Tag: Russia

“Orus” means “foreign”


 

The upsurge of anti-Russian and separatist sentiment is marked in several republics of the country

In Russia, settled opinion: The Russian population is oppressed only in the North Caucasus republics. Somehow forgotten that the country is composed of many ethnic regions. Some of them are Russian perhaps worse off than their cousins ​​in the North Caucasus.

The Russian population in Kyzyl – capital of the Republic of Tuva, complains of worsening hostility towards them from the indigenous population. People say that some time has been relatively quiet, and suddenly they took up arms again.

– The relatively calm – does not mean good. On the streets – looks angry and hissing, “Orus” – that word mean aliens – says a resident of Kyzyl, a former school teacher of geography, Anna Kazakova. – It continues for more than 20 years. In the Soviet period, Russian was 50% of the population, now – less than 20%. On the streets periodically appear the inscription “Russian, get out!”

As a result, the outflow of people of Slavic appearance continues.

In the early 1990s, Tuva ASSR (now Republic of Tuva), famous for the fact that its territory in the Soviet Union began the first “Russian pogroms.” Tuvan youth began to smash the rural houses in which lived Russian. Then the stream poured into the cities and towns. On the map of the republic there were real hot spots – Khovu-Aqsa Sosnovka, Bai-Haak. There were riots with national overtones in Kyzyl.

– My family was leaving Tuva twice, because to live where you hate just because you’re Russian, it is impossible. And my family lived there for almost 50 years – says the 18-year-old resident of the town of Krasnoyarsk Territory Kuragino Svetlana Arkhipova. – It’s a shame and what the new place we believe someone else is called Tuvinians. In Tuva I liked. It is very beautiful and unique flora and fauna – you can see the deer, and camels. If it was possible, never went to their homes. But the fear generated by it, remains to this day, I can not fight it.

Writer, blogger Senchina Elizabeth, who also was born and spent her childhood in Tuva, said that in recent years come to their places of fear:

– I tried at every opportunity to visit this rich ancient culture of the region with her husband and children. My family live there.

However, after the streets were Kyzyl roam the crowd of angry, slovenly-dressed people, decided that the home is not worth visiting. They came from rural areas, unemployed and hungry. Attack those who do not like them. One gets the impression that they were hit by a certain force.

A friend of mine who lives in this city at 18 o’clock went to the store. The crowd beat him cruelly. Another friend of mine said that even in the summer after 17 hours on the street is better not to show up – can strongly beat or rape.

“SP”: – They come in a tourist in Tuva?

– Especially love these places artists and musicians. A magnificent, full of talent edge. But recently, the flow of tourists has declined significantly. Recently spoke with a poet has been in Tuva, he lived in a yurt, a lot of contact with the locals. The poet said, “survived by a miracle. They are quick-tempered, there is again something started. ”

Yesterday called out an acquaintance said that Tuva is becoming more Chinese.

A resident of Kyzyl Irina Portnov said: “During the restructuring of all life was hard in Tuva. People had to put the blame on someone. We decided to dump the representatives of other nationalities. They fought fiercely, with deafening screams. ”

– Nationalism, we, of course, is present but no longer has those terrible shape in the late 1980s – early 1990s – said a resident of Kyzyl Anna Morozova. – I tuvinka half and half Russian. In Soviet times, the first heads of government structures have been Tuva, and closure – only Russian. Last had more rights and powers. Until now, residents are Russian believe that indigenous people rescued from tuberculosis and syphilis. But the village dying of famine and plague, and not just from these diseases.

Judging by the stories of Russian citizens of the republic of Kalmykia, their position is almost indistinguishable from their peers in distress from Tuva.

– Began constant collision with a young Kalmyk persons of Slavic nationalities, with the attacking mob, beaten with cruelty, using rebar and lead clubs – says a resident of the capital – city of Elista, Zoe, who asked not to call her name. – They create a group of Kalmyk people aged 17-18 years, who attacked a crowd of several dozen people on lonely passers-by or on two or three people of Slavic appearance. Sometimes, beaten to death – the stakes.

– There is a mass exodus from the Kalmyk steppe. They come mainly in Elista, where unemployment is a long time ago. Unable to find work, they drink and rob. Russian killed only because they – Russian – says a resident of the Kalmyk capital Anton Perevalov.

On this occasion, the State Duma deputy Nikolai Kuryanovich sent requests to the Prosecutor General’s Office and the FSB. However, according to Russian residents of Elista, the situation has not changed.

– You are a complete heresy! I – radical elistinets, never heard about this, – shouted into the phone the head of the Office of Communications and Information Policy of the Government of the Republic of Kalmykia, Nikolai Sandzhiev. – I will not talk about it.

Novosibirsk analyst George Polyankin says that in the Republic of Buryatia this does not come up, but the Nationalists there claimed by Russian:

– Burnatsisty – well-established symbol of the Buryat nationalist stand on the positions of separatism and Russophobia.

Burnatsisty believe Russian colonialists seized their territory. Part burnatsistov ascribes Russian genocide and the slave trade.

Russia today they believe the state, standing on the oppression of minority positions in favor of Russian. Russian media called burnatsisty chauvinistic views, therefore, actively sympathetic to the North Caucasian separatists and Muslim ethnic organized crime groups.

Also burnatsisty accused of destroying Russian Buryat culture: the withering away of the language, the erosion of cultural traditions, and isolation from the Mongol world.

They are very popular among the Buryats. The people of Slavic appearance live there in a constant state of anxiety. In this country prospers nationalism household: for all inconveniences blamed Russian.

 

Source :http://svpressa.ru/society/article/56683/

 

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Meet the Kalmyks

Meet the Kalmyks


A tiny Jersey ethnic group traces its roots to Mongolia and Genghis Khan.

Route 9 and Freehold suggest Bruce Springsteen’s “Born to Run” and the lyrics, “Sprung from cages on Highway 9” and “Baby, this town rips the bones from your back.” They don’t conjure up the quietude of the three Buddhist temples and the Mongolian people known as the Kalmyks I encountered recently just off Route 9 and just south of Freehold.

Never heard of the Kalmyks? Neither had I, until I learned that this group of approximately 3,000 people—mostly New Jerseyans centered in Howell Township—is celebrating its 60th anniversary as Americans in 2011. New Jersey must indeed be the nation’s most ethnically diverse state if we have ethnic groups most of us have never even heard of. This year’s New Jersey Folk Festival, which often focuses on one of the state’s ethnic groups—its music, dance, and folklore—is featuring the Kalmyks on April 30 at an all-day event on the Douglass Campus of Rutgers University in New Brunswick.

The Kalmyks’ native land, Kalmykia, is one of the republics of the former USSR that remains within the Russian Federation today, with a population of about 350,000. It is the only predominantly Mongol and Buddhist land in Europe. Many Kalmyks, siding with the Whites against the Reds, fled the Soviet Union during the Bolshevik Revolution, and the remaining Kalmyks were deported to Siberia during World War II because of alleged anti-Soviet sympathies. It was not until 1951 that Kalmyks began to come to New Jersey. Earlier, they had been rejected under the Asian Exclusion Acts (repealed in 1943) and immigration quotas based on race (repealed in 1965). They found an ally in the United States Attorney General who argued that since Kalmykia is in European Russia, the Kalmyks are Europeans not Asians, going so far as to insist that they are “Caucasians”—which is silly, but so is racism.

Virtually all of the Kalmyks who began coming to New Jersey in 1951 had spent the years after World War II in displaced persons camps in Germany. They ended up there because, as the Nazis began their long retreat after the Battle of Stalingrad, some Kalmyks followed, staying just ahead of the Soviet Army.

Russian emigres living in the Howell area and the Tolstoy Foundation, which assists new immigrants, were instrumental in sponsoring the Kalmyks in New Jersey. In addition to the Kalmyk Buddhist temples there are several Russian Orthodox churches in Howell, as evidenced by their onion-shaped domes. Howell and Lakewood, farther south on Route 9, are thriving centers of Russo-American culture in New Jersey. (There also is a small Kalmyk contingent with one temple in Philadelphia.)

Originally a nomadic people, the Kalmyks were one of the innumerable tribes united by Genghis Khan in the course of conquering much of Europe and Asia in the 12th and early 13th centuries. When the Mongolian Empire faded into retreat, the Kalmyks were incorporated into Russia.

American Kalmyks speak English, of course, but may also speak Russian and Kalmyk. Anyone who has seen the Star Wars movies has heard Kalmyk spoken. It is the language of the Ewoks, those furry, cuddly bipeds living on the moon of Endor who, you may recall, were easily understood by the linguistically gifted robot, C-3PO.

It is almost as if one is on a New Jersey version of the moon of Endor when standing on Kalmuk Road (Kalmyk is spelled in a variety of ways) just short of where it becomes a dirt road leading to the Tashi Lhunpo Temple. The street may be considered the physical center of Kalmyk life in New Jersey; it inspired the title of a book in 2004, The Street—Kalmuk Road.

I find myself inside the temple’s social hall along with Maria Taunov and Augnel “Alta” Buruschkin, and also a monk serving us tea. I am told that the way to greet a monk is with a two-handed handshake, one’s forehead lowered onto the linked hands. The monk good-naturedly laughs at my clumsy greeting.

Most monks in Kalmyk temples are Tibetans. The Dalai Lama, recognized as the spiritual leader of the Kalmyks, has visited the Howell temples. Says Buruschkin, “I get up at 5 am every day and chant my prayers for two hours. This is what the Dalai Lama does, and I try to pattern myself after His Holiness.”
On arriving in their new land, most Kalmyks entered the building trades but, over the years, gravitated into electronics, professional careers and white-collar jobs. Buruschkin works for a consulting company. Taunov is a legal assistant at a New York City law firm, commuting to work and chanting her morning prayers quietly on the bus. On weekends she chants them at the altar found in most Kalmyk homes.

Taunov also teaches Buddhist principles to children at one of the temples on weekends. “There are great assimilationist pressures,” she says. “I know who I am, but I want Kalmyk children to know who they are.” Kalmyk families tend to be closer than other American families. Many households are multigenerational, and there is great deference paid to the elders as well as veneration of ancestors. “American freedom and openness are wonderful,” Taunov says, “but they make for more intermarriage and fewer children, because Kalmyk women, like other American women, don’t want to be confined to the home.”

I was introduced to Taunov and Buruschkin by Nicholas Olefer Jr., a Caucasian of Russian descent who is a convert to Buddhism and is on the New Jersey Folk Festival board. Olefer lives in Westchester County and practices and receives instruction at a Buddhist monastery in Carmel, New York. “No one cares who you are in a Buddhist environment; they care who your teacher is,” Olefer explains.

The Kalmyks believe in reincarnation—as do Hindus—but they prefer the term “rebirth.” I can’t say I really understand the difference, but I was struck by the eerie sincerity with which Buruschkin told me, “I lived during Buddha’s time, but I didn’t pay attention. Now I’m paying attention.”

Later in the day, the three took me to Rashi Gempil-Ling, another of the Buddhist temples just off Route 9. There were two buildings, a small one essentially empty except for a large prayer wheel—a round, beautifully decorated device believed to contain a million printed prayers wrapped around a central core. “We spin the wheel as a means of getting our prayers to multiply as they fly out into the world,” says Buruschkin, who has a small prayer wheel in his home.

We removed our shoes and entered the temple, where a service was going on. Everyone sat on the floor on pillows. One was handed to me, and I did my best to resurrect an earlier familiarity with the lotus position, only to develop a cramp in my left leg. The service was presided over by Art Engle, a Caucasian lay-teacher married to a Kalmyk woman. Engle has a PhD. in Buddhist studies from the University of Wisconsin. The service was conducted in Tibetan, and Engle swayed side to side as he chanted, as did many of those in attendance, including a Buddhist nun. I was struck by the fact that half the people at the service were non-Asian.

It was peaceful in the temple. I didn’t relish the prospect of facing the traffic for the drive home. The temple was only feet from Springsteen’s Route 9 and the suggestion, as in “Born to Run,” that one should flee the rapid pulse of New Jersey life. But in that temple, if only for a short while, I found an oasis of calm.

Contributing writer Michael Aaron Rockland’s two most recent books are Stones, a novel, and The George Washington Bridge: Poetry in Steel. A forthcoming memoir will cover the years he spent in Spain as a cultural attaché.

Source:http://njmonthly.com/articles/lifestyle/people/meet-the-kalmyks.html