The CIA perception of the Caucasian Political Émigré organizations and Haydar Bammat

  • 29/07/2023
Central Intelligence Agency published a report on March 13, 1947, analyzing the Caucasian Political Émigré organizations, primarily Haydar Bammat, and some of the leading political figures of the Georgian Émigré groups.

We share the English translation of the introduction section of this report and the characteristic analysis of Haydar Bammat.  The original French text of the report also comprises characteristic analysis of some Georgian émigré leaders such as Khariton Chavichvili, Evgeni Gueguechkori, and Michel Kedia, and some general remarks about the dynamics of the political movement of the Georgian émigré groups.  You can have access to the original document in the Primary Sources section of our library.

Click here to have access to the original document (requires membership registry)

When we examine the Americans’ perception of Caucasian émigré movements and personally Haydar Bammat, we realize how their view was short-sighted. When we continue sharing the facts about the political life of Haydar Bammat in the coming weeks and months, you will also appreciate what we mean and be witnessed to critical mistakes of the CIA in their definitions of Bammat.

Enjoy reading this interesting historical evidence.  

CAUCASUS                                                    March 13, 1947

First dossier on the Caucasian question (Georgia)



  1. General comment on the part of the dossier "Caucasus" presented today.
  2. Instruction was communicated to our group in Switzerland.
  3. Note on the voyage of Eugene Petrovich Gegetchkori (in Sweden and Finland in 1943).
  4. Information about the Georgian Menshevik Group in Paris.
  5. Haidar Bammate.
  6. Khariton Chavishvili.
  7. Eugene Petrovich Gegetchkori
  8. Michel Kédia.


General comment on the part of the dossier "Caucasus" presented today

When looking at the political problems of the Caucasus and its emigration, several characteristic elements strike the observer:

  1. Political groups always play a secondary role, and it is relatively easy to identify with them.
  2. Personalities are always of paramount importance, mark general policy and modify that of groups.
  3. The primary role that oil deals play in Caucasian political affairs.
  4. The ease with which Caucasians accept their country's solution to large financial trusts or major foreign powers.
  5. The internal intrigues of Caucasian emigration are not essentially as in most other emigrations - products of ideological conflicts, but reflect international behind-the-scenes maneuvers, great power rivalries, and atrocious personal rivalries (these sometimes go as far as vendetta).
It is with these general features in mind that we have approached the study of the Caucasian file that has been communicated to us (in this case that of the Georgian file), focusing first on a few personalities and pointing out some highlights. In our view, this is the most sensible way to proceed.

We draw your particular attention to the current U-turn towards the Soviets of emigration from Georgia.

The causes of this turnaround are numerous. Here are some of them:

  1. Fear of the consequences of collaboration: unbridled by the Georgians with the Germans (It is quite characteristic from this point of view that the only great Georgian personality of the Menshevik government in exile, Minister Akaki Chenkeli, who did not join the Soviets, was precisely the only one who did not collaborate).
  2. The admiration aroused in all Georgian circles for Stalin's personality and the pride they felt that he was one of their compatriots. (In the same vein, it is the Georgians who have always featured the personality of another of their compatriots Marshal Beria, head of the NKWD).
  3. National jealousy towards other peoples (the Ukrainians, for example, whose Soviet Republic was considerably enlarged during this war to the detriment of Poland), and the hope that Stalin by recovering Kars and Ardahan will also enlarge Georgia at the expense of Turkey.
  4. The belief in the impossibility of Georgia to live without the protectorate of a great power is perhaps also afraid of being locked up in the event of independence within the framework of a state too small with the immensity of its economic field of action.
To these general causes are added in each particular case very varied personal reasons and which it would be futile to enumerate.

We do not know all the clauses of the agreement that followed the rapprochement of Georgian emigration with the Soviets, but we point out the three main ones:

  1. General amnesty for all emigrants.
  2. Granting of Soviet citizenship to Georgian émigrés and their diplomatic and consular protection by the Soviets.
  3. No obligation to return to Georgia or in general to the USSR.
How to interpret this gesture so "generous" of the Soviets? We see several explanations (without pretending to see them all):

  1. Gesture propaganda (as was the case in the case of reconciliation of Russian emigration) to show democratism even Soviet liberalism (a beautiful slogan for the bourgeois "We introduce the opposition").
  2. Perhaps in this particular case Stalin and Beria's leniency towards their countrymen.
  3. The certainty that Georgian connections in international trusts and business-contaminated political circles can be used to their advantage to carry out extensive economic and political espionage.
The consequences of this rapprochement are important and very dangerous:

  1. The Georgians will remain for many the typical victims of Bolshevism and will thus have access to many bourgeois circles despite their turnaround. They will therefore be dream provocateurs, especially since (not all of them have Soviet passports - there are some exceptions such as A. Tchenkéli) even the informed people will not know whether they are dealing with good or bad Georgians.
  2. The Georgians are perhaps most familiar in the world with all the oil intrigues (having participated as owners, intermediaries, brokers, etc. in innumerable dealings), introduced in most of the large trusts will be able to inform the Soviets about the most secret ones.
  3. The Georgians, having enormous sympathies in the circles of the oppressed peoples, will try to take advantage of it to inform the Soviets about the affairs of the émigrés and perhaps about the relations of the latter with their national resistances.
  4. For the Soviets, it was unparalleled recruitment of agents indispensable for the pursuit of a major oil policy (especially in the Near and Middle East) and also to lay the possible foundations for expansion towards Turkey, where the Georgians had always been well established.
In our opinion, the American authorities must attach great importance to this issue, which goes far beyond the framework of the small Caucasian people. We point out that it will be very difficult for them to investigate the Caucasus case on their own because of the innate mistrust of all Caucasians, especially in the current circumstances. On the other hand, since the Georgians will certainly be given the mission to make contact with the Ukrainians (to inquire and to accentuate their internal chaos), it will be easier for us to deal with them.

We believe that the American Administration is as interested in this question as the financial circles of Wall Street, against which precisely a number of these Georgians "reconciled" with the Soviets will be used. We suggest that there could be collaboration in this area between the US administration, Wall Street circles (through you exclusively), and us. This would require a small autonomous organization, the possibility of sending us all the documents relating to this question, the possibility of encouraging us to travel sometimes for collaborators whom we would have in sight for this purpose in France and England), and the granting of independent credits.

This first dossier that we are communicating today is only the beginning. The complexity of the problems raised is such that it takes a lot of work and time to finalize the next file.

March 13, 1947.




Haidar Bammate is a Caucasian (Circassian) Montagnarde of the Mohammedan religion, about 55-60 years old. He is a very intelligent, almost evil, very cultured, very racial character - authoritarian, violent, false, and cunning. His career is very interesting.

Before the Russian Revolution, he belonged to the cadres of the imperial administration of the Caucasus- secretary or head of the chancellery or Viceroy (governor-general) of the Caucasus. At a time when, after 1917, the Caucasus was striving towards its autonomy and towards the respective independence of the nations that compose it (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, North Caucasus), Bammate understood a reason for its ties with the former tsarist regime, it could not find a place within the Transcaucasian revolution. He then went to Turkey (which then demanded: substantial annexations to the Caucasus and especially Georgia), and declared himself in favor of the annexation of the Caucasus to the Ottoman Empire. He works in particular against the Caucasian delegation which is negotiating peace with Turkey. He acquired a very prominent place in Turkey, but the rise of the latter and that of the central powers obliged him to leave and he went to Berlin.

He married Princess Zeinabe Chermojewa belonging to one of the largest oil families in the Caucasus, a family very close to the famous and mysterious Gulbekian.

In Berlin, where the most famous Arab conspirators hide, he did not mix with them (except perhaps with Schekib Arslan, the Syrian agitator, currently in Geneva and with whom he still maintains relations), but He practiced a long and wise policy of waiting.

Around 1927-28, Bammate appeared in Paris and mingled with the Caucasian movement. First of all, thanks to the contacts established with the Pole, he entered as a representative of the North Caucasus in the Prometheus group. As is well known, the Caucasian members of the Prometheus group were essentially socialists, whether it was the Georgian Menshevik government in exile of Noah Jordania, or the "Mussavat" Azerbaijan party (Ali Mardan bey Toptchibaschi president of the National Council, Rasulzade, part of Mussavat, Mir Yakoub bey, Ali bey Atamalibekoff), or the Armenian group of Mr. Shatiasian and Jamalian (father).

Bammate, judging on the one hand that Menshevism was an outdated platform, on the other hand, that The Georgians invaded Prometheus too much, soon separated from the Caucasians of this group while maintaining friendly contacts with the Ukrainians (Prokopovitch, Shulgein, Smal-Stocki, etc.) and the Turkestanians (Mustapha Bey Chokai-Oghly) Prometheans.

At the end of 1929, He founded in Paris- probably thanks to funds from the family of his wife Tchermojew - a magazine, in Russian, "The Independent Caucasus", where he began to defend the ideas of a pan-Caucasian nationalism, focused on a theoretical pan-Turkism. In the beginning, He had very few collaborators and readers, but as a moneyed polemicist, a journalist of exceptional talent, it does not take long by his writings- which outclassed the poor arsenal of Caucasian Menshevik articles of Prometheus- to shout a real public eager to say it. Its purpose was to attract national opposition from the Caucasus (Georgian nationalists: General Kvinitadze and Constantin Kedia; Muslim or Turkish nationalists from the Caucasus: Ali Khan Kantemir and Tambi Elekhoti), to obtain the plans of the big Caucasian oil companies (in practice by its attachment Tchermojew-Gulbekian, It was a question of giving preference to the German firm Nobel and consequently Lord Doterding, which proceeded to the repurchase of the shares Nobel), to form a coherent group, and to tie as representative of this group relations with one or more Powers "who have a future ahead of them".

His activity would be doubled, journalistic on the one hand, his magazine continuing to appear, organizer on the other hand, He would travel, would go to Berlin, to Rome, to Turkey, would set in motion everyone enormous of relations which he had. But its center remained fixed in Paris.

Around the year 1931-1932 the number of his followers increased considerably (he could already give them princely treatments at the scale of emigration). If the Georgian nationalist opposition did not adhere to his incorporates (reserving as a group freedom of action), it was nevertheless with him and under his leadership that it manifested itself most coherently. The Georgian opposition gave Bammate representatives Data Vachnadze, General Kvinitadze, Michael Kedia (who did not write but represented his uncle Konstantine), Avalishvili, Sagirashvili, etc. The Muslim and Turkish nationalists (It should be remembered that the Caucasian migration of Muslims or belonging to the Turkish race was very few in number, so the Azerbaijanis and Caucasian Montagnards - i.e. Ossetians, Abkhasians Circassians, etc. - had to group to balance the Christian emigrants of the Caucasus - ie the Georgians and the Armenians -) adhere individually.

At the end of 1933, Bammate obtained the support of the Third Reich, he established valuable contacts with the Japanese, maintained cordial relations with the Italian fascists, and always remained in very much contact with the Turks and the Poles. From the beginning of 1934 his group took the name "Caucasus", it published three monthly magazines (in Russian, French, and German), a quarterly issue in English, non-periodical editions in Turkish, and various Caucasian languages.

The "Caucasus" group became powerful, enjoying great support and having considerable ramifications throughout the Near and Middle East. He often appeared behind the scenes of the League of Nations.

Around 1937, Bammate decided (after the arrival of the popular front in power) to leave Paris, he set up his editorial offices in Berlin but prepared a room on the ground in Lausanne. (Interestingly, when war broke out, despite Bammate's obvious Germanophile ties, none of his friends in France would be worried, but would instead enjoy powerful protections).

It was Bammate who introduced the Japanese (Inagaki, Consul General in Geneva, and M. Sigimura) into the 1st milieu of anti-Soviet non-Russian emigration. This was a separate chapter and very interesting in its activity. In his journals, he devoted a great deal of space to the defense of the Pan-Turanian idea, dear to the emigrant representatives and which also gave his publications a little racist tinge.

In August 1929, following the conclusion of the German-Soviet pact, the Germans asked Bammate to cease publication and leave Germany. He then settled permanently in Switzerland, in Lausanne.

Bammate defended in his magazines the Ukrainians and the Turkestanians without distinction of political parties, while he criticized and attacked with extreme violence all the Caucasian Mensheviks - especially Jordania and Gegechkori.

At about the same time (summer 1939), Michel Kedia, also returning from Berlin to Paris, came to see him on behalf of the Georgian nationalist group and entered into a rather violent conflict with Bammate, officially because the Georgian cause was stifled in the general framework of the Caucasus and sacrificed to the detriment of the Turks and Muslims. The real reason for the conflict, however, was that a group of Georgian Nazis (numerically weak but powerfully supported) risked demagogic one-upmanship against the Georgian nationalists. Bammate was not enthusiastic about allowing the latter to respond.

Although he remained in Switzerland, Bammate retained very powerful support in Germany, including that of his personal friend Count Schullenburg, Reich Ambassador in Moscow and whom he had known at the time when the diplomat had been German consul in Tiflis while he was himself secretary to the vice-roi. However, general relations with the Germans were cold until the end of 1940.

In the spring of 1941, when it became clear that the Germans were going to engage in the Eastern War, Bammate was officially invited to Berlin. He witnessed the preparations for war, often consulted, and had numerous conversations with the main leaders of the Reich and with the men already appointed for the administration of the future occupied territories. He observed everything with his lucid and intelligent eye. It seems that the Germans have made very flattering proposals to him. He left Berlin in June 1941 and returned to Switzerland. It was certain that Michel Kédia despite his presence in Berlin and had to set a lot of pitfalls, because Bammate was a formidable competitor, and a man of great format capable of playing the role of führer of the Caucasians. But it was unlikely that the intrigues of other Caucasians influenced Bammate's decision to return to Switzerland.

Back in Switzerland, he was the first, at the very moment when the Wehrmacht was shaking victoriously towards the East, the diagnosis of the inevitable German defeat (Bammate's opinion was based on a very heavy point on the Japanese decision not to intervene on the side of Germany against the USSR). He depicts the disorganization of the German internal structure, of the already irreducible opposition between the Army and the Nazi Party, the ridiculous program intended for the East (in this regard he foresees the hostility of the conquered populations, the training of the partisans and the difficulties in transporting supplies to the front lines), he notes all the symptoms of the future defeat. The detailed account he gave at that time has surnamed very few people (it is the Poles who have this information for us) is absolutely striking. We do not know whether the American and British representatives in Switzerland were then aware of Bammate's report (either directly or through the Poles), in any case, this text was intended to be of primary use.

Public political life through the Caucasian forum of Bammate seemed ended. He was mainly concerned with strengthening his personal situation. He wrote a book on Islam (published in 1945 by Payot) and had the pages appear in the Swiss Germanophile monthly "Le Mois Suisse". He became a diplomat, and possessor of the Afghan passport for a long time. In 1943, he became responsible for the affairs of Afghanistan in Bern. He maintained disinterested contacts with the Poles (in 1943, thanks to the Afghan diplomatic courier, he had payments made in France for their Resistance and their Intelligence Service), the Baltics, and the Ukrainians. He refrained from passing judgment on Caucasian politics (in 1945 when Kedia and his friends came to Switzerland, he had only purely friendly relations with his compatriot and former collaborator Ali Khan Kantemir and Ali Bey Atamalibekoff). He participated in major financial affairs.

In May 1946, his wife left for New York, where his brothers Chermojew lived.

Bammate was a member of the International Diplomatic Academy (A.F. Frangulis), and had contributed to the Academy's dictionary.

Istanbul, 29 July 2023