communismWe’ve been having an interesting debate on freedom of speech and “hate speech” recently, with many of you weighing in with your thoughts. We had one comment from Marinko, however, who criticised the way the debate was framed:

Why do you propose the banning of [extreme] right wing parties, and not [extreme] left wing parties and communists? … Let’s debate about the banning of [extreme] left-wing parties! Or about extreme parties in general (left and right together)!

We should point out that Debating Europe doesn’t propose the banning of any political parties; we were discussing a suggestion by Spanish MEP Juan Fernando López Aguilar that European national governments should pass stronger laws against hate speech. In fact, there are already laws against hate speech in many European countries, including the UK, France and Poland.

However, it happens that Debating Europe is partnered with the World Schools Debating Tournament, which held its grand final yesterday in Romania. One of the motions they have been debating during their competition is: “This house believes that denial of crimes of communist regimes should be illegal.”

Again, this question touches upon issues of freedom of speech. Currently, it is illegal to deny the crimes of Nazism in many countries in Europe (including Germany, Austria, Belgium and Romania), whilst other countries (such as France, Luxembourg and Portugal) have made it illegal to deny the existence of any “crimes against humanity”. And a few countries (including the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Hungary and Poland) have explicitly made it illegal to deny the crimes of communist regimes. Should other European countries adopt such laws?

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What do YOU think? Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of communist regimes? Or does this infringe upon freedom of speech? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we'll take them to policy-makers and experts for their reactions.

  1. Katerina Kyriazi

    it is a philosophical question, we can either go the American way that freedom of speech is above anything, or if we continue on the thought control agenda we currently have we need to ban both sides of the spectrum as arguments ie Nazism and Communism crimes

    • Mikko U.

      I’d point out that whilst what Katerina says is the traditional American narrative sold, today the freedom of speech of their citizenry is trumped continuously by many legislations, most notably by national security arguments and corporate interests of business lobbyists.

    • Limbidis Adrian

      Haha let’s be honest here about this “american freedom” which is fed to us daily.
      There is no freedom of speech.
      The only speech allowed is the one who mesmerizes the population, but everytime they touch on a REAL subject the state comes down hard on them.

    • Diogo Maia e Silva

      Crimes committed against Humanity should always be made clear to the public. Therefore, world leaders should be obliged to denounce the atrocities of the Communism, Nazism, Fascism.. Whatever the regime is. However, that is not exactly what you can say the US do, since their troops violate Human Rights daily and protest voices are silenced..

    • Kroum Balabanov

      Katerina, what do you mean by thought control we currently have? are there countries in the EU, where denial of commie or nazzi crimes is illegal?

    • R. R.

      Crimes of communism are of different nature than the ones commited under the Nazi ideology. Please just mind that for the rest of the ongoing debate.

      I’m referring to the industrial annihilation of human beeings because of constructed biological characteristics. Never happend befre or after. That adding up to and being part of a war of annihilation in eastern Europe.

      In Germany denying the holocaust is illegal, which has its good reasons in germany. Freedom of speech should be very high valued as to prohibid opinions does not make them disappear or noneffective.

    • Kroum Balabanov

      I agree. But debate should be based on historic evidence, i.e. open archves among other things

    • Kroum Balabanov

      Such as…?

    • Kroum Balabanov

      What crimes of capitalism do you mean, Andrew?

    • R. R.

      How about exploitation of the people of the global south, opressive production foundations, huge gap between obscene wealth (60 million to more than 1 Tr.) and extreme poverty to death by malnutrition, even though there would be enough for everybody. How about besides the one half starving, the other halfs’ majority has to choose not more than one profession to be in for the entire life, what about highly selective social structures?

  2. CitizenoftheEU

    Yes, that’s what Europe needs, more censorship, more thought-police, more speech-police. /sarcasm

  3. Andrea Silenzi

    Absolutely YES. Crimes are illegal per se but actually we need to clarify facts putting some milestones in our memory

  4. Unimatriks Ziro

    red crimes have never been punished anywhere. they are often mixed with antifascist movement which was not predominantly communist as it is often claimed.

  5. Quiterio Alberto Báez Benítez

    Every political kind about totalitarism must be ilegal declared. nowadays, and being esceptical in use, many other regimes declared as democratic has used torture, murder, and war as a way to rule. The authentic label is totalitarism, in any way its presented.

    • Kroum Balabanov

      No democracyis perfect, Alberto. Yet there is a difference between criminal or ilegal practices or circumventing the law in a democratic environment and an outright totalitarianism. Don’t put everything in one basket, pls

  6. Maria Colorful Flower

    freedom of speech is not the authorization of dispersing hate messages against minorities or certain members of the society… just take a look at ex-communist countries or countries that allow the existence of neonazi parties into their parliament… look how they treat their minorities, look how much their ideas are taking effect into the society, and how dangerous they are for the social stability…

    • Talis Briedis

      Maria, name one country with neonazi’s in parliament? Only “people” who are making such a claim, are the remnants of the soviet occupation that stayed in an ex-soviet country ILLEGALLY after the collapse of the soviet union. Time to send the armed tourists HOME!

  7. JJ

    Wohoo, McCarthyism in Europe, that would be a turn out for the books. I’m assuming we’re talking about past crimes vis-a-vis Eastern Europe and not about prosecuting current regimes which could prove slightly problematic and arrogant on the EU’s part?
    In terms of crimes, anything which goes against crimes against humanity (mass murder, disappearances, state corruption) could be looked at but it would be a brave court who tries to go to trial. I’m not sure the European Court would have the authority on this?
    By all means, if a crime against life took place, please investigate and put a case together for a court that has jurisdiction. Sadly I think many cases wont get the justice they deserve, as such I’d rather we focused in helping people in the now and give the past the respect and remembrance it needs.

  8. Ruth Chircop

    I think one should not call Maoism or Stanlinism or Lenilism as Marxism. Marx himself said he was not a Marxist so first what is meant by Marxism has to be defined.

    On other what about the crimes of neo liberalism such as the environmental destruction and the social problem it brings.

    • Mohammed A.A.

      Marx said that in context to french workers labeling their own political work as Marxism. He did not mean it literally.

      And yes you are correct. If we are to ban “communist crimes” from being denied than we should ban denying American imperialism and French neo-colonialism while we are it. I see historians debate whether “communist crimes”(which I am assuming is Stalin’s purges and the Great Leap Forward) are as exaggerated as American democracy™ makes them out to be or if the Great Leap Forward simply failed due to weather issues and whatnot. Whereas Nazi and fascist crimes(love these euphemisms) are as clear as ever.

  9. Goranapp

    I have nothing against any reasonable action to prevent any crime in the future. However, I do not think it is accurate to use the term “communist regime”. Even if they used to call themselves communists, in fact they are not.

  10. Ilias Katsampalos

    did communism itself commited a crime….communism is not a person who commits a crime but a political philosophy….stalin killed almost 20.000.000 inocents…he is a murderer…but communism has nothing to do with that…i can name myself communist and become the biggest capitalist in the history of humans…look china…is this communism???this is insame guys…

    • Aliona Negoita

      I think your comment is insane. Stalin killed in the name of communism. Similarly Mao in China. Consequently, the crimes of communism should become illegal to deny.

  11. James Stevens

    It would be hard considering the EU is just a giant communist state, run by a bunch of failed Socialists/Communists that as usual do nothing for the people but are out only for themselves. All former communists should be jailed for crimes against humanity, but then so should the leadership of the EU.

    • Gabriel

      All former communists? There are about 4 million former communists in Romania (20% of the population), counting only full members of the communist party in 1989.
      Strictly speaking, I am former communist, too, because in 1989, aged 15, in highschool, I had to join the Communist Youth like all my colleagues. Like all the Romanian youth.
      Are you going to send to jail the pioneers and the homeland hawks too? (two communist organisations for kids). That way, some more millions Romanians might qualify.

  12. Paul Galbally

    Of course it shouldn’t, we are trying to build a truly free European civilization, in which all EU citizens are treated as adults, and are free from the thought control of totalitarian systems, neoliberalist capitalist dogma, nationalist rhetoric, commericialized media control, religious biogtry or utopian fantasies. To do that, you have to give people true freedom to debate all these issues, and to listen to and refute those that would deny the horrors of the past and the current hate and terror being perpetrated in the current age. The way to refute denial of reality is with critical thinking and evidence, not by shutting down debate, by criminalizing thoughts and language, that’s what dogmas and mystic religions do and it is against everything that the EU should stand for.

  13. Joaquín Alberto Puche Jiménez

    Im spanish, and in this country the right wind which actually rules the Goverment and Justice refuses to deny the crimes of general Franco, the dictator (1939-1975). Of course, they are the same people and their sons…

  14. Nikolai Holmov

    The laws countries adopt are a matter for the countries involved.

    Therefore it is rather irrelevant what I or anybody else thinks what any nation should or should not ban, or make illegal.

    As I have already said in another thread, a ban on banning may not be such a bad idea given that governments and politicians like to be seen to be doing “something” if an issue, no matter how much support it genuinely has amongst the electorate, gets enough media time.

    More often than not, the need to be seen to be doing “something” leads to ill-conceived knee jerk legislation that in truth was never needed.

    By banning “something” or making “something” illegal, does it make it go away? – No – so is that the right policy decision to make in the first place, or are there other alternatives that may be effective (even if over time) than can be reached by a little creative thinking without the need to legislate?

    Does restricting my freedom of speech or expression stop me speaking or expressing myself? – No.

    Having made illegal the denial of nazi and communist crimes, should we then ban the denial of incidents that would today be considered as crimes against humanity by the British, French, Austrian, Portuguese, Turkish, Dutch, Spanish etc. empires over the past 200 – 300 years as well?

    Which denial should we make illegal and which allow to persist over what time scale? Do we make illegal denial only of incidents of extreme ideology, or do we look at the specific incidents of empires gone by?

    Where and when do you stop banning?

  15. Daniel Kelly

    It’s dangerous and unnecessary to lock people up because of opinion – even a ridiculous one. Stupidity is not a crime.

  16. Carlo Braga

    Completely agree! But what about the crimes committed by France, England, Spain, Portugal, Italy… and every other European country?. People killed, tortured or just “missing” in the name of an ideology, of an religious belief shouldn’t also be remembered in this situation?…

  17. Friedrich Alexonn Fon Glumann

    It was huge crime! Not ideology was bad, but people… Stalin with NKVD, KGB, all communist party who 50 years was raping whole my country it’s people and it’s freedom to think and live free… :( Many creative and well minded families was prisoned died in Siberia. p.s. STALIN = HITLER

  18. Rozalia Gyöngyi Turean

    It must be illegal, because of reality from history. We must protect the next generations to do not make the same gullible mistake, because communism is a dreamland, an utopia. The selfish human nature and the jungle law force the hand of individuals to make own reserves for following bad days, because of instinctual procreation and also the need of protection of own babies, family, so, the feeling of protector obligtions for the next generation.

  19. Боян Максимов

    EU needs first a Law against NGOs, which are supported and sponsored outside the union. Before against comunist or nazis speeches! We are under new regime – USA regime, that produce even the worstest economic agreement, between bold side of Atlantic Ocean

  20. Sigmund Flower

    I agree with Unimatriks Ziro, in many european countries the communist crimes were always hidden or justified as anti-zazi reactions. Great historical falsehood!

  21. João Pedro Alves

    I want a free and just society, we must always speak the truth, however it hurts. Freedom of speech can never be questioned, nor should we prophesy ideologies as if the salvation of mankind, we must evolve, Im an Anarchist

  22. Profile photo of João Pedro Alves
    João Pedro Alves

    I want a free and just society, we must always speak the truth, however it hurts. Freedom of speech can never be questioned, nor should we prophesy ideologies as if the salvation of mankind, we must evolve

  23. Maurice Bisaccia

    I think that in general the policy “of denying” doesn’t work. It’s better to inform, to debate, to communicate and let people create theyr own opinion.

  24. Nate Do

    “The crimes committed in the name of the people”
    Is it crimes? Is it crimes to carpet bombs the cities in Germany during WW2 or drops the two nuclear bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? It’s a matter of views.
    I don’t think that should be any laws for denial. A lot of people in the “free world” still denial that racism existed among them or capitalism did not committed no crimes. However, I think that the laws should allow a person; let that be scholars, students, people who interested in this debate and the general public to see the all sides of the issues. Let them be the judges of this questions but our jobs to shed the lights on the matter from multiple angles.
    Let the public judge it on their values. Moral is a perspective matters too because moral values in the US might not be similar to the values in Middle East, Africa, or Asia.
    I don’t think it should become a law in Europe because different countries think differently even among Europe as a whole and even among the European Union. In addition, people of different values, beliefs and political views think differently as well. It should not be a law that stated that denial of the crimes of communism is a crime. But the laws should be that the crimes of communism of should be showed and the debate surrounding the crimes.
    And also, if it is a law, how are you going to enforce it. Yes, you can enforce it in the education system where text books and teachers have to include the crimes of communism but does it prevent the people to deny it? I think the answer is no. Some part of Europe, people actually miss the “good old days” of socialism and communism. Such phenomenon is called “Ostalgie” – the remembrance of the East. If such laws was enacted should films like “Good bye Lenin” or “Sonnenallee” be banned because these films did not include any mention of the crimes of the oppressive GDR regime but concentrated on the good side of the life which in some way could be considered denial of the crimes?
    There shouldn’t be a law making the denial of the crimes illegal but rather the law should make it illegal to not inform the public of the crimes that committed by the communist regimes or any regimes, governments in the world. The people at some level should know the crimes that were committed in their names.

  25. Miguel Delié

    The crimes of all totalitarian regimes (and also other kinds of abuses by government even if democratic #helloNSA) must always be denounced.

  26. Alex Sekkpefb

    Crimes against human rights should be crimes no matter the color of the regime/dictatorship that made them.

  27. Maurice Bisaccia

    An other point I don’t understand? Why the problem is proponed just between Communism and Nazi-Fascism crimes? There are many different organizations that committed olocausts.

  28. Santi Quiñones

    Of course not. Denial of Nazi crimes is not a crime because of its rightist ideology, but because of its intrinsically murderer, socially-toxic premise. It is impossible being a Nazi without supporting race misconceptions and violence by itself. On the contrary, it is perfectly possible being a Communist being antiracist and pacifist.

  29. Paulo Milheiro da Costa

    Nazism and Communism are both murderous ideologies, the difference brtween them being the fact that the Soviet Union (after cuddling up to the Nazis) ended the war as victors. That said, democracies should not punish people for what they believe or chose to deny. Even defenders of Nazism or Communism.

  30. Philip Sabev

    YES, why are we even having this discussion of course we should’nt deny the crimes red comitted oh, wait maybe not because he was doing those crimes in the people’s name yeah sure the secret police sounds clandestine and very suspicious but the people’s secret police sounds completley fine and every crime they commit and every soul that perishes from their torture is comitted in your name because you are the people.

  31. Valerio Django Pellegrini

    We should not deny, we should educate. Both “comunism” and Nazism were points of evolution of men. We should understand what happened into deep. By the way If you have to write a law that criminalizes those who deny the crimes of Nazism and “comunism” I would put one that focuses on those who denie genocides happened. In the end I would like that what they call comunism was not comunism, was totalitarism as Nazism was.

  32. Eric Petry Malaise

    It’s difficult for the historians to judge that question. First in many cases, Communism(s), whathever the communists themselves said about, were more to see with national histories and identities than the pure history of Urss itself and Stalin’s crimes into Russia. The history of communism in Italy, for example, is very different from the communism in belgium where Julien Lahaut was not a criminal but only republican. The position of the leaders could be firmly condamned : it occures that for many historians, Thorez (leader of PCF) known for Stalin’s crimes but was reticent to communicate the Krutchev report to the militant. Sartre defended mao’s and kmhmer politic. Second, many communists in the western europe were, over all other motives, pacifists or real resistants. From 1940 to 1945, many of them died, victims of nazies. Many historians explain that communist ideology does not call himself naturally or clearly for mass murder or killing like nazi does. I’m not convince myself but i admit that is a good argument for not condamn communism like nazism in the same way. I think this question must be treated case by case. It’s diddicult to treate the question globally. I don’t like communism and communists and no doubt that Stalin and co were mass criminals, of course. All sort of persecutors in Roumania, Russia, Cambodge or wherever comunism commeted crimes against humanity must be judge and condamn. But a global comdanation is a little bit difficult to define. We must be very prudents because we know where this sort of jugment begins but not where it could end…

  33. Horia Neagu

    Yes, way to go! That’s how you educate kids about the perils of abusive censorship-driven dictatorships: by abusive censorship.

  34. Roland Knaap

    it should be illegal to deny the crimes of Stalin, but of communism? that is a loaded word, Marx was a communist, but i do not see him as a criminal…..

  35. Tatjana Pocrnic

    All crimes done because of political affiliation,religion or belief should be punished,why should crimes made in the name of communism be exempt?

  36. Ranoldus

    It should be illegal to deny the crimes of Stalin. That is something concrete,
    the crimes of communism? that is something vague. Communism is a school of thought. Stalin was a dictator, with some communist ideas, but mainly a dictator who killed more people than Hitler.

  37. Carmen Rodica

    ALL crimes and torture methods based on ideological reasoning MUST be punished – including those from communist regimes

  38. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    A Europa esta numa faze de construção de uma civilização europeia verdadeiramente livre na qual todos os cidadãos são tratados como adultos Agora todos os estados membros devem travar esses grupos radicais que existem dentro da Europa E os criminosos que cometem crimes de racismo que sejam levados há justiça E o passado para superar olhar para o futuro da UE

  39. George Danieldsg

    Communists defeated Nazis in WW2.All regimes have some crooked politicians and there are int courts which judje there works.Communism is an ideology about the human life of justice and happines and will come after capitalism with its atrocities which govern modern society with crimes totally out of human values.Today we have capitalism of market vultures.

  40. Ronan

    Nazism and communism both effectively led to totalitarian regimes, restrictions of all kinds of freedoms, and abuse of their people by their own government, including mass murders. The huge difference however resides in their initial ideological intentions. I am a lot more sympathetic to the intentions of communism than the intentions of nazism. That being said, history should be taught with as much consensus and objectivity as possible and include abuses by all totalitarian regimes. How about an EU-wide 20th century history project where all historians agree with the facts ?

  41. Yo Lou

    really ? then why there a fascista regime in Hungary, for exemple ????

    • Paul Meijer

      There is no fascist regime in Hungary, it was only in ’44-’45 under German occupation. I think you should research more about politics and learn to write proper English before posting such comments.

  42. Yoann Baudry

    ce logo n est ni communiste ni naziste c est tou simplement un des nombreux logo des francs-macons

  43. Luis Soravilla

    Andwhat about the daily Capitalism Crimes we were staring for ages? The discussion is enormously tricky.

  44. Borj Delbai

    One has to defend the right to express opinions and publish them on the grounds that freedom of speech must be extended to all viewpoints, no matter how unpopular or fallacious. Historical events concern the historian and are not to be reduced to a judicial matter. Making it illegal to deny Nazi or communist crimes only inhibits the debate. It is historically significant, for example, whether six million Jews were gassed or whether four million Jews were gassed and two million died because of another cause, like sickness. If one challenges the accepted explanation, he could be charged with negationism, which, as stated, inhibits the debate and historical research.

  45. George Bariz

    YES,all european countries should adopt such laws.It is imperioslly neccesaire to do that if EU want the progress in est european former communist countries

  46. Urban Schrott

    Why would denying anything be illegal? If someone will want to deny the Earth is flat, because that’s the official story, we’d have to burn him at the stake? Oh, wait, we already did that in history…

    If someone wants to deny nazi crimes, please go ahead. Deny them. If I can then prove these crimes with evidence and facts, your denial fails. If someone wants to deny communist crimes, please go ahead. These too can be proven with evidence and facts. If someone wants to deny any scientific fact they bloody well like, please, go ahead. It is the job of science to prove them with evidence.

    Punishing anyone for believing whatever they like or denying whatever they like goes against the very idea of democracy, free speech, free thinking, human rights, etc. and is a step towards an orwellian “thought crime”.

    What I believe is really behind these bans is to prevent discussion of any controversial issues. All nazi crimes must be accepted as fact, and anyone doubting any detail, even if it can be scientifically questioned, is immediately in danger of being called a “nazi crime denying criminal”. And some suggest the same for communism. Who will make the “list of official nazi & communist crimes” which make you a “criminal” if you deny them? Which ones will be on it? Will all that will be on it completely and 100% scientifically correct, politicaly approved by all involved sides, or will there be room for propaganda, manipulation, distorting events, double interpretations, political interests, etc? Will it only involve crimes done by regimes officially, or also by individuals in the regimmes unoficially? Will it include only nazi & communist crimes, or all crimes against humanity, no matter who committed them. What about crimes by West-friendly dictators? What about those of fascists, democrats, capitalists, anarchists, socialists, christians, muslims, Europeans, Americans, Africans, etc… Will there be a detailed list of every crime in the world every committed by anyone that noone should ever deny?

    To me this looks like just another tool for propaganda and nothing else.

  47. Kris Babůrek

    #1 priority for EU should be Croatia, country that does NOT want to extradite communist murderer Perkovic who had killed Croatian immigrants in Germany in 1983. That tells you as well who still rules the country.

    • You don't know anything about Croatia

      You’re totally uninformed! Have you ever been in Croatia?? It seems not! If you had been here, you would realised that in most counties in power is right, neo-fascist party Croatian Democratic Union. Yes, the Social Democrats ruled at the state level, but the local government is mainly rulled by these right-wingers who have used “communist murderer Perkovic” during the Independence War for organizing and establishing a newly formed, Croatian Spy Agencies. Therefore, firstly find or ask for some info and then write nonsense.

  48. Georges DeLannoy de France

    Je pense que l’Union Europenne est un rgime fasciste qui n’aurait pas dplu au farouche partisan de la Grande Europe qu’tait Adolph Hitler. Si ce dernier n’avait pas t financ par les complexes amricano-germaniques, il serait rest un brailleur de fond de taverne munichoise et on aurait jamais entendu parler de lui. Enfin les archives dclassifies et les tudes d’historiens srieux ont prouv que le communisme russe s’est lui aussi install grce la finance amricaine. Alors vos leons, allez les donner ailleurs ;) P.S. En Europe, l’anglais n’est pas la langue majoritaire.

  49. Joesph

    Crimes of Communism are not as bad as crimes of the United States of America.

  50. Christos Mouzeviris

    I do not see the point of “banning” anything.. Ok we ban some weirdos of denying some facts of history.. Do we prevent them of stop believing them in that way? Do we prevent them from discussing their ideas with their circle of friends? The issue is not about “banning” rather educating or exposing the facts and let people take things from there.. Anybody who visited Krakow and the concentration camps and is right up in the head will realize the truth and the reality.. That I think is the best way of dealing with the issue.. If we ban things, it does not mean we eradicate them, we just push them to go underground.. And in my opinion it is better to confront any questions of doubts from young people especially who may have any questions on issues like this, with an open mind, patience and understanding and show to them what exactly happened, than banning any discussions or questions or even doubts on the issue..They will find a way to get answers on the internet or from circles that we have “banned” from the mainstream..And these may be the wrong answers.. I understand that the “banning” motivation comes s a wish to protect people that were the victims of such crimes, and stop any offense from happening.. But I haven’t met any person educated and right in their minds who deny these historic facts.. So if any victims of the Nazis or the Communists feel that by banning a person, from questioning or denying that people suffered under these regimes, that they are safe guarding the memory of those who perished or the truth, they need not worry.. The vast majority of people have not forgotten..

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Christos Mouzeviris
      WELL SAID!!

      PS: FTR ‘of right mind’ sounds better than ‘right in their minds’.

  51. Bastian

    In a free society no belief or opinion about the past whether from the left nor from the right should be illegal.
    Unfortunately in post WWII it started all with the EU again, when in the Nineties opinions about the Nazi past became threatened in individual countries with up to 20 years imprisonment.
    Now post-communist politicians suggest the same for the Stalinist era. As far as I know Hungary is one of those countries which has already introduced similar punishments for the right and the left historical opinions.
    This is the consequence when the EU establishment tries to introduce a benevolent dictatorship in its realm.
    A benevolent dictatorship is still a dictatorship.

  52. Unimatriks Ziro

    @Georges DeLannoy…Hitler et co. ont ete procedes et punis. les communistes ont echape (presque tous) la penatilte juste.

  53. Matthew Mikelson

    It’s not the crimes of communism.. it’s the crime of dictators.. they haven’t even bothered to try true communism yet.

  54. Gabriel Dostert

    Unimatrix: Romania has officially condemned communism. There are also ongoing trials over there… Your knowledge is flawed ( ;) ).

  55. Eugenija Vaitkevičiūtė

    To Dani Alexandrov: I agree. Only these ones, who have never seen what these “attractive theories”of communism meant / means/ could mean in practice…. could say, that no need to recognize that it was and it is crime. Kindest regards from Middle North Europe, Baltic States. Unfortunately, we know painfull practice of it, too well, here..

  56. Gabriel Dostert

    @Urban Schrott: unfortunately I have to disagree. The point in criminalising revisionists is to ensure genocide does not happen again. There will always be deluded fools to believe in revisionist theories, which are actual propaganda. The authors behind revisionist propaganda have the intention to take advantage of how gullible their readers can be … Which is a quite “criminal” intent !

  57. Mariana Manolova

    Is this a serious question?!EU countries should adopt such laws!!! We common European legislation to finish with thos once and for all!!! No doubt!

  58. Gabriel Dostert

    I agree with Matthew Nikelson. We are looking at the problem the wrong way. Although I would normally agree with this proposal, there is a flaw in this instance. There’s a huge difference between theoretical communism and the crimes committed in the Soviet Union. The confusion would be too great, and we might end up saying that all comunists, socialists, leftists in general are guilty, which is simply not the case and untrue … And isn’t preventing lies from becoming what is accepted as reality the very point of the proposal ? What we should condemn are dictatorship crimes, REGARDLESS OF THE IDEOLOGY in which they originated.

    Ne pas jeter le bb avec l’eau du bain en somme…

    Furthermore, regarding the nazis, there is nothing to be saved from an ideology that is based on ethnic clensing and the “superiority” of a “pure race” over the others … There is no such notion in communism… The two can not be compared in the first place.

  59. David Silva

    For many people, the elimination of communist parties is a dream and convenient. Because they want only the socialist and conservative parties legal, the same parties that create crisis and corruption along these decades. Of course, it will be better clean the communist parties from the Europe, thus, there would be no opposition or complaints by them.

  60. Mark Calvert-Foster

    I am British and am well-aware of the horrendous crimes committed in Ireland, Australia, India and the African colonies in the name of the British Empire. Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of the Empire? NO. Should it be illegal to highlight the evils of the British Empire NO….It’s a matter for scholarly debate not a matter for the magistrates court.

    We are supposed to be in a new enlightened time now that the Berlin wall has gone, but it seems some people are not happy with the idea of democracy. Democracy is not about just voting it’s about the freedom to debate, to challenge orthodoxy and authority. Please don’t let these ‘thought-crime’ laws onto the statute books.

  61. Profile photo of Taylor Charleston
    Taylor Charleston

    No matter our own personal beliefs or what is right and wrong we can’t stop people having their freedom of speech. We can that people deny crimes taken under the name of communism but we shouldn’t make their freedom of speech a crime. That in it’s self is fascistic.

  62. Eli Dirkx

    Instead of wondering whether it should be legal or illegal to deny/confirm anything being based upon certain ideologies, why not just open up free discussion about all these topics?
    There have been good things AND bad things from fascism, communism, socialism and all these different regimes based upon versions of these various ideologies.
    Why don’t we just discuss them like normal people?

    It’s about time we’ve matured enough to talk about these things like social beings, instead of trying to get behind some government ghost force to specify exactly what we should or shouldn’t say.

  63. Mikko U.

    “Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of communism?”
    The question seems off the mark. Instead the appropriate question should read as:
    “Should it be illegal to debate in a free and democratic society whether
    a) certain acts have taken place,
    and / or
    b) should these acts be illegal?”
    It is a categorical NO on both accounts. It most definitely should not be illegal to question these. It is stupifying we are even contemplating this. To deny diversity of opinion is to deny yourself progress and ability to learn. The key is to require justifications for the viewpoints presented, not to ban any outright. Do not judge beforehand – instead stay informed and use your ability to reason the case for yourself. It is only this way that the ridiculous will be seen as they are – ridiculous. Any legislation banning free speech is only required where educated and informed citizenry is not a desired state of affairs.

  64. catherine benning

    Are we speaking of political crime here? For it cannot be crime of an ideology. Communism is simply a name for collective economies. Such as Cuba and the founding state of Israel. Israel rose out of collectivism in the Kibbutz. It took it from a desert land to wealth, when those who sacrificed for it, took their life in their hands to build it. Cuba still has communism that gave its people a far better standard of life than they ever had under the US mafia capitalist system of Las Vegas gambling and prostitution as a way to survive. It has a health care that the US citizens go and ask to be cured from. Oh, yes, bet you didn’t know that. The only part of Cuba that rings the bell of evil is Guantanamo. That Capitalist torture chamber that keeps innocent men, none having been charged, for incarcerated eternity. Is there a communist equivalent? Put me straight if you know of one. As I don’t.

    Of course we could go around the world and see who and when the rulers of countries, on both side of the coin, do not stick to the premise of the doctrine, couldn’t we. But, I would say it is in the heart of the ruler and not in the idea of the method in economy that is the despot in these cases. The control freak, is the one who freedom of speech is seen as an anathema.

    As a little exercise go around all the countries and see where the worst atrocities take place, and why. Look at their economic policy and the satisfaction of the citizen and then you can judge where those who live with the most satisfaction are. Kingdoms and monarchies are the most offensive. They have no rights whatsoever.

    The big countries of China and Russia. If you had to ask for asylum which one would you choose. The USA and Europe. Now they are so fearful of the PC brigade you could only choose one of those if you felt you could live with the repression of thought, equal to that of the Chinese. Russia is a little less into the politically correct scenario, or, is it. I watch RT for the news as it is the one station that allows both sides of a debate and they certainly appear far more free of speech on social engineering than we have in the UK and Europe.

    Here is Michael Moore’s documentary on Cuba and health care, among many other things in Capitalist societies being compared to socialist countries. Take note, It is what they are trying to push on us here in the UK and Europe. As there is big money to be made in the medical business.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8NPXr25PsQ

    Now the politicians that generate murder and mayhem are not following a socialist philosophy are they? What they are doing is taking away the freedom that socialism or communism is designed to give. In exactly the same way the politicians who float Capitalism do. The Bush/Blair governments created horrendous genocide in countries not their own, all in the name of freedom and capitalism. Look at what they did to Iraq and the horror suffered by the people of that country from their wonderful notion of ‘Regime’ change. And are those responsible being charged with war crimes? No, not a word of it. In fact the Blair creature tours the world on a freebie as ‘peace’ envoy for the middle east. That area of the planet we see fall daily into further discontent and war. I would say TB should be carrying the title of ‘War’ envoy to the middle east. Far more fitting for such a Judas as he.

    Personally, I like the in between approach as you will see in this British documentary on the German way of life.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b038669g/Make_Me_a_German/

    • Limbidis Adrian

      “What they are doing is taking away the freedom that socialism or communism is designed to give.”
      Uuuu i love you :)

  65. Antinazi Archimedes

    Shall we report the past and present crimes of colonialist Europe or how EU countries support terrorists like Al Nusra and other terrorists with links to Al Qaeda?

  66. Rudi Špoljarec

    Of course it should be illegal to deny the crimes of communism. Participants of the crimes should be investigated on court . Anyway , it is the obligation , according to resolution of european parliament. Above that , all the participants who cooperated with ex-communist totalitarian regimes should be discharged out of public functions immediately ( politicians, journalists, members of local and state government etc.). Many of the countries of ex eastern european totalitarian regimes have done that allready , some countries still have to do it. The sooner , the better.

  67. diana

    communism is responsible for crimes against humanity just like nazism is . The problem is that in countries where communists ruled, there is still the stratum of former communst leaders, their children and their proteges. So how could they accept a law incriminating themselves. It’ll take may be another 20 years so that such a kind of law could come into force.

    • Limbidis Adrian

      I was born in 1983, this means that i didn’t ‘grow up” in the communist period nor i was a “communist protege or child”.
      And yet i am willing to recognize the IDEA they wanted to implement was good. It didn’t work because they made mistakes – they forgot about tyrants and the allure of power.
      But the idea was noble, equality among people.

      And eventually, may not now, maybe not in the next 100, or even 1000 years. but eventually that WILL BE humanity’s future.
      Nothing gets done while we are so divided. Space exploration, technological advancement, everything is strangled by money and corporate interests. Everything must make PROFIT first and serve humanity afterwards.

      We are so screwed our entire MORAL COMPASS is unbalanced. We value money over the simple things in life. We are living better than our parents and yet studies show we are less happier.
      We ar ruining our planet for profits, and while the EU’s actions ARE commendable they cannot oppose this system or do anything while they play by the system’s rules.
      I consider myself lucky to have experienced parts of communism, parts of transition and finally capitalism as a shinning beacon of hope, and then after 2008 the cold shower of what this system actually does.

  68. Limbidis Adrian

    No, basically this would strengthen the right-wing parties and shut down any critique against capitalism with accusation of being a ‘commie’.
    Was communism bad? Yes it was.
    But that doesn’t mean the Left should lie down and die to the Right wing maniacs who would turn Europe into the fascist USA.
    No worker rights , no unions – those are COMMUNIST organizations.
    No regulations – that would be anti capitalist and by proxy…COMMUNIST.
    No critique of capitalism and its excesses. No critique of this system that will RUIN us, all of us, the EU, the US, the world, all of it.
    No , no no, we can’t talk about that.
    We should be ‘afraid’.

    In the US the period where ANYONE who could be silenced with “communist” labels was called McCarthyism.
    A very dark period for the US.
    We should learn from their mistakes not repeat them!

  69. Urban Schrott

    @Vicente Silva Tavares, as long as we agree that that is only your opinion, we’re fine. :) Oh and, I wonder why you conveniently forgot to mention the genocide of 50-100 millions of native Americans by the Spanish and Portugese :) So let’s ask also “Should it be forbidden to deny the crimes of European colonialists?”

  70. Urban Schrott

    @Vicente Silva Tavares, as long as we agree that is only your opinion, we’re fine. :) Oh and I wonder why you conveniently forgot to mention the genocide of millions of native Americans by the Spanish and Portugese :) So let’s ask also “Should it be forbidden to deny the crimes of European colonialists?”

  71. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    Don’t confuse stalinism with communism or socialism! Stalin was a cruel dictator, similar with a typical Latin one.
    Now if communism is worst system of goverment than parliamentary democracy, or that socialism is worst economic system than capitalism, that’s an other issue.

  72. Vicente Silva Tavares

    Urban Schrott, if you need to go to the Middle Ages to attack me, for “God’ sake” you are lacking arguments. Why stop on the Iberian colonialism? Where are the countries with less natives in American continent? In the South or in the North? British have been more efficient in killing the native population? Or about Australia? Where were given to aborigines blankets infected with tuberculosis and other illnesses? And NZ? Why not to speak about Gengis Khan who also impose his rule with terror? Or about the Bantus that almost erased from Africa the Khoi San and just finished off with Hottentots? The question was about recent times, and of course, Hitler, Stalin and Mao Tse Tung and Pol Pot where the most mass murders.

  73. Vicente Silva Tavares

    Nikolaos Sotirelis can you indeed separate Stalin from the system? If you could, than Stalinism was a particular experience of Russia, not repeatable on other countries. Now explain me why Mao Zedong (Mao Tse Tung) killed hundred of millions, Pol Pot killed also a few millions, and so on? The communism is a secular religion with intolerance (as all religions) to divergence and tend to kill any shadow of unorthodoxy and even innocent people to create an environment of terror so people are afraid to think by their own minds. And please, do not compare Stalin with a Latin dictator. Even Videla or Pinochet killed a few thousand people not millions as the communist dictators have done.

  74. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    Vicente it’s like judging Christianism from the actions of Inquisition or of the pope Borgia. Or Islam from the actions of fanatics. Or capitalism from its last defence the Chounta.
    I’m not saying that communism is a better system from bourgeois democracy. In contrary… I probably support the opposite!
    But even so you can’t blame a system and much more an ideology from some opportunicists’ massive crimes. You judge it from its purpose and its logic.

  75. Yannis Perrotis

    There should be no limitation in the expression of opinion. At the same time lying and slandering should be illegal.

  76. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    Don’t forget Vicente that fasism, nazism and last dictatorships in Europe, were extreme expressions of the capitalism. For instance, dictatorship in Greece, but even in Spain, probably in Portugal too, were a result of the capitalists’ fear, that they’ll lose the power.
    You wouldn’t judge capitalism from those dictatorships! Would you?

    • Limbidis Adrian

      not trying to inflame thing but there are sources who claim that the capitalists used Hitler as a ‘counter” to rising communist movement due to ( surprise surprise ) worker anger at austerity.
      European leaders…are you listening? You should.
      New Dawn, BNP, UKIP Front National and the other right wing nuts are out there.
      As for the Left, it’s not as strong as it was to oppose them.

      This ‘austerity” ( to feed the rich ) needs to end before we get a DISASTER here.

  77. Nassos Perrotis

    The issues are free speech and education. History is full of crimes in the name of religion, political belief and national/ethnic/racial identity. We should know history and the forces that have shaped it. Time gives us the necessary distance that allows for objective views – until then it is our duty to preserve true accounts of the facts.

  78. Vicente Silva Tavares

    Nikolaos, the seeds are there. In both systems. As somebody said and I do not remember now, the major point in democracy is how we control politicians. Look at the lesson of Socrates. As a Greek you should know.

  79. Nikolaos Sotirelis

    I agree Vicente, but I should add, that the seeds aren’t hidden just in systems and ideologies but in the darkest sides of human soul. The vanity of power unfortunately, rules the human mind and heart!
    Nice talking to you again!

  80. Bava Vava

    Yes, like nazism, crimes of communism was made by stupid liders. Is PPE a nazist party like romanian PDL ?

    • Limbidis Adrian

      The notions of “left” and ‘right” do not apply to Romania.
      PDL is center-right if you want to make a comparisson.

      The most “nazi-like” party in Romania is teh “New Right” movement an ultranationalist hate group and the quasi xenophobic ( although they do have a point at times ) PRM.

  81. Bastian

    “The Yugoslav Communism which was the best and the most liberal.”

    Really?

    At least during WWII and the years after it Tito’s Communist regime belonged to the most murderous the world has ever seen. Up to 500.000 unarmed civilians, including families with children have been masacred in savage ways unknown from any other European regime.
    Officially there are about 1600 mass graves from that post WWII period in Slovenia and Croatia alone.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_graves_in_Slovenia

  82. diana

    Mihail, communism regime in Bulgaria was like every other totalitarian regime with all the lack of free speech, disinformation, the state security services that controlled the life of citizens. People were brainwashed all the time. Can you tell that today in North Korea they live well? If you think so, so you can say that communism was not bad.

  83. Paul X

    While we are hosting a debate about freedom of speech, why is there so much fuss being made about Yelena Isinbayeva’s comments on homosexuality?

    Why are people not allowed to express their opinions on gays? No matter how much politically correct pressure there is, there are people in this world who will never accept it as normal, get over it and accept it

  84. Profile photo of Jutta_I
    Jutta_I

    Without having read the whole debate, I just want to drop in my opinion: As soon as a political party attacks human rights it should be forbidden.
    Crimes against humanity must not be denied, no matter by which party they were done.

  85. Marcel

    In my viewpoint, it should be illegal to deny that the EU is undemocratic and designed to undermine and ultimately destroy national democracies.

    • Profile photo of Jutta_I
      Jutta_I

      The question was: “Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of communism?”

  86. XYZ

    It was not the crimes of “communists” or even “socialists” ist was a new form of dictature under the stealthcape of communism also known as STALINISM / MAOISM / JUCHE IDEOLOGY .

  87. Profile photo of Jutta_I
    Jutta_I

    I think, it’s less the question to charge them, I’m afraid you’re right, these people gone.
    But you could charge those who deny that crimes in the name of communism never happened. You could charge those who deny that people were killed, lost their human dignity, their freedom of speech, their freedom to go where they wanted to go etc. in the name of communism.

  88. James Kirk

    Which communism ? the communism which was never able to exist because the moment anyone tried it, the ‘free countries of the world’ attacked and bombed them to hell ? like what they did to russia in 1918-19 ? british, usa and 17 more countries. they even used poison gas on the people to suppress them and reinstall aristocracy.

    naturally the experiment of communism ended asap because russia had to mobilize an army and arm itself to defend from the ‘free countries of the world’. which ended the practice of communism, enacting state capitalism instead. state capitalism is incidentally THE system of usa, uk and many other ‘free’ countries. just it is more relaxed in there. the system that ended up in russia in just a decade was called stalinism. NOT communism.

    so long story short – THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A COMMUNIST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD BECAUSE THE MOMENT YOU ATTEMPT IT SOME COUNTRIES COME AND BOMB YOU TO STONE AGE.

    talking about denying the crimes of nonexistent things is outright morondom.

  89. Jovan Ivosevic

    “Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. This article shall not prevent States from requiring the licensing of broadcasting, television or cinema enterprises.” Article 10, European Convention of Human Rights.

    Being wrong and even repulsive in your politics cannot trump this right. Same goes for those who deny Nazi crimes.

  90. George Bariz

    Should be a duty…should be legal…communism and Nazism are the same…the diference is that the communism has’t been punised

  91. Brieuc Michiels

    Capitalism or communism, it’s the same ^^
    In capitalism, it’s all for the corporation (or capital) and nothing left for citizen. In communism, all for the state nothing left for the citizen.

  92. Alec Derk

    YES ! no difference between Hitler and Stalin – i was personally affected by the crimes of communism. No one talks about those crimes!!!!!!! WHY???????

  93. Spyros Kouvoussis

    The victims of stalinism were communists like trotsky. How can you blame the victims for the crimes someone elsecommited???

  94. Davey Brown

    It should be illegal to deny the crimes of the EU such as cultural genocide and anti English race hate policies.

  95. MandyandPj Leneghan

    Absolutely NOT, whilst it did happen, opinion and thoughts should NOT be illegal. This is why we are in this mess in the first place……social engineering and bloody hell, complaining about totalitarianism and then suggest that free thinking be made illegal. If you happen to make it illegal, what are you going to do? exterminate those that do not comply? I want to know more about that period, including the nazi days BUT people are too afraid to talk openly about it because, in some EU nations…it is illegal to question the established version…….what are we hiding folks?…….pj

  96. Kay-Michael Dankl

    No – according to that logic the denial of any mass murder would have to be criminalized.

    The key difference is that there is no threat of political violence coming from pro-Stalinist groups in Europe, wehreas neo-Nazi groups do pose a very real threat to people and societies.

  97. Yo Lou

    deny any crime (but that happenned, not invented) should be crime everywhere !!!!!!!! truth and transparency above all things

  98. Natasa Jevtovic

    Historical research and analysis should never suffer from censorship. I don’t believe people should be prosecuted for denying the crimes of communism, but I believe we should speak of these crimes more often, in order to remember and never let the history repeat itself.

    • Gian Marco Mele

      Centuries of exploitation, colonialism etc….no remembrance? That is very unfair dear Europe!

  99. Antreas Televantos

    No difference between the crimes against humanity!! It should be illegal to deny the crimes held in the name of communism

  100. Diana M Dian

    Bulgaria is under Mafia Government, taken the power with forgery and manipulations! All of the rulling parties now since May 2013 are created by the old communistic regime! Red Mafia is ruliing like a Trajon Horse in EU! When Europe will open the eyes and see the truth and the reality?…now they have created a new right called it ‘reforming block” ..same procedure, as in 1989, if there will be voting, apperantly, they will again in power..We never have a chance for democracy! Never! Europe has to put in isolation this mafia red government rullled by Kremlin!..p.s. Bulgaria is under commmunist genocide since 69 years!

  101. Profile photo of Kruno Stjepanović
    Kruno Stjepanović

    Freedom of speech should be protected. It’s crucial for the survival of liberal democratic regimes. However, in political sphere, political parties and individuals should be denied particiaption in political arena if denying any kind of historically proven crimes against the humanity, such as Nazism AND communism (stalinism, titoism, maoism etc.). Therefore, on social level, no, it should not be illegal to say what you wanna say, but on the state’s level, some rules should be implemented to protect the Constitution and dignity of citizens.

  102. ShpEndi Sulçe

    No. We shouldn’t confuse communism as an ideology, with the dictatorships that only used its name.

  103. Peter Harrison

    It’s illegal to deny the crimes of fascism so why not make it illegal to deny the crimes of communism too?

  104. Giorgos Tsolakis

    the crimes of communism are: 8 hours work, social wealthfare and equality. Lenin said once ”there is not such a thing communism is bad there is only bad communists” The answer is of course is not illegal

  105. Jeroen De Mets

    The best way to remember the victims of communism is to respect our fundamental freedoms. Using the tactics of Stalinism – banning speech – to honour its victims is absurd.

  106. Urban Schrott

    What is your agenda with the same question that you already asked on August 12th? And both times you only use the symbol of Communism and no symbols of Naziism and Fascism for your post. Hinting something perhaps?

    Why would denying anything be illegal? If someone will want to deny the Earth is flat, because that’s the official story, we’d have to burn him at the stake? Oh, wait, we already did that in history…

    If someone wants to deny nazi crimes, please go ahead. Deny them. If I can then prove these crimes with evidence and facts, your denial fails. If someone wants to deny communist crimes, please go ahead. These too can be proven with evidence and facts. If someone wants to deny any scientific fact they bloody well like, please, go ahead. It is the job of science to prove them with evidence.

    Punishing anyone for believing whatever they like or denying whatever they like goes against the very idea of democracy, free speech, free thinking, human rights, etc. and is a step towards an orwellian “thought crime”.

  107. Urban Schrott

    What I believe is really behind these bans is to prevent discussion of any controversial issues. All nazi crimes must be accepted as fact, and anyone doubting any detail, even if it can be scientifically questioned, is immediately in danger of being called a “nazi crime denying criminal”. And some suggest the same for communism. Who will make the “list of official nazi & communist crimes” which make you a “criminal” if you deny them? Which ones will be on it? Will all that will be on it completely and 100% scientifically correct, politicaly approved by all involved sides, or will there be room for propaganda, manipulation, distorting events, double interpretations, political interests, etc? Will it only involve crimes done by regimes officially, or also by individuals in the regimmes unoficially? Will it include only nazi & communist crimes, or all crimes against humanity, no matter who committed them. What about crimes by West-friendly dictators? What about those of fascists, democrats, capitalists, anarchists, socialists, christians, muslims, Europeans, Americans, Africans, etc… Will there be a detailed list of every crime in the world every committed by anyone that noone should ever deny?

    To me this looks like just another tool for propaganda and nothing else.

  108. Joesph

    The crimes of the democratic and capitalistic states are far bigger than the crimes of the Communism? If we are to make the crimes of the Communism illegal, then we should also make the crimes of Capitalism illegal?

    • Gian Marco Mele

      Perfectly right

  109. Kiril Stoyanov

    I live in Bulgaria. I was born in the darkest ages of the communism and my first 20 years were spent in the comunist’s terror. All was forbiden – to read foreign literature, to watch foreign TVs, to travel.. It was forbidden to think and to talk. It was obligatory to be thankfiul to our dictator Zhivkov. An was normal to be imprisoned if you dont love enough the dictator. Unfortunately my country is in the communism again. Now in another form – as coalition between comunists and nationalsocialists. And they are trying to put us in the dark ages again. The comunism is not just a criminal dictatorship. The comunism is dangerous disease. It is cancer of the nation. I hope we will cure this cancer but believe me, its is very difficult to do.

    • Gabriel

      Why are you lying?

  110. Gian Marco Mele

    NO. It should’nt it be illegal to deny the crimes of communist regimes because the question does not indicate what kind of crimes should be included. Communism ideology itself does not foreseen any crime and was born for giving workers and exploited people a chance for a better life, after centuries of CRIMES, having the capitalistic organization as its last form of domination. Soviet Union and its allied had been fully part of international community 1948-1991. During that period our democracies were experiencing crimes (in Italy the State itself fostered terrorism) that had been denied in the name of the “Cold War”. Everything had happened 1948-91 should be called Cold War crime, not linked to any ideology but just to power and geopolitics. The question is not clear enough

  111. Alex Semiserios

    I don’t know if it should be illegal. Imposing something on people doesn’t guarantee that they will accept it. What should be done is educate people about the facts. And the facts themselves offer irrefutable proof of the immense human tragedies that have unfolded in the pursuit of this pseudo-biblical Utopia on Earth.

  112. Samo Košmrlj

    one of our historians put it nicely: the biggest “anti-communists” in europe are the countries that collaborated with nazism. of course it should be illegal to deny crimes of communism, but lets first deal with italy and austria, those two countries portrait themselves as victims of WW2 but in fact they did crimes by their own initiative. winston churchill, for example, one of the biggest anti communists of all times fought against fascism and nazism, but was allied with soviet union. and he supported tito’s partisans of yugoslavia, who fought against collaborants and fascists.

  113. Sunny Cvitkovic Anderson

    YES YES YES, I live in the country INFESTED with mass communist murderers in public life. Streets, squares, books that glorify mass murders and “explain” that they NEEDED to get EVEN and that is OK! They celebrate Dictator Tito and other “heroes” that killed over 300 000 UNARMED people and for 50 years were KILLING, jailing for 10 years for writing a critical book or a poem, all their possessions were confiscated. CROATIA is INFESTED with COMMUNISTS!

  114. Sunny Cvitkovic Anderson

    Alex Semiserios, they are communists, they believe ONLY in their ideology! It is impossible to explain anything to these people, I have tried!

  115. Sunny Cvitkovic Anderson

    Samo Ko?mrlj, so based on your comment, communist should be allowed to kill as many people as they wanted. Not just the leadership of the fascist or nazis, but everyday people because they were against communists? Nice? Do you kill kittens in your spare time, for fun! Do they look like nazis or fascist to you?

    • Samo Kosmrlj

      I think you misunderstood my comment. I said that of course, the crimes of communists are to be condemned, but first lets clear up one thing: the anti-communism of people nowadays is in most cases poorly disguised populism for one’s own benefit. Take italy for example, their children dont even learn about crimes of the fascist regime. however they have a national holiday of remembering the victims of foibe. Or take your beloved croatia for example, and almost million of victims of ustasha. Of course for you they are probably heroes because they were killing serbs and bosniaks, but they directly provoked tito’s revenge after the war. So the three hundred thousands of murderers of the innocents << (is way less than) eight hundred thousand innocents, killed just because they were born in the wrong territory. Lets be fair, shall we?

  116. Elpida

    Freedom of speech is one of the highest values that we should protect. It is wrong however to simplify this matter so much that we judge communism the same with the extreme right and Nazi parties. Communists are to blame for severe crimes . But there is nothing in their philosophy against humanity. However, the extreme right (Nazi kind of party) has in its philosophy racism and other hateful dogmas which are against human rights, and that is an issue that needs to be taken into consideration. I believe that a party should be illegal when its practice or ideas are against human rights, or when it is involved in illegal actions, such as abusing people.

  117. George Danieldsg

    Nazism is the theory of modern barbarism.Communism is the political system to suceed capitalism.Stalinism and its crimes is about the crimes of any other dictaror or political leader all over the world.

  118. Roman Hromyk

    most definitely it should. otherwise it’s a political debate over tons of victims.

  119. Phạm Lê Quốc Việt

    such a law should be adopted in european countries. I have lived for 25 year under communist regime in VietNam, Why I have to leave for Europe . Not only for studying but also for escaping from such a regime. Communists can change their internal color but they never change their nature. Please remember this

  120. Jovan Ivosevic

    Such a law would be illegal, as are laws which criminalize denial of Nazism, under Article 10 of the European Convention of Human Rights which guarantee freedom of speech and expression.

    However it is unacceptable to lump Nazism and Communism under the same banner. The successors to Marx’s theory in the East did create an extreme form of such a regime, which led to Stalinism, murder, imprisonment of people for no grounds, etc. That is and should always be worthy of condemnation. However, the story of Communism in Western Europe is quite different. In the late 19th century, Marxist theory was reinterpreted to be a democratic fight for a socialist society and about fifty years later when capitalism in the West seem guaranteed to be entrenched in the American sphere of influence during the Cold War, it became a movement for the guarantees of socioeconomic dignity and the modern welfare state. Without Communism, some of the most favorable aspects of Western European societies never get created, such as union membership, social rights, economic redistribution, anti-poverty measures, etc. Nazism always was and will be an ideology whose sole purpose was the racial superiority of one group of people over another with absolutely nothing to redeem it.

  121. MandyandPj Leneghan

    Communism is a VALID economic model and , as such, it cannot kill…..anyone. HOWEVER, the ruling and political classes can and have murdered MILLIONS, 100s of MILLIONS and are doing so today, whether they call themselves democrats, communists, fascists, national socialists, capitalists……it does not matter, ALL killings have been and are committed by the ruling and political classes.

    That is the fact of it.

    The EU, whilst I note some are calling communist, some fascist……. however, I think that that is not correct, today’s ruling and political classes owe allegiance to no ideal (ideology), whether that be capitalism/communism/fascism but only to themselves and those that they serve, mafia capitalism, global cabals and their ilk. We are mere prisoners within an empire of organised crime……..pj

  122. Jovan Ivosevic

    Leneghan, communism as an economic model is one of the most tested models in the history of the modern world, and one with the highest rate of economic failure. Of all the things Communism is, economically successful is not one of them.

  123. Ana Georgieva

    The question reminds me very much of a tipical socialist way of thinking. Deny, deny, deny….punish,punish,punish…

  124. Profile photo of Catalin-Vasile
    Catalin-Vasile

    Between the crimes of the Nazi regime and the crimes of the Communist regimes there is not difference than the period of time the people had to endure the atrocities! It is important to put the denial of the Communist regimes crimes on the same level with the Nazi ones when comes about the freedom of speech!
    Now, about the freedom of speech: it doesn’t seem ridiculous to you to speek about the freedom of spech while talking about such subjects is banned!This is true Nazi/Communist law: not being allowed to speak on a subject, making it a tabu!

  125. Ana Georgieva

    Someones way of thinking can not be illegal, if it is accepted as illegal you are not part of a democratic society.

  126. Diaconu George Razvan

    crimes of comunism should not be treated different from crimes of nazism!so yes , it should be illegal to deny them!as an ecomonic model , if it is a failure or not , it depends how you look at it.in Romania this is a topic that revived lately in the mainstream media .

  127. Jonathan Aaron Aureliano MacGiollachomhgaill

    It should not be illegal to deny crimes, it doesn’t make the fact of the crimes disappear, it encourages proper engagement, historical research and open debates. What would we do with people who deny the crimes? Lock them up? Ostracise them? If we want to life in a free democracy we can’t just try to exclude opinions or facts that we do not like.

  128. Markel Ruiz Ruiz

    Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of Capitalism? It has cost much more million lifes… Just sayin’ ;)

  129. Bogdan Cristea

    Censorship and thought-police should be illegal in the EU! Sending people to prison because they happen to disagree with an officially sanctioned version of history is a breach of fundamental human rights and basic freedom of thought and speech. It is a crime in and of itself and a method heavily employed by all totalitarian regimes, be they communist, fascist or any other kind! In a free, democratic Europe everyone should be allowed to think and speak freely, regardless how controversial their viewpoints are! Otherwise what would be the difference between today’s Europe and the Europe of 20th century totalitarianism?

  130. Alex Avram-Rusu

    Everyone should have the right to deny what he wants. That’s democracy. You have to accept that people will have different opinions. Any person with a brain knows that communism or fascism or any other ideology that propagates violence and dictatorship is wrong…

  131. Markel Ruiz Ruiz

    I agree, though in your list of ideologies that “propagate violence and dictatorship” and that are wrong, apart from “communism” and “fascism”, “capitalism” is missing… the 3 of them have caused millions of deaths (the last one the most…) ;)

  132. Louise Mulholland

    Communism is a political theory like socialism…Nazism was a political event with no theory ..should it be against the law to deny the crimes of capitalism? The crimes of stalin are another thing…censorship should be illegal …lying should be immoral

  133. Miguel Cabrita

    Everyone should speak out what they think without censorship. Thats a fundamental thought of any woman or man defending democracy.

  134. Stephane Czajkowski

    I think we don’t have to mistake Stalin’s dictatorship for the theory of communism. On paper, communism has great ideas for the mankind. To the contrary, the theory of fascism is based on racism, which is not acceptable. Moreover, I think that capitalism has also its failings: high criminality, social inequities, destruction of the natural environnement. I guess that the good system is yet to invent.

  135. Gabriel

    Well, in that case at least half the population of Romania should go to prison, because that’s the percentage of people thinking and answering in polls that they were better off in communism. Probably even more of them think so but are afraid to answer. Actually, they should ask in polls whether the current regime in my country is criminal or not, they might have a surprise (not reffering to one government or another, but to the whole thing that happened since 1989).
    Also, the real size of the crimes of the communist regime in Romania is not really known. There is a report by a comission led by Vladimir Tismăneanu, but it is politicized, unscientific and has very little credibility, being criticized even by some of the comission members.
    It would be absurd to deny that communists comitted crimes. But there are also reports that the number of people actually killed by the communist regime in Romania over the years amounts to a few thousands people.
    I remember there was talk of a report like that issued by the secret service early in the ninteen nineties, quickly retired because it didn’t incriminate enough the communist regime.
    In my opinion, this anticommunist hysteria is part of a far right revanchist trend in Eastern Europe, where incriminating communist regimes goes hand in hand with the rehabilitation of fascism.
    In countries like Hungary and Romania, fascist figures are being rehabilitated, praised not by marginals but by mainstream press as well as politicians.
    For instance, the president of Romania declared former king Michael of Romania a traitor because he “surrendered” the nation to the Russians on August 23rd 1944, when Romania left the Axis. In the same interview, he absolved the dictator Antonescu for the involvement in the invasion of the Soviet Union, because we had an ally (Nazi Germany).
    So, basically, he condemned Romania’s leaving the Axis in 1944 and approved Romania’s alliance with Nazi Germany in 1941, all in one blow.
    If this isn’t fascist revanchism, I don’t know what is.
    No need to mention that this very same president condemned the communist regime in the Parliament.
    In Eastern Europe, history is being rewritten. According to the new history, the Soviet Union was the bad guy and Nazi Germany was the good guy in WWII. Let’s keep in mind that many nations in this part of the world were allies of Nazi Germany and lost the war together with it. The Allies were reprezented in this part of the world not by US and Britain, but by the Russians. They were the enemy.
    Communism was the enemy and fascism was OK. Things seem to be going back the way they were.
    Also, in Romania, many of the victims of the communist crimes were former fascists.
    Courts in France sentenced 6,763 people to death for collaborating with nazis. Also, arround 10000 people in France suffered summary executions for the same reason after liberations.
    If the secret service report I mentioned above is right, the communist regime in Romania killed less people (around 5000). Of which many really were nazis.

  136. Claudio Cucconi

    point out a difference: in fascist regimes it’s ordinary matter…being fascism equal to murder and torture and crime etc…..in “soi dicent” communist countries there may be criminal leaders committing crimes…that’s the differrence!!!!!

    • Gabriel

      You are right. Equating fascism with communism is one of the greatest lies of our times. It comes from both far right propaganda and the hate, more or less justified, from people who suffered during the communist regimes. Note that not all of those who suffered were wronged by the regime. For instance, I don’t see former nazis as victims, even if they did suffer. France treated collaborators far harsher than communists did in Romania, and de Gaulle regime isn’t criminal, as far as I know.
      I can understand and empathize with people who were genuinely wronged by the communists. It’s understandable that, from where they stand, communism is the same with fascism. Nevertheless, there are a lot of people who don’t have any real ground to hate communism. I met people who actually complained about being persecuted for mere suffering border controls or for laws agains smuggling goods.
      To forbid the denial of crimes you must first prove them and at least get the facts straight.
      In Romania, estimations range from a few thousands dead to millions. For instance, Tismăneanu report claims 2 million victims. The number would be ludicrous if it refered to killings. That’s almost 10% of the population in 1989, you’d think we would’ve noticed if that amount of people disappeared from among us.
      Is there need to remind people that in 1989, there were reports of 60000 people killed in the revolution, but they only turned out to be 1000 or so? Moreover, most of them were killed after Ceausescu fled.
      The 2 million victims claim might be more credible if it refered to any kind of victimization, ranging from fines, confiscation of property and expulsion from universities, to execution.
      So, before discussing about the legality of denying communist crimes, we should seriously discuss the communist crimes. And get the facts straight, helped by unbiased historians and real scientific work.
      How do we define crimes? Is a fine or a confiscation a crime? Or an expulsion from university?

  137. Тодор Николов

    Communism is past maybe without future or with chance to back like in the past… The ending of World war 2 is the ending of communism in East Europe and Cold war with falling of Soviet Union. Some people in my country still think communism was better from democracy in some specific ways but sometimes I think the people miss bad sides or the cruely things from communism… Communism is one big part of the history of Europe, East Europe (that include some European Union-members)…

  138. Beny Simko

    No, it should be spoken about as openly and often as possible, as you can see from some of the previous comments, there are still human beings walking on this planet that believe in communism in spite of its monstrous historical records.

  139. Tamás Heizler

    Now in Hungary it’s illegal to deny the crimes of both nazis and communists. I understand the reason behind these laws, however I think freedom of speech should be above all.
    My opinion is that the punishment of the denial of any nazi or communist crimes should be punished by withdrawing the denier’s diploma if (s)he has it in history. However if (s)he doesn’t have diploma in history, then it absolutely doesn’t matter what (s)he says (lies) about history.
    I think imprisonment just creates martyrs for these neo-nazi and neo-communist theories so that imprisonment is counter-productive. Withdrawing diploma can be disincentive.

  140. Miguel Veríssimo

    Communism as Nazism or Fascism had its time in history – the implementation of Industrial Age as development model… Mainly focusing the population alignment with production discipline and factory’s working demands.
    Being part of history, can’t deny it or hide it… Doing so is to castrate our identity.
    But there’s an important issue here. Development is a time machine. Other countries are now passing through the same distortions that west had in the last century! Prevention and pedagogy from former industrial countries must be in order to help this countries not to commit the same errors… So, the answer is to open debate, not to close it…

  141. Emmanuel RODARY

    Another question that can not be separate from the initial one : Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of anti-communism ?

    Many crimes have been made ​​in the name of communism, many crimes have been made ​​in the name of anti-communism and it seems strange that the question of deny of communism crimes is often coming back while nobody speaks of the other side?

    Are there “good victims” of crimes and… amnesia ?

  142. Davor

    Here in Croatia,in part due to the defensive war of 1991-1995 lustration of communist cadres and murderers was not carried out.Without delving into the details,from May 1945 to Sept. 1945 the communists murdered,by conservative estimate,at least 150 thousand Croatian POWs and civilians.Most of the killings took part in Slovenia where thus far 650 mass graves have been discovered.Slovenian historians estimate that perhaps as many as 200 thousand people were killed in Slovenia alone,most of them Croats,during this period.Recently in Zagreb the orchestrator of the worst massacre in Croatia (the Macelj woods,where an estimated 11 thousand people were killed in a little over a week),Stjepan Hršak,died in his mansion.Thus far in Croatia and elsewhere in Europe,no communists have been called to account for genocide,autogenocide,crimes against humanity,culturocide,etc.This is for the most part due to the left,which has held the political,social and cultural high ground since WW II and has benn actively involved in the cover-up of communist crimes.The average European is for the most part a product of social engineering and has been brainwashed for decades.

  143. Red Saga

    A free country is where one is free to do anything they want except what they are forbidden to do.

  144. Red Saga

    Capitalists have an overwhelming fear that the population will find out communism is a better system than capitalism.

  145. Red Saga

    WHILE WE’RE ON THE SUBJECT OF CRIME,HOW ABOUT CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY? How about the USA’s crimes. 150,000 dead from the second attack on Iraq, 10,000 in the first attack; 6,000 Americans in Iraq; 600,000 in Laos/Cambodia; two million in Vietnam; 55,000 Americans in Vietnam, 30,000 civilians in Nicaragua, dead yet to be counted in Afganistan; how many dead in Korea, Panama, Grenada, Somalia, Kosovo? Sanctions on Iraq between our two wars killed 600,000 children. The world must tremble at who is next to be attacked by this massive military might which is run by mad-men.

  146. Profile photo of Timo
    Timo

    This Topic is way to ridicolous to be taken seriously. What about the Crimes of our Church? Who finally bans Christianity? The Warcrimes the US caused in the last 60 years? Guess we have to ban Capitalists and Democracy too.

  147. Ana Georgieva

    And what are those crimes “democrats”? What about the crimes of “democrats”, for example the attom bomb in Hiroshima? Or the genoside in Syria, Lybia etc.????

  148. Christos Karkaboulias

    Stop bullshitting us stupid, fucked up and dishonest Europe. What “freedom of speech”? Please find another way to entertain us…

  149. Tsvetanka Boeva

    Well, the crimes of the nazism are not denied. Why some people try to deny the crimes of the communism? They are not less monstrous and have destroyed the lives of many people. Yet some people continue to rant what a great haven communism was… Yes, it should be illegal!

  150. Alex Sekkpefb

    Yes, all kind of dictatorships that used “terror bodies” should be condemned for all the crimes they engaged in.

  151. Gonzalo FS

    Nop. And the wars of capitalism? Those moved by petrol or money? Lying international community like in irak? war is a war… the base of communism is good the leader of it its another thing much diferent…

  152. Teresa Silva

    Such as all the crimes commited throughout history! And the young generation should be led into the study of history and philosophie and in doing so, the future decidors of Europe would be prepared to understand, respect and protect all men and ideals!

  153. Aleksejs Miščuks

    Even if communist regime was inhumane I don’t think that censorship of other opinions will really benefit freedom of speech. This also concerns nazi regime – clearly it was evil, but then again – what about the genocide of native Americans by European colonists? Why don’t we make a law about that? Or a law that makes it criminal to deny the fault of medieval scandinavians killing Christians & burning churches?No, not good, was too long ago? So that means that some crimes of the past should be condemned more than others only because their “terms of usage” haven’t ran out?That’s absurd, imo.

  154. Arkadi Sharkov

    Every totalitarian ideology including Nationalism should be considered as a crime against humanity.

  155. Bernd

    I think we should tackle the problem starting from a matter of ideology. While nationalsocialism and fascism (under a wider approach) refers to the deeds of specific regimes and government, communism tracks its origins from the ideas of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, not to mention the earlier socialist ideologues, ideas which do not openly embrace hatred against an ethnic group or whatever. If we are to condemn an idea for the deeds of those who said to be socialist or communist, although they diverged from what Marx and his famous friends wrote, then we should also outlaw Christianity, the USA, Capitalism and Democracy. These are ideas which do not directly imply violence and mass murder. Let’s just take action against those who refer to worldwide recognised criminal regimes, not agaimst ideas.

  156. Luka Parac

    Either ban both or let both freely be spoken.. You can’t ban fascist symbols and speeches, but allow communist propaganda. Two evils, different sides of a medal.

  157. Vladimir Karic

    The question is wrong. It’s not the crimes of communism , but the crimes of it’s formal leaders.
    Compare it to the liberal ideoly or democracy. Without question we all recognize that each of us should be free end enjoy that freedom. Does it mean that western democracy if holy? No. The west did a lot of harm to it’s own people and people around the world. It’s not only fysical crime, but economic crime as well. The west has been good to commit crimes, but it’s difficult for ordinary people to see it, because it has been done through policy, legitime policy. The west has Always been smart at doing so, read the shock doctrine of Naomi klein.
    But should we condemn democracy as hole? No, because the Idea’s are noble it’s the output that sometimes goes wrong because of individual policy idea’s and egoism. Policy makers should be blamed, not freedom and liberty.

    Same with communism, you may or may not like it, but the idea of marxism was a call for more humanism ( working conditions) and equality. What has been put in practise by the Sovjet Union and other communist parties through the world has notting , almost notihing to do with the essence of equality and freedom for workers.

    So Yes, the formal leaders and policy makers should be blamed for all those unhumna crimes, but the idea of equality ( understud in its context of the 19 century) shouldn’t.

    Also you can’t compare liberal democracy and communism with fascisme. The first two call fro freedom, rights for all, equality, workers rights, self-determination …. ( although it’s not Always the practice , the ideas are noble)
    But fascisme calls for discimination, violance, domination over others en eventually for crimes to be committed against other people.

  158. Ivan Zhbantov

    The denying of the crimes of communism would be equal to denying the crimes of the NAZI’s

  159. Thomas Psimmas

    The denial of a crime (either in the name of fascism either in the name of communism either in the name of Western democracy) is not a crime. Each democratic society has not any right to penalize each person’s morale. As far as the comparison between fascism and communism is concerned, I believe that the comparison must be set between fascism as an ideology and Stalin. Communism has, as an ideology, a completely different orientation in relation to the fascism (communism is, according to Marx’s works, an ideology with humane and international characteristics and unfortunately the socialist countries were authoritarian regimes and did not put any principle of socialism (especially Stalin, Mao, Ceausescu). On the contrary, fascism brought about 50 million dead people all over the world during the Second World War and Hitler implemented all fascism principles (sovereignty of Aryan race, mass killing of people because of nationality, colour, sexual orientation or disability)… In conclusion, the identification of Hitler with Stalin and Mao is totally true, but the identification of communism with fascism is an illusion…

  160. lasha

    Very good topic, everything starts from the acknowledging the truth, reconsidering the past is the most important thing for building the future. In the most post-communist countries, the communist elite – which had committed crimes against own people, came back in-to power in 90s continuing the same corrupted activities, re-naming their parties and hiding under the quasi democracies gave them opportunities to re-establish themselves as politicians. I know very well the cases in Caucasus, where former KGB officials were able to keep their links with Russian security forces because of their common communist roots. We have never had any regulation for seeing these people as they are, not as they pretend to be. To be honest even though most of the post-communist states have long history, they newly started the nation building with the transitions toward democracy, the most important condition for the state building is a national unity (Rustow) if we have doubts in neighbors, about their past and present, we will be doubtful in our co-future.

  161. Profile photo of Емил
    Емил

    Quite serious but let me remind that imposing of common for all States law about this sensitive issue will lead EU to great ridge between Western and Eastern Europe again. As it is mentioned above, each State has its own laws about totalitarian regimes. If EU really wanted common law for all 28 Member States, it would have imposed a definition and clarification. If the idea is just to condemn all antihuman regimes, I am interested to find out what MEPs think about drone attacks and Guantanamo? And what does it mean to deny the crimes? Is that only about the mass extermination of people and concentration camps or also about whole history of the Communist regimes.

    If one say a Balkan country was more developed during these times, it that a deny? Because it could be true, so, EU is trying to ban freedom of speech?

  162. Karel Van Isacker

    Denying the wrongdoings of Mao, Stalin, Lenin, etc. is as much as ignoring the madness of the Nazi’s. However, the winner writes history, so the madness done by the USA in Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. also should not be denied.

  163. Jaime Martins

    Everything must be discussed, and result in laws that prohibit such crimes against humanity happen again.

  164. Lazaros Kalaitzidis

    Enormously stupid even to think about it.

    To all those comparing fascism/nazism with communism: Don’t forget that communists were those that saved Europe from nazism, and that brought nazis on their knees. Then of course, maybe that’s exactly the reason why some peoples from some specific countries hate communists so much.. :)

  165. Емил Марков

    Respect the principle of subsidiarity! Let each country to decide by its own. Otherwise. we can also put a question about the crimes of anticommunism in the transition period, especially about Eastern Europe.

  166. Profile photo of Luka
    Luka

    If you go for the extreme freedom of speech, you should allow both (fascist and communist symbols and propaganda) or ban both.
    Banning one and allowing other is ridiculous.

  167. Bill

    No. The freedom to say whatever you want obviously has downsides, but it is the challenge of our society that people do not start agreeing with extremists. I dislike sentences like “Freedom of speech is a good thing, but…”. Don’t let us start like this, extremist are not going to stop saying what they want to say just because we banned it. Let’s talk about a healthy education system, because if we have one of those, right and left-wing extremist will look ridiculous for everyone.

  168. Mikołaj Radziński

    Communism made no crimes. Communism ended ONLY as na idea, as na ideology. There was no such thing as a communist state, or the communist crimes. There were crimes of people and organizations who used this beautiful idea of freedom to enslave the society.

  169. Erik Van den Haute

    I believe that freedom of speech should prevail and that it is wrong to make denial of – whatever – crime (be it nazi crimes, communist crimes, crimes committed by the Christian church, crimes committed by the Turks against the Armenians, by the Russians against the jews, by the English against the Boers etc.) illegal. Let historians do their work, and bring in all the scientific evidence of such crimes against the humanity and let citizens freely assess the results of such research. Even when the research gives more than enough evidence to prove that such crimes have been committed (such as for example the nazi crimes or the crimes committed by some communist leaders), there will always be some people stupid enough to deny the evident. It’s not worth taking laws to make their speech illegal. Especially since such laws bring us on a very slippery slope, where – beyond the well known crimes against humanity – it may sometimes become difficult to decide what is true and what is not (history is part of social sciences and thus very relative as a science), and who is going to decide what speech should be allowed and what speech is illegal ? The State ? I’d prefer not…The only limit to free speech should be when a speech does incite to hatred (not denial of a crime against humanity, but inciting people to commit any kind of crime).

  170. Eduardo Santamaria

    Communist parties should be illegal. Any political party that does not believe in Democracy should be banned and of course all far-right parties too.

    • Jorge R.

      Muy bien: deberíamos prohibir todo partido no democrático. La palabra “paradoja” no existe en tu diccionario ¿no? De todos modos… ¿qué es democracia? Se puede decir que un pueblo que va a las urnas a votar cada cuatro años, con el mismo criterio que es de un equipo de futbol o de otro, y que en esos cuatro años pasa totalmente de la política -y es más, no tiene ni parajorera idea de política- ¿podemos decir que es un pueblo demócrata? Yo no me conformo con la democracia formal, deseo la participativa. A mi entender, el pueblo español demuestra ser tan demócrata como el de la antigua República Democrática Alemana. Es decir, nada.

  171. Alkis Karydis

    Today we deny the crimes of the Western world the so called civilized one… We deny the crimes of the US in all countries they got involved over the past decades…. We deny the crimes the rich European countries committed towards the poor… Since we deny all these, since we close our eyes towards all these, don’t you think it is a great hypocrisy to start such a debate which is completely inopportune? Lets admit the crimes that are committed nowadays in South Europe an all over the world and thereafter we can discuss the above mentioned subject!!!

  172. Stavros Domouchtsidis

    What communist regimes did to their people is horrific! Parties that do not recognise those crimes should be illegal. Those who say that communism stopped nazism, are simply fools. Communists invaded Poland in cooperation with the nazi Germany and the soviet union made a pact with the Nazis. Only later Hitler invaded Russia and then the communists were forced to fight him.

  173. Jingshu Ke

    Communism is a crime against humanity. Those who benefit from communism hurt others in return. And therefore, it is a crime and should not be denied.

  174. Szijártó Imre

    NO, freedom of expression is everyone’s fundamental right even if they are nazis or communists. Some people are stupid or ignorant, get over it.

  175. Dimitris Paschalidis-Valof

    let us first define what crime is. And secondly there is now an ongoing and growing movement against Christianity in the middle east isn’t that a crime as well?

  176. Ivaylo Doukov

    This debate has been going back and forth for decades in the postcommunist states of Europe. Unfortunately the European historical science seems to work under the same ideological pressure as their former Soviet counterparts. The simple truth of the matter is that we, the european citizens do not understand well enough what and why took place. And we don’t because much of the documents concerning the so called October Revolution remain secret – much of the oficial british records for example. This is the main difference between the nazi regime and the communist regime’s – the nazi archives are in their majority have been made public. And even that does not help since many facts have been deliberately passed without notice. Just think about it – how many of the people here know, that Prescott Bush, the father of former president George Bush, was tried in court for receiving profit from Auschwitz?
    It is a grave mistake to make decisions based on incomplete facts and emotions. It is this kind of immature acts that have the opposite effect – the nazi regime is the best possible example, having been made illegal, and the denial of the nazi war crimes as well, we are now looking at a neonazi movement around the world, growing stronger with every day.

    “Things which ought to be taken for granted lose their force when they emerge in the form of arbitrary pronouncements…. Objects mistakenly made subject to legislation result only in the limitation, if not the complete annulment, of that which is attempted to be safeguarded.” Prince Klemence von Metternich.

  177. Carlos V Arc

    I just condemn violence (of any kind and colour). State terrorism, killings and spying has been made by world leaders under communism, nazism, neoliberalism, socialdemoracy, conservatism, etc… Books dont kill or harm, its humans with power hunger.

  178. Tseno Banchev

    I oppose the prosecution of individuals for “Holocaust denial”. I support freedom of thought, speech and debate. The crimes of communism are much bigger than those of Nationalsocialism, but I do not support criminalizing their denial. It should be up to individual’s choice.

  179. Yolanda Loureiro

    all crimes must be criminalized. and the crimes of capitalism???? they kill slowly and silently . shoudn’t they be criminalized ???? we are waiting for that

  180. Eli Dirkx

    Whatever your opinion on communism and fascism, you can’t legislate people into thinking differently.

    You can, however, discuss it with them individually instead of threatening to throw them in jail like some totalitarian douchewad.
    If they feel persecuted, it’ll just strengthen their beliefs.

  181. Francesco Pazienza

    The communist Red Army saved the free world from nazi… Shall we condamn the crimes of Capitalism? read “Confessions of a Economy hitman”

  182. Brad Rappaport

    The real specter of denial here is of the erstwhile allies of fascism, since conquered by the Red Army, who would like to deny the crimes they committed against the Jews. This they aim to do by resurrecting the old fascist rhetoric tying Judaism to Bolshevism, so that they can claim that they, too, were victims, thus nullifying the role as a place-holder for the sacred that the Holocaust has played in modern European thinking since the war.

  183. Jorge R.

    In my opinion we should talk about crimes in nazism, comunism and also in the economic totalitarism that we are living now a days. Lots of people suicide in our days or they are being expuled from their home becuase our capitalism system.
    Is it better? Is better to through yourself from window than being in a Siberian Gulag??
    Both are crimes.
    Democracy is talk, sepeak, show…
    Don’t you want to see? We are in the Economical Totalitarism.
    God save the Coin!

  184. Borj Delbai

    No. It is up to historians to debate and decide whether the crimes occured or not. The issues are to be a subject of investigation if we do not want to be subjected to a Ministry of Truth. Same for the Holocaust.

  185. Makis Sklavenitis

    Imo a ridiculous debate.First of all it takes one hell of irrelevance(from what i’m reading here,there are plenty)to compare Communism with Nazism.In the name of the Lord,get real!!The ideology of Communism is a praise to humanity.A gift and the only road for a better world.Yes,mistakes even crimes did happen in the past but it has nothing to do with the ideology of Communism.If we wanna save this World,if we want a better life,Communism is the only realistic way.

  186. Inês Beato

    All crimes should be condemned. Fascist crimes, communism crimes and capitalist crimes. But in terms of ideology what is more dangerous? Communists aren’t the ones ganging up on minorities and commiting hate crimes.

  187. Mihaela Magdalinis

    communists are criminals by essence, the rest does not matter to me. if you do not believe me why don’t you immigrate to an ex-communist country?! enjoy!

    • Talis Briedis

      Well said! and true!

  188. James Stevens

    It should, be we all have to bear in mind, that living in the EU is simply a form of elected Communism, let’s look forward to the rise of individual countries, with national identities and traditions, and the demise of the EU. Socialism/Communism are one and the same, evils that the world needs to rid us of.

  189. Talis Briedis

    YES, as a citizen of Latvia, we still have soviet occupants in LARGE numbers among us. They deny any and all crimes, they even deny occupation. They are a den of thieves and constantly impede Latvia’s development. The KGB archives have been sealed and are scheduled to be revealed in 2014. They ex-KGB informants are working hard to keep them sealed. Those files NEED to be exposed!

  190. Marija Laba

    Talis I think you meant a No then so :) ^^^ I think no! The crimes cannot be denied. The highlighting of the crimes would resolve many issues in post soviet countries: such as in Latvia or Lithuania etc it is the resilience of accepting the communist crimes that makes people angry. People were badly wronged and this should be acknowledged in the history.

  191. Talis Briedis

    YES, as a citizen of Latvia, we still have soviet occupants in LARGE numbers among us. They deny any and all crimes, they even deny occupation. They are a den of thieves and constantly impede Latvia’s development. The KGB archives have been sealed and are scheduled to be revealed in 2014. They ex-KGB informants are working hard to keep them sealed. Those files NEED to be exposed!

  192. Dmitry Vityazeff

    Talis there would be no such country as Latvia if not people who you call ‘occupants’. You should be rather grateful ;)

    About banning communism.. It seems pointless at this stage as it is very unlikely they will come to power ever again. However, comparing communists with nazis is rather weird. Do not forget that Soviets were the best buddies of western european countries when nazis striked, while some democratic countries over the ocean did not want to involve until the outcome became obvious.

  193. wojtek

    These laws have a purpose and are adopted in countries that require such legislative interventions due to history and presence of extremist threat. There will come a moment when these laws should be abolished. This will be once their impediment to free public discussion does greater harm than the harm and risk posed by extremist elements.
    It should be illegal to deny these crimes but such laws should be a temporary ‘hard’ remedy, one that ensures these crimes are not denied and forgotten, which ultimately is in the interest of every nation.

    P.S. Why is there so much off topic in the comments? do people even read the question before answering? there should be a button to vote down off topic comments. ;)

  194. Sten Hubinette

    it should not be illegal to discuss any crimes committed by any one, group, or economic strata, or political party; past or present.

  195. Sofia Terzieva

    Everyone, who supports denying of any crime makes him/her involved to it. There will be no justice for the victims and their families just because the crime is denied. On the other hand I have the following questions: Why we debate this issue so late? Why there was no debate 24 years ago?

  196. Olivier Laurent

    Mmmh I thought one of the most basic human rights was free speech? How come that you are already weakenning this fondemental concept. Do you thinl that the communist nightmare was the product of evil people? I’m pretty sure they were as convinced as you are to work for the good of the people.

  197. Paulo Especial

    There shouldn’t be possible any kind of extremisms in Europe period!

    And Yes, one should not be able to deny the crimes under politics, religions and so on.

  198. Daniel Iulian Mihai

    Communism itself is not a bad idea. Crimes that have been done by the previous forms of communism should be definitely recognized and denied in order to ensure that we never let that to happen ever again.

  199. Daniel

    Communism itself is not a bad idea. Crimes that have been done by the previous forms of communism should be definitely recognized and denied in order to ensure that we never let that to happen ever again.

  200. Bill Mitrox

    Let’s ask ifit should be illegal to deny the crimes of Catholic Church as well.

  201. THE MACHINE

    THE MACHINE says : “It should be illegal to deny the crimes of corporatism.”

  202. Vicente Silva Tavares

    The same way is crime to deny the crimes of nazism, the same way it should be crime to deny the crimes of communism. 40 millions victims of Stalin are crying for justice. To not speak about the Germans that fall at the Berlin Wall, the victmis of Hungary, the victims of Czechoslovakia, the victims of the mad guy Henver Hoxa, and so on. Only in Europe.

  203. Egon Witte

    capitalism ..nazism, communism, islamic terrorism … which dead people are more dead…? What a question is that..? It is a shame for every soul … we lost… in any country..

  204. Profile photo of Costin
    Costin

    Offcourse it should be illegal, communism did the most harm to all eastern countries, i know cause i see the result of communism indoctrination in Romania day by day, and the political class is still anchored in communism.
    In my opinion communism did more harm to a lot more people then fascism and nazy’s, cause communism lasted for more the 50 years and it affected entire generations.

    nazy=communism as hitler=lenin/stalin

  205. Urban Schrott

    What is your agenda with the same question that you already asked on August 12th and August 23th? Of all the problems Europe has, you keep bringing up this question over and over? Just fishing for clicks or running an agenda?

    Why would denying anything be illegal? Punishing anyone for believing whatever they like or denying whatever they like goes against the very idea of democracy, free speech, free thinking, human rights, etc. and is a step towards an orwellian ?thought crime?.

    What I believe is really behind these bans is to prevent discussion of any controversial issues. Who is it really against? Who is denying any crimes actually? Who will make the ?list of official nazi & communist crimes? which make you a ?criminal? if you deny them? Which ones will be on it? Will all that will be on it completely and 100% scientifically correct, politicaly approved by all involved sides, or will there be room for propaganda, manipulation, distorting events, double interpretations, political interests, etc? Will it only involve crimes done by regimes officially, or also by individuals in the regimmes unoficially? Will it include only nazi & communist crimes, or all crimes against humanity, no matter who committed them. What about crimes by West-friendly dictators? What about those of fascists, democrats, capitalists, anarchists, socialists, christians, muslims, Europeans, Americans, Africans, etc? Will there be a detailed list of every crime in the world every committed by anyone that noone should ever deny?

    To me this looks like just another tool for propaganda and nothing else.

  206. Pedro Redondeiro

    Nop it should not, it would against the freedom of speech principal!! However, these crimes from communism right extremists and so on, should be punished in justice, just like it happened in Ireland woth bankers and politicians!! ;)

  207. João M. P. Ferreira

    A crime is always, a crime! It doesn’t matter if it was, the Nazis, the Communist or the Fascists, or any other ideology, a bad thing made by bad people, deserves it’s punishment!

  208. Ioan-Mircea Bebu

    No, it shouldn’t be illegal. It makes a false connection with an ideology that doesn’t involve crime. The people involved crime. Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of Christianity along time?

  209. Leela Nikolopoulos

    I strongly believe it is about time we did away with political parties.I think that belonging to a political party deprives MPs from freely expressing their opinion and acting on their own accord. Secondly, parties consume a huge amount of a country`s budget which could otherwise be used towards bettering its citizens lives. Thirdly in my opinion political parties belong to the past and citizens should take active part in the decision making conserning their lives. They should vote for a parliament consisting of specialists in each sector of their every day lives, who will take their oath to serve the citizens` will with honesty, modesty and sincerety and to accept the responsibility of their actions. These specialists should have no connection whatsoever with their predecessors, political parties, politicians.They should be independent personalities, dedicated to their task which will be to serve the welfare of their country and its people. All the decision making should be voted by the people in small communities after they are extensively informed about the issues which will rule their lives and the elected ministers should carry out effectively the peoples command. It is high time for Direct Democracy ! So, I do not vote for any party !

  210. Pavlos Vasileiadis

    Crimes of any nature should be condemned and punished in a court of law. In public life, however, any attempt to adopt a similar tactic would be at least hypocritical. You can’t punish a person’s opinion. Ofcourse, we get a lot of extremist nonsense, but such is democracy. Voltaire used to say: I am totally against what you say, but I will defend to the end your right to say it.
    As for the rest, I think Urban Scott has covered the subject!

  211. Boriss Dunajevskis

    320000-national minority discriminate in nationalist Latvia 22 years after destroy the USSR and violence their human righs continue due to inaction EU,UN,Russia,Ukraine,Belorus!

    • Profile photo of Jon
      Jon

      Nu, protams idiot! Tu raudi par PSRS sabrukšanu? Brauc pie sava Puķina un redzi kā tev klāsies tur ar savām “Humānām tiesībām”. Laidies, pašol nahuj neviens Latvietis tevi negrib Latvijā tu sūdu maisītājs tu!

  212. Ana Georgieva

    The world has never seen such crimes as the ones done by the “western democrats” in the 20 and 21 century. What they do in Syria with their new weapons is absolute genoside, like the one in Hiroshima, infront of the eyes of the whole world. They will destroy completely the whole region and maybe the whole world one day. Then they will be happy, on their own, the “kings” of the univerce.

    • Kroum Balabanov

      Which democrats, Ana? The Nazzi’s grew on the dying body of a week or broken democracy. The communist regime in Russia came to power as a result of an illegal coup? And who usedchemical weapons in Syria? And would you rather ave another 5 million Japanese and 1 million Americans dead in ground assault campaign? And who killed 20 million Soviet citizens apart from WW2 Casualties?
      Totaltarianism arises where democracy fails.

  213. Profile photo of Jon
    Jon

    Should it be illegal to deny the crimes of communism?
    – The fact that they even have to debate this issue is absurd! Communism has killed over 150 million Europeans! Whereas the Germans did what compared to that? A drop in the debated bucket. Oops, I guess I just broke the law by using the word debated!

    I’m just so sick of the world being so one-sided! Don’t 150 million European lives count for anything compared to some six million Jews? And they wonder why anti-semitism is still rampant with attitudes like this! This will never change as long as these one-sided and bigoted views persist, because there will always be people suspicious and resentful, because they force people to believe that the Jews run the world and it’s politics!

  214. Profile photo of Natan
    Natan

    Yes but also the denying both Armenian genocide and fascists crimes should be illegal.

    • Kroum Balabanov

      True and fair

  215. Mario Reis

    it was not the communism to comit crimes but the people in name of communism, the cristians and the inquisition, and all governments in wai or another they have comited crimes, I think is more importante to discuss more the actual politic systeme and the way the capitalismo is distroing all the democratic European culture, the social assistence, the health systems, the labor rights etc…

  216. Erri Calox

    In the name of the Christian God millions of people were killed during the Crusades, the Reconquista, the Discover of the New World, the Colonization of Africa, the Second World War (Nazi “Got mit uns!”), etc. So do forbid the name of God and Jesus if you really are inspired by some banning will!

  217. iakovos

    Communists are common thieves, and of course communism should be illegal. Denying crimes of communism, should be equated to denying a genocide

  218. Eduard

    Absolutely! Who believe in Communism didn’t live in Communism, so the simple answer is YES!

    Communism even killed more people than Hitler and a lot of people don’t even know it…Both nazism and communism should be condemned and should be illegal to deny their crimes against humanity!

  219. Jake

    The Bolsheviks were as brutal or if not more than Hitler himself. If you want to go ahead and ban fascism or anything too “far right” then you should go and ban the far left. Personally I do not believe in banning anything, things that are banned begin to be questioned. If we are to believe in a true democracy we must allow every possible idea to exist, even if it makes us uncomfortable. The onus is on the people to challenge such ideas, banning ideas makes them more appealing

  220. Silk

    Dear Jake
    That was brilliant and more importantly perfect what you just wrote.

  221. Kiril

    I spent 20 years of my life in the deep communism in Bulgaria and I dont want to see a communism again. In fact, there is no difference between Communism and Nazism. Extreme “left”and “right” are not political directions, they are the same criminal envirinment. I am angry that the Bulgarian parliament deny the crimes of the cimmunist party, but its because most of our polititians are communists in mimicry.

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