Staunton, June 17 – Seventy-two percent of Russians see no need for the military Victory parade that Vladimir Putin has rescheduled for June 24, according to a poll conducted byte the Belanovsky Group after the Kremlin leader announced that date. Only 15 percent said it was a good idea. (sbelan.ru/index.php/ru/index.html).
Sixty-two percent of those who oppose holding the parade say that it is an outdated attempt of the authorities to unify the people by making reference to earlier victories, 21 percent say that it is about displaying Russia’s military might, and 18 percent give other answers, the group says (sbelan.ru/index.php/ru/index.html).
Of those who back the parade, 39 percent say it shows respect to veterans, 47 percent respect for traditions, and 14 percent say that it allows one to feel the military power of the country. More than half of both groups – 56 percent – say official articles about the war are full of propaganda, with 37 percent doubting them and only four percent saying they’re true.
Asked how Victory Day should be marked, most said it shouldn’t take the form of parades and salutes but rather providing support for veterans in their old age. Twenty-four percent said that there should be a minute of silence, and 12 percent indicated that there shouldn’t be celebrations but rather memorial events.
Those who took part in the survey who were over 75 and thus had memories of the war were event more opposed to having a Victory parade, with 89 percent of them saying they did not think it was needed and 95 percent saying it was an out of date effort by the authorities to use victories from the past to generate support for itself.
Moreover, 81 percent of this cohort said the Western allies played a key role in the victory, far more than the 46 percent of the sample as a whole who did so. And 48 percent of them had negative things to say about the Soviet high command’s incompetence during the first two years of the war.
These results, the Belanovsky Group says, shows that most Russians view what the Putin regime is doing in this case “as false and insincere;” but “Putin and his entourage do not understand or do not want to understand that the world is changing. Today it is inappropriate to sabre rattle in the false hope that this will help strengthen their own power.”
The Belanovsky Group is led by Sergey Belanovsky who attracted attention a decade ago for predicting the wave of demonstrations which swept through Russia in 2011 and 2012.