Sunday, June 17, 2018

Kazakhs Founded Moscow, Something Russians have Tried to Hide, Kazakhstan Scholar Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, June 16 – Mekemtas Myrzakhmet, a Kazakh historian, says there is impressive archival evidence that a Kazakh founded the city of Moscow and that the city was even named in his honor, despite all efforts by Russian officials and scholars to deny this and to destroy the documents that prove this.

            “Truth sooner or later enters the arena of history,” he writes, even if some try to hide it.   “Moscow was ruled in 1088 by a youth named Akhat Moska. The local people loved him and named the city in his honor. Thus, the capital of the Russian empire was named as a mark of respect for a Kazakh” ( and

                Evidence for this, Myrzakhmet says, is even now circulating in academic circles and will soon lead Kazakhs to speak openly about that historical truth.  Akhat Moska was married to a Russian woman, and “the Russians aren’t going to rush to share with us such information.” Indeed, he suggests, they will do everything to hide it.

            “At present,” the historian says, “we must more deeply study the heritage of the great Abay and escape from a slavish consciousness. Indicative of what is going on is that documents concerning us are being destroyed in the Russian archives. Soviet power didn’t allow the Kazakhs to raise their national self-consciousness and held the Kazakh people under its control.”

            But now things have changed, Myrzakhmet continues. “We are a people with pure blood, great intellectual potential and a broad range of views.”  We even established what is now Russia’s capital, he implies, and eventually the Russians will have to acknowledge that. 

            For centuries, there have been disputes about where the name Moscow came from and who founded the city. The most common conjectures are that it is a Finno-Ugric name and that the city was founded by groups who lived in the region before the people who came to be known as the Russians ever arrived.

            Myrzakhmet’s suggestion is a relatively new one, but it is certain to spark controversy. At the very least, it is an indication of the growing national self-consciousness of the Kazakhs and their willingness to challenge Russian nationalist and imperial thinking, something many in Moscow will take the most extreme umbrage at. 

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