Commemorating the Battle of Stalingrad
Statement by MEP Jiří Maštálka
On the 2nd of February 2018 we marked the 75th anniversary of the victory in the Battle of Stalingrad. This battle on the banks of the Volga River in Russia, for which mankind has paid more than two million lives and hundreds of thousands of crippled, has become a turning point in the history of civilization: face to face with the threats of world domination of one nation, people have chosen the way of freedom, coexistence in peace, freedom of nations and cultural diversity.
The German nation, aware of its historical guilt and the causes of the national tragedy, said "Niewieder" of fascism, nationalism, and the demands of one state for exclusive control of the world.
Today, however, people on all continents ask their politicians again: have you forgotten about the lessons of the Second World War, which have been given the opportunity to be just by encouraging the aggressor?; will not pick up terrorists - now faithful to the West, and supplied with weapons - tomorrow these weapons against European and American citizens?; will not the drones that have attacked the Russian military base in Syria also attack our cities and civilian aircrafts in order to underpin yet unapplied calls to the need to create a united front against terrorism?; can we, Europeans, believe that Americans are able to protect us from Korean missiles when even Americans in Hawaii do not hope for it? why are we punishing Russia with sanctions, forgetting that the courage and devotion of its soldiers saved Europe's democracy 75 years ago?; why shamefully we close our eyes on the Nazis publicly celebrating their idols on the banks of the Dnieper and the Baltic Sea, desecrating the graves of the fallen for our freedom?; really should Russia still believe that we "Never more" ?!
Why do not we, European politicians, ask ourselves if we do not move to meet the point behind which the last war on Earth will become inevitable?
The soldiers who had fallen in the battle at Stalingrad had long been reconciled with the future. Is not the time now appropriate for the reconciliation of the living, with the heads mournfully bent over the monuments of war? We must not turn geopolitics into a global crime again.