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Hitler and Putin: 1938 and 2022

by Paul Gavrilyuk | български | ქართული | ελληνικά | Română | Русский | Српски

Putin and Hitler

Hitler delivered his speech of September 12, 1938 to the German Reichstag a few weeks before the German tanks rolled over the German-Czech border to invade Czechoslovakia; Putin delivered his speech of February 21, 2022 to the Russian nation as he was giving orders for the Russian tanks to cross the Russian border with Eastern Ukraine.

As the main reason for invasion, Hitler gave the inflated grievances of the German minority of 3.5 million in Czechoslovakia; Putin often cites the imaginary oppression of the Russian speakers in Ukraine as the main reason for his invasion in 2014 and now in 2022. I am a Russian-speaking Ukrainian. I know from personal experience that Putin’s claim is a lie. Ukraine is a bilingual country, where Russian is nearly as common as Ukrainian. Russian speakers in Ukraine have broader civil rights than their counterparts in Putin’s Russia.  

As Hitler was complaining about the imaginary oppression of ethnic Germans in Czechoslovakia, he was five years into the persecution of the Jews in Germany. In fact, the first concentration camps appeared as early as 1933, and 400 decrees and regulations were published to restrict the public and private rights of the Jews. As Putin was spreading lies about the oppression of the Russian speakers in Ukraine, he began to brutally oppress and persecute the Crimean Tatars, immediately after the illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014. The persecution of Tatars is well-documented.  

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