Russian Communists Open 'Stalin Center'

Written by Jeppe W

Dec.20 - 2023 7:26 AM CET


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In Barnaul, a city in Siberia, a new “cultural and historical” center dedicated to Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin has been unveiled by the Communists of Russia party, The Moscow Times reports.

This development coincides with the eve of what would have been Stalin's 145th birthday on December 18.

The Stalin Center's main exhibit is a 200-kilogram bust of Stalin, previously unearthed from a nearby forest. Sergei Matasov, founder of the Stalin Center and head of the Altai region’s chapter of the Communists of Russia, described the venue as a place for preserving history and memory.

The opening of the Stalin Center has not been without controversy. The party has accused “the enemies of Stalin,” including supporters of former President Boris Yeltsin and jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, of slandering the center.

In response, the Altai region’s Communists of Russia declared on the Russian social media website VKontakte that they would deal with these critics as Stalin himself would have.

This event is part of a broader trend in Russia where Stalin's image has been undergoing a gradual restoration, despite the widespread atrocities associated with his rule. Notably, in October, a bust of Stalin was also placed at a memorial site in the Tver region, a site dedicated to victims of Soviet political repression.

The unveiling of the Stalin Center reflects the complex and often divisive views on Stalin's legacy within Russia, highlighting the ongoing debates over historical memory and its impact on current political and social dynamics.

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