01.07.2020 Author: Christopher Black

Putin, On Historical Revisionism And Its Dangers

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Erasmus wrote in his famous work, In Praise of Folly, that ‘man’s mind is so formed that it is far more susceptible to falsehood than to truth’. He could have added that telling falsehoods is the habitual practice of cowards afraid of the power of truth; for such is the state of the world that telling people lies about the world and history to maintain power is seen, by the United States and its allies, as a necessary condition of their existence. They see no shame in it because they have sacrificed morality on their blood-soaked altar of lust, lust for power, lust for riches, and so, necessarily, their lust for war.

Today, 75 years after the fascist state of Nazi Germany was crushed by the Red Army, after the German people were liberated from the criminals who had brought destruction upon them by invading and devastating the Soviet Union, whose many peoples rose up as one mighty, unstoppable, force to destroy the armies that had descended upon them, the propagandists of the United States, of Britain, Germany, Canada and other nations held in the grip of American hegemony, are pouring out the most foul lies about the events of World War II, denying the heroic resistance of the Soviet peoples in their fight against the fascists.

Today western governments and their controlled media try to claim that they alone saved the world, that the Soviet Union had no significant role defeating the Nazis. Worse, they rehabilitate the Nazis by making the absurd claim that the Soviet Union was equally responsible for the breakout of war, diminishing the responsibility of Hitler and the responsibility of the British and French who sold out Czechoslovakia to him in 1938, and then sat by as Poland was invaded, all the while encouraging Hitler to attack the Soviet Union instead of themselves.

To do this they invent an illusion they call history, and sell this illusion to their people as facts, knowing as Goebbels did, that the bigger the lie, the more easily the people are duped, and by being duped, are reduced to unthinking automatons ready to obey the will of those who dupe them.

Napoleon once said, though he was not the first to say it, that “history is a fable agreed upon.” But this statement was made at a time when history was based on ancient reports of doubtful origin and the facts of events were obscure. But the facts of the causes, context and events of World War II are well known. There is no dispute about them; they are known from documents of the time, recorded on paper, on film, in radio broadcasts, in the memories of the people who experienced them. The facts are known. The history is clear.

Yet, the depth of their lies and their rapid dissemination in the west is so extensive and corrosive to the common world good that Russian President Putin felt compelled to write his now famous essay, “The Real Lessons of the 75th Anniversary of World War II” that appeared in the American journal, The National Interest on June 18th. It is now a part of the historical record and since it is impossible to comment on it without citing it at length I urge you to read it for yourself;

It is an eloquent presentation of the facts, reminding the world of the role of Britain, France and the United States in assisting the Nazi’s rise to power and domination in Europe and their hope that Hitler would shatter the Soviet Union and overthrow its government and crush socialism. In fact the three nations were willing to support Hitler in his ambitions to control Eastern Europe so long as they got their fair share of the spoils. Robert Hudson, a senior British aide to the British cabinet of Neville Chamberlain, met with the German Ambassador in London on July 29, 1939 after which he made a report to the government, reflecting the views of many in government in the three nations, in which he stated,

“I regarded Russia, China and the various colonial dependencies of the European Powers as areas which would provide almost unlimited openings for capital development and act as outlets for the heavy industry of ourselves, the Germans and the United States; that given the necessary preliminary of a solution of the political questions it ought to be not impossible to work out some forms of economic and industrial collaboration between our three countries…”

To mention Russia as a country that could provide unlimited openings for capital development’ implied the reduction of the Soviet Union to a colony of the capitalist market. Hudson knew that at the time, only by defeating Russia in war could it be reduced to such a status, and it was more than implicit that Germany was to be given a free hand against Russia, to wage war on Russia, if the spoils could be shared.

Russia is now a part of the capitalist system. But western capital did not succeed in completely penetrating and securing control of its markets and resources despite the overthrow of socialism in Russia. And so we see the same fascist forces, creating the scenario for another war against Russia, indeed, against all the countries where they have failed to secure dominance and control. And to create a war scenario they are undermining the international order established at the end of the world war that was established to try to prevent world war. They evade and mock international law, the UN Charter and create a new fascist order they call a “rules based order.” They rehabilitate Nazis and openly support them from Ukraine to Canada. They try to negate the Nuremberg trials that set out the facts of the war in Europe. They claim the right to destroy nations and profit from the chaos. They have done it since 1945 when they demonstrated to the world how ruthless they are by massacring the people of the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as a demonstration of their power and willingness to use it, and now they are preparing their people for another war by corrupting their minds so that the people will not only tolerate a war but call for one. That is the entire objective of their propaganda campaign, which is in nothing less than a crime against humanity.

It is difficult to credit that in these times of abrupt climate change, ecological disaster, of pandemics, economic depression, and all the other issues we face which require global cooperation, that the nations of the west, that is the United States, Europe, Britain, Canada, Australia and Japan are intent on pushing us all to the brink of nuclear war, beyond any shred of human decency, of any concern for humanity and the planet we inhabit. They just don’t seem to give a damn. How society produces these monsters is a question, but the primary question is how we deal with them so that war is averted. For war is closer.

And so Putin’s essay is a call for sanity and respect for history and for the sovereign nations of the world to live as they choose without being pushed around or destroyed by trumped nations of bandits armed to the teeth with weapons of world destruction, and so his call for a summit meeting of the world powers to try to re-establish the international order that has existed since 1945. But will they listen? Will they answer the call?

I will close with the words of Vladimir Putin from his essay, where he states, in part,

“Historical revisionism, the manifestations of which we now observe in the West, and primarily with regard to the subject of the Second World War and its outcome, is dangerous because it grossly and cynically distorts the understanding of the principles of peaceful development, laid down at the Yalta and San Francisco conferences in 1945. The major historic achievement of Yalta and other decisions of that time is the agreement to create a mechanism that would allow the leading powers to remain within the framework of diplomacy in resolving their differences.

“The twentieth century brought large-scale and comprehensive global conflicts, and in 1945 the nuclear weapons capable of physically destroying the Earth also entered the scene. In other words, the settlement of disputes by force has become prohibitively dangerous. And the victors in the Second World War understood that. They understood and were aware of their own responsibility towards humanity,”

And simply ask, what fate awaits us when our leaders’ responsibility towards humanity has, to paraphrase Marx, been thrown into the rubbish bin of history along with history itself?

Christopher Black is an international criminal lawyer based in Toronto. He is known for a number of high-profile war crimes cases and recently published his novel Beneath the Clouds. He writes essays on international law, politics and world events, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”


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