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Putin echoes Chinese President, warns against “distorting history”
March 18, 2015, 6:57 am

Vladimir Putin chaired the 36th meeting of the Russian Victory Organising Committee at the Grand Kremlin Palace on 17 March 2015 [PPIO]

Vladimir Putin chaired the 36th meeting of the Russian Victory Organising Committee at the Grand Kremlin Palace on 17 March 2015 [PPIO]

Ahead of visits by Chinese President Xi Jinping and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday spoke out against “attempts at distorting the events” of World War II.

“Their goal is obvious: to undermine Russia’s power and moral authority, to deprive it of its status of a victorious nation, with all the ensuing international legal consequences, to divide peoples and set them against each other and to use historical speculations in their geopolitical games,” said Putin at a meeting of the organizing committee of the Victory celebrations. The Russian President had earlier last year signed a law making the denial of Nazi crimes and distortion of the Soviet Union’s role in the World War II a criminal offence.

Chinese President Xi Jinping and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will be attending the commemoration events in Moscow in May.

Putin and Xi have both, in recent months, warned against “distorting history”.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said at a war commemoration event in December that “forgetting history means betrayal and denying the crime means committing it once again.”

Putin, on Tuesday, ordered the organizing committee, established for the 70th anniversary celebration of the victory of the Anti-Fascist War on May 9 in Moscow, to effectively counter worrying attempts to “rewrite history”.

“This is a very important work to involve the young people in preserving historical memory about the events of the Great Patriotic War, about the key role of the Soviet Union in the victory over Nazism,” a Kremlin statement quoted Putin.

More than a dozen countries are sending their military units to take part in the victory parade at the Red Square in Moscow on May 9th, which marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the war.

26 countries, including China, Greece, Vietnam, Netherlands, Egypt, have confirmed their attendance at the celebrations in Russia.

Russian and Chinese Presidents will exchange state visits to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II this year.

“As two of the main battlefields in Asia and Europe during World War Two, China and Russia will hold a series of celebrations, and state leaders will attend commemorations held in each other’s country,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying in January this year.

China’s War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression, led to the death of some 20 million Chinese, according to Beijing’s estimates. It ended with Tokyo’s World War II defeat in 1945.

On May 9, Russia commemorates the sacrifice of the millions who fought and died to bring down the Third Reich and end Hitler’s expansionist whims.

Although most Western historians believe that 22 million Soviets died in the Great Patriotic War, Russian sources put the number higher – at 27 million people.

Russia’s Red Army lost 8.5 million troops – a figure comparable only with German losses. Another 18 million were civilians who died as a result of Hitler’s genocide.



6 Responses to Putin echoes Chinese President, warns against “distorting history”

  1. Shelia Reply

    March 18, 2015 at 7:45 am

    It isn’t the first time Russia was written out of history. It was Russia and her allies that stopped Napoleon Bonaparte in 1814-1815, even though Western historians tend to only remember the British vitory at Waterloo. That may have had something to do with why Britain and Louis Napoleon’s France attacked Russia in the Crimea, even after Nicholas I had made a trip to London to try to prevent the war from happening. And Western historians refuse to acknowledge the Russian contribution in WWII, so I am not surprised at the present string of lies and innuendos. Conveniently, the way the US came into being at the cost of the native Americans and the rampant racism has been conveniently forgotten. So has the US and UK attempts to first overthrow the Tsar through the elite’s funding of the Communists and then their troops trying fighting the communists after WWI. Plus, it was NATO that was formed first, check the dates, and then the Warsaw Pact in response. And now, here is NATO at the Russian border, proclaiming that Russia has nothing to fear. What hogwash! Alexander III had it right. Russia’s allies are its army and navy. Update that to include its air force and missiles, and hopefully an new round of real friends in the BRICs that might actually bring off a new era for the world.

    • Ann Reply

      March 19, 2015 at 10:33 am

      Right on.

  2. Marlene Reply

    March 18, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    Chinese President Xi Jinping said at a war commemoration event in December that “forgetting history means betrayal and denying the crime means committing it once again.”
    If the truth be told, both World Wars could have been avoided, but were rigged by the self serving big wigs of powerful nations, uncaring of the cataclysmic annihilation of human lives with medals of honor given to those who survived and fought brave battles for their masters.
    However, more pressing than ever before, people the world over want the truth about what really happened, have the right to know the unadulterated truth of this dark history, which the west refuses to face or own up to. As both Presidents Putin and Xi Jinping stated, this will serve that these unspeakable horrors are never repeated or visited on humankind again, as present day armaments could and probably would, wipe out both the human species and our precious fragile planet.
    From internet bloggers’ vicious comments and verbal attacks on each other, it is clear that man’s aggression is as unbridled and primitive as ever, as is substantiated by the senseless atrocities committed in Eastern Ukraine and the ongoing barbarities continuing daily in the ME and many countries all over the world. Should the world be privy to documentaries presenting the truth of WWI and II, this may indeed serve to be a wake up call to stop war altogether and through sensible negotiations, arriving at solutions to all conflicts.

    • DarkEyes Reply

      March 19, 2015 at 9:02 pm

      Fully agree with you, Marlene, well said.

      May peace prevail for all of us.

  3. Andrew Minnig Reply

    March 22, 2015 at 10:54 pm

    NATO was created in response to fears generated by the Soviet Union’s failure to live up to its promise of free and fair post-war elections in eastern Europe, and its clear intent to establish a permanent and ever-spreading hegemony in the region. The history of the region up to 1989-90, and subsequent developments, is an incontestable testament to Soviet imperialism. A response to this observation by claiming a matrix of CIA inspired anti-Soviet plotting as the true cause of grief in eastern Europe is a betrayal of fundamental logic. ( One can still ask what are the Russians doing in Kaliningrad?) Yet, despite the U.S. also pursuing its imperial interests, you can not make a parallel historical case vis-a-vis western Europe. That would be an historical distortion of the first order.

    One problem in the search for peace in the current arena of conflict in central and eastern Europe is to ask just when in time do we stop the historical clock in establishing the basis of negotiations over relative spheres of influence. For instance, for most of its history, until its dismemberment in the 18th century, Poland was the dominant military and cultural power in the region. In 1920-21, newly recreated, it fought a war with a now Bolshevik Russia. The Soviets had maintained the same imperial ambitions as the reactionary czarist government they had overthrown, and the Polish-Soviet war was their refusal to recognize the legitimate reassertion of Polish identity, as was the 1939 dismemberment of the Polish state, and the post-war subordination of Polish self-interest to Soviet economic and political interests.

    So, the question is: what does it mean for Poland – in the deepest interest of its history and its sovereignty – or the Baltic states, or, ultimately Ukraine for that matter, to be told that NATO membership is destabilizing.

    Destabilizing to whom – and why? Do we remember the time when we all thought that Russia would be the single largest component in a united and stable Europe? I maintain the problem is the chronic inability of Russia to subsume its sense of historical destiny under a new post-imperial identity like the idea of “Europe”. The irony is that Russia’s current view of itself is perfectly mirrored in the renewed American right-wing’s equally destabilizing devotion to the idea of “American Exceptionalism.”

  4. Philip Reply

    March 23, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    Two problems with this;
    1) Hollywood has consistently produced films as if the US won the entire war. Ever since the 40s when the SU was officially the ally…
    2) Noone in the West (hardly) knows about the Soviet effort in WW2. And by and large noone is interested. The West is the world’s most disinterested culture re asian nations/cultures. Its very self-centred/deluded.
    3) Noone in the West cares that 20-30 milliom Soviets lost threir lives. Or that 18 million Germans were displaced from the Eastyern Provinces of the Old Germany. Or that millions of German women were raped by Soviet troops in revenge esp. Siberian troops.
    4) this is why the Anglo-Americans can start a war in the Ukraine and noone in Anglo-America cartes, gives a damn, or if they do, they buy the Putin is Stalin and Russia is the SU reincarnated’ line.
    5) Anglo-Americans are today the world’s No1 warmongers. Yet their pops don’t give a damn.
    6) Kruschev stsated at that famous gathering in the SU in the 50s thst Stain was a mass murderer. So this is Khrushchev not Wstern propaganda.
    7) Stalin ruled by failry brutal and barbaric methods in the 30s and under wartime conditions. This is left out of official Russian history. He killed up to 20 million Ukr just to sell Ukr wheat to pay for American factories. To my knowledge noone has deied this. Yet it is not in official Russian histories.
    So everyone rewrites history. Depends who you want to believe…

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