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The Circassian World Through The Eyes Of Radio-Adiga

posted by eagle on April, 2010 as CIRCASSIA ADIGA

The circassian world through the eyes of Radio-Adiga

Ali Hadish 

Salam alykum,
I would like to begin first with thanks to our hosts and all who were involved in organizing this conference. Radio-Adiga believes that conferences such as this one have an enormous importance for Circassians. This is not the first conference that you are organizing and we hope it will not be the last. The radio-adiga ream to thank you for your efforts . I would like to thank also all of the participants of the conference for coming and taking a part in this important event.

My speech is about how radio Adiga sees the Circassian world and about the radio itself and how it developed. For better understanding of the circumstances that brought us to establish the radio, I have to start with a short introduction about our people and the place we live in.

In Israel there are two Circassian villages: Rihania, with 1000 residents and Kfar-Kama with 3000 residents. Both villages were established between the years 1876 to 1878 after the Russians conquered the Caucasus and exiled the Crcassians from their homeland. First they were under the rule of the Ottomans, them the British Empire and today the state of Israel. As you can see, in addition to the war and deportation they had to adapt to the changes in the rule and life style constantly. Therefore, with the fact that the Soviets close the gate to the Caucasus, the deported and their descendants concentrated in their existence more than in returning home. These things made the living in Diaspora to reality and the returning home to a dream. Well, the dream almost came true when the Soviet collapsed, but the alienation that was created in time and the fact that still the Russians controlled the area caused the expectation for a massive immigration to be false. 
Living for decades among other cultures affected the Circassians and they started losing their language and tradition. The generation that was physically deported from the Caucasus became old and died, so the young were born in to a new reality that was different from the one of their parents and the connections between the Circassians to their tradition, language and other Circassian communities began to break.

This reality created Radio-Adiga. A number of people that understood that the situation is the same in all other Circassian communities and that they must take an action in order to slow, stop and reverse the deterioration. The solution that they thought is best was the establishment of a radio that will function as a link between the Circassian communities all over the world. The idea was that the radio will spread information concerning Circassians (news, language, songs and religious programs) believing that if the people will have the information their self identity will strengthen and it will make them taking action for achieving the goal of returning Circassia to Circassians. 

As every new thing we had problems in the beginning, technically it was a new area that was learned while working. Financially the burden was carried by the establishers. As said, one of the reasons for the loss connection between communities was the lack of information that is why they established an internet site as well as the radio and decided to broadcast news on a weekly base. Assuming that most of Circassians were no longer spiking the Circassian language, the news broadcast was given in Circassian, Arabic, English, Turkish and Russian. Unfortunately that assumption turned out to be true when UNESCO included our language in the atlas of endangered languages.

We believe that other Circassian communities were under the same conditions that is why several organizations were established there too. These organizations and the radio are cooperating after they saw that we are working with consistency towards our goals and Radio-Adiga was recognized as the circassian voice. These connections and cooperation gave the radio team confirmation that the work they are doing is not in vain. Furthermore, it gave us the opportunity to take part in very interesting and important projects, such as helping people who want to immigrant back to the homeland, and we achieved one small goal of the radio - unity and cooperating with other circassian groups.
The radio team is working in the local area as well and are taking part in circassian forums, giving lectors to the youth, cooperating with other groups in Kfar-Kama, participating the memorial day ceremony and more. In these actions we hope to raise the awareness in all the subjects I mentioned earlier. The process in long and there is a lot of work to be done but we are already seeing the outcome of this work. 

Along with other groups and people several significant achievements were made:

  1. Recognition of the circassian genocide by channel 1 which is run by the Israel Broadcasting Authority that was made in their coverage of last year’s ceremony. This video was putted on the net with translation and made enormous effect all over the world. We hope that in time we will get an official recognition of the Israeli government and not only it’s T.V.
  2. New regulation that allows public servants taking a day off on the 21th of May.
  3. Cooperation with groups for unity in the demonstration all over the world on the memorial days, and also with those who oppose the Sochi Olympics that is planned on the 150th anniversary to the circassian genocide while ignoring the history of the place and the circassians.
  4. Having reporters in the Caucasus.
  5. Taking part in the foiling of the plan to unite the republic of Adigeya with Krasnodar. Unfortunately, similar a move, dividing the Caucasus, was made recently and we hope to stop it.
  6. Aiding financially in an important project that we hope will end soon.

    Radio-Adiga wants to achieve the next mini goals:
  • Use all means for getting public opinion on our side.
  • Continue cooperating with circassian organizations.
  • Recognition of the circassian genocide by Israel.
  • Financing the studies of who students and researchers who study circassian history.
  • Aiding those who want to return to the homeland.

These are mini goals that will help us achieving the ultimate goal which is to fulfill our ancestors’ last will – to return to the circassian homeland.

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