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Criticizing OUN/UPA Now Illegal in Ukraine

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14th Waf­fen SS “Gali­cian Divi­sion” troops inspect­ed by Himm­ler: The divi­sion was recruit­ed from the ranks of OUN/B UPA

COMMENT: A new law passed by the Rada (the Ukrain­ian par­lia­ment) bestows enti­tle­ments on sur­viv­ing mem­bers of the OUN and its mil­i­tary wing, the UPA.

Fur­ther­more, the law makes it ille­gal to crit­i­cize those Third Reich allies in their activ­i­ties on behalf of Nazi Germany–it is those activ­i­ties that con­sti­tut­ed Ukraine’s dri­ve for “inde­pen­dence.”

“Rada Rec­og­nizes OUN and UPA Mem­bers as Fight­ers for Inde­pen­dence of Ukraine”; Zik.ua; 4/9/2015.

“The state acknowl­edges that the fight­ers for Ukraine’s inde­pen­dence played an impor­tant role in rein­stat­ing the country’s state­hood declared on Aug. 24, 1991,” the law runs.

In com­pli­ance with the law, the gov­ern­ment will pro­vide social guar­an­tees and bestow hon­ors on OUN-UPA fight­ers.

“Pub­lic denun­ci­a­tion of the role of OUN-UPA in restor­ing the inde­pen­dence of Ukraine is ille­gal,” the law says.

Pro­grams cov­er­ing the Ukraine cri­sis are: FTR #‘s 777778779780781782, 783784794800803804, 808811817818824826829832833837.

Discussion

4 comments for “Criticizing OUN/UPA Now Illegal in Ukraine”

  1. Oh look: Kiev is about to pass a law “on the con­dem­na­tion of the com­mu­nist and nation­al­ist-social­ist (Nazi) total­i­tar­i­an regimes in Ukraine and ban on the pro­pa­gan­da of their sym­bols” and yet a “sec­tion of arti­cle 436 of the crim­i­nal cade, which for­bids “deny­ing or jus­ti­fy­ing” the crimes of fas­cism, the Waf­fen-SS or those who “coop­er­at­ed with the fas­cist occu­pants,” has been removed, leav­ing only a ban on using “sym­bols of the Nazi total­i­tar­i­an regime”. Imag­ine that:

    The Nation
    Will Ukraine’s New Anti-Com­mu­nist Law Ush­er in a Free Speech Dark Age?

    The law, still to be signed by the pres­i­dent, is more about silenc­ing the left than any­thing else.

    Alec Luhn
    April 13, 2015

    Includ­ing “com­mu­nist” in the name of a polit­i­cal par­ty, sell­ing a Sovi­et-flag sou­venir or even singing the Sovi­et hymn would be pun­ish­able by up to 10 years in prison, accord­ing to a new law passed by Ukraine’s par­lia­ment.

    The law “on the con­dem­na­tion of the com­mu­nist and nation­al­ist-social­ist (Nazi) total­i­tar­i­an regimes in Ukraine and ban on the pro­pa­gan­da of their sym­bols” is osten­si­bly sup­posed to pre­vent the recur­rence of Sovi­et-style repres­sions, but crit­ics say it would lim­it free speech and mar­gin­al­ize the already embat­tled left. Although pres­i­dent Petro Poroshenko has yet to sign the law against com­mu­nist pro­pa­gan­da, the bill received 254 votes and was spon­sored by mem­bers of his own par­ty, among oth­ers.

    “Even if the state won’t be inter­est­ed in per­se­cut­ing Ukraine’s mar­gin­al, weak left­ist orga­ni­za­tions, the far right will like­ly use this law … to harass politi­cians and also schol­ars on the basis that they are not crit­i­cal enough of the Sovi­et Union or are over-crit­i­cal of Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists,” Volodymyr Ishchenko, deputy direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Social and Labor Research and a mem­ber of the edi­to­r­i­al board of the pro­gres­sive jour­nal Com­mons, told The Nation.

    Mean­while, anoth­er law passed last Thurs­day rec­og­nizes as inde­pen­dence fight­ers a con­tro­ver­sial nation­al­ist group accused of eth­nic cleans­ing and col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Nazis.

    The new laws would like­ly tap into wide­spread anger with Rus­sia, which has backed a sep­a­ratist cam­paign in east­ern Ukraine. But they would also fur­ther pro­voke ten­sions with­in Ukrain­ian soci­ety, which has been frac­tured by a pro-Russ­ian sep­a­ratist cam­paign that enjoys pop­u­lar sup­port in east­ern Ukraine. A peace plan spon­sored by France, Ger­many, Ukraine and Rus­sia fore­sees con­sti­tu­tion­al reforms giv­ing the rebel-con­trolled areas of east­ern Ukraine greater auton­o­my.

    The anti-total­i­tar­i­an law is less wide-reach­ing than a bill intro­duced last year that pro­posed ban­ning “com­mu­nist ide­ol­o­gy,” and it’s hard to dis­agree with its con­dem­na­tion of the repres­sions con­duct­ed under the Sovi­et regime. But it also would give the author­i­ties the pow­er to shut down any orga­ni­za­tion that makes even oblique ref­er­ence to the com­mu­nist tra­di­tion.

    Pub­lic use of the sym­bols of the USSR or oth­er east­ern bloc coun­tries, includ­ing the Sovi­et hymn and the ham­mer and sick­le, would be pun­ish­able by up to five years in prison for an indi­vid­ual, or up to ten years for an orga­ni­za­tion. (The ban would appar­ent­ly even include “The Inter­na­tionale,” which the Sovi­et Union used as its nation­al anthem until 1944.) If a polit­i­cal par­ty, mass media out­let or oth­er group of cit­i­zens engages in “pro­pa­gan­da” of the com­mu­nist or Nazi regimes or uses their sym­bols, it could be denied reg­is­tra­tion or ordered to cease its activ­i­ties.

    The law would also appar­ent­ly legal­ize Ukraine’s “Lenin­fall,” the tear­ing down of Lenin mon­u­ments in cities around the coun­try. Among the banned items are mon­u­ments, pic­tures or quo­ta­tions fea­tur­ing any­one who had the rank of dis­trict com­mit­tee sec­re­tary or high­er in the com­mu­nist par­ty, as well as mon­u­ments or pic­tures of actions com­mit­ted by the com­mu­nist par­ty. In east­ern cities like Kharkiv, where nation­al­ists tore down the cen­tral Lenin stat­ue in Sep­tem­ber, pro-Russ­ian locals have pre­vi­ous­ly defend­ed such mon­u­ments.

    It would also entail the renam­ing of a huge num­ber of cities and streets, since it bans the use of names tak­en from com­mu­nist lead­ers and “con­nect­ed with the activ­i­ties of the com­mu­nist par­ty.” This huge and fraught bureau­crat­ic chal­lenge would be one more task on top of the many reforms demand­ed of Kiev under its loan pro­gram from the Inter­na­tion­al Mon­e­tary Fund. More impor­tant­ly, it would only con­tribute to the split in Ukrain­ian soci­ety, which has seen thou­sands in the large­ly Russ­ian speak­ing east take up arms against per­ceived per­se­cu­tion by a more nation­al­ist gov­ern­ment.

    “The leg­is­la­tion bans cita­tions of Lenin, which means that we’ll need to destroy half of our aca­d­e­m­ic works, it bans all com­mu­nist sym­bols, which means a war vet­er­an will for­bid­den from wear­ing the Red Star medal he shed his blood for,” said Pyotr Simo­nenko, the leader of Ukraine’s com­mu­nist par­ty, which will have to change its name. “All this is a path to an even big­ger schism in Ukrain­ian soci­ety and a con­tin­u­a­tion of war.”

    Even though the Ukrain­ian group Left Oppo­si­tion has crit­i­cized the com­mu­nist par­ty for its defense of Vladimir Putin’s “con­ser­v­a­tive and impe­ri­al­is­tic poli­cies,” it also con­demned the law, not­ing that it had been found to be over­ly harsh by the Ukrain­ian par­lia­men­t’s own research depart­ment. In an analy­sis, the group argued that since the law for­bids not only pro­pa­gan­da but also “infor­ma­tion jus­ti­fy­ing the crim­i­nal char­ac­ter of the com­mu­nist regime,” almost any­one can be accused.

    “This doc­u­ment will strike a blow to aca­d­e­m­ic dis­cus­sions, cre­ate an instru­ment for repres­sion, and hin­der the strug­gle against oli­garchy and the cre­ation of a real left alter­na­tive,” it wrote.

    Bill spon­sor Yury Lut­senko, a for­mer inter­nal affairs min­is­ter who was impris­oned under for­mer pres­i­dent Vik­tor Yanukovych, argued that the leg­is­la­tion “does­n’t ban ide­ol­o­gy, because that’s not accept­able in any demo­c­ra­t­ic coun­try.”

    “This leg­is­la­tion bans a total­i­tar­i­an regime under what­ev­er col­ors it uses, fas­cist, com­mu­nist, any oth­ers,” he told jour­nal­ists.

    But the law is not so much anti-total­i­tar­i­an as it is anti-Russ­ian, and its con­tent dwells more on com­mu­nism than Nazism. Its spon­sors point­ed­ly pushed it through before the cel­e­bra­tion on May 9 of the defeat of Nazi Ger­many. The St. George rib­bon com­mem­o­rat­ing the Sovi­et vic­to­ry has become a de-fac­to sym­bol for the pro-Russ­ian cam­paign in east­ern Ukraine, which the Krem­lin and the rebels have described as a sim­i­lar strug­gle against fas­cism.

    ...

    Oth­er east­ern bloc coun­tries that left Rus­si­a’s orbit after the breakup of the Sovi­et Union, in par­tic­u­lar Poland and the Baltics, passed sim­i­lar anti-com­mu­nist laws. But Ishchenko, who is work­ing on an analy­sis of these laws, said the Ukrain­ian leg­is­la­tion is “far more repres­sive than laws in oth­er Euro­pean coun­tries.” In par­tic­u­lar, he said it lim­its aca­d­e­m­ic research by stip­u­lat­ing that you can cite sym­bols or pro­pa­gan­da of a com­mu­nist regime only if you’re not legit­imiz­ing it.

    The leg­is­la­tion could also encour­age far-right groups in their con­flicts with left­ist activists. Dur­ing the Euro­maid­an protests in Kiev in the win­ter of 2013–14, nation­al­ist groups intim­i­dat­ed and even attacked left-wing activists.

    ...

    Per­verse­ly, the anti-total­i­tar­i­an law report­ed­ly soft­ens reg­u­la­tions on pro-Nazi speech in one case: A sec­tion of arti­cle 436 of the crim­i­nal cade, which for­bids “deny­ing or jus­ti­fy­ing” the crimes of fas­cism, the Waf­fen-SS or those who “coop­er­at­ed with the fas­cist occu­pants,” has been removed, leav­ing only a ban on using “sym­bols of the Nazi total­i­tar­i­an regime.”

    While it’s not clear why this arti­cle was changed, it could be seen to ben­e­fit some nation­al­ist orga­ni­za­tions. Notably, the pro-Kiev Azov vol­un­teer bat­tal­ion fight­ing in east­ern Ukraine, many of whose mem­bers have expressed neo-Nazi views, uses the wolf­san­gel sym­bol that was also employed by a Waf­fen-SS tank divi­sion. And one of the trou­bling lega­cies of today’s Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists is that mem­bers of the Ukrain­ian Insur­gent Army, their ide­o­log­i­cal pre­de­ces­sor, have been accused of col­lab­o­rat­ing with the Nazis.

    Anoth­er law passed last Thurs­day declared fight­ers of the Ukrain­ian Insur­gent Army and oth­ers to be “mem­bers of the strug­gle for Ukraine’s inde­pen­dence.” While the law would main­ly enti­tle nation­al­ist fight­ers to more gov­ern­ment ben­e­fits, it also helps more firm­ly estab­lish their rep­u­ta­tion as heroes of the state, despite the fact that nation­al­ists also report­ed­ly orches­trat­ed eth­nic cleans­ing that killed thou­sands of Poles and Jews dur­ing the war years.

    David Marples, a his­to­ry pro­fes­sor spe­cial­iz­ing in Rus­sia, Belarus and Ukraine at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Alber­ta, called the law a “crude dis­tor­tion of the past” that lumps con­tro­ver­sial nation­al­ist orga­ni­za­tions like the UPA togeth­er with less ruth­less ones, lend­ing cre­dence to Krem­lin claims that the Kiev gov­ern­ment is run by nation­al­ists.

    “Pre­sum­ably now his­to­ri­ans can be arrest­ed for deny­ing the hero­ism of [nation­al­ist] Stepan Ban­dera or the father of the intro­duc­er of the bill, [UPA leader] Roman Shukheyvch,” Marples wrote in a blog post. “Russ­ian trolls oper­at­ing on social net­works, very promi­nent­ly fea­tured in West­ern media over the past week, have now acquired new and authen­tic ammu­ni­tion for their ver­bal arse­nals.”

    Karasy­ov said “some time needs to pass” before Ukraine will be ready for a “bal­anced view” of its 20th cen­tu­ry nation­al­ist move­ment. “Now the author­i­ties are rush­ing laws through, they often don’t take into account the opin­ions of south­east and oppo­si­tion block,” he said, refer­ring to the coun­try’s more pro-Russ­ian areas.

    If the nation­al­ists now in par­lia­ment have their way, the anti-total­i­tar­i­an leg­is­la­tion may be only the start. Deputy Oleh Tyah­ny­bok, the leader of the nation­al­ist Svo­bo­da Par­ty, called on the gov­ern­ment to go fur­ther and pass a “ban on com­mu­nist ide­ol­o­gy,” can­cel pen­sions for for­mer Sovi­et offi­cials and com­plete­ly ban the Com­mu­nist par­ty’s activ­i­ties.

    “Pre­sum­ably now his­to­ri­ans can be arrest­ed for deny­ing the hero­ism of [nation­al­ist] Stepan Ban­dera or the father of the intro­duc­er of the bill, [UPA leader] Roman Shukheyvch”

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | April 13, 2015, 1:17 pm
  2. Here’s an arti­cle about how Ukraine’s new “anti-com­mu­nism” laws are basi­cal­ly being used by the Kiev gov­ern­ment as the polit­i­cal equiv­a­lent of a shiny objects designed to con­demn and dis­tort­ing the hor­rors of the past in order to dis­tract the rab­ble from the hor­rors of the present:

    Politi­co
    Ukrain­ian PM leads charge to erase Sovi­et his­to­ry

    Cham­pi­oning anti-com­mu­nist leg­is­la­tion has allowed Arseniy Yat­senyuk to evade accu­sa­tions of cor­rup­tion.

    By Max­im Eris­tavi

    27/4/15, 4:06 PM CET

    Updat­ed 27/4/15, 5:50 PM CET

    KIEV — Two weeks after a high-pro­file dou­ble-assas­si­na­tion in Kiev on April 16, con­spir­a­cy the­o­ries about the cause of the killings are still swirling around the city.

    “[The] parade of polit­i­cal mur­ders obvi­ous­ly is not coin­ci­den­tal,” Vic­to­ria Sumar, a top offi­cial in Prime Min­is­ter Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s par­ty, the People’s Front, wrote in a pub­lic Face­book post: “It is a spe­cial oper­a­tion which will be used for polit­i­cal and infor­ma­tion­al bat­tle, for desta­bi­liza­tion.”

    Even well-known young reformists like Svit­lana Zalis­chuk, a new MP in Pres­i­dent Petro Poroshenko’s bloc, are sure of Krem­lin involve­ment. “In my opin­ion, this desta­bi­liza­tion has for­eign roots and is very use­ful for our ene­my,” she told me, adding that after the recent cease­fire, foment­ing polit­i­cal chaos inside Ukraine is Russia’s log­i­cal next step.

    Ukrain­ian media has cap­i­tal­ized on the uncer­tain­ty and para­noia sur­round­ing the mur­ders. “Krem­lin Provo­ca­tion” flashed across TV screens just hours after the mur­ders.

    The search for Ukraine’s “inter­nal ene­mies” and “provo­ca­teurs” runs wild not only through social net­works and media, but inside leg­isla­tive cham­bers, too. “Sovi­et” has become a dirty word in Ukrain­ian pol­i­tics, a new syn­onym for “trai­tor” or “spy.”

    On April 9, the Ukrain­ian par­lia­ment passed a set of three bills, which would ban Com­mu­nist and Nazi sym­bols as well as any­thing that can cred­i­bly be deemed “pro­pa­gan­da of true nature.” Sim­i­lar laws were draft­ed in 2002, 2005, 2009, 2011 and 2013, but they all failed to mate­ri­al­ize under gov­ern­ments with close ties to Moscow. Designed as a means of leg­isla­tive clo­sure with the past, the most recent attempts were inspired by sim­i­lar mea­sures passed in oth­er post-Sovi­et coun­tries dur­ing the so-called “de-com­mu­niza­tion” peri­od of the 1990s. But unlike in Poland, Geor­gia, or the Baltics, the Ukrain­ian copy­cat laws are much more rad­i­cal. Thrown togeth­er hap­haz­ard­ly, it passed quick­ly, with­out any pub­lic debate.

    At first, the draft law was envi­sioned as a pow­er­ful man­i­festo in times of dev­as­tat­ing war. Both at home and abroad, the con­flict in Ukraine is per­ceived as a bat­tle between two run­away forces: those fight­ing for a demo­c­ra­t­ic and pros­per­ous future with Europe ver­sus the Sovi­et past, sym­bol­ized by ris­ing geopo­lit­i­cal nos­tal­gia for neigh­bor­ing Rus­sia.

    A bipar­ti­san group of thir­teen mem­bers of par­lia­ment co-authored the leg­is­la­tion, includ­ing promis­ing young politi­cians like one of the bill’s co-authors, Han­na Hop­ko. “If we had man­aged to pass [these laws] when we got our inde­pen­dence in 1991, I think that Russ­ian aggres­sion wouldn’t be pos­si­ble,” Hop­ko said. “I’d be hap­py if my 4‑year old daugh­ter could stop see­ing Lenin mon­u­ments on our streets… We need new heroes of Ukrain­ian his­to­ry.”

    The shad­ow of the Sovi­et Union is ubiq­ui­tous in Ukraine. Today’s twen­ty-some­things grew up on streets named after Sovi­et heroes and lived in homes bear­ing ham­mer and sick­le mold­ings. In many fam­i­lies, men hand down Red Army medals from gen­er­a­tion to gen­er­a­tion.

    If the new leg­is­la­tion pass­es, sim­ply dis­play­ing Sovi­et sym­bols could land you in prison for up to five years. All streets, dis­tricts, vil­lages, and cities with Sovi­et names would have to be renamed, a so-called “topo­graph­i­cal rev­o­lu­tion” cost­ing an esti­mat­ed $1.5 bil­lion (€1.38 bil­lion). Com­mu­ni­ties with Sovi­et names, already strug­gling in Ukraine’s ema­ci­at­ed econ­o­my, would have to foot the bill for the rebrand­ing; nei­ther state nor local bud­gets have the nec­es­sary fund­ing. Some also fear the laws would lead to a spike in van­dal­ism — unsanc­tioned demo­li­tions of Sovi­et mon­u­ments and sym­bols are already a part of dai­ly rou­tine in Ukraine.

    The strictest pro­vi­sions of the bill expose its hap­haz­ard nature. The vague lan­guage con­tains pro­vi­sions ban­ning the “denial of true nature of the com­mu­nist regime” that could get one’s media license sus­pend­ed or polit­i­cal par­ty banned, and the laws’ authors delib­er­ate­ly exclud­ed the Red Army’s lega­cy from the leg­is­la­tion — the issue is sim­ply too polit­i­cal­ly tox­ic. The Gen­er­al Sci­en­tif­ic-Expert Board, the parliament’s law review body found that the laws vio­late the Ukrain­ian con­sti­tu­tion on at least four counts.

    Human rights activists are also con­cerned. “We are still wait­ing for the final text of the laws to be pub­lished, but ana­lyz­ing the draft I can see a restric­tion on free­dom of expres­sion, free­dom of asso­ci­a­tion and free­dom of assem­bly in there,” Tanya Mazur explains, the head of Amnesty Inter­na­tion­al Ukraine. “We are real­ly dis­ap­point­ed with such pop­ulist steps by the Ukrain­ian par­lia­ment,” she adds, con­cerned that the laws might tar­get dis­pro­por­tion­al­ly the rad­i­cal left, because of vague lan­guage.

    Hop­ko called such con­cerns the prod­ucts of “manip­u­la­tion” and “exag­ger­a­tion.”

    But the main rea­son why the anti-com­mu­nist laws are so poor­ly com­posed is because their pri­ma­ry pur­pose is not to elim­i­nate pro­pa­gan­da, but to pro­vide a pow­er­ful boost for its spon­sors in upcom­ing local elec­tions sched­uled for Octo­ber 2015, explained Dmit­ry Lytvyn, a polit­i­cal ana­lyst based in Kiev
    . “Ukrain­ian laws like this one always seem to be falling from the sky out of nowhere,” Lytvyn said. “It is a per­fect dis­trac­tion from real prob­lems with the sink­ing econ­o­my and cor­rup­tion. Now, for the next six months of the cam­paign for local elec­tions we don’t have to debate the government’s record, but will fight about new names for our streets and cities.”

    Fac­ing cor­rup­tion alle­ga­tions and a tank­ing approval rat­ing six months before elec­tions, Prime Min­is­ter Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s par­ty, the People’s Front, is lead­ing the charge to erase the rem­nants of Ukraine’s Sovi­et lega­cy. The ini­tial anti-com­mu­nist law was draft­ed by the party’s top brass, who pro­posed to ban far-left ide­ol­o­gy alto­geth­er, out­law­ing exhi­bi­tions of com­mu­nism, Lenin­ism, and Marx­ism. When that ver­sion was deemed too rad­i­cal, a new draft was issued employ­ing soft­er rhetoric to gar­ner a wider spec­trum of bipar­ti­san sup­port. It was in this sec­ondary phase that the pro­pos­al to ban “Nazi pro­pa­gan­da” was also includ­ed, as well as an ini­tia­tive to open Sovi­et archives, one of the more effec­tive parts of the leg­is­la­tion.

    In recent months, Yatsenyuk’s par­ty has lurched to the right as cor­rup­tion alle­ga­tions have threat­ened its legit­i­ma­cy. A num­ber of far-right fig­ures have been ele­vat­ed to gov­ern­ment posts under its watch: Dmytro Yarosh, the con­tro­ver­sial leader of the far-right “Right Sec­tor” was appoint­ed an advis­er to the army’s chief of staff, and a sus­pect­ed far-right leader was recent­ly made Kiev police chief. The news has led to spec­u­la­tion that the People’s Front is using polit­i­cal appoint­ments to paci­fy poten­tial allies and stymie its plung­ing approval rat­ings.

    Sens­ing blood in the water, a hand­ful of MPs from Batkivshchy­na, the par­ty of for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Yulia Tymoshenko, along with the far-right Svo­bo­da par­ty and one leg­is­la­tor from Pres­i­dent Petro Poroshenko’s Bloc demand­ed the cre­ation of a com­mit­tee to inves­ti­gate cor­rup­tion alle­ga­tions against Yat­senyuk and his team back in March. Talk of cor­rup­tion rumors came up in diplo­mat­ic talks between Ukraine and the EU, accord­ing to sev­er­al diplo­mat­ic sources.

    Cham­pi­oning the anti-com­mu­nist laws emerged as a con­ve­nient way for Yat­senyuk to divert the news cycle, divert­ing the nation’s atten­tion away from his party’s cor­rup­tion scan­dal.

    ...

    In case you missed it:

    The ini­tial anti-com­mu­nist law was draft­ed by the party’s top brass, who pro­posed to ban far-left ide­ol­o­gy alto­geth­er, out­law­ing exhi­bi­tions of com­mu­nism, Lenin­ism, and Marx­ism. When that ver­sion was deemed too rad­i­cal, a new draft was issued employ­ing soft­er rhetoric to gar­ner a wider spec­trum of bipar­ti­san sup­port. It was in this sec­ondary phase that the pro­pos­al to ban “Nazi pro­pa­gan­da” was also includ­ed, as well as an ini­tia­tive to open Sovi­et archives, one of the more effec­tive parts of the leg­is­la­tion.

    Yep, the anti-Nazi (except for the Wolf­san­gel) pro­vi­sions to Ukraine’s new anti-ide­ol­o­gy laws were only added as after­thought to “gar­ner a wider spec­trum of bipar­ti­san sup­port”. It’s about pri­or­i­ties. Hor­ri­ble pri­or­i­ties.

    Look over there every­one! A shiny object!

    Now what was every­one all upset about again?

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | April 28, 2015, 2:56 pm
  3. The recent deci­sion of the Verk­hov­na Rada to rec­og­nize the Ukrain­ian Insur­gent Army fight­ers, well known to every­one here, in Poland, as mass killers of thou­sands of our com­pa­tri­ots in Wolyn and Gali­cia,
    http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1234328
    as the coun­try’s free­dom fight­ers
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/apr/20/ukraine-decommunisation-law-soviet
    has pro­voked great indig­na­tion, espe­cial­ly among those who suf­fered from UPA-OUN Nazis’ atroc­i­ties. And our EU lead­ers must real­ize at last that such hon­or­ing of the Nazi col­lab­o­ra­tors makes our fur­ther coop­er­a­tion with Ukraine prac­ti­cal­ly impos­si­ble now.

    Posted by Jersy | May 5, 2015, 5:17 am
  4. “As Ukraine advances on the dif­fi­cult road to full democ­ra­cy, we strong­ly urge the nation’s gov­ern­ment to refrain from any mea­sure that pre­empts or cen­sors dis­cus­sion or politi­cizes the study of his­to­ry,” the U.S. Holo­caust Memo­r­i­al Muse­um said in a state­ment:

    Haaretz
    Ukraine to hon­or groups that killed Jews in World War II
    New law out­laws the dis­play of Nazi and Com­mu­nist sym­bols but anoth­er law requires that nation­al­ist groups involved in the killings of Jews and Poles be hon­ored.

    By Haaretz | May 21, 2015 | 6:17 AM

    New Ukrain­ian laws that came into effect over the past two months will out­law the dis­play of objects and names from the coun­try’s com­mu­nist past, while hon­or­ing groups that col­lab­o­rat­ed with the Nazis in the exter­mi­na­tion of Ukrain­ian Jew­ry, Bloomberg reports.

    A law signed by Ukrain­ian Pres­i­dent Petro Poroshenko last week bans all Sovi­et and Nazi sym­bols, includ­ing town and street names.

    It is expect­ed to lead to the renam­ing such region­al cen­ters as Dnipropetro­vsk (named after Grig­o­ry Petro­vsky, who ran Ukraine in the 1920s and 1930s) and Kirovo­grad (bear­ing the name of Sergei Kirov, a Bol­she­vik leader alleged­ly killed by Stal­in,) as well as dozens of oth­er towns and hun­dreds of streets.

    Anoth­er bill, signed into law in April, pre­scribes that Ukraini­ans hon­or a num­ber of World War II nation­al­ist orga­ni­za­tions, some of which – such as the Orga­ni­za­tion of Ukrain­ian Nation­al­ists and the Ukrain­ian Insur­gent Army (UPA) – fought along­side the Nazis.

    The law was protest­ed by 40 his­to­ri­ans from major West­ern uni­ver­si­ties in an open let­ter to Poroshenko and Ukrain­ian leg­is­la­tors.

    “Not only would it be a crime to ques­tion the legit­i­ma­cy of an orga­ni­za­tion (UPA) that slaugh­tered tens of thou­sands of Poles in one of the most heinous acts of eth­nic cleans­ing in the his­to­ry of Ukraine,” the his­to­ri­ans wrote, ” but also it would exempt from crit­i­cism the OUN, one of the most extreme polit­i­cal groups in West­ern Ukraine between the wars, and one which col­lab­o­rat­ed with Nazi Ger­many at the out­set of the Sovi­et inva­sion in 1941.

    “It also took part in anti-Jew­ish pogroms in Ukraine and, in the case of the Mel­nyk fac­tion, remained allied with the occu­pa­tion regime through­out the war.”

    ...

    “As Ukraine advances on the dif­fi­cult road to full democ­ra­cy, we strong­ly urge the nation’s gov­ern­ment to refrain from any mea­sure that pre­empts or cen­sors dis­cus­sion or politi­cizes the study of his­to­ry,” the U.S. Holo­caust Memo­r­i­al Muse­um said in a state­ment.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 21, 2015, 7:05 am

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