In Russia, the end of World War II is celebrated on May 9. The term is The Great Patriotic War. Actually, this is part of what we call World War II. First and foremost, the Great Patriotic War is the term for what we call the Eastern Front.
The Great Patriotic War at school
The war is being used to build Russian nationalism. In the Russian school, the children learn that Russia in practice won the war alone. On D-Day, they learn nothing about the fact that there was war in all of Europe is barely mentioned. According to Russian school, the Soviet Union won the war against Nazism. In the propaganda that Putin infiltrates the children, in practice Nazism is synonymous with the whole of Western Europe.
It is hardly mentioned that the Soviet Union received significant weapons aid from the United States. To the extent mentioned, it is presented as meaningless. In Putin’s propaganda, it is portrayed that the countries in Eastern Europe that gained communist rule after World War II were saved by the Soviet Union against Nazism.
Important building block for nationalism
Using the “Great Patriotic War” to build up under Russian nationalism is well known. This has been going on for several years. The war in Ukraine is completely justified without any kind of factual correctness that it is a fight against Nazism. In other words, it means a struggle against the forces the children have learned that the Soviet Union in its time won alone.
Liberating a Slavic people from Nazism is well received among Russians who have been brainwashed from kindergarten, through school and into adulthood. In a country where the regime has control over the mass media and where “falsification of history” is banned, most of the people will naturally believe in propaganda. To ban “falsification of history” means, in reality, to ban all history that is not the way the authorities want it to be presented. Historical research is in fact censored.
Nationalism a prerequisite for Putin
Putin is probably completely dependent on a strong nationalism to maintain his position. A country and a people who feel threatened are happy to gather around their leader. Putin uses the proven “Great War of the Fatherland” to build up under Russian nationalism.
The war in Ukraine is increasingly portrayed as a war with Western Europe, NATO and the United States. It is the Western values of democracy and freedom that are dangerous for a totalitarian regime like Putin’s. Putin has great fortune. Nobody knows how big it is. It is well hidden, perhaps he is the richest in the world. Putin has economic interests in governing Russia. He does so with nationalism and anti-democratic measures.
May 9, we see several brainwashed children proudly wearing uniforms bought in stores that make them proudly look like soldiers in the Russian army. Soldiers sent to Ukraine to kill, loot and rape. Russia’s celebration of peace is perfectly OK. Russia’s way of doing that is to get nauseous.