The Putin Youth

Saturday, July 28, 2007

You may be asking yourself why I titled this entry as I did, well that's because This Article gives us a chilling look at something that's going on in Russia right now. Thousands of young people attend these camps and undergo some lessons, and physical fitness drills, and most disturbing of all are encouraged to procreate "for the glory of the motherland". Not only that but those who have gone through these camps show an increasing amount of racists and xenophobic views.

What I find to be the most disturbing thing of all though is the historical revisionism that's going on in Putin's Russia. Making Stalin look like a great leader who did more good than bad and who's "mistakes" can be overlooked. The article quotes Putin,

""Political repression was used to mobilise not only rank-and-file citizens but also the ruling elite," it says. In other words, Stalin wanted to make the country strong, so he may have been a bit harsh at times. At any time since the collapse of Soviet totalitarianism in the late 1980s, that would have seemed a nauseating whitewash. Now, it is treated as bald historical fact."

I don't know about you but that just sent chills down my spine. The fact that a whole generation is growing up learning that is just too much to handle. These views have also taken hold of many young people in Russia right now and in fact

"Terrifyingly, the revived Soviet view of history is now widely held in Russia. A poll this week of Russian teenagers showed that a majority believe that Stalin did more good things than bad."

Through historical revisionism and some very skewed vies on history itself the Russian government is drastically changing a whole generation's views on not only themselves but on the world, especially the Western countries.

"Problematic pages in our history exist," Mr Putin said last week. But: "we have less than some countries. And ours are not as terrible as those of some others." He compared the Great Terror of 1937, when 700,000 people were murdered in a purge by Stalin's secret police, to the atom bomb on Hiroshima.

The comparison is preposterous. A strong argument can be made that by ending the war quickly, the atom bombs saved countless lives.

Franklin D Roosevelt and Harry Truman-may have failed to realise that nuclear weapons would one day endanger humanity's survival. But, unlike Stalin, they were not genocidal maniacs.

As the new cold war deepens, Mr Putin echoes, consciously or unconsciously, the favourite weapon of Soviet propagandists in the last one.

Asked about Afghanistan, they would cite Vietnam. Castigated for the plight of Soviet Jews, they would complain with treacly sincerity about discrimination against American blacks. Every blot on the Soviet record was matched by something, real or imagined, that the West had done."

There is no doubt that Russia is a major player in world politics. It's close relationships with China only makes this scarier. Historical Revisionism is a terrible thing and one that not only plagues Russia. Not only is it wrong for a government to eliminate horrible things from its past but to change and skew it's history thus getting rid of the fundamentals and principles on which the country was based is also wrong which is something that more and more it seems the US is doing.

If you can check out that article back in the first paragraph, it's a really good read.