Do not support their hypocrisy!

It is immoral to support the hypocrisy of the Russian authorities

An appeal by former political prisoners
concerning today’s opening of a monument in Moscow

As former political prisoners and participants in the Democratic Movement in the Soviet Union, we consider the opening in Moscow of a monument to the “victims of political repression” to be untimely and hypocritical. A monument is a tribute to the past, yet acts of political repression in Russia not only continue – they are increasing.

In sponsoring the opening of the monument, the present Russian regime is pretending that acts of political repression are a thing of the distant past: the victims of such political repression, therefore, may be commemorated. We believe that today’s political prisoners in Russia are no less deserving of our help and attention than the respect and remembrance we owe to the victims of the Soviet regime.

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Putin unveils monument in Moscow

Amid controversy over his own methods of maintaining control over Russia, President Vladimir Putin has unveiled a memorial dedicated to victims of Soviet-era government repression and said the years of suffering at the hands of the state must never be forgotten.

Putin was speaking at the opening ceremony for the Wall Of Sorrow on 30 October 2017 as part of the official Day Of Remembrance For Victims Of Political Repression — an event first held in 1991, the year the Soviet Union ceased to exist. […] Some one hundred people — mainly elderly citizens, human rights activists, and city officials — attended the ceremony (reports Radio Liberty)

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The view from above (29 October 2017)

Two last shots of Sunday’s unofficial commemoration, “Restoring the Names”. Someone took these and many other photos from the viewing platform of the toy shop Detsky Mir across Lubyanka Square (see https://www.facebook.com/Memorial.International/?hc_ref=ARRrH5pwXB-ynweSTfLoh5aK8Fk6QbY_9HGh–pFEZODZ3krh5kAP4Sstx-Ym4P7-oY)

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Behind the hoardings stands the pre-Revolutionary Polytechnical Museum, where lectures were read and poetry recitals were given — by Vladimir Mayakovsky and Osip Mandelstam among others.

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“Restoring the Names”, 29 October 2017

Yesterday’s event in Moscow, from 10 am to 10 pm on Lubyanka Square (photos – Alexei Koreshkov)

Restoring the Names, 29 October 2017 (15).jpg

This year 5,286 people took part in “Restoring the Names” a commemorative event held annually on 29 October (in 2007, the event’s first year, they numbered only 263). People queued up to 4½ hours in order to read out one name or several.

During the minute’s silence the embassies of 28 countries placed flowers on the monument to the victims of totalitarianism.

“Until 1 pm we were still trying to keep track of how many people called for the release of Yury Dmitriev. Then we lost count, but it seems that every sixth speaker called for the head of Memorial in Karelia to be freed.”

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Alexei Vangengeim (1882-1937)

According to the weather forecast, it will be warm and rainy today in Moscow, 4-5 degrees Centigrade. “So wrap up well, put on boots and a raincoat, and take an umbrella with you,” suggests Memorial to the hundreds of people intending to take part in the “Restoring the Names” ceremony on Moscow’s Lubyanka Square.

In January 1934 the head and founder of the Soviet Meteorological Service, ALEXEI WANGENHEIM (1881-1937), was arrested and charged with “counter-revolutionary sabotage” in the organisation he had created. He spent the last three years of his life on Solovki before being shot, at this time of year, with the rest of the “missing” Solovki transport.

Alexei Wangenheim, 1882-1937

Wife and husband; daughter and mother; prison photos

The last resting place of Wangenheim (Vangengeim) and his comrades in misfortune was not established until almost sixty years later, when Yury Dmitriev, Irina Flige and Venyamin Joffe found the killing fields of Sandarmokh, early in July 1997.

 

“Restoring the Names”, 2017

“From 10 am to 10 pm on Sunday, 29 October, we shall be reading out the names of the victims of political repression here in Moscow,” announces an item on the Restoring the Names page on Facebook. “The Memorial Society has organised this event for ten years, ever since 2007. One after another, people will get up and read from the list. Yet thus far we have barely read half of the names of  the 40,000 people executed in and around Moscow during the pre-war period.”

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Remember Sandarmokh & the Imprisoned Historian of the Terror

“It is exactly 80 years since the killing by quota began of Ukrainian, Russian and other prisoners from the notorious Solovki Labour Camp,” writes HALYA COYNASH for the website of the Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group. “From 27 October to 4 November 1937, 1,111 prisoners were executed by the NKVD, including 289 Ukrainian writers, playwrights, scientists and other members of the intelligentsia.” Their bodies, like those of nearly eight thousand other victims shot in the vicinity, were tossed into burial pits at Sandarmokh in Karelia (Russia) and remained lost until 1997.

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