22 September 2003, 15:32

Chechen intellectuals discussed preservation of their nation in globalized world

More than 40 Chechen intellectuals met in Grozny on September 19 to discuss how best to preserve their nation in the era of globalization.

University lecturers, writers, journalists and public figures took part in a round-table, "Chechnya in the 21st century: How To Preserve the Nation in a Globalized World," which was organized by the Chechen Cultural Center "Lam". "Our goal is not to find a ready solution, which probably doesn't exist, but to depict the problems that may emerge in our republic and offer proposals aimed at avoiding them," stated political scientist Edilbek Khasmagomedov.

The participants voiced various solutions to the problems such as: forming the unity based on the common language, isolationism, shifting attention from Russia to the Caucasus, revitalizing the economy, and establishing strong financial groups in Chechnya.

Baret Nanayeva, a lecturer at the Grozny Oil Institute, said that Chechens must form an elite. "It is they who determine a nation," believes Nanayeva. "During the Soviet era we had the elite around which Chechen society consolidated; now it is lost," she added.

Poetess Lula Zhumalayeva disagreed with Nanayeva. "Even if the elite had existed, it was marginal. Actually, we need a national idea that will "cement" the Chechens," she thinks.

Ethnographer Said Magomed Khasiyev agreed with Zhumalayeva, "We didn't have the elite either under the Tsars or during the period of deportation. The Chechen nation is egonistic, like the ancient societies of Sparta and Athens. But while in Athens they survived thanks to culture, in Sparta they made a name for themselves via death. And the Chechen society now lives according to the Spartan example."

"In all of Europe only Chechnya views death not as the Grim Reaper but as the "beauty", which comes solely to the selected ones, Khasiyev elaborated. So the Chechens' salvation rests in changing the Spartan model to the Athenian one."

"Globalization is a natural process; and only those societies that become more technological have a future," he added.

"Actually they fear us," stated Nadirsolt Elsunkayev, a director of the Humanitarian Research Center. In his opinion, there are three nations - German, Japan and Chechen ones - that pose a threat to the US style of globalization.

"In order to survive Chechens need to boost their administrative system. The crooks being now in power are unable to lead the republic. Therefore, the leadership needs moral supervision, i.e. the intellectuals must come to power," holds Elsunkayev.

Author: Timur Aliyev, CK correspondent; Source: Prague Watchdog

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