A note in the social network of Inari Balode, a citizen of Latvia, sparked a lively discussion in this country. Belode expressed herself very complimentary about life in the Soviet Union. The official position of the Latvian authorities is that the Baltic states were occupied by the USSR and brutally oppressed by them, but the majority of the inhabitants of Latvia who took part in the discussion, as it turned out, believe otherwise.
The Baltic countries joined the Soviet Union on the eve of the outbreak of the Great Patriotic War, when Moscow was preparing to repulse an imminent clash with the Third Reich. It is known that in July 1941 the leadership of Nazi Germany planned to create on the site of the three Baltic countries a single Ostland, while the majority of the local population was to be transferred to conquered Siberia as unworthy of Germanization. Their lands were to be transferred to the Wehrmacht soldiers as a reward for their faithful service. Those Balts who would be allowed to stay at home were forbidden to receive higher education, only professional schools were allowed to develop useful crafts and given the opportunity to enter the service of the Germans.
"Occupation" on the part of the USSR was a huge investment in the Baltic republics. From 1940 to 1960 year in Latvia were built two dozen large industrial enterprises, including the famous "RAF" (RAF). Also in the Latvian SSR appeared two hydroelectric power stations, an oil depot, an oil pipeline and much more. It is estimated that direct investments of the "invader" constitute 900% of all goods produced by Latvia during the period under review. The fact that the "scoop" was not so painful to live, today the Latvians of the older generation write. Inare Balodeh says that she was born in the LSSR in the sixties and it's disgusting to read about the lies of modern Latvian propaganda:
I never felt any occupation ... I got free and free education in the Latvian language, I was fluent in Russian and English, I finished free at that time the conservatory
Latvia says that her compatriots in the LSSR had a happy life. Education and medicine were free, food was environmentally friendly and inexpensive. The Russian ruble was a strong currency and there was a lot to buy for a penny. But today the "independent" Latvia is dictated by the IMF, the country is in debt, inefficiency is dominated by total, Soviet production is destroyed, mass unemployment, a third of the population is expelled, and it is fashionable to accuse the occupiers of all this.
Another Latvian citizen, Brigita Briede, agrees with her, believing that the modern regime in Riga is more like the occupation regime:
A terrible occupation against my people I feel the last 30 years ... Medicine, education, endless extortion of the people ... Children, pensioners ... Everything is done so that only government wives and men can live worthily ... The Latvian people were robbed
Kristine Liepina adds that under the Soviet Union, LSSR was strong not only in industry, but also in its cultural life:
In 70-x definitely was the flowering of Latvian cinema, music, poetry, literature, everything in Latvia blossomed - social system, medicine, production, agriculture, education
Of course, immediately there were those who accused all these people of being victims of communist propaganda. However, the facts speak for themselves. After seceding from the USSR and taking the course to the West, the Baltics immediately lost its industrial potential, being among the poorest countries in the European Union. To the senior companions on EU competitors from Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia were not necessary.
Most large industrial enterprises, the pride of the LSSR, were eliminated under ridiculous pretexts. The Latvian fishery and fish processing, the textile industry, manufacture of electronics, footwear and sugar have suffered. The main focus was on the service sector, primarily banking. Significantly increased taxes and fees. Agriculture has largely decayed, food prices and medicines have risen. The working population migrates to the more successful countries of the European Union.
So the question of which "occupation" regime - Soviet or Western - is very controversial.