In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Russian-Circassian War 1763 - 21 May 1864.exe
The Circassian Genocide
By Antero Leitzinger
The Eurasian Politician - Issue 2 (October 2000)
The Eurasian Politician - Issue 2 (October 2000)
Summary: The genocide committed against the Circassian nation by Czarist Russia in the 1800s was the biggest genocide of the nineteenth century. Yet it has been almost entirely forgotten by later history, while everyone knows the later Jewish Holocaust and many have heard about the Armenian genocide. "Rather than of separate, selectively researched genocides, we should speak of a general genocidal tendency that affected many – both Muslim and Christian – people on a wide scene between 1856 and 1956, continuing in post-Soviet Russia until today", writes Antero Leitzinger. This article was originally published in "Turkistan News".
The Massacre in History
By Eric Sterling, Studies on War and Genocide
Mark Levene and Penny Roberts (eds)
Vol. 1 in the series War and Genocide, New York: Berghahn Books, 1999.
Includes ‘The Circassians: A Forgotten Genocide?’ By Stephen D. Shenfield.
The massacre of the Circassians, a forgotten people, serves as the subject of Stephen D. Shenfield’s essay. The Circassians were forced to resettle after the tsarist conquest of their territory. Their homeland rested in the northwestern Caucasus and on the northeastern shore of the Black Sea--along the southern border of the Russian empire. Before the Russian invasion, Circassia possessed two million people and an area of 55,663 square kilometers. They fought against Russian invasions from 1763-1864 and ultimately were defeated, with many Circassians being deported to Turkey. The decision to deport the Circassians came in 1860; the Russians invaded from the north, accompanied by mobile columns of riflemen and Cossack cavalry; four thousand Circassian families left for Turkey. In 1862, Russian soldiers burned Circassian villages and trampled the crops; those who fled died in the forests and mountains of hunger and exposure. The Russian General Babich took his soldiers south, burning Circassian villages along the way. In May 1864, the remaining Circassians bonded together in a frenzied battle and emerged triumphant over the Russian invaders; the victory, however, proved to be short-lived because the Russians returned with more artillery and soundly defeated the Circassian men and women; dissatisfied by only killing the Circassian adults, the triumphant Russian soldiers sought out the children and shot cannon shells at them.
Exile Map Of The Circassians and Abkhazians
Circassian Congress demands recognition of Genocide of Adygeyan People
Chairman of ARSM ´´ Circassian Congress´´ Murat Berzegov 28.05.2005, Republic of Adygeya, Maykop
Circassians Demand Russian Apology For 19Th Century Genocide
Paul Goble, Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty Caucasus Report
Petition on Circassian Genocide
Petition campaign / May 21, The Remembrance Day
Russia's war campaigns concentrated in the Circassian lands of the Northwest Caucasus and the Black Sea coast. To oppress the Circassians, Russia ended up in a solution that was to have sinister historical significance: All the historical territory of the Circassians, the Kuban plains and the Black Sea coast, were to be cleansed of the original population. The Circassians were given two choices: they could move to the interior parts of the Empire, or flee to Turkey. Most Circassians chose Turkey. Mass deportations were started in 1860, and the consequences were catastrophic. A humanitarian disaster followed, and the Circassians immediately organized armed resistance, and made Sochi (Sashe) their capital, appealing for Turkey and the Western states to recognize independent Circassia. Their appeals were ignored.
In 1862, Russia again started violent deportations, and by May 1864, the Circassian resistance had been crushed. More than 400'000 Circassians as well as 200'000 Georgian Abkhazians and Ajars were compelled to flee for Turkey. The deportation did not take place without major violence, but the Russian imperial troops committed horrible massacres, and besides, thousands of people starved to death. In 1865, Russia decided to use the same methods to cleanse Chechnya, from where 5'000 extended families were deported to Turkey (the amount was huge compared with the size of the population at the time – a family is a very large unit).
It was really the first intentional large-scale genocide of the modern times, as well as the model case of the consequent tradition of ethnic cleansing. It was also the largest single genocide of the 19th century. It preceded the wave of pogroms and deportations that Russia used against the Jews, and it also preceded the tragic consequences that the same Russian expansion wars against Turkish territories had on Armenians after the turn of the century. For some reason, the Circassian genocide has never been given proper attention or researched well. The Circassian genocide ended at about same time with the launching of the Jewish deportations in 1880s, when more than three million Circassians had been expelled from the territories occupied by Russia. The numbers of those who were killed, are not known. Anyway, it meant 90 per cent of the whole Circassian population.
Anssi Kullberg, 1 Oct. 2003
The Eurasian Politician - October 2003