Rotten Fence, Kommunarka, Moscow, Russia

Rotten Fence.JPG

Rotten Fence

Wide new highways now embrace the Kommunarka wasteland, just outside of Moscow, but inside the fences reigns an eerie peace. Around here was the mansion of some top officials of NKVD until 1937, when they began to use the area as an execution site. For many years, first throughout the Great Terror and then during the World War II, NKVD shot and buried at least 14 000 people in Kommunarka, including, for example, the entire government of Mongolia. Eventually the area was closed and long fence was built alongside its borders. After the collapse of the Soviet Union the mass grave came to the light, and later orthodox church of Russia claimed it. Nobody knows how many people are still buried there and who they are. There are few monuments to commemorate them, but the most telling memorial is the rotten fence that has shielded for decades the stories  and the names of the innocent victims of the purges.


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