Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

Daniel Sullivan

By Daniel Sullivan

Soviet flag over Berlin.

On May 8, 1945, at 11:01 pm Central European Time – already May 9 in the USSR – the German surrender took effect, ending World War II in Europe. The war with Germany and her fellow members of what we now call fascist allies in Europe – Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, Slovakia and Finland – had already claimed the lives of perhaps 50 million people. In the ensuing years, oceans of ink have been spilled by right-wing historians and polemicists in an attempt to distort or even minimize the significance of this date. The purpose of this rewriting of history is in some cases to defend fascism, but in many more it is simply to diminish the prestige of the Soviet Union, the first socialist state. We think it is appropriate to call to mind a few facts.