History Redefined as Propaganda

By | November 13, 2016

Vladimir Medinsky, Russian Minister of Culture and “Doctor” of Sciences, continues to insist on his understanding of history as propaganda instead of science. On November 3, 2016, he said on Russian TV: “My opponents do not like my concept. I say that historical events and figures should be assessed from the point of view of the national interests of Russia. They argue that this is wrong. And I say, then from the standpoint of interests of what other country?”

Olga Vasilieva, Minister of Education and a historian, has a similar opinion that in history “it is not possible without mythologizing . . .You cannot do anything without the heroic image of historical characters. Whether you are a small person, whether you’re an adult, you should have an ideal to pursue,” she said in an interview on November 7, 2016. However, she claimed that she is not a Stalinist: “What is my attitude to Stalin, the man whose tyranny is obvious? The man, on whose conscience (and not only on his conscience) are the victims of political repression?” But, at the same time, “we have to accept that the person was a statesman.” And more: “I usually call him a great politician with a big-big ‘minus.’” The merit of Stalin, according to the minister, is that he “restored continuity with the pre-revolutionary history.”

In the meantime, on October 28, due to public protests, the plaque in the memory of the NKVD creators of the Gulag labor camp currently known as labor camp IK no. 31 for women in the city of Mikun (Komy Autonomous Republic) was dismantled. Ernest Mezak, jurist of Moscow human rights “Public Verdict” Foundation, commented: “I think that on October 30 of each year at this monument it is necessary to read the names of prisoners of the Komi-Zyryansk camps of the Gulag.”

Author: Vadim Birstein

Dr. Vadim J. Birstein is a historian and geneticist. He is the author of over 300 scientific papers and books and has written two scholarly historical works, "The Perversion of Knowledge: The True Story of Soviet Science" and "SMERSH, Stalin's Secret Weapon: Soviet Military Counterintelligence in WWII". He received the inaugural "St. Ermin's Intelligence Book Award" in 2012 for SMERSH.

2 thoughts on “History Redefined as Propaganda

  1. Pingback: A New State ideology? | Dr. Vadim Birstein

  2. Pingback: Uncertainty with Vladimir Medinsky’s Dissertation Continues | Dr. Vadim Birstein

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