The day before yesterday I analyzed the false pacifism of the extreme left to support the strategy of the Russian government of Vladimir Putin in Ukraine and Georgia.
This false pacifism is a copy of the one used by the communist parties to justify the invasions of Poland and Finland in 1939 and also France in 1940. However, I already warned in that article that Russia not only has allies among the extreme left. It also has other support in the rest of the political map, starting with a good part of the right-wing, especially among many people who see Putin as a defender of Christian civilization and a great patriot. That the Russian government is dedicated to persecuting, imprisoning and even liquidating political dissidents seems a minor matter, in the eyes of some. What would they say if that was done by any progressive government in a Western country?
The erroneous idea that as part of the West it is adopting a perverse drift, then its greatest strategic enemy, Russia, is preferable, has been installed in a part of the right-wing, without realizing that it is as bad or even worse than the reviled elite of Brussels. Add to this, often, that the anti-Americanism and hostility to NATO that were already typical of the left have spread to the right-wing as well, much of it fueled by the progressive media - which has many right-wingers among its viewers - and also by official Russian media such as RT and Sputnik News.
One of the causes of these tendencies that occur among the Western right is the ignorance of what is happening in Russia, something that I have been fighting against for a long time. We are going to review below some facts that many right-wing people who sympathize with Vladimir Putin seem to ignore:
1. Putin's party refuses to condemn the crimes of communist dictatorships
On January 25, 2006, the Council of Europe condemned the crimes of the communist dictatorships, through its Resolution 1481. In that vote, the delegates of United Russia -Vladimir Putin's party- voted against the condemnation together with the representatives of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, an openly Stalinist formation. In September 2019, the European Parliament condemned the crimes of nazism and communism through its resolution P9_TA(2019)0021. Putin criticized that conviction, saying it was "the height of cynicism."
2. Russia's alliance with communist dictatorships that persecute Christians
Although the USSR disappeared in 1991, the Putin government has maintained the relationship that the Soviet Union had with the communist dictatorships that did not disappear. Russia is today an ally of Communist China, Cuba, Laos, Eritrea, Vietnam and even North Korea. It so happens that these communist dictatorships appear on the list of 50 countries that most persecute Christians, published this week by the NGO Open Doors.
3. Putin has equated Christianity with Communism and Lenin's mummy with relics of saints
Putin's statements in this regard were published by the official Russian media outlet RT in January 2018: "communist ideology is very similar to Christianity. Freedom, brotherhood, fraternity, justice... all this appears in the Holy Scriptures. And the communism builder code? It is a sublimation, a primitive compendium of the Bible: nothing new was invented." On the mummy of Lenin, Putin stated: "How is it different from the relics of saints for Christians?" According to RT, the Stalinist Communist Party of the Russian Federation agreed with Putin's statements.
4. Putin forbade remembering the alliance of the USSR with Germany to invade Poland
In 2014 Putin signed his particular "historical memory" law. With the excuse of prohibiting the denial of the crimes of Nazism, this law prohibits "knowingly spreading false information about the activity of the USSR during the years of World War II." And of course, it is the Russian government that determines what is true and what is not. In 2016, this law was used to fine blogger Vladimir Luzgin for remembering the joint invasion of Poland by Hitler and Stalin: "The communists and Germany jointly invaded Poland, which triggered World War II. That is, communism and Nazism collaborated closely," Luzgin wrote. What he said is a historical fact that is well documented.
5. Putin prohibited by law equating communism with nazism
In June 2017, Vladimir Putin declared that the demonization of the figure of Stalin is "a way of attacking the Soviet Union and Russia." Let us remember that Stalin was a dictator and genocide and that under his command millions of people were murdered in the USSR. Despite the historical evidence in this regard, the Russian government has even resorted to coercion to prevent this genocide from being put in its rightful place in history: in 2021 Putin signed a law that prohibits equating Nazism with communism ("the aim of establishing a ban on public identification of the role of the USSR and Nazi Germany in World War II "), which in practice also affects possible comparisons between Hitler and Stalin. The policy of the Russian government has helped to promote the figure of the genocide. According to the Levada Center, in 2016 28% of Russians considered Stalin a "great leader"; in 2021, 56% already thought so.
6. The Russian government calls the Soviet invasion of Poland a "liberation campaign"
One of the most alarming facts of the current government of Russia is that it has accepted a large part of the lies of Stalinist propaganda, including those used to justify the Soviet invasion of the eastern fringe of Poland on September 17, 1939. The year Last year, on the anniversary of that invasion, the Russian Foreign Ministry described it as "a liberation campaign in Poland" in a message posted on its official Twitter channel. Let us remember that this invasion resulted in crimes of genocide against the Polish people, with hundreds of thousands of Poles deported to Siberia and executed by the Soviets.
7. The outlawing of an NGO that investigated the crimes of communism
The NGO Мемориал (Memorial) was founded in 1989. It is the oldest human rights group in Russia. One of its founders was Arseny Roginsky, who was a political prisoner during the Soviet dictatorship. The purpose of this NGO is "studying political repressions in the USSR and in present-day Russia." It has dedicated a large part of its activity to investigating the crimes of communism and trying to morally and legally rehabilitate the victims of those crimes. For this reason, the Putin regime unleashed a persecution against the NGO. In 2014, the Russian government filed a lawsuit to demand its dissolution, after the NGO refused to register as a "foreign agent" -following the legislation imposed by United Russia, Putin's party-, as it is a Russian NGO. The persecution culminated a few weeks ago with the banning of the NGO.
8. The removal of plaques remembering the Poles killed in the Katyn massacre
In December 2019, two plaques commemorating thousands of Poles killed in the Katyn massacre, perpetrated by the Soviets in 1940, were removed from the University of Tver. The Russian prosecutor's office, under government orders, had demanded the removal of the plaques. plaques stating that the inscriptions "are not based on documented facts", a fact that has been interpreted as a new attempt by the Russian government to erase the crimes of communism.
9. The denialism of the Russian government on the Ukrainian genocide
Between 1932 and 1933, Stalin perpetrated a genocide against the Ukrainian people, known as the Holodomor, who used starvation as a weapon, killing between 3.9 and 6 million people. Vladimir Putin's government insists on denying this genocide, calling it a mere "common tragedy" and denying that it was a massacre directed against the Ukrainian people.
10. The Russian government's support for the extreme left in the West
As I already pointed out here in 2020, the official Russian government media RT and Sputnik News have been supporting far-left parties in the West, parties like Die Linke (Germany), Jean-Luc Melenchon's La France insoumise, Movimento 5 Stelle (Italy) and the communists of Syriza (Greece).
The Spanish pro-communist party Podemos has been one of those supported by the Russian media. The support has been well compensated by that party, to the point that in November 2014 the Russian communist newspaper Pravda defined Podemos as a "pro-Russian party". For example, in September 2014 in an interview on Sputnik News, the leader of Podemos, Pablo Iglesias, called the Ukrainian government "neo-Nazi" and criticized the European sanctions on Russia for the invasion of Crimea. In the new escalation of Russian provocations against Ukraine, Podemos has once again demonstrated its harmony with Russia by attacking the US and NATO, in an attempt to demobilize possible Western aid to Ukraine in the face of a Russian invasion.
At the same time, the attacks on the Spanish conservative party Vox from RT and Sputnik News have been constant, something that can be explained by the fact that Vox is a clearly anti-communist party (it is even promoting an international alliance against the advance of communism in Ibero-America), supports to Poland and defends Spain's membership in NATO, the alliance created in 1949 to provide a common defense to Western democracies.
Photo: Mikhail Metzel / Kremlin.
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