Smashing Lenin Won’t Save Ukrainetags: Soviet Union, Ukraine, Vladimir Lenin
LOS ANGELES — As Ukraine’s president fled Kiev and protesters roamed his mansion and took over the capital, old statues of Vladimir Lenin were toppled and dragged through the streets in several Ukrainian cities.
The vandalism and destruction of Lenin statues across Ukraine is only the latest attack on symbols of the old Soviet state and its Eastern European satellites.
As the Soviet Union crumbled in the late 1980s and early 1990s, images of Lenin were defaced and graffiti artists mocked the Communist Party. In East Germany, most of the scorn was saved for the party leader and head-of-state Erich Honecker. His portraits were vandalized and altered, representing widespread anger and charges that he was a war criminal resulting from the shooting deaths at the Berlin Wall. Mr. Honecker avoided trial because of deteriorating health and was allowed to be exiled in Chile.
The East German flag, with the central state seal cut out of the middle, was waved in opposition rallies, indicating a desire to return to some notion of unified German statehood, suggested by the historic black, red and yellow stripes of Weimar. And perhaps the most striking example was a bust of Lenin, once white, that was painted in the midst of the October uprising in Leipzig, using Western-made fluorescent pink and green paint....
comments powered by Disqus
- 150 years later, schools are still a battlefield for interpreting Civil War
- Where are America's memorials to pain of slavery, black resistance?
- Richmond split over Confederate history
- The World's Jewish Population Is Nearing Pre-Holocaust Levels
- Bernie Sanders’s Revolutionary Roots Were Nurtured in ’60s Vermont
- Did a historian who said he’s a victim of McCarthyism get the story wrong?
- Stephanie Coontz’s work on the history of marriage cited by the Supreme Court.
- NYT History Book Reviews: Who Got Noticed this Week?
- David Hackett Fischer wins $100,000 prize for lifetime achievement in military writing