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The Ideology and Electoral Gravitas of Swoboda (Ukrainian Heirs to the OUN/B)

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COMMENT: The Orwellian tinge to the cov­er­age of the Ukrain­ian coup has masked the nature of the mil­i­tant van­guard and core of the movement–Swoboda [“Svo­bo­da”], Pravy Sek­tor and oth­er, less­er-known ele­ments allied with them.

These groups are fas­cist in nature, with a her­itage stretch­ing back to the Third Reich’s OUN/B allies, per­pet­u­at­ed in the post-World War II peri­od by ele­ments of CIA, MI6 BND and orga­ni­za­tions like the Anti-Bol­she­vik of Nations. All of these groups are ulti­mate­ly, behold­en to, and allied with the Under­ground Reich.

We have cov­ered this in pre­vi­ous posts–here, here, here and here. (We are pro­duc­ing pro­grams about the Ukrain­ian cri­sis at the present time.)

Two recent posts from the Inter­na­tion­al Busi­ness Times illus­trate and define what might be termed “the ideological/political bou­quet” of the oppo­si­tion forces that oust­ed Yanukovych (who, like most of the lead­ers who have come to pow­er in the for­mer Sovi­et republics and a pletho­ra of lead­ers else­whate, was man­i­fest­ly incom­pe­tent and cor­rupt.)

Writer Palosh Ghosh notes that Swoboda–the largest of these groups–has gen­er­at­ed con­sid­er­able grav­i­tas from young, edu­cat­ed Ukraini­ans who are dis­gust­ed with the mori­bund econ­o­my. His­tor­i­cal­ly, eco­nom­ic depri­va­tion has lent pop­u­lar sup­port to the ranks of fas­cist orga­ni­za­tions.

Swo­bo­da par­lia­men­tar­i­an Yuriy Mykhalchyshyn has quot­ed Third Reich lumi­nar­ies such as Joseph Goebbels, Gre­gor Strass­er and Ernst Rohm in his polit­i­cal speech­es, and the deputy chief of Swo­bo­da, Ihor Mirosh­ny­chenko, has termed Ukrain­ian-born actress Mila Kunis “a dirty Jew­ess.”


In an update, “Pter­rafractyl” informs us that the chief pros­e­cu­tor in the new inter­im Ukrain­ian gov­ern­ment is a mem­ber of Swo­bo­da.

The pop­u­lar chants of the Euro­maid­an demon­stra­tors are those of the OUN/B.

“Euro­maid­an: The Dark Shad­ows of the Far-Right  in Ukraine Protests” by Palosh Ghosh; Inter­na­tion­al Busi­ness Times; 2/25/2014.

EXCERPT: . . . .How­ev­er, despite its extrem­ist rhetoric, Svo­bo­da can­not be called a “fringe” par­ty – indeed, it cur­rent­ly occu­pies 36 seats in the 450-mem­ber Ukrain­ian par­lia­ment, grant­i­ng it sta­tus as the fourth-largest par­ty in the coun­try. Fur­ther, Svo­bo­da is linked to oth­er far-right groups across Europe through its mem­ber­ship in the Alliance of Euro­pean Nation­al Move­ments, which includes the British Nation­al Par­ty (BNP) of the Unit­ed King­dom and Job­bik, the neo-fas­cist, anti-Semit­ic and anti-Roma par­ty of Hun­gary. The leader of Svo­bo­da, Oleh Tyah­ny­bok, who has appeared at the Kiev protests, has a long his­to­ry of mak­ing inflam­ma­to­ry anti-Semit­ic state­ments, includ­ing the accu­sa­tion dur­ing a 2004 speech before par­lia­ment that Ukraine is con­trolled by a “Mus­covite-Jew­ish mafia.” [Swo­bo­da Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment Ihor] Mirosh­ny­chenko also called the Ukrain­ian-born Amer­i­can film actress Mila Kunis a “dirty Jew­ess.”

Tyah­ny­bok has also claimed that “orga­nized Jew­ry” dom­i­nate Ukrain­ian media and gov­ern­ment, have enriched them­selves through crim­i­nal activ­i­ties and plan to engi­neer a “geno­cide” upon the Chris­t­ian Ukrain­ian pop­u­la­tion. Anoth­er top Svo­bo­da mem­ber, Yuriy Mykhalchyshyn, a deputy in par­lia­ment, often quotes Nazi Pro­pa­gan­da Min­is­ter Joseph Goebbels, as well as oth­er Third Reich lumi­nar­ies like Ernst Rohm and Gre­gor Strass­er. . . .

. . . . Found­ed in 1991 as the Social-Nation­al Par­ty of Ukraine, Svo­bo­da has appar­ent­ly appealed to hun­dreds of thou­sands of Ukraini­ans tired of eco­nom­ic woes and ram­pant cor­rup­tion in gov­ern­ment. Reports also sug­gest that the par­ty has derived sig­nif­i­cant sup­port from the well edu­cat­ed and the young, who suf­fer from high unem­ploy­ment. . . . .

“Svo­bo­da: The Ris­ing Spec­tre of Neo-Nazism in the Ukraine” by Palosh Ghosh; The Inter­na­tion­al Busi­ness Times; 12/27/2013.

. . . . Ihor Mirosh­ny­chenko, the deputy chief of Svo­bo­da, wrote on his Face­book account: “[Kunis] is not Ukrain­ian, she is a Yid. She is proud of it, so [the] Star of David be with her.” . . . .

“Ukraine Cri­sis: Key Play­ers”; BBC; 2/27/2014.

After months of mass unrest in Ukraine, cul­mi­nat­ing in dead­ly vio­lence and the removal of the elect­ed Pres­i­dent, Vik­tor Yanukovych, we look at some of the key play­ers emerg­ing.

The mem­bers of the new gov­ern­ment have to be approved by par­lia­ment.

Olek­sander Turchynov, inter­im pres­i­dent

Pro­pelled to the top by the col­lapse of the Yanukovych admin­is­tra­tion, the new par­lia­men­tary speak­er and act­ing pres­i­dent is con­sid­ered the right-hand man of Yulia Tymoshenko, who was Mr Yanukovych’s arch-rival at the 2010 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion.

An impor­tant fig­ure in the 2004 Orange Rev­o­lu­tion, the 49-year-old briefly served as head of the domes­tic secu­rity agency, the SBU, then as a deputy prime min­is­ter.

While he may enjoy cred­i­bil­ity with some pro­test­ers — he was injured in the face by shrap­nel dur­ing the vio­lence in Kiev this win­ter — he appears to lack charis­ma and is not ulti­mately seen as a pres­i­den­tial can­di­date.


Oleh Makhnit­skyy, act­ing chief pros­e­cu­tor

The 43-year-old mem­ber of the far-right Svo­boda par­ty was lit­tle known on the nation­al polit­i­cal scene before his appoint­ment by par­lia­ment.

A lawyer from Lviv, he worked as an inves­ti­ga­tor with a local prosecutor’s office in the late 1990s before mov­ing into pol­i­tics.

“The Ukrain­ian Nation­al­ism at the Heart of ‘Euro­maid­an’ ” by Alec Luhn; The Nation; 1/21/2014.

EXCERPT: . . . . Svo­bo­da is the most vis­i­ble par­ty on the square, it has essen­tial­ly tak­en over Kiev City Hall as its base of oper­a­tions, and it has a large influ­ence in the pro­tes­tors’ secu­ri­ty forces.

It also has revived three slo­gans orig­i­nat­ing in the Ukrain­ian nation­al­ist move­ment of the 1930s [i.e. the OUN/B–D.E.] that have become the most pop­u­lar chants at Euro­maid­an. Almost all speak­ers on Inde­pen­dence Square—even box­er-turned-oppo­si­tion-leader Vitaly Klitschko, who has lived most­ly in Ger­many and has a US res­i­dence permit—start and end with the slo­gan, “Glo­ry to Ukraine!,” to which the crowd responds “To heroes glo­ry!” Two oth­er nation­al­ist call-and-response slo­gans often heard on the square are “Glo­ry to the nation! Death to ene­mies!” and “Ukraine above all!” . . .



One comment for “The Ideology and Electoral Gravitas of Swoboda (Ukrainian Heirs to the OUN/B)”

  1. With uniden­ti­fied pro-Russ­ian gun­men tak­ing con­trol of two air­ports and the gov­ern­ment in Kiev assert­ing Rus­sia was behind the action, Ukraine’s loom­ing civ­il war looks like it could soon involve for­eign forces. And they won’t all nec­es­sar­i­ly be Russ­ian:

    Dai­ly Beast
    Neo-Nazis Pour Into Kiev
    A stream of Euro­pean jihadists have trav­eled to Syr­ia to wage holy war. Now a group of Euro­pean neo-Nazis are trav­el­ing to Ukraine to save the white race

    By Michael Moyni­han

    In ear­ly Feb­ru­ary, Fredrik Hag­berg stood at the ros­trum in Kiev’s City Hall, offer­ing fra­ter­nal and com­rade­ly greet­ings from Swe­den to the sweaty, bruised, and exhaust­ed Ukrain­ian insur­rec­tion­ists scat­tered through­out. The place was fes­tooned with flags—some celtic cross­es, a stray Con­fed­er­ate ban­ner, a stan­dard for the polit­i­cal par­ty Svo­bo­da, whose mem­bers essen­tial­ly con­trolled the building—reflecting the dubi­ous pol­i­tics of its occu­piers.

    Rev­o­lu­tion­ary tourists, thrill seek­ers, and para­chute jour­nal­ists suf­fused Kiev. Sen. John McCain, actress Hay­den Panet­tiere, and French intel­lec­tu­al Bernard Hen­ri-Levy roused mas­sive crowds with paeans to free­dom and nation­al sov­er­eign­ty, while offer­ing moral sup­port to the oppo­si­tion forces led by for­mer box­ing cham­pi­on Vitaly Klitschko.

    But Hag­berg, a square-jawed and baby-faced mem­ber of the Swedish armed forces, had a dark­er mes­sage.

    “I stand before your forces of rev­o­lu­tion to tell you about what your future might be if you fail your glo­ri­ous endeav­our,” he said in flu­id-but-clipped Eng­lish. “I stand here as a Swede. How­ev­er where I come from is no longer Swe­den.” Hag­berg warned Ukraini­ans that a suc­cess­ful rev­o­lu­tion must chart a path that care­ful­ly avoid­ed the evils of abor­tion and eth­nic mon­gre­liza­tion, one that harsh­ly pun­ished wel­fare abuse and reject­ed the nor­mal­iza­tion of homo­sex­u­al­i­ty. “Offi­cials in Swe­den like to calls us the most mod­ern coun­try in the world. I say to you, broth­ers, this is what awaits you if you choose to fol­low our exam­ple. You now have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to choose and cre­ate your own future. Do not accept the trap of choos­ing either the West or Rus­sia.”

    It’s unclear who, if any­one, invit­ed him, but Hag­berg was speak­ing as a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Nordisk Ung­dom (Nordic Youth), a Swedish neo-Nazi group that cel­e­brates “a tra­di­tion­al ide­al of a bet­ter man, striv­ing for some­thing greater and more noble than his own per­son­al ben­e­fit; an ide­al­is­tic man who fights for Europe’s free­dom.” Vis­i­tors to the group’s Eng­lish-lan­guage web­site are met with with a Bar­bara Kruger-like adver­tise­ment beseech­ing vis­i­tors to “help us to help the rev­o­lu­tion! Sup­port a free Ukraine! Donate Now...” Because Hag­berg is try­ing to pro­voke his fel­low neo-Nazis into trav­el­ling to Kiev to help shape a new, fas­cist-friend­ly Ukraine.

    Amongst the fas­cists, ultra-nation­al­ists, and racists in Europe, there has been much grip­ing that the revolt in Ukraine has been over­tak­en, if not con­trolled from the out­set, by “CIA/ZOG [Zion­ist Occu­pied Government]/Soros-sponsored” forces. The Euroscep­ti­cism of the continent’s far-right move­ments has pro­duced a skep­ti­cism of the uprising’s much-dis­cussed Europhile main­stream.

    But Pro-Yanukovych forces and the for­mer president’s Krem­lin allies have heav­i­ly pro­mot­ed an alter­na­tive narrative—one that Hag­berg and his allies hap­pi­ly embrace—suggesting that the protest move­ment is in fact hon­ey­combed with dan­ger­ous neo-Nazis affil­i­at­ed with the extrem­ist Ukrain­ian polit­i­cal par­ties Svo­bo­da and Right Sec­tor. There­fore, West­ern sup­port­ers of the protests, like John Mccain, are agi­tat­ing on behalf of vio­lent Ukrain­ian fas­cism.

    It’s a mod­i­fied ver­sion of the Kremlin’s argu­ment against West­ern sup­port for Syr­i­an rebel groups, which it says has amount­ed to mate­r­i­al sup­port for al-Qae­da-spon­sered ter­ror­ism. And like with Syria—and the Span­ish Civ­il War before it—sympathetic Euro­pean extrem­ists are trav­el­ling to pro­vide sup­port to their ide­o­log­i­cal brethren.

    “We just got boots on the ground and are dis­cussing with Svo­bo­da rep­re­sen­ta­tives and oth­er nation­al­ists what we can assist with,” Mag­nus Söder­man, the neo-Nazi orga­niz­er of the Swedish Ukraine Vol­un­teers (Sven­s­ka Ukrainafriv­il­li­ga), told me. “Our mes­sage to them is that we will assist with what­ev­er; clear­ing the streets, secu­ri­ty, mak­ing food.”

    On the group’s web­site, stuffed with hack­neyed neo-Nazi pro­pa­gan­da, poten­tial vol­un­teers are told that “we do not orga­nize any para­mil­i­tary force because our involve­ment is of a civ­il nature, as aid work­ers. Of course, should vio­lence break out we will make use of our right of self-defense.” (The site advis­es recruits to “improve your phys­i­cal fit­ness” before trav­el­ling to Kiev.) Ukraine, the group says, is fac­ing an exis­ten­tial threat and “we must secure the exis­tence of our peo­ple and the future of our white chil­dren!”

    Accord­ing to the group’s new­ly con­sti­tut­ed Face­book page, a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Swedish Ukraine Vol­un­teers recent­ly “vis­it­ed the par­lia­ment and estab­lished ??impor­tant con­tacts” amongst local politi­cians, pre­sum­ably those affil­i­at­ed with ultra-nation­al­ist par­ties Svo­bo­da and Right Sec­tor. The idea of for­eign vol­un­teers is “a good ini­tia­tive,” said one mem­ber of a fas­cist mes­sage board in Swe­den, “and I give my full sup­port to Mikael Skillt and oth­er par­ty com­rades who are trav­el­ling down to help our broth­ers in the east.”

    Mikael Skillt is well-known in Swedish neo-Nazi cir­cles. A spokesman for the vig­i­lante group Stop the Pedophiles and a vet­er­an of var­i­ous now-defunct fas­cist orga­ni­za­tions, Skillt is cur­rent­ly affil­i­at­ed with the Par­ty of the Swedes (SvP), a neo-Nazi group found­ed by mem­bers of the less cam­era-friend­ly Nation­al Social­ist Front. Accord­ing to its web­site, SvP “has good con­tact with [Svo­bo­da] who were guests at our con­fer­ence Vision Europe just under a year ago.”

    When I con­tact­ed Skillt he was in Moscow, on his way to agi­tat­ing in Kiev. So why does Ukraine need a fas­cist inter­na­tion­al brigade? “We are scan­ning the needs of the Ukraini­ans, but we will be offer­ing [them] our help in what­ev­er they need,” he told me. “We have mem­bers with expe­ri­ence in most fields, rang­ing from mil­i­tary to truck dri­vers to jour­nal­ists.”

    When I asked if he had can­vassed the opin­ions of Russ­ian neo-Nazi groups while in Moscow, Skillt told me, with pre­dictable oblique­ness, that he had “heard some [Russ­ian] nation­al­ists who have spo­ken of a rev­o­lu­tion inspired by Ukraine.”

    So how large is the inter­na­tion­al brigade of ultra-nation­al­ists? A Euro­pean jour­nal­ist who fol­lows the move­ment of Euro­pean jihadists to Syria—and now fas­cists migrat­ing towards Kiev—told me that there was indeed scat­tered evi­dence that neo-Nazi groups out­side Swe­den were mak­ing pil­grim­ages to Ukraine. When I asked Mag­nus Söder­man if there was a net­work of oth­er Nazis on the ground, he told me that “com­rades from oth­er Euro­pean coun­tries are also prepar­ing to assist if it is need­ed.”


    Posted by Pterrafractyl | February 28, 2014, 2:20 pm

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