And what of the rest of them?

Asks the BBC: Why isn’t Stalin as hated a figure as Hitler?

They explain that apparently it’s largely to do with the pro-USSR propaganda put out in the Second World War. But that misses the point rather a lot.

Over the years, Stalin killed many more people than the Nazis. As did the USSR, and the Chinese. So if the Nazis were evil (and, let’s be honest, they were), what of their contemporaries?

So why is the hammer and sickle an acceptable fashion statement, while the swastika is clearly not? Why is the phrase CCCP fun and edgy, while the merest mention of the Third Reich is bad?

And then you get to the dictators. Stalin may have a mild excuse – the whole propaganda effort. So why is Lenin an acceptable figure of fashion? Why is Mao gracing t-shirts? Why is young Fidel on the walls of students, and why is the unwashed face of Che even known outside of the nastier history lessons? Why aren’t we faced with big budget films about the nasty case of the shits that Pinochet came down with while bumming around South America?

Why are these men, these murderers, now symbols outside of ghost stories and lessons from history?

Answers on a postcard, please, because I’ve been idly pondering this issue for nigh on ten years and I don’t have any clue…

4 thoughts on “And what of the rest of them?

  1. It is all because you are told to.
    Youthful rebellion makes the anthitheses of those in power symbols to be used.

    Now , where is that truthful trustworthy slogan T shirt then……..

  2. Good point, but punks know how bad those symbols are and why people have an issue with them. That’s the whole point of displaying them.

    People with Che on their walls, however… Very few of them (that I’ve talked to, at any rate) are even aware that there is a down side to him. Because, like, he was young, and idealistic, and standing up for the common people against US Imperialist Aggression. And not, for example, running a prison system where class enemies were shot…

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