"Children of war! Mind disturbed." Why they shoot and fight at weddings in Chechnya
60-year-old Chechen user of Facebook Adani Umaev, actively defending the customs and traditions of his people, explained the roots of wedding traditions, which sometimes turn into fatal incidents.
A video from the Chechen wedding, where a massive fight with shooting took place, quickly spread in social networks at the beginning of the week and caused a wide response.
Initially, the video with the headline The Harsh Chechen Wedding appeared on Adam Ozdoev's Facebook. In the video, the white car of the bride is going through the gate, after which the excited young people start a mass fight for no apparent reason. Shots in the air throughout the video complete the picture. Later it turned out that according to Chechen traditions it is considered honorable if the car drove into the cortege immediately after the bride's car. The person who succeeds gets a reward in the form of a large sum of money or a separate table, where his friends will sit.
The mass brawl at the wedding ceremony in Chechnya made a strong impression on the social network users. Accusations of savagery fell upon representatives of the Chechen people. Meanwhile, the user of Facebook from Grozny Adani Umaev wrote under the post about this incident that such skirmishes for the right to go first after the bride's car occur in his homeland on a regular basis.
"It is difficult to explain because it is transmitted at the gene level. These are the rules and traditions from the time of horse riding," he said.
In an interview with Lenta.ru, Umaev explained his comment and told why such incidents at Chechen weddings are not uncommon.
First of all, he noted that the main character of the video, most likely was fake - not a relative of the new weds and even not an honored guest. According to Umaev, this is indicated by the fact that the young man who started the fight was in sports pants, which is unacceptable for relatives – even the poorest of them are dressed according to the event.
The very competition for the right to go first after a bride's car is an old custom, which goes back to the time when the bride was often kidnapped. Today theatrical thefts are only a part of the celebration, but for guests and relatives it was considered the most honorable to follow her, Umaev explained.
"Now it has become like a sport. People simply forget that now they do not have horses, but powerful cars, create car accidents – it happens, even with a fatal outcome. But it doesn't stop young people, although none of them wants to overshadow the holiday," Adani Umaev said.
Umaev condemned what happened on this video, entirely laying the blame for the clash on the instigator of the fight, who, in his words, apparently wedged into the wedding cortege on the road and brought the guests of the ceremony to a state of extreme bitterness, provoking an "emotional explosion."
"On the other hand, they are children of war! Their mind is disturbed. I myself watched death many times, buried those who I loved. My mother collected the brains of her cousin with her hands. I myself talk at times very impulsively, the reason for this is the experience I and my people have had," said Adani Umaev.
According to Umaev, in many respects, another characteristic feature of Chechen weddings is connected with the legacy of the war - the shooting in the air. Often, it becomes the cause of accidents, including fatalities.
And although the head of the republic Ramzan Kadyrov tries to fight it with fines, shooting at weddings in Chechnya has always happened, happens now and will happen in the future.
"After all, our people spent their time in constant wars. Not from bloodthirstiness but because our region is situated like that. For this reason, we love weapons and we know how to handle them," Adani Umaev explained. However, he immediately remembered the incident when a drunken law enforcement officer during a dance at a wedding took out a gun and accidentally shot a girl who herself was soon to get married. However, he did not receive any punishment – influential intercessors intervened, and the family of the deceased forgave him.
In a conversation with Lenta.ru Umaev also noted that he personally "punishes like a man" for comparing Chechens with animals and other manifestations of hatred that flooded the Internet after the publication of the video.
"I even wrote a personal message to one of the commentators that one has to answer for his words, and even more so for insults to my people. Here this nit should get what he deserves. I wrote to him: "Choose a meeting place, a city, and I'll send people there by phone. No problem! But as a wise and experienced human, I will tell you – and so that young Chechens read it: the best revenge is contempt in the womb of his insignificance! That's all!"
On the practice of resolving such conflicts, Umaev said that the elders decide who is right and who is guilty. It is not common to write statements about bodily injuries to the police after such fights. But the guilty one will be punished unequivocally, not with beatings, but with "a meaningful word, because it can cause a person more pain than a fist."
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