30 December 1980**, St 243/8

Secretariat. Memo from ANDROPOV about anti-Russian propaganda in Karachaevo-Cherkessk region, North Caucasus (7 pp).  [R 30 Dec 80, 7 pp]


[Translator’s notes are bracketed]


Of the Secretariat of the CC of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union

Re: Memorandum of the Committee for State Security of the USSR (Comrade Andropov), of December 9, 1980, #2576-A

[It is hereby resolved] to instruct the Department of Party Organizations and Propaganda of the CC CPSU to assist the Karachai-Cherkess Regional Committee of the CPSU in the upgrading of party organization and educational work with the population, as per memorandum of the Committee for State Security (Comrade Andropov)

[Signed illegibly, probably “M. Suslov”]


Vote results

Adopted at a meeting of the Secretariat of the CC, of 12.30.80

Secretaries of the CC:     Comrade M.A. Suslov: yea

Comrade A.P. Kirilenko: yea Comrade K.U. Chernenko: yea Comrade M.S. Gorbachev: yea Comrade B.N. Ponomaryov: yea Comrade V.I. Dolgikh: yea Comrade M.V. Zimyanin: yea Comrade K.V. Rusakov: yea

[Illegible signature] … Copies forwarded to Comrades Andropov, Solomentsev, Kapitonov, Zimyanin, Tyazhelnikov (along with the complete text of the KGB memorandum, to be hand- delivered)/ Sent out 12.31.80 [illegible signature] [Logo]

Committee for State Security of the USSR Top Secret


12.09.80, #2576-A/Moscow …3571

Attention: CC CPSU

Re: Negative processes in the Karachai-Cherkess Autonomous Region

Summary: Negative phenomena, namely nationalistic, anti-Russian moods, are registered among some of the populace of the Karachai-Cherkess Autonomous Region, with attendant antisocial manifestations, including criminal offences. Measures are being taken to prevent and suppress them.

Data received by the KGB of the USSR indicate an increasingly negative nationalistic process in certain categories of the populace of the Karachai-Cherkess Autonomous Region, along with a higher crime rate on this basis. Among other factors, this process is facilitated by hostile elements from among the older generation — people who used to take part in the armed struggle against the Soviet regime. By eulogizing past realties, obsolete traditions and habits of their people, these individuals are in every way inciting anti-Soviet moods, in retaliation for the alleged persecution of the Karachais, capitalizing on the fact of their resettlement [i.e., deportation] during the Great Patriotic War in the Central Asian republics.

The persisting tribal and religious vestiges are another negative factor in the situation with the populace. The self-styled mullahs (more than 100 on record) strive to reinforce the Islamic position. In these conditions the reactionary part of the highland emigres are trying to take advantage of contacts with the populace to fuel the fire of interethnic discord, inciting various conflict situations.

Affected by nationalistic ideas, certain representatives of the creative intelligentsia (writers Baimurakov, Batchayev, Kagiyeva, artist Chomayev, etc.) stress in their works the ethnic superiority of the Karachais, eulogizing former traitors to their Fatherland, striving to inspire in the reader and viewer resentment at the allegedly unlawful resettlement.

Laipanov, Abadaliyev, Cherkessov, and other lecturers at the Karachai State Teacher’s Institute have been systematically inciting anti-Russian moods in their milieu.

Similar moods among the youth often turn into undisguised aversion to Russians, along with acts of flagrant hooliganism, rapes, and brawls [continued on next page]


that threaten to turn into riots. Thus, in 1979 alone, the oblast’s law enforcement authorities registered 33 cases of rape involving women of Russian and other nonindigenous ethnic origins. In nine months of this year 22 similar crimes have been perpetrated, along with 36 muggings. These acts are known to have often been accompanied by cynical statements and shouts like, “That’s what’s gonna happen to all Russkies!”, “Fight Russkies!”, “Get out of our land!,” and so on. A considerable part of the above-mentioned crimes are committed in the vicinity of Union and international tourist bases, so that vacationers, including foreigners, are often found among the victims. In 1979, two female tourists from the GDR were gangbanged. One of them died later.

An increasing number of Karachais have been resettling in Kislovodsk over the past several years. The nationalistic elements from among these Karachais regard this city as “our own,” behaving in a defiant manner, terrorizing vacationers, provoking scuffles involving tourists and residents of different ethnic origins.

The presence in this area of spas of all-Union importance, tourist lodges, and military units is regarded by these nationalistic elements as an encroachment on the land which has allegedly been their own for ages, so they are deliberately aggravating relations with their administrations and servicemen [i.e., local military command]. Thus, in 1979, several persons, [subsequently identified as] young residents of the village of Chapayevskoye, armed with bludgeons, fought their way through the checkpoint and onto the grounds of a military unit and proceeded to demand release of a fellow villager who had been detained by the military for hooliganism. The intruders shouted insults at the servicemen and the commanding officer, and threatened acts of violence. In February 1980, a group of young Karachais provoked a brawl with the security detail of a government-owned dacha in the vicinity of Kislovodsk.

Frequent cases of [illicit] esprit de corps and localism are another negative factor in the situation with this oblast. There are numerous cases on record with separate local Karachai functionaries making every effort to get rid of people of different ethnic origin on staff, replacing them with [Karachai] relatives or other like- minded individuals. This situation nurtures frequent abuses of office and other negative social phenomena, encouraging certain individuals to commit crimes and believe they will get off scot-free, while causing local public outcry, calling into question the conduct of separate officials representing local authorities.

Another noteworthy fact is the presence of, and the holding of important posts by, people from previously privileged strata in a number of [government-run] institutions, including the local writers’ union, publishing house, and the local newspapers’ editorial offices.

Under the able guidance of party bodies of the KGB Directorate, Stavropol Krai, measures are being taken to step up struggle against nationalism, to detect and localize such negative phenomena, and to improve the entire situation with the Karachai-Cherkess [Autonomous Region].

Please regard everything stated above as yet another classified information item. (Signed)

Yu. Andropov, Chairman of the Committee

This information is to be forwarded to the Secretaries of the CC CPSU’

[Handwritten instructions, mostly illegible, including “… also to Comrade Savinkin..”It would probable serve a good cause to secure an exchange of ideas. at the CC [CPSU]… [a number of illegible signatures, most likely appended by the CC Secretaries listed above]

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