«We need to look into the past in order to understand the present and foresee the future»
N.A.Nazarbayev

A Glimpse into the Orbulak battle

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A Glimpse into the Orbulak battle

In the history of the Kazakh people there were many heroic battles that played a pivotal role in Kazakh history. As the writer of history Mukhtar Magauin noted, "no one can protect the Kazakhs, except for themselves. If there were no such victories as in the battle of Bulanty, Anyraqay battles, then three centuries ago the Kazakh Horde would have completely disappeared."

An example of unprecedented courage and heroism, military valor and art is the Orbulak battle. The 17th century - one of the most difficult and tragic periods in the history of the Kazakh people, which is characterized by the most difficult and bloody wars with the Jungarian invaders. In the Kazakh Khanate, the races and rivalry between the tribal nobility and the feudal lords did not subside. Some Kazakh sultans sought to isolate themselves from the khan's power and rule their possessions alone. Close ties began to be broken between the zhuzes. This difficult political situation was taken advantage of by the Jungars.

After taking the power, Batyr kontaychi created a strong centralized state in Jungaria (1635-1654). The Jungars sought to consolidate trade and handicraft centers, caravan roads, pastures, which, in the conditions of nomadic livestock, attracted redistribution of land. The struggle against the jungar was led by Zhangir Khan, whose reign was presumably due in 1645-1652. Like his father Yesim Khan, he was concerned about the strengthening of the Jungar Khanate. In 1628 the Khan Yesim died. At this time the sultan Zhangir was in the north-east of Kazakhstan, guarding the country's borders from the Kalmaks - the western Mongols. In 1635 a large army of Batyr kontaychi invaded the Kazakh Khanate, supported by related Torgau.
 
A small group of Zhangir was defeated, and he himself was taken prisoner. He had to end up drinking a cup of sorrow and humiliation. The young Sultan was no different from ordinary soldiers - the same light mail, felt cover, the same armament. Kalmaks also could not think that they were the heir of the Kazakh throne. In addition, he spoke Mongolian and knew the customs of his neighbors. At the first halt he began to pray. Seeing that the prisoner turns in prayers to Tengri, the Kalmaks took him for his brother Tolengit. They began to treat him better, even untied their hands and feet. As soon as he freed himself from the ropes, he disappeared on the first night. Zhangir often repeated to his soldiers: "Not all prayers should be believed." It is this fact from his biography that explains Zhangir's irreconcilable hatred of the Jungars.

He was a warrior-king, seasoned in battles and battles. Even during life, the people nicknamed him "Salqam Zhangir" - which means strong or impressive. According to historians, he was characterized by such qualities as determination, courage, perseverance, steadfastness, readiness for self-sacrifice. However, the captivity undermined his authority among political rivals and the population for some time. Continuing the political traditions of his father Yesim, Zhangir maintained allied relations with the rulers of the Mughals, long-term friendship connected him with the emir of Samarkand, Zhalantos Bahadur. Their alliance was a response to the creation by Batur of the counter-coalition coalition for an offensive on Semirechie.

The news of the invasion reached the Khan's stake in Turkestan. Zhangir takes the bold decision to meet an enemy force of fifty thousand men with a squad of 600 archers armed with wick rifles. Zhangir also appealed for help to Jalantos Bahadur and enlisted his support. For the battle, Zhangir chose a mountainous place near the river Or. He gave ambush to the jungars. Along the gorge, he ordered the digging of a deep moat and erect a high rampart on its edge. When the Kalmak cavalry deepened into the gorge, the Kazakhs opened fire from flintlock guns. Batur kontayci began to withdraw his army, stretched along the entire gorge, but 20 thousand soldiers of Zhalantos, who had arrived from Samarkand, waited for them in ambush.

According to historians, in this battle the Jungarian ruler lost more than ten thousand soldiers and suffered a crushing defeat. Returning from the unsuccessful campaign, Batur kontaychi was building plans for revenge on the Kazakh ruler for the death of his army and the shame of his military talent. However, Zhangir khan, who differed not only in military tactics, but also with great diplomatic talent, strove to end the Jungar aggression and repeatedly sent ambassadors to the Jungarian Khanate. In 1647, a peace agreement was concluded between Batyr kontaychi and Zhangir khan. The pledge of this agreement was the marriage of the khan with the daughter of kontaychi. As you know, in this marriage, Zhangir had a son, who was destined to become the famous Tauke khan.

The Orbulak battle took place in the area of ​​Belzhaileu. Belzhaileu is a series of pastures between the mountain ranges of the Jungarian Alatau and Altyn-Emel. There is a road from Pribalkhash to the Ili valley. This is one of the best places Zhetysu with its own special microclimate. In summer there is no drying heat and scorched grass. The ancient Saks knew about this, the mounds of which are found along the road. They knew about this and the Jungars. The Orbulak battle was an example of courage, heroism and incredible strength of the military spirit of the Kazakhs. It entered the world record of military glory and military skill. The success of the battle was determined primarily by the military skill of Zhangir.

This year, the country celebrates the 375th anniversary of the victory in the Orbulak battle. Along the international highway "Shymkent - Tashkent" a memorial complex was erected on a high hill near the village of Sharap khan in the Kazygurt district of the South Kazakhstan region. From a distance you can see impressive equestrian statues of Zhangir khan and Zhalantos Bahadur. On the solid granite wall on the outside of the square, where the brave ancestors complex is located, a panel was installed. The image on one reflects the most tragic pages of history, which are known as "Aqtaban shubyryndy, Alakol sulama". The other - reproduces the episodes of the battle of Orbulak. On the panoramic wall, together with the two generals who led the soldiers to this victory, the great historical figures of the Kazakh land - the Shapyrashty Qarasay, Argyn Agyntay, Alshyn Zhiembet, Qanly Sarbuqa, Naiman Kokserek, Dulat Zhaksygul, Suan Eltindi and the batyrs of the brotherly Kyrgyz people - Koten and Tabai. In the center of the memorial complex there is a stone with a historical reference on the monument in honor of the anniversary of the Orbulak battle.

Attention to the unprecedented event, which decided the fate of the nation, will grow from year to year. After all, here, in a narrow mountain gorge at the Koskolantau ridge, Kazakh batyrs stood to death, defeating the many times superior forces of the Jungarian detachments. They have won thanks to their legendary people's commanders and brave warriors, the military art, the thoughtful strategy and tactics of conducting the battle. The worst enemy was defeated not so much by force of arms as by the strength of the spirit and unity of the people, by the power of his selfless love for his land.

In 1993, after Kazakhstan became independent, the 350th anniversary of the historical Orbulak battle was celebrated. The Cabinet of Ministers adopted a special resolution, according to which a number of events were planned throughout the country. At the site of the Orbulak battle, a 20-ton stone with a commemorative inscription was erected. A scientific-theoretical conference was held, books were published. However, for various reasons, not all activities identified in the document were implemented. The proposals to perpetuate the names of Zalantos Bahadur who came to the aid of the militia from Samarkand himself were not fully embodied in the proposals to perpetuate the names of the exiled slaughter of Kazakh-Kyrgyz heroes and generals - Salqam Zhangir khan and the militia.

Moreover, over time, a variety of conflicting opinions began to appear about the Orbulak battle. Someone interpreted this event from the height of his understanding, down to devaluation of the people's exploit, relying on documents in which aggressive imperial policy was imposed at that time in the Kazakh steppe by neighboring countries. Of course, these attempts to slander history left no one indifferent.

The policy of reviving the spiritual and cultural heritage of the country brought us back to the roots, giving impetus to the restoration of historical justice. The experience accumulated over many years in this field led me to think. Despite the fact that the Orbulak battle was far from the southern borders of the country, did not the soldiers under the leadership of the Salqam Zhangir khan participate in the steppes of Turkestan, the former capital of the Kazakh Khanate? Did his army not grow in the course of his movement at the expense of the joined militia-militia who lived in our region? An example of this is the real fact of history - the participation of the people's army led by the skillful shooter Zhaqsygul, our fellow countryman from Kazygurt.

The army, collected in Samarkand by Zhalantos Bahadur, passed through these roads, whose horses raised the ground, hastening to help their Kazakh brothers. Again, could the residents of the Kazakh villages, while meeting the cavalry troops of Bahadur, stay aside? Young jigits and men hurriedly sat in the saddle for the sake of their homeland. We bow before the memory of those who folded their heads in the battles. And how did it happen that there is still no monument to tell the descendants the truth about the great battle that rallied the nation, the whole people?

Every nation absorbs the desire for independence with the mother's milk, and on this path everyone is ready to give his life, because to lose freedom is worse than death. Once in the center of the empire, the young Kazakh state, exhausted by protracted wars and endless enemy raids, was forced to seek allies. The life of our ancestors took place in a merciless, bloody struggle for freedom and the preservation of independence, including on the invisible front of an undeclared war.

There is such a thing as "the fruits of independence". They can not be counted. One of the most important, however, is the elimination of the gaps, the so-called white spots of history, the re-creation of their true history. After gaining the status of an independent state, we were able to realize our rights and take advantage of the opportunities presented. However, this work is still ongoing and requires additional efforts on the part of scientists and researchers.

Within the framework of this program, alongside with domestic documents, layers of foreign archival heritage were raised, hundreds and thousands of documents that had turned yellow, which had been unclaimed for decades, were collected, streamlined and given a second life in dozens of prints. Many articles have been published. A lot of work was done. However, we still have not cleared the evidence from the dust of centuries of the real history of our land from legends and ambiguity. It turned out that to realize such a large-scale task it is necessary not only the time, but also the modernization of our consciousness.

So, gradually representatives of other branches joined the search and inventory of the lost, revival of national values ​​to historians and writers. After all, for a worthy accomplishment of this mission, only enthusiasm, knowledge and patriotism was not enough. In many cases, there was a shortage of funds. Sometimes, when restoring the historical truth or, for example, the truth about the names, there were serious disputes that required specialists in the field of current legislation, common law, foreign practice, international relations, domestic and foreign policy, and interethnic issues. In those regions where the proportion of indigenous people due to the traditions of the past was particularly low, any small problem could turn into a big policy. In this I was convinced, being appointed to the post of chairman of the North-Kazakhstan regional court in 1999. The adopted state program "Cultural Heritage" gave me the opportunity, going beyond the scope of official duties, to engage in public work.

My help was required in solving at first sight seemingly easy, but very significant problems for the region. Took up the introduction of the state language in the judicial proceedings of the region's courts. Without hushing up sensitive problems, they raised them at numerous meetings, openly expressing their opinions. We were looking for indifferent citizens, patriots. Different opinions, suggestions, ideas began to move towards the courthouse. And we did not repel anyone, did not hide behind the expression that this does not apply to our competence.

This is how the problem of oblivion of such a historical figure, as Qozhabergen zhyrau, was manifested. Knowing how serious it is, it is difficult and important, we began to resolve it with the utmost care. There was an international charity fund "Zheti zhargy and Qozhabergen zhyrau". There were opponents. But there were many supporters. Historians, writers, journalists, compilers of pedigrees proved that Qozhabergen was not only a famous zhyrau, but also a famous batyr. We collected all the pieces of his works, restored biographical data, releasing several books based on them. Qozhabergen returned to us! We also held an international scientific conference "History of the Territory in the Fates of People", exalting the most famous figures of North Kazakhstan. The ice started. The number of those who continued and began to develop our business has increased. This was the main victory.

Being on service in the Mangystau region, he never for a moment forgot about the promotion of spirituality. Later it was necessary to intensify this work in South Kazakhstan. It turned out that in a region with a high density of indigenous people, well preserved national traditions and customs, there also existed, and considerable, problems.

The Kazakh people deeply revere the memory and spirit of their ancestors. Before proceeding with the installation of the monument, it was decided to visit distant Orbulak, to hold a moleben in honor of the soldiers who fell in that bloody battle. As the land of this time was called by the outstanding contemporary writer Abish Kekilbayev, Beljailau was truly a paradise land. The inhabitants of the Panfilov district are engaged in animal husbandry. And only the fact that for several kilometers along the roadside, cutting the valley between two mountains, under the green pile of the jailau without fencing in the unknown graves, Salqam Zhangir and his brave warriors settled down.