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21 June 2021, 16:18

Opinion: Timing of West's sanctions against Belarus is deeply symbolic and tragic

Nikolai Shchekin
Nikolai Shchekin

MINSK, 11 June (BelTA) - It is deeply symbolic and tragic that it is in these days that the collective West is imposing large-scale sanctions against Belarus, BelTA learned from Nikolai Shchekin, Candidate of Philosophy, Head of the Sociology of Public Administration Department at the Sociology Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus.

“Historical memory is the most valuable thing that remains in the history of society and mankind. Today, it is with sadnesses and heavy heart that we have been watching some absurdity and chaotic nature of what is happening. Actions, words, ideas, people are being forgotten. It is difficult to wrap you head around their attempts to denigrate the great heroic pages of our people and desecrate our cherished memory,” the analyst said. “Everyone will agree with me that 22 June 1941 is the most tragic day in our history. Perhaps no date highlights the historical tragic fate of the Belarusian people like this one. The entire millennial history pales before the horrific history of the Great Patriotic War. It affected the lives of everyone, left a scar on the heart and soul of millions of Belarusians and other Soviet peoples, their descendants."

According to Nikolai Shchekin, 22 June1941 is a festering wound, a unremitting pain, a cry of the soul and a constant appeal to justice. “80 years have passed, but the graves of millions of Red Army soldiers, monuments reminding of the atrocities of the Nazis in concentration camps, obelisks that perpetuate the heroic feat of the Belarusian people are a reminder to all of us, now living, about the criminal efforts of the collective West to ‘democratize' Belarus," Nikolai Shchekin believes. “The recent attempts by the collective West to rewrite the tragic, most cherished and at the same time sad pages of our history must be regarded as a declaration of war: a war on the historical truth and the memory, our independence. Belarus and the entire Belarusian people found themselves in the line of lies, fakes, information war, state terrorism. They are trying to turn us into a memoryless banana tribe and take away the main value - the Belarusian soul and cultural code, as the only factor cementing the Belarusian people and statehood. It is difficult to overestimate the contribution of the Belarusian people to the victory in the Great Patriotic War, its spiritual uplift, genuine heroism and inexhaustible thirst for life. In the Year of People's Unity, the memory of the tragic date is a reminder to all that we should always appreciate the unity of people and the country."

Nikolai Shchekin noted that Belarus was one of the first among the former Soviet Union state to begin to defend the value of the Great Victory and one of the few countries in the world that did not allow Nazism to rear its head on its territory and put a reliable barrier to the attempts to rewrite history. Unfortunately, it is deeply symbolic and tragic that it is in these days that the collective West is imposing large-scale sanctions against Belarus. It is a war of sorts through people's symbols. As a scholar I know that a war of symbols has always been a harbinger of real military actions. In this regard, the claims of the collective West, especially Germany and Poland, to the high moral ground look inherently criminal. Demolition of monuments to the Red Army in Western countries (Poland, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Romania, Ukraine, Latvia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Slovakia) defies reasonable explanation. Falsification of history is a crime against descendants," Nikolai Shchekin said.

In his opinion, the Brest Fortress, Khatyn, Krasny Bereg, Ozarichi, Trostenets are the silent symbols of the bloody war. “The investigation into criminal cases of the genocide against the Belarusian population during the Great Patriotic War and in the postwar period, launched by the General Prosecutor's Office, has become a vivid example to all countries and peoples how not to leave Nazi crimes unpunished and how to restore historical justice. It is everyone's duty to bow low to all those who died under the bombardment of the Luftwaffe, who perished in the concentration camps and in villages burnt to the ground, who were brutally tortured in the Gestapo, who were subjected to savage medical and biological experiments and who were buried alive and put to death in the torture chambers. Our generation has no right to forget the atrocities of Hitler's Germany and the fascist democracy of the collective West. We cannot permit a repeat of the genocide against Belarus. Holding a nationwide minute of silence will be an immutable and vital tradition, immortalizing the souls and hearts of the victims,” Nikolai Shchekin noted.

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