Don’t Rewrite WWII History, Says, Medvedev

I have taught thousands of American social studies teachers during the course of my life, and am invariably shocked by the lack of knowledge they possess–and obviously teach–concerning WWII. Most have an incredulous look on their faces when I tell them that throughout WWII, the Russian army confronted 70% of the German army, and that on D-Day, Americans were a minority of those who landed. President Medvedev recently sharply criticized attempts to rewrite the history of the Great Patriotic War. He particularly cited some of Russia’s neighboring countries who denigrate the role of the Russian people and pretend the war was between two totalitarian nations. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and others should open a history book and learn WWII involved an alliance between the Soviet Union, Great Britain and the United States.

It is shocking that men who fought in the Waffen SS and helped to kill six million Jews are now glorified while the Red Army which liberated the death camps is accused of being the criminals. Of course, Joseph Stalin was a dictator, of course, he brutalized even his own people, but no one can take away the incredible performance of the Red Army in defeating the worst criminals and murderers of the 20th century–Nazi Germany.

As President Medvedev commented: “We see distortions of the truth about the war, about the decisive contribution by the Red Army to the defeat of Nazism and the liberation of Europe.” Perhaps, the Lithuanians, Poles, Estonians and Latvians can tell the people of Holland, Belgium, France, Yugoslavia, and Greece of the wonderful time they had under the rule of the Nazis. Or, how about the hundreds of thousands of British civilians killed in Nazi bombing raids!

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  • Richard McLaughlin

    when a high school teacher asked me who was the greatest general of WWII I rattled off a number of Russian names – just for the fact that they drew the full brunt of the war. Tatically, OK they were not the greatest, but the Russians won the war.
    I’m a former US Marine from the 80’s and we spoke of the Russians as dangerous simply because they could feild a large army and have showed in the past that they did not care about the amount of casualities but only of winning. We would have beaten them is a war, but the cost would have been huge. We would have won only because we have the infrastructure to keep supplies running and the Russians didn’t.

  • Fred Stopsky

    I regret but your comments are not historically correct;
    1. Russia by the end of the war had the best tanks.
    2. Russian artillery matched anything in the British and American armies.
    3. Russian planes matched anything in the German or British and American airforces.
    4. A war with Russia would have been a logistical nightmare. The roads in eastern Europe were terrible and, actually, both the German and Russian armies also relied on horses.
    5. The greatest tank battle of WWII was at Kursk and involved Russian and German tanks. Sorry, but your comments are like those of most young Americans.