Thoughts on "Religious Fundamentalism" Identity in Central Asia
H. B. Paksoy, D. Phil.
Inaugural Lecture by H. B. Paksoy, Texas Tech University, The Special
Collections Library Presentation Series, 21 February 2002
As a means of focusing our attention, let us consider two questions:
1) What is the Identity of Fundamentalism? For example: Is Religion equal
2) Who is more eager for the Central Asians to be fundamentalists?
Now, we can consider a population in 1990, exhibiting the following
confessional attributes: 35,0481 operating churches, clustered in 219
denominations; 58.6 % of the total population maintaining church
membership; 335,389 pastors in parishes; 537,379 total clergy. This country
has 203 seminaries with 52,025 students enrolled. One sect alone operating
8,913 schools, not counting other denominational parochial schools. These
figures do not include resources devoted to overseas evangelical and
missionary activities. This political entity has 3.5 million square miles
of territory and 145,383,738 out of a total population of 248 million are
church members. The political entity in question, of course, is the United
There are no comparable statistics with respect to Central Asia, which has
a land mass akin to that of the U.S., but its population of approximately
80 million is clustered in several irrigated patches separated by
uninhabitable expanses. From the late 1930s until 1990 there were only two
seminaries in Central Asia, with a student body not more than several dozen
students in attendance. Total number of operating mosques, according to
varying Soviet statistics, numbered around one hundred. The holy book Koran
was published less than half a dozen times until 1984 in limited
quantities. The entire clergy was under the total control of the state.
The bureaucratic apparatus of the center selected the seminary students for
training and the graduating clergy were then assigned by the state
apparatus to practice religion who paid them monthly. All official clergy
reported to one of the four Moslem Spiritual Boards. In Central Asia the US
type evangelical TV or radio stations are not indigenous. In the earlier
periods, such as between the 12th and 16th centuries, the propagation
medium of religion and legitimation of a new ruler was literature,
especially poetry. Instead, especially during the past two centuries,
Central Asia has been a target of proselytization, both Islamic and
Christian, rather than a jubilant exporter of religion. The sources of
these efforts to variously Islamicize or Christianize Central Asians are
diverse, and now continuing with renewed vigor.
At this point, it may be useful to remind ourselves of a fundamental
difference between Christianity and Islam: Christianity generally operates
within a set administrative church apparatus. The Christian sects have a
hierarchy, with a church pastor answering to a bishop of his denomination
as well as the congregation. The bishop, in turn, answers to a higher level
cleric, and so on. And, some of the denominations maintain a world-wide
spiritual leader, with a suitable supporting state apparatus. None of this
is the fundamental case with respect to Islam. A prayer leader only answers
to his congregation. This is because Islam believes that there ought not be
any type of mediation between a soul and God, a thought that fueled the
Christian Reformation in the 16th century. Each individual will communicate
with the deity at his own personal level and receive unconditional
salvation. Again, in its original form, Islam did not make a distinction
between the spiritual and the profane worlds; religion and statecraft are
of one fabric. That is, when the mosques are not under the control of the
political state, be it the 8th century Caliphates or the 21st century
sovereign states. As mentioned above, on the other hand, the Soviet Union
totally took over religion and placed it firmly under state control.
Nothing religious, regardless of sect, could take place without the
knowledge or permission of the security organs. The purpose, as
demonstrated in related literature, was to remove this religious influence
from the ruling equation, to make the population more pliable in general to
the demands of the state. After all, a religion usually has legitimation
issues involving the ruling strata and may support or oppose a political
system or politician.
Much has been written about the rise and fall of Islam as a political
movement, military power and distinct civilization. A great majority of
those commentaries aim to view Islam as a monolith. Indeed, some of the
practitioners and even opponents of Islam wish to portray it as such---each
for its own benefit. One look at the record indicates that, much like
Christianity, national interests have always taken precedence over that
putative unity. Christian Europeans have killed each other by the tens of
millions during the 20th century World Wars under various grievances.
Likewise, Islamic states also went to war with each other during the same
period. Were all those wars fought in the name of religion? At the time of
the fighting, the combatants claimed so. Further, all parties insisted that
theirs was the true religion, and the belief of the opposing party was
nothing but heresy. But, everyone, deep down their hearts could at least
sense that there were other reasons. These are as varied as the desires and
dreams of all humans. Some can be lumped together under economic, even
In order to better understand this puzzle, it may be helpful to delve into
the identity of the belief systems, stripped of their outer garments.
It is commonplace to have a person or polity to have more than one
identity. Political (political party preference), economic (fee market or
restricted forms of daily economic activity), belief systems (for example,
Buddhist or Christian, etc). But, choices and occurrences do not stop
there. We, as individuals cannot choose our birth order, an occurrence that
also contributes to one's identity, much like being a parent, member of a
particular social or service club, or a graduate of a specific school. This
complexity of identities certainly contributes, as a package, to the
Within the foregoing framework, therefore, it may be necessary to
investigate the needs of various identities and the interactions among
those needs, and associated costs.
GOVERNANCE The statecraft of Central Asia has deep roots, with
surviving manuals from the tenth century and even earlier. The nature and
identity of political systems of the region have evolved according to the
needs of the populace and ecological environment. As it always is the case,
a certain ruling exhaustion (born of long term governance) had already set
in by the time outsiders first discovered Central Asia. These outsiders
began publishing their understanding of the events, institutions and
practices. However, the visitors---whether they were traveling in an
invading army, or collecting intelligence or peddling commercial
wares---had arrived with pre-conceived notions. These prejudices included
both expectations of what to find and also their own perceptions of
personal worth and capabilities. Unfortunately, those published works
served to establish the bases for foreign policy options of a number of
neighboring and far away states. This practice produced disastrous
consequences for all, born of a mismatch between what is expected of the
central Asians and the conditions that existed in central Asia. Most of
those issues are still alive and well.
When the polities that come under pressure from outside sources to
modernize, open up to global trade, their long standing local values are
disrupted. These disrupted polities will wish to preserve their identities
as a means of preserving and maintaining their life styles in many manner
they think appropriate. After all, they realize, this is war by other
Anytime a problem is defined, the mind wanders about casting for an answer
or solution. There may not always one ready to hand, other than the
invisible hand that apply to economics. That is not to say that there ought
not be any communication whatever among polities. Rather, the question is
at what level? And, what ought be the qualifications of those
communicators? And their numbers, intentions, objectives? If the designated
communicators are there with the pre-conceived notions, to impose their
will on the other side, the entire enterprise fails, and the hostilities
commence once again.
It has been suggested that peace, enduring peace, can only be devised by
global participation of all polities. This is difficult to defend or demonstrate.
Some governance systems are designed for perpetual conflict without which
they cannot survive. To quash such particularistic systems, other polities
must arm and wage real war. The necessity to establish additional forces
and logistics for the purpose eventually recalls Napoleon's dictum: One can
do everything with a bayonet, except sit on it.
The federative model of governance is a solution advanced to check the
excesses of a overly centralized and overly authoritarian world government.
In that case, the laws enacted, rules promulgated with executive decree in
the name of the majority (it those indeed reflect the clear decisions of
the majority), presumably for the good of all will not suit the needs and
aspirations of the minority or minorities. Will that mismatch not
constitute a violation of rights pursued by the majority as well? Will the
minority be forced into submission into a set of circumstances, for
example, buying a certain product, for the sake of 'efficiency?' If the
producer of, say, genetically engineered agricultural products have the
right to engineer and market them, should not the consumers also have the
right to accept or reject them?
BELIEF Assaults on belief systems are not uncommon to Central
Asians, who, in the course of a millennium, have braced themselves against
a number of major campaigns. However, shamanism is the earliest known
belief system, based on spirituality, courage, physical prowess,
hospitality and generosity. It has two discernible basic branches: one of
the earliest known monotheisms, the Tengri; and the dual diety Erlik and
Dirlik (Sky and Underground gods, respectively). Over time, the Turk
shamanism came into contact with neighboring belief systems, such as
Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Mithraism; and exchanged tokens (images and
lores) or significant eschalatological aspects. The entry of Islam into
this Shamanist territory created new traditions, and in some cases
seriously eroded the basics of both belief systems. There are myriad poems
and stories demonstrating the shamanist resistance to Islam, from all over
Central Asia. For example: A Turkmen rider encounters a dismounted
kinsman. The latter had stuck a twig in the ground, in the vast expanses of
the bozkir (semi desert, arid-lands) to create a semblance of private
space, and is performing namaz (ritual prayer) behind it. The rider chides
Anan, atan işidür
çarpmak, yıkmak, talamak
Kim kodu sana
çöpe tapmak, toprak yalamak?
It is the tradition of your forebearers
to strike, to raid
So, who induced you
to worship the twig and lick the dirt?
In another instance, precepts of Islam were being explained to a gathering
of Kazaks. The preacher, attempting to review and reinforce his message,
puts the question to the assembly: And, how will the Kazaks enter paradise?
To which an attendee responds without hesitation: On horseback. 
Among some of the Turk groups, reverence is articulated towards the
ancestral superstars in poetry:
Kök kümbezin kürüldetip,
ürkütme bizni Biy Temir;
Qaraqaş taşın qımıldatıp,
Qorkutma bizni Biy Temir
Do not scare us Bey Temir
By making your blue dome thunder;
Do not frighten us Bey Temir
By moving your black stone
Haris Sisenbay, c. 1922 
Of course, many an ode was written to Islam as well as Christianity. The
following is a rare 'fusionist' (combining Turk Shamanism with Islamic
doctrines) poem, somehow attempting to merge the two.
Bir kapıdan Baba Ilyas çıktı
Ayak çıplak baş açık sine üryan
Erenler katında ulu kaçıktı
Yarı ıslâm idi yarı şaman 
Baba Ilyas emerged from a door
Barefeet, open headed, bare chested
Among the saints, a grand ole holy fool
Half Shaman, the other half Islam
Perhaps the Turk proverb Avcu nice al bilse, Adük anca yol bilür (As many
devices the hunter knows to hunt with, so does the bear to escape) is still
ECONOMICS In the recent months, works on 'influence of modernity' on
Central Asia began appearing. According to this observation, capitalist
consumer goods flooded third world countries as a part of the globalization
process. This caused an outflow of capital from essentially poor economies
to wealthy ones, leaving the poor countries even more destitute. Artisans,
merchants and others became unemployed reducing income generation. Poverty
The foregoing can be either a Marxist or a Capitalist view. Only the
proposed solutions differ. The Marxist demand that all outside intervention
to cease, foreigners to go home. Capitalist require loans to be made from
their financial institutions to the countries at hand.
Economic, political and military institutions form an inseparable trivet.
Does any one of these have an absolute superiority over the other two? Not
even in absolute regimes can they be separated. This, however, does not
stop absolutists from trying. Marxists demand and fund national liberation
fronts, while the Capitalists---by now having been converted into
Mercantilists monopolists---insist on joint-ventures and free trade. Both
parties will also desire a military solution, involving the basing of
troops, previous withdrawal demands notwithstanding, from both sides on the
soil of the third party.
So far, as it is noticed, suggestions and demands have been pouring from
out side in. No one yet consulted the populace that became a target of
outside theories, generally hatched without reference to the practices
followed in daily life. This is where the Identity issues become clear.
Global Trade is war by other means. It is an attempt at transferring wealth
and resources from the losing party to the victor. The party that amasses
the most wealth will be known as the most noble. Since Second World War, it
has been argued that a world government is necessary to prevent global
wars. This is in essence an idea first advanced over two centuries ago, at
least in two different major versions: The Hobbesian variety relied on a
strong central ruler (as in Leviathan) to impose order. In the other, Mill
foresaw a trade based mutually dependent environment conducive to peace.
Kant then made an attempt to combine the two, by means of cosmopolitan
laws. In all cases, the sovereignty of the nation states are reduced in
favor of cosmopolitan laws. These writings greatly influenced the present
forms of the United Nations and the World Trade Organization.
It can be argued that both approaches can be associated with a unique
transference of initiative, resources and sovereignty from the individual
to multinational organizations led by yet to be tested. One relatively new
experiment on these principles is the formation of the European Union. In
addition to a large bureaucratic apparatus, the EU also possesses a
legislative body based in Strasbourg. However, the European Parliament
lacks the real means of regulating the multinational organizations. If, on
the other hand, should the European Parliament acquires such means, there
is always the danger of that body going beyond the intention of the
population---that may, perhaps, endow that body with stronger charter--- in
As one response, perhaps Consumerism need to adapt, to consider such
agreements as NAFTA regulations where a grieved person or company, from a
polity outside of the USA may force the closure of a US business; in a
secret meeting, closed to the public.
THOUGHTS ON IDENTITY The issue, at once, becomes cultural; thus, a
matter of Identity. Moreover, the tussle and the concern is not over a
specific product, but over the pre-eminence of ideas and approaches to that
intellectual output. A 'problem' is defined in cultural terms, containing
the seeds of a proposed solution. If a polity is regarded as the problem,
should it be exterminated? What if the same polity also regards the earlier
one in the same terms? What is likely to transpire? Mutual annihilation?
For example, when the steelmakers of other polities put the US steel plants
out of business, what was the problem, and its solution?
During the 1960's and 1970's waves of international terrorism swept Europe.
Prominent European politicians and businessmen were kidnapped and killed.
When caught, the perpetrators defended themselves with the assertion that
they had the right to break the law, and such a right could not be
truncated by any authority. Some judicial organs and Thought Employers 
understood the true nature of the claim; it was to stress the nature of the
laws and associated intentions. At the time, no polity was bombed by the
armed forces of any country.
It appears a world government, as has been proposed, has some issues to
resolve yet. The bow of a boat arrives at its destination first, ahead of
the stern. But, it is the stern that guides it there.
Thus, Identity is a composite.  A great many ingredients are stirred
into a solution, which, from the outside seems a solid unchanging mass.
This makes Identity an extremely fluid structure, but one with definite
parameters. Shifts in the composition are predictable. That is, it is
definite that anger and despondency will be exhibited when income reduced
or lost. What we do not know is when this person or better yet a group of persons
in the same set of conditions will take some firm action, such as revolting
by various means.
Identity components are strongly influenced by culture. Culture, by its
original definition, is cultivation of mind. This is specific to place and
time. What was handed down from the parents from childhood on. A composite
of values transmitted from one generation to the next determines the
general culture of a given polity. It is both changeable and immutable.
This seeming contradiction is best understood by learning the specific
If a given polity has a culture of unchanging adherence to certain
principles in personal life, for examples as Amish live, then there will be
a collision, between a given immutable principle and the society at large.
Literally. In Ohio and Pennsylvania there are regular accidents between
horse drawn Amish carriages and motorcars. Does that create a certain
tension within the community?
The consequences of intergenerational conflict in a large part of the world
have been appearing ever since the first generation. This shift of
emphasis, or change, is forced by changing conditions in the immediate
vicinity. However, the reception of the depth and range of change differs
from one polity to the next. This is not because a polity cannot handle the
change or its speed. The priority is attached to the leavening of the given
culture. How and what was learned.
The Marxist culture, for example, equates enlightenment with empowerment,
so that individuals can take their fate into their hands. The opposing
camp, the capitalists, fervently believe the solution lies in education.
Even if the terminology is somewhat different, both end up with the same
methods and means. So far, however, it must have become apparent, the real
competition is actually between two groups who interpret and staunchly
practice their ideologies. The target polity is a field of contention, the
prize, or, at best, a testing laboratory.
Then, after a while, the target polity, or its components, begin assessing
these outside factors influencing and affecting their lives. These alien
thoughts appear to be contrary to their own desires and expectations, as
leavened by their own culture. As a result, they decide to take action, in
order to remove the outside obstacles to their own lifestyle. The methods
they choose to obtain will vary from one polity to the next. But they will
also learn from the methods directed at them by all camps. And, they will
turn the tables on alien influences. It will be costly to all parties involved.
Belief systems have always been a part of human endeavor. In turn, there
has always been a raging competition between belief systems. Is it the
ideas themselves, or the agents they influence and act upon that compete?
How well do the agents understand the basic precepts of the belief systems?
Or, did the agents deliberately distort those tenets, for pecuniary
interest? Central Asia has been, and still is, a battlefield of belief
systems, with Islam being one of the latest entrant into the fray. And,
many interpretations of Islam have been fueled not only by indigenous
interest groups, but also by the outside players. The latter may have the
distinction of constituting the majority of such initiatives.
The belief systems, once released onto a polity, begin interacting with the
economic, political and military trivet, leading to a new set of issues and
possible solutions. What complicates this already crowded matrix is that
most, if not all, belief systems tend to have subdivisions. These internal
components of a belief system may and do contain self-contradictory
doctrines in themselves. The existence of such bifurcations are an ideal
opening for outside forces to exploit, for the purpose of influencing the
affairs of target polities. When the target polity objects to the outside
entities and their aims and methods, these outsiders may and will resort to
clandestine methods. They will, essentially, insist on getting their way.
All throughout recorded history one warlike visit begat a return of the same
upon the initial aggressor. As an extension, when clandestine operations
become known--- and they will invariably become public---the same response
can be expected. These responses need not be on the same level of the
outside offenders. The targeted polity will choose its timing and methods.
Even after a long wait, lasting decades.
If the clandestine forces of the outside polities choose to concentrate on
bifurcations of belief, governance or economic systems to exploit, that
does not mean that the target polity will respond in kind. But, respond,
Both the authoritarian and the mercantilist systems, while competing
against each other, will also initiate paramilitary operations. At a
certain activity level, these operations will be penetrated and
This is exactly the case with respect to Afghanistan and the rest of
Central Asia. Not only the immediate neighbors of Afghanistan in Central
Asia, but also polities from other regions have been partaking in this
process of exploitation of bifurcated belief and governance systems. A
portion of the targeted population, originally grieved by economic and
political depredations, will respond decisively to the provocation. This
will be in the direction of military action. This includes, necessarily,
the struggle waged between the 17th and 20th century struggle between the
mercantilist and the capitalist governance systems; the latter attempting
to change the world, as the former doggedly resisting.
Central Asia, even if the term implies a block of land, is not a monolith
in cultural terms. Afghanistan has a different history and culture than
Iran or the Newly Independent States of Kazak, Kirghiz, Tajik, Turkmen,
Ozbek. Even within the NIS, the experience, for example, of Tajikistan is
different than the adjacent neighbor Ozbekistan. For example, Afghanistan
did not exist as a state before the 20th century. The five states of
Central Asia were part of a much larger entity, named Turkistan. Languages
spoken in Afghanistan, that is, the existence of large minorities are not
the same elsewhere.
WHAT TO EXPECT The issue at hand, then, becomes: 1) Will the polity
at hand evolve politically and economically, if left to its own devices 2)
How much external interference in whatever form will be tolerated a) by the
governance strata of the target polity b) the people of the polity.
The political systems of the region, prior to the arrival of outside
authoritarianism in the form of various external clandestine services, were
designed or evolved according to local realities. These eastern or Oriental
governance systems, labeled 'unsophisticated,' 'primitive,' so on, were in
existence for millennia or more, when they were discovered or designed for
the past two hundred years within the western reaches of the world. When
Bismarck, in late 19th century was designing his Governance Participation
Units (factory unions; workplace representatives, etc) or multi-party and
coalition initiatives were taking place in their neighborhood, such systems
have been functioning in places such as Afghanistan and in the east for
quite sometime. They were established institutions long before university
based social scientists created books of terminology to explain them.
All these old and new systems of Governance Participation Units came into
being for the obvious reason: to share in the resources, to keep the polity
in balance. Every Governance Participation Unit, through its membership
strength and leadership skills, sought to obtain what they deemed a fair
share of what is available. In terms of functions, who gets how much water
and who gets to build a golf course or travels to space as a tourist work
on the same principles. One of the implications of this (often is regarded
euphemistically as a resource sharing arrangement by the outsiders) is that
the polities targeted by authoritarian or mercantilist polities will assess
the relative merits of what is being imposed on them. In the end, the
target polity members may reject what is on offer from the outside, in
favor of keeping what is and has been there as far back as the existence of
the polity. The more the pressure on a target polity, the more energetic
the objections and resultant countermeasures.
Corruption, under many guises will take place, despite prescribed safeguards.
Corruption is basically an attempt at subverting the rules of governance.
It is a dash to jump the queue, divert resources for the benefit of a
sub-group or individual at the expense of the rest of the polity. If the
polity does not have effective recourse to enforcement of the rules,
corruption will cause the eventual collapse of the system, and the polity.
Some polities engage their secret services, in full force, to deal with
corruption. To eradicate it. Other polities' secret services fully cooperate
with the players of corruption and become corrupt themselves. The entire
polity suffers from a range of ills, including human rights abuses and
distortions in income distribution. When the corruption is exported along
with a political and economic system, the recipients not only may not
appreciate the incoming product, but also resent the defective nature of
the process and choose to fight it with tools at their own disposal.
The abusers of belief systems are rather adept at exploiting all of the above
ideas and means. As usual, when a new system arrives, it has to do battle
with the existing one. The new recruits or converts will be more eager to
prove their worth than the rest who have been in it for a longer period.
Similarly, adherents of an old system will seek revenge. The methods of the
revenge are not necessarily salient; revenge, itself, is.
The so called fundamentalism is a hybrid. First there exists a body of
disgruntled people. Second, there are individuals and groups who abuse the
belief system for either institutional or personal gain. Third, the
interest groups from the outside place unwanted pressure on the same
people. The resultant cocktail can well be overly potent. And, one
fundamentalism, regardless of its origin and location, will fuel others;
just like one armed visit will begat a military invasion in return.
Central Asian political movements emerging at the beginning of the 20th
century stressed a separation between religion and state, before the
coercive Soviet methods were put into place. This can be observed from the
platforms and programs they issued over time. When the Bolsheviks
militarily incorporated Central Asia into what became the Soviet Union, all
plans for the a secular and independent Central Asian state were also
In closing: to place the issue of fundamentalism into perspective, perhaps
the two initial questions need to be reiterated: 1) Is religion equal to
nationality? 2) Who is more eager for the Central Asians to be
Authors Bio: Dr. H. B. PAKSOY has taught at the Ohio State
University, Franklin University, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, the
Central Connecticut State University, and delivered public lectures in a
dozen other institutions of higher learning, both in the U.S. and abroad.
Over the past two decades, some fifty of his research papers have appeared
in over forty-five periodic journals and scholarly collections, in ten
countries, on the European, Asian, and North American continents.
Dr. Paksoy has published (as author or editor) seven books: IDENTITIES: HOW
GOVERNED, WHO PAYS? (Lawrence, KS: Carrie, 2001); ESSAYS ON CENTRAL ASIA
(Lawrence, KS: Carrie, 1999); INTERCULTURAL STUDIES (Co-Editor)(Simon and
Schuster Education Group, 1998); TURK TARIHI, TOPLUMLARIN MAYASI, UYGARLIK
(Izmir: Mazhar Zorlu Holding, 1997); CENTRAL ASIA READER: The Rediscovery
of History (New York: M. E. Sharpe, 1994); CENTRAL ASIAN MONUMENTS
(Istanbul: Isis Press, 1992); ALPAMYSH: Central Asian Identity Under
Russian Rule (Hartford, Connecticut: AACAR, 1989).
He has also served in administrative and consultative capacities in several
H. B. PAKSOY earned his D. Phil. from Oxford University, England (with a
Grant from the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals of the
Universities of the United Kingdom), M.A. at the University of Texas at
Dallas (with a National Science Foundation Project Grant Assistantship),
and B.S. at Trinity University (with Bostwick Scholarship).
Notes: 1. Constant H Jacquet, Jr. Editor, Yearbook of American and
Canadian Churches 1990 (Nashville: Abingdon Press, Communications Unit of
the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA, 1990).
2. In 1900, it was estimated that in Turkestan alone, without counting the
khanates of Bukhara and Khiva, there were 1503 congregational mosques and
11230 parish mosques with a total of 12499 imams (prayer leaders) to
minister to 6 million persons, that is, one mosque for every 471 believers.
See Geoffrey Wheeler, The Modern History of Central Asia (New York: Praeger
3. H. B. Paksoy, Deceivers. Central Asian Survey Vol. 3, N. 1, 1984.
4. H.B. Paksoy, Nationality or Religion?: Views of Central Asian Islam
AACAR Bulletin (of the Association for the Advancement of Central Asian
Research) Vol VIII, No. 2, 1995; Reprinted in International Journal of
Central Asian Studies Volume 3, 1998; Translation in Central Asia and the
Gulf, Masayuki Yamauchi, ed. (Tokyo: Asahi Selected Series, 1995) .
Original reprinted in Essays on Central Asia (Lawrence, KS: Carrie, 1999)
also accessible at: http://www.ku.edu/carrie/texts/carrie_books/paksoy-6/
5. H. B. Paksoy, Sun is also Fire Central Asian Monuments (Istanbul: Isis,
6. With many thanks to Dr. Buğra Atsız.
7. Z.V. Togan, Hatıralar (Istanbul, 1969) . Sisenbay was the Başkurt
orderly to Z.V. Togan (1890-1970) during the Turkistan National Liberation
Movement of the 1920s and 1930s. See The Basmachi Movement From Within: An
Account of Zeki Velidi Togan Nationalities Papers Vol. 23, No 2. June 1995.
Pp. 373-399. Reprinted in CENTRAL ASIA READER: The Rediscovery of History
H.B. Paksoy, Editor, Translator (New York/London: M. E. Sharpe, 1994). 'Biy
Temir' (or Temur Bey) is the correct spelling of what has been rendered as
'Tamarlane:' And the 'black stone' is the very large, very dark green jade
marking Timur's burial location, inside the moseleum known as Kök kümbez
'Sky Blue Dome' ('sky blue' or 'Turquoise' has been the primary royal color
8. See Peter B Golden Codex Comanicus' in Central Asian Monuments
(Istanbul: ISIS Press, 1992).
10. H.B. Paksoy, Dusunce Isvereni Turk Tarihi, Toplumlarin Mayasi, Uygarlik
(Izmir: Mazhar Zorlu Holding, 1997)
11. H.B. Paksoy, Identities: How Governed, Who Pays? (Lawrence: Carrie,
2001). Simultaneous print and e- book release. Accessible at