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Crimean Tatars had just ended their Friday prayers and were rounded up en masse. With no suggestion that anybody was suspected of an offence, the raid, by men with machine guns, can only be called an overt attempt to terrorize Crimean Muslims. This is not the first such act of primitive intimidation, with at least one of the previous occasions making it quite clear that the Russian occupation regime is targeting Crimean Tatars in general.

Source: Russia steps up terror offensive with armed raid on mosque in Occupied Crimea :: khpg.org – Reported May 7, 2016.

Commentary

The above cited article will go on to note the following: “Attacks on people who have just left Friday prayers is both intimidation and part of the mounting campaign by Russia as occupying force to treat Crimean Tatars as ‘extremists’. / 10 Crimean Muslims are currently in detention facing ‘terrorism’ charges for alleged involvement in an organization – Hizb ut-Tahrir – which only Russia and Uzbekistan have banned.”

“Hizb ut-Tahrir”?

From the top, Wikipedia’s description: “Hizb ut-Tahrir (Arabic: حزب التحرير‎ Ḥizb at-Taḥrīr; Party of Liberation) is a radical,[1] international, pan-Islamic political organisation, which describes its “ideology as Islam”, and its aim as the re-establishment of “the Islamic Khilafah (Caliphate)” or Islamic state. The new caliphate would unify the Muslim community (Ummah)[2] in a unitary (not federal)[3] “superstate” of unified Muslim-majority countries[4] spanning from Morocco in West Africa to the southern Philippines in East Asia.

From the military perspective promulgated by Global Security: “The group claims to be a political party that proceeds with nonviolent means and whose ideology is Islam. Its objectives are strictly political, and its main goal is to topple an existing regime to resurrect the caliphate with structures and conditions similar to the ones of early 7th century Islam. The proposed Islamic state will be responsible for transforming society in a united Ummah, and for spreading the word of Islam throughout the world. Hizb ut-Tahrir rejects modern, secular state structures and democracy as things that are ‘man-made, humanly derived, and un-Islamic,’ and, therefore, it does not participate in any secular electoral processes. However, Hizb ut- Tahrir does not reject modern technology and its advantages.”

Russia and Crimean Tatars share a brutal history, much of it condensed in an article by Eric Lohr in the Religion and Politics blog (May 28, 2014):

If Russia and the Tatars are to get along, they will have to overcome not only the bitter legacy of the 1944 deportations, but also centuries of conflict. Russian Tsar Catherine the Great’s conquest of the Crimean Khanate in 1774 led to a mass emigration of Tatars to the Ottoman Empire that was encouraged by the new Russian authorities. Catherine then proceeded to distribute vast lands that had been used by Tatars for grazing to Russian, Ukrainian, German, and foreign nobles and farming communities. The Crimean war of 1853-56 spurred another mass emigration of Crimean Tatars. Memories of historical injustices run the other way too. During the three centuries when the Crimean Tatar Khanate was part of the Ottoman Empire (1478-1774), one of its primary activities was seizing captives from Russia, Ukraine, and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and selling them as slaves in the Ottoman Empire and Middle East.

Lohr, Eric.  “Russia and the Crimean Tatars: The Burdens and Challenges of History.”  Religion and Politics, May 28, 2014).

In the present, Putin’s Era, labeling Russia’s overt investigation of the Crimean Tatar community and the brushing away of the Islamist taint linked to Hizb ut-Tahrir perhaps signals that disingenuous writing that would promote chaos, at least, if not evil outright under the guise of concern with liberation and human rights.

Suspicion of within-mosque association with Hizb ut-Tahrir might rightly call any number of authorities, Ukrainian no less than Russian, to alert and to action.  The same may not condone The Bear’s hamfisted and often suspect methods, but it may excuse them in the interest of further explicating political drifts and their strength within so many conflicted and conflict-creating communities within Russia and within the Russian “sphere of challenge” — defined by annexations, frozen conflicts, infiltrations, information warfare, etc. — redeveloped KGB-style by Vladimir Putin.

As regards the Russia-in-Crimea act of fascist assertion and intimidation in surrounding with police a presumably peaceful mosque (“Shimmer” always applies): where is and where was the crime?

Ukrainians (a lot more than Russians) will need to know who is modern, i.e., who has become accustomed to and positively willing to embrace a world adjusted beneath the umbrella of compassionate, practical, and tolerant secular law?

Ukrainians also may wish to know who is not modern, i.e., who would embrace and reconstruct the medieval world and worldview, the same that has been on bloody display in Syria since 2011?

Midway down the left sidebar of this blog comes a bit of Jewish advice to those who would for kindness or naivete abet the designs of those inclined toward intolerance, sadism, and willfulness:

Talmud 7:16 as Quoted by Rishon Rishon in 2004
Qohelet Raba, 7:16
אכזרי סוף שנעשה אכזרי במקום רחמן

Kol mi shena`asa rahaman bimqom akhzari Sof shena`asa akhzari bimqom rahaman

All who are made to be compassionate in the place of the cruel In the end are made to be cruel in the place of the compassionate.

More colloquially translated: “Those who are kind to the cruel, in the end will be cruel to the kind.”

Online Source: http://www.rishon-rishon.com/archives/044412.php

As Halya Coynash’s writing makes the rounds, the example of that with which this post was started and titled, one may wish to keep in mind post-Soviet Russia’s deeply feudal revanch under Putin’s guidance.  The “mafia state” — the same that supported the rightly deposed thug Yanukovych — has also a nationalist drive and a revived Russian Orthodox Church attached: for the want of its own greater aggrandizement and not a little criminality, Russia appears to believe it has cause to induce extremism — or more extreme response — in the path of its own habitual imperialism.  

As with the delinquent fireman who sets the fire that he can put out, Russia’s state game appears to involve creating the problem (as with the incubating of ISIS in Syria) that its own “heroic” self might solve — an evil design, for sure, but if it has worked so far, and for Russia, so well, lol, in Syria, may God let it not take off in Crimea.

The method worked at least once (upon a time) in Somalia.

Additional Reference

ADC Memorial.  “Representative Body of Crimean Tatars to be Banned by Russian Law Enforcement.”  March 3, 2016:

If the symbolic attributes of Mejlis are banned, uncertainty will prevail concerning the use of the flag of Crimean Tatars. The latter is not a symbol of Mejlis, but of all Crimean Tatars. It is used by Mejlis to represent the community’s identity.

“The decision to ban Mejlis for alleged “extremist activities” may open the way to a massive wave of prosecution of Crimean Tatars for whom Mejlis is a symbol of struggle against century long repressions,” – said Karim Lahidji, FIDH President.

Knott, Eleanor.  “What the banning of Crimean Tatars’ Mejlis Means.”  The Atlantic Council, May 2, 2016.


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