Human rights’ activists: The raising of Stalin monuments in Russian cities is nothing short of a well-calculated public relations campaign

Human rights’ activists: The raising of Stalin monuments in Russian cities is nothing short of a well-calculated public relations campaign

„The series of attemots to raise Stalin monuments in various parts of the country and in Jalta (Ukraine) is nothing short of a well-calculated public relations campaign. To be more precise: this action is not only staged by the communists, but also by the Kremlin“. This is the statement of the chairman of the board of the Krasnoyarsk „Memorial“ Organization of Historical Illumination and Education, Human Rights and Charity, Aleksey Babiy, made to the press correspondant of the „Caucasian knot“ (newspaper) during an interview held on the occasion of of yesterday’s inauguration of a monument to the honour of the Soviet dictator in the city of Digora, North Ossetia.

In his opinion, the attempts to raise Josef Stalin monuments and busts in various cities sjow a striking analogy. „Somebody is obviously interested in keeping up unrest among the population with regard to the subject of „Stalin““, says Aleksey Babiy, who is fighting against the erection of a monument to the honour of the Soviet dictator in native Krasnoyarsk.

Babiy denied yesterday’ communication of the „Interfaks“ news agency about the erection of a Stalin monument. According to his words the bronze bust showing the initiator of the Great Terror was raised by the municipal KPRF organization on the territory of their headquarters in Markovskiy street for merely three hours on May 6 this year – just for „presentation“ purposes. Up to this stage the communists had been able to get their will regarding an official raising of the bust. However, the authorities had refused to give their final consent. Almost at exactly the same time, on May 8 this year, a Josef Dzhugashvili monument appeared in the city of Mirniy in Yakutia.

We would remind that a commemoration ceremony was held in the city of Digora, North Ossetia, yesterday, on the occasion of which a Josef Stalin monument was inaugurated, as well. The monument was raised in view of his 26th anniversary, reports the ITAR-TASS news agency. The bust of the „leader of all peoples“ was put up on a pedestal, 5 meters in height, on the initiative and by the financial support of the communists living in the district of Digorsk, Nort-Ossetia.

Shortly before, representatives of the KPRF in Volgograd had procured themselves the author’s copy of a plaster bust showing Stalin, Rossevelt and Churchill. Its creator, Zurab Tsereteli, had donated it to the city. The sculpture is half a meter in height.

According to an „Isvestiya“ newspaper report, Stalin monuments were put up again and again during the past years: in 1998 they raised a bust of the leader inside the Secondary School No. 2 in Chelyabinsk, in 1999 on the Soviet Prospect in Kaliningrad, in July 2003 in the settlement of Tayginka, region of Chelyabinsk, and in October of the same year in Ishim, region of Tyumen.

Before it had been reported that, on the occasion of Josef Stalin’s anniversary, a museum was to be opened to his honour in the capital of Dagestan. The initiators of the museum were members of the „Stalin Movement“ and the Dagestan Committee of the Russian Communist Party. The building which houses the museum is the privately owned house of the chairman of the „Stalin Movement“, Asirkhan Pashaev, who became also famous by showing himself as the leader’s double. Pashaev informed the national news agency that the exhibits he had collected in the course of the past ten years, cover a wall surface of about 80 square meters. His personal collection comprises portraits and photographs showing Stalin, as well as various objects from his era.

Author: Viacheslav Feraposhkin, correspondant of the „Caucasian knot“
http://kavkaz.memo.ru/ 22.12.2005 


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