An important round-table discussion was held in Moscow yesterday which assessed the role of the Bolsheviks and their leaders in Russian history.
The round-table talks were organized by the All-Russian Committee for the Removal of Lenin! www.netlenin.ru. The discussions were held in the State Duma of the Russian Federation and attended by more than 100 prominent politicians, scientists, historians, and philosophers, many of which tabled papers. Representatives from monarchist groups, Cossacks and the Russian Orthodox Church were also present.
The main purpose of the round-table is to consolidate public opinion from a historical perspective for the future development of Russia. Prominent thinkers, philosophers, scientists, along with representatives of the State Duma will work out a consensus on the moral and historical assessment of the October Revolution of 1917, the criminal activities of the Bolsheviks led by Vladimir Lenin. Of importance to those present will be the discussion of the removal of Lenin's remains from the mausoloeum on Red Square. The talks are considered a landmark, historic and watershed event in modern Russian history.
The main topics of discussion:
1. "Crimes of the Bolsheviks and their leaders. Extremism in the works of Lenin"
On the investigation of crimes committed by the Bolsheviks headed by Lenin himself; and by creating a public commission of inquiry into crimes of Lenin and to study issues relating to the murder of the Emperor Nicholas II and his family;
Speaker: Vladimir Lavrov, Russian historian Doctor of History, Academy of Natural Sciences, Deputy Director of the Institute of Russian History (up to 2011). Head of Research Center of Religion and the Church in Russia (until June 2012). Author of works on the history of the Orthodox Church in Russia, the history of the revolution of 1917 in the Russian Empire.
2. "Bolshevism as the Red Faith"
Speaker: Petr V. Multatuli, Russian historian, author of a contemporary study of Nicholas II.
3. "Evaluation of the Bolshevik era crimes in determining the identity of modern Russian"
Speaker: Alexander Tsipko, Russian expert in the field of social philosophy, political scientist. Senior Researcher, Institute of International Economic and Political Studies. Doctor of Philosophy.
4. "Spiritual and moral assessment of the further preservation of Lenin's body in the mausoleum on Red Square"
Speaker: Fr. Vladimir, a priest of the Russian Orthodox Church and the head of the Moscow Patriarchate Publishing.
5. "Lenin, as a source of inter-ethnic, and religious hatred in Russia"
Speaker: Leonid Simonovich-Niksic Donatovich, Russian public figure, the head of the Union of Orthodox Banner Bearers (SPH), the chairman of the Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods, co-chair of the St. Sergius of the Union of the Russian People, Deputy Chairman Union "Christian Revival", Deputy Chairman of the Society of Russian-Serbian friendship, head of the Russian-Serbian brotherhood.
6. "Cultural, historical and aesthetic background on the dismantling monuments to Lenin in Russia"
Speaker: Vladimir Makrousov, Prominent Russian sculptor, Honored Artist of the Russian Federation, Member of the Artists' Union, Member of the Russian Academy of Arts, the Chairman of the Parish Council of the community of Christ the Savior.
7. "Bolshevik leaders as government assassins"
Speaker: Boris S. Ilizarov, a leading researcher at the Institute of Russian History
8. "Russian legislation in overcoming the consequences of the communist terror"
Speaker: Daniel V. Petrov, Master of Laws (University). He worked as head of the arbitration department of the St. Petersburg City Property Management Committee, Head of the Department of State Policy Law Office "EPAM", Head of the Department of property management "RZD"
9. "Socio-cultural study of historical return is cities and towns of Russia, by the example of Ulyanovsk"
Speaker: Konnov Vladimir Deputy Simbirsk branch of the International Foundation of Slavic Literature and Culture, a public figure in Ulyanovsk.
10. "On the need for the establishment of a permanent anti-Bolshevik and anti-Leninist historial and ideological center"
Speaker: Yuri K. Bondarenko, writer and journalist.
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 22 March, 2013
Why did Vladimir Lenin drive the ultimate rich man's car?
Did he not vow to create a classless state?
Communist revolutionary Vladmir Ilyich Lenin declared that revolutionaries must guard against bourgeois tendencies. And yet, Moscow’s State Historical Museum contains something Lenin owned that is one of the ultimate examples of bourgeois conveyance - a Rolls Royce car, Silver Ghost model complete with fog lamps and all-leather interiors.
What business did the leader of the Communist party have owning such a luxury automobile? How did he come to own it – and why did he keep it?
Early in the Revolution, the Bolsheviks had seized the Tsar's gold, and the Tsar's collection of fine automobiles. There were about 40 motor vehicles in the Tsarist garages and even the Communist leaders could not resist taking a liking to these cars.
So perhaps Lenin owned this Rolls Royce because he got it for free? To be certain, proof was needed to confirm that Tsar Nicholas II was the original owner.
Unfortunately the original documents do not exist. However, when researchers took a closer look at the auto itself, they looked more closely at the chassis number. The chassis number is fixed to the front of the dashboard under the bonnet. With a car this old, it would be surprising if the chassis number could be traced. Or maybe not? Rolls Royce keeps records of all the cars it has manufactured and sold. A request was made to the Rolls Royce head office in London. Incredibly, the original bill of sale was elicited. The purchaser was not Tsar Nicholas II, but an emissary of Vladimir Lenin. The date is 1922.
In the years following the bloody revolution, all industrial nations imposed an embargo, forbidding trade with the Russian Communist State. So how did Lenin manage to do business with a British car maker? A clue lies not in cars, but in planes. Rolls Royce made the best engines for bomber planes and Lenin needed them for his war machine. Lenin asked the British to break the embargo. He knew that Britain was mired in depression, with idle factories and hungry workers. British leaders held their noses and allowed the Bolshevik government to buy several of their most advanced airplane engines. To sweeten the deal, Lenin was given a 15% discount on something else . . . . . a Rolls Royce automobile, a luxury in which he paid £1850.
The Rolls Royce engines helped Lenin and his Bolsheviks win the civil war and impose a brutal totalitarian state.
© The History Channel and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 17 March, 2013
Statue of Lenin in central Ekaterinburg. Photo © Paul Gilbert (2012)
Russian lawmakers believe it is time to remove monuments to the leader of the Bolshevik Revolution, Vladimir Lenin, from town and city squares across the country.
Memorials to such “a controversial figure” should be re-located in museums or alleys with statues of other historic persons, suggested the author of the initiative, Liberal-Democratic party (LDPR) Deputy Aleksandr Kurdyumov.
The idea of “De-Leninization” was welcomed by the ruling United Russia party, writes Izvestia daily.
According to Kurdyumov, the main argument in favor of the removal of monuments is the high cost of maintenance. He says they would be better looked after and safe from vandalism in museums.
Soviet-legacy statues of Vladimir Ulyanov (Lenin) can still be seen in central squares of almost all Russian towns. There is hardly a single settlement in the country without a street named after the Bolshevik leader.
The time has come to get rid of Lenin’s “stranglehold” and leave only monuments that are considered true masterpieces of art and only in those places where local population want to see them, the LDPR lawmaker insists.
It often happens that there no other memorials but to Lenin in Russian towns and that is “unfair” to other outstanding personalities – such as Peter the Great, General Aleksandr Suvorov, Tsar Ivan the Terrible and others.
Under the proposal, municipal authorities should hold referendums to find out where people want the Lenin statues to be placed. If they do not want to see the leader of the 1917 Revolution at all, such monuments should be dismantled, sent to museums or sold to collectors, Kurdyumov suggests. The money received from the sales could be used, for instance, to create new parks.
United Russia’s lawmaker, Valery Trapeznikov agrees that the idea should first be discussed with the people. In the USSR, monuments were erected at the government’s bidding. If now they are dismantled by order of the authorities, “it can lead to a wave of protests,” he told Izvestia.
Meanwhile, the Communist party (KPRF) is strongly opposed to the idea of removing monuments to their key ideologist.
“Lenin is the founding father of the Russian Federation…Same as George Washington in America,” a senior member of the party, Sergey Obukhov stressed. He noted that some laws signed by the Bolshevik leader are still valid in Russia.
Besides that, the destruction of “architectural pieces” of historic value is illegal, the KPRF deputy pointed out.
© Russia Today. 20 November, 2012
Almost one-third of Russians believe the Bolshevik revolution of 1917 jumpstarted the country’s development and opened a new page in its history, according to a poll published on Tuesday, RIA Novosti reports.
However, the share of respondents with a positive view of the revolution has declined over the past decade, from 34 to 27 percent, the All-Russia Center for the Study of Public Opinion on Social and Economic Issues (VTsIOM) poll said.
At the same time the share of the people who see the revolution as “a catastrophe for our country” has increased from 10 percent to 18 percent. About 43 percent of respondents said the root cause of the revolution was the miserable life of the people with 17 percent saying a weak government was a factor and 11 percent blaming the Bolsheviks’ “political unscrupulousness.”
Some 40 percent said the revolution, though a mixed blessing, was inevitable, while 37 percent believed the needless loss of human life and the trouble it caused meant there was no justification for it. Eighteen percent said they would observe Revolution Day on November 7, compared to 16 percent who said they would celebrate National Unity Day on November 4.
© Russkiy Mir. 07 November, 2012
Photo: The cruiser 'Aurora' seen here in 1903, was built during the reign of Emperor Nicholas II.
A legendary naval cruiser that played a symbolic role in the Bolshevik coup of 1917 was officially retired from military service Tuesday.
The cruiser Aurora, built during the reign of Russia's last tsar, Nicholas II, had become a symbol of the Bolshevik Revolution after it issued a blank shot signaling the start of the storming of the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, the seat of the Provisional Government, in October 1917.
The Aurora was decommissioned from the Navy on Tuesday and turned over to the Central Naval Museum, the Rosbalt news agency reported Tuesday, citing unidentified military officials.
Naval officers who were serving on the ship, which had been functioning as a de facto museum, have left the cruiser, leaving only a civilian crew on board, the news agency said.
The changing of personnel on the ship was the culmination of a long-standing conflict between the Navy and local legislators, who protested the decision by Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov to take the ship out of service and transfer it to the museum.
In September, local Communist Party lawmakers wrote a letter to President Vladimir Putin asking him to intervene in the situation to prevent the cruiser from being decommissioned. Putin forwarded the letter to Serdyukov, according to media reports.
Some former Aurora servicemen said the historical ship, which took part in battles against Japan in Russia's war with that country in 1905, won't survive without regular maintenance by a military crew. "Without a trained military personnel, the Aurora might fall into a state of disrepair in less than a year," said Denis Sherba, a former sailor on the ship, RIA-Novosti reported in August.
Putin has not spoken publicly about the case, but he is known to have a negative attitude toward the Bolshevik Revolution, having once called the Bolshevik peace with imperial Germany in 1917 a "betrayal" of national interests.
In June 2009, the Aurora hosted a party thrown by the magazine Russky Pioneer, owned by billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov that was attended by prominent businessmen and government officials. The party touched off a scandal among State Duma deputies, who accused Prokhorov of tarnishing the symbolic ship.
© Moscow Times and RIA Novosti. 16 October, 2012
A senior Russian Orthodox priest has called Vladimir Lenin an "even bigger villain" than Adolf Hitler and backed an effort to check his works for extremism.
Archpriest Dmitry Smirnov, head of church relations with the armed forces and law enforcement, said in an interview that a closer study of Lenin's writings could drastically alter societal beliefs regarding the Bolshevik leader, who he described as an "unscrupulous and utter cynic and villain," Interfax reported.
Soviet authorities ruthlessly suppressed religion, confiscated church properties, and demolished holy sites over their decades in power, leading many church officials to view them with bitter resentment.
Smirnov made his comments Friday in response to a question from Interview on whether he agreed with an effort by Russian Academy of Sciences researcher Vladimir Lavrov to have the Investigative Committee check Lenin's works for extremism.
Smirnov said he backed such an effort but that he doubted the works — which were a fixture on the bookshelves of many Soviet citizens and an obligatory subject of study in Soviet schools — would be banned.
He noted that Leninism, a communist ideology that promotes socialism and a "dictatorship of the proletariat," was also a kind of religion and that a check of Lenin's works would not affect how his staunch devotees viewed him.
Speaking about his belief that Russian cities needed to be rid of the ubiquitous images and place-names that include Lenin, Smirnov referred to efforts in post-World War II Germany to eliminate Hitler's name from public spaces.
For him, Smirnov said, Lenin was "an even bigger villain than Hitler" because "Hitler treated his people much better."
The search for the victims of the “red terror”, begun in the Peter and Paul Fortress, St. Petersburg, during the summer of 2010 will now continue, reports Vodye Zhivoi (To the Living Waters), an organization under the auspices of Vice Governor Vasily Kichedzi of Leningrad Province.
Money for the work will be provided by the State Historical Museum of St. Petersburg.
DNA testing will also be financed in order to identify the discovered remains. The goal is to find and identify all the victims of the mass repression that took place in the former Russian capital during the years just after the Bolshevik revolution. The victims’ remains will then be given over to the earth with a solemn burial service.
In 2009, during construction work on Zayachy Island, the buried remains of prisoners executed by the Cheka from 1917–1921 were discovered. Among those who were innocently put to death in 1919 were Grand Dukes Pavel Alexandrovich, Dimitry Constantinovich, Nicholas and George Mikhailovich (three of whom were canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad in 1981). The excavation continued through the summer of 2010, and the remains of over 100 people were exhumed. Tsarist Army officer’s caps were found, along with boots, sailor’s ribbons, baptismal crosses, medals, miniature icons, and fragments of soldier’s blouses and jackets.
Now that financing has again been found, another 1700 square meters have yet to be excavated in addition to the 1000 completed in 2010.
© Pravoslavie.Ru. 19 August, 2012
Vladimir Lenin may be dead, but the question of what to do with his corpse is still very much alive.
That could change soon thanks to a new initiative by nationalist and Orthodox Christian groups to have the Soviet primogenitor evicted from his Red Square mausoleum by the end of the year.
"Nationalists, Cossacks and Orthodox groups have always supported his removal, but until now, we've never formed a united front to make it happen," said Dmitry Dyomushkin, head of the banned Slavic Union movement and a co-organizer of the aptly named "For Removing Lenin!" initiative.
The presence of Lenin's corpse violates the cultural, national and spiritual traditions of the Russian people and has led to unnecessary social tensions, Dyomushkin said by telephone Friday.
Public support appears to be building, albeit slowly, behind the idea of removing Lenin from the mausoleum, where he has been on display almost continuously since 1924.
Fifty-six percent of Russians support such an initiative — up from 50 percent in 1997 — according to a 2011 Levada Center poll.
In May, they received a boost when Vladimir Medinsky, a State Duma deputy and outspoken proponent of burying Lenin, was named culture minister.
Dyomushkin said people of all political persuasions are welcome to join the initiative, whose narrow aim is to build public support for Lenin's removal, including via rallies.
But it remains to be seen whether Dyomushkin, a controversial ultranationalist with fascist leanings, can attract mainstream and liberal supporters.
Sergei Mitrokhin, leader of the liberal Yabloko party, said that he has long supported Lenin's removal from Red Square, but that he won't work with Dyomushkin, a controversial ultranationalist, or appear on stage with him.
"I have nothing in common with Dyomushkin, but if he says 'two plus two equals four,' I'll agree," Mitrokhin said by telephone Friday, adding that Yabloko deserved credit for the idea to remove Lenin.
Representatives from 28 organizations, including the Union of Orthodox Banner-Bearers, the Monarchist Imperial League and the For Holy Rus movement, attended the second meeting of the organizing committee, which was held Thursday, according to a page on Dyomushkin's website.
But strangely, he couldn't provide any information on Andrei Chernyakov, the coordinator of the organizing committee's "liberal-democratic" wing, one of three ideological blocks spelled out in the statement on Dyomushkin's website.
Thirty-one percent of Russians, including many Communists, believe Lenin should stay put.
Sergei Obukhov, a State Duma Deputy from the Communist Party, denounced Dyomushkin's initiative as an attempt to curry favor with the presidential administration, citing the Slavic Union leader's application to join the presidential human rights council.
"I don't think Dyomushkin will score points in the Kremlin by cursing the memory of the founding father of the current Russian Federation, the great Russian political genius, the man who put social and national liberation on the agenda of the 20th century," he told Interfax last month.
And in a further reminder of how divided Russians still are on Lenin, the organizing committee has vowed not to take a position on what to do with the body once it's removed.
"Let Communist Party boss Gennady Zyuganov take the corpse to his dacha. Let them bury Lenin next to his relatives. Let them cremate him, as he wanted. Let them fire him out of a cannon. Just as long as they get him out of Red Square," Dyomushkin said.
He denied that the initiative, whose aims include a letter-writing campaign to cultural figures and politicians, including the heads of the four parties represented in the State Duma, was at all affiliated with the Kremlin.
Dyomushkin has already asked Prosecutor General Yury Chaika to check the legality of Lenin's presence on Red Square, where he has lain almost continuously since 1924.
Ultimately, the fate of Lenin's corpse seems to lie with President Vladimir Putin and the ruling United Russia party, neither of which appear to be in a rush.
Mummification and the public display of corpses aren't in Russia's national tradition, but now is not the time to bury Lenin, State Duma Deputy Vyacheslav Nikonov of United Russia said.
"I don't see any reason to start a bitter fight with the third of the population that sees Lenin and the mausoleum as a symbol. This isn't the biggest problem facing our society," he said by telephone Friday, adding that Lenin should be moved as soon as the issue no longer polarizes society.
Editor's Note: There are many people (myself included) who still believe that Lenin gave the order to murder Tsar Nicholas II and his family in 1918. Further, he is responsible for the deaths and suffering of millions of innocent people when he unleashed the Civil War and the Red Terror that followed. His hatred towards religion led to the endless violence against the Russian Orthodox Church. Lenin also signed the shameful Treaty of Bretsk-Litovsk with Germany on March 3, 1918. For these reasons, among many others, his body should be removed from the mausoleum where his memory is glorified on Red Square and interred in a cemetery. Paul Gilbert
© The Moscow Times. 6 August, 2012
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