August twenty-fourth is the anniversary of Ukraine’s independence. This occasion, which has always been celebrated with huge pomp by the young country, was not forgotten by the Donetsk breakaway government either.

On Lenin Square they put on public display the remains of the captured Ukrainian military technology. And on the memorial celebration held at the feet of the Lenin statue, they paraded the captured soldiers of the Ukrainian army past, as well as a number of other prisoners in civilian clothes – possibly hostages and local citizens arrested by the Donetsk militia, according to Rustem Adagamov, who published the photos.

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In machoistic Russian culture it is considered particularly humiliating that the captured soldiers were also accompanied by female militias. However, as the following video shows, the spectacular military escort could not prevent the spectators from throwing objects at the prisoners, or even slapping them in the face.

The ideological and choreographic model of the parade was obviously the one organized on 17 July 1944 in Moscow, the very first Soviet victory parade, in which the soldiers of the German army captured at Stalingrad were driven in rows of twenty along the main streets of the city. With the difference, that there, as witnesses recall it, aside from the slogans “Death to Hitler” and “Death to fascism”, there was very little aggression towards the prisoners. A selection of the archive photos of the 1944 parade was published last night without any further commentary by Ilya Varlamov.

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The parade, organized almost exactly seventy years ago, was concluded with a convoy of sprinkler trucks following the route of the parade, and symbolically cleansing the Russian land “от гитлеровской нечисти”, of Hitler’s filth. As the video shows, the Donetsk organizers did not forget about this final symbolic act either.

3 comentarios:

Rupert Neil Bumfrey dijo...

I am unable to re-post as I sense the parades in both Donetsk and Kyiv were not memorials, but more a glorification of brutality and autocracy!

Utterly shameful for a nation that seeks association with EU, which came about as an antidote to wars in Europe, and as for the humiliating shots from Donetsk, hell has not frozen over yet!

Studiolum dijo...

Don’t believe I am in favor of the Ukrainian regime. I know too well that country and its prevailing ideology, about which I have already written quite a bit, e.g. here or here, and I have no illusions about them.

Nevertheless, I consider the readers of río Wang adult enough so that when I write something negative about one party in a conflict, I should not necessarily counterbalance it with some negative remarks on the other party, too. True, sometimes my expectations fail, like when making fun about a Hungarian political party, and its followers immediately protest and associate me with the other party, forgetting that the previous day I made fun about that party as well. But by the persistent reading of río Wang they will hopefully grow up, too.

I regard the Ukrainian regime and their Donetsk opposition as heirs of the same brutal totalitarian ideas and behavior codes. In this respect I see no real difference between them. What interested me, as a researcher of visual propaganda, in the present counter-feast, was the faithful adoption of an old Soviet scenario, and the re-inclusion of a very ancient, but fortunately almost forgotten element into the symbolic arsenal of political feasts.

Rupert Neil Bumfrey dijo...

Sorry for creating the thought that you are partisan, not my intention, our views are very closely aligned, other than on the subject of cults, but each to his own :-)

Each week I am accused of being partisan by folks, primarily as I offer the alternative, the height of these absurd accusations was when I was accused of being #Islamic and a #terrorist for supporting political prisoners in the #UAE!