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Prague Mayor Plans to Remove Soviet Statue, Russia Gets Angry

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Russian and Czech relations have heated up ever since a Prague district assembly voted to remove a monument of a wartime Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev.

RadioFreeEurope reports that the Czech Foreign Ministry called in Russia’s ambassador to the Czech Republic on September 13 over comments that Russian Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky made about the mayor of the Prague district who voted for the statue. Medinsky compared the mayor to a Nazi party official.

In the meantime, Russia’s Foreign Ministry responded by saying that the decision, “won’t be left unanswered.”

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Some see Konev, whose forces freed much of Czechoslovakia’s territory during World War II, as a brutal enforcer of Soviet rules in Central and Eastern Europe in the aftermath of World War II.

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Konev’s statue has been defaced several times, one of the most recent occasions being on August 21, the 51st anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968.

In response to this, Prague 6 district Mayor Ondrej Kolar put a tarp on the statue, which provoked pro-Russian supporters to remove it while others laid flowers at the statue.

“Deputy Foreign Minister Chmelar reminded the ambassador of the Treaty of Friendly Relations and Cooperation between our countries, which the Czech side strictly respects, assumes mutual respect and equality, and stressed that the issue of the statue of Marshal Konev in Prague 6 is an internal affair of the Czech Republic,” the Czech Foreign Ministry declared in a statement.

“He also warned against abusing history for political purposes and fomenting passions in this area,” it continued, addressing Medinsky’s comments about the Prague mayor.

On September 12, the Russian Embassy in Prague claimed that Prague 6 had launched “a campaign that offends the memory of Red Army soldiers, and the Czechs and Slovaks who were fighting to liberate Czechoslovakia and its capital from Nazism.”

The following day the Foreign Ministry in Moscow warned that this removal could become “a noticeable irritant” in relationships between the two countries and “seriously darkens their atmosphere.”

“We hope that the initiators of the unprecedented action, which is being prepared, will come to reason and will realize all consequences of their actions,” the Ministry added.

While the American Left is relentlessly pushing for political correctness and trying to deface monuments of American heritage, Central and Eastern Europeans are trying to re-assert their history of anti-Communism by removing monuments of figures who were responsible for the oppression of millions of people.

This represents a marked difference politically and culturally from the ever-increasing tide of leftism in America and the growing influence of right-wing populism in Central and Eastern Europe.

Big League Guns

Democrats Introduce Expanded Background Check Legislation

Democrats are going to implement a background check which targets “extremism.”

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Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy and California Congressman Mike Thompson brought forward legislation on March 2, 2021 that aims to broaden the federal background check system on firearms sales, according to a report by The Hill.

Under The Background Check Expansion Act,  gun sales and purchases between all unlicensed sellers and buyers would be subject to a mandatory background check. The background checks would not be applicable for law enforcement officers, lending out firearms for the purpose of hunting, temporary transfers for self-defense, or family members gifting a firearm. 

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and 43 Senate Democrats have co-sponsored this bill. Thompson, who is the chair of the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, reintroduced this legislation in the U.S. House

“For years, the bipartisan House-passed background checks bill languished in the Senate under Republican Leader Mitch McConnell. Now, with Senate Democrats in the Majority, we have the opportunity to act on this overwhelmingly popular, lifesaving legislation to protect American communities,” Schumer declared in a press release.

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According to a CBS News report, President Joe Biden has repeatedly called on Congress to pass stiffer gun control laws. This gun control bill will not pass so easily given how it will need 10 Republican senators to vote in favor of it.

Against the backdrop of the January 6 storming of the Capitol, such a background check will likely feature provisions that target so-called “extremists.” The ruling class has routinely lumped average gun owners with domestic extremists and will most certainly use recent events to justify encroachments on people’s right to bear arms. 

Biden is a veteran of the gun control movement, as evidenced by his sponsorship of the Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990 and the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban. With Democrats in control of all branches of the federal government, they will certainly move to pass gun control. However, their success is not guaranteed due to moderate Democrats like Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema and West Virginia Joe Manchin not being completely receptive to radical gun control that could alienate them from their more right-wing constituents.

Nevertheless, the Left has shown that it’s willing to act regardless of the political context. Keeping this in mind, gun owners must be ready to beat back any kind of gun control coming from D.C. Such fights will allow the Right to rebuild its forces and make a splash in the 2022 midterms and the 2024 presidential race. 

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