Soviet War Memorial UK (9.5.2017): Commemorating the Soviet Victory Over Nazi Germany and Exposing Bourgeois Duplicity

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The combined military forces of Hitler’s Nazi Germany unconditionally surrendered to the Soviet Red Army in Berlin on May 8th, 1945, but confirmation of this Soviet Victory over fascism did not reach the Kremlin (in Moscow) until the following day – May 9th, 1945. Although the Soviet Union was an ‘ally’ of the capitalist West during WWII – recently released UN Papers confirm that the Hitler-admiring Winston Churchill and President Roosevelt of the US, conspired to bring-down the USSR through encouraging its fight against Nazi Germany, whilst covertly supporting various rightwing insurgencies dotted throughout occupied areas of the USSR and Eastern Europe.

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When the Soviet Red Army ‘liberated’ the Ukraine from the disastrous and bloody Nazi German occupation, for instance, it encountered a highly organised ‘nationalistic’ Ukrainian resistance (often commanded by German officers, and armed with British and US weaponry). The Soviet Red Army, however, moved forever onward toward Germany, pursuing the retreating Hitlerite forces, and was replaced in the area with NKVD forces (a special militarised police). The Soviet Authorities treated this fascist insurgency as an ‘internal’ matter to avoid the embarrassment of having to publically state that two of its allies – the UK and US – were openly financing and arming fascist insurgencies within the USSR and elsewhere. In a vicious and brutal police action, it took the NKVD two years to break the back of this Western insurgency – with the bulk of the main fighting being over by 1947. However, so entrenched in hateful ideology was the Western Ukraine, that occasional flare-ups of neo-Nazi activity continued into the 1950’s, a trend that has been revived in recent times, with David Cameron of the UK and Barack Obama of the US actively supporting a broad EU strategy of weakening modern Russia through neo-Nazi insurgency (particularly via the ‘Maidan’ neo-Nazi revolt in Western Ukraine).

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Of course, despite the fact that various factions of the British Communist Party regularly attend the Soviet War Memorial (including the Communist Party of Britain, the New Communist Party, and the Communist Party of Great Britain – Marxist-Leninist), together with the Stalin Society (an adjunct of the CPGB-ML), the rhetoric of the mainstream politicians that attends remains decidedly ‘bourgeois’ in nature, and occasionally openly ‘anti-Russian’ in presentation. This schizophrenic (hypocritical) approach often happens around an ethnic Russian presence of which sees hundreds of individuals and families proudly holding-up portraits of family members who died fighting for the Soviet Union during the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945).

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Many modern Russians also unfurl Red Flags containing yellow hammer and sickle emblems – making direct pro-Communist statements to each other – and anyone in ear-shot. This Russian presence – which is the entire point of a Soviet War Memorial – is more or less ignored by the hundreds of British people in attendance, and the various representatives of the British Armed Forces – primarily because there is a sense of bourgeois ’embarrassment’ with the association of the memorial with historical and contemporary notions of ‘Socialism’ and ‘Communism’.

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The simple fact of the matter is that without the Bolshevik Leadership of the USSR – Russia would not have possessed the direction of will-power, nor the material capability to have defeated Nazi Germany. Millions of peasants in the USSR were educated in Socialist duty (and selfless hard work) to build a better human society on Earth – and the extra-ordinary death-toll suffered by the Soviet people is testament to their belief in this Communist ideal. Although the bourgeois (and revisionist) narrative expressed by the British organisers of this event always uses the low estimate of ’27 million’ casualties, others put the death-toll around at least 40 million (with a probably more accurate figure standing at around 34.5 million – arrived at through the study population shift and change).

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Usually, a group of Soviet Veterans are flown to the UK each year to attend these ceremonies and this year just five made the trip. As the years pass, fewer and fewer British and Soviet Veterans remain, and this is seen in dwindling numbers, and the onset of advanced age. This year, for the first time that I have ever seen, the veteran flag bearers were all provided with chairs – as I was told that the youngest is now in their 80’s – with many being well into their 90’s. These brave individuals in the past have stood for over an hour proudly holding-up their respective flags, but this is not an easy task for those advanced in age.

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Of course, the various mixture of British politicians and establishment figures all gave their particular bourgeois ‘spin’ on the event – which is often sickening to experience, particularly if those in attendance adhere to Socialist or Communist ideals. Obviously not all British Veterans necessarily have such views – but surprisingly many did. Neil Coyle – Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Bermondsey and Old Southwark – expressed the need to be forever vigilant against the resurgence of fascism, and expressed relief that France recently rejected a fascist candidate in that country’s national elections (but simultaneously failed to mention that 11 million French people actually voted for that fascist candidate). Obviously, due to Soviet War Memorial’s association with the defeat of the political rightwing – no Conservative Party representative was present. However, Simon Hughes – the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Bermondsey and Old Southwark, demonstrated enough LibDem duplicity to compensate for the Tory absence. Simon Hughes expressed the expected condemnation of ‘fascism’, whilst immediately ‘negating’ his own statement (in typical LibDem fashion) by bizarrely suggesting that individuals can hold ‘nationalist’ sentiments, but remaining ‘helpful’ in principle to other countries. This ‘White’ gentleman (being unquestionably ‘at home’ in his Eurocentricism), appeared completely ‘unaware’ that ‘nationalism’ is the basis of all racism, and therefore the very edifice upon which destructive fascist ideology is built, sustained and manifest in the world.

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In all my years of attending the Soviet War Memorial, I have heard the excellent leadership skills of Joseph Stalin eulogised by many attendees, but have never heard any positive references to the British anti-Socialist and Hitler-admiring Winston Churchill, and yet today I heard two very out of place utterances. One was during the general introduction – made I believe by Philip Matthews of the Soviet Memorial Trust – and the second by the LibDem Simon Hughes. This is even more peculiar as this week saw the UN reveal the extent to which Churchill was prepared to go to ensure a Soviet defeat at the hands of the Nazi Germans! Furthermore, any relatively ‘sane’ individual would never automatically associate the politically rightwing Winston Churchill with the defeat of any form of fascism – particularly as he opposed the development of the Welfare State and the National Health System. Whilst Churchill is renowned for his ‘moving’ speeches – many do not understand that a team of scriptwriters devised these utterances for him, and whilst he called for unity in the face of Nazi German terror, he sat safely in a Whitehall (bomb-proof) bunker, smoking Cuban cigars and eating caviar – whilst ordinary British people starved and died in pursuit of his vision of racial purity. As a consequence, Churchill was only ever popular throughout the middle class, and was quite literally hated amongst the working class.

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Lastly, whilst all present made anti-fascist platitudes to one another, no one mentioned the rise of ‘elected’ fascism in the UK since 2010, and the rightwing ‘Austerity’ inflicted upon the British people by the Tory and LibDem Parties. In fact, so bad has been this destructive policy, that thousands of vulnerable, poor, or disabled British died between 2010 and 2015 – as their benefits were suddenly cut, and medical care withdrawn. So bad was this death-toll that after a 2016 investigation, the United Nations found the Tory and LibDem Coalition Government ‘Guilty of Crimes Against Humanity’ for the deaths of at least 10,000 disabled people. Today, the ordinary people of Britain are living in a democratic system that allows a small middle class to keep electing rightwing governments (including ‘New Labour’) that deliberately pursue rightwing policies that are hurtful toward the working class. This demonstrates that the fight against fascism is not only in the past (as the bourgeois would have us believe), but exists here and now in the present.

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