Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Looking for Forced Labor Projects from the Stalin Era in the Chui Oblast of the Kyrgyz Republic

Today I came across a reproduction of an NKVD report dated 11 January 1946 about two hydroelectric stations in Frunze Oblast built by Russian-Germans mobilized into the labor army. What follows is a quick English language summary. I will post a verbatium translation of the document tomorrow. I do not have time right now.

The report notes that 59 Russian-Germans working on the Voroshilov and Alamedin hydroelectric stations deserted their construction sites and went to live with relatives during the last quarter of 1945. These forced laborers had all lived in sovkhozes and kolkhozes in Frunze Oblast prior to their conscription into the labor army. The report claims that poor living conditions, especially a lack of shoes and clothes for winter conditions, motivated their flight. The report then notes the response of the chief of the UNKVD of Frunze Oblast, Martynenko. He pointed out the lax security regime at places where Russian-German men and women mobilized into the labor army worked. He also proposed that all the fugitives be returned to their places of work. The report concludes by noting that the question of living conditions for labor army workers at the construction sites had been referred to the party and state authorities of the Kyrgyz Soviet Socialist Republic.

Source: N.F. Bugai, ed., "Mobilizovat' nemtsev v rabochie kolonny...I. Stalin": Sbornik dokumentov (1940-e gody) (Moscow: Gotika, 1998), doc. no. 238, pp. 307-308.

Frunze Oblast is now Chui Oblast. It is the oblast that surrounds Bishkek. That means that the Voroshilov and Alamedin hydroelectric stations must be fairly close to me. If anybody knows exactly where these structures are located could you please let me know? You can either e-mail me or leave a comment on this blog.

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