Der Vorsitzende der deutschen Minderheit in Kasachstan, Alexander Dederer, hat in einem ausführlichen Interview (auf englisch hier) über die aktuelle Situation der deutschen Minderheit in Kasachstan berichtet.
Von den vor einigen Jahrzehnten noch über 1.000.000 Angehörigen der deutschen Minderheit in dem zentralasiatischen Staat, sind nach großen Auswanderungswellen - vor allem in den 90er Jahren - rund 200.000 Kasachen mit deutschen Wurzeln übrig geblieben.
Es ist vor allem der Vertreibungspolitik von Stalin zuzuschreiben, dass zahlreiche Russlanddeutsche nach Kasachstan kamen. Dederer erklärt:
“Germans came to Kazakhstan in different years. Germans first visited this country during geographical research expeditions; for example, with such scientists and explorers as Alexander von Humboldt; [Adolph, Herman and Robert] Schlagintweit. … A lot of Germans, attracted by the possibility of obtaining their own patch of land, moved to Kazakhstan during the Stolypin reforms era [the 1906 – 1914 period of agricultural reform]. German settlers easily integrated into the existing community and were actively engaged in agriculture.”
However, Dederer said, Kazakhstan’s biggest influx of Germans came during Stalin’s rule, when Germans were forced to move for policy reasons and because of their nationality.
“Kazakhstan had been turned into one big concentration camp, the so-called Gulag, the centre of which was the city of Karaganda; to be exact, the village Dolinka. The Germans deported from the colonies of Ukraine, the northern Caucasus, Crimea and the Volga region were not simply deported: all the able-bodied population from 16 – 55 years old was forced to join the labour army (until 1957) and work in coal mines, construction sites and tree cutting. According to the decree issued in 1941, this deportation was organised once and forever, which meant that even after the war, these Germans were forbidden to return to their homes,” Dederer said.
Doch der Vorsitzende der deutschen Minderheit sieht trotz des großen Aderlasses in den 90er Jahren gute Zukunftschancen für die deutsche Minderheit als Brücke zwischen Deutschland und Kasachstan. Auch die Übersiedler, die heute zum Teil sehr erfolgreich in Deutschland leben, möchte er stärker als bisher in die deutsch-kasachischen Beziehungen eingebunden wissen und verweist unter anderem auf den Bundestagsabgeordneten Heinrich Zerting (CDU), der aus Kasachstan stammt.
Bemerkenswert ist auch die Einlassung von Alexander Dederer zur Frage, was es heißt "Deutscher in Kasachstan" zu sein:
This is a fairly capacious, multifaceted feeling. Unfortunately, many have forgotten their mother tongue and it is a great loss. But I want to say that to be a German is, first and foremost, to preserve the best qualities of people: faith in justice, the pursuit of honesty and the ability to work hard. With these qualities, people tend to study their native language and traditions and call themselves Germans.
All ethnic groups are equal, and to be proud of belonging to a particular one is absurd. But to have a common destiny with your people, to share the historical consequences of what your ancestors have experienced, to not turn away – this is what is worth respect. It is important to be part of the nation. Sharing the misery and bitterness of defeat and the joy of success is an integral component of national identity. Every nation must preserve the bright colours of their identity and share it with other ethnic groups. Belonging to the German ethnic group in Kazakhstan is the responsibility to preserve our identity and represent us as a worthy part of the multicultural society of Kazakhstan.