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7 May, 2010 09:04

“We should face history as it is” – Professor of Politics

Victory Day is a very meaningful day in Russia, despite the attempts of some people to play down the importance of the victory, Dr Mikhail Stolyarov, from Russian Academy of Public Administration, told RT.

The professor says that politicizing the war, and even falsifications about the event, are not new, with some countries preferring to focus on the annexations of vast territories by the Soviet Union, and others altogether distorting the truth.

“I’m glad to know that all archives are open today and everybody can go online and know personally what happened on these days, for example the events at Katyn. We should simply face history as it is and not as somebody imagine it,” says Stolyarov.

Stolyarov does not agree with those saying that Russian should not have a costly military parade on this day.

“We don’t have so many national holidays that unite us. On Victory Day we can witness the real unification of different people, of different political parties, of people of different ages and of different nations,” notes Dr Stolyarov, in particular referring to foreign troops from the Allied countries marching on Red Square on this day.

Tomas Bertelman, Swedish Ambassador to Russia, will be among those present at the Grand Parade.

“It is a very moving occasion to see the veterans who are still among us taking part there, and who are in themselves a reminder to all of us of the suffering of the past times”, says Mr Bertelman.

The Ambassador stresses that the victory was the triumph of Allied Forces, but the role of the Soviet Union cannot be underestimated.

“The immense sacrifice and heroic resistance of the Soviet people contributed to victory in a decisive manner,” says the Swedish Ambassador.

Matti Anttonen, the ambassador of Finland to Russia, says that despite there being no special day of war commemoration in Finland, their veterans are still being respected, remembered and taken care of.

“I worked here [in Russia] in late ’80s-early ’90s, and of course also then, the Victory Day was celebrated,” Anttonen told RT. “But I think among the Soviet holidays, its role was not as high as it is now. I think it is very important that we take care of our veterans, we respect what they have done […]. In Finland, we have a very strong tradition of respecting our veterans. In the war, all those who died, they were brought back to their own home cities and own municipalities. In all cemeteries in Finland, we have special places where we can remember those people.”