THEY TOLD ME IF WE ELECTED BARACK OBAMA THEY’D BE putting up statues of Stalin around our nation’s capital. And they were right!When I managed to pick my chin off the floor I followed the link and found a somewhat weird story. It seems that Virginia's monument to D-Day includes a statue of Stalin. D-Day? Whatever one may think of the Soviet Union's and Stalin's own role in the Second World War (or the Great Patriotic War) it had nothing to do with D-Day.
Understandably, people in Bedford, VA were somewhat upset even when they were told that this was to honour the Soviet Union's role in distracting the Nazi forces so the D-Day landing could go ahead. One wonders about the historical knowledge that produces that kind of statement.
The story has now hit Washington DC where various embassies are conveying protests on behalf of people whose families managed to escape from Stalin and his henchmen.
The oddest part of this whole saga is that the plaque under the statue apparently says:
In memory of the tens of millions who died under Stalin's rule and in tribute to all whose valor, fidelity, and sacrifice denied him and his successors victory in the cold war.Seems a weird way of celebrating all that by putting up a bust of Stalin.
Well, Stalin and his pals did push for the D Day invasion to take place earlier than it did. The allies' delay in starting the "Second Front Now" (as obediently demanded by Western Communists and fellow travellers) is still portrayed as slacking and foot-dragging on Russia Today. So perhaps Stalin should be portrayed saying "Hurry up, chaps!"ReplyDelete
However beastly and murderous a dictator Stalin was, nobody can diminish the courage and sacrifice of the Russian people which soaked up 75% of the Nazi war effort. But you are right - it is distinctly weird !
Do bear in mind Stalin was the darling o the democrats, the WW2 is too complicated to make snap statements, we supplied lots of front line fighting equipment, how would they have fared without that help against Hitler.ReplyDelete
Getting the equipment there cost us a great many ships and men on the Arctic convoys. I also knew a rather raffish character ( a colonel, long dead by now) who helped arrange supplies through Persia.ReplyDelete
However, none of the supplies would have been any use without the incredible fighting spirit of the Russian forces - something of which Churchill was deeply aware. It is remembered and celebrated today as "The Great Patriotic War" in a way which makes our acts of remembrance look very pale.
It was one of his nightmares that the Germans might appoint some half-decent District Commissioner types to run the conquered territories and oppressed Russians and others would go over to the enemy. In the Great War, von Lettow Vorbeck had commanded the loyalty of African troops and led hugely greater British forces a dance for years.
Many Ukrainians and others did, of course, but the utter nihilist stupidity of Nazi racial policy ensured there were never enough to make a difference.