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FTR#1311 How Many Lies Before You Belong to the Lies?, Part 26

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FTR#1311 This pro­gram was record­ed in one, 60-minute seg­ment.

Lviv, Ukaine, Sum­mer of 2018. Cel­e­bra­tion of the 75th anniver­sary of the 14th Waf­fen SS Divi­sion (Gali­cian). Note the Ukrain­ian hon­or guard in the back­ground.

Intro­duc­tion: The war in Ukraine has served to make the nor­mal­iza­tion of Nazis almost rou­tine. This broad­cast high­lights that nor­mal­iza­tion, places it in a broad­er his­tor­i­cal con­text and sets forth essen­tial back­ground infor­ma­tion that flesh­es out under­stand­ing of the phe­nom­e­non.

Points of Analy­sis and Dis­cus­sion Include: 

1a.–The pro­gram begins with review of a crit­i­cal insight made by Glenn Pinch­back, an offi­cer at Fort Sill, Okla­homa. This insight encap­su­lates an ide­o­log­i­cal dynam­ic that has, in part, result­ed in the nor­mal­iza­tion of Nazis via the Ukraine war.

1b.–Exemplifying the nor­mal­iza­tion of Nazis is the white­wash­ing of the Plast orga­ni­za­tion by the New York Times, which presents it as a nor­mal sum­mer camp.

2.–A more accu­rate por­tray­al of the Plast orga­ni­za­tion was pre­sent­ed by Scott Rit­ter: “ . . . . Plast is to Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists like the Hitler Youth was to Ger­man Nazis. . . .”

3.–The white­wash­ing of Plast can be seen as deriv­ing from the cul­ti­va­tion of Ukrain­ian and oth­er East­ern Euro­pean fas­cist groups by the Gehlen orga­ni­za­tion.

4.–For the sec­ond time this year, Azov Nazis were fet­ed as heroes at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty.

5.–Stanford fel­low and con­ser­v­a­tive lumi­nary Fran­cis Fukuya­ma was among those who cel­e­brat­ed the Azov Nazis.

6.–Azov’s Nazis evolved direct­ly from the Third Reich col­lab­o­ra­tionist gov­ern­ment of Ukraine. Roman Svarych, WWII Ukrain­ian Nazi satrap Yaroslav Stetsko’s per­son­al sec­re­tary in the 1980’s, was instru­men­tal in the spawn­ing of Azov. Svarych was the Min­is­ter of Jus­tice of Ukraine under three dif­fer­ent admin­is­tra­tions. (That is the equiv­a­lent of U.S. Attor­ney Gen­er­al.)

7.–Ukrainian revi­sion­ist Volodymyr Via­tro­vych served as Min­is­ter of Edu­ca­tion in Ukraine.

8.–Ukrainian school chil­dren are now taught the doc­trine of fas­cist and anti-Semit­ic ide­o­logue Ulas Sam­chuk.

9.–Apologists for the Ukrain­ian fas­cists cite Vlodymyr Zelensky’s Jew­ish her­itage as proof that Ukraine isn’t infest­ed with Nazis. Zelen­sky is exten­sive­ly net­worked with the Azov Nazis.

10.–Former U.S. Air­borne sol­dier Bri­an Boyenger appears to have assist­ed the Geor­gian Legion in the Maid­an false-flag sniper killings. Boyenger also pre­sides over Task Force Plu­to, which has incor­po­rat­ed U.S. Nazis into its ranks, includ­ing indict­ed mur­der­ers.

11.–Former Marine and U.S. Nazi Christo­pher Pohlhaus is train­ing Amer­i­can Nazis to fight in Ukraine. One won­ders if his trainees will return to the U.S. in order to sub­due those who fig­ure to be blamed for “los­ing” Ukraine.

1a. Gen­er­al Walk­er and the Mur­der of Pres­i­dent Kennedy by Jef­frey H. Cau­field, M.D.; More­land Press [HC]; Copy­right 2015 Jef­frey H. Cau­field; ISBN-13: 978–0‑9915637–0‑8; pp. 86–87.

. . . . Gar­ri­son did not pro­vide an expla­na­tion for all of the [David Fer­rie] note’s sub­ject mat­ter. How­ev­er, he did know the mean­ing of “fly­ing Barag­o­na in the Beech.” “Beech” refers to the mod­el of Fer­rie’s air­plane, a Beechcraft. Barag­o­na was a Nazi from Fort Sill. . . .

. . . . Gar­ri­son also obtained a tran­script of a let­ter writ­ten by Fer­rie to Barag­o­na. Next to Barag­o­na’s name, Gar­ri­son wrote: “Note Barag­o­na is impor­tant.” The let­ter had been sent to Gar­ri­son by Glenn Pinch­back, and a car­bon copy was sent to Mendel Rivers, a con­gress­man from Geor­gia. (Pinch­back worked in the Oper­a­tions Com­mand at Fort Sill, where he inter­cept­ed mail.) In the let­ter, Fer­rie shared his dream of the re-uni­fi­ca­tion of Ger­many and liv­ing in a world where all the cur­ren­cy was in Deutschmarks. Pinch­back­’s sum­ma­tion of the let­ter described a “Neo-Nazi plot to enslave Amer­i­ca in the name of anti-Com­mu­nism,” and “a neo-Nazi plot gar­gan­tu­an in scope.” The Fer­rie let­ter spoke of the need to kill all the Kennedys and Mar­tin Luther King, Jr. . . . Pinch­back also report­ed­ly obtained a let­ter from David Fer­rie to Barag­o­na con­fess­ing his role in the assas­si­na­tion of Robert Gehrig, who was a Nazi and Fort Sill sol­dier. . . .”

1b. “Wit­ness: Por­traits of the liv­ing the news;” The New York Times; 7/9/2023; p. 2.

Kaly­na Mazepa, North Collins, N.Y. A Plast is a Ukrain­ian sum­mer camp, and I am the fourth gen­er­a­tion of my fam­i­ly to be part of one. We spend a lot of time in nature, but we also incor­po­rate our Ukrain­ian her­itage into it. For the last two weeks, I’ve been train­ing to become a coun­selor. It’s cool to help make mem­o­ries for the younger kids. It’s more impor­tant now than ever to be sur­round­ed by your Ukrain­ian her­itage and have peo­ple to share it with.

2. “Chrys­tia Freeland’s Nazi Prob­lem: Scott Rit­ter responds to a sub­scriber’s crit­i­cism” by Scott Rit­ter; Scott Rit­ter Extra; 11/14/2022.

. . . . On the sur­face, mem­ber­ship in Plast seems like a harm­less enough activity—it is a main­stream scout­ing orga­ni­za­tion. Indeed, in June 2019 the Ukrain­ian Verk­hov­na Rada (Par­lia­ment) adopt­ed a law—“On State Recog­ni­tion and Sup­port of Plast.”

Plast is the Nation­al Scout Orga­ni­za­tion of Ukraine.

While there were oth­er Scout-like orga­ni­za­tions in Ukraine, the new law made Plast the only one autho­rized to oper­ate through­out Ukraine. “The pur­pose of the state recog­ni­tion of Plast is the insti­tu­tion­al sup­port of Plast so that Plast becomes acces­si­ble to every child and young per­son in Ukraine, while the Plast move­ment is acces­si­ble to all chil­dren and young­sters who per­ma­nent­ly reside out­side of Ukraine.”

Plast branch­es were ordered to be formed in every city, town and vil­lage in Ukraine, and oblig­es all “local self-gov­ern­ment bod­ies” to incor­po­rate Plast into “pro­grams of local sig­nif­i­cance regard­ing chil­dren and young peo­ple.”

The Ukrain­ian Plast orga­ni­za­tion was estab­lished in Lvov in 1911–1912. Its pur­pose was to pre­pare its membership—children—for war, main­ly through com­bat train­ing and weapons han­dling.

Both Stepan Ban­dera and Roman Shukhevych, two noto­ri­ous Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists who fought along­side Nazi Ger­many, came up through the ranks of Plast.

Ban­dera and Shukhevych drew upon Plast to recruit the man­pow­er they used to fill the ranks of the Roland and Nightin­gale bat­tal­ions, which in 1939 swept into Poland under the oper­a­tional con­trol of Nazi Ger­many where they car­ried out the sys­temic rape, tor­ture, and mur­der of tens of thou­sands of Jews and Poles.

Plast vet­er­ans filled the ranks of the legion of Ukrain­ian youth who flocked to the Nazi cause through­out World War Two and were respon­si­ble for some of the most hor­rif­ic war crimes imag­in­able, includ­ing the mur­der in 1941 of tens of thou­sands of Jews at Babi Yar, in Ukraine, and more than 100,000 poles in Vol­hy­nia, Poland, in 1943.

Plast ven­er­ates both Ban­dera and Shukhevych as Ukrain­ian nation­al heroes. To Plast mem­bers, the red and black col­ors on the scarf Free­land held in Toron­to hold a spe­cial mean­ing: “Ukrain­ian red blood spilled on Ukrain­ian black earth.”

Plast is to Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists like the Hitler Youth was to Ger­man Nazis.

It is an orga­ni­za­tion designed to brain­wash the future gen­er­a­tions of Ukrain­ian youth, whether in Ukraine or dias­po­ra, on the white suprema­cist ultra-nation­al­is­tic dog­ma orig­i­nat­ed by its heroes, Stepan Ban­dera and Roman Shukhevych.

This mod­ern-day Hitler Youth-like move­ment is now main­streamed, by law, in Ukrain­ian soci­ety. . . .

3. Gehlen: Spy of the Cen­tu­ry by E.H. Cookridge; Ran­dom House [HC]; Copy­right 1971 by Euro­pean Copy­right Com­pa­ny Lim­it­ed; ISBN 0–394-47313–2; pp. 362–363.

. . . . Gehlen even set up a num­ber of “cells” in the Unit­ed States. . . . the trail led to the Asso­ci­a­tion of Amer­i­can Cit­i­zens of Ger­man Ori­gin, which was receiv­ing large sub­si­dies from an unspec­i­fied Fed­er­al Ger­man gov­ern­ment department—the Bun­desnachri­ten­di­enst, it was lat­er estab­lished. This for­eign sub­sidy amount­ed to the hand­some sum of 280,000 dol­lars in 1964 and was increased in lat­er years. . . . Not so sat­is­fac­to­ry at first were the expla­na­tions of Gehlen’s con­nec­tions with the large orga­ni­za­tions of Ukraini­ans, Poles, Lithua­ni­ans, Lat­vians and oth­er East Euro­pean immi­grants in the Unit­ed States, which received finance and advice from three ‘reg­is­tered’ BND agents—Roman Hen­linger, alias ‘Dr. Grau,’ Vic­tor Sale­mann and Alexan­der Wieber. . . .

4. “Why did Stan­ford stu­dents host a group of neo-Nazis? The Azov bat­tal­ion, a neo-Nazi Ukrain­ian unit, has found friends among America’s elite” by Lev Golinkin; For­ward; 7/3/2023.

Con­ver­sa­tions about white suprema­cy in Amer­i­ca today typ­i­cal­ly cen­ter on right-wing media and incen­di­ary politi­cians who blast out racist dog whis­tles.

But hate doesn’t need dem­a­gogues to get main­streamed; it has also found an out­let at elite uni­ver­si­ties.

On June 29, Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty host­ed a del­e­ga­tion from the Azov Brigade, a neo-Nazi for­ma­tion in the Ukrain­ian Nation­al Guard. The pan­el, dur­ing which Azov’s neo-Nazi insignia was pro­ject­ed onto the wall, was attend­ed by not­ed polit­i­cal sci­en­tist Fran­cis Fukuya­ma, who posed for a pho­to­graph with the del­e­ga­tion.

This event — and the dis­turb­ing lack of reac­tion from Jew­ish orga­ni­za­tions — show­cas­es the lim­its of America’s com­mit­ment to com­bat­ing white suprema­cy.

Call it the Ukraine excep­tion.

Before Russia’s 2022 inva­sion, near­ly every West­ern insti­tu­tion raised alarms about Azov. Putin’s brazen attack on Ukraine led to a much deserved out­pour­ing of sup­port for the coun­try. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, it also led to sup­pres­sion of those who crit­i­cize the dark side of Kyiv: its reliance on far-right mil­i­tary ele­ments, the most promi­nent exam­ple of which is Azov.

Lis­ten to That Jew­ish News Show, a smart and thought­ful look at the week in Jew­ish news from the jour­nal­ists at the For­ward, now avail­able on Apple and Spo­ti­fy:

Even amid today’s surge of anti­semitism glob­al­ly, Azov has become the Teflon Neo-Nazis: free­dom fight­ers who can do no wrong, cel­e­brat­ed across Amer­i­ca, includ­ing at pres­ti­gious insti­tu­tions like Stan­ford.

All too often, this adu­la­tion of a neo-Nazi for­ma­tion has been met with silence by the Jew­ish com­mu­ni­ty.

From neo-Nazis to heroes 

Azov began in 2014 as a para­mil­i­tary bat­tal­ion formed out of a neo-Nazi street gang; it helped Kyiv fight back against Russ­ian-backed rebels in east­ern Ukraine. Azov even­tu­al­ly grew into a brigade in Ukraine’s Nation­al Guard. In addi­tion to com­mit­ting war crimes, the unit is noto­ri­ous for its recruit­ment of rad­i­cals from around the world, includ­ing Amer­i­ca.

Azov’s rad­i­cal­ism has been tracked by the Simon Wiesen­thal Cen­ter and the Anti-Defama­tion League, banned as a hate group by Face­book and blocked from receiv­ing weapons by Con­gress.

But then, Russ­ian pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin used Azov as “jus­ti­fi­ca­tion” for his inva­sion. Moscow need­ed to sell the war to the pub­lic — it exploit­ed Azov’s exis­tence by false­ly paint­ing Ukraine as teem­ing with fas­cists and Russia’s inva­sion as a “denaz­i­fi­ca­tion” mis­sion.

The reac­tion of the West played in Azov’s favor. The exis­tence of white suprema­cists cer­tain­ly doesn’t give Putin the right to invade Ukraine. The Kremlin’s premise of “denaz­i­fi­ca­tion” also rings hol­low, con­sid­er­ing there are plen­ty of neo-Nazis fight­ing for Moscow.

But for Azov, Moscow’s obses­sion has been a tick­et to the lime­light. Buoyed by the notion that If Putin hates them, they must be the good guys, brigade mem­bers have been wel­comed to Con­gress and laud­ed on tele­vi­sion.

In addi­tion to an Azov vet­er­an, the Stan­ford appear­ance fea­tured Katery­na Prokopenko, whose hus­band Denys was the brigade’s com­man­der through the spring of 2022.

Denys Prokopenko has been pho­tographed with his platoon’s infor­mal insignia of a beard­ed Totenkopf, a type of skull-and-cross­bones used by the SS. He was also fea­tured on the cov­er of Azov’s unof­fi­cial mag­a­zine, which uses the Son­nen­rad neo-Nazi rune favored by white ter­ror­ists like the per­pe­tra­tor of last year’s mas­sacre in Buf­fa­lo, New York.

Third Reich insignia on an elite cam­pus

Last week’s event wasn’t Azov’s first Stan­ford tour – a del­e­ga­tion was also wel­comed there last fall. Iron­i­cal­ly, one of Stanford’s own insti­tutes pub­lished a report chron­i­cling Azov’s white suprema­cy mere months before the brigade’s vis­it.

When asked about Azov’s return to cam­pus, a uni­ver­si­ty spokesper­son told me via email on June 27 that the event was co-spon­sored by the Ukrain­ian Stu­dent Asso­ci­a­tion at Stan­ford at the Depart­ment of Slav­ic Lan­guages and Lit­er­a­tures. “The uni­ver­si­ty does not take posi­tions on out­side speak­ers that groups with­in our com­mu­ni­ty want to hear from,” they added.

But Azov’s vis­it con­cerns an issue Stan­ford has tak­en a posi­tion on: Nazi sym­bol­ism.

The fly­er adver­tis­ing the Azov event con­tains the brigade’s offi­cial insignia, which is the wolf­san­gel, yet anoth­er hate sym­bol used by both the Third Reich and today’s neo-Nazis.

This isn’t the first Stan­ford inci­dent involv­ing Nazi imagery. How­ev­er, the lack of response on Azov stands in sharp con­trast to Stanford’s actions in pre­vi­ous cas­es. 

In 2019, Stan­ford was embroiled in con­tro­ver­sy after left-wing car­toon­ist Eli Val­ley was invit­ed to speak on cam­pus. Val­ley, whose art­work fea­tures grotesque satire using Nazi imagery, was met with protests. Indeed, it led to uni­ver­si­ty offi­cials issu­ing a lengthy state­ment con­demn­ing anti­semitism.

This March, the school addressed the dis­cov­ery of swastikas in a dor­mi­to­ry by stat­ing, “Stan­ford whole­heart­ed­ly rejects anti­semitism, racism, hatred, and asso­ci­at­ed sym­bols, which are rep­re­hen­si­ble and will not be tol­er­at­ed.”

When more anti­se­mit­ic attacks fol­lowed in April, Stanford’s pres­i­dent said: “I want to make it very clear that we will not tol­er­ate anti­semitism and the sym­bols of anti­semitism here on cam­pus. It is some­thing we need to erad­i­cate.”

Yet despite these dec­la­ra­tions of com­mit­ment to com­bat­ing anti­semitism, Stan­ford has not respond­ed to repeat­ed inquiries about the university’s posi­tion regard­ing the Azov event dis­play­ing the wolf­san­gel.

We seem end­less­ly sur­prised at politi­cians like Don­ald Trump who refuse to accept respon­si­bil­i­ty for actions that enable big­otry. It shouldn’t be sur­pris­ing, con­sid­er­ing dem­a­gogues don’t both­er with respon­si­bil­i­ty; that’s what makes them dem­a­gogues. 

But what about a pil­lar of edu­ca­tion and enlight­en­ment like a pres­ti­gious uni­ver­si­ty? What’s Stanford’s excuse? 

Call­ing out neo-Nazism: Void where pro­hib­it­ed

Our tol­er­ance of Azov seems even more alarm­ing when we con­sid­er reac­tions to neo-Nazism that don’t involve the brigade.

In 2018, Rep. Matt Gaetz was caught invit­ing a Holo­caust denier to the State of the Union. Gaetz’s deci­sion to plat­form hate on Capi­tol Hill was con­demned by col­leagues and the ADL.

But there have been no denun­ci­a­tions of numer­ous law­mak­ers who wel­comed Azov fight­ers to Wash­ing­ton. This includes Rep. Mar­cy Kap­tur, who was pho­tographed with an Azov vet­er­an whose Twit­ter con­tained pic­tures of him wear­ing a shirt with 1488 (neo-Nazi code) and “likes” of a Hitler pho­to and “Death to Kikes” graf­fi­ti. 

Indeed, Azov del­e­ga­tions to Wash­ing­ton proud­ly adver­tise their meet­ings on the Hill. 

Or see how Jew­ish media and the State Depart­ment took the trou­ble to con­demn musi­cian Roger Waters for wear­ing a fas­cist uni­form dur­ing con­certs (this is part of Waters’ per­for­mance of The Wall, a satire of fas­cism).

The very same day, The New York Times exposed the preva­lence of Nazi sym­bols in Ukraine’s armed forces, which receive bil­lions in Amer­i­can weapons. You’d imag­ine this news would be at least as con­cern­ing as a musician’s cos­tume. Yet nei­ther the State Depart­ment nor Jew­ish watch­dogs react­ed to it (and nei­ther the State Depart­ment or the ADL have respond­ed to my requests for com­ment).

5. “Author Fran­cis Fukuya­ma, a Stan­ford fel­low, backs far-right Azov group after school vis­it” by Alec Regim­balSFGATE; 7/12/2023.

Author Fran­cis Fukuya­ma, a Stan­ford fel­low, backs far-right Azov group after school vis­it

Fran­cis Fukuya­ma, a well-known author and researcher at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty, said he is “proud to sup­port” the Azov brigade, a Ukrain­ian mil­i­tary unit with long­stand­ing far-right ties and con­nec­tions to neo-Nazis. 

In an email to SFGATE, Fukuya­ma — who was pho­tographed along­side rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the brigade at an on-cam­pus event on June 29 — didn’t back down from asso­ci­at­ing with the group, which he said is made up of “heroes.” 

“I think you need to do a lit­tle more read­ing on Azov,” he wrote. “They orig­i­nat­ed among Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists, but to call them neo-Nazis is to accept Russia’s fram­ing of what they rep­re­sent today. By the time they defend­ed Mar­i­opol they were ful­ly inte­grat­ed into the [Armed Forces of Ukraine] and are heroes that I’m proud to sup­port.” 

Fukuya­ma is known fore­most as the author of the 1992 book “The End of His­to­ry and the Last Man,” in which he argued that West­ern lib­er­al democ­ra­cy rep­re­sent­ed the “end point of mankind’s ide­o­log­i­cal evo­lu­tion.” He is also the Olivi­er Nomelli­ni Senior Fel­low at Stanford’s Free­man Spogli Insti­tute for Inter­na­tion­al Stud­ies, which serves as a non­par­ti­san research hub with a focus on inter­na­tion­al affairs.

Just last year, that same insti­tute pub­lished a report on what’s known as the “Azov Move­ment,” the broad­er net­work of mil­i­tary and polit­i­cal orga­ni­za­tions that were born out of what was orig­i­nal­ly a bat­tal­ion. The institute’s report said that Azov “mix­es clas­sic right wing themes, includ­ing anti­semitism, eth­no­cen­trism, homo­pho­bia, and racism, with more pop­ulist eco­nom­ic pro­pos­als argu­ing for a greater role of the state in soci­ety.“

When Rus­sia invad­ed Ukraine in Feb­ru­ary of last year, Russ­ian Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin said his osten­si­ble goal was to “denaz­i­fy” Ukraine through force — a com­ment many saw as a direct ref­er­ence to groups like Azov. While Putin’s claim that the Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ment is run by neo-Nazis has been wide­ly dis­missed, and was used as a false pre­tense to invade Ukraine, the coun­try nev­er­the­less has some real far-right ele­ments.  

First formed as a para­mil­i­tary group in 2014, Azov quick­ly earned praise for its prowess on the bat­tle­field as it fought along­side Ukrain­ian forces and oth­er para­mil­i­tary groups in clash­es with Russ­ian-backed sep­a­ratists. Just months after its ini­tial for­ma­tion, the unit was inte­grat­ed into the Ukrain­ian Nation­al Guard as an offi­cial “Spe­cial Pur­pos­es Reg­i­ment.” Since Russia’s most recent inva­sion, the unit has received wide­spread praise from West­ern insti­tu­tions and offi­cials for its hero­ics in the field — name­ly the role it played in defend­ing Mar­i­upol from Russ­ian invaders in the spring of 2022. 

But apart from its com­bat exper­tise, the brigade is also known for its asso­ci­a­tion with neo-Nazi ide­ol­o­gy and oth­er far-right beliefs. Azov was formed by Andriy Bilet­sky, the founder of two oth­er far-right groups in Ukraine, who in 2010 report­ed­ly said that the country’s nation­al pur­pose was to “lead the white races of the world in a final cru­sade … against Semi­te-led Unter­men­schen [infe­ri­or races].” Azov often uses sym­bols that are sim­i­lar to those used by Nazi sol­diers dur­ing World War II, includ­ing the wolf­san­geltotenkopf and son­nen­rad

In fact, the group’s offi­cial insignia bears a strik­ing resem­blance to the wolf­san­gel; accord­ing to the Anti-Defama­tion League, the wolf­san­gel was com­mon­ly used as a divi­sion­al insignia of the Waf­fen-SS, the com­bat branch of the Ger­man mil­i­tary under the Nazis. The brigade has report­ed­ly denied the asso­ci­a­tion, claim­ing that their insignia is an amal­gam of the let­ters “N” and “I” which stand for “nation­al idea.” The wolf­san­gel appeared on mate­ri­als pro­mot­ing the June 29 event at Stan­ford. 

6. “Imag­ined Geo­gra­phies of Cen­tral and East­ern Europe: The Con­cept of Inter­mar­i­um” by Mar­lene Laru­elle and Ellen Rivera; Covert Action Mag­a­zine; 3/23/2019.

. . . . The co-founder of the CUN and for­mer­ly Yaroslav Stetsko’s pri­vate sec­re­tary, the U.S.-born Roman Zvarych (1953), rep­re­sents a younger gen­er­a­tion of the Ukrain­ian émi­gré com­mu­ni­ty active dur­ing the Cold War and a direct link from the ABN to the Azov Bat­tal­ion. . . . Zvarych par­tic­i­pat­ed in the activ­i­ties of the Anti-Bol­she­vik Bloc of Nations in the 1980s. . . . In Feb­ru­ary 2005, after Vik­tor Yushchenko’s elec­tion, Zvarych was appoint­ed Min­is­ter of Jus­tice. . . . Accord­ing to Andriy Bilet­sky, the first com­man­der of the Azov bat­tal­ion, a civ­il para­mil­i­tary unit cre­at­ed in the wake of the Euro­maid­an, Zvarych was head of the head­quar­ters of the Azov Cen­tral Com­mit­tee in 2015 and sup­port­ed the Azov bat­tal­ion with ‘vol­un­teers’ and polit­i­cal advice through his Zvarych Foun­da­tion. . . .

7. “Imag­ined Geo­gra­phies of Cen­tral and East­ern Europe: The Con­cept of Inter­mar­i­um” by Mar­lene Laru­elle and Ellen Rivera; Covert Action Mag­a­zine; 3/23/2019.

. . . . This reha­bil­i­ta­tion trend accel­er­at­ed after the Euro­Maid­an. In 2015, just before the sev­en­ti­eth anniver­sary of Vic­to­ry Day, Volodymyr Via­tro­vych, Min­is­ter of Edu­ca­tion and long-time direc­tor of the Insti­tute for the Study of the Lib­er­a­tion Move­ment, an orga­ni­za­tion found­ed to pro­mote the hero­ic nar­ra­tive of the OUN–UPA, called on the par­lia­ment to vote for a set of four laws that cod­i­fied the new, post-Maid­an his­to­ri­og­ra­phy. Two of them are par­tic­u­lar­ly influ­en­tial in the ongo­ing mem­o­ry war with Rus­sia. One decrees that OUN and UPA mem­bers are to be con­sid­ered ‘fight­ers for Ukrain­ian inde­pen­dence in the twen­ti­eth cen­tu­ry,’ mak­ing pub­lic denial of this unlaw­ful. . . .

8. “The Nazi Streets of Ukraine” by Mark Sle­bo­da; The Real Pol­i­tick with Mark Sle­bo­da; 5/12/2023.

. . . . [Ulas] Sam­chuk . . . wrote arti­cles lion­iz­ing his per­son­al idol — ‘Adolf Hitler.’ In Ukraine today, Ulas Sam­chuk is pro­mot­ed by the West-backed Kiev Putsch regime as a hero and great fig­ure of Ukrain­ian lit­er­a­ture and cul­ture, taught and required read­ing in schools. . . .

9. “Zelen­sky holds court with Ukraine’s most noto­ri­ous neo-Nazi” by Alexan­der Rubin­stein; The Gray Zone; 8/16/2023

West­ern media has dis­missed evi­dence of neo-Nazi influ­ence in Ukraine by cit­ing Pres­i­dent Zelensky’s Jew­ish her­itage. But new footage pub­lished by Zelen­sky shows the leader open­ly col­lab­o­rat­ing with a fas­cist ide­o­logue who once pledged to “lead the white races of the world in a final crusade…against Semi­te-led Unter­men­schen.”

Ukrain­ian Pres­i­dent Vlodymyr Zelen­sky has uploaded a video to his Telegram chan­nel show­ing him hold­ing court with one of the most noto­ri­ous neo-Nazis in mod­ern Ukrain­ian his­to­ry: Azov Bat­tal­ion founder Andriy Bilet­sky.

On August 14, just over an hour after Sec­re­tary of State Antho­ny Blinken announced anoth­er $200 mil­lion in mil­i­tary aid to Kiev, Ukrain­ian Pres­i­dent Vlodomyr Zelen­sky pub­lished the video depict­ing what he called an “open con­ver­sa­tion” with Ukraine’s 3rd Sep­a­rate Assault Brigade.

“I am grate­ful to every­one who defends our coun­try and peo­ple, who brings our vic­to­ry clos­er,” Zelen­sky wrote, fol­low­ing his encounter with the unit on the out­skirts of Bakhmut.

While casu­al West­ern observers might not have real­ized it, the brigade Zelen­sky was address­ing is actu­al­ly the newest iter­a­tion of Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Bat­tal­ion. 

“The 3rd sep­a­rate assault brigade, excel­lent fight­ers,” Zelen­sky wrote days after the con­sul­ta­tion, in a Twit­ter post which also allud­ed to a sep­a­rate meet­ing with the Aidar Bat­tal­ion, anoth­er neo-fas­cist out­fit that has been accused of war crimes by Amnesty Inter­na­tion­al. “They have stopped the ene­my from advanc­ing towards Kos­tiantyniv­ka and pushed the occu­piers back up to 8 kilo­me­ters.”

But the group’s ori­gins are no secret. Describ­ing their most recent rebrand in a YouTube video released in Jan­u­ary, the unit explained: “Today we offi­cial­ly announce that the SSO AZOV is expand­ing to a brigade. From now on, we are the 3rd sep­a­rate assault brigade of the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.”

Like its pre­de­ces­sor, the unit is led by Andriy Bilet­sky, who found­ed the Azov Bat­tal­ion and has long served as a fig­ure­head for the close­ly-aligned Nation­al Corps polit­i­cal move­ment.

But in spite of Biletsky’s rich Nazi pedi­gree, the video Zelen­sky pub­lished shows him shar­ing a moment of bon­homie with a white nation­al­ist mil­i­tant who has described Jews as “our ene­my,” or as the “real mas­ters” of the oli­garchs and craven politi­cians that have cor­rupt­ed Ukraine.

10. “Lord of the Under­world: Meet the Para­troop­er from North Car­oli­na who Helped Orches­trate the War in Ukraine” by  Evan Reif;  7/17/2023. 

. . . . Mamu­lashvili had worked with Ukrain­ian nation­al­ists before, dur­ing the 1992 Abk­haz war he fought as a child sol­dier along­side the neo-Nazi Argo Bat­tal­ion, the armed wing of the UNA-UNSO.

Argo worked as mer­ce­nar­ies dur­ing the ear­ly 1990s and car­ried out an unsuc­cess­ful oper­a­tion to res­cue Mamu­lashvili and his father from encir­clement in Abk­hazia. Mamu­lashvili did not for­get their efforts and wast­ed lit­tle time repay­ing them dur­ing the Maid­an. UNA-UNSO would lat­er co-found the infa­mous fas­cist mili­tia Right Sec­tor along­side a coali­tion of oth­er right-wing groups.

In ear­ly 2014, the ongo­ing Maid­an coup reached a stale­mate. Time and bit­ter cold had dri­ven many of the pro­test­ers on both sides back to their homes and the rev­o­lu­tion was fac­ing the very real dan­ger of sim­ply fiz­zling out. To pre­vent this, Mamu­lashvili need­ed a spark of vio­lence to light the fire of rev­o­lu­tion. He hatched an auda­cious plan to fire on the crowds and blame the attacks on the Yanukovych gov­ern­ment. His point man for the plan was the U.S. Army-trained sniper, Bri­an Boyenger.

On Feb­ru­ary 20, 2014, snipers, alleged­ly under the direct com­mand of Boyenger, opened fire on the crowds from the Maid­an-occu­pied Kyiv Phil­har­mon­ic build­ing, killing dozens of both police and pro­test­ers. The plan worked, and the sniper attacks were the piv­otal moment that gave the Maid­an the momen­tum to final­ly depose the demo­c­ra­t­i­cal­ly elect­ed Yanukovych gov­ern­ment. While the Maid­an forces quick­ly blamed the gov­ern­ment for the attacks, NATO offi­cials sus­pect­ed a provo­ca­tion from the begin­ning.

The attacks remain offi­cial­ly unsolved and, as the Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ment destroyed all evi­dence, it is unlike­ly that those respon­si­ble will ever be brought to jus­tice. . . .

Adding to this, Mamulashvili’s Geor­gian Legion is rife with neo-Nazis and oth­er fas­cists from around the world. The orga­ni­za­tion even uses Paul Gray; an infa­mous neo-Nazi ter­ror­ist who was one of the orga­niz­ers of the dead­ly Char­lottesville “Unite the Right” ral­ly, as its Eng­lish-speak­ing spokesman. Gray has made dozens of appear­ances on Fox News, proud­ly extolling the virtues and com­bat prowess of the Geor­gian Legion while beg­ging for more weapons.

While Mamu­lashvili insists that all Legion recruits are vet­ted and neo-Nazis or fas­cists are reject­ed, Gray’s mem­ber­ship proves the Legion’s “vet­ting” is lit­tle more than PR to assuage the con­sciences of guilty lib­er­als. Even a cur­so­ry Google search would reveal that Gray has been a mem­ber of mul­ti­ple neo-Nazi ter­ror­ist groups, such as the Tra­di­tion­al­ist Worker’s Par­ty and Atom­waf­fen, who are infa­mous for call­ing in bomb threats against His­tor­i­cal­ly Black Col­leges and University’s (HBCU’s).

The impli­ca­tion that Berlus­coni or any oth­er fas­cist would oppose the Maid­an or the Geor­gian Legion on ide­o­log­i­cal grounds is there­fore ridicu­lous and lit­tle more than a des­per­ate act of pro­jec­tion.

It should also be men­tioned that the paper respon­si­ble for this exposé, now called Insid­eOver, cur­rent­ly has jour­nal­ists embed­ded with the Ukrain­ian Armed Forces and is active­ly report­ing from the front lines of the con­flict. As of the time of this arti­cle, they have released 85 videos from Ukraine on their YouTube chan­nel, the vast major­i­ty of which were made in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Ukrain­ian Armed Forces.

Even by the low stan­dards of NATO pro­pa­gan­da, it beg­gars belief that the Ukrain­ian mil­i­tary would allow Russ­ian agents into their midst, let alone work along­side them.

Regard­less of when he arrived in Ukraine, Bri­an Boyenger’s hands are not clean. He was instru­men­tal in the train­ing and for­ma­tion of the var­i­ous far-right units includ­ing Azov, Right Sec­tor, the Geor­gian Legion, and many oth­ers. These units are all cred­i­bly accused of count­less war crimes, and many of them have even been con­vict­ed in Ukrain­ian courts of crimes as vile as rap­ing chil­dren.

In 2015, Boyenger broke his usu­al­ly immac­u­late OPSEC to chat with Swedish neo-Nazi and first-gen­er­a­tion Azov mem­ber Mikael Skillt, once described by the BBC as a “White Pow­er war­rior,” for advice on smug­gling anti-materiel weapons into Ukraine.

Boyenger dis­cuss­es smug­gling anti-materiel can­nons for Azov. [Source: Twit­ter.com]

The con­ver­sa­tion is clear proof that Boyenger was act­ing with the knowl­edge and in the inter­ests of the U.S. gov­ern­ment. Boyenger open­ly dis­cussed smug­gling oth­er­wise high­ly ille­gal weapons to a known ter­ror­ist on a pub­lic forum with what he says is State Depart­ment approval. Even aside from the obvi­ous impli­ca­tion of the State Depart­ment arm­ing Nazi ter­ror­ists, it seems very unlike­ly that a for­mer low-rank­ing enlist­ed Army sol­dier would be get­ting this sort of approval from the gov­ern­ment. Unless, of course, Bri­an Boyenger is some­thing more than that.

Once he arrived in Ukraine, Boyenger became more dif­fi­cult to track. Unlike most mer­ce­nar­ies in the coun­try, Boyenger keeps his exploits qui­et. He is not the type to upload his war crimes to Tik­Tok or brag about atroc­i­ties in inter­views. Most of what we know about him is due to his loose-lipped asso­ciates and even from the bits and pieces we can gath­er from sec­ond-hand sources, the pic­ture is very grim.

We do know that Boyenger was one of the found­ing mem­bers of the Geor­gian Legion from their press releas­es. Inter­est­ing­ly, the Legion repeat­ed­ly men­tions that Boyenger was a for­mer offi­cer, while Boyenger had claimed to be a spe­cial­ist in a Legion pro­pa­gan­da video. If Boyenger was indeed an offi­cer, this would mean that his mil­i­tary career con­tin­ued for years after Iraq, and the fact that he would try to hide this would indi­cate that he had a part of his mil­i­tary career he did not want to talk about.

Some­one is lying, but it is unclear who and for what pur­pose. Did Mamu­lashvili lie to make Boyenger seem more impor­tant, or did Boyenger lie to con­ceal that he was far more than a sim­ple sol­dier? It would not be out of char­ac­ter for Mamu­lashvili, a man whose past and exploits seem to grow more out­ra­geous with each telling, to lie to the media. The only ques­tion is what would he gain for lying in this case?

Does it mat­ter to the read­ers of Ukrain­s­ka Prav­da if Bri­an Boyenger was an offi­cer or a spe­cial­ist? Would the Ukrain­ian read­ers even know the dif­fer­ence? As Boyenger was vet­ted by both the U.S. and Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ments, Mamu­lashvili knows the truth, but only he and Boyenger know if he is telling it or not.

It is unlike­ly that we will ever learn the truth of this mat­ter. How­ev­er, we do know some details of Boyenger’s exploits in Ukraine, and this is thanks most­ly to his com­rade at arms and close friend, a for­mer U.S. Army sol­dier by the name of Craig Lang. Togeth­er, Lang and Boyenger found­ed a unit made up entire­ly of crim­i­nals, ter­ror­ists and neo-Nazis known as Task Force Plu­to.

Task Force Plu­to

“What they’re say­ing is, ‘Here’s a group in Ukraine that’s going beyond ide­ol­o­gy, they’re a mili­tia group that’s active­ly recruit­ing for the cause. That’s appeal­ing to peo­ple who want to pro­mote white nation­al­ism or pre­serve Euro­pean-Amer­i­can cul­ture. The fact that they’re fight­ing is in and of itself impor­tant.”– Mar­i­lyn Mayo, ADL ter­ror­ism researcher

Craig Lang’s sto­ry is even more sus­pi­cious than Boyenger’s. Lang was a vet­er­an of Iraq and Afghanistan, who served in the Army until his dis­hon­or­able dis­charge in 2014. A few months pri­or, Lang had gone AWOL and dri­ven across the coun­try to mur­der his day-old son, wife, and her fam­i­ly by sur­round­ing their home with land­mines. For­tu­nate­ly, Lang’s plot failed, and he was arrest­ed and dis­charged soon after.

After some time work­ing on oil rigs in North Dako­ta, Lang first came to Ukraine in 2015 while still in court for his ear­li­er plot. It is dif­fi­cult to imag­ine how a fugi­tive want­ed for such seri­ous crimes could leave the coun­try, tran­sit through sev­er­al U.S.-aligned coun­tries and make his way to Ukraine, where he passed an alleged­ly rig­or­ous vet­ting process. Unless, like Boyenger, he had the bless­ing of the gov­ern­ment.

What is even more sus­pi­cious is that Lang did it three times. He left Ukraine in 2018 after he became upset that the war had ebbed in inten­si­ty. He want­ed action, and he thought he could find it in South Sudan. Lang and his com­rade, anoth­er desert­er-turned-ter­ror­ist named Alex Zwiefel­hofer, attempt­ed to sneak into the coun­try via Kenya where they were caught and deport­ed.

Zwiefel­hofer, the son of a police chief from Wis­con­sin, is anoth­er for­mer U.S. Army sol­dier who went AWOL in 2016. His social media accounts were pep­pered with neo-Nazi memes and “jokes,” includ­ing Zwiefel­hofer wear­ing a Hitler mus­tache and a shirt that said, “Help more bees… shoot refugees.”

Like many oth­er Amer­i­can neo-Nazis, notably Dylan Roof, he is an open admir­er of the unrec­og­nized colo­nial state of Rhode­sia and its sav­age form of apartheid. He often post­ed pro-Rhode­sia memes on Face­book and often sug­gest­ed that Rhode­sia did not go far enough in the sub­ju­ga­tion and vio­lent exploita­tion of its native peo­ple.

After desert­ing from the Army, Zwiefel­hofer attempt­ed to join the French For­eign Legion and was denied. Despite claims of a rig­or­ous vet­ting process, Bri­an Boyenger ignored all these red flags when he accept­ed Zwiefel­hofer into the ranks of Task Force Plu­to. Zwiefel­hofer fought along­side the unit in com­bat oper­a­tions and became friends with Craig Lang in the process. Even­tu­al­ly, the two became so close that Zwiefel­hofer joined Lang on his excur­sion.

When they land­ed in the Unit­ed States after their depor­ta­tion, Zwiefel­hofer was inter­viewed by the FBI, who found large amounts of child pornog­ra­phy on his phone. He was arrest­ed and spent sev­er­al months in jail await­ing tri­al until he bond­ed out and fled to Mia­mi along­side Lang with a plan to become mer­ce­nar­ies in Venezuela. The new front was the lat­est in the long line of America’s impe­r­i­al mis­ad­ven­tures and the tar­get of a failed “col­or rev­o­lu­tion” to over­throw the left-wing Maduro gov­ern­ment.

How­ev­er, Lang and Zwiefel­hofer need­ed mon­ey and so they put two guns for sale on the inter­net to help finance their jour­ney. The two men met the prospec­tive buy­ers, Ser­afin and Deana Loren­zo, at a church park­ing lot on April 9, 2018. Rather than hand over the weapons, Lang and Zwiefel­hofer opened fire, killing both the Loren­zos in a hail of bul­lets and then rob­bing their dead bod­ies.

Now with both mon­ey and guns, Lang and Zwiefel­hofer were ready to set off for Venezuela. They tried to book pas­sage on a ship but mur­dered the cap­tain in a pay­ment dis­pute. With their mon­ey gone and the walls slow­ly clos­ing in on them, the two men fled Flori­da to the Pacif­ic North­west, where they split up. After dis­pos­ing of the mur­der weapons, Zwiefel­hofer returned to his home in Wis­con­sin and was caught about a month lat­er.

The ever “lucky” Craig Lang eas­i­ly escaped the drag­net. Four months after the mur­ders, he drove to St. Louis, where he met with oth­er fugi­tive vet­er­ans to plan a return to Ukraine. Now want­ed for at least a dozen felonies, includ­ing mul­ti­ple mur­ders, Lang some­how walked through cus­toms and immi­gra­tion with­out any­one bat­ting an eye­lash. He even tagged him­self at Kyiv Air­port on Insta­gram.

Lang made one more attempt to return to Venezuela only a few days lat­er. Even after charges had been filed by the Depart­ment of Jus­tice, Lang was able to fly from Ukraine to Bogotá, Colom­bia, via Mex­i­co City. In Bogotá, Lang was some­how able to con­vince police to sell him weapons despite his rap sheet. He paid for the guns in cash and board­ed a bus to the bor­der town of Cúcu­ta, which had been at the epi­cen­ter of America’s failed attempt at a coup in Venezuela.

For rea­sons unknown, Lang failed to cross the bor­der for a sec­ond time. He returned to Ukraine, where he was embraced once more as an hon­ored mem­ber of the Ukrain­ian Armed Forces. Even after for­mal charges were issued against Lang and the U.S. gov­ern­ment had offi­cial­ly request­ed his extra­di­tion, Lang lives freely in Ukraine, where he lives with his wife and child.

The Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ment has refused mul­ti­ple requests to extra­dite Lang, and his com­rades in arms in Right Sec­tor have pro­vid­ed for his legal defense. Bri­an Boyenger’s old friend Mikael Skillt, now the head of a mer­ce­nary group, even threat­ened vio­lence if Lang were extra­dit­ed.

“He [Lang] has a lot of friends; he’s active in social media, he’s been involved in the war as long as any­one. If they would extra­dite him, there would be con­se­quences in terms of a demon­stra­tion.” – Mikael Skillt

Despite his claim to be “apo­lit­i­cal,” Lang often asso­ciates with neo-Nazis. Beyond his pub­lic affil­i­a­tions with Right Sec­tor, Task Force Plu­to is rife with neo-Nazis and oth­er far-right­ists almost to the exclu­sion of all oth­er mem­bers. Screen­shots of their social media show an open admi­ra­tion for Adolf Hitler and Nazi Ger­many, the ven­er­a­tion of racial vio­lence, rou­tine use of racial slurs, and open asso­ci­a­tion with oth­er vio­lent neo-Nazis around the world.

The unit’s pro­lif­ic recruit­ment of Amer­i­can neo-Nazis became so seri­ous that it drew the atten­tion of the U.S. Depart­ment of Jus­tice, who began inves­ti­gat­ing the group both for war crimes com­mit­ted in Ukraine, and a seri­ous wor­ry that its mem­bers would bring their skills back home with them.

Besides Lang and Zwiefel­hofer, oth­er mem­bers of Task Force Plu­to and asso­ci­at­ed groups have already made their way back to the Unit­ed States, where they are once more active in neo-Nazi groups. Task Force mem­ber Dal­ton Kennedy, orig­i­nal­ly of North Car­oli­na, has returned to join Patri­ot Front, anoth­er of the amal­ga­ma­tion of the groups respon­si­ble for the dead­ly Unite the Right Ral­ly. While less pub­lic today, Patri­ot Front remains an active neo-Nazi ter­ror­ist group, and Kennedy is still a mem­ber. He is only one of many such cas­es in a vast con­stel­la­tion of mili­tias oper­at­ing inside Ukraine.

The impli­ca­tion of this at the very least is that the Unit­ed States gov­ern­ment, through Bri­an Boyenger and the rest of its ongo­ing oper­a­tion, is open­ly arm­ing, train­ing, and fund­ing neo-Nazi ter­ror­ists who have killed not just Rus­sians and Ukraini­ans, but also Amer­i­can cit­i­zens on Amer­i­can soil. Per­haps most wor­ry­ing, the atroc­i­ties car­ried out by these men in Amer­i­ca are noth­ing com­pared to those they have been doing for years in Don­bas.

What price will we pay in the future, when this bloody seed grows into a tree of hatred with roots through­out the world?

Dur­ing their inves­ti­ga­tion, the FBI found evi­dence of rou­tine, seri­ous war crimes com­mit­ted by Task Force Plu­to mem­bers inside Ukraine. Leaked doc­u­ments show the FBI request­ed detailed infor­ma­tion from the Ukraini­ans on alleged crimes as ghast­ly as rape, human traf­fick­ing, pro­duc­tion of child pornog­ra­phy, pil­lag­ing, tor­ture and even behead­ing of POWs.

The FBI main­tains an open inves­ti­ga­tion on many of the Task Force’s mem­bers, includ­ing Lang and Boyenger. No results have been released, and no action has been tak­en against any­one except Craig Lang. At least one of the mem­bers, San­ti Pir­tle, joined the U.S. Army upon his return to Amer­i­ca and is cur­rent­ly an active-duty sol­dier based in Louisiana. It appears that Boyenger’s saga has gone full cir­cle. The ter­ror­ist tac­tics he learned from Col. Steele in Iraq and taught to Task Force Plu­to have been refined in Ukraine and are now being passed on to a new gen­er­a­tion of U.S. Army sol­diers. . . .

11. Amer­i­can Neo-Nazi Train­ing For­c­ces in Maine to Fight in Ukraine by Kyle Anza­lone | Aug 10, 2023

Christo­pher Pohlhaus, a for­mer Marine and promi­nent Neo-Nazi – has pur­chased land in Maine to train sol­diers to fight for Ukraine. He sees the war against Rus­sia as a unique chance to fight along­side the Azov Bat­tal­ion and defend a near­ly “all-white nation.”

Last year, Pohlhaus bought at least ten acres of land in Spring­field, Maine. Although he claims he owns over 100 acres. Pohlhaus has dis­cussed his ambi­tious plans for his Maine train­ing grounds on social media. In a Telegram chan­nel, he post­ed, “There will like­ly not be anoth­er chance in my life­time to fight along­side oth­er [Nation­al Social­ist] men against a mul­ti-eth­nic invad­ing empire to defend an almost all white nation.”

In a post on X, for­mer­ly Twit­ter, Pohlhaus con­firmed he hoped his Blood Tribe would join the Azov Bat­tal­ion and C14 – promi­nent Ukrain­ian Neo-Nazi mili­tias – in the fight against Rus­sia. Scott Hor­ton, Direc­tor of the Lib­er­tar­i­an Insi­ti­tute, Tweet­ed an arti­cle about the land in Maine and asked, “They going to fight with the Azov Bat­tal­ion and C14 on the east­ern front?” Pohlhaus – nick­named “The Ham­mer” – respond­ed direct­ly to Hor­ton, say­ing, “Yes, actu­al­ly.” 

It is unclear how far the Blood Tribe fight­ers have pro­gressed in their train­ing. One reporter vis­it­ed the site and said no group mem­bers were present. Local offi­cials report Pohlhaus has not begun apply­ing for per­mits to build struc­tures on his prop­er­ty. Pohlhaus said he has pur­chased a sawmill and plans to build cab­ins for his sol­diers. 

Since civ­il war broke out in Ukraine after a coup in 2014, Neo-Nazis have flocked to the coun­try to fight for Kiev. Ukrain­ian Neo-Nazis have held impor­tant posi­tions in gov­ern­ment, and nation­al social­ist mili­tias have been a cru­cial part of Kiev’s war machine. 

Ear­ly in the war, thou­sands of Neo-Nazis arrived in Ukraine to fight for a “shared vision for an ultra­na­tion­al­ist eth­no-state.” While Wash­ing­ton has attempt­ed to dis­miss the role of Neo-Nazis in Ukraine as Russ­ian pro­pa­gan­da, the New York Times admit­ted that West­ern jour­nal­ists were ask­ing Ukrain­ian troops to remove Neo-Nazi sym­bols before tak­ing pho­tos of them. 

Addi­tion­al­ly, the Russ­ian Vol­un­teer Corps – a mili­tia aligned with Kiev – used Amer­i­can weapons to car­ry out attacks inside Rus­sia. The fight­ers in the group open­ly wear Nazi sym­bols, such as the Black Sun. 

Pohlhaus also proud­ly dis­plays sym­bols of his nation­al social­ist ide­ol­o­gy. Ear­li­er this year, he led a protest in Ohio with sev­er­al mem­bers dis­play­ing swastikas. While most of his Blood Tribe mem­bers wore full masks, Pohlhaus exposed his face and marched with a swasti­ka flag. 




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