At the beginning of the week, we wrote that the Kremlin’s propaganda channels are trying to publicize the 9th of May more than ever this year in Estonia. Their aspirations were not fruitful. Both the placing of flowers at the Bronze Soldier and the Immortal Regiment marching in Tallinn, Sillamäe and Narva passed without excesses, and the number of participants was significantly lower than the 4,000 people they hoped for in their propaganda media.
The only minor incident that can be mentioned was a young man in Narva whose Hammer and Sickle banner was confiscated by the police. As the Russian language Delfi reported; it was an individual who had tried to do something similar last year.
With our southern neighbours, there were several Kremlin related activists that tried to start provocations but the police were able to maintain order very well. In Riga, however 15 people were arrested during demonstrations on the 9th of May most for drunken hooliganism. There was an incident in Moscow where garbage was thrown at the Latvian embassy.
Russia’s news channels did not find Estonia newsworthy yesterday. As shown by the monitoring probe Propamon all five news commerative events and marches, simply to these facts.
Several stories appeared in the Estonian press, which helped explain the May 9. phenomenon.
Natalja Kitam wrote an insightful article in the Eesti Päevaleht, referring to the fact that most Estonian’s conception of 9. May celebrations are based on stereotypes. In most cases, the motives are personal or family oriented. „Victory day“ is used by some politicians for propaganda purposes.
Professor Raivo Vetik of the University of Tallinn told Vikkeraadio that the different histories of the two communities is natural and should not be over dramatized but be appreciated as a natural part of a democratic society. Vetik also mentioned that Estonia’s integration indicators have started to get better in recent times.
In the ETV discussion program “Suud puhtaks” (Let’s clear up things) the studio public was in agreement that the day passed civilly and commerating the fallen dominated instead of celebrating a victory. The main difference of opinion arose about whether the St. George ribbon is merely a nicely coloured rosette or symbolizes imperialistic domination, aggressiveness and warfare. The majority were of the same opinion – perhaps the similar views of the guests was that no individuals with Kremlin point of views on 9. May were invited to the show.
Propastop’s postings touched upon the „Suud puhtaks“ as well as the Postimees position for support of the „liberation from Fascism“ narrative and the St. George ribbons and finds it is inappropriate for ERR to collect donations for veterans for these reasons. Propastop continues to believe that there are less propagandistic ways to support elderly individuals.
Pictured: Hammer and Sickle banners waving at the immortal regiment march even in Tallinn.