Time to teach

  • 2005-05-11
When I recently visited Riga, I saw and heard a Red Army veteran on some TV-channel stating that Latvia was not occupied in connection with World War II.

The veteran said that the Red Army liberated Latvia. The man obviously doesn't know the difference between liberation and occupation. Holland was liberated at the end of WWII. After its liberation, Holland was not annexed to any other country. On the contrary, Holland was left to decide on its fate and future without interference from intruders. Had the Red Army returned to Russia and let the Latvians decide their own fate and future it had been a liberation. Instead the Red Army stayed in Latvia, Rusification took place, and an inferior economic culture destroyed the country. It's shameful to call that a liberation.

The bottom line is to teach and repeat over and over again the difference between liberation and occupation until people with a twisted mindset like that of the Red Army veteran understand what the two words are about. It seems, however, to be a difficult pedagogic task.

Bertil Falk

Sweden
 

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