22:57 GMT28 February 2021
Listen Live
    Get short URL
    Charlottesville Violence During Pro-Confederate Protest in US' Virginia (68)

    A major rally of white nationalists protesting the removal of a statue of the Confederacy’s top general Robert E. Lee took place on Saturday, in Charlottesville, US. The protest subsequently led to violent clashes between the demonstrators and counter-protesters.

    During the clashes between the two camps, a car rammed into the crowd, leaving one killed and 19 others injured. In total, at least 34 people were wounded in the clashes. The governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, declared a state of emergency.

    On Saturday, United States President Donald Trump condemned the violence in Charlottesville and said the events were a display of "hatred, bigotry and violence," without, however, putting the blame on any particular group.

    Democrats and Republicans criticized Trump for his tepid reaction and refusal to specifically condemn nationalists. At the same time, many US media outlets were quick to blame the president for the rise of nationalism and violence in the society.

    In fact, Trump did not provoke a rift in the American society, according to Russian journalist and political commentator Viktor Marakhovsky. The number of racially-related clashes had spiked during the presidency of his predecessor Barack Obama.

    "At most, Trump came as a symptom of these deepening tensions. But he was never the reason. Instead, the real reason was the ongoing impoverishment and the enlarging gap between rich and poor," Marakhovsky wrote in an op-ed for RIA Novosti.

    Emphasizing the conflicting potential of this situation, the author underscored that attempts to step up the "fight against the mistakes of the past" are the real danger. But this is what the vanguard of the US political and media elite has been doing.

    "General Lee commanded confederate forces. Of course, slavery is a moral crime. But all of these took place a century and a half ago in a society with a different mentality and different norms. The reasons for the American Civil War were, first of all, political and economic. Today, the descendants of those who fought for the Confederate States are against demonizing the actions of their ancestors," Marakhovsky pointed out.

    According to the author, what we are witnessing in the US is the result of what can happen if "the collective memory is forcefully re-written to comply with modern, progressive standards."

    "It causes a fierce protest and when it overlaps with social tensions and economic problems a conflict sparks in the society. This lesson should not be ignored, not only for the US, but in many other parts of the world, especially if there are more important problems," the author concluded.

    Charlottesville Violence During Pro-Confederate Protest in US' Virginia (68)


    Charlottesville Authorities Cancel Vigil Due to Threat From White Supremacists
    Lovin’ It: Neo-Nazis Emboldened by Trump Response to Charlottesville Violence
    Injured in Charlottesville Violence Blame City Officials
    Awake and Aware: FLOTUS Statement on Charlottesville Violence Predates POTUS
    nationalism, clashes, protest, Donald Trump, Charlottesville, US
    Community standardsDiscussion