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FTR #1014 Update on Fascism in Ukraine

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This broadcast was recorded in one, 60-minute segment.

Babchenko’s prospective killer: Oleksiy Tsimbiyaliuk, from Pravy Sektor, on the far right, giving the Nazi salute.

Introduction: As indicated by the title, this broadcast updates and fleshes out a long path of inquiry into the development of fascism in Ukraine, implemented by the OUN/B successor organizations that were empowered by the Maidan Coup of 2014.

In past commentary, we have noted the profound Ukrainian and Gehlen-derived links to the supposed “Russian” hacks leading up to, and during, the 2016 U.S. election campaign.

These high-profile “hacks” have all the earmarks of a “cyber-false flag” operation, which we compared to the “Painting of Oswald Red” in FTR #’s 925 and 926.

Now, we learn that Victoria Nuland, a key player in the EuroMaidan Coup that placed the OUN/B fascist successor organizations in power in Ukraine was informed of the supposed “Russian” hacks months before senior DNC officials were informed.

There was a period, from around May of 2015 to March of 2016, where Victoria Nuland–again, a key EuroMaiden instigator–knew about these hacks, but the DNC effectively didn’t. In addition, other State Department officials, as well as Victoria Nuland, were informed about the DNC hacks in December of 2015 and tasked with developing a US response.

” . . . . That conclusion was reinforced Wednesday by another witness, Victoria Nuland, who served as assistant secretary of state for Europe during the Obama administration. She told the panel that she had been briefed as early as December 2015 about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee — long before senior DNC officials were aware of it — and that the intrusion had all the hallmarks of a Russian operation. . . . As she and other State Department officials became ‘more alarmed’ about what the Russians were up to in the spring of 2016, they were authorized by then Secretary of State John Kerry to develop proposals for ways to deter the Russians. . . . ”

This raises the question of whether the “response” she developed may have involved engaging and mobilizing the OUN/B and Gehlen-derived elements we looked at in FTR #’s 943 and 981.

Next, we note that Ukraine’s embrace of neo-Nazi vigilantism continued, with the fourth attack on a Roma camp in six weeks, covered live on Facebook. The attack was launched by members of the new formed Azov National Druzhyna militia, an offshoot of the Azov Battalion formed in January to patrol the streets. Ukrainian police just stood around approvingly watching it happen.

CORRECTION: Former Azov Battalion commander Vadim Troyan is described as head of Ukraine’s police establishment. He was, but is now the Deputy Interior Minister to Arsen Avakov.

Azov Battalion National Druzhyna Militia

We have noted that the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion runs a youth camp. Ukraine’s Youth and Sports Ministry published a video last week showing its officials unanimously voting to fund variously organizations for “national-patriotic education projects”. Among the recipients of those funds: Svoboda and C14.

Specifically, the money went to three far right organizations founded by members of C14 and Svoboda. The Educational Assembly, founded by C14 head Yevhen Karas; C14 Sich, founded by Volodymyr Karas, who shares the same patronymic, surname, and address as the C14 head; and Holosiyiv Hideout, whose founders include several members of Svoboda.

The Svoboda group will by about $29,200 for four festival. That alone is profoundly disturbing. But even more disturbing is what The two C14 groups got funds for: The C14 ‘Educational Assembly’ and C14 Sich’s children’s summer camp will received about $16,900 for three children’s events.

There has been yet another attack on a Roma camp in Ukraine, this time on the outskirts Lviv. A 24 year old was stabbed to death and four others were injured, including a 10 year old boy. Seven suspects ages 16 and 17 have been arrested and a 20 year old is accused of planning the attack.

Might these youth be affiliated with, or motivated by, any of the fascist youth groups funded by the Ukrainian government?

In any event, it’s clear that it’s ‘open season’ on Roma in Ukraine.

Next, we look at the faked assassination of Arkady Babchenko. The alleged hitman supposedly hired by the Russians was a member of Pravy Sektor and a veteran of the combat in the civil war in Ukraine’s East. Another player in the alleged “Russian” plot was an executive with a German-Ukrainian arms manufacturer that manufactured sights for sniper rifles.

Another question in the Babchenko affair concerns the alleged planned purchase of 300 AK-47s and large quantities of explosives.  These munitions were supposedly part of a “Russian” terror campaign, linked to the alleged “Russian” plot against the life of Babchenko and the other journalists.

Recall that, back In March, it was learned that far right Ukrainian war hero, Nadia Savchenko, was alleged by Ukrainian authorities a plotting a devastating terror plot on Ukraine’s parliament? That was 2-3 months, right around the time the SBU allegedly got its intelligence about about this new alleged Moscow-directed assassination/terror plot. Is this the Savchenko terror plot misrepresented under the guise of a Russian terror plot?

One of the signature features of the Babchenko affair is the list of 47 names of journalists allegedly targeted by Russia was unofficially leaked yesterday. A number of Ukrainian journalists, including those on the list, question its credibilityThey note the list is filled with the names of people critical of the Ukrainian authorities.

Anatoliy Matios, Ukraine’s chief military prosecutor, gave an extensive interview where he said that Jews are behind all wars and want to “drown ethnic Slavs in blood.” He would theoretically be in charge of prosecutor abuses by the Ukrainian military units fighting in the East – like the neo-Nazi ‘volunteer battalions.’

In addition, recall the cryptic statement Matios made back in 2016 about the identity of the people involved with the 2014 sniper attacks: “When public learns who is involved in this, people will be very surprised.” In FTR #’s 982993 and 1004, we examined evidence that Ukrainian fascists may well have executed those sniper attacks. It is not reassuring to learn that the chief military prosecutor who is involved in that investigation is a neo-Nazi.

Before approaching the statements of Mayor Moskal (of the Ukrainian village of Skole), we note that a diplomat working in Ukraine’s Hamburg (Germany) consulate expressed openly fascist statements.

We conclude with a look at some of the fruit borne on the vine of Ukrainian revisionist history.

The mayor of Skole cited the work of Volodomyr Viatrovych (English translations from the Ukrainian vary) and his “Ukrainian Institute of National Memory” as documentary justification for an anti-Semitic tirade.

Program Highlights Include:

1. In past commentary, we have noted the profound Ukrainian and Gehlen-derived links to the supposed “Russian” hacks leading up to, and during, the 2016 U.S. election campaign.

These high-profile “hacks” have all the earmarks of a “cyber-false flag” operation, which we compared to the “Painting of Oswald Red” in FTR #’s 925 and 926.

Now, we learn that Victoria Nuland, a key player in the EuroMaidan Coup that placed the OUN/B fascist successor organizations in power in Ukraine was informed of the supposed “Russian” hacks months before senior DNC officials were informed.

There was a period, from around May of 2015 to March of 2016, where Victoria Nuland–again, a key EuroMaiden instigator–knew about these hacks, but the DNC effectively didn’t. In addition, other State Department officials, as well as Victoria Nuland, were informed about the DNC hacks in December of 2015 and tasked with developing a US response.

” . . . . That conclusion was reinforced Wednesday by another witness, Victoria Nuland, who served as assistant secretary of state for Europe during the Obama administration. She told the panel that she had been briefed as early as December 2015 about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee — long before senior DNC officials were aware of it — and that the intrusion had all the hallmarks of a Russian operation. . . . As she and other State Department officials became ‘more alarmed’ about what the Russians were up to in the spring of 2016, they were authorized by then Secretary of State John Kerry to develop proposals for ways to deter the Russians. . . . ”

This raises the question of whether the “response” she developed may have involved engaging and mobilizing the OUN/B and Gehlen-derived elements we looked at in FTR #’s 943 and 981.

“Obama Cyber Chief Confirms ‘Stand Down’ Order against Russian Cyberattacks in Summer 2016” by Michael Isikoff; Yahoo News; 06/20/2018.

The Obama White House’s chief cyber official testified Wednesday that proposals he was developing to counter Russia’s attack on the U.S. presidential election were put on a “back burner” after he was ordered to “stand down” his efforts in the summer of 2016.The comments by Michael Daniel, who served as White House “cyber security coordinator” between 2012 and January of last year, provided his first public confirmation of a much-discussed passage in the book, ““Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump,” co-written by this reporter and David Corn, that detailed his thwarted efforts to respond to the Russian attack. . . .

. . . . That conclusion was reinforced Wednesday by another witness, Victoria Nuland, who served as assistant secretary of state for Europe during the Obama administration. She told the panel that she had been briefed as early as December 2015 about the hacking of the Democratic National Committee — long before senior DNC officials were aware of it — and that the intrusion had all the hallmarks of a Russian operation.

As she and other State Department officials became “more alarmed” about what the Russians were up to in the spring of 2016, they were authorized by then Secretary of State John Kerry to develop proposals for ways to deter the Russians. But most of those steps were never taken — in part because officials assumed they would be taken up by the next administration.

“I believe there were deterrence measures we could have taken and should have taken,” Nuland testified. . . .

2. Ukraine’s embrace of neo-Nazi vigilantism continued, with the fourth attack on a Roma camp in six weeks, covered live on Facebook. The attack was launched by members of the new formed Azov National Druzhyna militia, an offshoot of the Azov Battalion formed in January to patrol the streets. Ukrainian police just stood around approvingly watching it happen.

“With Axes And Hammers, Far-Right Vigilantes Destroy Another Romany Camp In Kyiv” by Christopher Miller; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; 06/08/2018

Swinging axes and sledgehammers as a camera rolled, members of the far-right Azov National Druzhyna militia destroyed a Romany camp in Kyiv’s Holosiyivskiy Park on June 7. The attack marks the second such incident by far-right vigilantes in Kyiv and the fourth in Ukraine in the past six weeks.

The National Druzhyna, a militia formed in January by veterans of the far-right Azov Battalion, had visited the camp earlier in the day and spoken threateningly with a woman who lived there, an encounter that was filmed by the group and published on its Facebook page.

The militia also issued an ultimatum in the Facebook post for the Roma to clear out within 24 hours or be forced out by a “mob.”

“When the police don’t act, the National Druzhyna takes control of the situation,” the militia wrote.

But the militia didn’t wait. Hours later, what appeared to be around two dozen nationalists returned to destroy the camp and harass the few Romany women still there.

The attack was broadcast live on the militia’s Facebook page.

That video, which has since been removed, shows the National Druzhyna members in T-shirts adorned with the group’s insignia hacking at the camp’s makeshift homes with axes and hammers.

A more complete, 12-minute clip of the nationalists’ raid was eventually uploaded to YouTube by EuroMaydan, a political group born from the 2013-14 uprising of the same name.

At one point, the militia members mock a woman and child fleeing with their belongings, asking if they planned to eat a nearby dog. “I heard you eat dogs,” one of the men says. Later, another belittles a woman trying to collect belongings from the debris by suggesting her actions might be acceptable “in India, but not here.”

Near the end of the video, uniformed Ukrainian police officers appear and casually make conversation as the nationalists wind up their raid.

With police looking on, more than a dozen of the vigilantes pose together to a cry of “Glory to the nation! Death to enemies!”

Kyiv police spokeswoman Oksana Blyshchik told Hromadske TV the Romany group had already fled the camp when militia members arrived, which the video clearly contradicts. She added that no one had been injured and nobody had been detained. . . .

. . . . Right-Wing Immunity?

The Holosiyivskiy camp attack follows three others within the past month and a half.

In May, right-wing thugs attacked a Romany camp in western Ternopil. That followed the burning of one in the nearby village of Rudne in the Lviv region.

In April, members of the right-wing extremist group C14 chased a group of Roma from their camp at Lysa Hora nature reserve in Kyiv. Masked attackers hurled stones and sprayed gas as they chased terrified Romany men, women, and children from the makeshift settlement.

Police did nothing until a video of the attack went viral online, forcing them to open an investigation, the results of which remain unclear. . . .

3. We have noted that the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion runs a youth camp. Ukraine’s Youth and Sports Ministry published a video last week showing its officials unanimously voting to fund variously organizations for “national-patriotic education projects”. Among the recipients of those funds: Svoboda and C14.

Specifically, the money went to three far right organizations founded by members of C14 and Svoboda. The Educational Assembly, founded by C14 head Yevhen Karas; C14 Sich, founded by Volodymyr Karas, who shares the same patronymic, surname, and address as the C14 head; and Holosiyiv Hideout, whose founders include several members of Svoboda.

The Svoboda group will by about $29,200 for four festival. That alone is profoundly disturbing. But even more disturbing is what The two C14 groups got funds for: The C14 ‘Educational Assembly’ and C14 Sich’s children’s summer camp will received about $16,900 for three children’s events.

“Ukrainian Militia Behind Brutal Romany Attacks Getting State Funds” by Christopher Miller; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; 06/14/2018.

Amid a recent wave of far-right attacks against minority groups, human rights activists have questioned how Ukrainian police could stand and watch the violence and destruction unfold.

But it seems they may now have an explanation: some of the groups involved receive financial support from the Ukrainian government.

C14, a group whose members have openly expressed neo-Nazi views and been involved in the recent violent attacks on Romany camps in Kyiv, and the far-right affiliated Svoboda political party, are the recipients of Youth and Sports Ministry grants for “national-patriotic education projects,” according to a June 13 report by Hromadske Radio.

The report’s information comes directly from a video that the Youth and Sports Ministry published itself on YouTube on June 8 that shows its officials voting unanimously to fund the organizations.

That these far-right extremist groups have been awarded grants from the Ukrainian government is likely to be of great concern to Kyiv’s Western backers and leading international human rights organizations, four of which published an open letter to authorities on June 14 decrying what they called a sharp spike in political violence from these groups, who they say pose a great danger to Ukrainian democracy.

In a statement published on its website, the Youth and Sports Ministry said it does not directly finance any public groups, including far-right ones, but does finance the projects of those groups. . . .

. . . . Money For ‘Patriotic Education’

Three far-right groups won a Youth and Sports Ministry competition for “national-patriotic education projects” funded with taxpayer money: the Educational Assembly, founded by C14 head Yevhen Karas; C14 Sich, founded by Volodymyr Karas, who shares the same patronymic, surname, and address as the C14 head; and Holosiyiv Hideout, whose founders include several members of the Svoboda political party.

C14’s Educational Assembly and a C14 Sich children’s summer camp will receive 440,000 hryvnia (about $16,900) from the ministry for three children’s events. Holosiyiv Hideout will get 760,000 hryvnia (about $29,200) for four festivals.

C14 takes its name from a 14-word phrase used by white supremacists and it has openly offered to provide members for hire to work as thugs. . . .

4. There has been yet another attack on a Roma camp in Ukraine, this time on the outskirts Lviv. A 24 year old was stabbed to death and four others were injured, including a 10 year old boy.

Seven suspects ages 16 and 17 have been arrest and a 20 year old is accused of planning the attack. So far there isn’t an indication of whether or not the suspects are members of the ‘usual suspects:’ organizations like the Azov Battalion or C14. It’s  evident that it’s ‘open season’ on Roma in Ukraine.

“Roma Camp Attack Leaves One Dead;” BBC; 06/24/2018.

One person has been killed in an attack on a Roma camp in western Ukraine late on Saturday night.

A masked group armed with batons and other weapons targeted the camp on the outskirts of the city of Lviv shortly before midnight, according to police.

A 24-year-old man died of stab wounds, while four others – including a 10-year-old boy – were injured. 

It is the latest in a series of attacks on Ukraine’s Roma community (also known as gypsies).

Seven suspects aged 16 and 17 have been arrested, as well as a 20-year-old accused of planning the attack. . . .

4. Next, we look at the faked assassination of Arkady Babchenko. The alleged hitman supposedly hired by the Russians was a member of Pravy Sektor and a veteran of the combat in the civil war in Ukraine’s East. Another player in the alleged “Russian” plot was an executive with a German-Ukrainian arms manufacturer that manufactured sights for sniper rifles.

“After the Faked Journalist Killing in Ukraine, the Murk Deepens” by Neil MacFarquhar; The New York Times6/1/ 2018.

The strange cast of characters emerging in the faked assassination of a prominent Putin critic — including a Russia-hating right-wing priest and the director of a Ukrainian arms manufacturer — set the already bizarre case on a path to a murky, up-is-down mess of the sort that Ukraine seems to specialize in.

Both the priest and the executive claimed to be working for Ukraine’s intelligence services. Ukrainian officials at first denied that but, in the case of the priest, subsequently reversed themselves and admitted he had played a role. They would not say what.

Senior Ukrainian officials have been on the defensive since Wednesday, when the head of the security services and the chief prosecutor announced that they had staged the shooting death of a dissident Russian war correspondent in order to trace his would-be killers back to Russian intelligence.

However, in the absence of solid facts and real evidence about any plot to kill the dissident, Arkady Babchenko, somewhat implausible figures have emerged from the shadows, perhaps the most unlikely being the priest, who claimed he was hired to carry out the hit.

Oleksiy Tsimbalyuk, once a monk and a deacon in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church who used the clerical name Aristarkh, wrote on his Facebook page that he was the man who went to the authorities after being hired to kill Mr. Babchenko.

The cleric has never made a secret of his longstanding antipathy toward Russia, fighting Russian-backed militias in eastern Ukraine and switching his religious affiliation from the Russian Orthodox Church to a breakaway branch of the Orthodox Church that has declared its independence from Moscow.

Pictures on his Facebook page show him in green combat fatigues including a patch from the Right Sector, a Ukrainian ultranationalist organization that some, particularly the Kremlin, portray as a neo-Nazi group. In a 10-minute documentary about him that appeared online in January 2017, he called killing members of the Russian-backed militias in eastern Ukraine “an act of mercy.”

Given such strong and publicly avowed enmity toward Russia, it is odd to say the least that Mr. Tsimbalyuk would be selected to carry out the contract killing of a prominent Kremlin critic.

When he first posted the information on Facebook, a spokeswoman for the Security Service of Ukraine, known by its initials, S.B.U., denied that he was involved. But she later acknowledged that he had been.

Then there is the accused organizer, who Ukrainian officials said was just warming up with the killing of Mr. Babchenko and had a list of some 30 others Moscow supposedly wanted to eliminate.

That man, Boris L. Herman, was arraigned in a Kiev court on Thursday night and ordered to be held in custody for two months. Prosecutors said he had given the supposed assassin a down payment of $15,000, half what he was promised for carrying out the hit.

In court, Mr. Herman tried both to link the plot to President Vladimir V. Putin and to claim that he, too, had been working for Ukraine all along. He was first contacted six months ago, he said. . . . .

. . . . Claiming that he was working for Ukrainian counterintelligence, he said he had known perfectly well that there would be no killing. A monk was hired because he would not kill an unarmed man, he said in court, and once Mr. Babchenko’s “assassination” had taken place, he said, his Russian contact had given him the list of 30 more names, which he says he passed to Ukrainian counterintelligence.

Mr. Herman’s lawyer, Eugene Solodko, wrote on Facebook that his client was the executive director of Schmeisser, a Ukrainian-German joint venture and the only arms manufacturer in Ukraine not owned by the government. It specializes in manufacturing sights for sniper rifles, he wrote. . . . 

5. Alleged “Russian” Oleksiy Tsymbaliuk is a member of Pravy Sektor, an unlikely vehicle for a Russian plot.

“Babchenko’s ‘Hitman’ Reveals Identity: Orthodox Monk, Right Sector Member, Donbas War Veteran;” UNIAN.info; 6/1/2018.

He is a member of the Right Sector Organization, which is outlawed in Russia.

“Hitman” who was hired to assassinate Russian journalist and Kremlin critic Arkady Babchenko in Ukraine has revealed his identity: Oleksiy Tsymbaliuk is a former Orthodox church monk, a Right Sector member, a volunteer and a Donbas war veteran.

Tsymbaliuk explained his decision by the fact that after tapes with his voice, which was not disguised, were made public, he saw no point in “holing up.” . . . . 

. . . . He said he would not give any interviews in the near future as long as the investigation is under way. Besides, he signed a non-disclosure agreement. . . .

6. Another question in the Babchenko affair concerns the alleged planned purchase of 300 AK-47s and large quantities of explosives.  These munitions were supposedly part of a “Russian” terror campaign, linked to the alleged “Russian” plot against the life of Babchenko and the other journalists.

Recall that, back In March, it was learned that far right Ukrainian war hero, Nadia Savchenko, was alleged by Ukrainian authorities a plotting a devastating terror plot on Ukraine’s parliament? That was 2-3 months, right around the time the SBU allegedly got its intelligence about about this new alleged Moscow-directed assassination/terror plot. Is this the Savchenko terror plot misrepresented under the guise of a Russian terror plot?

“Arkady Babchenko Reveals He Faked His Death to Thwart Moscow Plot” by Luke Harding and Andrew Roth; The Guardian; 5/30/2018.

Russian journalist fools world’s media by staging his murder in elaborate scheme with Ukraine

. . . . Details of the precise threat to Babchenko’s life were murky. Vasyl Hrytsak, the head of the SBU, said Russia’s spy agencies had contacted a middleman, identified only as G, and paid him $40,000 to arrange the murder.The middleman in turn approached a former Ukrainian volunteer soldier to carry out the hit, together with additional “terrorist acts”, he said.

The middleman was now in custody, Hrytsak said, showing video of a middle-aged, white-haired man being bundled by officers into a van. Hrytsak added that phone intercepts had revealed his contacts in Moscow. Dozens of contract killings had been averted, he suggested, claiming that the list of potential victims in Ukraine stretched to 30 names.

The Ukrainian suspect was supposed to buy a large quantity of weapons and explosive, including 300 AK-47 rifles and “hundreds of kilos of explosives”, Hrytsak alleged. . . . .

8. One of the signature features of the Babchenko affair is the list of 47 names of journalists allegedly targeted by Russia was unofficially leaked yesterday. A number of Ukrainian journalists, including those on the list, question its credibilityThey note the list is filled with the names of people critical of the Ukrainian authorities.

“In Ukraine, Prominent Journalists Targeted By ‘Russian Hit List’ Question Its Authenticity” by Christopher Miller; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; 06/06/2018.

The leak of an alleged “Russian hit list” has stirred anxieties and raised more questions about the bizarre Ukrainian staging of journalist Arkady Babchenko’s death after journalists on the list said they doubted its authenticity. . . .

. . . . Instead of details in the bizarre case becoming clearer, they have grown murkier by the day, with authorities fingering the director of a Ukrainian arms manufacturer that provides sights to snipers of its armed forces as the organizer who hired a right-wing, anti-Russian, former monk-turned-volunteer soldier to be the shooter.

Both have claimed to have been in league with Ukraine’s intelligence services, something Ukrainian officials first denied, then partly corrected, saying the would-be shooter, Oleksiy Tsimbalyuk, had indeed been working with them. The manufacturer, Borys Herman, was remanded in custody by a Kyiv court on May 31.

The whole affair took a strange new turn on June 5 when a purported “hit list” of 47 people — mainly journalists and political activists — that the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) claims to have discovered during the Babchenko operation was leaked to Strana.ua, an opposition news site, and published online. . . . .

. . . . Then later, on June 5, the SBU announced it had launched a criminal investigation into the unauthorized leak of “a list of persons whose details are contained” in materials related to a pretrial investigation, seemingly lending credence to Strana.ua’s report. . . .

. . . . List ‘Multiplies Before Our Eyes’

The “hit list” caused worry and confusion for many journalists as they openly doubted the authenticity of a document that had been so variously described in such a short period of time.

Dmytro Gnap, a journalist for independent Hromadske TV’s Slidstvo.info investigative unit, who is not among those on the list, seemed to doubt its veracity in a post on Facebook, asking sarcastically how the number of people on the list seemed to “multiply before my eyes.”

Others also doubted its provenance, saying they found the makeup of it odd, since so many people on it were critics of the Ukrainian authorities. Oleksiy Bratushchak, a journalist for the independent Ukrayinskaya Pravda news site, wondered whether this signaled an attempt by Ukraine’s intelligence services to control “all [the] movements, all [the] meetings” of its critics ahead of elections.

Reached by RFE/RL on June 4, three journalists on the list who spoke on the condition that their names be withheld due to the potential threat to their lives (and because the SBU had them sign a nondisclosure agreement) said they doubted the authenticity of the list for a number of reasons.

They confirmed the list published by Strana.ua was similar to the one they had been shown by the SBU but said it had some slight differences, including variations in the order of the names and some spellings. All of them noted that Babchenko’s name was not on the list.

The three said they had been offered state security but declined it, saying they did not trust the Ukrainian authorities to protect them or not to spy on them.

One of the journalists brought in said the SBU had also questioned them. Among the questions they were asked: What is your opinion of Russian aggression in Ukraine?

No Criticism Allowed?

Journalists in Ukraine have long faced harassment, intimidation, doxing, and physical attacks — some of which has come from authorities.

On May 30, Larysa Sarhan, spokeswoman for Prosecutor-General Yuriy Lutsenko, published on her Facebook page a list of journalists that included Myroslava Gongadze, head of Voice of America’s Ukrainian service and the widow of murdered Ukrainian journalist Heorhiy Gongadze, and National Union of Journalists of Ukraine Chairman Serhiy Tomilenko.

Sarhan took them to task for criticizing the authorities’ handling of the Babchenko operation, which was also lambasted by international groups.

Harlem Desir, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s (OSCE) representative on freedom of the media, condemned Sarhan’s words.

“The publishing of a list including names of journalists, accusing them of being traitors, is unacceptable and dangerous. This can have serious repercussions for the safety of journalists,” Desir wrote in a letter to the authorities. “I strongly encourage the authorities to intervene and suspend such practices, especially those undertaken by government officials, given the sensitive and difficult environment in Ukraine at the moment.” . . . .

9. Anatoliy Matios, Ukraine’s chief military prosecutor, gave an extensive interview where he said that Jews are behind all wars and want to “drown ethnic Slavs in blood.” He would theoretically be in charge of prosecutor abuses by the Ukrainian military units fighting in the East – like the neo-Nazi ‘volunteer battalions.’

Also recall the cryptic statement Matios made back in 2016 about the identity of the people involved with the 2014 sniper attacks: “When public learns who is involved in this, people will be very surprised.” In FTR #’s 982993 and 1004, we examined evidence that Ukrainian fascists may well have executed those sniper attacks. It is not reassuring to learn that the chief military prosecutor who is involved in that investigation is a neo-Nazi.

“Jews Want to Drown Ukraine in Blood, Ukraine’s Military Prosecutor Says Amid Wave of Racist and Anti-Semitic Attacks” by Cristina Maza; Newsweek; 06/27/2018

In an extensive interview with the Ukrainian news outlet Insider, Anatoliy Matios, Ukraine’s chief military prosecutor, espoused anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in which he implied that Jews want to drown ethnic Slavs in blood.

Referring to Alexander Parvus, a Belarussian-born Marxist theoretician who was active in Germany’s Social Democratic Party in the late 19th century, and who also happened to be Jewish, Matios claimed that Jews can be found financing all great conflicts.

“In each war, there is always a Parvus, who brought Lenin money for a revolution which flooded Slavs with blood for decades. Parvus was also Jewish. In this case, they want to do the same to Ukraine,” Matios told the Insider. . . .

10. Before approaching the statements of Mayor Moskal (of the Ukrainian village of Skole), we note that a diplomat working in Ukraine’s Hamburg (Germany) consulate expressed openly fascist statements.

“Ukrainian mayor and diplomat caught engaging in anti-Semitic rhetoric”; Jewish Telegraphic Agency; 05/15/2018.

. . . . Separately, screenshots shared online show that Vasyl Marushchynets, who works at Ukraine’s consulate in Hamburg, Germany, blamed on Facebook Jews for World War II and saying “death to the anti-fascists” on his private Facebook page, Reuters reported Monday.  . . .

. . . .  In 2015, the Ukrainian Parliament passed a law that criminalizes denying the “heroism” of some of these allies of Nazi Germany, which oversaw the near annihilation of the region’s Jews. . . . 

11. The mayor of Skole cited the work of Volodomyr Viatrovych (English translations from the Ukrainian vary) and his “Ukrainian Institute of National Memory” as documentary justification for an anti-Semitic tirade.

“Example from Ukraine: East European Holocaust Revisionism Feeds Directly Into Blatant Antisemitism”; Defending History; 05/17/2018

Evidence continues to mount that the noxious far-right, state-supported memory politics of Volodymyr Viatrovych’s “Ukrainian Institute of National Memory” are directly leading to growing antisemitism in Ukraine.

The mayor of a town in Western Ukraine says the current government is a “Muscovite-Yid.” What’s striking is how he cites how Vyatrovych’s Institute to embolden and legitimize his views:

“From historical information and now Vladimir Vyatrovich revealing historically truthful documents [we know]: When the Bolsheviks came to power from 70% to 95% were Jews who destroyed the nation and its peoples.”

The full video has added to the picture provided by various recent quotes from the mayor in public venues:

“The performance of the Moscow-Jewish authorities is dragging on for four years.” “For four years, the performance is not Ukrainian government, but, say it correctly, the Moscow-Jewish authorities.”

The mayor also asserts that he analyzed the “extract from the Kabbalah and the Torah” in the book of Pavel Stepanov Mafia and Ukraine and came to the conclusion that Jewish children are taught from childhood to recognize the enemy and how to destroy him: “By the way, a lot of that work is devoted to the death of the goyim: they consider anyone except the Jews to be goyim, all of them — Christians, Arabs, Buddhists, they are not people, they are not people for them. After their coming to world domination, because they are clearly heading for this, they form the policy of cosmopolitanism and liberalism, to destroy all nations, to leave the political nation, mixed up in a heap, with migrations, with Blacks,” the mayor said.

He added that “World Jewry” provided Joseph Stalin with a victory in World War II, and admiringly noted that the American industrialist Henry Ford once called for “isolating the 50 richest Jews” so that there would be no more wars.

Commenting on the ethics of his statements, the mayor said: “Who did I offend? I just told the truth.” Moskal has been the mayor of Skole since 2010.

Judging by the poster behind the mayor’s back, he uttered his monologue at a conference of the Dontsov Scientific and Ideological Center. For those familiar with the 1930s in this part of the world, Dmytro Dontsov was the chief theorist behind the development of Ukrainian Integral Nationalism (kind of a fancy way of saying: fascism), which formed a theoretical basis for OUN-UPA, a World War Two-era ultranationalist organization which engaged in mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Jewish and Polish civilians in its quest to build an ethnically pure Ukrainian state.

 

Discussion

6 comments for “FTR #1014 Update on Fascism in Ukraine”

  1. just got done listening to one of your programs on Bush, Zapata and CIA from 1992; in it you talk excitedly about a “new” book: “The Old Boys”; I thoughtt it was so cool that you’ve been talking about that book for 30 years!

    Speaking of Zapata Oil, I read that the Koch Brothers stole at least 300 million dollars of oil from public lands and got sued and lost.

    anyway, LOVE YOU DAVE, YOU’RE IN MY HEART MAN.

    Posted by mike | July 11, 2018, 6:47 pm
  2. Here’s a pair of article about what appears to be a Ukrainian government-sponsored campaign of intimidation against journalists and the use of the “Myrotvorets” group of Ukrainian government-backed hackers:

    First, here’s an article about how Belarusian writer and Nobel Literature Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich had to cancel an event at the Green Theater in Odessa due to the implied threats of violence after a Ukrainian ‘nationalist’ website that specializes in identifying ‘enemies of Ukraine’, Myrotvorets, declared Alexievich one of those enemies. Myrotvorets’s ‘enemies of Ukraine’ announcement happened four hours before the event. Myrotvorets removed her name from the ‘enemies’ list several hours later but the event remained cancelled out of an abundance of caution:

    Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

    Belarusian Nobel Laureate Alexievich Cancels Event In Ukraine Amid Threats

    August 09, 2018 09:19 GMT

    Belarusian writer and Nobel Literature Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich says she has canceled her meeting with readers in the Ukrainian city of Odesa amid threats.

    Alexievich said in a video statement on August 8 that she learned about threats against her and the organizers of the meeting and therefore decided to cancel the event planned at the Green Theater in the Black Sea port city.

    The Green Theater wrote on Facebook that Alexievich’s name was added to a list of “enemies of Ukraine” by the Ukrainian nationalist website Myrotvorets (Peacekeeper) four hours before Alexievich’s scheduled meeting with readers on August 8.

    The Myrotvorets site accused Alexievich of “propagating interethnic discord and manipulating information important for society” in a speech she delivered in Brooklyn, New York, in 2016.

    Although the site removed Alexievich’s name from the list several hours later, the writer and the theater decided to cancel the event “to avoid possible risks for Alexievich and the audience in the theater.”

    In her video statement, Alexievich called Myrotvorets’ statement about her anti-Ukrainian stance “absolutely far-fetched.”

    In her very first public statement after she was announced the Nobel Prize winner in literature in 2015, Alexievich condemned Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, calling it an armed intervention.

    ———-

    “Belarusian Nobel Laureate Alexievich Cancels Event In Ukraine Amid Threats”; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; 08/09/2018

    “The Green Theater wrote on Facebook that Alexievich’s name was added to a list of “enemies of Ukraine” by the Ukrainian nationalist website Myrotvorets (Peacekeeper) four hours before Alexievich’s scheduled meeting with readers on August 8.”

    Yeah, it’s probably not safe to hold an event after a government-connected website declares you an enemy of Ukraine. Specifically, Myrotvorets accused Alexievich of “propagating interethnic discord and manipulating information important for society”, which is a rather ironic accusation coming from a site like Myrotvorets:


    The Myrotvorets site accused Alexievich of “propagating interethnic discord and manipulating information important for society” in a speech she delivered in Brooklyn, New York, in 2016.

    Although the site removed Alexievich’s name from the list several hours later, the writer and the theater decided to cancel the event “to avoid possible risks for Alexievich and the audience in the theater.”

    In her video statement, Alexievich called Myrotvorets’ statement about her anti-Ukrainian stance “absolutely far-fetched.”

    And while this isn’t mentioned in the above RFE/RL report, Myrotvorets is a government-backed hacking crew, as we’ve seen before.

    So, to get a better sense of Myrotvorets’s ties to the Ukrainian government, here’s an article from two years ago about a leak of information about journalists covering the war in Ukraine. And the leak of that list appeared to have been done by government-backed hackers and was supported by numerous people in government and nationalist groups (including the euromaidanpress.com). the charges against the journalists were basically that they had requested press passes from the separatists republics in Eastern Ukraine (they would hack the rebels and got correspondences with journalists). And, surprise!, that government-backed hacker group is Myrotvorets. Yep, Myrotovorets is basically a Ukrainian-government hacker collective.

    In May of 2016, several months before this indicident, there was the release of a journalist blacklist. Myrotvorets was behind that list too. As the article notes, Minister of Interior Affairs Arsen Avakov excused the actions by Myrotvorets, saying, “Those journalists passed their personal data to bandits from the occupiers’ regime.” And as the article also notes, Avakov’s far right adviser, Anton Geraschenko, is widely alleged to be the mentor of Myrotvorets:

    The Daily Beast

    Malicious Leaks Make Journalists Targets in Ukraine
    Security services and rabid nationalists in Kiev are working hard to intimidate reporters trying to do their job covering the Ukraine conflict. The consequences could be deadly.

    Anna Nemtsova
    08.08.16 1:00 AM ET

    MOSCOW — Reporters covering the conflict in Ukraine are in constant danger. At least six journalists have lost their lives in the two and a half years since the “hybrid” war there began. Dozens have been abducted, dragged away by masked men, and threatened with executions.

    On one of the early days of the war, on May 24, 2014, three journalists—Italian photographer Andy Rocchelli, his co-author, a human rights defender and journalist Andrei Mironov, and French reporter William Roguelon drove up the road outside of Andreyevka village, known for almost daily firefights between Ukrainian and pro-Russian rebel forces.

    They were seasoned correspondents. Mironov, 60, was a veteran of Afghan and Chechen wars.

    A few minutes after they stopped their car to interview civilians living on the front line, there were bursts of gunfire followed by the blast of a grenade launcher and a mortar barrage that left Roguelon wounded and Rocchelli and Mironov dead. The mortar had torn off Mironov’s head.

    Those of us covering the war then said “his number came up” in Ukraine as we cried over our friends, whose bodies were found in a ditch on the following day.

    More than two years later, the war in Ukraine goes on and on. And in the last couple weeks it has intensified: dozens of soldiers die or are injured in fresh clashes every week. Journalists are the witnesses to this carnage, documenting the casualties both among the military and civilians suffering from the conflict.

    But in the last few days journalists have been horrified, if not entirely surprised, to discover that many people in the Kiev government were out to intimidate them, or worse, for doing their jobs.

    A group of hackers known to be supported by Ukraine’s police and secret service leaked a digital archive containing personal photographs, copies of passports, accreditations, and other documents, as well as email addresses and personal correspondence between journalists covering the war in the Russia-backed part of Donbas, or Eastern Ukraine.

    Hackers called the leaked archive “The Dump.” It included private information about journalists from more than 30 international media outlets, including CNN, the BBC, the Associated Press, Al Jazeera, Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and The Daily Beast.

    Ukrainian nationalists and officials supporting the leak—and, disturbingly, there are many—claimed that for the last two years journalists covering the war on the rebel side were “collaborating with terrorists.”

    The hacked email inbox in question belonged to Tatyana Yegorova, a rebel administrator from the self-proclaimed Donetsk republic’s security service. Most of the leaked emails were asking Yegorova to give journalists accreditations and press passes. Without such credentials a reporter cannot pass through checkpoints at all, and even with that piece of paper issued by the rebels there were few guarantees of protection for reporters, who crossed checkpoints dozens of times every day, facing staring down the barrels of Kalashnikovs, facing detentions, abductions, and interrogations.

    An attempt by some factions in the Kiev government to blacklist so-called “collaborating” journalists did take place once before. In May a group affiliated with security agencies and Ukrainian nationalists, Myrotvorets, targeted the reporters by drawing up blacklists.

    Minister of Interior Affairs Arsen Avakov excused the actions by the Myrotvorets group, saying, “Those journalists passed their personal data to bandits from the occupiers’ regime.”

    Minister Avakov’s adviser, Anton Geraschenko (widely alleged to be the mentor of Myrotvorets) thanked it for leaking the personal data of dozens of journalists. But in May, unlike now, the reaction to the blacklisting was immediate and sharp: Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko condemned Myrotvorets and all its supporters. The Committee to Protect Journalists supported President Poroshenko and also supported the investigation by Ukrainian prosecutors into the website that put journalists at risk.

    This time the country’s top leadership remained silent, and by Sunday the silence had become very loud indeed.

    According to an article by the Associated Press it was the same group, Myrotvorets, that published the personal data of dozens of journalists. And as a result of this week’s leak, reporters have received numerous death threats on social media.

    In some environments, that might seem like just another troll-fest, with creeps coming out of the woodwork on their own, or on commission from others. But in Ukraine, this truly is a matter of life and death.

    “This attack on the media is very dangerous for local journalists, because after every publication we can see a wave of hate speech—local journalists already got messages with threats,” Polish journalist Pawel Pieniazek, who covered Ukraine for Political Critique told The Daily Beast. “These kinds of lists are creating an atmosphere of mistrust. I have already heard questions from Ukrainian soldiers about the leaks and my presence on these lists.”

    The Daily Beast interviewed journalists from nine intimidated publications who have watched in consternation as a group of Ukrainian state officials have waged a deliberate campaign against the freedom of press, inspired public hate against journalists, and jeopardized the security of reporters working in Ukraine.

    But it’s not just the collection of government trolls in Kiev who present a problem. If one downloads The Dump, a 2.2. GB file, one could find among the emails there many revealing comments among administrators in the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic as they talk with contempt about journalists and make lists of those denied press accreditation.

    There is even something in those emails about the U.S. presidential campaign of Donald Trump (who has been accused of late in the United States of being far too cozy with Russian President Vladimir Putin).

    One of the intimidated journalists, Piotr Andrusieczko from the Polish Gazeta Wyborcza, said that Dump was part of a larger campaign “by Ukraine’s law enforcement agencies and nationalists, who did not like it that journalists from all over the world covered both sides of the conflict.”

    Reporters who had been risking their lives crawling in trenches with both Ukrainian government and rebel soldiers, believed they were doing their jobs, being witnesses, telling the true story about the devastated areas during the two-year-long crisis. Many journalists had begun to report from Donetsk long before Kiev started referring to it as “terrorist controlled” territory.

    What Myrotvorets has done in recent days is to distribute the leaked emails while lambasting journalists for “cooperation with terrorists” just because they received press accreditations on the enemy side of the front line.

    Reporters and advocates for freedom of speech are concerned that this hate mongering could endanger journalists on either side of the front line.

    But to many in Ukraine, who clearly are not concerned about the future of freedom of the press, the condemnation and endangerment of journalists seems somehow appropriate.

    The leaked data was “a good thing,” said Alya Shandra, the managing editor of Euromaidanpress, an online magazine founded as a grassroots resource after the pro-EU revolution in 2014.

    Euromaidanpress media “strives to be the go-to bridge between Ukraine and the English-speaking world,” the magazine’s web site says.

    Shandra told us: “What Myrotvorets has done is very valuable. They showed how the propaganda machine works in Donetsk— that is much more important than any personal data of journalists,” she said. “Besides, journalists are not as endangered as Ukrainians attacked by the separatists army in the east,” Shandra said.

    What Shandra does not understand, it seems, is that her publication broke the country’s law, violated the rights of journalists it also humiliated the president of Ukraine, who very clearly condemned Myrotvorets at a news conference in Kyiv on June 3, for publishing the data of more than 4,000 journalists and for attacking reporters.

    What international media expected from President Poroshenko was to protect reporters, who clearly are under attack.

    Last month, somebody assassinated one of Ukraine’s most respected reporters, the founder of a school for journalism, Pavel Sheremet, right in the center of Kiev, a few meters away from the German embassy.

    Sheremet worked for a local radio and Ukrayinska Pravda (Ukrainian Truth), a newspaper.

    Earlier this month another Ukrainskaya Pravda journalist, Yekaterina Sergatskova, received threats from notorious right-wing nationalist Dmytro Korchinsky: after she published an interview about Ukrainian Security Services torturing prisoners. Sergatskova came to live in Ukraine from Crimea in 2014; the journalist renounced her Russian citizenship.

    President Petro Poroshenko personally granted Sergatskova her Ukrainian citizenship. “I received threats from Korchinsky, after I published an interview with a man about SBU torturing him in their prison in Kramatorsk; that was when somebody wrote to me on Facebook: ‘Die, creature,’” Sergatskova told The Daily Beast.

    “Korchinsky, who cooperates with state security agencies, threatened me on his Facebook page,” Diane Sergatskova said that the president should have not have granted me my citizenship, that I should not be working as a journalist in Ukraine.” Hramadske TV editor-in-chief Natalia Gumenyuk also expressed concerns: “We constantly receive threats and insults from officials.”

    On Friday, Euromaidanpress republished a link to the entire leaked archive on their website, again.

    “The leak is another example of how oblivious some individuals and groups are when they put journalists at risk in the conflict zone,” an AP journalist who asked not to be named told The Daily Beast. “The publication is a disgusting attempt to divide reporters into good and bad.”

    Human Rights Watch defenders recommended that journalists whose personal data was leaked fight for their rights through the legal system. “We are considering taking the abusers who published the leaked data to court,” says Timur Olevsky, a presenter at Current Time, a part of Radio Free Europe media group based in Prague. “The Ukrainian government is silent because the ministry of interior affairs obviously is involved this campaign against freedom of speech.”

    Clearly, nobody in Ukraine was serious about punishing the group intimidating journalists by distributing their personal information. The prosecutors’ investigation was forgotten and Myrotvorets was given a green light to continue attacking journalists working in Ukraine.

    Earlier this week, interior ministry advisor Anton Gerashchenko declared that from now on Myrotvorets would be a “registered media” outlet.

    “Minister Arsen Avakov and his advisor Gerashchenko are the worst representatives of Ukrainian officials,” said Oliver Carroll, a reporter who has covered the war extensively. “They are creating a smoke screen between the country’s society and government, and that smoke is the journalists.”

    ———-

    “Malicious Leaks Make Journalists Targets in Ukraine” by Anna Nemtsova; The Daily Beast; 08/08/2016

    “But in the last few days journalists have been horrified, if not entirely surprised, to discover that many people in the Kiev government were out to intimidate them, or worse, for doing their jobs.”

    That was the unfortunate news journalists had to report in Augsut of 2016: the Kiev government appears to be out to intimidate them.

    And a key part of that government intimidation campaign appears to revolve around the use of the Myrotvorets hacking collective:


    A group of hackers known to be supported by Ukraine’s police and secret service leaked a digital archive containing personal photographs, copies of passports, accreditations, and other documents, as well as email addresses and personal correspondence between journalists covering the war in the Russia-backed part of Donbas, or Eastern Ukraine.

    Hackers called the leaked archive “The Dump.” It included private information about journalists from more than 30 international media outlets, including CNN, the BBC, the Associated Press, Al Jazeera, Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and The Daily Beast.

    Ukrainian nationalists and officials supporting the leak—and, disturbingly, there are many—claimed that for the last two years journalists covering the war on the rebel side were “collaborating with terrorists.”

    This was a replay of a similar intimidation campaign against journalists conducted in May of 2016 that also involved Myrotvorets. Minister of Interior Affairs Arsen Avakov defended it at the time by saying, “Those journalists passed their personal data to bandits from the occupiers’ regime.” Keep in mind that the journalists were basically asking for press passes from the rebels. That was what landed them on the “enemies list”:


    An attempt by some factions in the Kiev government to blacklist so-called “collaborating” journalists did take place once before. In May a group affiliated with security agencies and Ukrainian nationalists, Myrotvorets, targeted the reporters by drawing up blacklists.

    Minister of Interior Affairs Arsen Avakov excused the actions by the Myrotvorets group, saying, “Those journalists passed their personal data to bandits from the occupiers’ regime.”

    And Avakov’s far right adviser, Anton Geraschenko, is wildly alleged to be the mentor of Myrotvorets:


    Minister Avakov’s adviser, Anton Geraschenko (widely alleged to be the mentor of Myrotvorets) thanked it for leaking the personal data of dozens of journalists. But in May, unlike now, the reaction to the blacklisting was immediate and sharp: Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko condemned Myrotvorets and all its supporters. The Committee to Protect Journalists supported President Poroshenko and also supported the investigation by Ukrainian prosecutors into the website that put journalists at risk.

    This time the country’s top leadership remained silent, and by Sunday the silence had become very loud indeed.

    And it was Myrotvorets that was behind the hack and subsequent release of that August 2016 “enemies list”:


    According to an article by the Associated Press it was the same group, Myrotvorets, that published the personal data of dozens of journalists. And as a result of this week’s leak, reporters have received numerous death threats on social media.

    Disturbingly, it’s not just Ukrainian government officials who supported Myrotvorets’s actions. Euromaidanpress, was fully supportive and even republished the blacklist:


    In some environments, that might seem like just another troll-fest, with creeps coming out of the woodwork on their own, or on commission from others. But in Ukraine, this truly is a matter of life and death.

    “This attack on the media is very dangerous for local journalists, because after every publication we can see a wave of hate speech—local journalists already got messages with threats,” Polish journalist Pawel Pieniazek, who covered Ukraine for Political Critique told The Daily Beast. “These kinds of lists are creating an atmosphere of mistrust. I have already heard questions from Ukrainian soldiers about the leaks and my presence on these lists.”

    The Daily Beast interviewed journalists from nine intimidated publications who have watched in consternation as a group of Ukrainian state officials have waged a deliberate campaign against the freedom of press, inspired public hate against journalists, and jeopardized the security of reporters working in Ukraine.

    What Myrotvorets has done in recent days is to distribute the leaked emails while lambasting journalists for “cooperation with terrorists” just because they received press accreditations on the enemy side of the front line.

    Reporters and advocates for freedom of speech are concerned that this hate mongering could endanger journalists on either side of the front line.

    But to many in Ukraine, who clearly are not concerned about the future of freedom of the press, the condemnation and endangerment of journalists seems somehow appropriate.

    The leaked data was “a good thing,” said Alya Shandra, the managing editor of Euromaidanpress, an online magazine founded as a grassroots resource after the pro-EU revolution in 2014.

    Euromaidanpress media “strives to be the go-to bridge between Ukraine and the English-speaking world,” the magazine’s web site says.

    Shandra told us: “What Myrotvorets has done is very valuable. They showed how the propaganda machine works in Donetsk— that is much more important than any personal data of journalists,” she said. “Besides, journalists are not as endangered as Ukrainians attacked by the separatists army in the east,” Shandra said.

    What Shandra does not understand, it seems, is that her publication broke the country’s law, violated the rights of journalists it also humiliated the president of Ukraine, who very clearly condemned Myrotvorets at a news conference in Kyiv on June 3, for publishing the data of more than 4,000 journalists and for attacking reporters.

    What international media expected from President Poroshenko was to protect reporters, who clearly are under attack.

    On Friday, Euromaidanpress republished a link to the entire leaked archive on their website, again.

    “The leak is another example of how oblivious some individuals and groups are when they put journalists at risk in the conflict zone,” an AP journalist who asked not to be named told The Daily Beast. “The publication is a disgusting attempt to divide reporters into good and bad.”

    And, of course, we can’t forget that this all happened a month after the assassination of Pavel Sheremet:


    Last month, somebody assassinated one of Ukraine’s most respected reporters, the founder of a school for journalism, Pavel Sheremet, right in the center of Kiev, a few meters away from the German embassy.

    Sheremet worked for a local radio and Ukrayinska Pravda (Ukrainian Truth), a newspaper.

    Keep in mind that evidence has subsequently come out indicating the Ukrainian intelligence services were behind Sheremet’s assassination.

    So that’s all a big reminder that the government-backed intimidation campaign against journalists in Ukraine using the Myrotvorets hackers continues. Although it’s unclear if any actual hacking took place in this latest incident against Svetlana Alexievich. They’re apparently just jumping straight to compiling enemies lists at this point.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | August 9, 2018, 1:30 pm
  3. @Pterrafractyl–

    Something worth keeping in mind in connection with this excellent comment:

    As discussed in FTR #981, Anton Geraschenko is also a key figure in trafficking the “Russian hacks” meme at the heart of the Russia-Gate psy-op.

    http://spitfirelist.com/for-the-record/ftr-981-the-ukrainian-fascist-foundation-of-the-russia-gate-psy-op/

    Best,

    Dave Emory

    Posted by Dave Emory | August 10, 2018, 2:24 pm
  4. Here’s the latest string of news that shockingly unshocking at this point in Ukraine’s descent into the official embrace of Nazism: the June 30, 941 declaration of an independent Ukrainian state by Stepan Bandera was officially celebrated in an exhibit in the Ukrainian Rada recently. The organizers of the even were as follows:
    1. The All-Ukrainian charitable Sobornist foundation
    2. International charitable Jaroslav Stezko foundation. Jaroslav Stezko, of course, led the OUN from 1968 until his death. Stezko’s personal secretary, Roman Zvarych, became the spokesman for the neo-Nazi Azov battalion.
    3. MP Jury Shuchevich. Jury Shukhevych, happens to be the son of Roman Shukhevych – who led the SS Nachtigall battalion in a pogram against the Jews of Lviv also starting on June 30, 1941.

    The exhibition includes blown-up images from pro-Nazi newspapers dated June 1941 heralding “the Act of establishing the Ukrainian state”, along with large images of Bandera, Shukhevych, and Stezko who all are presented as heroes. Also, many of the documents at the exhibition openly glorify Nazism.

    As the article notes, asked recently by the Kyiv Post if it’s not “too much glorification of the Ukrainian nationalists?”, Jury Shukhevych replied by bringing up Jews who turned in other Jews: “It’s a very complicated question which has to be examined in full detail. But what about those Jews? Those ones who were in Judenrats, and who were after their own people in ghettos? I saw it with my own eyes. But Jews don’t like to talk about it.” Yes, when asked about the role people like his father played in the holocaust, Jury appeared to try and deflect blame onto the Jews. That’s the kind of guy he is.

    The article also note that a similar exhibition called Fighters for the Ukrainian State opened at the National History of Ukraine Museum in Kiev at the same time.

    So the Ukrainian Rada had the son of the guy who led a WWII pogram against the Jew of Lviv organize an exhibit held in the parliamentary building itself to celebrate the declaration of independence that took on the same day the pogram started. And that was just one of the exhibits officially glorifying Ukraine’s Nazi collaborator heroes. Which is more or less what we should expect from Ukraine’s government at this point:

    IsraelNationalNews.com

    Exhibition in Ukrainian parliament glorifies Nazi collaborators

    Months after hundreds march streets of Lvov commemorating 75th anniversary of SS division’s creation.
    Mordechai Sones, 08/07/18 20:05

    An exhibition inside the Ukrainian parliament, the Rada last week glorified the leading Ukrainian Nazi collaborators of World War II.

    Information on the exhibition is available on the Ukraine Parliament’s official website in Ukrainian and Russian, but on the Rada’s English-language website the information is absent.

    The Ukrainian site says, “A special exhibition has been organized in the parliament of Ukraine in Kiev. The dates of the exhibition: July 3- July 6, 2018. The name of the exhibition: Celebrating the Restoration of the Ukrainian Statehood, June 30, 1941-2018.

    “The organizers of the exhibition: All-Ukrainian charitable Sobornist foundation, International charitable Jaroslav Stezko foundation, MP Jury Shuchevich.”

    Jaroslav Stezko was leader of Stepan Bandera’s Organization of the Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) military brigades from 1968 until his death. A fervent Ukrainian Nazi collaborator, in 1941 during the Nazi German invasion of the Soviet Union, he was self-proclaimed temporary head of the ostensibly independent Ukrainian government declared by Stepan Bandera. Stetsko was the head of the Anti-Bolshevik Bloc of Nations from the time of its foundation until 1986, the year of his death.

    MP Jury Shuchevich is the octogenarian son of Roman Shuchevich, who was the one of the leaders of the infamous the SS Nachtigall battalion. SS Captain Roman Shuchevich was awarded the Nazi Iron Cross for his “exploits” during the Second World War in Ukraine and was an Abwehr agent from 1926.

    “The fact that the son of the political leader of the SS Nachtigall battalion and the bearer of the Nazi Iron Cross is the most respected – according to Ukrainian authorities – member of their parliament is telling all by itself,” wrote co-founder and President of the Rogatchi Foundation Dr. Inna Rogatchi. “He spent many decades in the Soviet Gulag and is clearly motivated against anything Russian – he even added a new Ukrainian name to his existing name of Jury. But it’s ridiculous to see how a personal vendetta has driven the policy of a country with a population of 45 million.

    “Recognized in his country as a political heavy-weight, Jury Shuchevich was asked recently by the very pro-governmental Kyiv Post English-language newspaper, ‘is it not too much glorification of the Ukrainian nationalists, with the historically known record of their activities?’ The senior MP of the Ukrainian parliament responded: ‘It’s a very complicated question which has to be examined in full detail. But what about those Jews? Those ones who were in Judenrats, and who were after their own people in ghettos? I saw it with my own eyes. But Jews don’t like to talk about it’.”

    The exhibition shows blown-up images from pro-Nazi newspapers dated June 1941 heralding “the Act of establishing the Ukrainian state”, after Nazi Germany occupied Ukraine. There are also enlarged images of documents issued by the Ukrainian Nazi collaborating bodies at the time, and large portraits of the leading Ukrainian Nazi collaborators – Bandera, Shuhevich, Stezko, and Konovaletz who all are presented as heroes. The colors of the exhibition are those of the current Ukrainian flag.

    The exhibition’s stand features the following text from the Act of the Establishing of the Ukrainian State dated June 30, 1941:

    “3. Newly established Ukrainian State will closely co-operate with National Socialist Great Germany under the leadership of its Leader Adolf Hitler building the New Order in Europe and the world”.

    This text has become the classic document on the Nazi character of Ukrainian nationalists and their bodies.

    Many other documents at the exhibition openly glorify Nazism.

    At the exhibition’s opening, current leaders of Ukraine’s nationalistic organizations spoke, along with openly pro-Nazi MP Jury Shuchevich, son of the SS captain and the commander of the Nachtigall division Roman Shuchevich.

    In his opening speech, MP Jury Schuchevich said: “The fact of us having an independence today, in truth, is a huge cornerstone of the edifice called today the Ukrainian State. That huge cornerstone was laid into this edifice by this very struggle (of the Ukrainian nationalists) and by these very people (Ukrainian Nazi-collaborators), and I beseech you all very much to visit this exhibition which the Congress of the Ukrainian nationalists is carrying on in commemoration of this date.” In any other official sources the participation of the pro-Nazi Ukrainian Nationalists Congress is not mentioned.

    The official site of the Ukraine Parliament said: “In the beginning of the Second World War, OUN under Stepan Bandera’s leadership started preparing for re-establishing Ukraine’s independence. As the German-Bolshevic War (Nazi term for WWII used today by Ukraine’s Parliament) ignited, mobile OUN groups went to Ukraine to establish there Ukrainian power.

    “On June 30th, Nachtigall division under the command of Roman Shuchevich and OUN group under the command of Jaroslav Stazko entered Lvov with their first aim to announce re-establishing Ukrainian statehood. The Act of re-establishing Ukrainian statehood declared the independent policy of Ukraine. By it, it has been stated to the international community that the Ukrainian people is content neither with an imperial occupation, nor with a communist one … it will continue its struggle to the end.”

    Upon entering Lvov, the Nachtigall division and OUN forces initiated and conducted the unprecedentedly horrific massacre of Lvov’s Jews known in history as Lvov massacre of June-July, 1941 in which at least seven-thousand Jews were barbarically murdered. The exhibition in Ukraine’s Parliament opened on July 3rd, the peak day of the horrendous Lvov massacre, the one of the most terrible genocides of the twentieth century.

    At the same time, a similar exhibition called Fighters for the Ukrainian State opened at the National History of Ukraine Museum in Kiev. That exhibition was ceremonially visited by Vice Prime Minister Vyacheslav Kirilenko, as stated on the Ukraine government’s official website, who said: “It’s only relatively recently when we started to get familiar with history works, art works celebrating UPA (Ukrainian Patriotic Army, Nazi collaborators and war criminals). It was a long way for Ukraine to recognize UPA, which is our common history.”

    Dr. Rogatchi responded to the exhibition: “Just imagine that inside the Bundestag today there would be a non-critical exhibition demonstrating in full seriousness and with pride the Third Reich newspapers from 1941 on colorful big stands with captions commenting that those slogans, policies, events, documents, and people who perpetrated them were all ‘assuring and strengthening Germany’s Independence and statehood.

    “Imagine the same thing at any parliament of any European country or 90% of the countries world-wide, for that matter. Imagine this being done at the United Nations or UNESCO. They’d be called lunatics, quite correctly.

    “But this is exactly what’s going on today inside the Ukraine Parliament, and the world’s leaders are shy to condemn. Or perhaps they’re unaware of it. After all, there were ‘just’ three big stands for ‘just’ four days, and the exhibition wasn’t public, it was inside the Parliament, and one needs journalist accreditation to get inside to be honored to view this sheer Nazi salutation.

    “I’d like to hear the comment and reaction of Chancellor Merkel, the big patron of the current Ukraine and its leadership to that open glorification of Hitler and Nazism as displayed in the parliament of Ukraine. And I hope the State of Israel won’t tolerate such open declaration of pro-Nazi sympathies by the parliament of Ukraine.

    “By organizing and exhibiting this open glorification of Nazism, and identifying Ukrainian statehood with it as done in this exhibition, the Ukrainian legislating body and government represented by its Vice Prime Minister who visited the exhibition with a supportive speech, declared to the world who they are: Followers of the Nazis. Period. And they should be treated like that, world-wide and officially. They asked for it themselves. Never before have the Ukrainian pro-Nazis gone that far. When given free reign they enjoy it. And Europe and the rest of the world stay silent, again. Not one or another Nazi-glorifying exhibition in the modern-day Ukraine, which is a daily reality there, but Europe’s and the world’s ongoing numbness regarding it is outrageous and intolerable,” Rogatchi said.

    ———-

    “Exhibition in Ukrainian parliament glorifies Nazi collaborators” by Mordechai Sones; IsraelNationalNews.com; 08/07/2018

    “The Ukrainian site says, “A special exhibition has been organized in the parliament of Ukraine in Kiev. The dates of the exhibition: July 3- July 6, 2018. The name of the exhibition: Celebrating the Restoration of the Ukrainian Statehood, June 30, 1941-2018.”

    It’s an official celebration of that June 30th, 1941, declaration of statehood. A declaration that happened to be declared by the leading Nazi collaborating ‘Ukrainian nationalists’ at the time. So it should come as no surprise that this was organized by the Jaroslav Stezko foundation and Jury Shukhevych, son of Roman Shukhevych:


    “The organizers of the exhibition: All-Ukrainian charitable Sobornist foundation, International charitable Jaroslav Stezko foundation, MP Jury Shuchevich.”

    Jaroslav Stezko was leader of Stepan Bandera’s Organization of the Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) military brigades from 1968 until his death. A fervent Ukrainian Nazi collaborator, in 1941 during the Nazi German invasion of the Soviet Union, he was self-proclaimed temporary head of the ostensibly independent Ukrainian government declared by Stepan Bandera. Stetsko was the head of the Anti-Bolshevik Bloc of Nations from the time of its foundation until 1986, the year of his death.

    MP Jury Shuchevich is the octogenarian son of Roman Shuchevich, who was the one of the leaders of the infamous the SS Nachtigall battalion. SS Captain Roman Shuchevich was awarded the Nazi Iron Cross for his “exploits” during the Second World War in Ukraine and was an Abwehr agent from 1926.

    “The fact that the son of the political leader of the SS Nachtigall battalion and the bearer of the Nazi Iron Cross is the most respected – according to Ukrainian authorities – member of their parliament is telling all by itself,” wrote co-founder and President of the Rogatchi Foundation Dr. Inna Rogatchi. “He spent many decades in the Soviet Gulag and is clearly motivated against anything Russian – he even added a new Ukrainian name to his existing name of Jury. But it’s ridiculous to see how a personal vendetta has driven the policy of a country with a population of 45 million.

    This would be the same Jury Shukhevych who recently deflected questions about the role of his father and these other ‘heroes’ in carrying out the Holocaust by blaming the Jews for their own slaughter:


    “Recognized in his country as a political heavy-weight, Jury Shuchevich was asked recently by the very pro-governmental Kyiv Post English-language newspaper, ‘is it not too much glorification of the Ukrainian nationalists, with the historically known record of their activities?’ The senior MP of the Ukrainian parliament responded: ‘It’s a very complicated question which has to be examined in full detail. But what about those Jews? Those ones who were in Judenrats, and who were after their own people in ghettos? I saw it with my own eyes. But Jews don’t like to talk about it’.”

    And the exhibit doesn’t just celebrate these prominent Nazi collaborators. It appears to also contain numerous documents that openly glorify Nazism:


    The exhibition shows blown-up images from pro-Nazi newspapers dated June 1941 heralding “the Act of establishing the Ukrainian state”, after Nazi Germany occupied Ukraine. There are also enlarged images of documents issued by the Ukrainian Nazi collaborating bodies at the time, and large portraits of the leading Ukrainian Nazi collaborators – Bandera, Shuhevich, Stezko, and Konovaletz who all are presented as heroes. The colors of the exhibition are those of the current Ukrainian flag.

    The exhibition’s stand features the following text from the Act of the Establishing of the Ukrainian State dated June 30, 1941:

    “3. Newly established Ukrainian State will closely co-operate with National Socialist Great Germany under the leadership of its Leader Adolf Hitler building the New Order in Europe and the world”.

    This text has become the classic document on the Nazi character of Ukrainian nationalists and their bodies.

    Many other documents at the exhibition openly glorify Nazism.

    On the plus side, the fact that Jury’s opening speech included a plea for the parliament to continue commemorating this date going forward suggests that this isn’t yet an annual occurrence. Of course, there’s no reason at this point to assume that it won’t be an annual celebration:


    At the exhibition’s opening, current leaders of Ukraine’s nationalistic organizations spoke, along with openly pro-Nazi MP Jury Shuchevich, son of the SS captain and the commander of the Nachtigall division Roman Shuchevich.

    In his opening speech, MP Jury Schuchevich said: “The fact of us having an independence today, in truth, is a huge cornerstone of the edifice called today the Ukrainian State. That huge cornerstone was laid into this edifice by this very struggle (of the Ukrainian nationalists) and by these very people (Ukrainian Nazi-collaborators), and I beseech you all very much to visit this exhibition which the Congress of the Ukrainian nationalists is carrying on in commemoration of this date.” In any other official sources the participation of the pro-Nazi Ukrainian Nationalists Congress is not mentioned.

    Adding to the historic revisionism here, the parliament’s official website actually used the Nazi term (the German-Bolshevic War) to refer to WWII. It’s description of the June 30th actions by the Nachtigall battalion also just happens to make no mention of the Jewish pogram unleashed by that same group on that very day. And the exhibit opened on July 3rd, the anniversary of the peak day of violence of the Lviv massacre:


    The official site of the Ukraine Parliament said: “In the beginning of the Second World War, OUN under Stepan Bandera’s leadership started preparing for re-establishing Ukraine’s independence. As the German-Bolshevic War (Nazi term for WWII used today by Ukraine’s Parliament) ignited, mobile OUN groups went to Ukraine to establish there Ukrainian power.

    “On June 30th, Nachtigall division under the command of Roman Shuchevich and OUN group under the command of Jaroslav Stazko entered Lvov with their first aim to announce re-establishing Ukrainian statehood. The Act of re-establishing Ukrainian statehood declared the independent policy of Ukraine. By it, it has been stated to the international community that the Ukrainian people is content neither with an imperial occupation, nor with a communist one … it will continue its struggle to the end.”

    Upon entering Lvov, the Nachtigall division and OUN forces initiated and conducted the unprecedentedly horrific massacre of Lvov’s Jews known in history as Lvov massacre of June-July, 1941 in which at least seven-thousand Jews were barbarically murdered. The exhibition in Ukraine’s Parliament opened on July 3rd, the peak day of the horrendous Lvov massacre, the one of the most terrible genocides of the twentieth century.

    Oh, and that was just one of the exhibitions of this nature to open around this time. The National History of Ukraine Museum in Kiev also had an exhibit opening about “Righter for the Ukrainian State”, which appears to feature art works celebrating the UPA:


    At the same time, a similar exhibition called Fighters for the Ukrainian State opened at the National History of Ukraine Museum in Kiev. That exhibition was ceremonially visited by Vice Prime Minister Vyacheslav Kirilenko, as stated on the Ukraine government’s official website, who said: “It’s only relatively recently when we started to get familiar with history works, art works celebrating UPA (Ukrainian Patriotic Army, Nazi collaborators and war criminals). It was a long way for Ukraine to recognize UPA, which is our common history.”

    As one observer aptly put it, it would be like the Bundestag opening an exhibition celebrating the Third Reich. It’s literally exactly like that. Except no one seems to care in this instance:


    Dr. Rogatchi responded to the exhibition: “Just imagine that inside the Bundestag today there would be a non-critical exhibition demonstrating in full seriousness and with pride the Third Reich newspapers from 1941 on colorful big stands with captions commenting that those slogans, policies, events, documents, and people who perpetrated them were all ‘assuring and strengthening Germany’s Independence and statehood.

    “Imagine the same thing at any parliament of any European country or 90% of the countries world-wide, for that matter. Imagine this being done at the United Nations or UNESCO. They’d be called lunatics, quite correctly.

    “But this is exactly what’s going on today inside the Ukraine Parliament, and the world’s leaders are shy to condemn. Or perhaps they’re unaware of it. After all, there were ‘just’ three big stands for ‘just’ four days, and the exhibition wasn’t public, it was inside the Parliament, and one needs journalist accreditation to get inside to be honored to view this sheer Nazi salutation.

    “I’d like to hear the comment and reaction of Chancellor Merkel, the big patron of the current Ukraine and its leadership to that open glorification of Hitler and Nazism as displayed in the parliament of Ukraine. And I hope the State of Israel won’t tolerate such open declaration of pro-Nazi sympathies by the parliament of Ukraine.

    “By organizing and exhibiting this open glorification of Nazism, and identifying Ukrainian statehood with it as done in this exhibition, the Ukrainian legislating body and government represented by its Vice Prime Minister who visited the exhibition with a supportive speech, declared to the world who they are: Followers of the Nazis. Period. And they should be treated like that, world-wide and officially. They asked for it themselves. Never before have the Ukrainian pro-Nazis gone that far. When given free reign they enjoy it. And Europe and the rest of the world stay silent, again. Not one or another Nazi-glorifying exhibition in the modern-day Ukraine, which is a daily reality there, but Europe’s and the world’s ongoing numbness regarding it is outrageous and intolerable,” Rogatchi said.

    So that was how the Ukrainian parliament celebrated Ukraine’s Nazi collaborator fascist military units back in July. Here’s how they’re celebrating them in August: “Glory to Ukraine! – Glory to the Heroes!”, the same slogan used by the UPA, is about to become the official slogan of the Ukrainian army in a few days:

    IsraelNationalNews.com

    Nazi collaborator greeting becomes official Ukraine army salute

    ‘Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the Heroes! These words and this greeting will become Armed Forces of Ukraine official military greeting.’

    Mordechai Sones, 16/08/18 18:28

    August 24th, Ukrainian Independence Day, will see a ceremony introducing the country’s new official army salute, as prescribed by Ukraine’s Presidential decree: Glory to Ukraine! – Glory to the Heroes!

    “We have consulted with the Minister of Defense, National Security and Defense Council, Government and I have decided that starting from August 24 these words will be heard for the first time as part of the official military parade ceremony on the Independence Day of Ukraine,” Petro Poroshenko was quoted saying on the Ukraine President’s official site.

    Glory to Ukraine! – Glory to the Heroes! is a slogan of the UPA, the Ukraine Rebel Army who fought on the side of the Nazis. The slogans, their origin, and history are well known in Ukraine, although the President’s website does not make mention of these. Present neo-Nazi Ukrainian military formations established by order of the Ukrainian authorities appropriated the slogan from the end of 2013 onward. Now, the Ukrainian Nazi collaborator’s greeting will become the official salute in that country’s army.

    The Head of State also noted the new military greetings will be enshrined officially in the documents after the beginning of the Verkhovna Rada‘s regular session and Parliament’s corresponding decision, as it requires changes in particular to statutes of all Armed Forces of Ukraine troops. But after completion of proper procedures, “these words and this greeting will become the official military greetings of the Armed Forces of Ukraine”.

    “When the Croats use Ustasha salutes, it’s a source of concern,” said Swedish historian Singapore University senior visiting fellow Per Rudling. “When Ukrainians use the OUN salute it needs to be seen in a different context, and a different standard need to be employed.”

    In Germany and Austria, as in many other countries, the mere mention of such slogans qualify one for criminal punishment. Ukrainians are proud of their Nazi associations today and are enshrining them as official policy.

    “If a country adopts pro-Nazi slogans of criminal forces, murderers who committed numerous crimes of genocide, that country is doomed,” said co-founder and President of the Rogatchi Foundation Dr. Inna Rogatchi. “But the world shouldn’t turn a blind eye to this, as it repeatedly does with regard to Ukraine.”

    ———

    “Nazi collaborator greeting becomes official Ukraine army salute” by Mordechai Sones; IsraelNationalNews.com; 08/16/2018

    “August 24th, Ukrainian Independence Day, will see a ceremony introducing the country’s new official army salute, as prescribed by Ukraine’s Presidential decree: Glory to Ukraine! – Glory to the Heroes!

    It’s official. Or at least it will be official soon: The slogan of UPA Nazi collaborators is going to be the official slogan of the Ukrainian army:


    “We have consulted with the Minister of Defense, National Security and Defense Council, Government and I have decided that starting from August 24 these words will be heard for the first time as part of the official military parade ceremony on the Independence Day of Ukraine,” Petro Poroshenko was quoted saying on the Ukraine President’s official site.

    Glory to Ukraine! – Glory to the Heroes! is a slogan of the UPA, the Ukraine Rebel Army who fought on the side of the Nazis. The slogans, their origin, and history are well known in Ukraine, although the President’s website does not make mention of these. Present neo-Nazi Ukrainian military formations established by order of the Ukrainian authorities appropriated the slogan from the end of 2013 onward. Now, the Ukrainian Nazi collaborator’s greeting will become the official salute in that country’s army.

    So how is the world going to respond to this latest official insult to history? Well, the way Swedish historian Per Anders Rudling puts it, when, for instance, the Croations start using Ustasha salutes that’s obviously a source of concern. But when Ukraine starts officially using OUN-B and UPA slogans, “it needs to be seen in a different context, and a different standard need to be employed”:


    “When the Croats use Ustasha salutes, it’s a source of concern,” said Swedish historian Singapore University senior visiting fellow Per Rudling. “When Ukrainians use the OUN salute it needs to be seen in a different context, and a different standard need to be employed.”

    In Germany and Austria, as in many other countries, the mere mention of such slogans qualify one for criminal punishment. Ukrainians are proud of their Nazi associations today and are enshrining them as official policy.

    “If a country adopts pro-Nazi slogans of criminal forces, murderers who committed numerous crimes of genocide, that country is doomed,” said co-founder and President of the Rogatchi Foundation Dr. Inna Rogatchi. “But the world shouldn’t turn a blind eye to this, as it repeatedly does with regard to Ukraine.”

    It would be nice of Rudling expanding on what exactly he meant by that, because it sounds like he’s suggesting that this context (a civil war and conflict with Russia) makes it fine for Ukraine to officially exalt its Nazi collaborating/sympathizing historic figures who perpetrated the Holocaust in Ukraine. And yet, if we assume Rudling was indeed asserting that it’s ok if Ukraine embraces Nazis because of its current conflicts, it’s hard to ignore the reality that this appears to largely be the attitude of the almost every government in world at this point. For some reason almost everyone is totally cool with Ukraine going full Nazi.

    At the same time, it’s worth keeping in mind that one European country after another has been openly embracing the far right in recent years with a pretty muted outcry overall. So in that sense, Ukraine isn’t actually getting treated by a different standard. It’s the same standard of the world not caring when governments officially embrace the far right. Ukraine is just further along in that embrace.

    And don’t forget that the Croatian soccer team actually kicked off a member who shouted the “Glory to Ukraine” slogan during a World Cup match against Russia. This is, of course, the same team that invited a pro-Ustasha pop singer to its World Cup celebrations. So, at this point, the Croatian soccer team, which openly embraced a fascist pop star is still more responsible regarding the condemnation of creeping fascism than most governments around the world. This is where we are.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | August 21, 2018, 2:41 pm
  5. The government of the Lviv regional council just passed a moratorium on all Russian-language books, films, and songs in Lviv province. The move prompted no shortage of outcry from various diplomats. Canada’s ambassador called it discriminatory and just plain dumb while the UK’s ambassador agreed with Canada’s ambassador and declared, “I couldn’t agree more. C’mon Lviv oblast, you’re better than this… (And I say this as a fan/student of both the Ukrainian and Russian languages) #tolerance #diversity.” And as the article notes, it is indeed a genuinely discriminatory law given that Russia is still widely spoken in Lviv province. So it looks like the Ukrainian government just pulled another ethnonationalist stunt one would expect from a bunch of Nazis and got the predictable “stop acting like this because that just plays into Russia’s narrative” response from Ukraine’s Western backers.

    As the article also notes, the Lviv councilors backing the bill called on other regions to take similar measures, and said they planned to appeal to Ukraine’s parliament to introduce a bill to ban Russian content across the country:

    Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

    Critics Blast Lviv’s Ban On Russian-Language Culture

    Christopher Miller
    September 20, 2018 14:52 GMT

    KYIV — It’s a measure some Ukrainians claim is necessary to fight Russia’s potent “hybrid warfare.”

    But critics, including Western diplomats in Kyiv, are blasting a moratorium in western Ukraine on all Russian-language books, films, and songs as bigoted and misguided.

    Fifty-seven of 84 regional councilors in Lviv, regarded by some as Ukraine’s cultural capital, approved the regionwide ban on September 18.

    The response has been largely muted within Ukraine, where there are doubts about how energetically it will be enforced, but some influential outsiders are questioning the move.

    Canada’s ambassador to Ukraine, Roman Waschuk, responded by calling it “just plain dumb.”

    “The Lviv oblast ban as formulated is narrow-minded, discriminatory and #justplaindumb. And I say this as a diasporic native speaker of Ukrainian, and consistent advocate of affirmative action for cultural products in that language — but also #diversity,” he tweeted.

    While Ukrainian is the predominant language in western Ukraine — especially in Lviv, a province with around 2.5 million residents — Russian is still widely spoken there.

    Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 and has backed a continuing separatist conflict in the country’s eastern Donbas region. Moscow has cracked down on pro-Ukrainian activists and closed Ukrainian-language schools in Crimea, and more than 10,300 people have been killed in the conflict, which drags on despite two peace deals and multiple attempts at a cease-fire.

    According to the motion, a copy of which was published on the council’s website, the moratorium aims to “overcome the consequences of prolonged linguistic Russification” and will remain in place “until the [Russian] occupation of Ukrainian territories comes to an end.”

    ‘Playing Into Moscow’s Hands’

    Moscow justified its invasion of Ukraine by claiming that the government that came to power in Kyiv after street unrest sent Kremlin-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych into exile was discriminating against Ukraine’s Russian-speaking population.

    Some of Kyiv’s subsequent measures appear to have played into its critics’ hands. In September, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed into law a controversial bill that made Ukrainian the required language of study in state schools from the fifth grade on. The bill still allows students to study their native languages as a separate subject.

    Some Ukrainian politicians expressed their discontent, including Yevgeniy Murayev, a lawmaker from the For Life opposition party. “As politicians and members of parliament are supposed to do, I speak the state language [Ukrainian] and use it to communicate in matters of the state,” he wrote on Facebook.

    “But the rest of the time I do not use it in principle,” he added, as a sign of protest against what he called the government’s “cultural war.”

    The passage of the moratorium on Russian-language content came as the city of Lviv opened its 25th annual book forum, the slogan for which is “Market of Freedom.”

    Judith Gough, the British ambassador to Kyiv, joined Waschuk in blasting the move, which she suggested was intolerant. “I couldn’t agree more. C’mon Lviv oblast, you’re better than this… (And I say this as a fan/student of both the Ukrainian and Russian languages) #tolerance #diversity.”

    ‘How Things Have Changed’

    Despite the moratorium, it is unlikely that Russian books will disappear from store shelves or Russian films will be inaccessible, especially given their availability online.

    The council’s motion does not explain how it plans to enforce the moratorium.

    The Lviv councilors who supported the measure called on other regions to take similar measures, adding that they planned to appeal to the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament, to introduce a bill to ban Russian content across the country.

    Ukraine has already banned popular Russian social networks and blocked the import of several Russian books.

    It landed in hot water when a history of the Battle of Stalingrad authored by British historian and bestselling author Antony Beevor was discovered to be among them.

    Lamenting the decision of the Lviv regional council and perhaps fearing a turning point in Ukraine, Yuliya Komska, the Ukrainian-born author of books about the Cold War and an associate professor of German at Dartmouth University, recalled a time when there was support for language diversity from west to east. It showed itself when a Yanukovych-era law allowing minorities to introduce their languages in regions where they represented more than 10 percent of the population looked set to be repealed in February 2014, she explained in a tweet.

    “My hometown, Lviv, switched to Russian for a day, in protest. Donetsk, then unoccupied, to Ukrainian,” she wrote. “Things couldn’t be more different now.”

    ———-

    “Critics Blast Lviv’s Ban On Russian-Language Culture ” by Christopher Miller; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; 09/20/2018

    “But critics, including Western diplomats in Kyiv, are blasting a moratorium in western Ukraine on all Russian-language books, films, and songs as bigoted and misguided.”

    Gee, that’s not wildly divisive an inflammatory or anything: a complete ban on all Russian-language books, films, and songs. This was backed by 57 of the 84 regions councilors and the response within Urkaine has been largely muted despite the fact that Russian is still widely used in the region:


    Fifty-seven of 84 regional councilors in Lviv, regarded by some as Ukraine’s cultural capital, approved the regionwide ban on September 18.

    The response has been largely muted within Ukraine, where there are doubts about how energetically it will be enforced, but some influential outsiders are questioning the move.

    While Ukrainian is the predominant language in western Ukraine — especially in Lviv, a province with around 2.5 million residents — Russian is still widely spoken there.

    The diplomatic response was the typical “see no evil, hear no evil, suddenly call out evil when it’s too obvious to ignore, go back to not seeing or hearing evil” kind of response we should expect at this point:


    Canada’s ambassador to Ukraine, Roman Waschuk, responded by calling it “just plain dumb.”

    “The Lviv oblast ban as formulated is narrow-minded, discriminatory and #justplaindumb. And I say this as a diasporic native speaker of Ukrainian, and consistent advocate of affirmative action for cultural products in that language — but also #diversity,” he tweeted.

    Judith Gough, the British ambassador to Kyiv, joined Waschuk in blasting the move, which she suggested was intolerant. “I couldn’t agree more. C’mon Lviv oblast, you’re better than this… (And I say this as a fan/student of both the Ukrainian and Russian languages) #tolerance #diversity.”

    And as we should also expect, it’s being frames as “playing into Moscow’s hands”, as opposed to simply being a reflection of the extremist ethnonationalist that has gripped much of the nation and stands in the way of an meaningful peace and reconciliation process:


    ‘Playing Into Moscow’s Hands’

    Moscow justified its invasion of Ukraine by claiming that the government that came to power in Kyiv after street unrest sent Kremlin-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych into exile was discriminating against Ukraine’s Russian-speaking population.

    Some of Kyiv’s subsequent measures appear to have played into its critics’ hands. In September, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed into law a controversial bill that made Ukrainian the required language of study in state schools from the fifth grade on. The bill still allows students to study their native languages as a separate subject.

    Some Ukrainian politicians expressed their discontent, including Yevgeniy Murayev, a lawmaker from the For Life opposition party. “As politicians and members of parliament are supposed to do, I speak the state language [Ukrainian] and use it to communicate in matters of the state,” he wrote on Facebook.

    “But the rest of the time I do not use it in principle,” he added, as a sign of protest against what he called the government’s “cultural war.”

    The passage of the moratorium on Russian-language content came as the city of Lviv opened its 25th annual book forum, the slogan for which is “Market of Freedom.”

    “Some of Kyiv’s subsequent measures appear to have played into its critics’ hands.” LOL! Yeah, some of the stuff Kyiv does sure plays into its critics’ hands. Like making Andriy Parubiy – a co-founder of of Ukraine’s National Socialist party in the 90’s – the current speaker of the parliament. That definitely ‘played into Moscow’s hands’. It’s funny how these far right ‘oopsies’ keep happening.

    And note how the law the Lviv regional council passed states that the ban will remain in effect “until the [Russian] occupation of Ukrainian territories comes to an end”:


    Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 and has backed a continuing separatist conflict in the country’s eastern Donbas region. Moscow has cracked down on pro-Ukrainian activists and closed Ukrainian-language schools in Crimea, and more than 10,300 people have been killed in the conflict, which drags on despite two peace deals and multiple attempts at a cease-fire.

    According to the motion, a copy of which was published on the council’s website, the moratorium aims to “overcome the consequences of prolonged linguistic Russification” and will remain in place “until the [Russian] occupation of Ukrainian territories comes to an end.”

    Keep in mind that these moves that appear to explicitely be targeting Russian speakers were some of the main catalysts for generating popular support for the separatists movements in the first place. So the Lviv regional council just passed a law that expires once a lasting peace is achieved while simultaneously making that lasting peace a lot less likely.

    And this highly inflammatory law might not be limited to the Lviv region. Its backers are already calling on other regions to take similar measures and are pushing to make it a national law:


    ‘How Things Have Changed’

    Despite the moratorium, it is unlikely that Russian books will disappear from store shelves or Russian films will be inaccessible, especially given their availability online.

    The council’s motion does not explain how it plans to enforce the moratorium.

    The Lviv councilors who supported the measure called on other regions to take similar measures, adding that they planned to appeal to the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament, to introduce a bill to ban Russian content across the country.

    Ukraine has already banned popular Russian social networks and blocked the import of several Russian books.

    It landed in hot water when a history of the Battle of Stalingrad authored by British historian and bestselling author Antony Beevor was discovered to be among them.

    And note that when Yuliya Komska, the Ukrainian-born author of books about the Cold War and an associate professor of German at Dartmouth University, laments how much more support for diversity there used to be and recalls how Lviv switched to Russian for a day in protest when similar measures looked likely to pass in 2014, it’s important to keep in mind that she’s actually referring to one of the very first things the post-Maidan government did and which strong encourage separatist sentiments at the time:


    Lamenting the decision of the Lviv regional council and perhaps fearing a turning point in Ukraine, Yuliya Komska, the Ukrainian-born author of books about the Cold War and an associate professor of German at Dartmouth University, recalled a time when there was support for language diversity from west to east. It showed itself when a Yanukovych-era law allowing minorities to introduce their languages in regions where they represented more than 10 percent of the population looked set to be repealed in February 2014, she explained in a tweet.

    “My hometown, Lviv, switched to Russian for a day, in protest. Donetsk, then unoccupied, to Ukrainian,” she wrote. “Things couldn’t be more different now.”

    So it’s worth taking a quick look back on how that late-February 2014 move by the post-Maidan government to rescind a 2012 law that would have allowed Russian to be treated by an official language (and any other language spoken by 10 percent of the population of a region) not only fueled the separatists in the breakaway regions like Donetsk, but also made the population of Crimea strongly against the new government. When people wonder why such a high percentage of Crimea’s population actually supported the referendum to join Russia, it was stuff like the move to re-ban Russian, pushed by Svoboda and its far right allies, right after the collapse of the Yanukovych government that appeared to confirm their worst fears:

    Christian Science Monitor

    Is it too late for Kiev to woo Russian-speaking Ukraine?

    A series of missteps may mean the new government in Kiev has lost what influence it had in Ukraine’s Russia-friendly southern regions.

    By Sabra Ayres Correspondent
    Sevastopol, Ukraine
    February 28, 2014

    With Russian military forces now in Crimea and the regional government claiming loyalty to impeached President Viktor Yanukovych, it looks as if the new government in Kiev may have already lost any influence it had in Ukraine’s southern regions.

    But if Kiev loses the mostly Russian-speaking populations in the east as well as the south, many say much of the fault will be at the hands of the leaders of the antigovernment protests in Kiev and the political opposition leaders, who have done very little to woo voters in these regions. As a result, the country is now more deeply divided than it ever has been its 23 years of independence.

    “They don’t take our opinion into account on the Maidan,” says Andrey Foman, referring to Kiev’s Independence Square. The actor, from Simferopol, stood with demonstrators outside the Crimean parliament this week and showed support for greater integration with Russia. “This is a clash of two cultures now in Ukraine.”

    Mr. Foman’s complaint of not being consulted about the government reshuffle is a common theme among Russian-speaking Ukrainians. In many ways, they are right.

    The antigovernment demonstrations that started in late November were sparked by Mr. Yanukovych’s backtracking on a campaign promise he had made to sign a trade and association agreement with the European Union. The demonstrations spiraled into an antigovernment, anticorruption movement that called for Yanukovych’s removal. Ukrainians across the country agree that corruption within the ruling elite has plagued the country for too long and hindered its development.

    But the protests on the Maidan evolved into a movement in which nationalist groups developed a key role. This worried the Russian-leaning east and south, which are densely populated, heavily industrialized areas, where a large percent of the population is employed by state-subsidized, Soviet-era industries. They value political and economic stability above all else, and fear that integration into the European Union will erode the basic standards of living they have now. They are nostalgic about the Soviet Union and believe many of the western Ukrainian nationalist groups collaborated with Nazi Germany during World War II.

    Opportunity missed?

    Most Maidan supporters say that they are not anti-Russian; in fact, it’s not uncommon to hear even the more radical nationalist groups, such as the Right Sector, speaking Russian to each other. The Right Sector leader, Dmitry Yarosh, is from the eastern city of Dniprodzerzhynsk. The issue of which language to speak has not been a focal point in the three-month long demonstrations.

    But Russian media channels – which dominate the airwaves in the east and south of Ukraine – have broadcast daily images of Mr. Yarosh and other ski-masked, body-armor-clad protesters on the Maidan, talking about building a new Ukraine and discarding the old, Soviet ways and influence of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    These pictures overshadowed what most protesters on the Maidan said was the main goal of their movement: Oust Yanukovych and reboot the entire corrupt system in order to take Ukraine toward a more prosperous future, where the rule of law and human rights would be respected.

    Some say the opposition leaders representing the Maidan movement could have done more to rally support for such an anticorruption, pro-democracy movement. But a lack of action in the Russian-speaking regions on the leaders’ part meant the television images won out.

    “Nobody ever tried to communicate with the people of eastern Ukraine or Crimea,” says Sergey Chepik, director of the Agency of Social-Political Modeling, a think tank in the eastern city of Donetsk.

    Linguistic misstep

    Perhaps the most obvious of the new Kiev government’s mistakes came last week, when deputies in the nationalist party Svoboda, or Freedom, pushed through the cancellation of a law that gave equal status to minority languages, such as Russian.

    The previous law had allowed regions across the country to use languages other than the official national language, Ukrainian, on commercial signs, in schools and government documents. When it passed in 2012, it was seen as a victory for the areas where Russian was the dominant language, particularly in the east and south. The law also applied to areas in Ukraine in which other languages, such as Romanian, Hungarian, and Tatar, are spoken by smaller ethnic groups.

    The cancellation of this language law only served to infuriate Russian-speaking regions, who saw the move as more evidence that the antigovernment protests in Kiev that managed to topple Mr. Yanukovych’s government were intent on pressing for a nationalistic agenda. It only deepened tensions in the Crimea, for example, where the idea that the protesters on Maidan were radical fascists.

    “This was a very bad decision that they made in Kiev,” says Viktor Neganov, a regional adviser in Sevastopol for the newly appointed interior minister, Arsen Avakov. “It provoked the people here and was not necessary.”

    In practice, the canceling of the minority-language protection law will not affect life in Sevastopol, or the rest of the predominantly Russian-speaking areas of Ukraine, Neganov says. “But symbolically, it is a big deal. It shows that they in Kiev are not taking into account what people down here think are important.”

    The Crimean situation

    As a result, any potential for trust in the new government has been lost in places like Sevastopol, where this week the population declared overwhelmingly that they were pro-Russia. They would not, they said, be ruled by Kiev, where nationalists are trying to eradicate their Russian culture, language and values.

    But in Crimea, there likely was little Maidan leaders could have done to win them over. This is particularly true in Sevastopol, where the Russian Black Sea Fleet is based and residents see their city as Russian. When Russian armored personnel carriers were seen on the highways around this city, many greeted them as old friends returning back home.

    “They should have come in a lot earlier. If Yanukovych had been a real leader, he would have crushed those fascists in Kiev way before it got to this stage,” says Roman, a taxi driver in Sevastopol as he passed several of the Russian armored personnel carriers on the highway about 10 miles outside of the city.

    As the Russian military presence increased in Crimea Friday and the Ukrainian interior ministry declared it an “armed invasion,” the difficulty Kiev faces in convincing Sevastopol’s population of 350,000 to recognize the authority of the new central government intensified.

    “The present Ukrainian government was formed at the square. It was done before the legitimate Rada confirmed their candidacies,” Mr. Chepik says. “If tomorrow there will be another Maidan, and they will form another government? Keep in mind that there are 45 million Ukrainians” – and they are likely to want a say in the process, he added.

    ———-

    “Is it too late for Kiev to woo Russian-speaking Ukraine?” by Sabra Ayres; Christian Science Monitor; 02/28/2014

    But if Kiev loses the mostly Russian-speaking populations in the east as well as the south, many say much of the fault will be at the hands of the leaders of the antigovernment protests in Kiev and the political opposition leaders, who have done very little to woo voters in these regions. As a result, the country is now more deeply divided than it ever has been its 23 years of independence.”

    As was obvious to anyone watching the situation unfolding at that time, the acceptance of the far right right into the post-Maidan government more or less made the separatist movement inevitable. Because it’s hard to imagine a more divisive act than have a government that was largely supported by Ukraine’s large Russian-speaking populace and replacing it with a government comprised of people who define all things Russian as a national threat. But that’s what happened, which is why so much of what has unfolded in Ukraine was tragically predictable:

    “They don’t take our opinion into account on the Maidan,” says Andrey Foman, referring to Kiev’s Independence Square. The actor, from Simferopol, stood with demonstrators outside the Crimean parliament this week and showed support for greater integration with Russia. “This is a clash of two cultures now in Ukraine.”

    Mr. Foman’s complaint of not being consulted about the government reshuffle is a common theme among Russian-speaking Ukrainians. In many ways, they are right.

    The antigovernment demonstrations that started in late November were sparked by Mr. Yanukovych’s backtracking on a campaign promise he had made to sign a trade and association agreement with the European Union. The demonstrations spiraled into an antigovernment, anticorruption movement that called for Yanukovych’s removal. Ukrainians across the country agree that corruption within the ruling elite has plagued the country for too long and hindered its development.

    But the protests on the Maidan evolved into a movement in which nationalist groups developed a key role. This worried the Russian-leaning east and south, which are densely populated, heavily industrialized areas, where a large percent of the population is employed by state-subsidized, Soviet-era industries. They value political and economic stability above all else, and fear that integration into the European Union will erode the basic standards of living they have now. They are nostalgic about the Soviet Union and believe many of the western Ukrainian nationalist groups collaborated with Nazi Germany during World War II.

    Also note how the fact that Dmitry Yarosh, leader of the neo-Nazi Right Sector group, hails from the eastern city of Dniprodzerzhynsk and speaks Russian was hilariously cited as an example of how most of the Maidan supporters weren’t anti-Russian. It was quite possibly the worst example of a non-anti-Russian Maidan support the article could have picked:


    Opportunity missed?

    Most Maidan supporters say that they are not anti-Russian; in fact, it’s not uncommon to hear even the more radical nationalist groups, such as the Right Sector, speaking Russian to each other. The Right Sector leader, Dmitry Yarosh, is from the eastern city of Dniprodzerzhynsk. The issue of which language to speak has not been a focal point in the three-month long demonstrations.

    But Russian media channels – which dominate the airwaves in the east and south of Ukraine – have broadcast daily images of Mr. Yarosh and other ski-masked, body-armor-clad protesters on the Maidan, talking about building a new Ukraine and discarding the old, Soviet ways and influence of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    These pictures overshadowed what most protesters on the Maidan said was the main goal of their movement: Oust Yanukovych and reboot the entire corrupt system in order to take Ukraine toward a more prosperous future, where the rule of law and human rights would be respected.

    Some say the opposition leaders representing the Maidan movement could have done more to rally support for such an anticorruption, pro-democracy movement. But a lack of action in the Russian-speaking regions on the leaders’ part meant the television images won out.

    “Nobody ever tried to communicate with the people of eastern Ukraine or Crimea,” says Sergey Chepik, director of the Agency of Social-Political Modeling, a think tank in the eastern city of Donetsk.

    But as the article accurately noted, it was the cancellation of a 2012 law that gave equal treatment to minority languages like Russian that infuriated the Russian-speaking regions. It was a response that was completely obvious at at the time, especially in places like Crimea:


    Linguistic misstep

    Perhaps the most obvious of the new Kiev government’s mistakes came last week, when deputies in the nationalist party Svoboda, or Freedom, pushed through the cancellation of a law that gave equal status to minority languages, such as Russian.

    The previous law had allowed regions across the country to use languages other than the official national language, Ukrainian, on commercial signs, in schools and government documents. When it passed in 2012, it was seen as a victory for the areas where Russian was the dominant language, particularly in the east and south. The law also applied to areas in Ukraine in which other languages, such as Romanian, Hungarian, and Tatar, are spoken by smaller ethnic groups.

    The cancellation of this language law only served to infuriate Russian-speaking regions, who saw the move as more evidence that the antigovernment protests in Kiev that managed to topple Mr. Yanukovych’s government were intent on pressing for a nationalistic agenda. It only deepened tensions in the Crimea, for example, where the idea that the protesters on Maidan were radical fascists.

    “This was a very bad decision that they made in Kiev,” says Viktor Neganov, a regional adviser in Sevastopol for the newly appointed interior minister, Arsen Avakov. “It provoked the people here and was not necessary.”

    In practice, the canceling of the minority-language protection law will not affect life in Sevastopol, or the rest of the predominantly Russian-speaking areas of Ukraine, Neganov says. “But symbolically, it is a big deal. It shows that they in Kiev are not taking into account what people down here think are important.”

    So it should have come as no surprise when the populace of Crimea, which was largely ethnic-Russian, overwhelmingly voted to join Russia. The new government was literally passing laws that appeared to be aimed at them:


    The Crimean situation

    As a result, any potential for trust in the new government has been lost in places like Sevastopol, where this week the population declared overwhelmingly that they were pro-Russia. They would not, they said, be ruled by Kiev, where nationalists are trying to eradicate their Russian culture, language and values.

    But in Crimea, there likely was little Maidan leaders could have done to win them over. This is particularly true in Sevastopol, where the Russian Black Sea Fleet is based and residents see their city as Russian. When Russian armored personnel carriers were seen on the highways around this city, many greeted them as old friends returning back home.

    “They should have come in a lot earlier. If Yanukovych had been a real leader, he would have crushed those fascists in Kiev way before it got to this stage,” says Roman, a taxi driver in Sevastopol as he passed several of the Russian armored personnel carriers on the highway about 10 miles outside of the city.

    As the Russian military presence increased in Crimea Friday and the Ukrainian interior ministry declared it an “armed invasion,” the difficulty Kiev faces in convincing Sevastopol’s population of 350,000 to recognize the authority of the new central government intensified.

    “The present Ukrainian government was formed at the square. It was done before the legitimate Rada confirmed their candidacies,” Mr. Chepik says. “If tomorrow there will be another Maidan, and they will form another government? Keep in mind that there are 45 million Ukrainians” – and they are likely to want a say in the process, he added.

    Note that the 2014 canceling of that 2012 law was quickly rescinded, but the damage was done. And the damage continues to be done with moves like what the Lviv regional council just did.

    Also note that broad support for joining Russia remains the case today among Crimea’s populace. Now why might that be?

    And in other Lviv news…

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 21, 2018, 3:00 pm
  6. It looks like the mainstreaming of vigilante neo-Nazi groups in Ukraine now includes glowing national TV new coverage: A group of C14 members, along with the ‘Kyiv Municipal Watch’ organization which is led by C14 activist Serhiy Bondar, carried out another raid on a group of Roma. This time they were driven out of the area around the Southern Railyway Station in Kyiv. Bondar posted a video of raid on his Facebook page on October 24, which he entitled “A purge of gypsies at the capital’s railway station”. Bondar then backtracked and claimed that C14 were merely taking videos of “gypsies who rob people” and that the police were the ones who actually conducted the raid. That same day, the TSN.ua news broadcast reported on the raid, where the news presenter virtually parrots part of Bondar’s video and never mentions the ethnicity of the targets. The feature is simply entitle: ‘Police and civic activists tried to clean the capital’s station of thieves’:

    Kharkiv Human Rights Group

    Neo-Nazi C14 vigilantes appear to work with Kyiv police in latest ‘purge’ of Roma

    25.10.2018 | Halya Coynash

    Members of the neo-Nazi C14 movement, together with the ‘Kyiv Municipal Watch’ civic organization which is led by C14 activist Serhiy Bondar, have carried out another raid, driving Roma citizens out of the area around the Southern Railway Station in Kyiv. The raid does not appear to have been accompanied by shocking images of violence like some five others this year, but that is the only positive difference. What is much more disturbing is that the action appears to have been with the cooperation of the police, and was essentially given glowing coverage on a national television news broadcast.

    Bondar posted a video on his Facebook page on 24 October, together with a caption reading (in his words): “A purge of gypsies at the capital’s railway station”. He later began backtracking, claiming that they had not driven anybody away that they had simply posted videos “with gypsies who rob people” – as their “ethnic trade” – and that the police, to their amazement, had done it themselves.

    It is worth noting that the above language, and worse, are used extensively by Bondar and other C14 activists. This is just one of the reasons for concern at indications that these far-right vigilantes appear to be working closely with the police. That is certainly the impression given by the TSN.ua news broadcast on 24 October, which Bondar proudly posted on his FB page. It is small wonder that he was pleased since the presenter of the feature virtually parrots parts of the C14 video, with only two Roma people driven out shown in a negative light. There is one telling detail, namely that the television program is carefully not to ethnically label the people driven out, with the feature entitled: ‘Police and civic activists tried to clean the capital’s station of thieves’. It does, however, show the activists wearing camouflage gear and chevrons clearly showing the C14 symbol, and little effort would be required to find out how C14 presents its vigilante activities, and why this organization has gained notoriety over recent months.

    There may well be a problem with thieves at Kyiv stations, and there is little sense in closing ones eyes to the fact that some of the Roma who come to Kyiv and live temporarily near the stations are involved in criminal activities. Thieves should undoubtedly be stopped, but that is the task of the police, not of C14 vigilantes with racist views, a a shocking track record and openly declared willingness to cause trouble to people’s ‘enemies’ for money.

    There have been a minimum of five attacks on Roma camps since April this year; with the last leaving one young man dead and a woman and child injured. All of the attacks – at Lysa Hora in Kyiv on 21-22 April; Rudne on 9 May; the Ternopil Oblast on 22 May; at Holosiyiv Park in Kyiv on 7 June and near Lviv on 24 June – seem to have been carried out by activists involved in far-right groups. One C14 activist, Serhiy Mazur, was recently placed under house arrest over charges relating to the attack on a Roma settlement on Lysa Hora in Kyiv.

    As reported, there was effectively a pogrom on April 21-22, with families driven out and their makeshift homes burned. All of this was described in detail, albeit with euphemisms, by Mazur on his Facebook page.

    The Kyiv police continued to downplay this raid by vigilantes with neo-Nazi leanings right up until 25 April when the Internet publication LB.ua posted a video showing whole families running in terror from young men, many in masks, hurling stones and spraying gas canisters in the direction where families with some very small children were trying to take shelter. One Roma man can be seen on the video trying to use a thin branch in defence, but then realizing he is outnumbered and also fleeing. That evening the Kyiv police finally announced that a criminal investigation had been initiated. Human rights activists are reportedly working to ensure that the police keep their promise and change the classification of the crime from ‘hooliganism’ to that of a hate crime under Article 161 of the Criminal Code.

    It was noticeable, and worrying, that in his report on 19 April, Mazur asserted that the C14 activists had first appeared, with an ultimatum to get out by the following day, together with representatives of the Holosiyiv administration.

    ———

    “Neo-Nazi C14 vigilantes appear to work with Kyiv police in latest ‘purge’ of Roma”; Halya Coynash; Kharkiv Human Rights Group; 10/25/2018

    “Members of the neo-Nazi C14 movement, together with the ‘Kyiv Municipal Watch’ civic organization which is led by C14 activist Serhiy Bondar, have carried out another raid, driving Roma citizens out of the area around the Southern Railway Station in Kyiv. The raid does not appear to have been accompanied by shocking images of violence like some five others this year, but that is the only positive difference. What is much more disturbing is that the action appears to have been with the cooperation of the police, and was essentially given glowing coverage on a national television news broadcast.

    This is how bad the neo-Nazi situation is in Ukraine: the most disturbing aspect of these neo-Nazi vigilante attacks is the growing public embrace of them. An embrace that, in this instance, included the Kyiv police and the TSN.ua news broadcast:


    Bondar posted a video on his Facebook page on 24 October, together with a caption reading (in his words): “A purge of gypsies at the capital’s railway station”. He later began backtracking, claiming that they had not driven anybody away that they had simply posted videos “with gypsies who rob people” – as their “ethnic trade” – and that the police, to their amazement, had done it themselves.

    It is worth noting that the above language, and worse, are used extensively by Bondar and other C14 activists. This is just one of the reasons for concern at indications that these far-right vigilantes appear to be working closely with the police. That is certainly the impression given by the TSN.ua news broadcast on 24 October, which Bondar proudly posted on his FB page. It is small wonder that he was pleased since the presenter of the feature virtually parrots parts of the C14 video, with only two Roma people driven out shown in a negative light. There is one telling detail, namely that the television program is carefully not to ethnically label the people driven out, with the feature entitled: ‘Police and civic activists tried to clean the capital’s station of thieves’. It does, however, show the activists wearing camouflage gear and chevrons clearly showing the C14 symbol, and little effort would be required to find out how C14 presents its vigilante activities, and why this organization has gained notoriety over recent months.

    So it will be interesting to learn if the police did actually carry out the raids on the Roma and C14 members merely filmed the Roma, basically acting as spotters for the police as Bondar later claimed and the news broadcast parroted, or if that was just a public relations move the media was happy to play along with. Either way it would be pretty damn disturbing.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | October 26, 2018, 2:46 pm

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