Olga Leonova: history as a victim of ignorance
We believe that ignorance and savagery are something distant: the bearded Talibs, who destroy the monuments of Buddha, African tribes, who are afraid of being photographed, the dark middle ages with tortures of the heretics or, in the worst case, the camp fires from the books in the pre-war Germany. No. Barbarism and savagery turn out to be near. The world has seen the episode about the contemporary people, who strive for Europe, throwing down a lump of stone from the pedestal and rejoicing over the prostrate giant, shaking with imaginary spears and hooting.
Of course, twenty Lenins made of stone are better than one alive communist. I think, that it is a good thing that the participants of Euromaidan blew off a steam in such a way, and not by pogroms of the shops and torturing Jews. The crowd is the crowd. But how symbolic is its deed.
The granite monument to Lenin, of course, is not in any lists of UNESCO, as some people try to assure. But it is, first of all, the property of the community. And only the community has the right to dispose its destiny via the deputy corps at the sessions of Kiev City Council, but not by the people, who arrived from other cities and villages.
A small and cozy Lenin on Shevchenko Boulevard become a victim of ignorance, and fell from the hands of the same crowds, which, in their time, put Lenin on a pedestal, overthrowing other monuments. It is interesting that the pedestal, as some people claim, before the revolution belonged to the monument of the czar Alexander the Second. The circle has been closed.
Having stood at this location for more than 50 years, Lenin was pulled down with cables. The head of the sculpture broke off because of the stroke. And after that people began to break the overthrown monument to pieces with sledge-hammers. It means that they came for this action fully equipped, and, therefore, deliberately. It was not a spontaneous riot of the crowd as no one normally has a sledge-hammer with him or her while walking around Kiev.
The events of December 8 are not the only attempt to assassinate the monument. In summer 2009 the group of nationalists broke off the hand and nose of Lenin. Five nationalists were detained and sentenced for hooliganism. The leader was sentenced to 3 years of imprisonment and the rest were sentenced to 2 years of custodial restraint. All of them, I beg pardon for a pun, belonged to the political party Svoboda (the literary translation — Freedom).
The representatives of Svoboda took the blame this time as well. They announced proudly that they broke the monument with the whole political party! They do not consider it to be dishonorable to change one monument to another. The same as the Bolsheviks, and the people, still Soviet in their core, of 1991, who didn’t consider it wrong to throw down the monument to Dzerzhinsky in Lubyanka. They also built a new world, destroying the existing one to the basement.
To tell the truth, the leader of Svoboda Oleg Tyagnubok, justifying himself, said that he hadn’t ordered to demolish Lenin, it was just a self-willed act, which could be justified by the dislike of the communist regime.
But as for me, it is just barbarism and absence of knowledge of our history, because it was Lenin, who established Ukraine with its capital in Kiev de jure by a decree. On March 10, 1919 Ekaterinoslavskaya, Kievskaya, Poltavskaya, Kharkovskaya, Khersonskaya and Chernigovskaya provinces became the constituent parts of Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. In some time several more territories were joined to Ukraine: Odessa region, the Crimea, as well as Podkarpatskaya Rus, North Bukovuna, and, what is more important, the Western Ukraine, which was taken out from the composition of Poland. This is the same as if the monument of Ermak were pulled down in Siberia: stupid, pointless and wild.
It was also wild that people took the broken pieces of granite as souvenirs. It is true; you can see the level of thinking! In a couple of days these pieces were sold on the Internet. Dear gentlemen, if Lenin bothered you so much, why did you take his parts as souvenirs? This is the same as to drink of the scull of your enemy, isn’t it?
And these people want to join the civilization, make seven-league steps to Europe, in order to join the European culture and, respectively, to contribute their culture to Europe.
But, I think, they must first clean their territory from disagreeable monuments, in order, so to say, to go to Europe with a clean conscience. And it is easy to find compromising evidence for each monument.
«If it continues in such a way, we will soon witness the destruction of the monuments of the Marxist Lesya Ukrainka, the socialist Ivan Franco, the fighter for the rights of women Panas Mirniy, the founder of the free academy of the proletarian poets Khvilevuy and other figures,» those who became unintentional witnesses of the hooliganism nervously joke in Facebook.
Herewith, the civilized Europe stood still as it saw the true faces of those, who, hoping to overcome Schengen, would soon come to Europe to raise its agriculture and look after the Spanish pensioners.
Just for reference: the memorial boards about the stay of Lenin can be found in different cities in Finland, the monuments to Lenin are in Helsinki, Capri, Copenhagen, Belfast and Potsdam. They do not bother anyone there, but only serve the educational purpose: to inform that such person existed and what he was famous for, let it be sad fame, but people learn from the mistakes.
But this is civilized Europe, I will repeat myself one more time. And the Head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland Radoslav Sikorski was glad with the act of the Ukrainian nationalists. Apparently, he liked the scene when a man wearing the clothing of a priest was jumping on the stone body of a communist.
«One may say that it is not diplomatic, but I can say that Lenin was one of the bloodiest tyrants of the twentieth century. And personally I am happy that another European capital does not have the monument to Lenin,» Sikorski said.
Probably, Sikorski was secretly happy only about the thing since the Poles, who massively leave for Europe in search of work, have not a very good reputation. They say that they are wild. Now, there are people, who are worse than the Poles. That is, there was Joseph, who was lagging behind the class. And then there appeared Bogdan, who was left for the second year. Joseph is happy because now he is not the last, but somewhere in the middle.
Earlier the people from the East were part of Europe more than once. The Roman Empire remembers them, as well as the exhibits of the world museums, which were deprived of their heads, a hand, and noses. And it is funny that the Romans called barbarians not only the Gothic tribes but Slavic tribes as well.