Companies Refuse to Make Lenin And Stalin Banners For Russian Communists

File Photo of Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin

MOSCOW. Nov 3 (Interfax) – Advertising agencies have been refusing to make or publish banners for Russian Communists with pictures of Vladimir Lenin and Josef Stalin and with Bolshevik slogans for the upcoming 95th anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution, a Communist leader complained.

“Three banners have become the stumbling block – those with pictures of Lenin, Stalin and the cruiser Aurora and with the slogans ‘Revolution will triumph!’, ‘The revolution has a beginning but no end,’ and ‘The Aurora will fire soon!’,” Valery Rashkin, a State Duma deputy and leader of the Communist Party’s Moscow city branch, told Interfax.

He said 12 agencies had refused to make or publish the banners.

“Our banners have no vulgarities or unprintable expressions on them, and we just can’t understand why we’re having disguised obstacles raised to us in getting them published,” Rashkin said.

He also said Communists were very displeased with recent attacks on Stalin from Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who accused the Soviet dictator of effectively waging war on his own people, and the refusal of the legislature of St. Petersburg to declare the Aurora a symbol of the city.

“We can see that in the 20-odd years since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russian authorities have created practically nothing new or valuable, that they are sponging on Soviet achievements but meanwhile have no qualms about slinging mud on the past of their country,” Rashkin said.

The reason for their slamming the Soviet era is that those in authority can see that “our people are fed up with so-called democracy, whose product are a handful of oligarchs and millions of people who are wallowing in misery and can barely make ends meet,” he said.

“If the government doesn’t stop its draconian measures and its pressure on us, there will surely be a revolution in the country,” Rashkin said.

Earlier this week, Medvedev slammed Stalin and his entourage for practices amounting to “war” on their nation but credited them with contributing to the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.

“Not only Josef Stalin but also a whole number of other leaders undoubtedly deserve an extremely harsh assessment for what was happening in those times,” Medvedev said at a meeting with the leadership of the Perm regional branch of the ruling United Russia party.

“It must stay in the annals of our history so that it can never happen again. Because a war one one’s own people is an extremely grave crime,” he said.

However, it would be wrong to “delete glorious pages in the Soviet part of the history of our country,” he insisted.

Not only the people but also the leadership of the Soviet Union should be credited with victory over Nazi Germany during World War II, he argued.

“It was a victory of the entire country, including its leadership, no matter what it was like, no matter what attitude we take to it. There were quite many people there who don’t seem nice to me, for example. But it was after all their victory as well – not only the victory of the people but
also that of the decisions that were made then. It was a joint effort,” he said.

He hailed the fact that a museum of victims of Stalin-era persecutions has been set up in the Perm territory and deplored the absence of such museums in other parts of Russia though, he said, there had been initiatives to that effect.

“We must remember what was happening. And, by the way, these words perhaps mean a lot more here in the Perm territory than in other places, where people have forgotten what was happening in the 30s and 40s,” he said.

Since 1991, Russia has been observing Remembrance Day for Victims of Political Persecution on October 30, commemorating victims of Stalin’s reign of terror, which peaked in 1937-38.

The day involves memorial events nationwide, including the annual “Bringing Back the Names” rallies at the Solovki Stone in Moscow, organized by human rights group Memorial, during which lists of victims of Stalin’s executions are read out.