Staunton, Jan. 20 – Vladimir Putin and his entourage are “the genetic heirs, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the Molotov-Ribbentrop era,” Andrey Kolesnikov says; and they either directly borrow or present in a caricatured way the very same ideas that their predecessors used.
That becomes obvious if one examines the speech of Stalin’s foreign minister, Vyacheslav Molotov, to the USSR Supreme Soviet on March 29, 1940 and then comparing it to what Vladimir Putin has said in recent days about his own war in Ukraine, the New Times columnist continues (newtimes.ru/articles/detail/234516).
In his remarks, Molotov insisted that the Finnish war, one that highlighted the weakness of the Red Army, in fact was and must be seen to be a great victory for Stalin and the Soviet government. The Soviet foreign minister’s logic about Finland followed exactly the same line that Putin’s logic about Ukraine does now.
According to Molotov, “in the war with Finland, the Red Army fought not only Finnish troops but also with the combined forces of many countries.” Moscow’s war was entirely “defensive in nature;” and it was the Finns and their allies who committed horrific war crimes not the heroic soldiers of the Red Army.
All one has to do to see that Putin is the true heir of Molotov is to substitute the word “Ukraine” for the word “Finland,” the term “Russia” for “the Soviet Union,” and “the collective West” for the concert of “imperialist powers.” Once one does that, Kolesnikov says, everything becomes clear including the continuity with Stalin.
Most important, it explains the use of violence and propaganda as the chief means of “governing the country and intoxicating its population” with false dreams, the analyst says.