MOSCOW -- Putin's goal was to convince average Russians to equate the nearly holy war against fascism with the regime's current escapade in Ukraine. Kremlin spin doctors have been reinforcing that association for months with a constant torrent of claims that Ukraine is besieged with "fascist sentiment," which is attempting to justify Hitler's atrocities.
Enmeshed in a deadly struggle with Russian separatists, many Ukrainians are seeking to fashion their own nationalist ethos. While that is somewhat understandable, Bandera is a poor model. Seventy years after the end of World War II, Ukrainians must eschew such symbols and look elsewhere in the search for a national identity.
Today's texts acknowledge "blemishes" like the internment of Japanese Americans, but the texts either ignore or gloss over the fact that for almost a decade, during the earliest fascist invasions of Asia, Africa, and Europe, the Western democracies encouraged rather than fought Hitler and Mussolini, and sometimes gave them material aid.
Freedom of inquiry and thought must surely encompass the right of students to discuss and think about ideas, including illiberal ideas. The idea that a "Nietzsche Club," in particular, is not appropriate for a serious university (one with several Nietzsche scholars on its faculty, ironically enough) is astonishing.