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Stalin and Lenin look alike pose with a tourist in Moscow. Credit: Getty, anouchka

On the streets of Moscow, hammers, sickles and Stalin are everywhere

Moscow, like many world cities, is dotted with impersonators vying for the attention and spare change of its tourists. Times Square has Elmo, Hollywood Boulevard has Superman, and Red Square, I observed on a recent trip, has Joseph Stalin.

It’s just one example of how communism is remembered in Russia. Hammer and sickle engravings on the State Duma (not to mention the planes of its flag-carrying airline Aeroflot), Lenin murals in the metro, and flowers at Stalin’s tomb before the Kremlin Wall are some others.

THE ENTRANCE TO THE FAMOUS GORKY PARK STILL HAS A HAMMER AND SICKLE ON

By comparison, it’s impossible to imagine Germany’s Lufthansa planes flying with swastikas on their rudders. Only last week a four-by-four metre swastika was unearthed by workers in Hamburg. Deeming it too heavy to move, the city employed jackhammers and bulldozers to destroy it.

That Russia wouldn’t feel compelled to do the same is clear. And while UnHerd’s new audio documentary from Douglas Murray focuses on the West’s short memory when it comes to the crimes of communism, a walk around downtown Moscow suggests Russia remembers the same period a little too fondly.

HAMMER AND SICKLE ON ENTRANCE TO A MOSCOW METRO STATION