Images of Victory: the Memory of World War II as a Political Weapon

Why the West is trying to rewrite the history of the World War?

Each time when Victory Day on May 9 is coming, I never cease to wonder at how topical and psychologically acute the Second World War remains in the public consciousness. Almost three quarters of a century have already passed since the end of the war, the tons of literature dedicated to the history of this human catastrophe. But the questions about who is the victim and who is the executioner, who is the winner and who is defeated, who is the occupier and who is the liberator are relevant to the present day.

As if there were neither the Nuremberg War Crime Trials in 1945-1946 nor the Crimean Conference of the heads of the leading allied powers of the Anti-Hitler Coalition in 1945 which is dedicated to establishing the postwar world order. Nowadays none of the eyewitnesses and chroniclers of those events left alive. Other times have come, times of constructors and destructors, interpreters and mythmakers, creating their own images of the war, each of which is able to become a direct denial of someone else's image.

Such perseverance in the reformatting of the memory of the historical event almost 80 years ago does not seem strange if we understand that it is used as a tool in the current global political confrontation. Rewritten history legitimizes the emergence of new coalitions of allies and opponents, and new fault lines and conflicts that emerged in the system of international relations in the XXI century. The main point of these efforts is Russia’s deprivation of the status of the victorious country and endowing it with all possible negative characteristics. As a result, Russia appears in the eyes of the West as an occupier instead of liberator, aggressor instead of defender, victim instead of executioner. Recent examples: attempts of the West to isolate Russia in celebrating Victory Day on May 9 in contrast with the European date on May 8. Black myths about Russia are being broadcast in movies and various publications, where the Red Army represents in an unfavorable light. In its turn, the USA appears to be a true winner and liberator. Thus, all countries adjoining to the American coalition are in the camp of historical winners, regardless of the role they played during World War II. The world will believe it if the USA convinces everybody that the Soviet Union started the war and occupied Europe. It is noteworthy that this has already been written in the textbooks of several European countries.

Millions of people in many countries are waiting for this solemn day to celebrate and honor the memory of the victims. This time our national action “Immortal regiment” became the target of provocations. What can we oppose it? Same as always - our undying historical memory, faith, and love for the Motherland.

World War II