Prime Minister: Europe Is Not to Be Consolidated Unless its Historical Memory Is


2012 11 15


Today, Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius welcomed the participants of the European Forum United Europe – United History. The international Forum, which takes place in Vilnius, focuses on how Europe and its nations could join different historical experiences together into the single context of European history.

Addressing the participants of the Forum, the Prime Minister highlighted that consolidation of European memory is not an easy process, full of “psychological swamps”, which may be avoided if more is invested into historical research and public dissemination of its findings.

“Here, on our land, the Soviet and Nazi regimes, with the help of local collaborators, have knit such a complicated ball of responsibility that even a very experienced historian finds it difficult to disentangle it. These days, there are those interested to add to this ball the resistance of our nation to the occupations; to try to trivialize the risk taken by our citizens as they challenged Soviet and Nazi madness. Against this background, our efforts to explore history and to invest into historical education acquire even greater importance”, said the Prime Minister.

According to the Prime Minister, Lithuania seeks to include into this process as many as possible institutions of European countries as well as the European institutions.

“It is important that Europe, walking the path of political unification, does not lose its values. We must talk about the common understanding of European past, must see the diversity of this history and evaluate it using the same criteria. When we talk about political consolidation of Europe, we must also talk about consolidation of historical memory of Europe”, said Andrius Kubilius.

The Prime Minister noted that the actions of the Fifteenth Government for the restoration of historical justice in regard to the Lithuanian Jewish Community gives the future governments more opportunities to achieve condemnation of the Soviet crimes.

“The Goodwill Compensation for the Jewish Community Property, events in the framework of the Year of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust and giving attention to the historical and cultural heritage of the Litvaks are just some of the measures that should have been taken long ago and that, I hope, will be continued by the future Lithuanian Government. I believe, that with the restoration of historical justice in regard to our own citizens we are provided with greater opportunity to demand responsibility for the injustices inflicted on us by other states. It is not correct to say “let us forget“, it is more correct to say “let us remember so that it will never happen again“, stressed the Prime Minister.

He also paid attention to the positive changes in the Russian historical conscience which are reflected in the brave condemnation of Stalinism by the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev during the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Political Repression in the city of Perm.

“These are very welcome changes. I would like to believe that these efforts to openly evaluate the Stalinist epoch will not be stifled and that archives will be opened to historians, and the repression victims and their family members as well as the fighters for freedom will not be offended in public by Soviet-time epithets”, said Andrius Kubilius.

The two-day international Forum United Europe – United History that has begun today is held at the Seimas.