Monument to Menachem Begin unveiled in Brest
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Surtr Kvlt
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RE: Monument to Menachem Begin unveiled in Brest
Better than a Reagan statue.

totalitARYAN
2015 May 01 12:29
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W. R.
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RE: Monument to Menachem Begin unveiled in Brest
Quote:Holocaust Discourse Raises Controversy in Belarus

26 July 2016



Memory of the Holocaust in independent Belarus

Traditionally marginalised and suppressed in the Soviet Union, Holocaust discourse had a chance to emerge in independent Belarus.

However, in the early 1990s Belarusians seemed too preoccupied with their own identity, economic problems, and nation and state building to begin discussing the Holocaust. Belarusian historians were busy trying to research and fill the numerous blank pages in Belarusian national history. Politicians were involved in political and economic problems accompanying Belarus’s transition to an independent state.

History textbooks for schools and universities provided little information about the Holocaust, and scholars had other. The authorities did not speak much about that episode of Belarusian history despite the revival of the Great Patriotic War cult in the official ideology following the election of Aliaksandr Lukashenka.

The politics of memory under Lukashenka

Lukashenka made the Great Patriotic War one of the key elements of the state ideology. Two of the main official holidays in Belarus commemorate the Great Patriotic War – Victory Day and Independence Day. The Independence Day celebrations changed from the day Belarus became independent from the USSR (27th of July) to the day Minsk was liberated (3rd of July) as a result of a referendum in 1996.

A subject called “The History of the Great Patriotic War” entered syllabuses at all universities in 2005 following Lukashenka’s order. The same year, the authorities opened "Stalin's Line," a historical-cultural complex “to become a symbol of a heroic struggle of the Soviet people against German-fascist invaders,” as the complex’s web-site states.

The Holocaust was practically excluded from the new politics of memory in Belarus. The massacre of hundreds of thousands of Jews on Belarusian territory by Nazis and their collaborators – often local – is muted during official speeches by the president on Victory and Independents Days.

This topic has still not entered mainstream public discourse, although some positive steps have been taken, including the erection of bronze statues at “The Pit” memorial in 2000. "The Pit" was initially founded in 1967 and was first visited by Lukashenka in 2008.

The erection of 45 new Holocaust memorials between 2005 and 2010 and the participation of Belarusian officials in the 65th and 70th anniversaries of the liquidation of the Minsk ghetto also mark an improvement in Holocaust memory politics in Belarus.

However, guring his presidency Lukashenka afforded himself being derogatory when speaking about Jews. One of the latest incidents was in April 2016 when the Belarusian president publicly asked the then Head of Hrodna region Siamion Shapira “to take all Jews under [Shapira’s] control”. This request stemmed from the fact that tut.by, an independent news portal owned by the Jewish Yury Ziser, published articles criticising a new law “on social parasites."

Lukashenka later explained that the year before Shapira had been asked to take control over Jews in Belarus, but Ziser's independent behaviour was not acceptable to the Belarusian president. Later Shapira said that this situation was not insulting to him although many other Belarusian Jews and Belarusians expressed their dissatisfaction with Lukashenka’s words.

The prospects of Holocaust discourse

Overall, the problem of silence surrounding the Holocaust in memory politics remains relevant in Belarus both on official and unofficial levels. Both the Belarusian state and the Belarusian public are very much distanced from that part of their history due to current historical discourse. Anti-Jewish clichés occasionally are articulated even on the official level since Soviet Union times.

Belarusians seem to be unready and unwilling to uncover the dark sides of their past. The fact that the Jewish population in Belarus decreases with each census means that it it unlikely that local Jews will force Belarusians to answer uncomfortable questions about the Holocaust.



Veranika Laputska

SOURCE

“The fact that the Jewish population in Belarus decreases with each census means that it it unlikely that local Jews will force Belarusians to answer uncomfortable questions about the Holocaust.”

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[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

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2017 Apr 27 16:41
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Temnozor
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Post: #13
RE: Monument to Menachem Begin unveiled in Brest
Quote:However, in the early 1990s Belarusians seemed too preoccupied with their own identity, economic problems, and nation and state building to begin discussing the Holocaust.

How dare these goys be more occupied with their own history?

Quote:despite the revival of the Great Patriotic War cult in the official ideology following the election of Aliaksandr Lukashenka.

There wasn't even a proper Victory Parade last year. There was one on Independence Day, though. The signaling appears to be different than what this author says.

Quote:Aliaksandr Lukashenka

The spelling of his name gets more weird each time I read a new one.

Quote:The Independence Day celebrations changed from the day Belarus became independent from the USSR (27th of July) to the day Minsk was liberated (3rd of July) as a result of a referendum in 1996.

That is interesting, I didn't know it.

Quote:The Holocaust was practically excluded from the new politics of memory in Belarus. The massacre of hundreds of thousands of Jews on Belarusian territory by Nazis and their collaborators – often local

Gee, I wonder why the local people would do such a thing ... I wonder how the curriculum these people have in mind would address this question.

"Whoever says that he "belongs to his time" is only saying that he agrees with the largest number of fools at that moment." - Nicolás Gómez Dávila

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2017 Apr 27 21:01
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W. R.
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RE: Monument to Menachem Begin unveiled in Brest
(2017 Apr 27 21:01)Temnozor Wrote:  There wasn't even a proper Victory Parade last year. There was one on Independence Day, though. The signaling appears to be different than what this author says.

Really? Maybe Luka realised that the previous version of the memory politics had played into the hands of the “russkiy mir” meme and decided to make some changes. It seems Luka can be flexible, which is good.

I posted the article not randomly, but in the connection with the two Holocaust speeches Trump delivered: one recently, and one in January. Reportedly the first one was okay, maybe because of /ourguy/ Bannon’s contribution, but the second one was more traditional with “never again” and so on. I then thought: gee, it happened 70 years ago, not in America, and not to Americans, and yet they are still so obsessed with the Holocaust, “never again” and Israel, unlike us here. Is that not weird?

I checked Luka's yesteryear's speeches on the Independence Day and on the 9th of May. Indeed, he didn't say “Jews” or “Holocaust” even once. It is hilarious to think that he lives Jean-Marie Le Pen's dream.

Our politics of memory is indeed too focused on the Soviet-German war. And the Holocaust simply does not fit in the narrative. Luka personally upgraded the old “one out of four residents of Belarus perished in that war” meme to “one out of three Belarusians perished in that war” (by randomly adding approximately 700.000 deaths to the body count!). But even during the Soviet times some historians officially admitted that “1 out of 4” included at least perished Jews and also POWs who died on the territory of the BSSR.

It may be that among civilians who perished during the war the number of ethnic Jews exceeds the number of ethnic Belarusians. But Belarusians today aren't supposed to realize that; they are supposed to believe that the Soviet-German war has been the main event in their history, not just another war that Belarusians lived through. That is why this regime will never ever popularize the Holocaust.

Also, this article and other similar articles I have read imply that Belarusians must “learn” something from the Holocaust. I guess they imply we must train ourself to tolerate any kind of foreigners, because “never again”. This is actually baloney. What the Holocaust teaches us is that if a minority has not been assimilated into the majority, in a dark hour of history they may be thrown to the wolves. And the Jews were not the only ones to prove that.

“Integration” of foreigners therefore is rubbish, it should be either complete assimilation or separation. “Multiculturalism” is rubbish as well.

[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

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2017 Apr 30 22:12
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