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World war II finally ends

The tragedy of the Polish air crash has formed a new bond between Europe and Russia

By Ivan Krastev   May 2010

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and his Polish counterpart Donald Tusk at the crash site

On 10th April 2010, the second world war finally ended. It lasted over 70 years, killed millions of people and tortured the memories of millions more. Ironically, it ended almost exactly 20 years after its successor, the cold war. President Lech Kaczynski of Poland and 95 other members of the country’s elite were its last victims.

The Katyn massacre proved the key to the end of the war. In 1940, the Russians killed more than 22,000 Polish officers in Katyn, a small town just west of…

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