Staunton, July 11 – Russians and some Germans refer to the Germans of Russia as “’Russian Germans,’” Sergey German says; “but this name is the greatest possible lie and provocation, invented by thodse who for many years have considered us a third-class illiterate tribe capable only of herding cattle, cutting wood, mining coal and cutting timber.”
German, the son of Germans deported by Stalin who has been living in Germany since 2002, says that “by calling us ‘Russian Germans,’ the Russian authorities are manipulating our feelings” and suggesting we are almost Russians. “This is a lie because we never were Russians and never had the rights given them from birth” (vestnikcivitas.ru/pbls/4087
“For many years,” he says, “Soviet power did everything possible so that the Germans would occupy a lower social rank and be more illiterate than other Soviet peoples. More denigrated and more rightless.” But despite this, now, Russians want to call “all Germans born in the post-Soviet space Russian Germans.”
Millions of Germans lived earlier in Ukraine, in Central Asia, and in the Baltic republics did not have any relationship to Russia and Russians,” raising the question “why then do they still call us ‘Russian Germans?” One reason is that thanks to Soviet oppression, many Germans born in Russia don’t speak their national language but only Russian.
“But these circumstances do not give a sense of attachment to a land and its dominant nation,” he says. Instead, “it gives birth to hatred to the country of one’s birth.” And thus we declare “We are not ‘Russian Germans. Not ‘Germano-Russians’ and not ‘Rosso-Germans.’ We are Germans who were born in the USSR or in Russia.”