The Moscow-based “World Without Nazism” (WWN) purports to be an independent organization dedicated to combating anti-Semitism and neo-fascism in Europe. In reality, it is a Russian-backed propaganda tool meant to defame leaders of former Soviet republics as the legatees of Nazi collaborators. James Kirchick writes:
World Without Nazism’s name harks back to cold-war days, when Soviet front organizations took on anodyne titles like the World Peace Council [or the] World Federation of Democratic Youth, and embroidered themselves in the general cause of “anti-fascism.” Blundering disingenuousness, however, did not go away with the collapse of the Soviet Union. . . . WWN focuses its energies mainly on the former Soviet Union, and has a particular obsession with Ukraine and the Baltic States. . . . The agenda of WWN with regard to those countries is to defame their governments—all resolutely opposed to Russian influence—with the “fascist” label. . . .
The difficulties that some post-Communist countries have had in wrestling with their Holocaust histories have necessitated careful work by researchers, scholars, and witnesses alike. But by perverting and politicizing the memory of the Shoah—digging into the Stalinist playbook and labeling anyone and everyone who disagrees with them a “fascist” or a “Nazi”—WWN has in fact contributed to the very problem it was purportedly founded to combat: it has trivialized the Holocaust.