Wednesday, May 13

Estonia's Other Statue

Everyone knows about the Soviet 'Bronze Soldier' memorial that was moved in Tallinn a while back. This was a memorial erected in Estonia's Capital by the Soviet Union to remember the Soviet soldiers who died during fighting to take the Estonian State from the Nazis (for incorporation into Stalin's Soviet Union).

Of course, idiotic Russians claim that the memorial is to honor those who 'liberated' Estonia from the Nazis. One could say that the Soviet Union did do that. The only problem was that the Soviets then failed to give the Estonians their country back.

However, you have probably never heard about this other memorial located in Tallinn, which also happened to be unceremoniously removed. This would be:

The Memorial for Teachers and Students Perished
during the War of Independence

A sculpture commemorating the teachers and students who gave their lives in the War of Independence. This was one of the first monuments that the Soviets removed after occupying Estonia in 1940. Students of Tallinn kept honoring it by laying flowers where it had stood. Many of these students were arrested and never seen again. All monuments honoring the heroes of the War of Independence were either destroyed or removed by the Soviets. This particular one was returned to its place of honor in a slightly damaged condition after the end of the first Soviet occupation. It was again removed immediately after the Soviet invasion in 1944. - ESTONIA, A Nation Unconquered, by Aarand Roos
The statue in the photo is not the original one. That one was destroyed by the Soviets. This one was rebuilt in the 1990's after they finally managed to take back their freedom from Soviet domination.

All this happened well after the 1920 Peace Treaty signed between Russia and Estonia, which included the following statement:

Article II

In consequence of the right of all peoples to self-determination, to the point of seceding completely from the State of which they form part, a right proclaimed by the Socialist and Federal Russian Republic of the Soviets, Russia unreservedly recognises the independence and sovereignty of the State of Estonia, and renounces voluntarily and for ever all sovereign rights possessed by Russia over the Estonian people and territory whether these rights be based on the juridical position that formerly existed in public law, or in the international treaties which, in the sense here indicated, lose their validity in future. - Treaty of Tartu

The Estonians would be good to demand that Russia re-confirm their intent to honor this Treaty, for whatever good it will do. With that, this whole issue is another reminder that Russia has yet to go through an accounting of the Crimes of the Soviet Union like Nazi Germany went through.

Russian Actions against Estonia a Reminder that the Crimes of Communism Still Need to be Investigated

Europe's Lingering Scar of Communism

They were Soviets, right? - CDR Salamander which has the following joke:
Reminds me of the one Estonian joke I know. In the 1980s DC you head into a bar and sit next to some drunk old man with a funny accent. You strike up a conversation, note his accent, and ask him where he is from. He stands up straight and says;
I am from Estonia; the world's most powerful nation!
Funny, you think to yourself - never heard of it. He continues;
Our government is in North America, our land is in Europe and most of our population is in Siberia!


Remembering the Soviet Union v.1
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