Russia Arrests Historian for Studying Russian History
Posted on Oct 15, 2009
A Russian historian faces four years in prison for having the nerve to research Stalin’s gulags, which Russian revisionists would have you believe either didn’t exist or were a form of forced vacation.
Stalin has been enjoying something of a makeover in Russia. He’s a reminder of a time when the country was proud and strong and, inconveniently, killed millions of its own people. A time when Russian authorities did things like arrest historians for researching gulags. —PZS
Mikhail Suprun was detained last month by officers from Russia’s security services. They searched his apartment and carried off his entire personal archive. He has now been charged with violating privacy laws and, if convicted, faces up to four years in jail.
Suprun had been researching Germans sent to Russia’s Arctic gulags. A professor of history at Arkhangelsk’s Pomorskiy university, his study included German prisoners of war captured by the Red Army as well as Russian-speaking ethnic Germans, many from southern Russia, deported by Stalin. Both groups ended up in Arkhangelsk camps.
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