For the 80th Anniversary of the Liberation of Northern Norway, the WWII History Is Being Rewritten There

(Updated 28.10.2022 – added an afterword)

On the 25th of October 2019, the Norwegian state TV channel NRK 2 aired a 3 hour 20 minute long TV marathon, dedicated to the 75th anniversary of liberation of Finnmark, Northern Norway, by the Soviet troops. The documentary went under the title “Saved by the Russians”.

Save by the Russians

It featured a wide range of materials – interviews with the surviving witnesses, official ceremonies, both Norwegian and Russian documentaries, the efforts to locate the unburied remains of the fallen Soviet soldiers, interviews with the politicians and historians, a cultural part, where we could even see the choir of the Russian Northern Fleet sailors performing the Norwegian anthem.

Here are the chapter titles to give an idea of the scope of the documentary: Russians are coming; The King is giving his thanks; Russian liberation; The last days of the war; The battle of Neiden; Mothers and children in a war; War-zone Murmansk; Russian captives; The partisan Trygve Eriksen; The history of the partisans; The choir of the Northern Fleet; Forced evacuation on the North; The liberation anniversary in Kirkenes; The Prime Minister is giving a commentary; The battles on the Litsa front; The big losses of the Litsa dale; Dead soldiers in Litsa dale; The year under Russian governorship; Nidviser speaks about the local population; The children of war; The Swedish children; Child-soldier Alf Rafaelsen; Still finding the remains from the war; The culture of memory; The cooperation across borders; The choir of the Northern Fleet.

At a time when the rest of Europe was descending into a historical amnesia when it came to the events of World War II, with the history being actively re-written, this Norwegian program was a bastion of steadfast remembrance of history.

Norway will never forget the Soviet army’s heroic efforts.

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Newspaper “Pravda” commemorating the 30th anniversary of the “Black October” of 1993

In this post I am continuing with the remembrance of the events of September — October 1993 resulting in Yeltsin’s unconstitutional power grab. After Yeltsin’s coup, the newspaper “Pravda” was forbidden, which was highly symbolic, as “Pravda” means “Truth” in Russian, and so after October of 1993 and for a long time The Truth was forbidden. The previous posts in the series are: Autumn of 1991 as a Prelude to the “Black October” of 1993 and the “Wild ’90s” in Russia and The Bloody October of 1993. Retrospect. The Last Interview with Ruslan Hasbulatov.

The newspaper published a series of Telegram posts and articles, commemorating that turn to the worse in Russian history. Below, I will translate three materials from Telegram, finishing with a longer article by Doctor of Political Sciences Sergej Obuhov, who asks several highly-relevant questions about those times and how the events echo in today’s Russia.

All the images can be clicked on for higher resolution.


Telegram post 1:

“The Black October”: 30 years

A barricade leaflet.

Today, after exactly 30 years, our editorial office publishes the historical Moscow edition of the newspaper “Pravda”, published on the 1st of October 1993 under the general headline “Politics is over. The dictatorship has begun”. It truly became a barricade leaflet, a “battle leaflet” that contained both a chronicle of what was happening, an analysis of the situation, and the thoughts and experiences of the participants in the events. Even now one can see in it the intensity of those events, the nerve of that time of troubles. For the edification of future generations.

In just two days there will be a bloody suppression of the popular uprising in the worst traditions of Pinochet, and “Pravda” became banned for a long time.

Here’s what the deputy editor-in-chief of Pravda, Viktor Linnik, wrote: “…It is absolutely not necessary to admire Hasbulatov and Rutskoy in order to be outraged by Yeltsin’s utterly cynical actions. Although it is precisely today that both Rutskoy, Hasbulatov, and every defender of the “White House” deserve the gratitude of the Russians for daring to throw the gauntlet in the face of tyranny.

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22nd of June – Day of Remembrance and Sorrow. Remembering the 42 million perished Soviet people in the genocidal Second World War

The memorial texts below are written by Olga on Putinger’s Cat Telegram cannel. The article sheds new light on the genocide comitted against the Soviet people – predominantly the residents of Belorussia, Ukraine and Western Russia – by the Nazi-German invaders. We remember. As a 2015 article by Georgij Zotov showed, the same was not the case in Germany, where they asked “So many? Really?” Germans do not know how many Russians were killed by their ancestors


In Russia, June 22 is the Day of Remembrance and Sorrow. On this day, in 1941, the Great Patriotic War, which became the bloodiest and most destructive in the history of the country, began.

The Great Patriotic War had affected every family. More than 27 million people perished. Owing to the heroism of our soldiers and officers, the enemy was defeated, but Victory came at a high price.

Today, we pay tribute to the memory of all those who went through incredible hardship, those who died, but never gave up for a peaceful future for their descendants. We, the descendants, are full of deepest respect and gratitude for their sacrifice.

The declassified data below were presented at the State Duma hearing on the 14th of February 2017. Archived source is here.


By the beginning of the war, in June 1941, 196.7 million people lived on the territory of the USSR. According to declassified data of the State Planning Committee of the USSR, the losses of the Soviet Union in World War II amount to 41 million 979 thousand, and not 27 million, as previously thought. The total decline in the population of the USSR in 1941-1945 was more than 52 million 812 thousand people. Of these, irretrievable losses as a result of the factors of war – more than 19 million military personnel and about 23 million civilians.

The total demographic losses of the USSR as a result of the war amounted to 27 million people. Military losses were calculated at 11.4 million, including the war with Japan. From this number, it is necessary to subtract 1.8 million who returned from captivity and 0.9 million called up on the territory liberated from the occupation and sent to the troops from among the military personnel who were previously surrounded or missing.

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«2 Years» re-publishing // Переиздание книги «2 года»

This introduction article is tri-lingual, in:
Denne introduktionsartikel er tresproget, i:
Эта вступительная статья – трёхязычная, на:


THE POLITICS
The 22nd of June 1941.
Leaflet No. 2:

The German-Russian War

In a proclamation signed by Reich Chancellor Hitler, the Germans march on Russia on a front of 2400 km., from Finland to the Black Sea.

To the north, German troops are advancing from Norway along with Finnish divisions, from the Carpathians German and Romanian forces.

Hitler declared that Bolshevism stood in mortal enmity with National Socialism. Russia had been threatening Germany for a long time and eventually there were 160 Russian divisions positioned on Germany’s eastern border. The Soviets had thus broken the Treaty of Friendship. The imminent struggle revolved around the civilized world.

Mines have been laid in the Arctic Ocean and in the Baltic Sea, among other places between Bornholm and Sweden and between Bornholm and the German Coast.

Read THE POLITICS tomorrow
– Copenhagen


80 years ago, in the summer of 1943, the underground Communist Party of Denmark illegally published the book “2 Years” with newspaper clippings from the major German-controlled Copenhagen newspapers. The book is 70 pages long and is a rare historical document of the occupation-era official press coverage of the first 2 years of the war between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany, the outcome of which became decisive for the future of mankind.

To honour the Resistance fighters and strengthen the memory of the great Victory of the USSR and the Red Army over fascism, we are now launching a digital reissue of “2 Years”!

The book is photographed and can be studied page by page and read in graphically adapted versions in Russian and English, respectively, as well as in a linguistically edited version in modern Danish. An extensive historical notebook has been added as well as text-to-speech descriptions for the blind and visually impaired of the book’s many fine colour illustrations in silkscreen by artist and resistance fighter Viggo Rohde, with sharp political caricatures of the Nazi Menagerie and the course of the war.

We see our collective memory as an important weapon against the advanced means and methods of modern war propaganda to which we are daily exposed, and, that Dr. Goebbels could not even dream of.

Read, remember, and get historical perspective on your contemporary events!


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Commemorating the 9th of May – No One’s Forgotten, Nothing’s Forgotten!

I wanted to make a simple and poignant commemoration of the 9th of May celebration in these difficult times, when Russia once again is fighting against Nazism – and not just in the Southern Russian lands, currently known as Ukraine (Ukraine is just a battlefield, where, after 8 years of genocide of the Russian population, it was said, “enough is enough”), but also on the wider, so far, diplomatic front against the resurgence of the Nazism in the whole West. When the West is cancelling and banning the commemoration of the Victory Day – both in the birthplace of the 20th century Nazism – Austria, and in the hotbeds of Nazi SS punisher battalions, like Latvia.


Then I came across the post by the VGTRK journalist Andrei Medvedev. Facebook twice blocked his account for this cry of the sould, which is a badge of honour in itself! Incidentally, Andrei Medvedev produced the investigative documentary, which I translated and now re-uploaded: The Great Unknown War. A must-see documentary about the WWII prelude. By Andrei Medvedev

“If I had to speak in the Bundestag like the boy Kolya, then I would probably say these words:

– Dear deputies. Today I saw a miracle. And this miracle is called Germany. I walked to you and looked at the beautiful Berlin streets, at the people, at the wonderful architectural monuments, and now I’m standing here and looking at you. And I understand that all this is a miracle. That you were all born and live in Germany. Why do I think so? Because considering what your soldiers did in our occupied territories, the Red Army soldiers had the full moral right to destroy the entire German people. To leave in place of Germany a scorched field, ruins and only textbook paragraphs would remind that there was once such a country. You probably don’t remember all the details of the occupation, but it’s not necessary. I’m just going to remind you of what the Wehrmacht and SS soldiers did to Soviet children.

They were shot. Often in front of parents. Or vice versa, first they shot at mom and dad, and then at the children. Your soldiers raped children. Children were burned alive. They were sent to concentration camps. Where their blood was taken from them to make serum for your soldiers. Children were starved. Children were eaten to death by your sheepdogs. Children were used as targets. Children were brutally tortured just for fun.

Or here are two examples. The Wehrmacht officer was prevented from sleeping by a baby, he took him by the leg and smashed his head against the corner of the stove. Your pilots at the Lychkovo station bombed the train on which we tried to take the children to the rear, and then your aces chased the frightened kids, shooting them in a bare field. Two thousand children were killed.

Just for what you did with children, I repeat, the Red Army could destroy Germany completely with its inhabitants. It had a full moral right. But it didn’t.

Do I regret it? Of course not. I bow to the steely will of my ancestors, who found some incredible strength in themselves so as not to become the same brutes as the soldiers of the Wehrmacht.

On the buckles of German soldiers it was written “God is with us.” But they were a product of hell and brought hell to our land. The soldiers of the Red Army were Komsomol members and Communists, but the Soviet people turned out to be much bigger and more cordial than the inhabitants of enlightened religious Europe. And they did not take revenge. They were able to understand that hell cannot be defeated by hell.

You should not ask us for forgiveness, because you personally are not to blame for anything. You cannot be responsible for your grandfathers and great-grandfathers. But I will be honest – for me the Germans are forever an utterly alien people. It’s not because you’re personally bad. It’s the pain of the children burned by the Wehrmacht that screams in me. And you will have to accept that at least my generation – for whom the memory of the war is in my grandfather’s awards, his scars, his front-line friends – will perceive you this way.

What will happen then, I do not know. Perhaps mankurts will come after us who will forget everything. And we have done a lot for this, we have foiled a lot ourselves, but I hope that all is not lost for Russia yet.

Of course we need to cooperate. Russians and Germans. We need to solve problems together. Fight ISIS and build gas pipelines. But you will have to accept one fact: WE WILL NEVER REPENT for our Great War. And even more so for the Victory. And even more so in front of you. Anyway, I repeat, my generation. Because back then we saved not only ourselves. We saved you from yourself. And I don’t even know what’s more important.”

I fully agree with these strong and harsh word. As long as the medals and deeds of my grand-uncle are remembered

In Memory of Georgij

And as long as wee remember that Russian soldier saved the World

And as long as Leningrad stays Unconquered

I remember. I am proud.

PS: If only there were more such patriotic, history-aware, honest Americans as Scott Ritter:

The courageous granny who stood up to the mocking Ukrainian soldiers


In the pencil drawing on the right, the shadow of the old woman standing her ground is the iconic “Motherland Calling” poster of The Great Patriotic War. Here is that drawing in a greater resolution:

UPDATE: the minute granny has become a powerful living legend. Here is another, artistic, rendition of her image:

UPDATE 2: In Reutov, near Moscow, huge graffiti was created with a Ukrainian grandmother, who was mocked by the radicals of Ukraine because of the flag of the USSR. The author is reportedly a local artist. Earlier, images with the old woman appeared in the Murmansk and Belgorod regions. View the video of the painting process.

UPDATE 3: A video with comments from the foreign viewers embedded towards the end, to the “Sacred War”, the anthem of the fight against Nazism during the Great Patriotic War. It was great that the concern for her safety was raised at the UN level.


The video below made the headlines. It is quite heart-wrenching to watch as the Ukrainian soldiers are making a mockery of the elderly Ukrainian pair. I am writing a transcript below the video, and if it gets removed from YouTube, I’ll re-upload it to Odysee.

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Remembering the Start of the Great Patriotic War

On the 22nd of June,
at 4am sharp,
Kiev was bombed and we were informed,
That the War had begun.

The War started at dawn
so that more people were killed.
Parents slept, their children were sleeping
when on Kiev bombs fell.


Birds are not singing here,
Trees do not grow in these parts.
Only we, shoulder to shoulder,
Are sinking into the Earth.
The planet is burning and spinning,
Smoke is above Motherland.
And so we only need one Victory!
One for everyone, and we’ll pay any price.
One for everyone, and we’ll pay any price.


At this hour of remembrance, please read:

Vladimir Putin Shocks the West! The Munich Betrayal and The Real Lessons of the 75th Anniversary of World War II (Putin’s Article in The National Interest Magazine, USA)

with a direct link to President Putin’s article

Vladimir Putin: The Real Lessons of the 75th Anniversary of World War II

and watch

The Great Unknown War. A must-see documentary about the WWII prelude. By Andrei Medvedev

The Great Patriotic War in Ukraine. A historical retrospective by Rostislav Ischenko

The following article by a Ukrainian political analyst and historian in exile Rostislav Ischenko provides a much-needed context for both the current proliferation of Nazism in Ukraine, and the Banderite phenomenon of WWII.


The Great Patriotic War in Ukraine

by Rostislav Ischenko, published 09.05.2020 on the portal Ukraina.ru and at the open blog platform Kont.

It is sometimes said that the war started earlier for Ukraine than for the rest of the USSR. Thinking of the fact that when Hitler attacked Poland, the Western Ukrainian and Western Belorussian lands were part of the latter and thus also came under attack

German checkpoints
German checkpoint

This, however, is not entirely true. By the way, this interpretation of events has almost got no traction in Belorussia. And this is logical. The fact is that the German troops attacking Poland did not advance further than the Brest-Lvov line. Serious fighting was only for Lvov over the course of 2 days. After defeating the Polish group that retreated to the city, the Germans abandoned the city, which the Red Army entered, and it, along with all the Western Ukrainian territories, was annexed to the Ukrainian SSR.

If anyone in Ukraine entered the war on September 1, 1939, it was Ukrainian nationalists who opposed the Polish state on the side of Nazi Germany, just as they sided with Hitler against the USSR on June 22, 1941.

This difference between the Western Ukrainian territories and the Ukrainian SSR, the Belorussian SSR, and even the territories of Western Belarus (which were part of Poland before 1939) was well understood by Hitler. The Nazi dictator clearly understood the mentality of the peoples who inhabited the UkSSR much better than his generals and party bonzes. Let’s see how he administratively divided the occupied territories of the USSR.

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Criminalisation and persecution of St.George Ribbon in Ukraine: why the Ukro-Nazis are after the centuries-old symbol of Russian heroism

This post is a translation of an article by a Ukrainian politolog and historian in exile Rostislav Ischenko. The translation will be supplemented with commentary, references and images added by yours truly. This is an important reading to understand the symbolism and history of St.George ribbon – “Georgievskaja lentochka” in Russian.

Two years ago Lada Ray published an extensive article on the topic: The Importance of Victory Day, The Immortal Regiment, St. George Ribbon – AND GLOBALIST PLAN FIASCO!, and since then the situation in Ukraine has only gone from bad to worse.

And now, without further ado, the article:


Anton Drobovich against St.George

by Rostislav Ischenko, published 05.05.2020 on the portal Ukraina.ru and at the open blog platform Kont.

On the eve of the Victory Day in Ukraine, as it happened before, there is an increased activity among the nationalists who indict how to “properly” celebrate the holiday. Naturally, leading them all is the Institute of National Memory, the head of which, Anton Drobovich, zealously continues the work of his predecessor Vladimir Vyatrovich to eradicate the memory of the great Victory from the citizens of Ukraine. [Translator note: the naming of the “institute” is the direct nod to Orwell’s “1984”]

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USA and the West are continuing to impudently re-write the WWII history. Let’s remind the Naglosaxons: Soviet Soldier Saved the World! #Victory75 #IRemember #ImmortalRegimentOnline

It is not accidental the “Anglosaxons” are derisively called “Naglosaxons” by lots of Russian-speaking Internet users. By swapping the first two letters, the meaning of their name starts to reflect their deeds: “impudent saxons”.

I wrote a year ago how is History being rewritten in front of our eyes… when a memorial coin without the Soviet flag was issued in the West. And now it happens again, with even greater impudence!

Soviet banner over Reichstag
The iconic image of the Soviet soldiers raising the Red Banner over Reichstag in the defeated Berlin. The image, which Facebook is, incidentally, censoring in its colourised form!

Ironically, it is Germany that best keeps the memories of that war against Nazism…

From Lada Ray’s Futurist Terndcast: Autographs of Victory | THE DAY OF VICTORY AGAINST FASCISM – wartime graffiti left by Soviet soldiers in the Reichstag #Victory75 #ImmortalRegimentOnline #БессмертныйПолкОнлайн

…while the rest of the West is unifying in its enforced amnesia:

United States officially REWROTE history this V-day when it IGNORED Soviet Union’s role in defeating Nazism

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“Unconquered” by Valerij Kipelov. Russian Heavy Metal Group’s Tribute to Blockaded Leningrad

This song by the famous Russian heavy-metal group “Kipelov”, written 5 years ago to the 70th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War deeply touched me. The powerful words, the strong voice of Kipelov and the documentary footage from the blockaded Leningrad, all merged into a whirlweend of emotions and memory.

The title of the song is “Непокорённый” – “Nepokorjonnyj”, which means both “Unconquered”, abut also “Defiant”, “Unbowed”. And this word takes all these meanings in the song.
Lyrics translation is mine.

Небо Балтики давит свинцом, город держит за горло блокада;
Медный всадник и ангел с крестом батальонам подвозят снаряды.
Львы из камня срываются с мест, чтоб с бойцами подняться в атаку –
Непокорных жестокая месть. Наступление. Крушение мрака!

Припев:
Непокорённый, прошедший сквозь ад;
Непокорённый, герой – Ленинград!
Непокорённый, на все времена;
Непокорённый, город Петра!

Пишет Жизнь слабой детской рукой даты смерти на саване снега.
Что тогда бы случилось с тобой; смог остаться бы ты человеком;
Не сдаваться и в голос не выть, убивая за хлебные крошки;
Свет надежды сумел бы хранить под раскаты немецкой бомбежки?

Припев:
Непокорённый, прошедший сквозь ад;
Непокорённый, герой – Ленинград!
Непокорённый, на все времена;
Непокорённый, город Петра!

Чернота. Хрупкий Ладожский лёд, уходящие дети под воду.
Метроном отобьет скорбный счет всех погибших в блокадные годы.
Нервы города – к сердцу земли, силы взять, и к весне возродиться,
Медный всадник к победе летит, неподвластной забвению птицей.

Припев:
Непокорённый, прошедший сквозь ад;
Непокорённый, герой – Ленинград!
Непокорённый, на все времена;
Непокорённый, город Петра!

Город Петра!

Непокорённый!

The Baltic sky is laden with lead, the city is held by the throat by blockade;
Bronze Horseman and Angel with Cross bring shells to the forces forth.
Lions of stone break from their plinths to rise with fighters in charge –
The unconquereds’ brutal revenge. Offensive. Darkness will fall!

Chorus:
Unconquered, having passed through Hell;
Unconquered, the Leningrad-hero!
Unconquered, for all time;
Unconquered, the city of Peter!

Life writes with a weak child’s hand the dates of death on a shroud of snow.
What would have happened to you back then; could you have kept yourself human;
Not to give up and howl out loud, killing for crumbs of bread;
Would you be able to hold onto the light of hope under the thunder of German shelling?

Chorus:
Unconquered, having passed through Hell;
Unconquered, the Leningrad-hero!
Unconquered, for all time;
Unconquered, the city of Peter!

Blackness. The fragile Ladoga ice, and children going under.
The metronome will mournfully beat the count of those, died in blockade.
Nerves of the city reach to Earth’s heart, strength to take, and be reborn by the spring,
The Bronze Horseman flies to Victory, a bird that will never be forgotten.

Chorus:
Unconquered, having passed through Hell;
Unconquered, the Leningrad-hero!
Unconquered, for all time;
Unconquered, the city of Peter!

The cty of Peter!

Unconquered!

The Salvation of Prague in May 1945 by the Soviet Troops

The liberation of Prague from the Nazi German occupation was brought about 75 years ago by the Soviet troops under the command of Marshal Ivan Konev. Seeing as the Czechs have recently decided to erase that particular page of their history, we must do all in our power to counterbalance the destruction of memory, by remembering the events of 5th through 12th of May 1945 in all the unaltered detail.

For those seeking to learn even more, I would highly recommend to also read Lada Ray’s in-depth article 75 Years Later, Nazism Won in Europe? Czechia Demolishes Monument to Russian Marshal Konev, Liberator of Auschwitz & Prague! (LADA RAY REPORT).

And now, let me present translations of two materials that shed light on the events, unfolding in Prague as the War was drawing to an end…

Liberation of Prague in May 1945 – The History Without Retouching

Written by Klim Podkova, 08.05.2018

Burning Prague

Who doesn’t know the history of the liberation of Prague? On May 5, 1945, Prague rose in revolt, Soviet troops came to the aid of the rebels, and on May 9, Prague was liberated.

But it happened not quite like that, or rather, it wasn’t like that at all. In May, parts of the German garrison were really conducting bloody battles in Prague. Only their main opponents were not the rebelling Czechs, but the fighters of the 1st division of the RLA (“Russian Liberation Army”, or Vlasovtsy [Translator note: The name Vlasov is synonymous to that of Quisling in Norway]).

Czech Republic – the reliable industrial rear of the Third Reich

Czechoslovakia as an independent state disappeared from the political map of Europe before the Second World War. First, in April 1938, under pressure from Britain, France and Italy, Czechoslovakia abandoned the Sudetenland in favour of Germany (the so-called Munich Conspiracy).

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Prague’s Shame – Petty-minded Prague-6 mayor Ondřej Kolář erases the memory of Prague’s saviour, Marshal Ivan Konev

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the Victory over the German Fascists, where Soviet Union played the decisive and definitive role in sealing that Victory. This role of USSR is like a thorn in the eye of the modern day revisionists and neo-Fascists, who over the past decades have been ferociously rewriting history and smearing Russia as the heir to the USSR. The history is remembered as long as there are physical manifestations of said history left in the world.

As such, the especially vicious battle has been wielded against the monuments commemorating the Soviet (and by that meaning all nationalities, not just Russian) soldiers and commanders on the post-Soviet space. Poland, Czech Republic, Romania and others started the trend as soon as the CIA assets took power in those countries. After 2014, once the neo-Fascits took hold of power in Ukraine with the help of the USA and EU, the demolition of the WWII memorials was put on the assembly line rate level, at the same tempo as the destruction of the Ukrainian economy that it inherited after the USSR.

Now, that the date of the 75th Anniversary is drawing ever nearer, the newest salvo in the war on the historical monuments was heard from Prague, Czech Republic, where the memorial to Marshal Ivan Konev – the saviour of Prague – was torn down. If not for Konev’s army and his decisive, yet careful actions, Prague would be looking like Dresden now. Albeit, not because of the American firebombing, but because of the demolition charges that the retreating German forces put all around the city. It is the remembrance of the salvation of such cities as Prague and Krakow – at great self-sacrificial cost on the part of the Soviet troops – that the CIA assets are eager to destroy.

Addendum Lada Ray published a very forceful article about the desecration of the memorial to Prague’s saviour on Patreon: 75 Years Later, Nazism Won in Europe? Czechia Demolishes Monument to Russian Marshal Konev, Liberator of Auschwitz & Prague! (LADA RAY REPORT)
Please read it, as it contains a much deeper historical perspective around the liberation of Prague, as wellanalysis of the situation with the war on monuments in particular and the state of the Western world in general.

Related article translation that I published 5 years ago, the the 70th Anniversary: Prague Winter. What is the Czechs’ attitude towards the coming 70th anniversary of the Victory?

Below is my speed-translation of an article from “Argumenty i Facty” from 09.04.2020, showing the shame of Prague district 6 in all its ignominious glory.


“Let’s return Marshal home!” Will the memorial to Ivan Konev come to Moscow from Prague?

Descendants of the Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev began collecting signatures for the transfer to Russia of the monument to the commander that was dismantled in Prague. The daughter of the Marshal, Natalia Koneva, hopes that the monument will be installed in Moscow.

“We have Marshal Konev street. And it will be natural if the monument would stand on it.”

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History being rewritten in front of our eyes…

When I published the translation of a 6-year-old article “So many? Really?” Germans do not know how many Russians were killed by their ancestors, I got some vehement response, and even more vehement responses came to Lada’s repost of my translation at FuturistTrendcast.

What scares me is how the history is being rewritten right in front of our very eyes, while a few of the contemporaries of WWII are still alive, and while their ancestors still remember their stories, like I remember the story of my grand-uncle. The most scary part is the passive acceptance of the twisted half-truths and lies, peddled by the media, by the general populace. What can we say about the events of 1812 and before (like when the Dutch have forgotten the Russian help in restoration of their state), what can we say about the changes done to our history, when the history is being so thoroughly rewritten right now?!

Three articles on RT caught my eye today, vividly illustrating this.

Lesson to learn from GoT: Stories are powerful, be careful which ones you believe

There is one very poignant part in this article:

Orwell’s dystopia takes to its logical extreme the old adage that “history is written by the victors,” but it’s not too far off. Much of Western history about WWII, for example, came from the pen of Winston Churchill, who naturally made sure he was the hero by scrubbing out inconvenient facts like the 1943 Bengal famine or the betrayal of Yugoslavia, for instance.

These narratives were then taken up and amplified by Hollywood, which has from its very beginning manufactured institutional memory for most Americans. As a result of blockbusters like ‘Saving Private Ryan,’ and ‘Band of Brothers’ (another HBO show), the US contribution to defeating Hitler has become grossly inflated in the public mind, not just at home, but abroad as well. Meanwhile, the massive Soviet role in the war has been minimized or erased entirely.

This narrative violation of history made it possible for US President Donald Trump to argue that America single-handedly defeated Nazism and Communism, without a peep from his critics and legions of fact-checkers normally eager to seize every opportunity.

To paraphrase Varys, power is all about perception management.

And right on cue, case in point:

Soviet Union oddly missing from US-made coin ‘saluting’ WWII Allies

After fierce resistance and four years of bloody battles, the Red Army repelled the invasion and liberated Eastern Europe from the Nazi occupation.

In 1945, Soviet soldiers captured Berlin. After the warfare in Europe was over, Moscow agreed to US requests to enter the war against Japan, defeating its forces in Manchuria.

More than 26.6 million Soviet citizens died in the war, with 8.7 million killed in combat.

And yet…

A US-made collectable coin lists Britain and France among the honored US allies in WWII, but, strangely, the Soviet Union, whose Red Army delivered a crushing blow to the Nazis in Europe and fought Japan, is omitted.

I want to round these musings with a news from Sweden, where they are mulling to forbid… Nordic runes:

Swedes up in arms as govt mulls potential ban on ancient ‘Nazi’ runes

First the Rus runes were pushed into oblivion, and now it’s the turn of the Norse runes, and with them even more of our history will be forgotten. Nazis seem to be an awfully convenient excuse to achieve such goals of first maligning and then outright banning the old and venerated symbols, as it’s already been done with the symbol of the “wheel of time” – “kolovrat”.

The ”Wild ’90s” in Russia, more memories

I’ve written several posts on the topic of the devastating “Wild ’90s” in Russia. What I find to be very important is the preservation of the peoples memories of that tragic era. Already there are signs that it has become etched in the Russian “gene pool” on the same level as the Time of Trouble of 1599, the Borodino battle of The Great Patriotic War of 1812 and the memories of The Second Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945, along with many other historic turning point events – both in hardship and happiness.

I wrote a translation of one such recollection in the article The ”Wild ’90s” in Russia, as reflected in people’s memory and in the second part of the testimonials translations. Here is another characteristic story from Ankdot.ru site, New Year-themes, yet sad and bittersweet. The author is maybe a little younger than myself. After the main translation, I will present some select comments to the post with more memories of that terrible and confusing time.

The original can be found here.

THE GRANDSON OF SANTA CLAUS

This was inspired by the stories about Santa Claus. A fair warning: it will not be fun. As I remember, my childhood was a happy one though it can hardly be called rich. First came the “perestroika”, then the “fun” of the 90s. My father had died, mother was a kindergarten teacher with a salary equivalent of 10 pounds of buckwheat a month (those who remembers 1992-1993 – he will understand). And all this against the background of the emerging abundance of imported goods. Kids today won’t understand what it was like in the early 90-ies to eat Snickers on a school break or go outside with a cassette tape recorder. As you can gather, with a monthly budget of 10 pounds of buckwheat, Snickers at a break, and especially the tape recorder in the courtyard were not to be dreamt of. I knew better, and didn’t even hint about such things.

So when on January 1, 1993 I received Sony Walkman as a gift – I was close to a shock. First, at the time it was better than both iPhone X and Apple Watch combined nowadays. Secondly, I knew that for the next six months the monthly ration of buckwheat would be halved. “Mom, from where?” “Don’t worry, it’s a present from work.” In short, until the summer I was treated at school, if not like a king, then at least as of particular noble bloodline.

And only a few years later did I learned that for the sake of the player, my mom worked part time as a cleaner in the same garden a few months…

Now I’m an adult of about the same age as my mother was back then. I earn more than well. But I cannot get my mom to agree to any expensive purchase (“You need to save money for a new car/apartment/dacha”. Those, who have parents who survived the 90s as adults will understand me). So I every time have to come up with some excuse for where the present came from. Travel package – “Yes, it’s a promo tour from some acquaintances, with a 50% discount, we must take it.” TV – it’s a bonus from the store, the phone – “we can buy it here twice as cheap, than what you have in Russia”. In my experience, what works best is to get tickets to the theatre “for the bonuses of the mobile operator, which will expire if they are not spent now.”

And also now I bought her tickets to the concert in the Kremlin, “tickets from friends, whose firm is sponsoring the concert”, while with tears welling up, in my inner eye I see a 13-year-old glowing from happiness, with a player in his hands.

My dears, my advice to you while it is not too late – please your parents. They, though they are already old, still believe in miracles. And I told you of some modern versions of the “miracles”.