In the Soviet Union, the future was always certain; only the past could change without notice. The signal that it had changed was often the publication of a pseudo-scholarly article that denounced the “falsifications” of the existing version of history.

Here we go again. Recently Col. Sergei Kovalev, director of the scientific research department at the Institute of Military History, published an article on the Web site of the Russian Ministry of Defense titled “Fictions and Falsifications in Evaluating the USSR’s Role On the Eve of the Second World War.” He says it was the Poles who started the war in 1939, not the Nazis.

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