The great Russian orientalist Vitaly Naumkin talks about his fusion and involvement in Arab issues
Video duration 51 minutes 04 seconds
An episode of “The Interview” in the first part (2022/1/23) hosted the great Russian orientalist Vitaly Naumkin to talk about his journey towards the Arab world until reaching the influence of Russian policies towards Arab countries.
Naumkin talked about his beginnings with Arabic in the city in which he grew up, and it contained some Arab minorities, and how he was influenced by his father’s friend, the Egyptian doctor Hamdi Abdel Salam, who died in 1966 in Moscow, and then traveled to Cairo on the first visit to the Arab world, and witnessed the setback of Egypt in 1967 .
He also spoke about his participation in the demonstrations that came out of Tahrir Square in Cairo to demand President Gamal Abdel Nasser retract his resignation in 1967, and about my doctoral thesis that he completed: the first in 1972 on the doctrine of the Sufi scholar Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali, and the second “Sciences in the history of the armed struggle for The independence of South Yemen led by the Popular Front” in 1981.
From 1972-1977, he worked at the Higher School of Social Sciences in the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen, which was in southern Yemen and was ruled by a Marxist. Naumkin was visiting the northern part of Yemen during its submission to the Ottoman Empire through the Mutawakkilite Kingdom.
He also made many studies related to the Yemeni island of Socotra, which he described as the most beautiful in the world.
North Yemen is the first country to establish diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union in 1920, and relations were close, as the Soviet Union sent the first shipment of weapons after the opening of its embassy in Taiz in 1952.
After the British withdrawal from Yemen, the Soviet Union sponsored the first Marxist government established in the People’s Republic of Yemen, until the collapse of the Soviet Union and the unification of Yemen to become one country in 1990.
The chief Russian advisor added that he loves President Vladimir Putin for what he has achieved for the Russian state, and thanked him for the honor bestowed upon him in 2019, describing him as the most important influence on Russian policy towards the Arab and Islamic world, and he does not deny the credit he received from the Soviet Union for scholarships to study abroad.
The chief orientalist stressed that, through the Institute of Orientalism in Russia, he helped the Russian countries with many studies and analytical materials on the Arab and Islamic countries, in addition to his participation in many areas that contribute to decision-making in Russia towards the Arab and Islamic world.
Concerning Orientalism in Russia, Naumkin emphasized that the matter began since the reign of King Alexander I in the early 19th century, and the great Islamic presence in the former Soviet Union and in the Russian state today, and interest in this matter has continued until today.