The signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact led to the start of World War II. The war turned global after Germany attacked Poland as two colonial empires, France and Great Britain, became directly involved in the war after Germany’s attack. Great Britain consisted then of the largest countries in history and played a huge role in the final victory, doctor habilitate of history Pavel Moraru stated in a public debate hosted by IPN.
The historian said the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact consisted of two parts – the nonaggression pact and the secret additional protocol. Germany, seeing that the Soviet Union initiated negotiations with Great Britain and France, proposed signing a non-aggression treaty with the Soviet Union, but the Soviets demanded that the nonaggression treaty should have an additional secret protocol. The nonaggression treaty can be considered illegal as the given protocol referred to third parties. A nonaggression treaty is signed between two, three or more sides, but does not refer to the fate of other countries.
The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was a diplomatic and territorial success for the Soviet Union. Under this, the Soviet Union managed to bring territories of the former Russian Empire inside its borders. It was an achieved objective. Also, the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact hit the German-Japanese alliance. On August 23, 1939, when the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was signed in Moscow, Japan was suffering a defeat to the Soviet Union on the Khalkhin Gol lake in Mongolia. For Japan, the signing of the pact was a betrayal on the part of the German ally and immediately after its signing, Japan said that it would not become involved in the war in Europe.
According to Pavel Moraru, by signing the Molotov- Ribbentrop Pact, the Soviet Union didn’t aim to put off the start of the war. This is a Soviet myth formulated earlier as the Soviet Union didn’t have reasons to delay it. On the contrary, it wanted to start to take action as swiftly as possible, aiming to communize the whole Europe. Another myth is that the Soviet Union wasn’t ready for war and was taken by surprise by the German attack of June 22, 1941. In reality, the Soviet Union intensely prepared for an offensive war, not for a defensive war.
The doctor of history noted that after the dismemberment of the Soviet Union, the Soviet regime didn’t undergo purification, wasn’t condemned at international level. The current Russian Federation practically inherited what was there in the Soviet Union. The Russian Federation when the Soviet Union collapsed didn’t go through this de-communization, pacification process and there was a particular percentage of citizens in Russia who aspired to revenge. After the dismemberment of the Soviet Union, Russia became a revanchist state and, owing to propaganda, that percentage of 20-30% passed the level of 50%. The Russian propaganda currently speaks about the role of Russia, the Soviet Union in the fight against Nazism, trying to monopolize that victory of the allies against Nazi Germany,” concluded Pavel Moraru.
The public debate entitled “Truth and lie about beginning of World War II” was the 18th installment of IPN’s project “Impact of the Past on Confidence and Peace Building Processes” that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation of Germany.