Staunton, Jan. 1 – Bashkort political émigré Ruslan Gabbasov says that Bashkortostan head Radiy Khabirov is leading a campaign to wipe out memories of national hero Zeki-Velidi Togan and has stooped to using the services of notorious Donbass separatist Maksim Fomin who goes by the name Vladlen Tatarsky.
Earlier, Khabirov, the Moscow-appointed leader of that Middle Volga republic, has failed to silence Russian critics of Togan, has made visits to authoritarian Belarus and exchanged visits with odious leaders of the Donbass aggression, and has even supported a republic court which found service in the Donbass an extenuating circumstance in a criminal case.
Now, Gabbasov says, Khabirov has gone even further, inviting Vladlen Tatarsky – a name that easily expands to “the Tatar Vladimir Lenin” – to present a book about the Donbass in Ufa and then issue a call for renaming a street in the republic capital and the republic library, dropping Togan’s name in favor of someone else (idelreal.org/a/31629475.html).
(On Togan’s role as one of the founders of modern Bashkortostan, see windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2020/12/experience-of-bashkir-republic-founder.html; concerning the recent travails of efforts to honor him, see windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2021/01/a-tale-of-three-statues-in-russia-today.html.)
Bashkorts must recognize, Gabbasov says, that they can’t count on Moscow appointees to support their national heroes. That is something Bashkorts must do on their own. “If we don’t defend their honor,” he continues, “enemies will always find ways and means to cover them in dirt and secure a complete ban on any references to them in the republic.”