Hammer and sickle to come down from Brno war monument
The city of Brno has made up its mind on a contentious issue: the hammer and sickle on a public monument to fallen Red Army soldiers from the Second World War is coming down. In a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the city council decided to end two years of protests and vandalism by removing the still-controversial symbol for good.
“What I’m promising with the city’s proposal is that we will try to pacify the situation, because I myself am quite unhappy that the actual meaning of the memorial is being ruined by the two sides in this dispute. Its meaning is not to commemorate the totalitarian communist regime, but to remember the end of the Second World War and the people who gave their lives in the liberation of Brno. And unfortunately, the hammer and sickle on the side of the monument is diverting the public understanding of the monument’s real meaning somewhere else altogether.”
The city has therefore proposed a compromise of sorts: the star stays, the hammer and sickle go, and the city shows its respect for the dead in another way:
So far the imposed compromise has not soothed hurt feelings. The communist party is unhappy, and Russian embassy has so far made no comment on the matter. But the final say is still in the hands of the conservationists, who will ultimately decide what can and cannot be done to the pyramid, which has been a protected monument since 1958.