/ / / .. / Russia and Tatarstan at a Crossroads of History.
Russia and Tatarstan at a Crossroads of History.

  • Raphael Khakimov
Anthropology & Archeology of Eurasia, vol.37, no.1 (Summer 1998), pp.30-71.

Russia and Tatarstan
At a Crossroads of History.


In the political sense, Russia [Rossiia] and Tatarstan cannot be compared. Rossiia has played a key role in European and world politics for hundreds of years.a Its leaders never leave the television screens and the newspapers comment daily on its foreign and even its domestic policy, while dozens of international centers study Rossiia from all sides, trying to predict its behavior.

Tatarstan is completely different. It has gotten lost in the depths of the ages. European consciousness associates it with vague impressions of Genghis Khan, the vast and wild expanses of "Tartary," and the TatarMongol invasions. Only specialist-historians, ethnographers, and visiting journalists have written about the republic, and then primarily in periods of the intensification of political relations between Kazan' and Moscow.

Rossiia occupies a huge territory, while Tatarstan is quite a small republic with a small population. Russian culture is known throughout the world, while Tatar culture is not known even in Rossiia. Indeed, Rossiia and Tatarstan find themselves in different "weight categories," and it is difficult to compare them.

After the signing of the bilateral Treaty of Tatarstan with Rossiia, many Western political scientists started looking for Kazan' on the map with interest.b As they imagined it, it was supposed to be someplace in Kazakhstan, or perhaps next to Mongolia? . .. And it was only after military actions had begun in Chechnya that the image of that "strange" republic that is taking a peaceful path, against normal logic, began to take shape.

Certain specialists on interethnic relations predicted an unavoidable political confrontation in Tatarstan with a violent outcome. Judge for yourselves, they said. Kazan' is the "northernmost outpost" of Islam and is surrounded by an Orthodox populationjust as in Bosnia. The practice of the post-Soviet space, as personified by Transdniestria, Abkhazia, and other territories, suggests that events will develop in the direction of a scenario of conflict in Tatarstan as well. After all, in Tatarstan, they opined, we see a classical example of a "clash of civilizations"and of civilizations that are extremely different from one another: Turkic, Slavic and Finno-Ugric, Muslim and Christian. On top of that, the ethnic groups in the republic carry the burden of a tragic past, complicating an already complex interethnic situation.

Their logic is understandable. World practice demonstrates in multi-ethnic countries the phenomenon of a divided society. Why should Tatarstan become the exception?! But nevertheless, social tension is clearly weakening in the republic from year to year. The enviable political stability dismays some but forces others to take a more careful look at internal processes.

In October 1994, after the appearance of President Mintimer Shaimiev at a forum at Harvard University, the term "the Tatarstan model" was born. It made its way from the academic environment into newspapers and political circles, and subsequently began to figure as an object of research at international conferences. The "Tatarstan model" began to be applied toward other situations of conflict.

Without a doubt, Tatarstan has had its successes with its original approaches concerning domestic policy and mutual relations with the center. Of course, in such an unpredictable country as Rossiia, events can take a turn in the most unexpected direction. Nonetheless, the policy of Tatarstan has already entered history as an attempt to find peaceful ways of development in such a supermilitarized country, with such strong proimperial traditions, as Rossiia.

Contained within the phenomenon of Tatarstan is the longstanding historical dispute of Moscow and Kazan', which in recent years has matured into a dialogue. Many find laughable the very thought of the possibility of a serious dispute between such a colossus as Rossiia with such a small territory as Tatarstan, where a population of less than four million lives, ethnically mixed and in a Russian enclave. What kind of dispute can there be here?! Just make it a guberniia [Moscow-administered governorship] and that's the end of that!c But thoughtful politicians look upon Tatarstan differentlythey remember the biblical story of David and Goliath and are in no hurry to jump to hasty conclusions.

After many centuries, Rossiia and Tatarstan have once again found themselves at an historical crossroads. They are offering different models of development. The opportunities are not equal, but this is the challenge of the times...

My Tatar grandmother
Rarely gave me presents:
And why had I been christened,
She raged bitterly.

Anna Akhmatova
"The Tale of the Black Ring"

Chapter 1. Is There Such a Thing as "Rossiiskaia Civilization"?

Causes of the crisis

Rossiia has entered into a period of ideological crisis, which is brought about by the process of the democratization of society and the breaking of all previous notions. Alongside Moscow, new provincial centers of public life have arisen, striving for self-determination [samo-stoiatel'nost']. The peoples [narody] are waiting for a change in the nation-state system of the country and a rejection of the old methods of administration. On this is superimposed the painful fact of the breakup of the USSR, which has brought about tension in political life and which demands a thoroughly new treatment of the fundamental principles of Russian ]rossiiskoe] statehood.

Until now, ideology (including Russian Marxism) was oriented to an expansion of the territory of the country; it was the excuse and the justification for the expansionism of the Russians. But it neither assumes nor allows for a reduction of territory, a decentralization of power and the rule of law; for this reason, it is completely useless for today. In the new conditions, given the Russian leadership's rejection of coercion as the main instrument in conducting domestic and foreign policy, other values are required, ones capable of uniting the peoples and territories voluntarily.

At first glance, the declaration of the sovereignty of Rossiia, the subsequent breakup of the USSR, and, as a consequence, the reduction of state territory are not a great matter in principle; after all, Rossiia still remains a huge country. In actuality, however, this chain of events creates the most complicated of ideological collisions.

By "Rossiia" was always meant not the RSFSR, but specifically the USSR. For this reason, with the breakup of the USSR, the former Rossiia broke up and, consequently, a new statehood declared itself. It is not by chance that the "Address on National Security by the President of the Russian Federation to the Federal Assembly" speaks of the "self-determination of the new Rossiia."1 But any self-determination is a painful process, associated with developing the conceptual foundations of the state. It is natural that a strong opposition to this process exists, demanding a return to the Soviet or old Russian empire.

The reduction of territory changed not only the quantitative parameters but also the qualitative ones. It made the country more northerly, putting power generation and other sectors into a harsher climatic framework. Rossiia was cut off from a number of Baltic and Black Sea ports, which throws it back by centuries in the geopolitical sense. In addition, as opposed to the postrevolutionary period, when a reduction of territory took place due to the separation of Finland and Poland, this time Kievconsidered according to the official ideology to be the birthplace of Russian statehoodturned out to be on the other side of the border.d This is not just a quantitative factor, but also a qualitative one. In actuality, if Kiev, the "mother of Russian cities," has become the capital of an independent state, then to what extent ought the roots of modem Rossiia be sought in Kievan Rus'? Does this not speak of the erroneousness of the traditional treatment of Russian history? It is hard to imagine a situation when, let us say, Kazan' would reject its Tatar origin and would declare itself to be the capital of another nation-state! But if Kievan Rus' is nevertheless the beginning of present-day Rossiia, then how are we to explain the phenomenon of a Russian [rossiiskoe] state without Ukraine? Where are its philosophical roots, defining the state's natural borders? And is not the state reduced anew once its historical territories easily form new states, declaring themselves to be an independent nation? There arc no answers to these questions yet.

History does not like superficial treatments. It often serves as an excuse for many claims. The "Address on National Security" begins: "From the historical point of view, Rossiia is the successor of Ancient Rus', the Muscovite Tsardom, the Russian Empire, the successor of the USSR."2 From this, one can make some far-reaching inferences concerning the vital interests of the state and build not only domestic policy but foreign policy as well. Today, it is not easy to talk about the origins and history of Rossiia without Kievmuch would have to be rewritten anew. It is not by chance that it seems to many easier to find ways to unite with Ukraine and Belorussia [Belarus] than to attempt to work out approaches to the ideology and the strategy of the country in the new borders.

Democratization and the rejection of imperial ambitions raise a new series of difficult questions. Not only Russians live in Rossiia, but also dozens of other peoples, some having a more ancient [known] history than the Russians. Traditionally, the history of Rossiia was presented as the Russian people's history. And even such a complex period as that of the Golden Horde, when Russian lives were determined from Sarai, was successfully avoided by the historians. S. M. Solov'ev, in the foreword to his multivolume Istoriia Rossii s drevneishikh vremen [A History of Rossiia from the Most Ancient Times], writes: "An historian does not have the right to cut the natural thread of events in the mid-thirteenth centuryspecifically, the gradual transition of clan-based principality relations into state onesand to insert the Tatar period, place the Tatars and Tatar relations in the forefront, in consequence of which the main phenomena, the main causes of these phenomena, are perforce hidden."3 If, before the Revolution, such an approach was general, then in the Soviet period authorities were more decisivethe 1944 Decree of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (bolsheviks) "On the State of and Measures for Improving Mass-Political and Ideological Work in the Tatar Party Organization" prohibited the study of the Golden Horde, having excluded the Tatar period from the history of Russian statehood and ensured thereby, as it were, the "uninterruptibility of the history of Rossiia." Today, it is difficult to support this tradition of many generations of Russian historians. Every people writes its own history independently. Scientific centers have become more independent in the ideological sense; it is difficult to control them and more complicated to exert pressure on them.

In connection with the telling of history, a natural question arises: if the indigenous peoples of Rossiia often appear more ancient than the Russians, then from whom exactly should one begin a description of the history of Rossiia? For example, the first Turkic khanate arose in the middle of the sixth century on Altas. Should we begin a description of history with Siberia, the Turkic Khazar khanate [kaganata], the Bulgar khanate [khanstva], and the life of other ancient peoples? Consequently, should we recognize them as state-creating ethnoses, and Rossiia itself as a multiethnic state? Or, on the other hand, having omitted a biography of the non-Russian peoples, should we begin more traditionallywith the politics of Muscovy, its conquests, and so forththat is, treat the history of Rossiia as purely Russian?! This question is not so much academic as it is political. It touches upon the very essence of society and is associated with the self-determination of a people. In actuality, who does bear responsibility for the destiny of Rossiia? The Russians [russkie]? The peoples of Rossiia [Russiane]? A multinational people [mnogonatsional'nyi narod]? A territorial conglomerate? The Constitution of Rossiia and other documents do not clarify this question.

The coat of arms of the Russian Empire, reintroduced by an edict of the president of the Russian Federation, is worth considering. Since 1625, three crowns stand over the double-headed eaglethe "three pillars" [literally whales] of the Russian statesymbols of the Kazan', Astrakhan', and Siberian khanates.4 This requires an explanation. It is very difficult to imagine that such a fact came about by chance. Until the taking of Kazan', the Muscovite princes had not resolved to call themselves tsars. With the conquest of the "Tatar tsardom," as Solov'ev writes, "a tsar in Rus' finally appeared."5 That which had been "the Russian land" [Russkaia zemlia]6 becomes Rossiia, or, in the words of N. M. Karamzin, "new Russia" [novaia Rossiia].7 Where then are the sources of Rossiia?

When the world was divided into communist and capitalist, the USSR had its vanguard position among the countries of the socialist camp. It was the legislator of ideology, politics, and even culture. This inspired and excused the existence of the state. In the new conditions, when we have departed from the former communist ideals but have not yet sided with the democratic ones, the idea of a middle position for Rossiia between East and West, as a particular rossiiskaia (Eurasian) civilization, is being advanced more frequently.

It is difficult to exclude Tatar elements, and Eastern elements in general, from the history and culture of Rossiia. Moscow is compelled to seek out compromise approaches both in politics and in ideology. This explains its flitting between Europe and Asia, as well as its claims to the affairs of both continents.

The logic of historical opposition

Writers of a majority of histories and texts attempt to present a conceptual foundation for the establishment of Rossiia in the form of a just struggle with the Tatar-Mongol yoke and the gradual affirmation of Moscow in the capacity of the "third Rome."8 Furthermore, the Russian people are given a certain messianic function, as the apparent savior of Europe from the invasion of the Tatar-Mongols. In his famous poem Skify [The Scythians], Aleksandr Blok wrote:

For youcenturies, for usa single hour.
We, like obedient serf-villeins,
Held the shield between the two hostile races
of the Mongols and of Europe!

In actuality, the events did not look quite so romantic. ...

The mutual relations of the Russians and the Tatars suffered a fair number of collisions. The first form of statehood of the Volga Tatars,9 the Bulgar khanate, arose in the tenth century. The ancestors of the Tatars accepted Islam as a state religion in 922; the Russians accepted Orthodoxy in 988. Trade and diplomacy moved along on their own steam; gradually, the Eastern European territories of the Orthodox and of the Islamic civilization took shape. They had to collide at some point. S. M. Solov'ev writes: "Once, when the Russian Slav had not yet begun to built Christian churches on the Oka, when he did not yet occupy these places in the name of European citizenship, the Bulgar was already listening to the Koran on the banks of the Volga and the Kama. Here, for the first time in northeastern Europe, Christianity collided with Busurmanism [Islam]. This collision was unavoidable as soon as the new Rus' was founded on the Upper Volga, as soon as Slavic colonization found a path along this river. The first princes of the new, northeastern Rus' Iurii Dolgorukii, Andrei Bogoliubskii, Vsevolod III, Iurii II waged war with the Bulgars and extended the borders of their realms to the mouth of the Oka into the Volga, where they secured them with Nizhnii Novgorod. It would have been difficult for the Bulgars to defend Asia and Mohammedanism against the pressure of Rus', but Asia sent out the Tatars, and the movement of Rus' to the east along the flow of the Volga was stopped for a long time."10

The invasion of the Tatar-Mongols fundamentally changed the flow of historical processes in this part of the world. In the thirteenth century, the Bulgar khanate and a number of Russian principalities found themselves incorporated by the Golden Horde. But the actual logic of opposition did not change. Both the Russians and the Volga Bulgars not only retained relative independence but even gained strength as centers of Orthodox and Islamic civilization.

The Mongols were distinguished by religious tolerance and did not break the cultural traditions of either the Bulgars or the Russians. Furthermore, according to Genghis Khan's Yasa [code], confirmed later, all religions were recognized as equal, and their ministers were released from the payment of tribute, giving a new impetus to religious figures.11 For example, in the pre-Mongol period, the fringes of the Slavic world remained pagan. "And only under the Tatar-Mongol yoke,'" writes Iu. Kobishchanov, "did the broad-based building of monasteries, the conversion of the rural population to Christianity, the transformation of the 'bears' comers' (as the pagan country of Rostov the Great was called) into Holy Rus' begin."12 Even the coerced introduction in 1312 by Uzbek-Khan of Islam as the state religion of the Horde did not affect the Russian principalities.13 The Yasa of Genghis Khan was unswervingly fulfilled. For example, in 1313, Uzbek-Khan issued an edict [yarlyk] to Piotr, the Metropolitan of Rus', with the following: "If anyone whosoever shall abuse Christianity or shall speak ill of churches, monasteries, and chapels, that person shall be subject to punishment by death."14

Stereotypes concerning the 'Tatar-Mongol yoke," formed from the schoolbench onward, are an obstacle to perceiving the character of these relations objectively. Idealization is unnecessaryin all times, strong states tried to conquer weak onesbut it is important for us to know the truth, to determine properly how rossiiskaia culture was formed. "The grandiose campaign of Batu in 1237-42," writes L. Gumelev. "had an overwhelming impression on his contemporaries. And yet this was, after all, just a big raid, not a systematically planned conquest, for which there would not have been enough people in the entire Mongol Empire. In actuality, the Mongolsneither in Rus', nor in Poland, nor in Hungarydid not leave garrisons, did not subject the population to continuous tax, and did not conclude unequal treaties with the princes. For this reason, the expression 'a country subdued, but not conquered' is completely untrue."15 The very expression "yoke" appeared much later, and reflected later ideological moods.e

At the end of the thirteenth century, in the conditions of a tense war within the Golden Horde, the Russian principalities had an opportunity to become independent, all the more so given that the number of Mongol warriors on the Volga was not great, but they did not do this. "On the contrary, independent Smolensk asked that it be accepted into the composition of the Ulus of Dzhuchiev, to defend against the encroachments of Lithuania, and for a time act as the shield of Rossiia. Tatar assistance stopped the onslaught from the west."16 Having concluded a military-political alliance with Batu, Aleksandr Nevskii brought to Rus' a Tatar corps with the experienced Noion [officer] Nevriu, and was able to stop the advance of the Germans on Novgorod and Pskov, which had historical consequences. In so doing, the tribute [dan'] (in the form of a tithe [desiatina]) was no more than a contribution into the common treasury for maintaining the army. Today's taxes into the federal budget are outright robbery in comparison with the Tatar tribute.17 It should be noted that the Russian Ulus was especially loyal to the Golden Horde, while first to fall away were Tiumen' (1428) and then Crimea and Kazan' (1438).18 Moscow supported the union with the Horde the longest of all.

The unusual union or symbiosis of Russians and Tatar-Mongols can be explained not by some sort of special sympathies, but by the point that for the Russians, the West, as personified by Lithuania, the Germans, and the Swedes, represented a greater threat than did the East. All the more so in view of the fact that the Mongols themselves were pagans or Christians (Nestorians)19 and were sympathetic toward Orthodoxy.

The situation was somewhat different with Islam, given such active bearers and proselytizers as the Volga Bulgars. Inasmuch as the Mongols were few and their cultural influence was restricted to the upper level of the state, with time the influence of Islam undeviatingly increased, until it had become the official religion. This reduced the influence of the Russian princes on the affairs of the Golden Horde and increased the weight of the Bulgars along the Volga.

If, on the one hand, a union of the Russians with the Mongols protected Rus' from invasions from the west, then, on the other hand, it laid the foundations of a new statehood. The unification of the Russian lands around Moscow began and took place thanks to the Golden Horde. We should remember the lamentable condition of Russian principalities at that time, having bled each other dry through mutual struggle. O. Kliuchevskii writes:

Only the image of Aleksandr Nevskii somewhat covered over the horror of the running wild and the fraternal hostility that broke through far too often among the Russian rulers, brothers, uncles, and cousins. If they had been left completely to their own devices, they would have torn apart their Rus' into unconnected appanage scraps, ever at enmity with one another.... The threat of Khan wrath restrained the bullies; more than once was a devastating internecine strife averted or stopped by the mercythat is, the willof the Khan. The power of the Khan was a rough-hewn Tatar knife, cutting through the knots into which the descendants of Vsevolod III tied up their land's affairs. Not in vain did the Russian chronicles call the unclean Hagar-ites the cudgel of God, making the sinners understand in order to bring them to the path of repentance.20

By the time the Golden Horde was falling apart, Muscovy had become so strong that it was able to unite the Russian principalities around itself, and had begun to conduct an active independent policy. It entered into alliance first with one khanate, then with another, for the sake of strengthening its influence on the territory of the former Golden Horde. "The disappearance of effective political power in Sarai did not break the relations among the former component parts of the Saraian empire," writes the well-known American historian Edward Keenan," the dynasties that appeared in the three most important centers (in Moscow, descendants of Vasilii I; in Bakhchisarai, of Khadzhi-Girei; in Kazan', of Ulug-Mukhammed) often united into blocs during this period of unstable alliances and changing destinies/ Once they had arisen, they created a strong union, which not only dominated in the steppe, but also defined Eastern European history to a significant extent during the course of half a century."21

Gradually, Muscovy's claims increased and it began to make attempts on the territories of the Kasimite, Kazan', Astrakhan', Crimean, and Siberian khanates. Prince N. S. Trubetskoi declared most categorically that at the end of the fifteenth century, " the Russian tsar was the successor of the Mongol khan. The 'overthrow of the Tatar yoke' boiled down to the replacement of the Tatar khan with an Orthodox tsar and to the transfer of the khan's headquarters to Moscow. "22 Such a conclusion is unexpected from the viewpoint of Soviet texts. However, many events of subsequent Russian history directly point to its justness. Tatars were willingly accepted into Russian service and became nobles; among them were names that would become the pride of Russian culture.23 Successors of the Golden Horde khans could lay claim to the Russian throne, as happened with Boris Go-dunov. The acute struggle of Godunov with the Romanovs and the Shuiskiis (from the line of Riurik) flared up because of the humble birth of Godunov. It is noteworthy that the opposition even, attempted to use the more high-born Semion Bekbulatovich (the former Kasimite khan) as an alternative. "The boyars needed Semion," writes R. G. Skrynnikov, "in order to impede the coronation of Godunov. The aristocracy was counting on making him an obedient toy in its hands."24 In so doing, neither the Romanovs nor the Shuiskiis had any doubt that the descendants of the khans had the right to occupy the throne of Rossiia. These facts point to the direct connection of Rossiia with the Golden Horde.

The Golden Horde had a huge influence in the destinies of many of the peoples of Europe and Asia. It was a glorious legacy worth fighting for. With the demise of the Kazan' khanate to Muscovy, the fight for this legacy came to a close. "The most immediate political and ideological consequences of the conquest of Kazan'," considers Jaroslaw Pelenski, "were dual: extemally, they can be seen in the taking by Ivan IV of the title tsar' of Kazan' and somewhat later tsar' of Astrakhan in addition to the title of Russian ruler, reflecting changes in the character of the Muscovite state. Until 1552, it existed first and foremost as the Great Russian state. With the acquisition of these new titles, Ivan IV affirmed his right to the thrones of the Golden Horde successor states, and thereby to that of the Golden Horde itself."25 From this time onward begins the history of Rossiia, which proudly places the Tatar crowns in its coat of arms.

And so, Rossiia was formed not on the soil of Kievan Rus'. which had already fallen apart into eight sovereign states as far back as the twelfth century, a whole century before the appearance of the Mongols. Its formation was not in rivalry with the Mongols, with whom the Russians had no frictions on religious or cultural grounds, since they had a mutual interest in protecting the western borders. Rossiia arose on a thoroughly new Muscovite soil, which had been an organic part of Golden Horde statehood; it grew from the rivalry of Muscovy with the kingdoms of the Golden Horde for the right of inheritance to the great state that was falling apart. The start of this process was the taking by Ivan the Terrible of Kazan', which became a milestone, marking the foundation epoch (or, more accurately, the re-constitution) of the empire within the borders of the former state of Gengnis Khan, but already on a different conceptual basisOrthodoxy. Specifically for this reason the relations of Kazan' and Moscow had a special, in a certain sense symbolic, significance in the history and politics of Rossiia.26

The traditions of the Golden Horde were long rooted in the life of Rossiia. Many laws and elements of culture of the Golden Horde were so firmly entrenched that they continued to exist up until the epoch of Peter the Great. Here is what the historian M. Khudiakov writes: "The state system introduced by the conquerors in the defeated country represented the pinnacle of careful consideration and discipline in comparison with that patriarchal system that had existed in Rus' prior to the Tatars. The Russians had become acquainted with the fundamental principles of state culture through the Tatars: for the first time, the entire population was accounted for by means of censuses, and the coercive system of assessments, taxes, and duties left nothing to be desired in its precise application. Universal censuses, introduced in Rossiia for the first time by the Tatars, required a huge cadre of literate and experienced officialsin this were reflected the traditions of Chinese cultureand old pre-Tatar Rus', where literacy existed only among the clergy, the merchants, and the Grand Princes, could not have even imagined anything like this. The very scale of the state-wide undertaking was more than appanage Rus', broken up into tiny pieces, with its poor rulers (who, it goes without saying, could not have even dreamed of the colossal revenues being collected by the khans from the conquered peoples), could handle."27 Historically, Rossiia took in much from non-Russian peoples and to. this day it carries this legacy within itself as a subculture, manifestly or subtly influencing the mentality of the Russian people. Napoleon had grounds to utter the famous words: "Scratch any Russian and you will find a Tatar."

With the conquest of Kazan', the old dispute between Orthodoxy and Islam on the shores of the Volga intensified. Ivan the Terrible, on entering the Kazan' Kremlin on 2 October 1552, laid the foundation of the Cathedral of the Annunciation and simultaneously built the Shrine of Vasilii the Blessed [St. Basil's Cathedral] on Red Square in Moscow as a symbol of the victory of Orthodoxy over Islam.

Orthodoxy became the banner of the wars of conquest; it was built with state power, while the conversion of non-Russian peoples [inorodtsy] to Christianity became a part of domestic policy. But at the very beginning of this policy, the attitude toward other religions and peoples was sufficiently tolerant. The "Asiatic" population was a source of pride, and not condemnation. It was an organic element of Russian life: the Russian language and culture were permeated with Tatar borrowings, many Tatars were in the entourage of Ivan the Terrible, while the Kasimite khanate remained a self-administering [samostoiatel'naia] territory within the Russian state for a long time.

Rossiia did not start to shun the Tatar legacy until Westernizing orientations set in. Peter the Great turned the policy of Rossiia sharply in the direction of the West. He literally planted Western manners, technology, and science, although he was not successful in changing the essence of Russian culture. "The reform carried out by Peter the Great," writes O. Kliuchevskii, "did not have as its direct aim to re-fashion either the political, or the social, or the moral order established in this state, nor was it guided by the task of placing Russian life onto Western European foundations to which it was unaccustomed or of introducing new borrowed principles, but was limited to striving to equip the Russian state and people with ready-made Western European intellectual and material means, and thereby place the state on the same level as the battle-ready states of Europe, and raise the people's labors to the level of their full potential."28 Nevertheless, it was specifically under Peter that the Westernizing direction in the development of the state collided with the Slavophile one. The new capital on the banks of the Neva, built like a typically European city, was a challenge to the "Eastern" Moscow. In consequence, the "struggle" of the two capitals haunted Rossiia during the course of centuries, having become an inseparable part of the consciousness of Russian society.

Peter first undertook steps to weaken the role of Orthodoxy in the affairs of state. But he did not try to help non-Russians pull their lives together, nor did he have any thought of doing so. He was also little concerned with his own Russian people, who were but a weapon for effecting transformation, rather than the focal point.

In response to the policy of coerced conversion to Christianity, a part of the Tatars dispersed throughout Rossiia or moved to Muslim countries, while the part remaining in the motherland rose up in insurrections. The opposition with the inorodtsy, dangerous for the authorities, compelled Catherine the Great to issue an edict on religious tolerance and to recognize partially the rights of Muslims. Islam, deprived of state support in the sixteenth century and driven by the zealous upholders of Orthodoxy into the forests and the remote comers of Tatar society, began to experience a rapid renaissance. The 1905 Revolution, by removing many of the legal restrictions on Muslims, provided a new impetus for the Tatar renaissance. By the 1917 Revolution, the Tatars had restored many social structures: a political and intellectual elite, an economically strong merchant class and sectors of industry, a press, an educational system, and science. In the State Duma an influential Muslim faction arose. When the Tatars declared the creation of their own state in 1918, all the necessary economic, political, and spiritual prerequisites were in place.

The Soviet period in the life of Rossiia moved the old dispute between the two civilizations onto a new course. Both Orthodoxy and Islam were subjected to persecutions. But in the ethnic sense, the situation looked preferable for the Russians, for their language and culture retained their dominant position, at the same time as the lot awaiting the Tatars was that of "coming closer together" [sblizhenie] and "merging" [sliianie]. But, having four hundred years' worth of experience in surviving, the Tatars lived through the seventy years of the Soviet regime as well.

Today, Rossiia as a cultural space remains extremely nonhomoge-neous. In the absence of the "iron curtain," Islamic and Turkic influence on Tatarstan and other republics-has intensified, borders that had at one time been created artificially have opened up, and the Tatars have found themselves connected to a huge world, where a multitude of civilizations and cultures exists. Mosques are being actively built, medressehs [religious schools] are being opened, and secular national schools are being reborn, and not only in Tatarstan and Bashkortostan, but in practically every place where Tatars reside in compact groups.

At the same time, the Russians are calling for a renaissance of their own culture. In this case, the term "renaissance" carries a highly unclear character. Russian culture and language were not prohibited; more likely the oppositethey were implanted among other peoples, and with rather harsh methods at times. The call for Russian renaissance more likely reflects an emotional dissatisfaction with the Soviet period, when the extermination of Orthodoxythe most important feature of the ethnic self-identification of the Russianswas taking place.

There can be no argument that, even today, Rossiia feels itself an exclusively Orthodox state, which is clearly visible from the example of the attitude of the leaders of the state toward Orthodox holidays and rites, the building of shrines, and so forth. The restoration of the Cathedral of the Savior in Moscow was a strictly state task, bearing an ideological character and not a religious one. Indicative is the attitude of Russian official organs to the problem of the Serbs. Rossiia openly went against the opinion of the world community, defending the Serbs and thereby causing harm to its international prestige. A pan-Slavic attitude is almost nonexistent among Russians today, but there can be no argument that an Orthodox orientation is present. Georgians, Armenians, and Greeks are closer to the Russians than are Catholic Slavs: Poles, Croats, and Czechs.

Through the establishment of Rossiia, Russian culture was able to assimilate many Turkic and Finno-Ugric tribes, but the population that had adopted Islam resisted Orthodox cultural expansion. The Tatars were able to preserve their identity and even to develop an independent culture, distinct from the common Russian one. They were preserved as a little island of Islamic and Turkic civilization in the midst of a Russian, Orthodox ocean. The dynamic development of Islamic reformism made Tatar culture well adapted for new trends, easily absorbing the leading-edge ideas of Russian and Western culture.g

In such a manner, present-day social processes continue the ancient historical traditions of counterposing two civilizations: Orthodoxy and Islam. The Russian elite cannot but take account of unsubdued Islam. It will also not be able to avoid having to deal with the Asiatic origin of Rossiia. Many feel this, and attempt to find a conciliatory position.

In search of a new paradigm

In recent years, the communist ideals have lost [their] one-time attractiveness, although the specter of communism still continues to haunt Europe.

Riding the anticommunist wave, many public figures have at-tempted to devise a new worldview for Rossiia. In their absolute majority, they reasoned like true politicians fighting for power, and for this reason asked themselves an extremely practical question: "What is to be done?" Iurii Afanas'ev, Gennadii Burbulis, Gavriil Popov, Aleksandr [Anatolii] Sobchak, Arkadii [Egor] Gaidar ... this cohort of leaders had grown up thanks primarily to the multitude of Moscow rallies and had burst onto the political horizon like comets, leaving behind a bright but short-lived trace. Some spectators, apparently, were quick enough to be able to make a wish. ... But there is no guarantee that these wishes will be fulfilled. This cohort is still alive, their faces flash across the television screens, but they have already become history, and today it is even difficult to recall what views they were defending. They were not able to create an ideology of democracy that would be suitable for the conditions of Rossiia and comprehensible to the post-Soviet mentality of the rossiiskii person. What remains from them is the feeling that all that needs to be done is to simply imitate the West, to copy their state structure, and to consume more of their products.h In response, social trends with an anti-Western direction have appeared. The democratic wave has retreated in the ideological sphere and its place has been taken by theories with a national-patriotic flavor.

The elections in 1993 to the State Duma have shown that "state ideas, especially in their extreme, re-integrative forms, have begun to attract the increasing sympathies of Rossiiany. The popularity of the national-patriotic parties and movements has grown over two and a half years by 55 percentage points."29 At the same time, these same elections have shown that "the universal values of Western democracy are retreating these days to the periphery of the mass consciousness just as rapidly as had the values of the Communist yesterday."30 The elections to the State Duma in 1995 confirmed and reinforced this trend. From the former cohort of democrats, only the "Yabloko" bloc managed to break the 5-percent barrier, and that with difficulty. During the time of the Presidential elections, A. Lebed' rapidly rose [to a prominent position] on patriotic ideas, and G. Ziuganov was forced to make up with the Church, while B. Yeltsin made a significant turn to the left in his views, at the same time trying to demonstrate toughness and supreme-leadership.

Proimperial, "great-power" [derzhavnye] chauvinistic, national-patriotic ideas have become popular. Citations from,the speeches of Zhirinovsky, Barkashov, Anpilov, and others have become commonplace and no longer surprise the inhabitants. In recent years, openly fascistic conceptions have appearedmoreover, not in a rough-hewn form, but refined, logically well-put-together, and decent-looking on the surface.i

To the question: "Will Rossiia be a fascist state?" Aleksandr Sevast'ianov responds: "Yes, it will. Certainly. Inevitably. Definitely." "Fascism," he continues, "is nothing other than the dictatorship of national capital. No more and no less. Think about it: the dictatorship of national capital ... This is exactly what Rossiia needs, like bread, like air. Nationalnot international, like today! Such a dictatorship as a reaction to today's state of affairs will certainly arise, as soon as national capital gains strength and rallies together, as soon as our industrialists, traders, and financiers come to understand once and for all that in one's country, one can and should be the master, and not the servant. This will take around ten years."31

A. Sevast'ianov is building his conception on the real contradictions and errors of the democrats, at the same time rejecting communist slogans and keeping as far away as possible from Orthodoxy as an archaic ideology. He criticizes Yeltsin and calls for a markettrue, a purely national one, closed, fenced off from foreign capital. He has made maximum use of fundamental sympathies and antipathies in the public consciousness. At the same time, he dissociates himself from such obviously inexpedient (seemingly "not mandatory") features of fascism as Jewish ghettoes, the unleashing of foreign wars, and terror against the intelligentsia. Modernized, "intelligentsia" fascism does not look absurd, although you could never call it harmlessly innocent.

Sevast'ianov associates the usual notions concerning fascism with its "German" form, which, apparently, was what had given birth to the horrors of World War II. But he himself, calling for a "pure" form of fascism, not clouded over with German and Spanish practice, nevertheless proposes specifically a nationalRussianform. "One has to understand clearly," he writes, "that our Russian ancestors created our country not for the Tatars or for the Armenians, not for the Chechens or the Jews, but first and foremost for us, the Russians, for our grandsons and great-grandsons."32 Rossiia he understands to be a state of the Russians and for the Russians. "There is no such single 'rossiiskaia nation,' it does not exist in nature, just as there never was a 'Soviet people.' All of this is just another myth. There are [ethnic] Russians, there are those who want to be Russians, there are the friendlies, and then there are people who are hostilely disposed toward Russians. Such is the initial situation in our country. National capitalism in Rossiia cannot and should not be 100 percent [ethnic] Russian, but it can be 82 percent."33 The Jewish ghettoes in fascist Germany did not arise right at the start. And the concentration camps were not foreseen by the intellectual ideologues of the Third Reich. But the actual principle of identifying one people in the capacity of the chosen one inevitably leads to those supposedly "not mandatory" features that manifested themselves in Germany, Italy, and Spain.

The most sober politicians understand that one must avoid extremes and find a unifying idea that would not repeat the communist slogans, but at the same time could answer to the historical traditions of Rossiia and become the foundation for the integrity of the state.

Rossiia has: lived the past few years in constant fear that the same situation as occurred with the [Soviet] Union would repeat itself. This fear was not so much rational as mystical, fatalistic, born of a sense of guilt and inevitability of punishment for the collapse of the USSR.34 After all, even Lenin gave away Finland and Polandnot of his own free will, but because he was coerced into itbecause he was unable to hold on to them with force. In one "Belovezh night," Yeltsin managed to lose everything that those great-grandfathers and grandfathers had been putting together for hundreds of years, having laid many a generation of young people to rest on the field of battle, having squeezed all of the juices out of the country for the sake of conquering new peoples and territories. He bartered away the ringing of swords for the ringing of goblets. Will he ever be forgiven such a sin?!-j

The Federal organs reacted very painfully to anyeven the most innocent, but nevertheless self-administeringopinion from the republics; they treated any "disobedience" on the part of the subjects [republics, oblasts, and krais] as separatism. Politicians, ideologists, and writers conjured to stop the breakup that ostensibly had begun, to prohibit the "parade of sovereignties," to liquidate the republics, to crush any imaginary resistance with force. Everyone placed hopes on the magic number of 82 percent (the ratio of [ethnic] Russians in Rossiia); it became something like a talisman. It was repeated in appropriate places and in inappropriate ones. "Rossiia is the most monoethnic country in the world!" was written ecstatically in newspapers and scholarly articles. "Nowhere in the world is it permitted for small peoples to encroach upon the integrity of the state!" "The power [derzhava] is inviolable!" "Down with the separatists!" "OffthemOff [ATUikhATU!]. The army was increasingly viewed as the supposedly most reliable means of solving all problems for Rossiia.

And finally, the voice was heard and war came to pass in Chechnya. But the threat of the breakup of Rossiia, despite expectations, did not move aside, but, on the contrary, became more real, for the feeling of distrust among the peoples of Rossiia toward Moscow, which had begun to be forgotten, once again increased after the incursion into Groznyi. Together with this, in the political arena, the struggle between the "democratic" and the "patriotic" forces intensified. A "Chechnya syndrome" enhanced, on the one hand, the "power" [derzhavnaia] orientation, and, on the other, generated a feeling of uncertainty in the army's capabilities and in coercive methods. Many [ethnic] Russians are ready today to resign themselves to the loss of Chechnyathey had, after all, come to terms with the breakup of the USSR.35

Chechnya turned from a local crisis into a global one. It threw the international community into confusion and forced it to reexamine relations with Rossiia. Of course, the world community is not particularly worried about the situation of the Chechens, and they can even easily close their eyes to the violation of human rights out of "political considerations." They are moved by other motivesprimarily the fear that a "Bosniazation" will begin in Rossiia, many times more dangerous than the war in the former Yugoslavia, for on the expanses of Rossiia is stored an inestimable quantity of weaponry, and poorly guarded at that.

And so, the situation has led to the need to work out a common ideological foundation, enabling the formulation of Rossiia-wide values. The politicians were faced with a choice: either to suppress the peoples of Rossiia by force, as had been done for hundreds of years, or to create a new philosophy. The latter may be a coerced decision, but it is the preferred one, taking the international and domestic situation into consideration. "The overarching task of the national-power ideology as an organizational institution," writes V. V. Il'in, "is twofold: first, it must create a model of national consolidation on the basis of a realistic program of durable and unintrusive life, and second, create a model balancing the horizontal-ethnic and the vertical-state, which in our situation in Rossiia is extremely important, given the acuity of relations of the center with the periphery and the regions with federal institutions."36 Another well-known philosopher, N. N. Moiseev, writes in the same spirit: "Belonging to different tribes with different languages was a characteristic of the Russian state throughout its history. And its civilization easily absorbed Ugro-Finnic, Turkic, and Mongol elements into itself. And Russian society easily included non-Russians within itself. ... The ability to live with these peoples in the future may become one of the most important supports buttressing Eurasian civilization."37 The search for a conciliatory worldview will apparently become the central task of the political forces of Rossiia in the next few years.

If we ignore the extremes that are unavoidable in an "epoch of discord," we will uncover a striving to affirm in the public consciousness the idea of a rossiiskaia or (identical in practice) "Eurasian civilization." It is far, from new, but attempts are being made to utilize it in the new conditions. Indeed, it seems extremely advantageous to occupy a place somewhere in the middle between Europe and Asia; after all, the very conquest of new lands and peoples in Rossiia went from the West to the East. The Russians penetrated deeper into Asia, absorbing the Oriental culture and mentality. In Asia, the Russians were always viewed as Europeans, while in Europe, they were considered Asians. A middle position looks extremely natural and attractive, at least at first glance.

Rossiia between West and East

In the past few centuries, Rossiia has behaved more like a European power than an Asiatic one. Dynastic marriages, wars on the European theater, and political alliances confirm this. And the Soviet period was a continuation of this tendencysocialism, which found fertile soil in Rossiia, was a European invention. True, Europe itself was somewhat weighted down, and today remains weighted by Rossiia's claims to have influence over its affairs.

The founding fathers of Eurasianism, headed by N. S. Trubetskoi, P. N. Savitskii, and G. V. Vernadskii, considered the territory of Rossiia to be a self-sufficient space, a special world, a special civilization. "The national substrate of that state that formerly was called the Empire of Rossiia and now is called the USSR," wrote Tmbetskoi in 1927, "can only be the entire aggregate of the peoples populating this state, regarded as a special multiethnic nation and, in such a capacity, possessing a special nationalism. This nation we call the Eurasian, its territoryEurasia, its nationalismEurasianism."38 This ideology is aimed not at the unification of East and West, but, on the contrary, at resisting both.k "We must accustom ourselves to the thought," wrote Tmbetskoi, "that the Romano-Germanic world with its culture is our most evil enemy."39 Of course, the situation in Europe in the 1920s-30s had a strong emotional influence on Eurasianism's founders. Today's situation is radically different from the prewar one; nevertheless, present-day followers of Eurasianism express themselves in the same spirit as did their predecessors. "We must be prepared to do battle on two fronts," writes V. II'in.40 If the first threat is apparently coming from Western Europe, then the second one emanates from China.

Despite the common Christian foundations that link the Russians with Europe and the Slavic roots that unite [them] with Eastern Europe, the Eurasianists consider them an alien and even hostile culture. The Slavic peoples, not that long ago still in the orbit of Russian interests with the help of the Warsaw Pact, are today self-determining within the framework of Europe without Rossiia and often against Rossiia. Slovenia, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia are rushing to join NATO; a common European home suits them more than does a Slavic union. And only Bulgaria is trying to occupy a position that is conciliatory with Rossiia. These new tendencies confirm the historical relations of Rossiia with other countries. With Catholic Poland, Rossiia always found itself in a state of open or concealed enmity. At the same time, it maintained sympathies toward the Orthodox Serbs and Bulgars, up to the armed protection of their interests. The historical sympathies and priorities of the Russians in foreign affairs have remained unchanged today as well. Their basis is Orthodoxy.

The leaders of Rossiia display an evident displeasure with the expansion of NATO at the expense of the former satellite-countries of Moscow; their claims to control over the countries of the former USSR and influence on the politics of the Central European countries are exhibiting an increasingly anti-Western character. The reorientation of the former "democrats" with an openly Westernizer orientation toward resistance to the West is associated with the general mood in the country. It is no longer just the communists and the national-patriots who are talking about the exploitation of Rossiia and of the transformation of its economy into a raw-materials appendage of the West, but also some moderates and deputies seeking the support of the latter.

The views and hopes of the present-day Eurasianists are directed inward. "Enough has already been said," asserts N. N. Moiseev, "to be able to see how distinct the civilization of Rossiia is from the civilization of the 'European Peninsula,' and to understand that an attempt to become part of it is both hopeless and dangerous. Our future is associated with becoming aware of our own rossiiskaia civilization, both as a value in itself and as a planetary value. This is the context for Eura-sianism to be considered a civilization of two oceans, having its East the countries of the Pacific Ocean regionand its South, which the classical Eurasianist idea regarded as integral to the East."41

More than once in the history of Rossiia internal unity was attained in the face of an external enemy. When there was no real enemy, one was invented. Eurasianists thought of Rossiia as trapped by its own borders and unable to integrate itself with either the West or the East. "In the face of the East, the West knows that it is the West. But in exactly the same way, in the face of the West, the East knows that it is the East. Rossiiskaia civilization in this sense is distinguished by the solitude of its status between the East and the West," asserts A. S. Panarin.42

And so, the territory of Eurasia as a Eurasianist political concept includes the historical territory of Rossiia in the borders of the turn of the century, actively resisting both the West and the East. "From the point of view of the Eurasianists," generalizes I. Isaev, " Eurasia is not at all the aggregate of all of the territories of the two continents of Europe and Asia, but a part of these territories that coincides with the borders of the Empire of the Genghisids, the Russian Empire, the USSR, on which similar forms of statehood and culture are constantly reproducing themselves."43

The appearance in the theory of Eurasianism of the Genghisid empire is not accidental. It is easy to imagine the history of the establishment of Rossiia as the restoration of the state of Genghis Khan. In the opinion of Eurasianism's founders, "the Mongols formulated the historical task of Eurasia, having laid the basis for its political unity and for the foundations of its political system." In so doing, the Empire of Rossiia as the inheritor of the Mongol state nearly completed the state unification of the Eurasian continent and, "having defended it from the encroachments of Europe, created strong political traditions."44

The in-between, intercontinental position of Rossiiathe mixing of bloods, the culture richly flavored with Eastern (in the main Tatar) elements in the language, traditions, and psychology, apparently allow one to speak of a uniquely rossiiskaia civilization, not only distinct from the European and the Asian, but also having an internal coupling. But this only seems that way from a superficial viewpoint. A more profound analysis uncovers irreconcilable contradictions in the theory of Eurasianism.

The "Achilles' heel" of Eurasianism

A substantive characteristic of modem approaches to rossiiskaia civilization is the union of the Russians with the Turkic and other peoples. "The supporting structure of our state is the union of the Slavic and Turkic peoples. Without this, Rossiia cannot be preserved; without this, Rossiia will split asunder to the Volga and beyond," writes A. S. Panarin, reflecting the opinion of quite a broad circle of modem thinkers.45 In another place, he also asserts: 'There is no way that we can keep a united Rossiia if we do not creatively reinforce ourselves by imagining a sort of new historical, sociocultural synthesis of Slavicism and Mussulmanism on our territory, within the framework of our state. In other words, we are speaking of the restoration of a single spiritual space, permitting the Slavic and Turanic elements in our Eurasia to be integrated."46 Explaining the reasons for integration, the Eurasianists see a threat emanating from the "yellow race." Muslims and Slavs on their own, they consider, cannot withstand an "onslaught from the Pacific Ocean."

As long as the Eurasianist conception remains on the soil of Orthodoxy and Russian identity, it appears rather convincing. Even succession from the Mongols has its logic, inasmuch as among the latter there were many Christians, readily cooperating with Orthodoxy. Things get more complicated with Muslim and Turkic peoples. Not only was the Tatar culture very different from the Mongol, but it also was not susceptible to assimilation. The epoch of the Golden Horde unquestionably had a strong influence, not in the sense of assimilation, but more likely on the contraryby strengthening [Tatar] uniqueness.

The Tatar ethnos had always sensed not an external but an internal threat to its security. For it, China is far away, and even Europe does not represent any threat at all. The Tatars, as. indeed, the rest of the Turkic and Muslim people in Rossiia as well, were not allowed access to state administration; thus they do not consider the security of all Rossiia. They are interested in the problem of their own ethnic security. This is completely natural.

Attempts were made to convert the Tatars to Christianity, and these attempts were partially successful. If they remained true to Islam, they were deprived of land and nobility. As a result, the Tatar people were deprived of their aristocracy, as some went over to service for Russians, while others went to mosques and medressehs or to tilling the soil. The Tatars were dispersed through the world; today, a mere 25 percent of their overall number live in Tatarstan. In the Soviet period, the written language was switched to the Cyrillic alphabet. Mosques, schools, newspapers, and publications were closed. Only very naive people can rationalize about an apparently traditional historical "Slavic-Turkic unity." It could be discussed as an aspiration, as a possible future union, if, of course, the principles of such a union were developed.

Today, there are not many obstacles to the development of Tatar culture, as had been the case in the recent past. But all of this happened, after all, not thanks to the Russian state but in spite of it. In Rossiia, attending to the Tatars is not the federal state, which collects taxes from them, but Tatarstan, which does not have the financial capabilities to support all Tatars. But let us abstract ourselves from concrete life and write all of this off to "foolish" practice. The Eu-rasianists, were they in power, would perhaps have acted differently. In the meantime, let us look at what they propose in theory. How do the Eurasianists resolve the problem of uniting Islam and Orthodoxy, or the whole question of the non-Russian part of Rossiia?

The heart of the Eurasianist ideology is Orthodoxy, which, according to their conceptions, defines the entire structure of spiritual life. In their theory, there is no place for the person or for peoples. The idea of the Eurasianist state is self-sufficient and exhaustive; more than that, it demands sacrifices on the part of the individual. In this deified state, not only is there no room for the individual, but also for another ideology, party, or opinion. The non-Orthodox part of Rossiia is regarded by the Eurasianists as a "potentially Orthodox world." What they are proposing, apparently, is that the non-Russians must strive on their own toward Orthodoxy as to a special value. Its Truth must, apparently, win adherents by itself. Such messianism, in general characteristic of Russians, is present in its Eurasianism as well.

History, on the other hand, tells a different story. Even coerced conversion to Christianity did not make the Tatars reject their faith, and this is all the more impossible to achieve voluntarily. Today, there remains little hope for the assimilation of other peoples. Consequently, the question of the interaction of Orthodoxy and Islam in Rossiia has not yet been resolved by the Eurasianists, but then their fundamental thesis concerning the existence of a rossiiskaia civilization is in question. Indisputable is the existence of a Russian Orthodox civilization, dominant in Rossiia, but highly questionable is the thesis concerning a rossiiskaia civilization, supposedly uniting Slavic and Turkic peoples, Christians and Muslims. They are held together by a stateand moreover, a state not as a community, but as a territory.

Eurasianists in search of common features of Slavic and Turkic peoples turn to certain moral and social values. I. Vasilenko writes: "Characteristic of the Slavs and the Turkic-speaking peoples is the priority given to collectivistic foundations over individualistic ones. The value of the person is defined here first and foremost by the execution of his duty to the community. Such an approach is very far from the aims of the European mentality, where one's value as an individual is the cornerstone."47 At one time, this was indeed so, but it is hardly likely that it united the Slavic and Turkic peoples at that time, for the communities were distinct and correspondingly duty was understood differently. Today, in an ironic twist of fate, individualism is developing among both Russians and Tatars.

At the end of the eighteenth-beginning of the nineteenth centuries, the reformist movement among the Tatars (Jadidism) united the ideas of liberalism with Islam, thus advancing personal integrity and free thought to the primary place. Individualism among Tatars received its ideological base in the nature of reformed Islam.

Orthodoxy, of course, retains within itself the idea of collectivity [sobornost'] and community today as well, but the twentieth century introduced many new trends into society. The peasantry, as the bearer of community ideas, became the minority; as a counterbalance, an urban culture developed with unconcealed individualism and entre-preneurism. The level of education increased the role of the individual. The high-technology economy of Rossiia insistently demands a creative approach, discoveries, and individuality, impossible to compensate for by any kind of collectivism. Indeed, one of the causes of perestroika is the fact that collectivism, as an element of the communist ideology, had started to become diluted by new social trends that had pushed the individual and his rights to the forefront.

Growing individualism and the values of democracy unite Russians and Tatars more than do doubtful traditional norms. Free and educated individuals, open to the outside world, irrespective of ethnic membership, have much more in common than closed-off Orthodox and Muslim communities.

One of the theses of the modem-day Eurasianists is the principle of the single, indivisible destiny of all of the peoples of Rossiia. Knowing the weakness of the Eurasianist conception in the resolution of the problems of the non-Russian peoples, it is very difficult to believe in the usefulness of this principle; it looks not like a reflection of the common value orientations of various peoples, but more like a harsh prescription for them. "From that space, one cannot emigrate at will either to the south, or to Europe, or to anyplace else," assert modem-day Eurasianists.48 In such an understanding, the principle of indivisible destiny looks like a geographical principle elevated to the rank of political dogma. It requires explanations. If the "new civilizational synthesis on the territory of Eurasia" is being planned without the use of force, then it is necessary to explain why the Muslim and the Turkic peoples will decide upon such a union.

It is obvious that the social values advanced by Russians must be acceptable for the other peoples of Rossiia. The battle "on two fronts," and, consequently, isolation from the world in a self-sufficient space will be difficult to accept for the Tatars, and indeed for many other peoples. In actuality, a Turkic civilization does existTatar, Bashkir, Yakut [Sakha], Chuvash, and other peoples are an inalienable part of it. The Tatar language is a key one in the Turkic group, and the Tatars have made no small contribution to the development of pan-Turkic culture and to an actual ideology of Turkism itself. Such names as Yusuf Akcura, Sadri, Maksudi, Gayaz Ishaki, and Musa Bigiev are known throughout the Turkic world.

A Muslim civilization exists. The Tatars are not only a part of this huge world and not only adherents of this religionthey are the northernmost outpost of Islam and its active propagators. Thanks to their efforts, Islam has spread in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Siberia, and even Japan. Tatar communities serve as bearers of Islam not only throughout Rossiia but also in Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltic States, Poland, and Finland. It is impossible to imagine Muslim civilization without such Tatar enlighteners as Kursavi, Marcani [Merjani], Alimjan Barudi, or Rizaeddin Fahretdinov [Fahreddin].l And finally, Tatars created an original movement in IslamJadidismwhich today is called "Euro-Islam."

To restrict the Tatars within the framework of Russian civilization is practically impossible, for this creates insurmountable obstacles to [Tatar] development. For the Tatars, openness of the social system, direct relations with the various countries of the world, and direct access, both to the East and to the West, are important in principle.

Tatar culture was always open to utilizing advanced values. A striving to preserve their traditions and ethnic identity never stood in the way of the Tatars' studying other cultures, including the Russian one. The latter had a huge influence on the social consciousness of the Tatars at the turn of the twentieth century. Russian writers and thinkers were then indisputable authorities for the Tatars. Today, there are no Tolstoys, Dostoevskys, Chekhovs, or Berdiaevs. Russian philosophy and culture are experiencing an intense crisis, and for this reason have lost their former attractiveness. For full development, Tatarstan needs direct access to European culture without intermediaries. The most outstanding Tatar politicians strove toward this the entire twentieth century, and today, the republic is fully ready to emerge on its own into world culture.

At the same time, for the Tatars (as, indeed, for Tatarstan), the spread in Rossiia of such European values as human rights and the rights of peoples, democratic principles for running the country, and the recognition of peace ensured without force is vitally important. Without such values, the very fact of the existence of the Tatars as an ethnos comes into question. If rossiiskaia civilization will cut itself off from them, then it will end up in contradiction with the aspirations of many peoples of Rossiia.

For many years, distrust toward Moscow as the center had built up among the peoples ofRossiia. It would not be accurate to idealize the past and to fall into euphoria over a "mutual understanding of the peoples" throughout centuries of cohabitation, as some have been known to imagine.49 These relations were far from cloudless. History testifies to uninterrupted insurrections, to various forms of resistance to Russian colonization and conversion to Christianity. At times people were forced to forsake familiar places for Asia or Turkey. Catherine the Great's Edict on Religious Tolerance can be explained not by her enlightened views, but as a necessary step in response to mass demonstrations of Muslims.

Ordinary people at times were able to get along with one another and found a common language. But then there was also the state, which often did not treat [ethnic] Russians any better than it did non-Russians, yet nevertheless acted in the name of the [ethnic] Russians. The Soviet time did not increase trust in the state; more likely the opposite. And in recent times, distrust was intensified by the Chechen events. In what way, then, can mutual understanding be created between the peoples as a foundation for a "civilized synthesis," how can fear of the state be removed, and, most important, in what way can the policy of the state of Rossiia with respect to its peoples be changed?

Instead of the principle of a single destiny, it would make more sense from the beginning to proclaim the principle of rejecting force for resolution of interethnic and other domestic-policy problems. This is extremely important and is only a preliminary condition. True, for Rossiia this is quite unusual, inasmuch as it contradicts centuries-old traditions, it contradicts that phenomenon called rossiiskaia civilization, but it would be naive to think that a "union of peoples" could possibly be formed in any other way.

In many countries, various peoples with very different cultures coexist in peace. In Europe, no small number of Muslims live, as well as [Subcontinental] Indians and emigrants from Southeast Asia, all adhering to their religion, habits, and traditions. They live in communities; open schools; go to mosques, temples, and synagogues. In Rossiia, things are different. Not only because democracy in Europe has worked out rational forms of autonomy for different communities, but also because in Rossiia, Tatars, Bashkirs, Yakuts [Sakha], Chechens, and others are indigenous peoples, not migrants or inorodtsy. They have no reason to ask the government for permission to speak in their native tongue. They dare to demand this, as the masters of that land where they live. And for this reason, civilizational and culturological questions are different in Rossiia than they are in Europe.

The American scholar S. Huntington wrote the sensational article "Clash of Civilizations?" which brought about a mass of objections both in the United States and in Rossiia.m Certain Russian ideologues glimpsed in it an evil intentan attempt to cause a collision between the Muslims of Rossiia and [ethnic] Russians, in order, apparently, to weaken Rossiia.

After the end of the Cold War, the world entered a new phase of development of world politics, requiring its own interpretation. Huntington considers "that the fundamental source of conflict in this new world will not be primarily ideological or economic. The great divisions among humankind and the dominating source of conflicts will be cultural. Nation-states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battlelines of the future."50 Unfortunately, the events of recent years indicate that such assertions are not without some foundation. This is demonstrated particularly vividly by the former Yugoslavia, where "fraternal" Slavic peoples, speaking practically the same language, waged war, after dividing into Orthodox, Catholics, and Muslims.

In Huntington's view, Orthodoxy, Islam, and Buddhism are different civilizationscoexisting but not merging worlds. For this reason, if one follows his logic, Russians, Tatars, Buryats, Finno-Ugrians, peoples of the Caucasus, and so forth lived and live in one state, but in different civilizational worlds. For the most part, these peoples found themselves in Rossiia by force. Of course, some peoples entered Rossiia voluntarily, following the call of the heart, being close to the Russians in spirit, with conversion to Orthodoxy; but they are mostly assimilated, with only the historical names of cities and rivers remaining to remind specialist-ethnographers of their former existence. Those that survived are those that have preserved their membership in other civilizations.

A "clash of civilizations" need not necessarily end in war or conflict. Peoples are fully capable of agreeing on peaceful coexistence. Let us remember how bloody were the relations between Catholics and Protestants in the past. Today, they comprise the foundation of a single European civilization. At the same time, even membership in one religion (civilization) does not guarantee against internal wars. An approach stressing civilizations does not explain all of the diversity of relations between peoples, but it does force us to think about certain fundamental foundations of society. Ignoring this is not without its dangers.

Under Russian civilization today can be understood only the Orthodox worldview. The remaining ideological directions have not taken root in the soil of Rossiia. The communist ideology attempted to recast peoples on a single class basis, but it suffered a fiasco. An attempt to adopt some sort of common democratic norms came up against the Chechen conflict and was buried under the ruins of Groznyi. There is no rossiiskaia civilizationonly Orthodox, Muslim, and other civilizations coexisting in one state, yet not forming a single community. lu. Kobishchanov is entirely correct in writing: "As in all of the periods of its historical existence, Rossiia will be a system of several civilizations, with the Islamic having one of the central places."51

Eurasianism in the present-day treatment is an ideological cloak for the old, tried and true policy of territorial claims. This is an attempt to restore the state within the borders of the USSR or of the Russian Empire, having in the process counterposed one's pseudoculture both to the West and to the East. N. Berdiaev wrote: "In Eurasianism are ... elements that are pernicious and poisonous, which it is imperative to oppose. Many old Russian sins have gone over into Eurasianism in an exaggerated form. The Eurasianists feel a world crisis. But they do not understand that the end of new history, where we are presently, is the starting point of a new universalistic epoch, comparable to the Hellenistic epoch. Today, the times of closed national existences are coming to an end. All national organisms are being thrown into the world rotation and into the wide world. A mutual penetration of the cultural types of the East and the West is taking place. The autarchy of the West is ceasing, as the autarchy of the East is ceasing."52 This assessment of the 1920s is all the more pressing todayin the epoch of developed communications and open borders.

Modem-day Eurasianism represents a conflict-generating ideology, since it does not advance common values for various different peoples and countries, yet advocates restoration of the state within the old borders. Thus nothing remains to place its trust in other than brute force. In actuality, Eurasianists fret about the already-started process of the rebirth of the non-Russian peoples and their contacts with other peoples. For example, D. V. Dragunskii rather candidly writes: "The ethnopolitical problems associated with the Orenburg Corridor are the status of the Russian and the Turkic peoples in northern Kazakhstan, Bashkortostan, and Tatarstan; the distribution of ethnosocial niches; the potential zones of ethnic rivalry; migration, including the question of the trend toward the 'repatriation' of Bashkirs and Tatars to their republics; and the ethnodemographic composition of Orenburg Oblast."53 The author is not concerned about the unification of Slavic and Turkic peoples; he fears Turkic ascendancy and expansion beyond their previously confined boundaries within previous empires. For the insulation of the non-Russian peoples from the wide world, he proposes: "Not to allow any merger [sliianie] of Kazakhstan with the Volga Turkic republics, which could lead to the cutting off of Rossiia from the East."54 In the author's strange logic, cutting off the Tatars from the East will better promote the contacts of Rossiia with the East. In any case, these words contain much more truth than talk of common destiny. And these, unfortunately, are not merely theoretical arguments. Forces exist that insist on implementing comparable ideas. The well-known politician Z. Brzezinski, in the article "A Premature Partnership," considers that "today's goals of Russian policy are, if not openly imperialistic, then at the very least protoimperialistic. This policy may not yet be obviously aimed at an official imperial restoration, but it does little to hold back the strong imperialistic impulse that continues to move large segments of the state bureaucracy, especially military, as well as the public."55 The trend toward the restoration of the former power of the state of Rossiia is very strong. Phraseology to that effect is present even among democratically inclined politicians, and it, as the Chechen events have shown, is far from harmless. These forces are in need of an ideological cloak, which Eurasianism easily provides.

In such a manner, in Eurasianism we have not a new conception of the historical reconciliation of peoples, but a very old policy of empire restoration, covering the base territory of the Genghisid state.

The Islamic challenge?

The historical dispute between two civilizations in Rossiia is reanimated in connection with the democratization of society. Not only Orthodoxy is becoming an important factor in politics and in the life of society, but Islam as well is beginning to influence the overall situation in the country.

An Islamic renaissance frightens many in Rossiia. Articles have appeared in the press about the "Islamic challenge," Pan-Turkism, Pan-Islamism, and an "Islamic arc" that apparently seems to extend from Bosnia through Asia and nearly all the way to Tatarstan itself. The strengthening of Islam in the world, including in such a country as Turkey, is being presented as a direct threat to the interests of Rossiia. The same notes were being sounded at the beginning of the twentieth century, when democratic freedoms had led to an increase in the influence of the Tatars and other Muslim peoples in the life of Rossiia "Pan-Turkism" was invented to oppose this process. Today, attempts are being made to get the old invention of the tsarist officials up and running once again.

Of course, in the next few years, we ought to expect an intensification of the Muslim and Turkic factors. In the assessment of experts, approximately 20 million Muslims live in Rossiia. "In three decades," considers Iu. Kobishchanov, "we ought to expect an increase in the Muslim population of Rossiia up to 30-40 million."56 In many regions of Rossiia over the next few years, the Muslim and Orthodox populations will gradually become equal in size, and'moreover in regions where they have resided historically since time immemorial and are the indigenous peoples. It will be impossible to build relations with them as with inorodtsy.

A serious mistake is being made in the literature when generalized figures are given for the ratio of Russians (82 percent) to other ethnoses in the structure of the Rossiia population without an analysis of their territorial distribution. It is impossible to imagine the real weight of non-Russian peoples in society without considering their proportion in areas of dense habitation. In such a huge country as Rossiia, with an extraordinary diversity of geographic landscape, the significant proportion of non-Russian ethnoses on individual territories becomes a substantive political factor.

It would be ridiculous to engage in the refutation of the idea of the "Islamic arc," Pan-Turkism, and Pan-Islamism. Today, Pan-Islamism is not working even in the Arab countries, where Islamic traditions are strong and a community of language and culture exists. And so it is all the more difficult to imagine the unification of the Turkic and other peoples on the basis of Islam. After all, Pan-Islamism assumes a rejection of ethnicity, thoroughly unacceptable for many peoples. Even very similar ethnoses (for example, Tatars and Bashkirs)'do not merge on the basis of Islam.

For the Tatars, religion was never a reason to reject their self-identification; more likely the oppositeit became a factor in the preservation of ethnic communities. The mosque was the main point of Tatar spirituality, and the medresseh until the beginning of the twentieth century was the sole officially permitted educational establishment. On the basis of the interaction of Islam and Tatar ethnic traditions, a unique form of Islam aroseJadidism, in many ways distinguishing the Tatars from other Turkic peoples.

Nor it is difficult to prove the groundlessness of the talk of patriotism. A certain unity of the Turkic peoples does exist, and this is completely natural. There is no doubt that the interaction between them has increased in recent years, inasmuch as those artificial obstacles that had existed during the Soviet regime have disappeared. But this does not imply any serious political consequences, and, even more, any merging of the Turkic peoples and cultures. The diversity of the Turkic cultures, not their unification, is a blessing.

Islam is not in Rossiia by accident. It "had set down roots on the Volga sixty-six years before the Russians converted to Orthodoxy. One can try to ignore the existence of the Muslims, one can try to imagine Rossiia as a purely Orthodox state, but this will not diminish the role of the Tatars. The dispute of two religions, of two civilizations, continues to this day. It will no doubt acquire new forms. One would hope that the Chechen war would be the last armed conflict in the historical chain of interconfessional frictions, and that in the future, all disputes will bear an exclusively peaceful character.

Islam adapts to new currents. N. Trubetskoi writes that "a faith that has found itself in a Turkic environment inevitably congeals and crystallizes." In his footsteps, N. Berdiaev speaks of the "staticity of Islam." This may be attributed to the medieval period, but is completely untrue with respect to present-day "Tatar" Islam. In the nineteenth century, the reformation of Islam became a form of Tatar ethnos survival in new conditions. Jadidism gave a dynamism to all social processes among the Tatars. Its advantage lies in the point that it encourages individualism, has a creative premise, and welcomes all sorts of social activities as pleasing to God; it is a stimulus for a transition to the market economy. Reform Islam does not stand in the way of present-day European norms and values. On the contrary, it permits traditional Tatar and Islamic values to be organically united with the ideas of liberalism and democracy. The Tatar variant of Islam is very pragmatic; at the same time, it cannot be called superficial.

Will Orthodoxy, remaining unreformed, be able to compete with the latest European currents in ideology? This is the historical challenge to Orthodox civilization.

The pragmatism of Tatar" Islam brings it closer to the European mentality. The general opinion is that the Tatars are an Eastern people. Religion, trade routes, and cultural ties all bring the Tatars closer to the East. But the last century has brought many changes to their way of life. The system of education, the developed economy, and norms of behavior make the Tatars much closer to Europe than to the East. And only markets for the sale of their goods tie them to Central and Southeast Asia.

The need for investments, modern technologies, and scientific research compel Tatarstan to cooperate actively specifically with Europe. Having aviation, automotive, machine-building, electronics, and other high-tech industries, it is impossible to remain in the East [Rossiia], where these sectors of production do not exist." Life pushes Tatarstani society into the arms of Europe, but Europe itself is not rushing to meet it.

The composition of the European Union does not include Orthodox and Muslim countries, which cannot be considered an accidental fact (although NATO does include Orthodox Greece and Muslim Turkey in its composition). Serving as a cultural basis for European unification are Catholicism and Protestantism, and no matter how much the political leaders try to step beyond the borders of this areal in their speeches and intents, this has so far not been possible to achieve in practice. The unification of Europe, including Rossiia, within the framework of the Council of Europe seems to create a new situation. Nevertheless, real integration is not taking place as yet due to opposition to this process both in Europe and in Rossiia itself.

The European Union will stop at the borders of Islam. At the same time, Islam is decisively intruding into the life of Europe. Moreover, [intrusion is] not only through external contacts, but also through internal demographic processes, for example in France and in Germany. Europe will one day have to decide on an historical step and extend a hand to the Islamic world, as has already once occurred with the Bosnian Muslim case.


The Tatars, finding themselves with the Empire of Rossiia, dropped out of history for several centuries. Furthermore, they had had an unfortunate legend imposed on them about some wild enslavers who had supposedly migrated from elsewhere to encroach on Russian lands. All of historical science served one simple taskto exclude, to forget the Tatar period, to sully the Golden Horde, to denigrate the Tatars. This was in part successful. Not only Russians but Tatars as well have a poor knowledge of their past. Many Tatars, under the influence of propaganda, try to reject the most splendid, truly golden period in their history and to reduce their roots only to the Volga Bulgars. A frustrated self-awareness impedes them from openly saying the truth about their own history.

The Tatars have very ancient roots. Among their ancestors were the Huns, the Kipchaks, the Nogais, and, of course, the Bulgars. Tatar history until the tenth century is difficult to localize territorially, for Turkic peoples lived on the broad expanses from the borders of China to the Don and were nomads on this territory, like ships on the ocean.0 It would be unscientific to associate this history with only today's territory of Tatarstan and all the more erroneous to connect it to opposition to the Russians.

The Russian historical tradition rests on the struggle with the Tatars, which is a purely ideological approach to the history of the state. In actuality, for the Golden Horde, the "Russian Ulus" was only one of the provinces, and far from the most important one at that, either territorially or politically. The strategic interests of the the Tatars were concentrated on other directions.

The Russian principalities in those times had no serious influence on world processes, being engaged primarily in internecine feuds. One could, of course, with artistic images, try to imagine Aleksandr Nevskii or Dmitrii Donskoi as historical personalities, but their role did not extend beyond the framework of the local history of individual principalities or of the "Russian Ulus." But the Tatars were interested in far more grandiose tasks than the conquering of Russian lands. They created a huge empire on a Turkic foundation, built 150 cities and a communications system, introduced a universal census, and created highly developed legislation. They found themselves at the gates of Europe and were knocking at them. The northern Russian territories were far from key in this grandiose redrawing of the world's borders. If one were to dig deeply enough into the soil today and take a look at what modem Rossiia is standing on, at the foundation of the largest Russian citiesand especially the Volga onesone will find Golden Horde foundations.

The politics of the Golden Horde was part of world history, while the history of the fragmented Russian principalities was a part of Tatar [history]. This may be hard to admit, but it is so. And there is nothing to be ashamed of in this, nor, indeed, is there in the point that Tatar history of the past four centuries ended up being a part of the history of Rossiia. Russians, thanks to the Golden Horde, ended up involved in world processes, and in consequence were able to create a grandiose state under the name of Rossiia.

Time will pass, the ideological layer will be cast off, and many peoples will be laying claim to the Golden Horde legacy. Despite the huge territory and multinational nature of the Ulus of Dzhu-chiev, the Tatars remain the principal inheritor of its traditions. Of course, the Tatar khans were Genghisids, but they spoke Turkic and fully assimilated the Turkic culture. Batu-Khan was without doubt first and foremost a Tatar khan, and not a Mongol one. His life, like the biographies of the remaining khans of the Golden Horde, is an inalienable part of the history of Tatarstan. The graves of the last Genghisids lie to this day in the Kazan' Kremlin. The Bulgars, as one of the most active components of the great state, were able to impose their religion on the Golden Hordethe most organic part of modem Tatar culture.

Magnificent was the period of the Bulgar khanate, when society moved from the Hunnic cult of the sword to other valuestrade, crafts, education, Islam. The Bulgars built large cities and created a written literature and a science. Nevertheless, this was local history, as, indeed, was the period of the Kazan' khanate. Only the epoch of the Golden Horde influenced world processes and European events, and for this reason it was the most brilliant period in Tatar history.

* * *

The history of Rossiia and Tatarstan is tightly intertwined. Good fortune smiled first on the one, then on the other. In the beginning of the twentieth century, the Tatars gained an opportunity for the rebirth of their culture, and for the Russians, an opportunity to go along the path of democratization. In the 1930s, all of this came to an end with the return to an empire that undermined the culture of both the Russian and the Tatar peoples.

Today, Tatarstan and Rossiia are once again faced with choice. The millennium now concluding was an epoch of the rise and fall of great empires. The last of them, the Empire of Rossiia, has fallen apart (the USSR) and begun to reform (the Federation of Rossiia). Tatarstan offers its own model of social development, opposing still-strong imperialistic tendencies in Russian society. Rossiia is attempting to preserve centralized administration and to combine it with certain elements of democracy. Is it difficult to say how the historical dispute will end this time? The chances are not equal, but each nevertheless has its chance.

Editor's notes

a. The Tatar author uses the term Rossiia throughout his text to denote the multiethnic, multinational nature of historical Russia and the current Russian Federation. Unfortunately, the use of Russia in English connotes the territory of the Russians, with little signaling or awareness of the presence of non-Russians. I therefore have chosen to use "Rossiia" here, to stress that the conceptual foundation of the word "Rossiia" is multinational, as are "rossiany," its inhabitants, in their identities.
b. The complex, multipart bilateral treaty was signed in 1994. See "Tatarstan's Treaty with Russia, February 1994" and "Twelve Agreements Between Tatarstan and the Russian Federation," Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, 1994, vol. 18, no. 1. For background, see Roza N. Musina, "The Problems of Sovereignty and Interethnic Relations in the Republic of Tatarstan," Culture Incarnate: Native Anthropology from Russia (Armonk, NY: M E Sharpe 1995) pp. 113-22.
c. The dangerous idea being refuted here, to redistrict and standardize the federation into guberniias, or governorships, has been argued by a range of politicians from Sergei Shakhrai to Vladimir Zhirinovsky. See "Federalism: Views from Moscow," Anthropology and Archeology of Eurasia, vol. 36, no. 1 (Summer 1997).
d. Kiev and especially western Ukraine had been on the "other side of the border" at other times as well. For historical reviews and perspective, see Orest Subtelny, Ukraine: A History (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1994, 2nd ed.); and Roman Szporluk, ed.. National Identity and Ethnicity in Russia and the New States of Eurasia (Armonk, NY: M. E. Sharpe, 1994).
e. Current Western historians usually avoid the term "Tatar yoke," unless it is in quotes. The panel "Rus' Mongol Interactions" focused on such revisionist history at the 1996 American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. It was chaired by Donald Ostrowski, with participants Lawrence Nathan Langer, Uli Schamiloglu, Janet Martin, and David Goldfrank.
f. The author is quoting an article in Russian by Edward N. Keenan of Harvard's department of history, creating risks of back translation. The original was "Muscovy and Kazan': Some Introductory Remarks on the Patterns of Steppe Diplomacy," Slavic Review, vol. 25, no. 4 (December 1967), pp. 548-58.
g. Khakim is referring to the sophisticated Jadidism (New Way) of reformist philosopher Ismail Bey Gasprali (Gasprinskii), and he elaborates this point below. Gasprali advocated education for all, including women, as well as a merging of Eastern and Western philosophies within Islam. See I. Gasprinskii, Russkoe musul'manstvo, mysli, zametki i nabliudeniia Musul'manina (Simferopol, 1881). On him, see Edward J. Lazzerini, "Beyond Renewal: The Jadid Response to Pressure for Change in the Modem Age," in Jo-Ann Gross, ed., Muslims in Central Asia (Durham: Duke University Press, 1992), pp. 15166.
h. The author is strangely inaccurate about the first names of some of the Russian liberal politicians he names. He also may have been too quick to dismiss the influence of people such as economist Egor Gaidar, whose institute has played a substantial role in many concrete reforms of the Yeltsin government and whose influence has molded Sergei Kirienko.
i. The proliferation of Russian right-wing groups (including those led by some of the politicians named here) is illustrated by the "Guide to Russian Ultra-Nationalist and Neo-Fascist Organizations," Monitor, vol. 6, no. 6 (29 June 1995). See also Kio est' kogo v Rossii i v blizhnem zarubezh'e (Moscow: Novoe vremia, 1993 and subsequent editions).
j. Reference is to the Belovezh Agreement, between Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus, dissolving the Soviet Union in December 1991. Kazakhstan was invited, but President Nazarbaev refrained. The Commonwealth of Independent States was subsequently formed by the republics of the former Soviet Union, except the three Baltic states. Georgia and Azerbaijan were latecomers.
k. See the previous article in this issue, by Nikolai S. Trubetskoi, for elaboration. At various times in his life and in various writings. Prince Trubetskoi was more or less resigned to European influence. He fled to Europe after the Russian Revolution. For more on Trubetskoi and Eurasianism, see the work of geographer Mark Bassin. See also "Eurasianist Debates: Then and Now," Anthropology and Archeology of Eurasia, vol. 36, no. 4 (Spring 1998).
1. For more on Abu Nasr al-Kursavi, Shihabeddin Merjani, Alimjan Barudi, and Rizaeddin Fahreddin, see Azade-Ayse Rorlich, The Volga Tatars: A Profile in National Resilience (Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 1986).
m. The original article was Samuel Huntington, "The Clash of Civilizations," Foreign Affairs, 1993, vol. 72, no. 3, pp. 22-49. For critiques of his famous thesis, see Foreign Affairs, 1993, vol. 72, no. 4 (articles by Fouad Ajami, Kishore Mahbubani, Robert L. Bartley, Liu Binyan, Jeane J. Kirkpatrick). His defensive defense was in the following issue, 1993, vol. 72, no. 5, pp. 186-94. See also my small contribution to the debate: "Islam Versus Christianity? Shifting Politics and Identities," Anthropology and Archeology of Eurasia, vol. 34, no. 3 (Winter 1995-96).
n. This Orientalist passage reflects the author's focus on the "East" inside the former Soviet Union, and thus does not include the obvious developed Asian countries of Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and others.
o. As Khakim's metaphor indicates, nomadic does not mean wandering aimlessly. The captains and crews of ships on the ocean usually know where they are going and steer purposefully. Nomadic peoples, including the Turkic peoples of the vast Eurasian steppes, practiced a rigorous transhumant pattern of seasonal travel within known ranges and trade routes.


1. Poslanie po nalsional'noi bezopasnosli Prezidenta Rossiiskoi Federatsii Federal'nomu sobraniiu (Moscow, 1996), p. 27.
2. Ibid., p. 3.
3. S. M. Solov'ev, Sochineniia, bk. 1 (Moscow: Mysl', 1988), p. 54.
4. See: Otechestvennaia isloriia. Isloriia Rossii s drevneishikh vremen do 1917 goda. Enlsiklopediia, vol. 1 (Moscow, 1994), p. 543.
5. Solov'ev, Sochineniia, bk. 3 (Moscow: Mysl', 1989), p. 460.
6. Ibid.
7. N. M. Karamzin, Isloriia gosudarslva Rossiiskogo, vols. 5-8 (Kaluga, 1993), p. 488.
8. As an example, we shall present a citation from a book by V. V. Kargalov. In the chapter with the characteristic title "Rus' stanovitsia Rossiei" [Rus' Becomes Rossiia], he writes: "The self-awareness of the Russian people increased, united by the great historical goalto overthrow the hated Horde yoke and to attain national independence." (V. V. Kargalov, Konets ordynskogo iga, 2nd ed. [Moscow: Nauka, 1984], p. 65).
9. What is meant is the statehood of the Tatars on today's territory of Tatarstan. In the given instance, we are digressing from more ancient "Tatar" states or state formations that preceded the appearance of the Bulgar khanate.
10. Solov'ev, Sochineniia, bk. 3, pp. 461-62.
11. See: Solov'ev, Sochineniia, bk. 2 (Moscow: Mysl', 1988), p. 145.
12. Iu. Kobishchanov, "Islamskaia tsivilizatsiia i severnaia Evropa," Nezavisi-maia gazela, 9 April 1996, p. 5.
13. By the way, Uzbek-Khan himself gave his daughter [in marriage] to a Muscovite prince and permitted her to accept Christianity.
14. Cited in: Rizaetdin Fakhreddin. Khany Zololoi Ordy (Kazan', 1996), p. 94.
15. L. N. Gumilev, Drevniaia Rus' i Velikaia step' (Moscow, 1992), pp. 532-33.
16. Ibid., p. 537.
17. [General] A[leksandr] Lebed', in his pre-election campaign material, writes: "The trouble is [that we have ourselves] a robber-state, which levies a 'Mongol tribute' on the economy." (See: A. Lebed', "Pravda i poriadok," Respublika Talarslan, 11 June 1996). Will Rossiia ever find a president who will be able to reduce taxes to the level of the TatarMongol tribute?! In general, politicians often seem to turn to comparisons with the "Tatar yoke," the Tatarshchina, and so forth to improve their style or to provide some more intense color in the absence of arguments.
18. The Kama Bulgarsforebears of today's Kazan' Tatarswere, in Gumilev's words, the least reliable subjects of the Horde. See: L. N. Gumilev, Ritmy Evrazii (Moscow, 1993), p. 48.
19. For example, Batu was a pagan, while his son Sartak was Orthodox, and Berke was a Muslim.
20. V.O. Kliuchevskii, Sochineniia, vol. 2 (Moscow, 1957), p. 43.
21. Edvard Kinan [Edward Keenan], "Kazan' i Moskoviia: model' stepnoi diplomatii" Panorama-forum, 1995, no. 1, p. 75.
22. N. S. Trubetskoi, "O turanskom elemente v russkoi kul'ture," Panorama-forum, 1997, no. 1, p. 36 [and this issue of Anthropology and Archeology of Eurasia, pp. 829; the original Russian page citation cannot be correct as Trubetskoi's article ends on p. 25.Ed.].
23. Derzhavin, Karamzin, Aksakov, Turgenev, Chaadaev, Ogarev, and many others descended from Tatar clans that had gone over into the service of Rossiia. See: N. A. Baskakov, Russkie familii tiurkskogo proiskhozhdeniia (Moscow: Nauka, 1979); A. Kh. Khalikov, 500 russkikh familii bulgaro-tatarskogo proiskhozhdeniia (Kazan, 1992).
24. R. G. Skrynnikov, Boris Godunov (Moscow: Nauka, 1983), p. 122.
25. Jaroslaw Pelenski, State and Society in Muscovite Rossiia and the MongolTurkic System in the Sixteenth Century ([New York]: Brooklyn College CUNY, 1978), p. 108.
26. "An organic part of the establishment of the actual Muscovite tsardom was the resolution of the 'Kazan' question,' that is, the destruction in the east of the last dangerous antagonist capable of threatening the vital centers of the country, and the breakthrough of the Russians into the seeming boundlessness of the eastern difficult expanses: the steppes, the taiga, the tundra, the oceans," writes V. Tsymburskii. See: Inoe. Rossiia kak~sub"ekt (Moscow, 1995), p. 212.
27. M. Khudiakov, Ocherki po istorii Kazanskogo khanstva (Kazan', r923), p. 235.
28. V. O. Kliuchevskii, Soch[ineniia] v deviati tomakh, vol. 4 (Moscow, 1989), p. 202.
29. A. B. Zubov and V. A. Kolosov, "Chto ishchet Rossiia? Tsennostnye orientatsii rossiiskikh izbiratelei 12 dekabria 1993 goda," Polls, 1994, no. 1, p. 104.
30. Ibid., p. 107.
31. A. Sevast'ianov, Nalsional-kapitalizm (Moscow, 1995), p. 12.
32. Ibid., p. 30.
33. Ibid., p. 31.
34. "The problem of the preservation of the state and territorial integrity of the RF," writes Ramazan Abdulatipov, "is key for the present-day stage of development of the state of Rossiia, especially after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the possible transfer of this variant onto the Federation of Rossiia." (R. Abdulatipov, "Tol'ko zakon mozhet ostanovit' bezzakonie," Nezavisimaia gazeta, 16 July 1996, p. 5).
35. In his program declaration, Aleksandr Lebed' writes: "Rossiia will make do without Chechnya, if Chechnya thinks that it can make do without Rossiia." (Izvestiia, 31 May 1996).
36. V. V. Il'in, "Russkii narod: problema sokhraneniia i ukrepleniia rossiiskoi gosudarstvennosti," in Russkii vopros: problemy nalsional'noi i mezhdunarodnoi bezopasnosti. Iz materialov nauchno-prakticheskoi konferentsii (Moscow, 1995), p. 4.
37. N. N. Moiseev, "Russkii vopros: problemy stanovleniia novogo ob-shchestva i novoi gosudarstvennosti. Rol' russkoi natsional'noi znati," in Russkii vopros, p. 35.
38. Evraziiskaia khronika, issue 7 (Paris, 1927).
39. N. S. Trubetskoi, "Russkaia problema," Evraziiskaia khronika, issue 2 (Prague, 1925), pp. 313-14.
40. Il'in, "Russkii narod," p. 7.
41. Moiseev, "Russkii vopros," p. 36.
42. Aktual'nye problemy natsional'noi politiki i federalizma v Rossii. Iz materialov nauchno-praklicheskoi konferenlsii (Moscow, 1995), p. 4.
43. I. Isaev, "Evraziistvo: ideologiia gosudarstvennosti." ONS [Obshchesi-vennye nauki i sovremennost'], 1994, no. 5, p. 45.
44. Evraziistvo. Opyt sistematicheskogo izlozheniia (Paris, 1926), p. 357.
45. Akiual'nye problemy natsional'noi politiki i federalizma, p. 10.
46. A. S. Panarin, "Natsional'naia i mezhdunarodnaia bezopasnost' v kontekste sud'by russkogo naroda." in Russkii vopros: problemy natsional'noi i mezhdunarodnoi bezopasnosti, p. 50.
47. I. Vasilenko, "Dve glavy rossiiiskogo oria," Rossiiskaia federatsiia, no. 7. 1996,p.33.
48. Aktual'nye problemy natsional'noi politiki, p. 10.
49. For example, Vasilenko writes the following: "Just the mere fact that for centuries, the Slavs and the Turkic-speaking peoples have jointly experienced severe periods in their history creates between them thousands of the most subtle historical, cultural, and psychological ties, forcing one clearly and realistically to feel the community of one's destiny." (Vasilenko, "Dve glavy rossiiskogo oria," p. 33.
50. S. Khantington [Huntington], "Stolknovenie tsivilizatsii?" Polls, 1994, no. 1,p.33.
51. Iu. Kobishchanov, "Islamskaia tsivilizatsiia i sevemaia Evraziia," Nezavi-simaia gazeta, 9 April 1966, p. 5.
52. N. Berdiaev, "Evraziitsy," Panorama-forum, 1997, no. 1, p. 28.
53. D. V. Dragunskii, "Etnopoliticheskie protsessy na postsovetskom pro-stranstve i rekonstruktsiia Severnoi Evrazii," Polls, 1995, no. 3, p. 46.
54. Ibid.
55. Z[bigniew] Bzhezinskii [Brzezinski], "Prezhdevremennoe partnerstvo," Polis, 1994, no. 1.
56. Kobishchanov, "Islamskaia tsivilizatsiia i sevemaia Evropa," p. 5.

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