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From Conquest to DeportationThe North Caucasus under Russian Rule$
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Jeronim Perovic

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190889890

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190889890.001.0001

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Conformity and Rebellion

Conformity and Rebellion

The Case of Khasan Israilov

(p.289) 9 Conformity and Rebellion
From Conquest to Deportation

Jeronim Perović

Oxford University Press

The territory of the Chechen-Ingush ASSR (apart from a small sector at Mozdok) was never occupied by the Germans, and while many of its residents certainly had sympathies with the Germans, there was never wholesale collaboration with the enemy. Nevertheless, the Soviet leadership later added “collaborationism” to the catalogue of accusations used as a pretext to expel the Chechens and other North Caucasians peoples from their homelands. This chapter discusses this tragic, and highly controversial, chapter of North Caucasian history by following the life story of Khasan Israilov, one of the most prominent Chechen rebels who led the anti-Soviet insurgency from 1941 until his death in 1944. The chapter draws to large parts on the unpublished (and to date unknown) diaries of Israilov, which he had ostensibly written during the period 1941–3. These memoirs are among the rare accounts by an anti-Soviet resistance fighter that have survived and show that the path to armed resistance was not foreordained. In order to understand the motivation for Israilov’s choice, the ambiguities of his biography must be taken into account.

Keywords:   World War II, Anti-Soviet rebellions, Resistance, Collaboration, Nazi-Germany, Khasan Israilov, North Caucasus, Chechnia

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