossack village of Average P.A. Baryshnikov was elected his ataman, and the koshevy ataman - the ataman of the Cossack village Top - G.P. Nedvigin. On December 3-4, 1994 in Novocherkassk there passed one more Big circle on which N.I. Kazitsin was confirmed to the post of the Don ataman of the Union of the Cossack troops of Area of army of Donskoy. Both Big circles which are carried out in Novocherkassk did not find language of mutual understanding and reconciliation, the general way of revival and development of the Don Cossacks.

The end of the 1994th and the beginning of 1995 are characteristic of Don Cossacks obvious disengagement of positions and attempts of the parties to find a support and understanding rather at the government federal and local power structures, than among themselves [8]. The whole 1995 passed in the current work on strengthening of the Cossack ranks and in opposition of adherents of the ataman N.I. Kazitsin and Cossacks of Novocherkassk led by the elected ataman of the Novocherkassk district G.P. Nedvigin [9]. Attempts to find mutual understanding terminated without results. Moreover, in October, 1996 there was an internal split between atamans N.I. Kazitsin and V.N. Ratiyev and their supporters.

In 1996 on the Big circle in Novocherkassk the former mayor of Volgodonsk V.F. Hizhnyakov is elected the ataman Voysk of Donskoy. June 17, 1997. The decree of the President of the Russian Federation registered the Charter of Army Cossack society Vseveliky Army Don. On July 12, 1997 in Novocherkassk on Yermak Square there took place the review parade devoted to delivery to Army to Donskoy of the certificate on its entering into the State register of the Cossack societies of the Russian Federation [10]. The order of the governor of the Rostov region V.F. Chuba the ataman V.F. Hizhnyakov became his deputy. Cossacks of the city as a part of the Novocherkassk district were a part of the register (state) Cossacks.

On the social and political arena of Don and Novocherkassk appeared two officially registered, but opposite on orientation of a wing of Vseveliky army of Donskoy. One carried on the public traditions and was headed by N.I. Kazitsin, and another passed to public service led by V.F. Hizhnyakov [11]. It is natural that the ataman N.I. Kazitsin did not acknowledge "legality" of the state Cossacks and tried to protest in letters to the President of Russia B.N. Yeltsin, the archbishop Rostov and Novocherkassk Pantaleon, etc. on September 1, 1997 the part of the former Atamansky palace occupied

since 1994, despite his counteraction, turned with management of the ataman N.I. Kazitsin into maintaining the ataman V.F. Hizhnyakov. October 14, 1997. The President of Russia B.N. Yeltsin approved the candidacy of the ataman of Vseveliky army Don V.F. Hizhnyakov [12].

Reality, unfortunately, such is that to Dona two Cossack armies continue to coexist. So far they do not find a common language and mutual understanding. In the analysis of the purposes and problems of the Cossack associations in process of deepening of process of revival of the Cossacks and its state formation it is found out that the public and patriotic and cultural and historical idea of revival of the Cossacks proclaimed the intellectuals and declared by leaders of the Cossack movement at its sources underwent significant changes in process of the development [13].

If to look at this problem from within, then now both leaders, and ideologists of the Cossack revival note lack of unity in ideological sense of purpose and problems of the movement [14]. In one case the questions connected with reconstruction of the Cossacks as estates are put in the forefront, in another - the aspiration to become completely self-providing economic population group, in the third is traced - education of a certain special sociocultural group (parts of the Russian people - "Cossacks the people"), is declared in the fourth - vision of a special "boundary barrier" at boundaries of the Russian state prevails.


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On May 5, 2009

Marie Kristin
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