At the time when Maria Zakharova issued her statement, in which she accused Stalin of being worse than Hitler to Russia, Sergey Lavrov issued in his name a longer article on the history of the Russian statehood (http://www.globalaffairs.ru/global-processes/Istoricheskaya-perspektiva-vneshnei-politiki-Rossii-18017). The article is entitled "Thoughts on the New Stage of International Development," (original: "Размышления на новом этапе международного развития").
Here are the highlights:
Here are the highlights:
1. Lavrov claims that the policy of submission to the Golden Horde by the Russian rulers (as a result of military defeats) was done in order to preserve Christian faith and "the right to decide their fate." The submission was, according to Lavrov, a "wise and forward-looking policy," and "is in our genes."
"Let us recall in this connection the policy pursued by Grand Prince Alexander Nevsky, who opted to temporarily submit to Golden Horde rulers, who were tolerant of Christianity, in order to uphold the Russians’ right to have a faith of their own and to decide their fate, despite the European West’s attempts to put Russian lands under full control and to deprive Russians of their identity. I am confident that this wise and forward-looking policy is in our genes."
2. Lavrov calls the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 "without a doubt ... a terrible tragedy for our nation."
3. Lavrov's "balancing act" on the "evils" of the Soviet Union looks like this: "The Soviet Union, for all its evils, never aimed to destroy entire nations."
4. According to Lavrov (what a lie!), the demolition of the Soviet Union was an act of the will of the people assisted by bad luck: "There is no substance behind the popular belief that the Soviet Union’s dissolution signified Western victory in the Cold War. It was the result of our people’s will for change plus an unlucky chain of events." As you can see, he also claims that the demise of the Soviet Union and its defeat in the Cold War was not a Western victory.
5. Lavrov concludes by approvingly quoting Ivaan Ilyin who praised--after World War II--Nazism and criticized it for its failure to defeat the Soviet Union. Here Lavrov approves of Ilyin's claim that, for Russia as a great power, the size of its territory and the number of its people is not important: "Speaking about Russia's role in the world as a great power, Russian philosopher Ivan Ilyin said that the greatness of a country is not determined by the size of its territory or the number of its inhabitants, but by the capacity of its people and its government to take on the burden of great world problems and to deal with these problems in a creative manner."