Moscow, January 6, Interfax - Before the start of the year marking the 100th anniversary of the revolution Chief Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar said that Lenin and Stalin have soaked the country in blood and he stood for the reburial of the body of Lenin and refurbishing the mausoleum into a museum.
"The body of Lenin should be interred, and the tombs at the cemetery near the Kremlin Wall should be relocated to other cemeteries. Representatives of all denominations share an opinion that this is needed to be done. As to the Lenin's mausoleum, I believe that it is unnecessary to destroy it, as the building organically fitted in with the Red Square ensemble. It would be better to set up a museum dedicated to the Soviet era at the mausoleum," Lazar said in an interview with Interfax-Religion.
Having given the assessment to Lenin and Stalin, he noted that both of them "are people who overflew the country with blood and sought to replace the faith in the God with a cult of idolized leaders."
Lazar admitted that for him the Soviet period of history is the dark times, because the Bolsheviks have been seeking for their goal "through violence that reached its apogee under Stalin."
"Severe restrictions have been in effect against the believers [regardless of their religious identity] practically throughout the entire Soviet period. Until Stalin's death they were subjected to large-scale repressions - people were imprisoned or executed simply for the fulfillment of the duties of a clergyman. Then the repressions against the believers became individual, but different harassments and restrictions remained in place that I have still witnessed in the late 1980s. All good what people are speaking about, recalling the Soviet Union, existed not thanks to, but rather in defiance of the regime," he said.
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