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Posted by on 10. november, 2014

Putin’s New Nostalgia

Putin’s New Nostalgia

http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/nyrblog/2014/nov/10/putin-nostalgia-stalin-hitler/

Timothy Snyder, professor i historie og forfatter av boken Dødsmarkene, Europa mellom Hitler og Stalin, har skrevet mange gode analyser av hendelsene i Ukraina siden Euromaidan startet i november 2013. De fleste av analysene finner du på The New York Review of Books‘ hjemmesider.

I sin siste artikkel tar Snyder for seg President Putin’s nyfortolkning av Molotov-Ribbentrop-avtalen mellom Nazi-Tyskland og Sovjetunionen i august 1939.I avtalens hemmelige protokoll ble Øst-Europa delt mellom Hitler og Stalin, og denne overenskomsten fikk reelle konsekvenser da Polen ble angrepet både av Hitlers soldater fra vest og Stalins Røde Armé fra øst, 17. september 1939.

Snyder viser til at denne delen av historien har blitt underkommunisert i både Sovjetunionen og i det post-sovjetiske Russland. Når Putin nå gjør forsøk på å avdramatisere avtalens moralske betydning, har dette viktige implikasjoner. Snyder skriver:

What is happening is an attempt by the Kremlin to move from one account of Russia in World War II to another—a shift in national historical memory that would have implications for all of Europe. Two versions of the commemoration of the war were always available because the Soviet Union fought on both sides of the war. In the first part of the war, from 1939 to 1941 the Soviet Union was a German ally, fighting in the eastern theater and supplying Germany with the minerals, oil, and food it needed to make war against Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and most importantly France and Britain.

After Hitler betrayed Stalin and the Wehrmacht invaded the USSR in June 1941, the Soviet Union was suddenly on the other side, and soon found itself in a grand alliance with Britain and the United States. For decades, official Soviet accounts of the war passed over the first part in silence and celebrated Soviet feats of arms in the second.

Denne endrede kursen i den nasjonale historiefortellingen om Sovjetunionens rolle i andre verdenskrig er en indikasjon på at Putin nå søker allierte i Europa som støtter hans streben etter en såkalt multipolar verdensorden.

Just as Stalin sought to turn the most radical of European forces, Adolf Hitler, against Europe itself, so Putin is allying with his grab bag of anti-European populists, fascists, and separatists. His allies on the far right are precisely the political forces that wish to bring an end to the current European order: the European Union.

Hvorvidt President Putin lykkes med sitt politiske spill, gjenstår selvfølgelig å se. For Ukrainas del ligger Europas moralske bedømming av Russlands folkerettsstridige overtramp i potten.

The Kremlin has continuously presented its intervention in Ukraine as resistance to European aggression. This is all a bit strange. The Russian invasion of Ukraine precipitated a rupture with the West that, from the point of view of protecting Russia’s basic interests, makes absolutely no sense. This was Russia’s choice, and it hardly seems a masterpiece of strategic thinking. Now the Kremlin’s tortured search for a justification and precedent has led to the jettisoning of one of the basic moral foundations of postwar politics: the opposition to wars of aggression in Europe in general and the Nazi war of aggression in 1939 in particular.

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