Mongolian Foreign Minister B.Batsetseg visited Russia. As the participants in the meeting said that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was surprised that his Mongolian counterpart was a woman half his age. They say that he was even a little confused when the Mongolian woman did not speak to him in Russian, like all her predecessors (although she speaks Russian perfectly). The Russian minister spoke about Mongolia's entry into the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), but Ms Battsetseg said that her country is not interested in either entering the SCO or participating in the Eurasian Economic Union.

In general, she did not show any shyness at a meeting with S. Lavrov, and communicated with him on an equal footing, as she would communicate with any other foreigner or her compatriot. For the Russian elite, this is a new phenomenon that no one has heard of before.

This woman was not intimidated of a high-ranking Russian (Soviet) official, although her predecessors had reasons to do so.

Soviet / Russian Foreign Ministers and Mongolia

G. Chicherin, the first Soviet Minister (people's commissar) of Foreign Affairs, adhered to a tough line - under no circumstances to recognize the independence of Mongolia and not to establish diplomatic relations with it. A sufficient number of documents have survived that testify to his position. The next minister, M. Litvinov, did not deal with the problems of Mongolia - Stalin solved them personally, and in the Politburo of the CPSU (b), decisions on Mongolia were made by a commission headed by K. Voroshilov.

V. Molotov not only headed the Soviet government, but also led the People's Commissariat for Foreign Affairs of the USSR. He was one of the initiators of both the Great Terror in Mongolia and the Soviet-Japanese war at Khalkhin Gol. In 1947, when Mongolia applied to join the UN and sent a delegation led by First Secretary of the MPRP Central Committee Yuri Tsedenbal to New York, Molotov told him in Paris: “Your country will not be admitted to the UN, but since you have already arrived here, so acquaint yourself with the world and go back. " However, after the death of H. Choibalsan, Molotov reproached Tsedenbal for trying to annex the country to the Soviet Union (Tsedenbal filed three petitions for Mongolia to join the USSR; the unfortunate ignoramus did not know that the borders were established in Tehran, Yalta and Potsdam ...).

Mongolia became a member of the UN only in 1961, at the same time as the former African colonies that gained independence that year.

A. Gromyko continuously headed the Soviet Foreign Ministry for almost 30 years. His attitude towards Mongolia can hardly be called friendly. He has repeatedly thwarted Mongolian attempts to establish diplomatic relations with the United States, which it has undertaken from time to time. Gromyko was also very suspicious of Mongolia's establishment of diplomatic relations with Great Britain and Japan, he feared their expansion and created various obstacles to these relations. In 1984, he personally supervised the removal of Tsedenbal from power (the Soviet General Secretary K. Chernenko was in the hospital, and he had no time for Mongolia) and his placement under house arrest in Moscow.

E. Shevardnadze was the first Foreign Minister of the Soviet Union to pay an official visit to Mongolia. He gave the go-ahead to establish relations with the United States, and thereby lifted Gromyko's embargo.

A. Kozyrev was the first Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union. This was the time when the Russians forgot about Mongolia, and all their attention was turned to the West. Eyewitnesses say how during the UN Session, when, after numerous petitions, Kozyrev received the Mongolian delegation, he spent most of the meeting flirting with the waitress, showing obvious disdain for his interlocutors.

The visit of E. Primakov, the first orientalist at the post of Foreign Minister, to Mongolia immediately after his appointment as minister, was apparently undertaken to study the political orientation of the democrats who first time came to power in Mongolia.

The fact that the current minister Sergei Lavrov began to pay obvious attention to and treat Mongolia favorably must be connected with the turn of Russia's foreign policy towards the East, caused by the deterioration of its relations with the West. The main political goals he pursues with regard to Mongolia are to exert pressure to join the SCO, criticize its so-called "third neighbor" policy, and express dissatisfaction with the work of the Mongolian UN peacekeepers in Iraq, Afghanistan and other countries. This is also the prevention of Mongolia's support in the UN for criticism of Russia in relation to Crimea. During his official visit to Mongolia, Lavrov walked down the gangplank in jeans and sneakers, bouncing as if exercising, and did not walk down the red carpet laid in his honor, which was perceived as a clear disregard.

С.Лавров в Монголии

Lavrov in Mongolia

Ambassadors of the USSR and Russia in Mongolia

Consul Y. Shishmarev became the first permanent representative in the capital of Mongolia in 1862. He lived here for 40 years and set a record in the history of diplomacy. Later, Russian consuls appeared in Khovda and Ulyasutai.

Здание Генерального консульства Российской империи в Урге

Building of the Consulate General of the Russian Empire in Urga

The first consul appointed by the Soviet government was O. Makstenek. Since a representative of the Kolchak government was already in the country, the Mongols refused to accept Maksteneck, and he settled in the border Troitskosavsk, where he participated in the founding of the Mongolian People's Party (later - the Mongolian People's Revolutionary, MPRP). He also organized the Mongolian People's Revolutionary Army and the Mongolian government in exile.

The first Soviet-Russian representative appointed to Mongolia was Alexei Vasiliev, who had previously worked in Mongolia. He became the first plenipotentiary, not consul. The Soviet Union did not recognize the independence of Mongolia until 1946, so the representative was called the plenipotentiary. In Soviet times, representatives of the republics that were part of the Soviet Union had their representatives in Moscow, Moscow also had its representatives in these parts, and now the constituent entities of the Russian Federation have representations in Moscow. So, until 1946, relations between the USSR and Mongolia were at the same level. All plenipotentiary representatives of the USSR in Mongolia were servicemen appointed by the People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs (NKVD) of the USSR.

At that time, Mongolia was actually ruled by Rinchino and the representative of the Comintern T. Ryskulov, but Vasiliev concentrated all power in his hands. After the assassination of Prime Minister Danzan, he openly told the delegates of the 3rd Congress of the MPP: “As soon as we found the disorder, we corrected it in a businesslike manner ... To avoid more bloodshed, it is necessary to eliminate one or two people.” came to Prime Minister Tserendorzh and demanded: "Now you must create a republic in order to please the Comintern."

Since that time, Moscow's plenipotentiaries in Ulan Bator have become direct executors of the USSR's policy in Mongolia. Plenipotentiaries P. Nikiforov, A. Okhtin and S. Chutskaev exercised the leadership of the country on the spot. Brigadier commissar V. Tairov, who arrived in 1935, was not only a plenipotentiary: for two years he had been preparing for the war on Khalkhin Gol.

S. Mironov, who became plenipotentiary in the fall of 1937, flooded Mongolia with blood. He was the Commissioner of State Security and a member of the troika, personally supervising the arrest of about 60,000 people (Population of Mongolia was estimated at 700,000. 30,000 people were killed. Among them there were pregnant women), the massacres of intellectuals, party and state leaders, the extermination of lamas and the destruction of about 800 monasteries. Seven months of his stay in Mongolia resulted in a veritable genocide. He has not yet been rehabilitated, as he is considered the leader of the repression against the Mongol people. After Mironov was recalled (and shot), the new plenipotentiary M. Golubchik continued what his predecessor had begun.

In the fall of 1939, Major General of the NKVD I. Ivanov arrived in Mongolia as a plenipotentiary representative. He began his work by arresting his predecessor, Golubchik. Ivanov's cycle was the restoration of Mongolia, where the entire intelligentsia was destroyed, all the servants of the monasteries and the traditional aristocracy were exterminated, cadres of all state institutions were eliminated. He was instructed to promote Tsedenbal, a Komsomol member and informant of the NKVD, with whom Moscow decided to replace Choibalsan. However, in the process of his mentoring, Ivanov turned his ward into an alcoholic. Compared to his predecessors, Ivanov was much more involved in all aspects of the internal life of Mongolia. He was the first ambassador to Mongolia when the Soviet Union officially recognized Mongolia's independence and established diplomatic relations with it on February 28, 1946.

N. Vazhnov was ambassador to Mongolia for only a year (1947-48), he managed to firmly tie Tsedenbal to the USSR: he arranged a marriage of Tsedenbal and his relative A. Filatova, a Ryazan Komsomol activist.

Ю.Цеденбал с А.Филатовой

Tsedenbal with Filatova

Then for three years he was the ambassador of Yuri Prykhodov. Since Mongolia has already become "tame", Moscow has begun to appoint regional party leaders as ambassadors to Mongolia as a reward. All ambassadors were former party workers from the provinces - G. Ivannikov from Turkmenistan, V. Pisarev from Volgograd, A. Khvorostukhin from Buryatia, L. Soloviev, S. Shchetinin from Irkutsk, A. Smirnov from Chita, K. Fomichenko from Chelyabinsk, V. Sitnikov from Kemerovo, etc. Their responsibilities were to monitor whether there were any deviations from the path to communism, or ideological blunders in relation to the Soviet Union. There were also such ambassadors who accompanied Tsedenbal, wherever he went - as either an overseer or a bodyguard.

Three ambassadors from this period can be considered. V. Molotov was sent as ambassador to Mongolia for participating in an anti-party group: N. Khrushchev considered this a harsh punishment. To justify himself, Molotov immediately after his arrival, without any reason, demanded that Mongolia would give some part of its territory to the USSR. He achieved his goal with intimidation, insults, threats and pressure. Applying Stalin's methods of humiliation and desecration of both the individual and the country as a whole, he annexed the areas where the first person (First Party Secretary) of Mongolia, Tsedenbal, as well as the second person in the state, Tsend (second party secretary), who signed an agreement on the annexed territories, were born. The then Minister of Foreign Affairs Avarzed, who refused to transfer plots of territory (“I can't, because this is my homeland,” he said), was fired and sent to work as a truck driver.

Посол СССР в МНР Вячеслав Молотов с супругой Полиной Жемчужиной и Генеральный секретарь ЦК МНРП Юмжаагийн Цеденбал с супругой Анастасией Цеденбал-Филатовой. Окрестности Улан-Батора

USSR Ambassador to the MPR Vyacheslav Molotov with his wife Polina Zhemchuzhina and First Secretary of the MPRP Central Committee Yumzhaagiin Tsedenbal with his wife Anastasia Tsedenbal-Filatova. Outskirts of Ulan Bator

K. Rusakov, who from a young age held high posts and was repeatedly appointed minister, was sent as ambassador for a short period of time, first to Poland and then to Mongolia, as if for an internship before his appointment as secretary of the Central Committee for relations with socialist countries.

In 1983, Gromyko unexpectedly appointed S. Pavlov, a high-ranking Soviet official who had previously served as chairman of the Komsomol and then chairman of the Sports Committee, as ambassador to Mongolia. Tsedenbal, whose mental abilities by that time had weakened, did not accept the policy of Brezhnev's successors, who, after many years of hostility, tried to normalize relations with China, and together with his wife built all sorts of intrigues against China. At that time, Mongolia's foreign policy was based on the principle of "countering two threats - China and nationalism." Therefore, Pavlov was given the task of immediately eliminating Tsedenbal. He quickly and successfully completed this task.

In 1992, Russia for the first time sent an international specialist S. Razov as an ambassador to Mongolia. As a sinologist, Razov later became Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. The next ambassador, Oleg Derkovsky, was rumored to have fallen out of favor when Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Mongolia in 2006. Since 2004, Western investors have begun to expand their activities in the country. As a result, new deposits of natural resources were discovered, and Mongolia quickly moved from the category of extremely poor countries to moderately developed ones. It was at this time that Vladimir Putin visited, but the ambassador, who had worked in Mongolia for 7 years, was poorly informed about everything that was happening in the country. He was immediately fired.

Following the Mongolian-speaking Pavlov and the former governor of the Irkutsk region B. Govorin, in 2013 the international specialist Iskander Azizov became the ambassador to Mongolia.

Встреча вице-министра иностранных дел Монголии Б.Мунхжина с послом РФ И.К.Азизовым

Meeting of the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia B. Munkhzhin with the Ambassador of the Russian Federation I.K. Azizov

He has been here for the eighth year. Interestingly, his approach to Mongolia is similar to that of the plenipotentiaries of the Soviet era. For example, he officially declared about "the need to firmly fight those who harm the Mongolian-Russian friendship." Or, despite the fact that some Mongolian TV channels broadcast a military parade in Moscow, he demanded that the parade be broadcasted on national television channel, reproached and insulted the head of the TV company in the press, who disobeyed him. At one of the receptions, a drunken diplomat from the Russian embassy brutally beat a famous Mongolian singer. The singer went to the hospital for a long time. It was reported that the ambassador who was at the reception calmly watched the fight. This happened in front of many people, and the recording was shown on television and told about it in the media. No action was taken against the bully diplomat, he was only hastily sent home. There seems to be no need to deliberately worsen relations between the two countries in this way.

Overcoming fear

Foreigners believe that Mongols can be arrogant in front of anyone, and that they have no inferiority complex at all. Exposing his former greatness, the Mongol can jump up and shout: "If we are talking about this, so our Genghis Khan ...". The Chinese say, "Mongol bragging is worse than Chinese fury." The Mongols have always looked down on the Chinese, with whom they have been neighbors for thousands of years, and evaluate them through the prism of the historical past. They never put Americans, Japanese, and Europeans ahead of themselves. But the Mongols are afraid to death of the Russians (Soviet people). The singer, who was beaten and seriously injured by a Russian diplomat, spoke in dismay from his hospital bed: "This should have nothing to do with Mongolian-Russian friendship." His father, a well-known Mongolian choreographer, has repeatedly stated in the media that the incident should not harm the friendship between Mongolia and Russia. The audience chose to remain silent. If the perpetrator of this brutal beating was not a Russian, but another foreigner, especially a Chinese, the Mongols would have called for war!

The fear of the recent past still lingers in the minds of the people even after 30 years of Mongolia's democratic development. Several generations of Mongols have a vivid memory of the fact that people went to jail for the slightest criticism of the Soviet Union.

Between 1960 and 1990, 55,000 Mongols studied in various educational institutions in the Soviet Union, most of them in vocational schools. 16 thousand of them have acquired higher education there. But over the past 30 years, several times more Mongols have been educated in Japan, China, Korea, the United States and Europe. In other words, the structure and composition of Mongolian society is now changing dramatically. Currently, more people speak Korean than Russian. The new generation is more drawn to Western and American cultures than to Russia. Neither current Russian leaders nor some Mongolian politicians still understand this. In connection with the pandemic, the government of Mongolia, as a gesture of goodwill, sent small gifts to Russia, China, the United States and India. Everyone expressed their gratitude and covered this event in the media. But on the central television of Russia it was reported that, they say, “the poorest Mongols in this world give us gifts, ha-ha-ha-ha-ha”. And all TV companies in Russia belong to the government or completely controlled by it!

Minister Battsetseg is a representative of the new generation of Mongolia. She, most likely, knows little about the 100-year history of Russian-Mongolian relations - she did not live in that difficult period. Born and raised in rural areas, Prime Minister Oyun-Erdene is familiar with what happened after the 90s, but also knows little about that time. They are not at all hostile to Russia, and as neighbors want to have good relations with both China and Russia. But - only an equal relationship. The Mongolian government respects the interests of its neighbors, but puts the interests of its nation first. This is not national selfishness, like Trump's selfishness with his "America First", it is simply the pursuit of equality and mutually beneficial relationships. New generation of Mongolia do not take sides with Americans, Russians, Chinese, or Japanese, as some of our neighbors suspect. Their heart belong to Mongolia. Of course, as in any country, there are also "money lovers".

The Mongols do not pin any particular hopes on the United States: no American investments have come to Mongolia in the 40 years that have passed since the establishment of diplomatic relations. And many Americans have no idea where Mongolia is.

To date, there is no direct threat to Mongolia's independence. The demarcation of the borders with Russia and China was approved in 1997. However, the Mongols fear to find themselves in a situation again, similar to the 200-year period under the Manchu dynasty or the 100-year period of influence of Russia and the Soviet Union. It is the policy of the Mongolian governments to maintain the very best relations with their two neighbors, as well as expand relations with all other countries. Mongols call this the policy of the third neighbor. Which does not mean at all that Mongolia will side with the United States, or will ignore its neighbors.

The democratic system is based on the universal consent of the people. Therefore, success will always alternate with failure. The Mongolian people do not want to abandon the already chosen path, despite the fact that they sometimes suffer failures, at which our neighbors sometimes laugh. After all, Mongolia is the only country in the vast expanse from the Pacific Ocean to the Black Sea, from the Arctic Ocean to the Indian Ocean with an independent democratic system (although it sounds ridiculous to some). She does not interfere in other people's affairs and does no harm to anyone - so why should she not live the way she wants?

Since ancient times, the Mongols believed that it is better to suffer on their own than to be blissful for someone else's.