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By Leonas Sabaliunas

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Seventy years later, citizens of post-Soviet states still encounter difficulties in filling visa applications and other documents with a category 'nationality'. A Tatar or a Ukrainian living in Russia cannot understand that he is being asked about citizenship and not about ethnic affiliation. Thus, this list of 190 different 'national' identities immediately became the subject of scholarly ethnographic processing and political manipulations that have continued to this day. Ethnographers, linguists, and historians went to work to redefine the list by declaring some identities dialectal, sub-ethnic, or local variants of larger ethnoses.

Statistical Survey]. Moscow: Statistika, 1990, p. 4. 2010 9:45:30] cover majority in their 'own' republics and becoming subject to an even greater degree of acculturation towards Russian culture. The economic policy of the Soviet state exerted a contradictory influence on the ethnic situation. From the very first years of Bolshevik government there was an officially proclaimed goal to eliminate the economic backwardness of the national republics. In the predominantly rural areas, industrial enterprises were built specifically for the purpose of ensuring the growth of the working class, which the regime saw as its main stronghold, and to improve social conditions.

There was no way but to take some severe measures against them. Several guilty Cossack settlements had been deported and repeopled by the Chechens. The mountain people have understood it that now the Tersk Cossacks could be offended with impunity . . If the mountain people do not stop these excesses the Soviet authorities will punish them with all the strictness of the revolutionary power (Stalin, 1947, vol. 4, pp. 399400). The most terrible acts of genocide were committed in the form of deportations and page_36 Page 37 organized hunger in the campaign against the kulaks and to effect mass collectivization (Conquest, 1986).

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