Today the academic Robert Horvath has a column running in the Australian newspaper The Age which provides a rebuttal to former prime minister Paul Keating’s recent apologist article advising Australia to embrace Vladimir Putin because of Russia’s contributions in WWII. Horvath isn’t the only one to disagree with Keating on this one. (hat tip – La Russophobe). The Age:
IT WAS ironic that Paul Keating’s exhortation for us to extend a warm welcome to Vladimir Putin was published in The Age on September 5, the anniversary of one of the most tragic events in Russian history. It was on that day in 1918 that the Bolshevik regime issued its decree on the “Red Terror”, which authorised the secret police, the Cheka, to conduct extrajudicial executions and to incarcerate “class enemies” in concentration camps. Many decades later, prisoners in the Gulag would mark that day with ceremonies in memory of the victims of the “Red Terror”, which they understood to be the source of the violence that culminated in the mass slaughter of the 1930s. In honouring Putin, Keating would like us to remember the sacrifices of the Russian people during the Second World War, but he forgets that Putin is a product of a repressive apparatus that has also devastated the lives of tens of millions of Russians.