Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: After I offered to rebury Lenin in Kalmykia, I received a letter of thanks from… the Swiss Communist Party

- According to some studies, the Kalmyks have family ties with the Ukrainian Cossacks...

- Our republic, back in the days of the USSR, ranked first in interethnic marriages. I myself am a hereditary Don Cossack. There was a collective farm named after my relative Kirsan Ilyumzhinov in the Rostov region, on the Ukraine border. By the way, the yellow stripe on the flag of the Don Cossacks is in honour of the Kalmyks.
There were Kalmyks in the first three Cossack regiments that entered Paris in 1814. Eyewitnesses wrote that they expected to see bearded Russians, but narrow-eyed people with spears came on camels. Back in 1609, the Kalmyk Khan signed his first international treaty with Tsar Vasily Shuisky on friendship and cooperation. In the Battle of Poltava, Kalmyk regiments fought under Russian banners. Peter I still asked then: “Why are they always shouting “hurray”?” They explained him that “hurray” in Kalmyk means “forward”. Peter liked this battle cry, and he introduced it in the Russian army, and later the "hurray" spread throughout the world.
– It is known that Vladimir Ilyich Lenin also had Kalmyk roots...

- Lenin's paternal grandmother Anna Smirnova is a Kalmyk. By the way, Vladimir Ilyich was fond of chess; he is shown at the chessboard on many paintings and photographs. Therefore, when some incomprehensible discussion began in the Russian State Duma about taking Lenin's body out of the mausoleum, I suggested that the leader be reburied in Elista. I said it as if in jest, but immediately there were reports in the press that some Kalmyk businessman was already going to charge five dollars per person for entering the new mausoleum. Representatives of the Communist Party of Russia immediately protested - they said, they will not allow encroachment on our shrines. But I received a letter of thanks from the Swiss Communist Party, in which they promised all kinds of support.