Vladimir Putin on 80th Anniversary of Russia's Great Patriotic War
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org - Home - Stephen Lendman)
On June 22, 1941, Nazi Germany launched Operation Barbarossa against Soviet Russia.
Involving up to four million combat and support troops, it was perhaps the largest ever invasion force by an aggressor nation against another.
Hitler's megalomaniacal rage to conquer ideological rival Russia, acquire lebensraum, gain control over its resources and enslave its people sealed his fate and Nazi Germany's.
On the 80th anniversary of Operation Barbarossa, German newspaper Die Zeit published Putin's op-ed to warn about what he called "significantly…degraded…European security" because of permanent war footing readiness on the continent.
It risks "the scourge of war (with possible use of super-weapons) which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind," according to the UN Charter's preamble.
On the 80th anniversary of June 22, 1941, Putin said the following:
"(H)aving conquered almost all of Europe…the Nazis…attacked the USSR."
Its Great Patriotic War was "the bloodiest in the history of our country."
"Tens of millions of people died, and (Russia's) economic potential and cultural heritage were severely damaged."
Putin expressed gratitude to Red Army heroes and "home front workers."
They courageously "defended the independence and dignity of the Motherland, but also saved Europe and the world from (Nazi) enslavement."
Without Soviet Russia's indispensable contribution against the scourge of Nazi tyranny, the war's outcome might been vastly different.
The Red Army's lead role in defeating Nazi Germany proved decisive.
Occupied France was out of the war when Hitler began it by invading Poland in September 1939.
The US and Britain were junior partners to Soviet Russia's war effort — at the cost of about 27 million lost lives, immense suffering of its people, and devastation to its cities and towns.
On the Great Patriotic War's 75th anniversary, Russia's Foreign Ministry slammed reinvented US history that attributed "victory over Hitler's Germany…exclusively to America and Great Britain," adding:
"American officials did not have the courage and desire to pay at least a half-word tribute to the undeniable role and enormous disproportionate sacrifices that the Red Army and the Soviet people suffered then for the sake of all humanity."
Putin stressed that "whoever…tr(ies) to rewrite the pages of the past now, the truth is that the Soviet soldier came to the land of Germany not to take revenge on the Germans, but with the noble, great mission of a liberator," adding:
"The memory of the heroes who fought against Nazism is sacred to us."
"We remember with gratitude the allies in the anti-Hitler coalition, the members of the Resistance, the German anti-fascists who brought the common Victory closer."
"Having survived the horrors of the world war, the peoples of Europe were still able to overcome alienation and restore mutual trust and respect, embarked on a course of integration in order to draw the final line under the European tragedies of the first half of the last century."
"I want to especially emphasize that the historical reconciliation of our people and the Germans who lived both in the east and in the west of the modern united Germany played a colossal role in the formation of such a Europe."
Post-WW II, Germany and Soviet Russia cooperated economically, including by what Putin called a 1970 "deal of the century" to provide Germany and Europe with "longterm supplies of natural gas."
It "laid the foundation for constructive interdependence, which became the beginning of many subsequent ambitious projects, including the construction of the Nord Stream gas pipeline" — its first line completed in 2011.
When the Cold War ended after Soviet Russia's dissolution in December 1991, Moscow hoped for what Putin called "a common victory for Europe."
It wasn't to be because of US hegemonic aims, Putin explaining:
"(A) different approach prevailed…based on the expansion of" NATO east.
Instead of mutual cooperation throughout Europe, there was "rapid growth of mutual distrust" for invented reasons, clearly no legitimate ones.
Yet "a precedent (was) created" not easily overcome.
Multiple "waves of NATO expansion…buried hopes for a continent without dividing lines."
"(M)any countries were faced with an artificial choice - to be either with the collective West or with Russia. In fact, it was an ultimatum."
"The consequences of such an aggressive policy can be seen in" the Obama/Biden's 2014 coup d'etat against democratic Ukraine — transforming the country into a fascist police state bordering Russia.
From Soviet Russia's dissolution 30 years ago to the present day, "the entire system of European security has seriously degraded," Putin stressed, adding:
"Tensions are growing, and the risks of a new arms race are becoming real."
"We are missing out on the enormous opportunities that cooperation gives us, all the more so it is so important now, when we are all faced with common challenges."
What conclusions can be drawn? What lessons can be learned, Putin asked?
"(T)he entire post-war history of Greater Europe confirms that the prosperity and security of our common continent is possible only through the joint efforts of all countries, including Russia."
"Because Russia is one of the largest European states."
"And we feel our inseparable cultural" ties to the continent.
Russia is a leading world advocate of peace, stability, cooperative relations with other nations, confrontation with none, and compliance with international law.
Hegemon USA and its imperial partners follow other standards in pursuing interests at the expense of invented enemies like Russia.
It's why the threat of unthinkable global war 3.0 remains an ominous possibility.
If occurs, it'll be made in the USA in pursuit of its drive for hegemony — not by Russia or any of its other invented enemies that don't exist.
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"Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity"