Why Putin Isn’t Celebrating the Bolshevik Revolution

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tags: Putin, Bolshevik Revolution

William Pomeranz is the deputy director of the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies of the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. He also teaches Russian law at the Center for Eurasian, Russian, and East European Studies, Georgetown University.

In 2016, President Vladimir Putin proudly participated in the 75th anniversary of the beginning of World War II commemorations, poignantly holding a picture of his father during the “immortal regiments” march.

And yet an even more auspicious date is fast approaching—the centennial of the 1917 Russian revolution, the seminal event that set the terms of the global ideological debate for most of the 20th century.

The centenary of the Russian revolution, therefore, should be a time of major reflection, and indeed, historians in Russia and around the world are marking the occasion with conferences and reappraisals of this crucial anniversary.

Vladimir Putin has also called for an honest assessment of the Russian revolution, yet no matter what the results of these studies, they are unlikely to enter Putin’s political narrative.

Putin has already chosen what he needs from the Soviet past: great power status, control of the commanding heights of the economy, victory in World War II and national stability. The upcoming centennial of the Russian revolution invariably upsets this selected memory and will be more disruptive for Putin than therapeutic.

Read entire article at Newsweek

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