Friday, July 08, 2005

Basics of History for Special Ed Students

Apparently, even living through history makes it difficult to remember the facts of that history. That must be why Anatoly Karpov and Vladimir Putin, among others, forget that the Soviet Union is not Russia.

Russia ceased to exist when the Soviets took over. Russia continued as a "socialist republic" within the union, but it was only a part of it anyway - much of the Soviet Union was, and let's remind people of obvious facts of history now, annexed by armed conquest.

Did you know that Norway was invaded by the Nazis during World War Two? Would you therefore call the Norwegians "Germans," because an imperialistic superpower dominated the country and declared itself in charge? Then why do we insist on calling all the various citizens of nations once enslaved under the imperialist yoke of the Soviets "Russians," hm? It's about as big an insult to call an Estonian, a Latvian, a Georgian, or a Ukrainian a Russian as it is to call everyone in Asian "Chinese." Let's ignore cultural differences entirely and declare people to have the ethnic identity of their invaders. Cool, I guess?!

The use of "Russian" for "Soviet," besides masking the imperialism of the Soviet Union and its unifying by violence and murder the nations surrounding it, also tiptoes around the issue of its know, Communist. Call a Nazi a Nazi, and call a Soviet a Soviet. Don't pretend that the Soviet Union was just another Russian administration - it was the evil empire of our time. Accept it, shudder, and prevent its ever happening again, if by any act you can. Don't ignore it. Don't ignore the Soviet holocaust.

And don't let the darling chess player of the Soviet Empire, a man who never earned the world championship title and never played a fair match to defend it in his life, dismiss his culpability in supporting and giving publicity to his monstrous regime. And before Karpov lectures us on the treatment we give to a known criminal who has fled justice, let him consider what kind of mindset he must be steeped in to declare that results over the chessboard are more important than giving a violator of the law his due. One wonders if Karpov realizes just how evident his sins are when he declares that winning at chess is to be achieved at any cost, and let justice be damned.

I wonder why he'd think that, hm?

Let's not give Karpov an asterisk beside his name, with a footnote saying: "Won the title by default and defended it under suspicious circumstances with assistance from the KGB." Let us, instead, keep Fischer's name in the world championship rolls, from 1972-1985, with an asterisk to indicate that Korchnoi was never given a proper match to challenge for the title.


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