Witnesses Against War #7: Soviet Jokes are Returning. Nostalgia

1 June 2022

Witness #7: Soviet Jokes are Returning. Nostalgia

Source: Witnesses Against War

Witnesses Against War is an anonymous international group of journalists, writers, historians and translators, who live in Moscow and London. For reasons of security, their project is anonymous. In addition to the above websiste, you can also find them on Instagram / Инстаграм  and Telegram / Телеграм.

Illustration by Yuri Pogorelov. On the tank it says ‘Nostalgia.’

An American boasts to a Russian:

– I have three cars. I drive a Ford to work, a Cadillac when I’m visiting friends, and a Volvo to drive around Europe.

Big deal – says the Russian. I go to work by tram; by metro when visiting friends and in a Lada when going to the dacha.

– And when you go to Europe?

– I go to Europe on a tank

This old Soviet dissident joke in the new reality of the Putin’s post-Soviet Russian Federation with its aggressive imperial anxieties, primitive nationalism mixed with nostalgia for the USSR, has unfortunately taken on a new tragicomic meaning. The joke refers to the Soviet occupation of Eastern European countries after World War II, the Cold War, the tank armies of the USSR that were always ready to rush into Western Europe in the event of a nuclear war, the suppression of workers’ protests in East Berlin in 1953 by tanks, the defeat of the Hungarian uprising in 1956 by Soviet troops, and the entry of troops into Czechoslovakia to suppress the “Prague Spring” in 1968.

Read in Russian here

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