The process of socialist and national construction in Kazakhstan and Central Asia. Current conclusions

Ainur Kurmanov, co-Chairman of the Socialist movement of Kazakhstan

A notable difference between socialist construction in Kazakhstan and Central Asia is that it took place in a society where there were a lot of pre-capitalist ways, both feudal and ancestral communities. This peculiarity of the weak development of capitalist relations left its mark on the further policy of the Soviet state, which followed the path of creating new nations and autonomous republican entities in such conditions.

In fact, these suburbs of the former Russian Empire, thanks to the October revolution, jumped through the capitalist phase of development, immediately falling into the socialist system. And there is nothing in this that contradicts the Bolshevik program aimed at modernizing the country on a new basis.

The victorious working class, through its state, pursued a civilizing policy, not just pulling the backward regions of the Eastern and Asian regions of the country to the level of its European part, but creating new industrial and agricultural areas there, building hundreds of cities, thousands of towns, schools, hospitals and universities, stretching railways and building power plants there. Neighboring Mongolia has also undergone the same civilizing development.

Even now, after the restoration of capitalism and the catastrophic destruction of the USSR, the former Soviet republics of Central Asia have not experienced a final setback. In the present independent states, there are still some gains, enterprises and cities, as well as education and cultural foundations that give hope to future generations in the time of a new revolutionary crisis to use past experience for revival and further development.

Our task is to analyze the processes of national and state building that took place at that time within the framework of general socialist development and give our assessment of that period, in order to use this experience and expose the liberal and nationalist myths about that period.

Establishment of Soviet power in Central Asia and the first Turkestan Soviet Republic

Kazakhstan and Central Asia were remote backward and peripheral regions of the Russian Empire, where if Russian and English capital penetrated, it was for the purpose of raw material exploitation of the region for the export of minerals: lead, zinc, gold, bauxite and cotton. To some extent, the industrial areas of East Kazakhstan and Turkestan region with the center in Tashkent developed.

Especially difficult was the situation of the indigenous peoples inhabiting these territories, who suffered from double oppression, both from Russian and foreign capital and the tsarist administration, and from their feudal bai elite. We should not forget that in the territory of modern Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, in addition to the Turkestan territory, the Khorezm Kaganate (Khiva) and the Bukhara Emirate existed as protectorates of the Russian monarchy.

Despite the fact that all residents of the region were Russian citizens, inequality was manifested in everything, both in the class division and belonging to a religious denomination, as well as in privileges and receiving wages. For example, before the revolution of 1917 in the Syrdarya region of Turkestan, the Russian proletarian was paid 90 kopecks a day for the same work in production, the Uzbek – 86 kopecks, and the Kazakh and Kyrgyz – 69 kopecks. In other words, under tsardom, Kazakhs were considered of the low-class people [1], not even of the second class.

It is also well known that the tsarist regime drove the Kazakhs from the best lands. Only for the period from 1890 to 1915, about 20 million hectares were taken from them. And in the ten years leading up to world war I (1903-1912), the Kazakh population, which was then called Kyrgyz, declined by 9 percent. In 1916, during the uprising of the Kazakhs and Kirghiz against mobilization for rear work, the local population also faced punitive expeditions of the tsarist troops.

The Great October socialist revolution of 1917 immediately changed the way of life and the class balance of power in Kazakhstan and Central Asia. And after the establishment of Soviet power, the Bolsheviks began a discussion about the construction of new state Autonomous entities on a Republican basis. Although the very process of the formation of Soviet power and the first socialist transformations in the Turkestan and Steppe region took place in a difficult situation, in a tense internal political struggle between supporters and opponents of socialism.

The Bolshevik party of Turkestan, supported by the Red guard and revolutionary soldiers of the military garrisons of Tashkent, Verny (now Almaty), Ashgabat, Perovsk (now Kzyl-Orda), Aulieata (now Taraz) and other cities, suppressed the counter-revolutionary actions of armed detachments of the local bourgeoisie and muslim reactionary clergy, official circles of the old colonial administration. By the spring of 1918, the struggle for power in the Turkestan region was mostly over, and a new social system was established in the form of Soviets of workers', soldiers', and muslim deputies.

On April 30, 1918, the 5th Regional Congress of Soviets of Turkestan opened in Tashkent. Along with delegates from the regions, 120 representatives of the local indigenous population – Uzbeks, Kazakhs, Turkmens and Tajiks-took part in its work. The main report on the tasks of the Bolsheviks in implementing national policy in the region was made by the extraordinary Commissioner of the Central Committee of the RCP (b) and the SNK of the RSFSR for Central Asia P. A. Kobozev.

The Congress decided to create the Turkestan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (TASSR) as part of the RSFSR. A telegram to Moscow assured that "all revolutionary slogans will be firmly and steadily carried out here in Turkestan" [2]. The Creation of the TASSR fit into the principle of territorial autonomy long defended by the Bolsheviks. Specifically, the TASSR was not associated with any specific titular ethnic group, but was a specific economic and geographical unit with a multi-ethnic population.

Thus, the first step of the Bolsheviks towards the autonomy of the region was made, which became an invaluable experience of Soviet construction and the basis for the formation of new Soviet republics in Central Asia in the future.

Already in 1919, with a sharp change in the policy of the Bolsheviks to adopt an ethno-federal system for Soviet Russia, it was also necessary to review the principles of the territorial structure of the TASSR. On January 15, 1920, the Turkestan Commission adopted a resolution proposing the administrative regrouping of Turkestan in accordance with the ethnographic and economic conditions of the region. It identified three main groups of people that could become the basis for new ethnopolitical units in the TASSR: Uzbeks, Kazakhs, and Turkmens.

At that time, a discussion developed within the RCP (b) between the two main visions for the further development of Soviet autonomization. The first was based on the formation of a centralized Federation, in which all the subjects that emerged in the course of 1917-1920 were to enter as autonomies, followed by division into large economic regions. National and cultural autonomies can develop within such regions. According to one of these projects, in particular, it was supposed to form two large regions on the territory of the KASSR - with centers in Orenburg and Semipalatinsk. Turkestan and the Caucasus were to become unified regions.

The second option assumed, on the contrary, the active implementation of the principles of national-state autonomy, to some extent continuing the policy that gave independence to the Western suburbs of the Russian Empire in the face of Finland, Poland and the Baltic republics. The model also had two "branches": first, the foreign policy of expansion to join the Soviet Confederation of the future Soviet republics of the East and West, and second, the division of the RSFSR into European and Asian republics, built, according to the authors, on the principles of pan - Islamism and pan-Turkism.

It was even supposed to create a Muslim Communist party within the RCP (b), which for a short period from 1918 -1919 was created on the basis of Muslim sections of the party, and, as an option, a separate Turan SSR, including Kazakhstan, Turkestan, Bashkiria, Tatarstan and other turkic-speaking regions of the former Empire.

According to the Kazakh historian Daniyar Ashimbayev, such a "pan-Turkist" option was impossible and even contradicted the program guidelines of the Bolsheviks, and also contributed to the strengthening of Islamism in the region, which could eventually undermine the position of the Soviet government.

"This model was in fundamental contradiction with the internationalist principles of the Communists, could stimulate not so much Soviet construction as the growth of religious sentiment, and was too much in line with the geopolitical interests of Turkey, which it promoted both itself and in Alliance with Germany. In any case, the national policy of the RCP (b) was built on complex trade-offs between these models. And if the Caucasus Transcaucasian socialist Federative Soviet Republic was established with the aim of dealing with the local nationalism and the suppression of hot spot in Abkhazia, Karabakh and South Ossetia, that Turkestan in the years 1924-1925. it was divided because of the contradictions between the peoples who inhabited it, the growth of local - Kazakh, Uzbek, Kyrgyz, Tajik, Turkmen - nationalism, and the possibility of creating new Soviet Nations to undermine the ideological foundations of pan-Turkism and pan-Islamism in the region" [3], writes Daniyar Ashimbayev.

This is why, in his opinion, the Soviet government decided to translate the alphabets of the Asian peoples of the USSR into Latin in order "not only to introduce a westernized alphabet in the interests of the future global Soviet country, but also to break cultural and historical ties with the former heritage, primarily Arabic and Turkish" [4].

Therefore, by the end of 1919 and the beginning of 1920, the party finally chose the path of creating new Soviet Nations and, accordingly, national-state autonomies in the Turkestan and Steppe region of Central Asia.

The Bolshevik policy of assistance in Soviet nation-building and the movement to the East

Despite the fact that the RCP (b) adopted the line of creating national Soviet republics, there were a lot of problems during its implementation, as two extreme trends were identified. On the one hand, the so-called great-power sentiments began to appear among the part of the party apparatus that underestimated the process of nation-building, and on the other, local Soviet "nationalists"appeared.

There was another more radical and incorrect approach, which was associated with a complete denial of the need to involve Russians, Ukrainians and other Soviet workers of European nationalities in the development of the region. This opinion was expressed, in particular, by the famous Kazakh revolutionary and head of the Turkestan Council of People's Commissars Turar Ryskulov. However, his calls to recall all Communists "infected with colonization" from Turkestan and rely solely on local personnel did not find support among the members of the Turkcomission. Moreover, the implementation of his calls was impossible, as it would lead to a complete collapse of Soviet policy in the region.

To Lenin's credit, he had a much more sensitive approach to this issue. The USSR was originally founded as a Union of 4 equal States in December 1922. At this stage, Turkestan (mainly present – day Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and southern Kazakhstan) and the Kazakh ASSR (present-day Northern and Central Kazakhstan) remained autonomous republics within the RSFSR, while the Bukhara and Khorezm republics remained independent States.

Most importantly, the Bolshevik approach was strictly and fundamentally aimed at helping the development of national States. Ethnic groups and nationalities, of which there were more than 130 on the territory of the entire former Russian Empire, received their own territories with a certain degree of autonomy. Assistance was provided in the development of the national language, local teachers were trained, and national schools were founded. Representatives of indigenous peoples have been appointed to administrative and party posts in the course of the "korenization" policy (indigenous policy).

In 1920, as a result of the operation of the Red Army, prepared by Frunze, and the uprising of the masses in Bukhara and Khiva, monarchies were abolished and new people's Soviet republics were formed.

A striking example in this practice is the formation of the Khorezm people's Soviet Republic on the territory of present-day Turkmenistan. The RSFSR renounced all claims and rights to the territory, recognized the full independence of Khorezm, and offered a voluntary economic and military alliance and assistance in economic and cultural development, including education and literacy. All property, land and use rights that previously belonged to the Russian government, Russian citizens and Russian companies were transferred to the new government of Khorezm without any compensation. Work has begun on opening new schools for children and adults and the first Khorezm national University. Carried out repairs of canals, construction of bridges and the extension of the telegraph network.

Even in the case of the question of religion, Lenin's approach was not to oppose religion as such, but to side with those who suffered from its reactionary influence. This was especially true for women. Polygamy, bride-buying, and divorce on a man's unilateral initiative were outlawed. Women-oriented schools were established and women were encouraged to participate in public life. Assistance was provided to establish textile cooperatives so that women could become economically independent.

However, the destruction of the Bukhara Emirate and the Khorezm (Khiva) khanate and the creation of people's Soviet republics on their basis had their own foreign policy reasons for the need to spread the world revolution to the East. There are documents of correspondence between Mikhail Frunze and Vladimir Lenin, the leadership of the RCP (b) and the Turkestan ASSR, which linked the outcome of the operation in Bukhara and from the point of view of the military and political situation in the Muslim world. Since the creation of new Soviet republics was supposed to contribute to the successful development of Bolshevik policy in Persia, Turkey, Afghanistan and the situation in Xinjiang.

In this sense, Soviet Turkestan and the newly formed people's Soviet republics in Bukhara and Khiva became a convenient springboard for transferring the world revolution through Afghanistan, where a regime friendly to Soviet Russia was established, to the territory of India in order to fight Britain. In addition, the Soviet republics among the Muslim population of Central Asia was a very important propaganda weapon for awakening the peoples of the East in order to destroy the colonial periphery of empires. It is no accident that the first Congress of the peoples of the East, initiated by the Comintern, was held in Baku from September 1 to 10.

The formation of the Kazakh (Kirghiz) ASSR

Kazakh bourgeois nationalists from the cadet party branch, who stuttered about autonomy, have since the civil war unequivocally sided with the counter-revolution and the white armies. This is primarily about the Alash party, the Kazakh branch of the cadet party. November 5, 1919 The revolutionary military Council, signed by commander M. Frunze, declared an Amnesty for Alash-Orda, freeing all former armed opponents from responsibility. In 1920. Alash-Orda became part of the Kyrgyz (Kazakh) revolutionary government with the loss of all its previously adopted laws, and as such, the party ended its existence. From this moment, the history of Soviet Kazakhstan and the formation of an Autonomous Republic within the RSFSR begins.

August 26 marks 100 years since the formation of the Kazakh Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, the decree about which creation was signed by Chairman of people's Commissars Vladimir Lenin and Chairman of the Central Executive Committee Mikhail Kalinin. It was the Bolsheviks who were at the origins of the creation of the Kazakh Soviet national statehood.

In late 1918 – early 1920, intensive preparatory work was underway to form the Kazakh Soviet autonomy. On July 10, 1919, the Kazakh revolutionary Committee (Kazrevkom) was formed to manage the region. During the Civil war, Kazrevkom concentrated the highest civil-military power in its hands. An important task of the Kazrevkom was to form the territorial integrity of the future Kazakh Soviet A utonomy.

Even earlier, the Turkestan region of the former Russian Empire became the Turkestan Autonomous Socialist Soviet Republic in 1918 with its capital in Tashkent, which included the Dzhetysu (Semirechye) and Syrdarya regions. But as a result of the victory of the Bolsheviks in the civil war, the question of the formation of a separate Kazakh Soviet Republic became an edge.

On August 26, 1920, the Decree on the formation of the Kazakh Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic came into effect. On October 4, 1920, the Constituent Congress of the KazASSR Soviets was held in Orenburg. The Congress adopted the "Declaration of workers ' rights of KazASSR". The Declaration served as the Constitution. It secured broad political rights for the workers of Kazakhstan. Orenburg was declared the capital of the Autonomous region.

National disengagement of 1924-1925

Some party officials, who came from indigenous peoples, for example, proposed to unite the Turkestan, Bukhara and Khorezm republics into a single Federation, similar to the Federation of the RSFSR. However, this proposal was rejected. The very idea of creating national republics for Uzbeks and Turkmens was questioned by a number of local figures, since, in their opinion, there were no such Nations, and the introduction of such categories would be an artificial act.

Despite such sentiments, as a result of the victorious line to create national republics, at the end of April 1924, The Central Bureau of the RCP (b) formed a special Commission, which appointed Turkmen, Uzbek and Kazakh sub-commissions to represent the interests of their respective communities.

"The Kremlin's initiative to unite Uzbek localities in Central Asia into a single Uzbek national Republic was not positively received by the Soviet Uzbek elites in the TASSR and KHSSR. The only Uzbek political group that fully supported the project of an Uzbek national state in the Kremlin from the very beginning was the Soviet Bukhara leadership under the guidance of Fayzulla Khodjaev. The Uzbek project of the Kremlin was largely supported by party activists in Tashkent, " writes historian Grigor Ubiria [5].

The purpose of the planned delimitation was not to create ethnically homogeneous political units, but to ensure that in each newly formed Republic and region, the titular nationality would constitute a numerical majority. The national principle was to be the guiding criterion for the territorial Commission to determine the projected inter-Republic borders in Central Asia.

During the creation of the new Soviet Nations, there were constant problems and disputes both over territories and over the belonging of certain ethnic groups.

However, the Commission also had to take into account socio-economic principles. During the implementation of national delimitation, there was also an economic division, i.e. factories, agricultural areas, livestock and cultural and educational institutions were divided between the former republics in such a way that after the division each of them had sufficient material resources necessary for successful economic and cultural development.

The result of the national delimitation in 1924-25 there were some Uzbek SSR, Turkmen SSR, and Karakalpak Autonomous oblast (c 1930 the Karakalpak ASSR), Kara-Kirghiz AO (from 25 may 1925 renamed Kirghiz AO, and from February 1, 1926 was converted to a separate Kirghiz SSR) and Tajik SSR. Two regions of the abolished Turkestan Soviet Republic were assigned to the Kazakh ASSR. Accordingly, in 1924, the Bukhara and Khorezm Soviet republics ceased to exist, the territories of which became part of the Turkmen ASSR, the Karakalpak Autonomous region, the Uzbek ASSR and the Tajik ASSR.

Subsequently, the status of these republics also increased. Thus, since 1925, Uzbekistan has received the status of an independent Soviet Republic, where the Karakalpak ASSR became an Autonomous Republic in 1936. In the same year, the Turkmen SSR received this status. In 1929, the Tajik SSR was formed. In 1936, the Kazakh SSR and the Kyrgyz SSR became separate Union republics. Just this year, in connection with the adoption of the new Stalin Constitution, the five Union Soviet republics of Central Asia were finally formed.

This national division, which led to the creation of new Soviet nationalities and, consequently, Union and Autonomous republics, is a direct consequence of the Lenin's national policy of the Bolsheviks and was subordinated to the goal of socialist construction.

The theme of the famine of 1932-1933 in the Kazakh ASSR

Kazakhstan now, as well as Ukraine, is characterized by the theme of the famine of the early 30s, which is actively used by government bourgeois propaganda, liberals and nationalists in order to present the Bolsheviks as the organizers of a targeted genocide of the indigenous people. When analyzing national and socialist construction in Central Asia, it is impossible to avoid this topic, and it is necessary to give an answer to this.

Famine as a policy of extermination of the Kazakhs is attributed by modern nationalists to the entire Soviet state from its very Foundation and to Lenin directly, although he was together with Kalinin the initiator of the formation of the Kazakh Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in August 1920. And, in their opinion, the policy of genocide allegedly lasted from the moment after the end of the civil war, until 1933. Clearly, the customers overdid the dates and dates and tried to directly link and connect the famine of 1921, caused by the drought, with the famine of 1932-33.

Modern decommunizers operate only with figures signed by the head of the regional party organization Goloshchekin about the relocation of 5-10 thousand dispossessed families of bais, 400 people-nomadic farms, 300 — semi-nomadic, 150-settled. But no millions of deaths are mentioned or reported anywhere in the statistics. Nor is there a single document signed by Stalin and Goloshchekin that prescribes killing or starving ethnic Kazakhs. On the contrary, the cited documents always emphasize the clear class separation of the bais-feudal elite from the main mass of people who were mercilessly exploited by the oppressors.

However, it was the removal of livestock, in fact, from the feudal elite that caused the mass migration of Bai farms along with a number of auls to neighboring China. At that time, several million heads of cattle with a population migrated abroad in just one year of collectivization. In fact, this mass migration across the conditional border, as well as uncontrolled slaughtering of livestock by the owners inside the country, led all together to starvation. The situation was aggravated by the implementation of a forced policy of settlement, when permanent settlements were created, and the Kazakhs broke away from nomadic farming.

All this was caused by excesses and mistakes in the policy of collectivization, which were condemned by the party and the Soviet government back in the 30s. Naturally, there have never been any installations for the targeted destruction of Kazakhs or Ukrainians. Also, demographic estimates of losses during the famine do not stand up to criticism, when figures from 3 to 5 million people are called without any statistics.

Some nationalists claim that if it were not for the "Holodomor", 90 million Kazakhs would live in Kazakhstan, which is clearly an anti-scientific profanation and is embroidered according to Ukrainian patterns. The theme of genocide is also shattered by the fact that it was the Bolsheviks who formed a separate Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic in 1936 within its current borders. Why did they need to create another Union Republic, if their goal was the total destruction of the Kazakhs?

The Soviet government in Moscow tried and provided widespread aid in 1932-33 to the starving regions of Ukraine, the Volga region, the Urals, and Kazakhstan, but it was sometimes used ineffectively or incorrectly by local party and economic personnel in the steppe region. The Soviet press also wrote about these facts when they revealed the facts of using the bread received from the center for other needs or even to help their relatives, and not to support the population of famine-affected villages.

Therefore, such data indicate the low quality of a certain part of the managers of the KASSR at the grass-roots level, who were unable to cope with the gaps and establish collective forms of ownership at the time of the sharp transformation of agriculture caused by collectivization and the creation of permanent settled settlements. Accordingly, we must consider all this as inevitable mistakes and excesses in the process of accelerated socialist construction, which arose as a result of the radical breakdown of the entire millennial way of life and nomadic economy.

As for the famine of 1921 and Lenin's involvement in it, the facts show a completely different picture, when the head of the RSFSR, torn by the civil war, was able to find ways to support the inhabitants of the steppe region.

Then, in order to help the starving population of the Kazakh ASSR, the decree of the Central Executive Committee exempted the population of poor-yielding areas from paying the food tax. On June 14, 1921, V. I. Lenin signed the decree "on natural meat tax", according to which the nomadic and semi-nomadic Kazakh peasantry was exempt from meat tax. In 1922, 25 million rubles were allocated for the purchase of agricultural machinery and tools, seeds were released to sow 60% of the sown area, 2,131 thousand rubles were allocated for the purchase of livestock, 575 orphanages and 9 orphanages were organized, and about 18.5 thousand were evacuated to the RSFSR children's. The People's Commissar of social security KASSR initiated the organization of peasant committees of mutual assistance [6].

In General, despite the famines of 1921 and 1932-33, the Soviet system survived, and these problems themselves, the first related to drought, and the second to forced collectivization, were directly a factor of extreme backwardness and very low productivity of the agricultural sector, which needed to be modernized on a scientific and collective basis with the consolidation of small farms. This was achieved in the following years of socialist construction and permanently eliminated the problem of hunger, previously directly related to climatic periods.

Industrialization of Kazakhstan

The political transformation of society in Central Asia and Kazakhstan in the 20s after the October socialist revolution was extremely progressive and was centuries ahead of the archaic economic basis of the entire region, which under the NEP (new economic policy) remained backward with numerous pre-capitalist structures. For example, in 1926, Kazakhstan, unlike the European part of the RSFSR, managed to restore only 60% of the pre-war level of the economy in 1913, and a significant part of the livestock and land were controlled by a small percentage of bais and kulaks who rose as a result of market relations.

This new social machine needed a powerful modern engine, which moved it further to unprecedented social achievements and modernization of backward regions. It was necessary to make a radical change in the methods of production, with the need to concentrate all productive forces in the hands of a centralized state under a single planned leadership. Such a new tool or engine could only be the industrialization of the USSR with the associated collectivization of agriculture, which is long overdue. For Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, the goal was also to introduce settlement for nomadic farms, which completely changed the way of farming.

The adoption and implementation of the first accelerated five-year plan, and then the second, was a continuation and new impulse of the socialist revolution, since it not only created new industry and entire industrial areas, but also completely destroyed the forms of private property that remained in the country since the NEP. The first five-year plans, of course, economically and socially transformed the steppe region beyond recognition, creating completely new industries, a new working class and urban culture.

First of all, a large complex of works was carried out on the final transfer of the Republic's agriculture to the rails of socialism. Via TOZ and Mulserctics (Association for the cultivation of the land) of the Kazakh peasants moved to collective farm. More than 500 thousand Kazakh nomadic and semi-nomadic farms have moved to settlement. In 1937, by the end of the second five-year plan, the collective farms of Kazakhstan United 97.5% of the country's farms, they processed 99.8% of the acreage and produced 84.4% of the gross grain harvest. In collective farms and state farms, other state and cooperative enterprises, as well as in the personal property of collective farmers, there were about 99% of livestock [7].

The coal industry was rapidly developed, 90% of the production of which in 1940 was accounted for by the Karaganda basin, which became the third after the Donbass and Kuzbass coal Stoker of the USSR. Kazakhstan ranked third in oil production (after Russia and Azerbaijan). The chemical industry also developed rapidly.

Electricity production in the Republic has increased by 486 times compared to 1913. Significant progress has been made in the light and food industries. Another feature of the industrial development of Kazakhstan during this period was the prominence of heavy industry, transport, especially railway, along with non-ferrous metallurgy, oil, coal and other mainly extractive industries.

In 1928-1940, the railway network of the Republic increased by almost 50% and reached 6581 km. The Turkestan-Siberian railway was built, connecting Siberia with Central Asia, and the main sections of the TRANS-Kazakhstan highway, which played a major role in the development of the natural resources of Central Kazakhstan. All these transport lines connected the regions of the Republic with Orenburg And other industrially developed regions of Russia [8].

Higher than the all-Union pace of industrialization laid the Foundation for eliminating economic inequality in the previously backward national republics of the Soviet East. The industrial development of Kazakhstan at such a high rate became possible only thanks to the comprehensive assistance of Russia, Ukraine and other industrialized republics of the Soviet Union. This assistance has taken a wide scope and various forms.

The industrial development of Kazakhstan in 1926-1940 had a number of major socio-economic consequences, which primarily include its transformation from agricultural to industrial-agricultural, the growth of cities and the proportion of citizens in the population of the Republic and the formation of the working class, especially its national cadres, the beginning of the creation of engineering and technical intelligentsia, as well as other socio-demographic changes in the population.

Industry became the predominant branch of the economy of Kazakhstan, the share of its products in the mid-30s began to prevail and in 1939 reached 58.9% against 41.1% of agricultural products. A powerful industrial potential was created and rapidly developed, which gradually occupied the leading positions in the Soviet Union: Kazakhstan took the second place in the production of non—ferrous metals, the third—in coal and oil production, and the fifth-in electricity generation. All this allowed it to become one of the major arsenals of the Soviet Union during the great Patriotic war of 1941-1945. Almost from scratch, from 1926 to 1940, a completely new industrial district was created in the face of Soviet Kazakhstan [9].

Now the current authorities and nationalists are trying to belittle the significance of these unprecedented epochal changes. In particular, the press and pseudo-documentaries seriously claim that the cause of the famine was the lack of industrialization in the country, while during the first five-year plans, such giants as "Balkhashtsvetmet" (mining and processing of non-ferrous metals), where Dinmukhamed Kunaev began his career in 1936, Karaganda industrial district, industrial area of the East Kazakhstan region, lead-zinc plant in Shymkent, several dozen new cities appeared from scratch. During the great Patriotic war, thousands of factories were evacuated to Kazakhstan, for example, the same Lugansk locomotive plant, and now the Almaty heavy engineering plant.

Further socialist development of Kazakhstan continued after the victory of the Soviet people in the great Patriotic war. The long-term head of the Kazakh SSR Dinmukhamed Kunayev, during his speech at the Academy of Sciences of Kazakhstan in 1992, said that in the period from 1955 to 1986 alone, "seven new Kazakhs" were created, in terms of production. During this period, the national income grew seven times, agriculture seven times, 42 new cities were built from scratch, 56 Universities were opened. The number of ethnic Kazakhs has grown from two and a half million to seven million.

Settlement, despite the first mistakes and excesses, also became a boon for the Kazakh people, and not vice versa, as liberals and nationalists try to imagine. Urbanization, permanent settlements, the cultural revolution in the form of universal education, the creation of a system of medical care, their own alphabet and writing, women's emancipation, the emergence of national literature and art – these are all indisputable achievements of the Soviet period, which are now being successfully outlived by the current "elite".

The transformations of the 20-30s, on the contrary, pulled the Kazakh people, like all backward peoples, out of the feudal and even pre-feudal way of life and centuries-old archaic vegetation. Now they are trying to distort this period and present it in a completely different way in order to transform the consciousness of young people and create a nationalistic support for the existing government.

Of course, we cannot say that the entire period of socialist construction in Kazakhstan and the Central Asian republics was straightforward and without mistakes. Many problems began to accumulate in the economy after the Kosygin reforms. They continued Nikita Khrushchev's earlier policy of partially decentralizing the management of enterprises and "expanding independence" by introducing a profitability and profit indicator for the latter, more freedom at the disposal of the latter, freeing or softening a number of planned indicators set by Gosplan, as well as personal incentives for employees.

All this created the basis for various market illusions and conscious proposals to "reform" socialism on the part of individual groups, with the aim of gradually dismantling the planned economy and introducing private capitalist elements. These tendencies were especially strongly developed during the period of perestroika and at the end of the Soviet Union, when part of the party leadership began to persist in implementing measures that directly contradicted the socialist concept of the country's development.

An analysis of the causes of the counter-revolutionary processes of the 80's and their consequences for the republics of Central Asia requires a separate article.


1. Now a number of critics of socialist construction in the USSR claim that the creation of national republics and Soviet nationalities was a mistake and even an" atomic bomb " laid in the Foundation of the state. This is extremely incorrect, since Soviet nation-building after the collapse of the Russian Empire was the most correct way. It allowed the peoples to unite in an equal Union through the creation of their own state formations, in which they could move towards the creation of a new classless society.

This way excluded any colonial oppression and enslavement, raised backward peoples to a completely new level, allowed them to develop freely and created conditions for unprecedented civilizing work. National division, the creation of new national Soviet republics in general only consolidated the state, created additional support in the suburbs, which made an incredible leap in cultural, economic and social development.

It was not the national question that was central to the disintegration of the United country in the late 80's and early 90's, but the inter-ethnic conflicts themselves began to manifest themselves precisely during the period of strengthening of general counter-revolutionary processes in the center and in the field. They were overlaid with the aspirations of a part of the party elite to gain greater independence and independence within the framework of the launched mechanism of restoration of capitalism.


2. Some argue, in support of the first thesis, that Lenin and Stalin allegedly randomly drew the borders of the Soviet republics, attaching entire regions to certain artificial formations. A detailed analysis of the national division of the 20s also shows that when forming territorial borders, broad commissions were formed, local population was surveyed, and even a vote was held on the inclusion of a particular locality or nation in the newly created Republic.

Borders in Central Asia were the product of population censuses at the end of the tsarist era and the early Soviet period, research by ethnographers and orientalists, and, in part, the process of zoning – the formation of supposedly rational and viable territorial-economic units, and ensuring that each new territorial entity met the minimum criteria that would allow it to then become a true Soviet Socialist Republic. The criteria included parameters such as a population of at least one million people and a capital with access to the railway.

This is radically different from the way Western imperialists cut the borders of colonies and new States in Africa, Latin America, and the Arab East, where straight lines were drawn without taking into account local and national characteristics. Even after almost 30 years of independent states in the former Soviet Central Asia, we are not seeing any massive bloody conflicts, with the exception of the pogroms of Uzbeks in the Kyrgyz city of Osh in July 2010. Despite the existence of water, land and energy contradictions, they have not yet turned into interstate conflicts.


3. Other "leftists" among such voluntary or involuntary supporters of G.Plekhanov claim that socialism in the backward Russian Empire was impossible to build a priori and point to Central Asia and Kazakhstan as an example. Allegedly, there was no capitalism at all and there were even feudal and pre-feudal ways.

This thesis also does not stand up to criticism under the pressure of real historical and economic achievements made in the course of the civilizing work carried out by the Soviet government in relation to backward regions. After all, the period of industrialization showed that with the support of more economically developed regions of Russia and Ukraine, unprecedented transformations can be carried out in Central Asia, Kazakhstan and Siberia, raising them to the same level of development, using the mechanisms of a planned economy and centralized management.

This unprecedented breakthrough in socio-economic, political and cultural development of the backward areas, which allowed the peoples of Central Asia immediately to step through the capitalist period of development, shows a real example and the ability to make such methods a lift backward countries in the world in case of victory of the socialist revolution and to overcome one of the major contradictions – the problem of uneven development. 

[1] Асанов Болат. «Ленин, казахи и Казахстан: мысли накануне юбилея».

[2] Алибек С.Н. ИЗ ИСТОРИИ СОВЕТСКОЙ ВЛАСТИ НА ЮГЕ КАЗАХСТАНА В 1917-1927гг.. Журнал: Научные ведомости Белгородского государственного университета. Серия: История. Политология. 2009. С 181.

[3] Ашимбаев Д. Тезисы выступления на международной научной конференции "100 лет Великой Октябрьской социалистической революции".

[4] Ашимбаев Д. Там же…

[5] UBIRIA G. Soviet nation-building in central Asia. The making of the Kazakh and Uzbek nations. – New York; London: Routledge, 2016. – 172 p.

[6] Голод 1921—1922 годов и его последствия. Источник:

[7] Казахстан в годы индустриализации: цели и методы индустриализации. Источник:

[8] Казахстан в годы индустриализации: цели и методы индустриализации. Источник:

[9] Индустриальное развитие Казахстана в 1921-1940 гг. Источник: