Memorie.al publishes the unknown story of Fadil Spahi, originally from the village of Kolesjan in the district of Kukës, who during the war, when he was a student at the gymnasium in Shkodra and a boarder in “Malet tona” together with Emin Durak, was connects with the youth groups of that city, where he was arrested and imprisoned, after taking part in the demonstration of November 28, 1939. Fadili’s long odyssey in several high schools in the country, such as in Shkodër, Tirana and Gjirokastër, where he was expelled several times from school and was arrested due to his participation in the Anti-Fascist National Liberation Movement, until the end of 1944, he enlisted as a partisan in the River Battalion (where his father, Rifat Spahiu, was the Chairman of the National Liberation Council of the District of Kukës), participating also in the war for the liberation of Tirana, in November ’44. Fadil’s participation in the action for the construction of the Brčko-Banović railway in Bosnia in September 1946, where he also began his higher studies at the Faculty of Medicine in Sarajevo, from where he would leave in 1949, for the Soviet Union, where he would graduate from the Moscow Medical University, receiving the degree of “Candidate of Medical Sciences”. Fadili’s return to Albania and his passionate and dedicated work at the Civil Hospital of Tirana, he made a big name as a doctor and as a lecturer at the Faculty of Medicine, from where he would be expelled as an “enemy of the people”, first in Gramsh and then in Tepelena, where he was arrested, causing him to suffer for 18 years in the prisons of Enver Hoxha’s communist regime.
Continues from last issue
He is accused of being an “agent of the Russians” and sentenced to 18 years in prison
After the arrest, Fadil was sent to the Internal Affairs Branch of Gramsci, where the investigative process immediately began against him, asking him to admit that “he is an enemy of the party and an agent of the Russians, that he is an enemy of the people, that he does not agree with the line of the Party”, and other accusations of this nature. The investigative process against him was quite brutal and lasted four months. After that, Fadil was brought to court where he was sentenced to 18 years of imprisonment, with completely fabricated charges. After the sentencing, Fadil was first sent to the prison in Bulqiza and then transferred to the prison in Spaçi, where he performed the duties of a doctor, always being with his co-sufferers. (At this time, his wife had divorced him). In the autumn of 1986, when he was 60 years old, he was released from prison, exhausted, but he still had a belief that he could be helped to start over as a doctor, since he did not want to accept retirement age. He believed in those few former friends who had been able to survive the dictatorship. Indeed, no one could help him. Since that time, he lives with a small pension in his apartment somewhere near the Albanian Radio and Television, where even though he is already 95 years old and with a life full of suffering and vicissitudes, he does not take the books and medical literature out of his hands, to which he devoted his whole life.
The article of the Russian newspaper “PRAVDA” about the Albanian graduate doctor
“Fadil Spahiu defends his dissertation”
(Last night at the Institute of Medicine)
At the beginning of the month, the newspaper “Pravda” of the city of Gorki published the announcement that on December 21, the defense of the dissertation for obtaining the scientific degree of the Candidate of Medical Sciences, Fadil Spahiu, would be held at the Institute of Medicine. The official opponents of the defense are: Honored Master of Science, Professor E. M. Berezov and Doctor of Medical Sciences Professor B. A. Korolev.
We are interested in the family of dissertation candidate Fadil Spahiu. Is that the boy with black eyes from Albania, who, together with his group of friends, finished his studies in 1953 at our Institute of Medicine? We later met him in medical clinics, in the Institute’s libraries, as well as in the collectives of artistic amateur groups, where Russian songs were sung together with Albanian songs.
Yesterday, the day Fadili arrived, all efforts to find him in the city’s hotels were unsuccessful. At the Institute of Medicine, they told us:
“We know Fadil, as always tireless. He has many friends in the city of Gorki, and it is difficult to say where he is now.”
In fact, from the train station he went to the Institute of Surgery, there they told us: “Yes, Fadili was here. Then he went to the Surgery Clinic of hospital No. 5”.
There we finally found the young Albanian doctor together with a group of close friends of the Institute. They asked him questions about Bajram Preza, where Fiqri Basha works.
Fadili says that his group mates now work in Albania: Bajram Preza is a neuropathologist, Bashkim Çuberi is a medical expert in Tirana, Fiqri Basha is an anatomist at the Albanian Institute of Medicine.
Smiling, Fadili says: “This year, our Institute of Medicine publishes the first issue of the Scientific Journal, do you understand, the first issue. This Institute was founded with the help of the Soviet Union and your excellent specialists teach there”.
The conversation automatically turns to the state of medicine in the People’s Republic of Albania. F. Spahiu not without bragging says:
Previously, all hope for medical problems was in the work of special doctors. Now in our small country, medicine has been placed on a sound scientific basis, in us medicine has become a general government work. At every step we feel the very valuable help of Soviet friends. For this reason, the Albanian people are very grateful to you.
All participants of the conversation are naturally interested in the changes in Fadil Spahi’s own life.
“What can I tell you? You understand how difficult it was for me at first, I didn’t know a word of the Russian language, and now – a smile appeared again on his dark face – with your help I learned Russian very well. When I returned to my homeland, I worked as a surgeon in Tirana. All the time I continued to work on the dissertation topic, which was given to me by N.N. Bllohin since I was a student in Gorky. It is about replacing the elbow joint with plastic material. It was a new, difficult job, but I liked it.
Our government gave me the opportunity to come as a scientific worker to the Institute of Pathology and Experimental Therapy of the Academy of Sciences of the Soviet Union. My scientific supervisor was N. N. Bllohin. You know this man, an outstanding and very demanding scientist. My dissertation work is finished and I have brought it for evaluation in the city that has become so near and dear to me.
We asked F. Spahiu about his plans for the future.
I have to spend a few months in Moscow and then I will return to my homeland. In your decision I passed a great and beautiful school. He will never forget it, never.
* * *
Fadil Spahi’s dissertation defense took place last night at the Institute of Medicine. There were professors, lecturers, young doctors and students in the hall.
The Secretary of the Scientific Council informs about the biography of the dissertation student: he is 30 years old, a member of the Albanian Labor Party, a former active fighter in the partisan guilds and has been decorated with the Labor Medal. F. Spahiu has finished his studies at the Institute of Medicine in Gorki with excellent results and has completed two scientific papers.
The speaker’s speech was followed with great attention.
Corresponding member of the Academy of Medical Sciences of the Soviet Union N. N. Bllohin, proved his great dedication to the work: We are glad that the skilled surgeon returns to Albania, who can now independently perform difficult operations in any part of the body.
The official opponents, E. L. Berezov and B. A. Korolev gave a high assessment of F. Spahi’s work, emphasizing its great importance.
The Chairman of the Scientific Council declared that F. Spahi is unanimously awarded the scientific rank of Candidate of Medical Sciences.
Dozens of people shook the young scientist’s hand. And he, moved and enthusiastic, repeated only one word that came from his heart: thank you.
In the photo: In the Department of Surgery of Hospital No. 5 Fadil Spahiu (right) meets with his colleagues from the Institute of Medicine V. N. Çinenkova, who is Assistant of the Department of Hospital Surgery, and M. S. Lebedev, surgeon.
In the photo on the right Fadil Spahiu with his scientific leader N. N. Bllohin, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor. Memorie.al