Greetings on Victory Day

09.05.2007 |
Yelena Bonner

Dear Friends!  My greetings on Victory Day!

For all that I have problems with this day. I am celebrating it for the 62nd time. It goes without saying that this is with my family, and friends, and with the whole country.

Yet as each year passes, I understand with ever greater clarity and bitterness that the Victory – both of those who fell in battle, and those who returned, has been stolen. For 364 days of the year it belongs to pillagers. And on only one day – 9 May – does it belong to us. This year even our day has been sullied by pseudo-patriotic young rabble enacting a spectacle of “Insulted victorious liberator”.

They’re supposed to be victorious liberators?

I am not offended by the transferring of the remains of those who died and of the monument. It is much more honourable for those who fell to lie in a military cemetery than in the hustle and bustle near a trolleybus stop. I was and remain offended by the words on the monument. These should have been (in Estonia and in any other country) not “To the Soldier Liberator”, but “To the Fallen Soldier”

We didn’t liberate anywhere, and we were also unable to liberate ourselves, although for four hard years of the War we hoped for liberation. We even said “After the War, if I survive, all my life will be different”. It didn’t happen! Not in 1945, not in 1991!

Yelena Bonner, Lieutenant of the Soviet Army Medical Corps

Veteran and Invalid of the Great Patriotic War, 2nd group

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