City dwellers can choose between Felix Dzerzhinsky and Alexander Nevsky, 13th century prince and orthodox saint
Three decades after destroying the statue of Felix Dzerzhinsky, founder of the KGB, the Soviet secret police, the Russians can restore it. This Thursday, the 25th, Moscow City Hall, capital of Russia, opened a vote for the local population to choose which monument to install on Lubyanka Square. It currently houses the federal security service, which succeeded the KGB. City dwellers can choose between Dzerzhinsky and Alexander Nevsky, a 13th-century prince and orthodox saint.
Manager Elena Mosina is one of the Muscovites who prefers the Nevsky monument. “I would like to have a monument to Alexander Nevsky, but I don’t know if it would be appropriate to place it in front of the Lubyanka building,” he said. Student Valentin Belikov prefers to see the statue of Dzerzhinsky on Lubyanka Square. The original Dzerzhinsky statue was overthrown in August 1991. On that occasion, young Muscovites, euphoric about the end of communism, celebrated victory by overthrowing the statue. The vote to choose the monument comes at a time when nostalgia for Soviet leaders, such as Josef Stalin, is increasing. A survey by the Levada Center last year showed that 41% of young Russians were unaware of the political repression campaign of the Soviet Union commanded by the Stalinist regime.
* With information from reporter Nicole Fusco