Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Russian news: Timothy Snyder’s Historical Malpractice - Russia Insider

If we are to believe Timothy Snyder, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin should be placed in the same company with some twentieth century dictators, particularly Josef Stalin.

By profession Snyder is an historian, but what he writes in the New York Review of Books under the title “Putin’s New Nostalgia” is not the mind of scholar at work. Rather, Snyder again demonstrates that he is actually worse than most western journalists writing about Russia and its role the world stage.

Snyder should know better.

Putin said something to a group of historians that rattled Snyder’s cage: “The Soviet Union signed a non-aggression agreement with Germany. They say, ‘Oh, how bad.’ But what is so bad about it, if the Soviet Union did not want to fight? What is so bad?”

Indeed, Europe’s two great totalitarian regimes joined in a temporary alliance and divided Eastern Europe among themselves.

It is common to come across the description of the 1939 Molotov-Ribbentrop pact as “immoral,” but realistically it should have been expected. This is how realpolitik works. States are not moral institutions, but they do have geopolitical interests. After all, Washington and its allies secretly plot and fund the overthrow of governments,some democratically elected like in Ukraine, as a matter of course – very much like the Secret Protocols of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact!

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