Bulletin 2:33 (2008)
- THE RUSSIAN NATIONALISM BULLETIN
A Biweekly Newsletter of Current Affairs
Vol. 2, No. 33(38), 2008, 17 November 2008
Compilers: Scott Littlefield & Andreas Umland
I NEWS: 31 October - 14 November 2008
II SURVEYS, ANALYSES, COMMENTS
III PRIMARY SOURCES
IV ANNOTATIONS OF PUBLICATIONS
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I NEWS: 31 October - 14 November 2008
TV highlights Crimea rallies in support of Russian broadcasters
Excerpt from report by Gazprom-owned Russian NTV, October 31, 2008,
(Presenter) Thousands of people took to the streets in Crimea today.
These are not activists of political movements. These are ordinary TV
viewers. They had to put down their remote controls and turn off their
televisions because of a decision of the Ukrainian government. Under a
government resolution, Russian TV broadcasting on Ukrainian territory
will stop on 1 November, that is tomorrow.
(Correspodent) Crimean public organizations are holding protests one
after another, opposing the decision of the Ukrainian National Council
for TV and Radio Broadcasting to switch off Russian TV broadcasting in
the peninsula. The Crimean authorities have not so far officially
reacted to the decision of Kiev officials. Those taking part in the
protests in front of offices of the Ukrainian national council are
demanding that the state officials' decree be cancelled immediately.
The Crimean protesters are urging the autonomous republic's
authorities to follow the example of some towns in southeastern
Ukraine, which have already refused to carry out the decree that
Russian TV channels should be removed from cable networks.
Televisions with yellow and blue screens are being destroyed in front
of the national council's office as a sign of protest. Demand for
satellite TV packages including Russian television has increased
dramatically in Simferopol. Providers say that previously people spent
a long time trying to decide which satellite package was the largest.
Their only question now is whether or not it would possible to watch
Russian TV. (passage omitted)
Not relying on support of the Crimean central authorities, heads of
district authorities have started taking their own measures. Some have
decided to leave Russian channels on despite the decree. The Feodosiya
city council has already lodged a complaint with the Parliamentary
Assembly of the Council of Europe.
(Interfax news agency, Moscow, in Russian 0758 gmt 31 Oct 08 quoted
Moscow city mayor Yuriy Luzhkov as saying that the Ukrainian
authorities were pursuing an anti-Russia policy. Speaking at an
international conference of compatriots in Moscow, Luzhkov said that
the Russian authorities should take political and economic measures
"With the arrival of (President Viktor) Yushchenko in Kiev, whom we
can now describe, with every certainty, as a clearly anti-Russia
person, a wave of Russophobia has literally engulfed Ukraine, where
some 80 per cent command the Russian language and up to a half of the
population considers it to be their native tongue," Luzhkov said.)
Ukraine Terminates Telecasting Of Russia's Leading Channels Nov 1
Itar-Tass, November 1, 2008
KIEV, November 1 (Itar-Tass) -- Ukraine on November 1 terminates the
telecasting of all of Russia's four leading television channels, the
spokeswoman for the country's main provider of telecommunication
services Volya (Freedom), Alina Sigda, told Itar-Tass on Friday.
On the 'black list' of channels "not adapted to Ukrainian television
broadcasting" (that is the official excuse for the termination ordered
by the National Council for Television and Radio Broadcasting) are
Russia's Channel One, RTR-Planeta, RenTV and TVC-International.
The National Council's representative Tamara Kravchenko said the
decision to terminate the airing of Russian television channels was
made because the four channels in question were allegedly not adapted
to Ukrainian legislation. In the meantime, the National Council has
offered no definitions of the term "adaptation."
The chairman of the parliamentary committee for national security and
defense, Anatoly Gritsenko, came out against the measure making
Ukrainian media space more closed to the outside world.
"The world is becoming more and more open. The people are capable of
having their own idea of what is going on in their country and in the
world," the legislator representing the pro-presidential bloc Our
Ukraine-People's Self-Defense said.
In his opinion "there is a more effective way - that of opening the
media space in order to let one and all hear very different points of
view and then formulate one's own position with greater precision."
"The tactic of bans will yield nothing. The forbidden fruit always
tastes sweet. With the knowledge of foreign languages and a chance to
listen to foreign mass media it is always possible to piece together a
more impartial picture of events," said Gritsenko, the defense
minister in Ukraine's previous Cabinet of Ministers.
Thousands attend Kremlin-backed group's anti-US protest in Moscow
Excerpt from report by state-owned Russian news channel Vesti TV,
November 2, 2008, BBC Monitoring
(Presenter) A protest is currently being staged outside the American
embassy in Moscow. Representatives of the Nashi youth movement have
gathered to protest against US policies towards other countries. Young
people brought with them pumpkins, the symbol of Halloween, and wrote
on them the names of people killed because of conflicts unleashed by
Dmitriy Pisarenko reports from the scene.
(Correspondent) (Passage omitted) Thousands of people are still
converging on this area near the US embassy. The organizers say that
about 15,000 protesters have already gathered here. (Passage omitted)
Protesters are holding pumpkins with candles, the symbol of Halloween.
American flags are planted in pumpkins with the names of people who
died as a result of aggressive action by the USA in various parts of
(Protester, no caption) This pumpkin has two meanings. On the one
hand, it is the symbol of Halloween, an American holiday. On the other
hand, it carries the name of a person who was killed.
(Second protester, no caption) I personally disagree with what the
Americans are doing in the world. I do not think it is right to kill
thousands of people in pursuit of your ideology and interests.
(Correspondent) Protesters are saying that Halloween is akin to
fiddling while Rome burns because a show like this is staged in
America on the eve of All Saints Day when people remember the dead
and, according to legend, the souls of the dead return to the world.
There are (projector) lights on the facade of the house, but this is
not an entertainment show. Speakers at the rally give accounts of
incidents involving the deaths of people as a result of aggressive
action by the American administration and American troops.
Many people have arrived from various regions, such as Bryansk,
Belgorod, Smolensk and Astrakhan. There are also people from Ossetia.
(Protester, no caption) For the sake of what did my friends, near and
dear ones and acquaintances have to die? For the sake of a certain
Saakashvili reasserting himself in front of his American masters. We
do not want a repetition of Iraq, Yugoslavia, Korea and Ossetia, which
is my personal pain. I came here to protest against the genocide of
(Correspondent) The protest started at 1900 (1600 gmt) and will last
for one and a half hours, until 2030. After that the protesters will
leave and traffic will gradually return to normal. The stage will be
completely dismantled by about 4 a.m. on 3 November.
(According to Interfax news agency, in Russian 1734 gmt 2 Nov 08,
Moscow's law-enforcement authorities estimate that about 15,000 people
are taking part in the protest, while Nashi puts the number of
protesters at over 20,000. The report said that the head of the
Federal Agency for Youth Affairs and former Nashi leader, Vasiliy
Yakemenko, was among the protesters.
According to an earlier Interfax report (1634 gmt 2 Nov 08), a
section of the Moscow inner ring road was closed because of the
protest. On the road in front of the US embassy, seven of the nine
lanes would remain closed to traffic until 4 a.m., Interfax added.)
Neo-Nazi Bombers Sentenced for "Hooliganism"
FSU Monitor, November 3, 2008
Three neo-Nazis who planted a shrapnel-filled bomb in an night club
hosting an anti-fascist rock concert were sentenced to short prison
terms for "hooliganism." The defendants received sentences ranging
from two and a half to four years for planting a bomb at the "Roks
Club" in St. Petersburg on October 13, 2007. A security guard noticed
smoke coming from a bag the defendants had placed on the stage and
took it outside, where police defused it. Rather than convicting them
of extremism or a hate crime, the court found that the defendants, who
are members of the "Slavic Union" and were found to be in possession
of neo-Nazi paraphernalia, set the bomb because of "personal dislike"
for people inside the club. Initial charges of terrorism were for some
reason dropped, leading to accusations by anti-fascists that the
father of one of the defendants, a police officer, was influencing the
Kremlin's Youth Group Holds Racist Demonstration in Moscow
FSU Monitor, November 3, 2008
The youth wing of the Kremlin's party United Russia held a racist
demonstration in Moscow, according to an October 31, 2008 article in
the independent newspaper "Novaya Gazeta." The Young Guards, who
recently issued a statement that demonized migrants for the first
time, gathered outside of the Federal Migration Service demanding "Our
money for our people!" Using the world financial crisis as an excuse
to dabble in far-right politics and thus mainstream the rhetoric of
neo-Nazis and groups like the Movement Against Illegal Immigration,
the Young Guards demanded the abolition of programs that allow labor
migrants to enter the country, in the name of Russia's "national
interests." The Young Guards indicated their readiness to participate
in vigilante actions targeting migrants, offering to patrol
construction sites and identify illegal migrants working there.
Members of the far-right Movement Against Illegal Immigration also
rallied outside the Federal Migration Service's headquarters, but kept
their distance from the Young Guards.
Clashes as Russia marks unity day
BBC News, November 4, 2008
Clashes have broken out across Russia on National Unity Day, after
ultra-nationalists defied official bans on holding marches.
In Moscow, police arrested at least 200 people, some of whom gave a
Nazi salute as they tried to rally in the capital.
Arrests were also made in St Petersburg and several major cities in
Siberia and the Far East, Russian media report.
On Monday, seven people were hurt when local youths fought migrants
from the Caucasus near Moscow, police said.
Seventeen people were also held in the town of Solnechnogorsk and
police confiscated stun guns, knives and bats, Russia's Interfax news
Thousands of people across Russia on Tuesday took part in peaceful
demonstrations that were permitted by the authorities.
At least 8,000 people - mostly pro-Kremlin activists - held a rally in
Moscow, officials said.
"I'm here because this is the only festival in which you can declare
your Russianness. It's necessary to do this so as not to lose one's
identity," Alexei Ogloblin told the AFP news agency.
Demonstrators in the capital are also planning to make a huge "peace
blanket" from materials brought to the capital by representatives of
nearly 20 Russian regions.
The Kremlin introduced the National Unity Day in 2005 to replace the
holiday marking the anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917.
It commemorates Moscow's expulsion of Polish invaders in 1612.
But human rights groups have criticised the new holiday, saying it
acts as a catalyst for the many racist organisations active in Russia.
The Moscow Human Rights Bureau has said that more than 100 people -
mainly workers from the Central Asian states of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan
and Tajikistan - have died as a result of racist attacks in Russia
Despite Russia's much improved economy and better living standards,
xenophobic sentiments remain deeply rooted, the BBC's Russian affairs
analyst Steven Eke says.
They are often reflected in openly expressed contempt for dark-skinned
people, our correspondent says.
Russia's president honors liberators on Unity Day
RIA Novosti, November 4, 2008
MOSCOW, November 4 (RIA Novosti) - President Dmitry Medvedev attended
celebrations of Russia's Unity Day in the Kremlin on Tuesday, and gave
a speech hailing the 1612 liberation of Moscow as a key event in the
Russia has marked Unity Day each November 4 since 2005, following a
2004 law signed by then-president Vladimir Putin. The holiday
commemorates the expulsion of Polish-Lithuanian occupiers from Moscow.
"The volunteer corps was led by Dmitry Pozharsky and Kuzma Minin -
these were true patriots, and their manliness, ability to rally the
people, and loyalty to the fatherland defined the destiny of our
country as an independent, self-reliant, and strong state," Medvedev
told guests at the Kremlin, including leaders of non-governmental and
cultural organizations, scientists, and prominent Russians living abroad.
The president said Unity Day has added significance amid difficult
times for the country.
"This year was not an easy one for Russia. In a time of trials -
military, political, and economic - we felt your support, your true
love for Russia, for the people who live and work here."
The ruling United Russia Party has organized various public
celebrations to be held throughout the country, marking Unity Day.
Unity Day effectively replaces celebrations of the Bolshevik
Revolution, which had been held on November 7. Celebrations were moved
forward by three days to avoid associations with the revolution.
Russia Needs Unity To Attain Strategic Goals - State Duma Deputies
Itar-Tass, November 4, 2008
MOSCOW, November 4 (Itar-Tass) -- The unity, which symbolizes the
November 4 holiday in Russia, is absolutely necessary for the
attainment of strategic goals, State Duma deputies told the media on
"Almost four centuries ago our ancestors realized that unity was
force. It is of paramount importance to be united and strong at
present, when Russia conducts sustainable development of the economy
and the civil society," State Duma Vice-Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin
said. "We can make this country prosperous only through common effort."
"The world financial crisis presents a real problem," first deputy
head of the United Russia parliament group Vladimir Pekhtin said. "We
will explain to our people what to do and how to resolve the situation
created by overseas states, whose faulty financial policy has caused a
global meltdown," he said. "This holiday is full of patriotism and
pride for the homeland. This is the symbol of unity of the Russian
"Traditions of this holiday will form step by step," State Duma
deputy and Olympic champion Irina Rodnina said. "I belong to the
generation, which marked a different holiday for many years, but
Russia has new holidays now. These new holidays have historical roots.
We must cultivate new traditions, and we will do that together," she said.
"Traditions are not developed within a year or two. Each holiday
needs a program, an ideology clear to people. So far, many Russians
view November 4 as a mere day off, and there is nothing bad about this.
Traditions will develop alongside changes in our country and
transformations of economic and political views," Rodnina said.
"Unity is the legacy of our ancestors. People of various nationality,
social status and religion united in joy and sorrow for the sake of
life and homeland future," Deputy Chairwoman of the State Duma Budget
and Tax Committee Galina Karelova said. "We will be much stronger if
this understanding is nested in our hearts and passed from one
generation to another."
"So far, feelings about this holiday differ," Deputy Chairwoman of
the State Duma Federation Affairs and Regional Policy Committee Irina
Yarovaya said. "Yet unity symbolized by the November 4 holiday is
absolutely necessary for the attainment of strategic goals of Russia."
Over Half Of Russians Won't Celebrate Former Revolution Day On Nov 7
Itar-Tass, November 4, 2008
MOSCOW, November 4 (Itar-Tass) -- Fifty-seven percent of Russians do
not plan to mark the former Revolution Day on November 7, the Russian
Public Opinion Study Center (VTsIOM) said.
Twelve percent said they would celebrate the holiday at home, and
another seven percent would mark the occasion at their friends' or
relatives'. One percent said they would go to a restaurant, and
another one percent would mark the holiday in the countryside.
Fourteen percent did not choose the place for celebrations, and six
percent found it difficult to answer the question.
Thirty-eight percent of Russians still call November 7 the Day of the
Great October Socialist Revolution. Thirty-one percent call this day
'an old holiday celebrated for many years' and say they will continue
to mark it.
Eleven percent called November 7 the Day of Accord and
Reconciliation, and seven percent said it was "a tragic page in the
history of the country."
The center polled 1,600 adults in 140 towns and cities of 42 Russian
regions in late October. The error is within 3.4%.
Russian police detain over 100 neo-Nazi demonstrators
DPA, November 4, 2008
Moscow - Russian police arrested over 100 neo-Nazi demonstrators at an
unsanctioned march Tuesday in Moscow, the Interfax agency reported.
The participants in a so-called Russian March were taken away by
members of the special forces OMON unit, the agency reported, citing
Moscow city authorities had not sanctioned the demonstration, coming
on Russia's National Unity Day.
Meanwhile some 400 nationalists gathered in an officially-approved
rally across the street from the seat of the Russian government.
Reports in Moscow said extreme rightists had gathered in other cities
around the country to chant slogans like "Russia for the Russians." (dpa)
Minority Community Group Accuses Far-Right Group of Inciting Murder
FSU Monitor, November 4, 2008
The Congress of Peoples of the Caucasus has demanded criminal charges
against Russia's leading far-right group, the Movement Against Illegal
Immigration (DPNI), according to an October 30, 2008 report posted on
the Sobkor.ru web site. The Congress's press secretary, Khadis Aliev,
told Sobkor that DPNI leaflets now call for the murder of non-Russian
migrants. The DPNI's leader, Aleksandr Belov, denies that the his
organization distributed the leaflets, terming it a "provocation."
Neo-Fascists March in Russia
FSU Monitor, November 4, 2008
The annual "Russian March" took place today in several cities today,
an event that in past years has featured antisemitic and racist
slogans and violent attacks on minorities. According to a series of
reports posted on the web site Jewish.ru, the marchers this year were
somewhat less extreme in their actions. In Vladivostok, local
officials warned in advance that they would not allow neo-Nazis to
march, so the marchers were generally calm and wore masks to hide
their identities. In Novosibirsk, a group of anti-fascists protested
the march with signs reading "Fascism shall not pass!" They blocked
the marchers, and scuffles broke out, but police intervened before
anybody got hurt. The Novosibirsk marchers were more blatantly racist
than those in Vladivostok, screaming far-right slogans like "Russia
for Russians!" and "A Russian Order for Russia!" In Chita, local
authorities allowed the march to take place, but banned the use of
In Moscow, where officials banned the march for the first time, police
detained 500 people, including the leaders of the Movement Against
Illegal Immigration (DPNI) and the Slavic Union (SS). In contrast, St.
Petersburg officials permitted the march, which took place without
incident, despite the participation of 150 people from the "SS."
Russian police detain youths chanting Nazi slogans
Reuters, November 5, 2008
Russian riot police have detained around 500 nationalist protesters,
some making Nazi salutes and shouting "Heil Hitler", after they tried
to join an unauthorised demonstration in Moscow.
Disturbances also broke out at nationalist marches elsewhere in
Russia on a national holiday following what human rights groups say
are growing problems with racism.
Several hundred youths, some wearing surgical masks and shouting
"Russia for Russians" and "Forward, Russia!", turned up in Moscow for
a march organised by the Russian Movement against Illegal Immigration
and another group.
Scuffles broke out when riot police blocked their way and moved in to
"At the moment all protests have ended," a spokesman for Moscow's
police, Viktor Biryukov, told the Interfax news agency.
"Over the day around 500 people have been detained in the city. They
were basically participants in unauthorised protests."
The organisers said on their website www.rusmarsh.org they had tried
to march towards Red Square, next to the Kremlin.
Seventeen people were also arrested after a fight broke out between
about 50 youths in a park in Solnechnogorsk, near Moscow, Interfax
quoted local police sources as saying.
It said police confiscated stun guns, knives and bats in the clashes
between local youths and people from the Caucasian regions such as
Chechnya, Dagestan, Georgia and Azerbaijan.
The Moscow Human Rights Bureau reported a rise in racist crimes in
the first 10 months of this year, with 113 people killed and 340
wounded. This was a 50 percent rise from the 2007 figure, Interfax
quoted the Bureau's director as saying.
At around 7pm Tuesday (0500 Wednesday NZT) five or six skinheads
shouting nationalist slogans stabbed and killed an Uzbek street
cleaner in western Moscow, a police source told Interfax.
The police source did not link the attackers to the protests earlier
in the day.
Unemployment is low but many Russians oppose temporary work permits
for people from poor former Soviet republics.
In the Siberian city of Novosibirsk, 20 to 30 anti-fascist protesters
tried to block 200 people who walked through the town chanting
nationalistic slogans, Interfax reported.
A similar march was banned by authorities in Vladivostok on Russia's
Pacific Coast, although a rally was sanctioned.
An overnight explosion damaged sleepers and left a small crater a
railway station in southern Moscow, but no one was hurt and rail
traffic was not disrupted, news agencies said.
The Kremlin introduced the Day of People's Unity holiday in 2005. It
celebrates the defeat of Polish invaders in 1612 and replaces a
communist celebration of the 1917 revolution. For most Russians, the
day has no political or social significance.
Medvedev says justice, freedom and patriotism are key Russian values
Rossiya TV, November 5, 2008 BBC Monitoring
Social and political justice, freedom, the protection of people's
lives and wellbeing, family and patriotism are the main values in
modern Russian society, Russian President Dmitriy Medvedev has said in
his first address to the Federal Assembly, broadcast live on state-run
Rossiya TV on 5 November.
He said: "And now about the values. They are well-known: justice,
which is understood as political equality, courts' fairness and the
responsibility of leadership, and which is realized as social
guarantees. It requires overcoming poverty and corruption and seeking
a decent place for every person in society and for the whole Russian
nation in the system of international relations.
"This is freedom: personal, individual freedom; the freedom of
entrepreneurship, speech, religion, [freedom] to choose a place to
live and one's occupation, and general, national freedom, the
independence of the Russian state.
"The life of a person, his or her wellbeing and dignity, interethnic
peace, the unity of various cultures, the protection of small nations.
And recognizing the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia is, by
the way, an example of such protection.
"Family traditions, love and fidelity, taking care of the young and
the elderly, patriotism. When we take the most sober and critical look
at the national history and at our present, which is far from ideal,
in any circumstances [we see] the belief in Russia, a deep attachment
to one's native land, to our great culture.
"These are our values, these are the foundations of our society, our
moral guidelines. And, plainly speaking, these are obvious things
understandable to everyone, the common idea about which makes us a
single people - Russia. This is something we will not renounce under
"Our values also form our ideas about the future. We are striving for
a just society of free people. We know that Russia will be a
prosperous and democratic country, strong and at the same time
comfortable for living, the best country in the world for the most
talented, demanding, independent and critically-minded citizens."
(C/r: 09:09'09 - 09:11'34)
Nashi Criticizes U.S.
The Moscow Times, November 5, 2008
About 15,000 members of the pro-Kremlin youth group Nashi have staged
an anti- American protest near the U.S. Embassy.
Some held lit jack-o'-lanterns for what they called the Helloween
American Show, with Halloween intentionally misspelled.
On each pumpkin was written the name of someone who supposedly died
as a result of conflicts allegedly unleashed by the United States.
Some of the names appeared to be those of South Ossetians.
Inter-Ethnic Clash Near Moscow
FSU Monitor, November 5, 2008
Chechens and ethnic Russian soldiers clashed in the Moscow suburb of
Solnechnogorsk, according to a November 5, 2008 article posted on the
web site of the national daily "Komsomolskaya Pravda." The clash took
place on November 3 and started with a dispute at an open-air market
place. Both sides agreed to meet to finish the fight later that
evening. Around 30 Chechens fought with 40 paratroopers and local
residents; both sides were armed. One man was hospitalized with stab
wounds, another with gunshot wounds. Police detained 17 men and put
several others on the wanted list. They also brought charges of
inciting ethnic hatred against one of the Chechens.
2 Killed in Attacks During Holiday
The Moscow Times » Issue 4025, November 6, 2008
Youths killed two people from Central Asia and assaulted two others,
including a Turkmen diplomat, in separate attacks that came on a
national holiday celebrating Russian unity, Moscow officials said
The 3-year-old holiday - People's Unity Day, which was introduced in
2005 to replace the traditional celebration of the 1917 Bolshevik
Revolution - has increasingly been used by ultranationalists to rail
against dark-skinned immigrants from the Caucasus and Central Asia.
Gangs stabbed an Uzbek and a Turkmen to death in separate attacks,
Another victim was hospitalized after being attacked by skinheads,
The Turkmen Embassy in Moscow said one of its staffers was
hospitalized after dozens of youths attacked around midday Tuesday
outside the consular section in central Moscow. A spokeswoman who
requested anonymity in accordance with embassy policy said the
diplomat suffered bruises and was in satisfactory condition.
Riot police on Tuesday detained around 500 people who defied a ban on
rallies connected to the holiday.
Hate crimes in Russia are soaring. In the first 10 months of this
year, 113 people were killed and 340 injured in xenophobic attacks,
according to the Moscow Bureau for Human Rights, which said it was a
50 percent increase over last year.
Nearly half of the attacks took place in Moscow.
Jewish Agency HQ vandalized in Russia
JTA, November 6, 2008
Vandals painted swastikas and anti-Semitic graffiti on the Jewish
Agency for Israel headquarters in the southern Russian city of Saratov.
The graffiti appeared late Sunday night on both the headquarters and
on a neighboring building that houses local operations of the Chesed
welfare agency, according to Jewish.ru.
Earlier that day, the building had been used for classes and training
for Jewish children and teenagers.
The local Jewish Agency representative said it was not the first
anti-Semitic incident in the city in recent years.
In 2005, skinheads attacked a student; in 2006, someone broke a
window in the Jewish Agency headquarters; and in May 2007, extremists
planted an explosive device in the local synagogue that failed to
Neo-Nazis Toss Kyrgyz Man From Train
FSU Monitor, November 6, 2008
Neo-Nazis tossed a Kyrgyz man from a moving train in Moscow, according
to a November 6, 2008 report by Jewish.ru. The attack took place at
the end of October. The victim cannot walk on his own as a result of
the incident; there are currently no suspects. The attack came to the
attention of the news media because the victim shared the same
hospital ward with an ethnic Buryat doctor who was assaulted in Moscow
by skinheads around the same time.
Statistics of attacks based upon aggressive xenophobia
(January October 2008)
Moscow bureau for human rights, November 6, 2008
During October 15 attacks were recorded, and 6 deceased and 18 victims
were their result. Greatest number of incidents took place in Moscow
and Moscow region (6 deceased, 9 victims), they are followed by
Voronezh (4 victims), Primorsky region (3 victims), Yekaterinburg,
Nalchik (by 1 victim). The following suffered from the largest number
of attacks: Tajiks (2 deceased), Uzbeks (1 deceased, 2 victims),
Azerbaijanians (1 deceased, 5 victims), Kirghizes (1 deceased, 1
victim), Russians (1 deceased), Kalmyks (2 victims), Koreans, Balkars,
Buryats (by 1 victim).
Besides, in October two attempts of mass fights based upon
inter-national problems were recorded in Moscow.
On October 18 the militia employees prevented a fight between the
natives of Armenia and Azerbaijan at the South-West of Moscow.
On October 19 the Moscow militia prevented a large fight at the
North-East of Moscow between the Muscovites and natives of Caucasus
where participation of about 100 people was planned.
In October the next attempt to use the "Kondopoga technology" was
also recorded. Rape and murder of 15-year-old A. Beshnova committed on
October 1 night in the Western district of Moscow became the cause for
nationalist hysteria on the part of ultra-rights. Though the case is
not yet investigated, the nationalists accused two Dagestans at once
and arranged the unapproved meeting (according to their assertions,
the meeting started spontaneously). The situation proved to be so
strained that the authorities even closed the local market
temporarily. It should be noted that the authorities responded to
nationalistic activity actively enough. Some of agitators-nationalists
Early in October the leaflets were thrown about in the Ardy village,
Kilemarsky district of republic of Mariy El, directed in the opinion
of the investigators at kindling of hate between Russians and Caucasians.
An article was published on October 16 in the newspaper "RBCDaily"
"Moscow took in excess with migrants" asserting that the migrants
would displace the Russians from their workplaces in Moscow; a figure
of 10 mln. migrants allegedly living in Moscow was presented without
any grounds and the readers were intimidated with the fact that the
migrants would bring up the questions on creation of various
autonomies in future.
On October 24 an interview of DPNI leader A. Belov was published on
web-site of the agency "New region" where he asserted groundlessly
that "the people who differ from you in outward appearance" (natives
of Caucasus and Central Asia were meant) commit the larger number of
crimes, and intimidated the readers with 7 million gastarbeiters who
live in Moscow and would attack the Muscovites in mass due to
unemployment; he also called for deportation of migrants and mass
arming of the population.
On October 31 an article "Kindling of national friendship" was
published in the newspaper "Moskovsky komsomolets" asserting with
quotation of nameless militia sources that visitants form Kirghizia,
Uzbekistan and other Central Asian countries are to blame of 70% of
the street criminality cases.
In October a serious combat started between various nationalist
groups on the eve of "Russian march" mass procession of nationalists
planned for November 4. The DPNI leader A. Belov (Potkin) called upon
all the nationalists to agitation among their friends and
acquaintances and trying to bring as many as possible of them to the
procession (5 persons at least) and announced the intension to attract
up to 5000 people to the march totally. Preparation to the march was
accompanied by xenophobe appeals, for example: "Whole spheres of the
city economy are occupied by ethno-criminal communities acting in
indissoluble connection with corrupt officials. Islamization is the
most important factor of growing national tension in the capital.
Plans of erection of gigantic Islamic center in Moscow with minarets
exceeding the height of the Temple of Christ the Savior are a
provocation and challenge to all the Muscovites". The slogan: "Russia
is a Russian land!" was approved as the general slogan of the
procession, and "Moscow is a Russian city!" in Moscow. At the same
time it was announced that it is prohibited to use the party symbols,
"provocative radical slogans and shouts", "salutations that can be
interpreted by the press incorrectly" (the Nazi salutation is meant)
during the march.
Eight facts of vandalism based upon xenophobia were totally recorded
in October in Vladivostok, Leningrad region, Voronezh, Kaliningrad,
Novosibirsk, Ulyanovsk, Saratov, and Volgograd.
During the period since January till October, 2008 254 attacks at
least were recorded based upon xenophobia, and 113 deceased and 340
victims at least were their result.
The largest number of attacks was recorded in Moscow and Moscow
region (48 deceased, 162 victims at least), they are followed by St.
Petersburg and Leningrad region (19 deceased, 36 victims at least),
Sverdlovsk region (6 deceased, 8 victims), Yaroslavl (4 deceased),
Ulyanovsk region (3 deceased, 3 victims), Ingushetia (2 deceased, 3
victims), Omsk (2 deceased, 2 victims), Novosibirsk (2 deceased),
Dagestan (1 deceased, 23 victims at least), Voronezh (2 deceased, 16
victims at least), Nizhni Novgorod region (2 deceased, 4 victims),
Petrovsk-Zabaikalsky, Udmurtia (by 1 deceased, 3 victims), Stavropol,
Tula, Chelyabinsk region (be 1 deceased, 2 victims), Togliatti,
Obninsk and Saratov region (by 1 deceased, 1 victim), Kaluga region (1
deceased), Nalchik (29 victims at least), Bryansk (14 victims),
Vladivostok (13 victims), Lipetsk (8 victims at least), Kazan,
Kaliningrad (by 6 victims), Ryazan region (5 victims), Republic of
North Ossetia, Ufa (by 4 victims), Arkhangelsk region (3 victims),
Republic of Chuvashia, Amur, Tver, Volgograd and Vladimir regions (by
2 victims), Kursk, Pervouralsk, Oryol, Yaroslavl, Novgorod region,
Rostov-on-Don, Republic of Kalmykia, Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria,
Vologda, Tambov (by 1 victim).
The following suffered most of all due to radical nationalists:
Uzbeks (17 deceased, 22 victims), Kirghizes (10 deceased, 5 victims),
Tajiks (9 deceased, 35 victims), Russians (8 deceased, 34 victims),
Azerbaijanians (8 deceased, 23 victims), Armenians (4 deceased, 3
victims), Dagestans (2 deceased, 26 victims at least), Chechens (2
deceased, 22 victims), Kalmyks (2 deceased, 6 victims at least),
Ingushes (2 deceased, 4 victims), Turks (2 deceased, 1 victim),
Gypsies (2 deceased), Chineses (1 deceased, 13 victims), Moldavians,
Germans, Tuvinians (by 1 deceased), natives of the countries of Near
East and North Africa (12 victims), Indians (4 victims), Koreans, Jews
(3 victims), Englishmen, Mongols, Georgians (2 victims), Kazakhs (2
victims at least), Buryats, Lebaneses, Ossetins, Turkmens, Shri
Lankians , Frenchmen, Swedish, Japaneses (by 1 victim).
Basing upon the monitoring results, it's possible to speak about
considerable quantitative growth of attacks with lethal outcome as
compared with previous years. Up to the present the number of deceased
and victims exceeded the level of 2007 almost one and a half times.
Russian president stresses importance of fighting extremism and xenophobia
ITAR-TASS, November 7, 2008
St Petersburg, 7 November: Russian President Dmitriy Medvedev has
instructed law enforcement bodies to pay particular attention to
investigating cases which have to do with extremism and xenophobia.
"This factor, especially in the conditions of financial difficulties,
could be used in quite specific ways," the president stressed,
speaking in St Petersburg at a conference on the improvement of work
of law enforcement bodies.
Medvedev stressed that the issues of countering extremism and
xenophobia "must by under the direct control" of both federal and
regional law enforcement structures.
"Taking into account our country's history, culture, ethnic and
confessional composition, these manifestations are particularly
shameful and dangerous for our country," the head of state said.
He called on law enforcement bodies to "actively engage in"
precluding such crimes. According to the head of state, the question
is about "the practice of applying norms regarding such crimes". "We
have legislation to that effect, criminal proceedings should be
instituted (against those responsible), high-quality materials should
be drawn up in such cases, they should be referred to the court and
the court should deliver verdicts according to relevant articles (of
the Criminal Code)," he said.
Medvedev stressed that "this will have quite obvious consequences,
one cannot underestimate the general preventive importance of these
LAID-OFF MIGRANT WORKERS BEG FOR ODD JOBS
Bigotry MonitorUCSJ's weekly newsletter, Volume 8, Number 44,
November 7, 2008
On October 31 at around noon, hundreds of migrant workers formed a
sort of labor market along Yaroslavskoye Shosse for people needing
work done on their homes or dachas, "Novaya Gazeta" has reported. The
men lined up along the highway were divided by nationality, with
workers from Tajikistan, Moldavia, Belarus, and Russian regions
congregating in separate groups. They approached cars that stopped,
hoping to be offered work.
The men said most of them had ended up looking for work along the
highway after developers laid them off, citing economic restraints--or
simply refused to pay them.
"A building site hires us, and we work one, two or three months, but
they don't pay us any money and just throw us out," Tajik national
Dzhamshi Makhmudov, 50, told "Novaya Gazeta" while waiting at the side
of the road. "We come here because private individuals pay more."
According to Makhmudov, the workers stay near Yaroslavskoye Shosse for
days and sleep close to the highway in garages or neighboring houses.
Police regularly round up men and force them to work, he said, where
they are neither fed nor paid and are often beaten with batons.
SKINHEADS MURDER ONE UZBEK STREET SWEEPER AND INJURE ANOTHER
Bigotry MonitorUCSJ's weekly newsletter, Volume 8, Number 44,
November 7, 2008
In Moscow, a group of youths carried out two attacks on Uzbek
nationals, Interfax reported on November 4. A law enforcement source
told the corporate-owned news agency that five or six young men with
shaved heads wearing short padded black jackets repeatedly stabbed an
Uzbek man, a street sweeper, on Ivan Franko street. The victim died on
the spot. Eyewitnesses say that during the attack the youths were
shouting nationalist slogans.
According to the same law enforcement source, within an hour the same
group attacked another street sweeper on Yekaterina Budanova street.
He too was severely beaten and stabbed in the back. He has been
hospitalized. The skinheads fled the scene; a search for them is under
Migrant Workers Fleeing Moscow Neighborhood After Murder of Schoolgirl
FSU Monitor, November 7, 2008
In the wake of the rape and murder of an ethnic Russian school girl in
Moscow's Mozhaysk district by a migrant worker from Central Asia,
migrants are leaving the neighborhood fearing indiscriminate revenge
attacks, according to a November 7, 2008 report posted on Jewish.ru.
Russia's largest far-right group, the Movement Against Illegal
Immigration (DPNI), prominently featured the murder in its
anti-migrant propaganda, and on November 4, the body of an ethnic
Turkmen was found near the Kuntsevo movie theater. Witnesses stated
that a group of young men attacked him. Later that same night, another
Central Asian man was attacked nearby.
"Tajik and Uzbek migrant workers are trying to return home," said the
head of communal services in the Mozhaysk district, a fact reaffirmed
by another local official, who said that ten migrant workers in charge
of maintaining her apartment block have already left. Those who remain
are trying hard to return home from work before dark.
Neo-Nazis Stab Fourteen Year Old in Izhevsk
FSU Monitor, November 10, 2008
A neo-Nazi gang stabbed a 14-year-old boy from Azerbaijan in Izhevsk,
Russia (Republic of Udmurtiya), according to a November 10, 2008
report by the Sova Information-Analytical Center. On October 12, the
gang ambushed Nadirli Nadira Shakin-oglu outside a store, stabbing him
twice in the back and six times in the chest. Doctors saved the
child's life in the hospital and police have detained suspects, who
were charged with attempted murder. So far, no hate crimes charges
have been filed.
Extremist Crimes Up 62% in Russia, Government Says
FSU Monitor, November 10, 2008
Extremist crimes in Russia are up 62% in the first nine months of this
year compared to 2007, the government's Investigative Committee
reported, according to a November 10, 2008 article in the national
daily "Novye Izvestiya." The Committee recorded 380 extremist crimes,
including several hate crimes. However, in line with other Russian
government agencies' practice, the terms "extremist crimes" and "hate
crimes" or "hate speech" are not disaggregated in the Committee's
statistics, meaning that many of the "extremist crimes" reported could
involve non-violent political opposition activity, intemperate blog
postings that offend local officials, attacks on police and soldiers
in restive regions like Chechnya and Ingushetiya, and hate crimes
targeting ethnic and religious minorities.
Russian Has Bright Future in Poll
Kommersant, November 12, 2008
The majority of its citizens (82%) expect Russia to join the ranks of
the world's ten leading countries in the next 15-20 years, according
to a new poll by the All-Russia Center for the Study of Public
Opinion. Thirty-seven percent of respondents say Russia should "regain
the superpower status the USSR had," compared to 34 percent in 2003.
"Lagging behind the advanced countries in economic development" is
seen by 44 percent of respondents as the main obstacle to that
Russia's progress in the world.
Confidence is mounting. In 2003, 35 percent of respondents thought
Russia would become one of the most "economically developed and
politically influential" of the world's countries. Now 45 percent say
so, although that figure was 2 percent greater at the end of last
year. General director of the All-Russia Center for the Study of
Public Opinion Valery Fedorov attributed the slight reversal of
opinion to the complex economic this year.
The number of those who think Russia should "increase its leadership
in the post-Soviet area" has decreased from 16 percent in 2003 to 8
percent, which Fedorov considers an acknowledgment that "Russia's main
communication is not with Ukraine or Kazakhstan, but with the European
Union, United States and China." The number of Russians who think the
country "should have strong armed forces to be considered a great
power" rose from 24 percent in January 2007 to 35 percent now.
Fedorov pointed out that unpopular measures may be needed in the
course of necessary economic reforms. "Everything depends on how the
authorities explain the need for them," he said, recalling that, in
the early 1990s, difficult reforms were carried out with the popular
understanding that "collapse and an even bigger crisis" would occur
Turkey President of Religious Affairs believes Russia is a model of
state that keeps religious freedom
Interfax Religion, November 13, 2008
Moscow, November 13, Interfax President of the Religious Affairs of
the Turkish Republic Ali Bardakoglu noted recent positive tendencies
in development of religious organizations in Russia.
"Russia has gained great power after eighty atheistic years and has
become an important center for promoting religious teachings. We're
happy that religion enjoys such freedom in Russia," Bardakoglu said on
Thursday speaking at a conference on Islamic education.
He also pointed out that Muslims, the second largest religious
community in Russia, actively developed their culture and education.
"It's the first time I've come to Russia, a friendly country for me,
and it's a great honor. I'm glad to see that today Russian Muslims
give us an example of developing their culture," the Turkish
Possible Hate Crime in Moscow Leaves Victim Dead
FSU Monitor, November 13, 2008
A group of teenager boys attacked a non-Russian man in Moscow, beating
him to death, according to a November 13, 2008 report by the Sova
Information-Analytical Center. The attack took place on November 3,
2008 on Gashek Street. Bystanders reportedly did nothing to stop the
murder. Police eventually arrived, but it is not known if any arrests
have been made.
Multiple Attacks on Foreign Students in Penza, Russia
FSU Monitor, November 13, 2008
Five foreign students have been attacked in Penza, Russia over the
course of three days, according to a November 12, 2008 report by the
national daily "Komsomolskaya Pravda." The victims believe their
assailants, who wore white masks, were neo-Nazis. One citizen of
Turkmenistan was hospitalized with a concussion, a Syrian was
assaulted in a store by men who asked him, "Foreigner, why did you
come here?", and an Indian student was beaten on November 10 as soon
as he exited his dormitory. The two other victims were from
Turkmenistan, but the article didn't give details about those attacks.
The attackers' MO is to knock a victim down from behind, then kick him
repeatedly before fleeing.
University officials have increased security and advised their foreign
students not to go out alone. The article pointed out that two local
neo-Nazis face murder charges in Moscow for allegedly killing citizens
of Tajikistan and India, but there is little information about the
size of the neo-Nazi movement in Penza.
Kiev uses Stalin-era famine to divide Russia, Ukraine Medvedev
RIA Novosti, November 14, 2008
MOSCOW, November 14 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's president has accused
Kiev of using the Stalin-era famine to drive a wedge between Ukraine
and Russia and urged efforts to forge a common position on the tragedy.
In a letter to Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko released by the
Kremlin on Friday, Dmitry Medvedev said Kiev's position meant he could
not attend events to commemorate the famine, known as the Holodomor,
in Ukraine due later this month.
"Ukraine has been using the tragic events of the early 1930s to
achieve its political ends," Medvedev said, adding these efforts are
"aimed at disuniting our nations which have for centuries been linked
by historical, cultural and spiritual bonds, special friendship and
Medvedev suggested the two countries start seeking common approaches
to the events, and invite experts from Kazakhstan, Belarus and other
ex-Soviet states affected by the famine to join the effort.
"At the moment, however, I do not believe my participation in
Holodomor commemoration events is possible," Medvedev said.
Yushchenko has declared 2008 the year to commemorate the Holodomor,
which the country's leadership insist was an act of genocide against
Ukraine by the Soviet authorities.
Estimates vary widely as to the number of deaths in Ukraine caused by
the forced collectivization of the early 1930s, along with the
devastating purges of Ukrainian intelligentsia, religious leaders and
politicians under Stalin. Some sources cite figures of over 7 million.
Moscow has rejected Kiev's interpretation of the tragedy saying that
besides Ukraine the famine also affected different ethnic groups in
vast territories in the North Caucasus, the Volga region, central
Russia, Kazakhstan, west Siberia and the south Urals.
The United Nations General Committee refused last month to include
the Holodomor on its agenda, supporting Russia's recommendation to
exclude the famine from the UN session
The European Parliament adopted a resolution in October declaring the
famine of 1932-1933 a crime "against humanity" but stopping short of
using the word "genocide." In July 2008, the Parliamentary Assembly of
the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe also condemned
the famine without recognizing it as an act of genocide.
The leaders of Poland, Georgia and the Baltic States have officially
announced they will attend a forum on the famine in Kiev on November
22, Ukraine's Foreign Ministry said last week.
Other Holodomor commemoration events are scheduled for November 17
FIGHT EXTREMISM AND XENOPHOBIA, MEDVEDEV SAYS
Bigotry MonitorUCSJ's weekly newsletter, Volume 8, Number 45,
November 14, 2008
At [a November 7th] meeting [ ], President Medvedev also instructed
law enforcement agencies to pay particular attention to investigating
cases which have to do with extremism and xenophobia, Itar-Tass
reported. "This factor, especially in the conditions of financial
difficulties, could be used in quite specific ways," Medvedev told the
same gathering. He stressed that the issues of countering extremism
and xenophobia "must be under the direct control" of both federal and
regional law enforcement structures.
"Taking into account our country's history, culture, ethnic and
confessional composition, these manifestations are particularly
shameful and dangerous for our country," he said.
But Medvedev did not offer his definition of extremism which under
Putin became broad enough to include anyone critical of the government.
Medvedev drove his point home by spelling out to his audience of law
enforcement officers that they must "actively engage in" precluding
such crimes. The question is about "the practice of applying norms
regarding such crimes,� he said. �We have legislation to that effect,
criminal proceedings should be instituted [against those responsible],
high-quality materials should be drawn up in such cases, they should
be referred to the court and the court should deliver verdicts
according to relevant articles [in the Criminal Code]."
NATIONAL BOLSHEVIK STABS POLICEMAN DURING NOVEMBER 7 MARCH
Bigotry MonitorUCSJ's weekly newsletter, Volume 8, Number 45,
November 14, 2008
Police arrested eight members of the National Bolshevik Party because
of "the use of banned symbols" during celebrations in St. Petersburg
on November 7, the 91st anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution, a
spokesman for the police authority of St. Petersburg city and the
Leningrad Region said, according to Interfax. One of the National
Bolsheviks stabbed and injured a policeman who was trying to arrest
him and that person faces a stricter penalty than the rest, the
spokesman told Interfax. Those arrested had tried to disrupt a
Outdoor events in St. Petersburg marking the revolution's anniversary
brought together only about 500 people, the police said.
RUSSIA LISTS 56 MAJOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS TO BE SHUT DOWN
Bigotry MonitorUCSJ's weekly newsletter, Volume 8, Number 45,
November 14, 2008
Following the surprise mid-October publication of a list of 56
religious organizations scheduled for liquidation, apparently for not
submitting correct accounts of their activities, Russia's Justice
Ministry has refused to reveal what stage any plans for liquidation
are at and precisely why the 56 organizations are on the list, Forum
18 news service reported on November 12. Among those listed are Old
Believer, Armenian Apostolic, Catholic, Protestant, Nestorian, Muslim,
and Buddhist organizations. None of 15 of the named organizations
Forum 18 spoke to had received any warning from the ministry before
the list's publication.
The Moscow Patriarchate stands for all-Russia youth organization based
on traditional values
Interfax Religion, November 14, 2008
Moscow, November 14, Interfax The Russian Orthodox Church believes
it necessary to establish a youth organization in Russia with an
ideology based on traditional values.
"We used to have a youth organization (Soviet youth organization
Komsomol IF) working all through the country. It did a lot of useful
work and many of those who belong to political elite today stepped out
of the organization, where they gained administrative experience," the
Chair of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church
Relations Metropolitan Kirill said answering the questions of the
Nashi youth movement.
The Metropolitan stressed that Komsomol was "toughly connected with
ideology and reflecting the collapse of ideology, the organization
According to the Metropolitan, today "there's a need for such
organization, but it shouldn't be associated with the Soviet ideology."
"We have to take all the best from the past and fill it with the
values of a thousand-year Russian history and then this youth
organization will be consolidated with real time-tested values instead
of sham ideals," Metropolitan Kirill said.
The Nashi representatives initiated the meeting to question
Metropolitan Kirill on church life. One of the questions referred to
the attitude of the Church to Komsomol as its 90th anniversary was
celebrated on October 29, 2008.
II ANALYSES, SURVEYS, COMMENTS
Turkish neo-nationalists and global ultra-nationalists form an axis of
By Kerim Balci
Today's Zaman, June 1, 2008
Why would Gündüz Aktan, a former ambassador and a declared
nationalist, refer to both Carl Schmitt (1888-1985) and Schmitt's
staunch critic, Leo Strauss (1899-1973), in the same article as
sources of inspiration to define the current domestic political
struggle in Turkey?
Aktan did this in his farewell article to the readers of the Radikal
daily on June 9, 2007 and claimed that Turkey's situation coincided
with Schmitt's view that politics is a struggle of different
lifestyles that can be fatal. Schmitt is known to be the ideologue of
National Socialism, and Leo Strauss was a Nazi survivor who immigrated
to the US to become the theoretician of the neo-conservative ideology.
What brought these two unlikely bedfellows together and made them a
source of inspiration to Aktan was their uncompromising antagonism
against liberalism. Schmitt believed that through its endeavor to
reconcile opposites, liberalism was an effort to change the intrinsic
characteristics of politics and Strauss believed in "the continuation
of the existing hegemony" by any means necessary. Schmitt believed
that war is a way to keep the current hegemony so it has to exist to
prevent the spread of liberalism. Strauss believed that "noble lies,"
robust internationalism, declarations of emergency, immunity from
accepted rules and laws and, finally, the aestheticization of violence
were all legitimate methods to preserve the standing hegemony.
Turkish neo-nationalists (Ulusalcı) do not have the intellectual depth
of Gündüz Aktan, but their operational strategies overlap with those
of Schmitt and Strauss to such an extent that it is unexplainable
without a link between the various embodiments of the Ulusalcı
ideology -- such as the Şemdinli gang, the Red Apple Coalition, the
Ergenekon gang and the Republican rallies -- and the two conflicting
ideologues of neo-conservatism. The link is in human form: Michael
Rubin, Daniel Pipes, Matthew Bryza, Barry Rubin, Zeyno Baran and Soner
Çağaptay (directly) and Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle and
Robert Novak (less explicitly).
The most visible link between the American neo-cons and the Turkish
Ulusalcıs is the love affair between Rubin and the self-marginalized
Turkish daily Cumhuriyet. Rubin, an associate of the American
Enterprise Institute (AEI), is the inventor of the term
"Islamofacism." In his articles in the Middle East Forum journal he
has openly praised names like Serdar Akinan, Tuncay Özkan and Nihat
Genç and compared Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to
French racist Jean-Marie Le Pen and Austrian fascist Jörg Haider. What
is interesting and unacceptable about Rubin is the fact that though he
has attacked Turkey after the March 1 memorandum with the worst of
words, he was still invited to the War Academy in Turkey to give a
conference. Rubin's claims about Fethullah Gülen reflect the rhetoric
of the Ulusalcıs to the point that he uses Gülen's name in its
distorted form (Fetullah), as is done by the Ulusalcıs of Turkey.
For an anti-imperialist newspaper like Cumhuriyet, Rubin, a political
strategist working with figures like William Kristol and Robert Kagan
who are leading the openly imperialist Project for the New American
Century (PNAC), should be the last name to be praised or used as a
reliable source in their pages. But this fellow and Cumhuriyet have
developed a fruitful relation wherein Rubin cites Cumhuriyet's
distortions as a source and then Cumhuriyet carries them to its
headlines as if they belonged to Rubin himself. This vicious circle of
"referencing" is used by other Ulusalcı publications. Aydınlık weekly,
for example, uses its relations with Andrey Melnikov of Nezavisimaya,
a daily published by the Izvestia Group in Russia, and Yana Amelina, a
foreign policy editor for the Russian News Agency, in the same way.
They are informed directly by Aydınlık or through its grandmaster Doğu
Perinçek's son Mehmet Perinçek, who has a post-graduate degree from
Moscow, and later on Aydınlık refers to them as reliable sources of
information about the Justice and Development Party (AK Party), the
future of Turkey, Islam and the Gülen Movement. These Russian names
are expectedly from the supporters of the Eurasia Movement and have
good relations with Mehmet Perinçek due to his active role in
Eurasianist circles. The Moscow bureau of the Ulusalcıs is run by
Mehmet Perinçek and, in a striking similarity to Rubin, they have also
organized conferences in Turkey managing to reach the core of the
Political analyst Emre Uslu says that it is almost impossible to
detect the organic links of the Ulusalcıs with the West because these
people were the ones who once managed almost all relations between
Turkey and the West. So their relations may be a continuation of old
innocent relations. These relations are also hard to detect, according
to Uslu, because they are being managed by institutions, think-tanks
and academicians that have legitimate covers.
The think tanks actively engaging the Turkish Ulusalcıs are AEI, the
Washington Institute for Near East Policy and the Hudson Institute.
The institutional relations between the American neo-cons and the
Turkish Ulusalcıs are run by the office of Dick Cheney, Richard Perle
of AEI and Zeyno Baran of the Hudson Institute on the American side
and, on the other side, by Mustafa Süzer, former owner of Kentbank and
a close associate of Perle, and İlhan Selçuk, "big brother" of
Cumhuriyet. Süzer's meetings with Dick Cheney were disclosed in the
Turkish press and never denied by either side. Selçuk is also reported
to have spoken with Cheney's advisors and established a back-channel
with the US vice president's office through Elçin Poyrazlar, the
Washington representative for Cumhuriyet. Writing in the Yeni Şafak
daily, Taha Kıvanç claimed that this back-channel had already been
established before the American occupation of Iraq and that Selçuk had
promised the Americans Turkey's support in return for American neo-con
support for the Turkish Ulusalcıs to come to power in Ankara.
Cengiz Çandar claimed in a recent article in the Referans daily that
the Ulusalcıs are using the pretext of a future American operation in
Iran as an opportunity to convince the neo-cons that an Ulusalcı
government in Ankara would serve them better.
The think tank connections of the Ulusalcıs are working both ways: The
Ulusalcıs receive tactics and information from the think tanks, and
they also try to influence the American administration through the
think tanks. One example of this reciprocity can be seen in the
articles of the Washington Institute's Çağaptay, in which Çağaptay has
not only labeled Turkey's AK Party government as a danger to
Turkish-American relations, but has even guided former President Ahmet
Necdet Sezer on how to prevent the AK Party's further growth and
Constitutional reforms. The Hudson Institute meeting in which the
scenario of a possible military intervention in Turkey was discussed
with two high-ranking Turkish generals in attendance is another example.
This advisory connection is evidenced mainly in newspaper articles
from neo-con writers. The Washington Times, The Washington Post and
The New York Times frequently publish articles by the American allies
of the Ulusalcıs. Figures like Rubin, Pipes, Jim Hoagland and Novak
try to convince Americans that post-July 22, 2007 Turkey is no longer
an ally of the US; that the AK Party government would feel better at
home in Iran than in the US; that the AK Party uses the rhetoric of EU
membership and economic development to conceal its real intentions;
that the real allies of America in Ankara are the soldiers and the
American should work with them alone; that Turkey should not be taken
into the EU; and that Turkey will soon become a second Iran in the
region. One protagonist of this last absurd idea is Rubin, who wrote
recently in National Review Online that a prospective return of Gülen
to Turkey would have the same effect as Khomeini's return to Iran from
Paris and called on Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice not to support
the AK Party government even in the name of democracy. Rubin was
sarcastically critical of the American Ambassador in Ankara Ross
Wilson, who managed to convince Rice to stand by democracy in Turkey,
claiming that Wilson knew only partying in the garden of the embassy.
Ulusalcıs also have allies in the US State Department. Richard Perle
is said to have worked on the name of the Turkish Ulusalcıs to
convince -- successfully - Assistant Secretary of State for European
Affairs Dan Fried that the AK Party is no good for the American
policies in or around Turkey. Ali Aslan, the Washington representative
of the Zaman daily, thinks that this is the only explanation that
could explain w<br/><br/>(Message over 64 KB, truncated)