The Russian historian giving Stalin’s victims back their identityHistorians in the News
tags: Russia, Stalin, Anatoly Razumov
He has shone a light on the lives and deaths of tens of thousands of Joseph Stalin’s victims, but Russian historian Anatoly Razumov says his work is greeted with “indifference” in a country that still struggles to acknowledge the enormity of the bloody purges.
For the last three decades, Razumov has worked through archives to make public the names of those executed during Stalin’s purges in Leningrad, now Saint Petersburg, which targeted suspected “counter-revolutionaries” or so-called “enemies of the people” in the late 1930s.
“I haven’t discovered any logic to it. It was inhumane and inexplicable,” the historian told AFP of his findings, which he regrets now prompt little reaction.
Commemorating the victims remains a vexed question in Russia, more than 80 years after the height of the Great Terror, which saw millions executed and sent to Gulag prison camps or into exile in remote regions.
Under President Vladimir Putin, authorities have downplayed these darkest pages of Soviet history in the name of national unity and are sometimes even overtly hostile to such research.
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