Aruda Matulinas and Valery Ivanov, 1990

Aruda Matulinas (Academy of Science) & Valery Ivanov
“Edinstuc,” Vilnius, 14 Sept 1990
Interviewer: Gwynne Dyer

I don’t know where Landsbergis begins.

Their research is to do a poll in Lithuania. Brauzaskas is the preferred leader, including of Russians and Jews, and especially of Lithuanians.

Then they go into a talk in Russian. Gwynne is speaking Russian too.

Landsbergis has some interesting discussion about the problems of minorities in Lithuania. He says that historically, Lithuanians were less repressive toward minorities than other countries. He acknowledges that terrible things happened to Jews there, but says that this happened because of the Germans and the Russians and Germans, and not because of the will of the Lithuanians. He feels that the renaissance of Lithuanian culture is compatible with that of other small minorities, such as the Tartars. There are problems with the Russian minority, although some of the Russians have lived in Lithuania for generations and consider it their home. Some of them have become attached to Lithuanian culture, others not. Some Russians see the Soviet Union as a Russian union and think that Russians ought to dominate. They oppose Lithuanian independence.

Poles. These are not mostly people who have immigrated from Poland, but indigenous people who have taken on Polish language and culture. Many of the Poles are Lithuanian patriots. Some of the Poles remember happily the period of the 1920s, when Poland controlled the Vilnius region. They try to convince other Poles that they should oppose Lithuanian independence, but actually, everybody would be better off under an independent Lithuania and they will fight for that, even if the Poles do not wish it.

The Russian Quest for Peace and Democracy, by Metta Spencer, published by Lexington Books