Mr. Speaker, on May 8, 1945, the Second World War ended in Europe. It began on September 1, 1939, when Nazi Germany attacked Poland, later joined by the Soviet Union, their infamy consummated by the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. World War II unleashed evil of an unimaginable scale, with a cost so high it is still difficult to comprehend: the Holocaust; Stalin's gulags; the rape and slaughter of millions; forced deportations; the assault on language, culture and national identities.
The war ended and a new Cold War began with half of Europe shrouded in darkness until Communism was defeated. Today, Vladimir Putin threatens global peace and security once again, as he wages an illegal war in Ukraine and annexes territory, just like Hitler did.
World War II provided us with many lessons, and those remain relevant today and we should listen. It is fitting that the commemoration of the war's end takes place where it began: in Poland.
It is our solemn duty to Zachor to remember the sacrifices of those who fought and those who perished for our freedom and never again allow evil to flourish.