Vladimir Putin spoke at the Memory Watch 2019 plenary meeting and learned about the Russian Search Movement’s projects, including the Frontline Portrait: A Soldier’s Destiny, which presents 27 portraits of Red Army soldiers that were painted at the frontline.
This nationwide event, due to last until April 6, will involve over 250 representatives of search associations from 82 Russian regions. They will discuss preparations for celebrating the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic War, the implementation of the state patriotic education programme for young people and the organisation of search projects in 2019.
Memory Watch 2019 includes a number of events, such as search expeditions, caring for military burial sites, holding exhibitions and patriotic events linked with perpetuating the memory of the Motherland’s defenders who were killed in action.
* * *
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Friends, veterans,
I congratulate you all on the beginning of a new Memory Watch event. First of all, I would like to congratulate the veterans I can see here, who are the most distinguished and most important guests of all meetings of members of the Russian search movement.
Your heroic generation defended and rebuilt our country, liberated the entire world from Nazism, and your sacred devotion to the Motherland and your moral strength inspire participants in the search movement, as well as many others. This inspires all of us to staunchly defend the truth about the Great Patriotic War and the immortal feat of our people, and reminds us of the need to defend our national interests and those of the people of Russia.
In all, 250 members of the search movement from 80 Russian regions have gathered here. This impressive line-up is hardly surprising: this year your traditional assembly has coincided with the organisation’s fourth convention.
Its agenda aims to sum up the results of your work and to prepare for celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory and, what is also very important, it includes a detailed discussion of a draft state patriotic education programme.
The current programme is to expire in 2020, and I am confident that the convention’s delegates will help chart priorities of the programme’s next edition.
The involvement of search movement members in drafting and implementing this document has great significance. It is you who discover previously unknown facts and events of our military history, reinstate the names of this country’s heroes and their destinies, as well as those great examples of genuine patriotism that should be used to raise and educate the new generations of Russian citizens.
I have repeatedly said, and I want to note this once again: history’s inseparable continuity is a foundation for our sustained movement. These values consolidate and unite our society.
We must do everything possible so that today’s children, teenagers, young people and all Russian citizens take pride in the fact that they are the heirs, the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the victors, so that they know the heroes of their country and, what is most important, know the heroes of their own families, and everyone would realise that this is part of our life.
The memory of the difficult and heroic war years and everyone who brought closer the victorious hour in 1945 is absolutely sacred for our people. And your personal contribution to its preservation is very meaningful for Russia.
At this point, I would like to highlight the educational aspect of your work, your educational initiatives. Working on the sites of past battles, you are restoring sincere, truthful history.
It is this truth without any embellishments that always goes to your heart and soul and finds a response in the hearts of all generations, including young people, our youth. It is no accident that your projects are truly in demand.
Scouts are playing a great role in preserving the common historical memory of the peoples of the world. It is enough to mention your friendship and close cooperation with your foreign colleagues who know and honour the feat of the liberator soldiers.
And, of course, I would like to make special mention of the Great Victory Achieved by Unity project aimed at enhancing cooperation of search teams in the former Soviet republics.
The results of the search movement participants’ work and your very attitude to work certainly deserve all-round support. The movement will continue to enjoy organisational and grant support and necessary conditions will be created for your consistent and coordinated activities.
In the near future, experts will start elaborating a state programme on immortalising the memory of those who died defending our Motherland. Its goal is to regulate all legal aspects of the search movement, including assistance from government bodies of all levels.
I would like to emphasise that all issues related to befitting memorialisation of the Great Patriotic War heroes and Nazi victims should be resolved.
I would like to congratulate you again on the beginning of Memory Watch. I wish you success and all the best. Thank you very much for your efforts and your attention.