I am nominating this featured article for review because I believe it falls short of the standard necessary for a featured article.
I have tried to engage editors in a clean-up of the article, but this has failed. Only one editor seems to be trying, and that editor appears to be against a silent consensus.
1 The article appears to be incorrect in even the premise of the existence of the Rus' Khaganate.
Reliable sources are not available to show the existence of such a state, and since the FA, the article has been heavily edited away from "a recent name given by historians to a collection" to more of a factual existence of the Khaganate, something that is not supported by evidence so far.
There is recent evidence that the Rus' Khaganate existed, but from only one recent reliable source, but it is true that the Rus' themselves did, as did the Rus' Khazar. It is possible that OR has crept in over the last few years and that the aricle is in such a state that this cannot be easily removed. Whatever the outcome of that editing would be, at present the article is not FA material and IMHO would fail even a GA nomination at present.
2 The article is clearly stating that the Khaganate existed from "the late 8th and early-to-mid-9th centuries", yet evidence is used from 10th century sources, such as Ibn Fadlan, which refer to the Kievan Rus', a later dynastic state in the mid to late 10th century, and followed on from the time period used here.
I firmly believe that this article fails 1.b, 1.c, and 1.d, and currently 1.e Chaosdruid (talk) 01:22, 6 December 2013 (UTC)
With regards to #2, the date range on the infobox is citing Magocsi, who is a super-expert on this and not some 10th century source, so use him as reference to the formation and dissolution dates. --Львівське (говорити) 18:07, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
This is a little confusing, 2 refers not to the dates of formation and dissoluton, but to the dates of the so-called primary contempoorary material. Material written 60-100 years after the events, and speaking in the present tense, cannot be relied upon for information on a possible khaganate existing 60 years beforehand. In particular, Ibn Fadlan () and Hudud al-'Alam (The Regions of the World). There do appear to be contemporary sources from the table in the site you posted:
first draft 232/846
second ,, 272/885
written down 237/851
completed by Abū Zayd 304/916
Ya'qūbī, Geography 278/891
Perhaps these can be considered primary, though Sulayman was completed 50 years later and by a different author. I would also consider Ibn Rustah primary, as he was contemporary and died around 890 AD.
As for the dates used, we are using more than one source, as we should - we are using David Christian and Paul Magosci. There is no such thing as a super expert in this case as there is so little evidence from the time, and so little about it is know, mostly it is speculation between larger known truths. Of the sources, they are from a time period after the events which is so far apart as to mean they cannot be relied upon to reflect the time period we need - more importantly it is Magosci who is proposing the term "Rus Khaganate", and pushing it as a truth. Magosci is the one trying to convince the world that the state existed, yet with no supporting material that I have seen as yet. Chaosdruid (talk) 22:14, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
Please notice that since the start of this review I heavily edited the intro to stress the hypothetical character of the polity.
At the same time, the article notably lacks the criticism of the concept. Yes, some controversy is described, but it is more about disagreements in detail: it was located there or yonder, it existed then or before, etc. All refs are from the proponents of the concept (or primary sources) and none from the opponents. Why is that? Multiple-choice hint: (a) all experts agree (b) nobody but the proponents care about a fringe theory (c) wikipedians-in-charge are biased or non-diligent to dig for opposite opinions. Staszek Lem (talk) 21:29, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
If the whole theory to be transferred to North America, one can easily invent "American Chieftainate" among American Indians and write big sections about religion, customs, economy, etc., of the "Chieftainate": it is pretty obvious that wherever people live, they would have cutoms, religion, and the leader were surely known by some indigenous or borrowed term. So the recipe is simple: postulate that "Chieftainlate" existed, and then pile up all data into its article. Well, South America had empires, North America did not, big deal. But the Russians are itching to have a claim for an ancient civilization. Again, no big deal, but this itch must be described from a proper angle, and the article may be featured. After all, Atlantis did not exist either (Or did it? :-). Staszek Lem (talk) 21:26, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
Demote to GA - Since the criticism (both here and in article talk page) was not addressed; in fact, nobody bothers to edit the article at all. Over its life several people expressed concern. Each time the reply was basically shrugging off. The article has good chances to restore its FA status, if somebody would like to work out the listed issues in a non-dismissive way. I checked google quickly and find the article FA-salvageable, if approached without attitude. Staszek Lem (talk) 18:31, 7 March 2014 (UTC)
Demote to C class
While I am prepared to work on the article, I have tried to leave it to the interested editors to fix it thus far. Some work has been done, but collaboration has proved impossible. Indeed, Staszak Lem has proved to be possibly the only other editor prepared to work on this, though his comment "if approached without attitude" hints at the loggerhead situation that could easily arise after his refactoring of the talk page, and his accusations of someone having "an attitude".
The article is contentious, will probably go through some period of readjustment and editing, and needs a lot of work to provide refs and reliability needed for anything above a C class. I do not see that happening quickly due to the problems of sourcing refs and info on the subject. It is also a neologism, relies on primary sources not from the time period in the article and has a very POV set of edits from a small number of editors. I consider it as failing GAC on 2b, 2c, 3a & 4.
Many of the issues I raised were there when it was a GA, and it is radically different now. There is also the issue of demotion from GA with regard to GAR/GAC - "Accordingly, demoted featured articles are not automatically graded as good articles and must be reassessed for quality."
The major issue here is that the subject has no refs to show it even existed, only that their leader was given the title "Khagan" in Arabic texts - Khan/Khagan means "leader of the empire" and so would be written like this in an Arabic book as that is their word for "ruler of the empire", be it the ruler of their empire or of the Rus'. This leaves us with the problem that simply being called king does not make one's kingdom so. With no primary or secondary evidence to support the existence of a khaganate, and with some sources being completed over a hundred years after the "khaganate" had been superseded.
"The Secret History of the Mongols, written for that very dynasty, clearly distinguishes Khagan and Khan: only Genghis and his ruling descendants are called Khagan, while other rulers are referred to as Khan. Khagan or Khaan refers to Emperor or King in the Mongolian language, however, Yekhe Khagan means Great Khagan or Grand Emperor."
With this difficulty in achieving consensus and action, I have to go with recommending a C class. If work is done to strip out the factual discrepancies, rebuild POVless text, complete info from primary sources/secondary sources, I can see it getting through and GA or FA easily. Chaosdruid (talk) 21:28, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this page.