Putin is Not an Amateur Historian; He Practices Historical Saber Rattling.
Russian President Vladimir Putin underpins Russia’s claim to supremacy in Eastern and Central Europe with a new historical narrative. Stalin is stylized as a saint and Poland as the guilty party in the Second World War. "Those who control the past also control the future," wrote George Orwell, the clairvoyant analyst of totalitarianism. With this in mind, Putin has recently turned to Soviet history. In this, he is not concerned with a truth-oriented process, such as that which began after the collapse of the Soviet empire in 1991, but with a politically useful narrative.