The Caucasian War

The concept of the "Caucasian war" was introduced by the journalist and historian R. Fadeev.

In the history of our country, it means events connected with the annexation of the Mountainous Dagestan, Chechnya and Circassia to the empire.

The Caucasian war lasted 47 years, from 1817 to 1864, and ended with the victory of the Russians, having generated around itself many legends and myths, sometimes very far from reality.

What are the causes of the Caucasian war?

As in all wars - in the redistribution of territories: three powerful powers - Persia, Russia and Turkey - fought for domination over the "gates" from Europe to Asia, that is, over the Caucasus. However, the attitude of the local population was not taken into account at all.

In the early 1800s, Russia was able to defend its rights to Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan from Persia and Turkey, and the peoples of the North and West Caucasus withdrew to it "automatically".

But the mountaineers with their rebellious spirit and love of independence could not reconcile themselves to the fact that Turkey ceded the Caucasus to the king simply as a gift.

The Caucasian war began with the appearance in thisregion of General Yermolov, who suggested that the tsar should proceed to active operations in order to create fortress settlements in mountainous remote areas, where Russian garrisons would be located.

Highlanders fiercely resisted, possessingadvantage of war on its territory. But nevertheless, the losses of the Russians in the Caucasus up to the 30s were several hundred a year, and those were associated with armed speeches.

But then the situation changed dramatically.

In 1834 Shamil became the head of the Muslim mountaineers. It was with him that the Caucasian war took the greatest scale.

Shamil was fighting simultaneously both againstthe tsarist garrisons, and against those feudal lords who recognized the power of the Russians. It was at his command that the only heir of the Avar khanate was killed, and the captured Gamzat-bek treasury made it possible to greatly increase military spending.

In fact, Shamil's main support was murids and local clergy. He repeatedly raided Russian fortresses and defector villages.

However, the Russians responded in the same way: in the summer of 1839 the military expedition seized the residence of the imam, and wounded Shamil managed to move to Chechnya, which became the new arena of military operations.

General Vorontsov, who rose at the head of the tsaristtroops, completely changed the tactics of fighting, stopping expeditions to the mountain villages, which were always accompanied by great material and human losses. Soldiers began cutting down in the forests clearings, erecting fortifications, creating Cossack villages.

And the mountaineers themselves did not trust the imam any more. And in the late 40-ies of the 19th century the territory of the imamate began to decline, as a result of being completely blockaded.

In 1848, the Russians captured one of the strategically important villages - Gergebil, and then Georgian Kakheti. They managed to repulse the attempts of the murids to destroy fortifications in the mountains.

The Imam's despotism, military punishments, repressive policies repelled the mountaineers from the movement of muridism, which only intensified internal confrontation.

The Caucasian War with the End of the Crimean Warpassed to its last stage. The governor and commander of the army was General Baryatinsky, and the future military minister and reformer, Milutin, was the chief of staff.

The Russians moved from offensive to offensive operations. Shamil was cut off from Chechnya in Mountainous Dagestan.

At the same time, Baryatinsky, who knew the Caucasus well,as a result of its fairly active policy for establishing peaceful relations with the mountaineers, soon became very popular in the North Caucasus. Highlanders were inclined to Russian orientation: revolts began everywhere to break out.

By May, 1864, the last center of resistance of the murids had been broken, and Shamil himself surrendered in August.

On this day, the Caucasian War ended, the results of which reap the relics of contemporaries.

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