History is there to teach us, but some choose to ignore it.
In June of 1941, the Germans invaded Russia, with whom they had both political and economic pacts. As they crossed the Western borders, the Russian people were actually pleased to see them, and I believe they even waved welcoming flags. They were eager to be rid of the oppressive Russian regime, and saw the Germans as their saviours.
So, how did the Germans react to this friendliness? In typical German fashion; they shot them!
They ended-up slaughtering Millions of civilians, as well as 3.3 Million Russian prisoners of war. After the shock, the Russians soon organised themselves, and the Germans were made to retreat.
In present day Russia, the civilians are deprived of reliable news, and refuse to believe that their own troops (sons) would go into Ukraine to bomb and kill. They proudly declare that 'the Ukrainians are our friends and neighbours, and Putin would NEVER do that'. I wonder if the Germans said the same about Hitler in 1941?
If one wishes to win 'hearts and minds' it's better to be nice to whoever you are invading; not slaughter them. Had the Russians recently entered Ukraine with parcels of Vodka, food, and warm clothing, people might have welcomed them. They might even have tolerated a change of government had it promised investment, stability, and prosperity.
The best way to alienate people is to mimic the German Unternehmen Barbarossa, and destroy and slaughter everything in your path.
The Russians, more than anyone, should have realised that!
I grew up near the border to the GDR and Tchechoslovakia, and there were lots of refugees from the former eastern parts of Germany who had had to flee from the Russian army in 1945. Whenever they or people from the Soviet occupation zone talked about the atrocities of the Soviet soldiers against German civilians, I reminded them of what the Nazi army had done in Russia. For me and a lot of Germans the Russians were the liberators from the Nazis.ReplyDelete
This changed in 1968 when I saw pictures of the Russian tanks rolling through Prague. It is a miracle that the Solidarnosh movement in Poland could prevail. And now Putin wants to establish the grand old Soviet Union again. I don´t think the Ukrainians would have sold their relative freedom for food and Vodka.
Hilde in Germany
Hilde in Germany
They might have tolerated them if they'd know the alternative.Delete
Yes, maybe they might have. Maybe it also was a mistake to give Ukraine defense weapons, because otherwise they would have had to surrender quickly, avoiding a lot of bloodshed.Delete
But Poland and the Baltic states were and are still afraid that they would be the next on Putin´s list after the occupation of Ukraine.
I do hope he keeps his ambitions to just Ukraine, if he advances further it really could start WW3.Delete
So many threads are drawn and tied to what once was.Especially if personal and national history is related to these areas.ReplyDelete
I know your feelings, and I think you know mine.Delete
I think there will be memories in Ukraine of Holodomor, in 1934, and the acts of StalinReplyDelete
And all the memories will be of death and destruction.Delete
Even if it all stopped now, the deep wounds that Putrid has inflicted would take generations to heal and even then there would still be scars. It is indeed enlightening to compare what is happening right now with events surrounding WWII.ReplyDelete
He's creating his legacy of being an utter bastard. Well earned.Delete
The Ukainians hate Russia and have never forgiven Stalin for the starvation of millions of Ukrainians in the early 1930s. Nothing has changed, they want independence from Russia and the deep wounds to which your commenter above referred were already there for decades. Nothing has changed in terms of hatred for Russia.ReplyDelete
And yet they make themselves even more hated (if that's possible).Delete
To post-war Ukrainians, Stalingrad is their parents' and grandparents' history. What Putrid is doing is here and now, not some painful tale of long ago. These are new wounds.Delete
Young and old alike know their history in Ukraine and hate Stalin and it is still an open wound. All monuments to the famine are alive and adorned each week. Yes this is new history but the old is very much known and not forgotten.Delete
Perhaps the commenter needs to check the famine of 1933/34 where betweem 3 and 5 million Ukrainians starved to death at the hands of Stalin. Reading his comment again leads me to conclude he is not aware ofvl the history of Ukrainian suffering at the hands of Russian.Delete
History was not his favourite subject in school, he took no interest in it. He should try to catch up on it now with all his free time. He has had free time for years.Delete
As shown, sadly, history repeats itself. The question remains, "What will it take to stop the Russian assault on Ukraine?" Actions thus far have proven unsuccessful.ReplyDelete
The world is frightened of him. He is unpredictable and ruthless. What can they do other than impose sanctions? He knows his power.Delete
History not taught is history forgotten.ReplyDelete
And many countries hide their history, from shame.Delete