“When Putin came to the top, to construct his regime of personal power, he could not not to rely on the war myth. The myth of a tough but fair leader relied on the myth of the war, and, as Putin’s regime grew, both grew together. Russia is Putin. Russia is the Victory of 1945. From these two equations we obtain a new equation: Putin now is the Victory of 1945.
“The May 9 parade in Moscow is not a parade to the memory of victims and heroes of the war, this is a parade of loyalty to Putin and his government. St. George’s black and orange ribbon, officially symbolizing that memory has now become a sign of the loyalty also. With this ribbon, pro-Russian separatists are fighting in Ukraine. It is important to them to feel as they were the heirs of the soldiers of the Second World War, opposing not the modern Ukraine, but the evil of 1941-45 that their grandparents fought against. The Western version of the war, whether it is the Holocaust or the division of Europe, or even Turing’s calculations that cracked “Enigma” code – all of these annoy modern Russian society, Russian society which has already agreed to include into the number of their enemies from 1945 all those considered to be enemies of the current Russian state including Ukraine, Georgia, and America. Vladimir Putin’s historical experiment has destroyed the memory, it replaced it with a trivial political design. This design will be short-lived. It will end with the end of Vladimir Putin’s power, and then Russian society will have to re-formulate its attitude to World War II again.”