Thursday, January 4, 2018

A Final Compromise Solution to the Problem of What to Do with Lenin’s Body?

Paul Goble

            Staunton, January 4 – Since the end of Soviet times, the disposition of Lenin’s body now on display in the mausoleum on Red Square has divided Russian society, with many believing that the time has come to give him a burial in a cemetery in Moscow or some other Russian city while others maintain that he is “part of their history” and should remain untouched.

            Senator Oleg Morozov, Tatarstan’s representative in the Federation Council, says that the best solution is for Lenin to be buried right where he is “in the Mausoleum on Red Square” and thereby establishing on that site “a memorial for memory and reconciliation” (

            Arguing that the time has come to bury Lenin, Morozov says that it is better to take this step not by referendum as some have insisted but rather by the adoption of “a special federal law about the status of the Mausoleum. The reason to dispense with a referendum, he says, is that it would divide the country and might not offer overwhelming approval for any given course.

            If Russians voted 70 to 30, that would be one thing, the Senator continues; but if they voted 51 to 49, then what?  But by burying Lenin where he is and not making any move to tear down the Mausoleum, neither side would get everything it wanted or be confronted by everything it feared. 

            Morozov says that he personally doesn’t favor moving quickly, but if pressures to do something mount, then the variant he is proposing would be “optimal” because it could be accepted both by those favoring burial like Ramzan Kadyrov and many in the Orthodox Church and those like the KPRF who remain totally opposed.

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