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Faded celebration of Russian Revolution

Posted November. 10, 2017 09:00,   

Updated November. 10, 2017 09:21

한국어

Marking the 100th anniversary this year, the Russian Revolution is also referred to as “October Revolution” as the communist party was established on October 25, 1917 according to the Julian calendar adopted by the Imperial Russia. The modern solar calendar says the revolution occurred on November 7. However, the epicenter of the revolution that shook the entire world remained calm on the anniversary. “Why should we celebrate it?” said a spokesperson of the Kremlin when asked about the day of the Russian revolution by foreign reporters last month.

His answer held true. The anniversary of the Russian Revolution was celebrated with little pomp and circumstance on Tuesday scarcely attended by a small gathering and a street march with the communist party at the center of the event, which is now reduced to a minority political party. Vladimir Putin, the Russian president dubbed the “Czar of the 21st century” while managing to stay in power for 17 years, must have found the word “revolution” to be highly unpalatable for its connotation of a breakaway from the ancient regime. With the next election to seal his fourth consecutive term coming up in March next year, gathering a large crowd must have been a risk for him that could turn into a massive anti-government protest.

Then how is the public sentiment towards the first communist revolution in the world? An April survey found that 48 percent of people felt positive about the October Revolution, while 31 percent gave negative answers, and 21 percent withheld them. Such emotional ambivalence of the public can be ascribed to the aftereffect of the revolution that hurt too much and lingered too long. The Russian public was promised beautiful ideologies when Vladimir Lenin established the Soviet Union in 1917, but none of them was realized, and his socialist regime wreaked havoc not only in Russia but in many parts of the rest of the world.

“We need to ask ourselves if it is truly impossible to develop through gradual progress instead of staging a revolution, and if it is really not possible to take steps forward without destroying the country and trampling on the lives of millions of people,” said President Putin, breaking his silence on the 100th anniversary of the revolution. Regardless of his intention, it is noteworthy that he pointed out the toxic nature of revolution. The chant for “equal shares of bread and land” eventually translated into “shared poverty and misery” and resulted in a brutal power struggle. Even the motherland of the socialism characterized by politics of terror and violence wants to leave behind its history. Such history is an on-going reality in North Korea, which is simply heartbreaking.