Last modified: 2023-07-22 by valentin poposki
Keywords: russian empire | white army civil war | caucasus muslim |
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There was a long history of Russian attempts to gain control over the rich oil resources of the Caucasus, particularly in the regions of Baku, Grozny and Maikop. There were multiple Imperial Russian incursions into the area under the rules of Russian Tsars Alexander I (reigned 1801-1825), Nicholas I (1825-1855), and Alexander II (1855-1881). Naturally the various peoples of the North Caucasus resisted subjugation during these attempts of conquest. A series of military actions were waged by the Russian Imperial Army and their Cossack settlers against these native inhabitants such as the Adyghe, Abaza-Abkhaz, Ubykhs, Chechens, and Dagestanis as the Tsars sought to expand their empire. Added into this mix the Persian, Ottoman, and German Empires were interested in the area, and it is not surprising that a series of conflicts, both large and small, took place among the interested parties. In the end the Russians were victorious forcing many people native to the area to emigrate and leave their homelands. Hundreds of thousands perished during this time, and the Caucasus was left with a long legacy of hatred on all sides.
During 1917 as the Russian Revolution and subsequent Civil War proceeded it is not surprising that warfare broke out between the Czarist White Russians living in the Caucasus and the newly hatched Bolshevik Red Army. In January of 1918 the Bolsheviks signed the Ottoman-Russian Friendship Treaty and a special decree on Armenia was passed by Lenin and Stalin which armed and repatriated over 100,000 Armenians from the former Tsar's Army. These fresh Red troops were sent to the Caucasus to stop any further Ottoman and German activities in the area. The Ottoman Pasha Talaat's official protest against the Bolsheviks arming Armenian army legions rather summed it up when he said, "the Russian leopard has not changed its spots." All that really happened in the area was the Bolsheviks and Armenians replaced Nikolai Yudenich's White Russian Caucasus Army and business continued as usual...
For further information about these events see: Wikipedia: Caucasian_War.
Pete Loeser, 18 July 2023
image located by William Garrison, 13 April 2014
The Russian White Army Civil War Caucasus Muslim Nationalistic Regimental Flag is 52 cm x 60 cm. All stars and the half moon are embroidered. All letters are gold, as well as gold embroidery around the edges. It was auctioned off and any reference materials can no longer be found; all that remains is this unverified photo.
William Garrison, 13 April 2014