The book reconsiders the history of the Russian state and corrects a number of issues related to our older history. The name 'Russians' meant a community of different ethnic dominants at different times: originally, it was dominated by Frisians, then by Scandinavians, then by several Baltic-Finnic peoples and seamen, and then by the Slavs. After the adoption of 988-989 Christianity the Estonians who had been involved in the creation of the state were separated from Russia. In Novgorod, however, the privileges of the native peoples remained unchanged for a long time, thanks to a strong princely state.
One should understand that Enn Haabsaar describes the specific period of the formation of the Russian state at the time of the beginning of the adoption of Christianity. The pre-Christian period of history is most thoroughly described by Edgar V. Saks in his works AESTII and ESTONIAN VIKINGS - full scan here https://cloud.mail.ru/public/2sYY/2K2D7ZAEG </b>:
KEY QUESTION IS (to which, unfortunately, neither Haabsaar, nor Saks give an answer - only hints) - WHERE WAS THE ISLAND OF THE 'RUS' PEOPLE, described by the Arab chronists of the X-XI Centuries?
"... As for ar-Rusi, they live on an island in the sea. That island occupies a space of three days in both directions. On the island there are forests and swamps, and it is surrounded by a lake. They, Russ, are numerous and they consider the sword as a means of subsistence. If a person dies and leaves his daughters and sons, then all the property goes to the daughters, and the sons are only given a sword, and they say: "The father got good with the sword, follow his example ..."
And they are strong and mighty people and go to distant places with the aim of raids, and they also sail on ships in the Khazar Sea, attack ships and seize goods. Their courage and braveness are well known, so one of their warriors is equivalent to many warriors in the other nations. If they had horses and they were riders, they would be the most terrible scourge for humanity. "
Al-Marwazi. "Taba and al-Zayvan", one of the translation options.
"They [the Ruses] do not have arable lands, but bring food from the land of the Slavs", "And they have no real estate, neither villages nor arable lands," the island itself "is covered with forests and swamps, and is so unhealthy and wet that no earlier one sets foot on the ground, it starts to shake due to the abundance of moisture in it".
Slavists associate the island with island of Rügen: https://swinow.livejournal.com/135236.html; Germanists set logical reasons why Rügen doesn’t fit in, but, since they search for the 'RUS' island exclusively in Scandinavia, they don’t find anything corresponding to the descriptions: https://oldbotanik.livejournal.com/1404.html. And neither the Slavists, nor the Germanists take Finno-Ugrians into account.
Yet, what else can be meant, other than the SAAREMAA (OSILIA, OSSA, WALTIA) island in the Baltics, with clear depiction of its size and nature, and the habits of the ancient Estonian pirates, who used Osilia and its harbors as their military base for centuries, prior to Christianisation!? The coves of Saaremaa were shelters for fleets of thousands of ships. See studies by Edgar V. Saks AESTII and ESTONIAN VIKINGS.
Also noteworthy is the mentioning of the island of Saaremaa as Rusel island in the treatise "Journey to Muscovy" by the Dutchman Nikolaas Witsen (1664-1665) : https://vk.com/topic-95979368_37156972.
In Saaremaa and neighboring Hiiumaa, slaves captured during raids into Sweden and other lands were brought for trade in the slave markets, which is still reflected in some place names, e.g., Orissaare, Orjaku (from ori, orja (Est., Fin., Karel., Izhor., Voti, Veps.), uŕe (Erzia), uŕä (Moksha), var (Udmurt), ver (Komi) - 'a slave'). It is very likely also that the name of the Oreshek (Орешек) island-fortress at the entrance from Neva into the Ladoga lake is not a Slavic name meaning 'a nut', but could mean a 'slave market'. Ori, orja may also be the origin for the Germanic words: urge (Eng.), work (Eng.), Werk (Ger.), yrke (Sw.).
The Saaremaa Vikings were very strong until the 13th century. “... Estonians, especially the inhabitants of Saaremaa, responded with military raids into the territory of Sweden. In 1187 Karelians and Estonians, destroyed the then Swedish capital Sigtuna.” (Ants Järv, “History of Estonia”, edited by Mauno Jokipii, “Baltic-Finnish peoples. History and destinies of kindred peoples”, Jyväskylä, Atena Kustannus Oy, 1995).
Military affairs, weaponry manufacturing, trade of goods and slaves were the main occupation on this island, inhabited by professional warriors and their families (the 'Rusi'), while food and other supplies were coming from inland, where the 'Slavs' (Slaves, Sciavi, Esclavos) worked.
Names Rusi and Slavi initially had nothing to do with languages spoken, but distinguished between the classes within the society hierarchy.
Possible stem words for 'rus' in the Finnic languages are:
1) ro’už (Livonian) - 'people, tribe';
2) rusi(kas) (Estonian), rusikka (Old Finnish) - 'a fist', fig. 'power, oppression, pressure, violence, pressure', 'military force';
3) ruuz, gen. ruusi (Est.) - 'a large flat boat';
roоtsi (Est.), ruotsi (Fin.) - 'rowers', also a reference name for Swedes.