Rimma Kazakova

Russian poet

Today, at a time when many politicians are engaged in intrigues, Heydar Aliyev is doing invaluable work for the protection of eternal values.

Heydar Aliyev will always live in the hearts of all the people who had the honor of meeting him: I believe that he is one of the most prominent political figures of our time.

Heydar Aliyev was always very interested in literature, once he even visited the Writers’ Union. This meeting allowed the writers to get to know him better as a very intelligent, knowledgeable person, accurately and deeply assessing the significance of culture for society.

Any politician is judged by time and his people. Based on what we saw during the days of Heydar Aliyev’s funeral, we can say literally: the people loved and appreciated him. He did a lot for his people, and therefore he cannot be underestimated as an outstanding son of his nation.

Heydar Aliyev personally attracted my attention with his invincible character. He found himself in a very difficult situation, and hardly any of the politicians could react to his life and destiny with such vivacity, courage and bravery. He really disobeyed fate. You see, I think this is a very valuable quality. He lived in Nakhchivan for a long time, and finally the day came when his native people called him to head the state again and successfully lead the country forward.

I was lucky, I met Heydar Aliyev several times in private. Of course, it was his generosity to me. He personally invited me and a number of my friends to the anniversary of the great Azerbaijani poet Fuzuli. During a party after the anniversary, a man came up to me and said that Heydar Aliev wanted to talk to me. Of course, it was a great honor for me, because it is always interesting to communicate with such an intelligent person, and this is especially important for an author. We talked, I remember, I asked with feminine courage: “Does it seem to me that Russia has an unfair attitude towards Azerbaijan and personally towards Aliyev?” He told me: “I understand that. But there will come a time when it won’t.” I was surprised that Heydar Aliyev did not continue the conversation on how he was harmed and wronged. However, at that time, even our newspapers wrote: “In any case, you need to understand what Azerbaijan is. Azerbaijan means oil. This republic played a very important role in the Soviet state, it is necessary to restore and strengthen good relations with Azerbaijan”. Of course, a lot has happened to Azerbaijan, and every normal person understands that 20 January tragedy occurred in Baku, but it was impossible to understand why the troops entered the city and why they started killing both Azerbaijanis and Russians, it was a great national tragedy. You see, like this sometimes stupid politicians can destroy the relations between nations once and for all. This cannot but cause sadness and regret. But it seems to me that all this is not yet fully evaluated.

When Heydar Aliyev came to power in his country, I believe that one of his greatest merits was to stop the war in Karabakh, the bloodshed was stopped by his efforts. In addition, he really managed to get a new status for the Republic of Azerbaijan in the international arena. This is an unparalleled service, because the violation of national dignity is the saddest thing in life. Often this happens not through the fault of people, society or the state, but due to various circumstances. Preventing such situations and overcoming them is a great skill of a leader and a politician.

I remember the celebrations, in which I also participated, on the occasion of the first oil extraction in Azerbaijan. I saw how all this was celebrated in Azerbaijan with great joy, dignity and pride, how Heydar Aliyev was loved.

I also remember participation in the evening dedicated to my favorite poet Bakhtiyar Vahabzade. As you know, I translated his works. At that event, Heydar Aliyev did me a great honor with a short conversation. The words that he said to me left a deep imprint in my heart for life and took a special place there.

Several years ago, together with my colleagues, I prepared a documentary film about Heydar Aliyev. Too bad this movie didn’t come out. However, Heydar Aliyev did me the honor of giving an interview and said: look, I am not doing interview with anyone, but I will give an interview to Rimma. I will always remember this interview. There were many questions in the interview and quite a few insightful and informative answers. I especially remember one question and his answer: “What kind of people do you think our people are, what kind of mentality do they have?” He thought for a while, then with deep conviction and great pride he said: “My people are very kind, open-hearted, generous, and always eager for science and knowledge.” “Heydar Aliyev, I can say these words about our people, the Russian people!” He replied, “Have you ever seen a leader or a person who said anything else about his people?”

I always followed the situation in Azerbaijan and looked at the republic through the eyes of my friends there, of course, Heydar Aliyev was the brightest star in this galaxy. It was very interesting for me to observe how he worked.

It seems to me that our President Vladimir Putin also admired Heydar Aliyev, we saw this to some extent in Putin’s attitude towards his son Ilham Aliyev when he was appointed prime minister of the republic. During Vladimir Putin’s meeting with Ilham Aliyev, I noticed that our president has never been as friendly, caring, and sincere as he was with Ilham Aliyev. I saw his fraternal attitude towards Ilham Aliyev, it was felt even on the screen. The election of Ilham Aliyev as President is very good for the republic. After all, it is not a secret for anyone that Ilham Aliyev is a very educated person and has high human qualities. It seems to me that the father’s son could not be otherwise. I hope that the work begun by Heydar Aliyev and in which his son participated in one way or another will be continued and new successes will be achieved.