On Behalf of the Compilers «Restoration of Truth»


          Igor Kuznetsov,
          Yakov Basin


The most tragic result of all the reforms undertaken by Bolsheviks after 1917 was a Soviet man, all our lumpenized society, infected by the poison of violence. Now the question is not about the increase of criminality, but the question is that the overwhelming majority of people in our country don’t imagine themselves the other way to solve social problems, as by the way of violence.

The Revolution, the violent civil war, the future development of the Soviet society, permanent search of internal enemy is being held through the whole history of the Soviet society, which was guilty of misfortunes and failures of the country, led to the fact, that the word «To shoot !» is pronounced by people without a moment’s hesitation, it doesn’t plunge them into despair. This word is pronounced exactly at that moment, when the question is about struggle against some, according to their idea, negative phenomena. And that word is pronounced by the people who are at different steps of social scale of rank, and people with different levels of well-education - from ordinary worker to a doctor of sciences.

Today, we have learnt a lot about the crimes of the Stalin times, but that tragic experience and our present life are located as if in different planes. The passed historical way has for the moment taught the society to nothing. It seems in that country, which is worn out, tired of violence, intolerance, the satiety should have come, after which a new violence becomes impossible. But, unfortunately, everything is repeated, and at the different level. One turn of the history - and today we can see people of other nationalities as new «people’s enemies» (for example, Jews or Caucasians), of other public and religious organizations (for example, Masons or adherent of a different faith), or other political parties and ideological movements (for example, democrats or former functionaries of the Communist Party). They exactly are guilty, in the public consciousness, of all the misfortunes of the society.

The present democrats with all the generosity of their targets and aspirations, in their majority, remain the Leninists, one bone and one flesh of people brought up on violence. That’s why, speaking furiously against Lenin, they don’t suggest any other methods to solve our today’s problems, besides those which were guided by Bolsheviks, calling to overthrow the existing government.

And now we are coming closer to the most complicated problem for our society - the problem of the universal penitence. The society will not be able to go over to its new condition without it - society without violence. The public consciousness still doesn’t apprehend a thought that not some occupants are guilty of all the troubles, which occurred with our country in the XX century, administering unlawful actions at strange lands, but we are, ourselves. And though that is a fault of different degree of weight (the first degree is the country leaders, the second degree is active executors, the third degree is the fault of the whole nation which accepted the new regime and participates in its actions), but it should be atoned for by the society.

The easiest thing is to put the blame for the October Revolution on Lenin and Bolsheviks, and so to close the whole problem of the historical guilt of that generation before the country. But historical reality is more complicated then simple patterns, and historians have been struggling against this problem for a long time: why did Russia in 1917 not only accept Bolshevism, declaring violence as one of the main means to solve social problems, but it also became capable to realize this violence actively?


It is even more easier to put the responsibility for the creation of totalitarian system of power, for mass repressions, for collectivization and starvation (golodomor), for senseless millions of victims during the times of the last war, for sabre-rattling and the post-war arms race, for the state racism, etc. only upon Stalin, his successors and their encirclement. Where was the Party under the leadership of which all these unlawful actions and savageries were managed in all the corners of the country? Why those, who in any other conditions might have given their lives for the welfare of their people, without hesitating a single minute, became participators in all these crimes?

That is why it is so difficult to differentiate the right ones and the guilty ones, the butchers and the victims in the history of the XX century.

Today the view at our history has gained more aspects in comparison with the period of Khrustchev’s thaw, when the Party and the state members were considered only as victims of Stalin’s cult of personality. It is quite clear today that such approach is far away from the reality, but it is none the better for it.

The modern reader can ask: «We are ordinary people, the majority of us was born after all these events and what has become history, why should we suffer? What are we guilty of ? Why should we know all these and remember it? Why should we carry this heavy burden of historical responsibility? We are representatives of new generation. We don’t want to feel our degeneration, to become aware of our inferiority civil complex.»

One can’t just disregard this matter, as there is no such category in the mentality of the association of nations as universal penitence. It is not easy to live with the constant feeling of fault for the crimes of former generations. Such historical memory is being brought up for centuries.

Half a century has passed since the day when one of the most dreary and cruel tyrants in the history of mankind died. It happened in the year of 1953, in the distant past, and even with the best will in the world, we can’t blame Stalin for the breakdown of our economy, social sphere, in the collapse of our morality and culture.

The most difficult thing for today is to accept that not only the system, each of us is responsible for that condition of the society, which we have arrived to. Now, it seems to all of us that we are not guilty of, that even before the year 1985 we knew everything and understood everything. This is also self-delusion. Let’s remember ourselves some years before. Did many of us manage to keep their human dignity at this time, even at the time when we knew and understood everything? Admission of this will be the penitence.

The tragedy of our people is contained in that terror and fear, impetuous drop of man’ life value, which on the one hand started in 1917, and on the other hand - everyday break between word and deed, unrestrained glorification and lie, changed the man’s nature, made him inert and lacking responsibility for what is going on in the country, lacking the right on that responsibility and being used to live outside that responsibility, and he even managed to turn the worst things out of the modern hardships into some type of the comfort. As a result, all these have made a Soviet man not only a victim, a participator of the crimes happening in the country. The quantity of those, who really resisted the existing regime and managed to keep their dignity in the utmost difficult conditions, was not too big. Even today they remain our moral leading lights.


Only in everyone’s admission of his fault and in penitence of his participation in lie, we can see the salvation of the society and the beginning of his way towards the consolidation. And this time we shouldn’t build any illusions. This way will be long and difficult. But the real creation is possible only at that way, the revival of the best things, which the Belarussian society has, and the best features of our nation.

In the meantime :the country cannot dig up out the exclusive circle of problems, in which it found itself in 1917. One can hear again the voices that somebody should be «shot», that it’s time «to take up arms.» And really blood is pouring in many regions of CIS. The heart wrings looking at today’s disorganization and force of new violence. Does the future hold in store the same for Belarus, and it can tear itself away from that circle only by the way of new violence, new civil war?!

The only basis on which the consolidation of a new society can happen on its difficult way to its future, in which it will be no place to political violence, we consider the idea of return of truthful interpretation of history. In that sense the idea seems salutary for the society, but unfortunately, it is far away from being realized in such quality.