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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Putin Presses for Stalin's Anthem

President Vladimir Putin wants Russians to resume humming Stalin’s old anthem in the new millennium, but with words about a flying eagle to replace the lines about the "unbreakable" Soviet Union.

A Kremlin source said Tuesday that Putin wanted parliament to reestablish the Soviet tune as the national song, with new words by Sergei Mikhalkov, the children’s poet who wrote the original text nearly 60 years ago.

The source said the Kremlin would send a bill to the State Duma next week proposing to keep intact the music composed by Alexander Alexandrov in 1943, accompanied by new verses by 87-year-old Mikhalkov.

Deputies will also have to vote to approve other state symbols — the double-headed eagle and the red, white and blue flag.

The Kremlin source quoted the opening lines of Mikhalkov’s new verses, making it clear Putin had made up his mind: "Its mighty wings spread above us/ The Russian eagle is hovering high/ The Fatherland’s tricolor symbol/ Is leading Russia’s peoples to victory."