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Subject: Siege of Leningrad - 'third rail of Russian history' rss

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Wendell
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Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
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Hey, get your stinking cursor off my face! I got nukes, you know.
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An independent TV channel in Russia posted a poll on its website, asking "Should Leningrad have been surrendered to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of people?"

Shitstorm of criticism follows (the St. Petersburg prosecutor's office called the question 'blasphemous'). It's an interesting story, here is the Washington Post article.
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Greg Sager
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Let's kill them for asking!
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Robb Minneman
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Jackasses? You let a whole column get stalled and strafed on account of a couple of jackasses? What the hell's the matter with you?
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The fact that it is possibly a crime in Russia to ask such a question speaks volumes about the political climate in that country.

On a more practical level, one can dispute whether its underpinnings are correct. "... to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of people..." is not a known fact. A great many sources have noted that Hitler's plan for the East included leveling the great cities and forcing the inhabitants into the countryside to slave or starve. It's not a given that a surrender would have saved any lives at all.
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In Russia, you do not criticize Great Patriotic War. It criticize you!

Seriously, this is the equivalent of saying Washington should have surrendered at Valley Forge, or Britain in the Battle of Britain. I think there was a criticism of Stalinist leadership in there somewhere, probably, but it got lost in the noise, and was poorly done (it seems, from this remote, moonshot distance).
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Seth Owen
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robbbbbb wrote:
The fact that it is possibly a crime in Russia to ask such a question speaks volumes about the political climate in that country.

On a more practical level, one can dispute whether its underpinnings are correct. "... to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of people..." is not a known fact. A great many sources have noted that Hitler's plan for the East included leveling the great cities and forcing the inhabitants into the countryside to slave or starve. It's not a given that a surrender would have saved any lives at all.


Given the nature of the Nazi occupation, it's a very open question that surrender spared many lives at all even among the military forces.
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