This image of a Red Army soldier in Berlin in May 1945 was tweeted as part of its celebration of May Day by the youth wing of Sinn Féin.
No pasaron. pic.twitter.com/Lbtng876P9
— Ógra Shinn Féin (@Ogra_SF) May 1, 2021
(Incidentally, the original photos was altered to hide the fact that the soldier was wearing two watches, both of which he had obviously stolen as no Soviet soldier and almost no Soviet citizens had such an item.)
It was a glimpse into the mass looting and rape of hundreds of thousands of Berliners which had begun and which spread to the rest of eastern Germany for the next several years. The Allies had defeated the Nazis, but for the peoples of the Soviet Union and eastern and central Europe, the totalitarian nightmare continued as one half of the Stalin/Hitler alliance endured.
The youth section of a party that may well be in power throughout this country in the next decade has an obvious fondness not only for retro-totalitarian leftism, but for its current manifestations in China and Cuba.
Some of the audience on Twitter were not impressed, as was evidenced by the reference to the manner in which the Red Army replaced one form of brutality with another.
There was also the incongruity of a an allegedly nationalist party lauding the suppression not only of subject nationalities within the USSR, but of the peoples of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Romania, Bulgaria and eastern Germany.
Strange tweet – considering their obsession with self determination, support for “freedom fighters” globally, I would have thought SF would be anti Soviet Imperialism and be lauding ordinary citizens uprisings as in Budapest in 1956. pic.twitter.com/OOYctz77Cc
— PicassoRepublic 🇬🇧 🇮🇪 🇭🇺 (@PicassoRepublic) May 2, 2021
Why don't you ask the hundreds of thousands of Eastern Europeans who live in Ireland what they and their parents and grandparents think of the Red Army? https://t.co/ABp2CsPH8E
— Ronan McGreevy (@RMcGreevy1301) May 2, 2021
The Ógra might also be advised to read the founding document of their own party. This was issued by the Caretaker Executive following the IRA split in December 1969 and the founding of Provisional Sinn Féin after the January 1970 Árd Fheis.
A key reason for the divisions was the infiltration of the IRA and Sinn Féin by members of the Communist Party in the mid 1960s. Not only was that blamed for the acceptance of Partition through the recognition of Stormont, but for the “extreme socialism” which had replaced the radical republican social and economic programme based on Comhar na gComharsan.
If they go even further back into their own history, they will find that the relationship between republicans and Stalinists has always been marked by a series of attempted infiltrations. These began in the 1920s, led to the expulsion of Communists in the early 1930s, a split in the Curragh internment camp in the 1940s, and of course to the 1969/1970 split.
It is fitting then that the youth section of a party which has accepted Partition, the surrender of sovereignty to the EU, the subservient position of Ireland within global corporatism and its anti-national ideology, should be going the Full Monty on its acceptance of the ideology of those who were shown the door in the past. No longer it would seem.
That aside, it is surely disturbing that elected representatives who might well be in government in Dublin soon, as well as its future leaders are so besotted with the celebration of Communist totalitarianism. Imagine if you will the outrage were the youth section of another major party to tweet celebratory images of Nazism?
They are two sides of the same coin, as was formally recognised by Hitler and Stalin in August 1939. A neo-Nazi party would rightly not be considered to be a plausible party of government. Nor ought a neo-Stalinist one.