In Background, Ukraine

The New Ukraine

Three part series by Dr. Inna Rogatchi, published in Arutz Sheva (Israel National News).  Weblinks here, full texts below.

Children are given military training by extremists of the Azov Battalion in Ukraine (vk.com tabir.azovec)

Children are given military training by extremists of the Azov Battalion in Ukraine (vk.com tabir.azovec)

Part one:  Old hate in the new Ukraine: Neo-Nazification in progress, Aug. 27, 2015
Part twoWhat about those Jews? Ukrainian neo-Nazism and the culture offensive, Aug 28
Part three: Ukrainian neo-Nazism: The European Parliament and summer camps, Aug 29


Part one: Old hate in the new Ukraine: Neo-Nazification in progress

Part one of a three-part series, by Dr. Inna Rogatchi, published in Arutz Sheva (Israel National News), August 27, 2015

Heroization of villains

To mark the second anniversary of the events that mark what the current Ukraine considers its new existence, the country’s officials are hurrying up the process of massive “name-lifting” of the region. Many Ukrainian cities and a massive number of streets all over the country are to be renamed by November 21st, 2015.

To complete the task, a special re-naming commission has been set up in each municipality of the country. The commissions have drafted their proposals for re-naming. To give the impression that the process is democratic in character, the proposals are announced on the sites of some, not all, municipalities, with the idea that people could read and react to those proposals. And they do.

Children are receiving military instruction in today's ultra-nationalist Ukraine, including from extremist militias (AP photo)

Children are receiving military instruction in today’s ultra-nationalist Ukraine, including from extremist militias (AP photo)

People from Ukraine are telling us that they are terrified. “We are stunned. This is not the process of de-communisation. The recent law on de-communisation prescribed changing only the Soviet Communist names, but what’s going on here is the process of total and forceful Ukrainisation, in fact. Instead of the expected 60 streets to be renamed here (in the big city of Dnepropetrovsk), they are willing to re-name 350 of them. The situation in Kiev, Kharkov and Odessa, and the other big cities with a long history is the same.”

This is what we are being told by extremely worried citizens of Ukraine. Loyal citizens, just very frightened ones. We are also told that “people here are very weary and all of them worry. People are afraid. They are depressed. People are scared on a level which they did not reach even when the conflict was in its hottest stage. Because at that stage there was a hope that it all will settle down and life will return to some sort of normality. But now people have realized that this was an illusion”.

The Ukrainian officials in charge of Operation Renaming openly and serenely are declaring that “it is our only chance to get rid of everything Russian now, not just ideologically, but culturally, too, so we are very committed to implement the system of new names – and new values – into our society at this very moment” – to quote Sergey Svetlichny, the chair of the working panel of the re-naming commission in Dnepropetrovsk. His interview has been published by several Ukrainian media. He calls himself an academic.

According to the plan accepted by municipalities and publicised re-naming plans, all the main streets and avenues in the downtowns of all major cities of the Eastern and Southern Ukraine are to get the names of Stepan Bandera, Roman Shuhevich, Eugen Konovaletz, thus glorifying the vicious murderers and Nazi collaborators whose criminal records are horrifying and are documented in detail.

On the record: in order to call these facts “Russian, Israeli or Polish, for that matter, propaganda”, one must be a certified Holocaust – and the crimes against humanity – denier.

Additionally,the proposal includes renaming big and important central streets and avenues after such vicious anti-Semitic bandits as Atamans (Cossack village leaders) Mahno and Petliura who commanded pogrom gangs in Ukraine after the Bolshevik revolution; and in whose name the Bandera militia conducted the second Lvov pogrom in July 1941 known as “Petliura Days”. These gangs were notorious for their cruelty in southern and eastern Ukraine in the 1920s murdering, robbing and raping thousands of people there and setting a vivid model for the Ukrainian ‘heroes’ massacres carried on in the 1940s .

Many Jewish families in those vast regions of Ukraine still remember both of those pogroms in their chilling details. Now they are supposed to live while being enlightened by the names of the criminals at their home or office addresses. It makes for nice walks through the city, too. All of the Ukrainian cities, to be noted.

To make it all even nicer, many central streets are to be renamed in honour of every possible Ukrainian hetman (Cossack army heads), the leaders of the gangs of butchers, from the XV century onward. On their hands are oceans of Jewish and the other non-Ukrainian blood, throughout all Ukrainian history.

Upon seeing the information on the current self-re-make of Ukraine, one cannot stop to think of a similar process meticulously described in the book first published in 1944 in the USA and that became an instant world best-seller. The book’s title was The Story of the Secret State, and its author was Jan Karski, a Polish hero who brought to the West the first factual account of the Holocaust (which no decision-maker was interested in at the time). In his book, Karski described how his beloved Poznan, the city of the most sophisticated Polish culture, had been Germanised by the Nazis over a few weeks in the Autumn 1939, and what an unbearable void it had become for thousands of people there. Jan Karski was a first-hand witness of the process. Now, 75 years and three generations later, we all are witnessing the beginning of something very similar in Ukraine.

“How we are supposed to live on the Bandera, Shuchevich, Mahno, Petliura and all those bloody hetmans’ streets? Our families were victims of those criminals. People here remember it all very well. This is insane,” – people from Ukraine are telling us, in a state of panic.

It is also insulting, not just insensitive and frightening. What is going on there is an abrasive push of the new Ukraine’s ideology which could find no one better than the infamous butchers of all Ukranian epochs, so as to infuse their citizen with a new-found patriotism. Patriotism about what? Torturing skills? the degree of hatred? the limitless cruelty?

From Bandera Street to Hitlerstrasse

The world community seems to be bothered little by this outrage. There clearly is a wave of the growing concern in the leading Western media, but all is still quite serene, at least, publicly, on the international diplomacy and political front. Well, if this is so acceptable and not worth noticing, it would be logical to expect a hypothetical re-naming the streets all over the world.

We can start with Hitlerstrasse in Berlin, Kaltenbrunnergasse in Vienna, Mengele platz in Munich, and so on. They all were fighting for the glory of the Reich, their fatherland, were they not? Additionally, they were the ones to whom Bandera, Shuchevich and their criminals gave an oath, who recruited and bred them from the early and mid -1920s, who paid and formed their divisions, who taught and trained them. If their pupils, agents and paid workers have become heroes in the country which is supported by Europe so enthusiastically, it is logically acceptable for their masters to be proclaimed super-heroes.

The ineptness of the world’s leaders with regard to the flourishing Ukranian neo-Nazification does demand answers from senior decision-makers, the blind and unequivocal supporters of the country that lost 5.3 million of its citizens in the Second World War, but decided to promote and support, in its new appearance, a blatant neo-Nazification .

Back in early 2014, when the Ukrainian conflict started to unfold, replete with neo-Nazi parties and organizations, 27 of them registered and operating in Ukraine at the time (now there are many more), we discussed this looming problem with many senior US and European officials. Not one of them dismissed my concern; everyone did confirm that the problem is acute and worrisome. “Yes, we know about it , it is existing and worrisome“, but – “We’ll deal with it a bit later”; “ we can assure you that we are keeping our fingers on the pulse of it”, “it is going to be under control” – that is what I was hearing from all of them in unison . Well, is it?

Has the case of Hungary not been alarming enough, where the same problem of the rising neo-Nazi movement was left unnoticed to become a really acute phenomenon for all of Europe some 15 years later when the movement matured in a remarkable – and unchallenged – way, until it is now too late? And would not it be a bit sobering to remember that population-wise, Ukraine is four and a half times bigger than Hungary?

The young generation which will be born and grow up on Bandera street, will read and see what is on Ukrainian TV and in their text-books and will be brought up as natural fans of the Ukrainian ‘heroes’, vicious murderers and zoological racists. This generation will also have a wide array of current, very active and highly profiled neo-Nazis, to help their illustrious bringing up. So, we should not be surprised at the qualities of that society within the span of a decade.

Apart from the eastern, southern and central parts of Ukraine which have become subject to Operation Renaming, it is worth mentioning that the process of thorough typonimical and historical glorification of vicious murderers was successfully completed in western Ukraine decades ago. All cities of the six regions ( out of 24 in Ukraine) enjoy their Bandera, Shuhevich & Co street names since the mid 1990s, plus numerous very pompous memorials to vicious Nazi collaborators whom the Ukrainian new leadership and parliament have re-qualified into ‘fighters for the Ukraine’s freedom and independence’, also numerous museums of all sizes establishing the legacy of racial hatred and unspeakable crimes as a noble national tradition.

Many Western publications, including special monographs, such as Erased by Omer Bartov, documented that shocking reality in detail. It is a very uneasy reading. But the point is that the phenomenon has been registered and efforts were made to bring the subject into the limelight of public discussion as long, as 8 years ago, from 2007 onward. To no avail.

I remember very vividly, just a few years ago, at the beginning of the Ukrainian conflict, our Ukrainian – Ukrainian by nationality and origin – friends were terrified while saying to us:”Have you seen those giant memorials to Bandera in Lvov, and the other places of the Western Ukraine? What a horror! How on the earth is it possible? Why did you in Europe overlook it in silence and negligence? “ Now the same people are looking at us with their sad eyes, living in the still nightmare-like for them reality and trying to grasp the meaning of the continuing silence of the world, with Europe so close, while the wave of the glorification of Nazism is sweeping all over Ukraine. Those people have no questions any longer. And this is alarming, indeed.

In the process of their own contribution into the matter of the national pride today, in all those cities of the Western Ukraine, the streets already named after Bandera, Shuhevich and Co in mid-1990s, now will be re-named – and become the streets of the Hero Stepan Bandera, National Hero Roman Shuhevitch, Hero of Ukraine Eugen Konovaletz, etc. There is no limit to the striving for perfection.

And we have not even mentioned the Jews yet. (Part II to be posted tomorrow)


Part two: What about those Jews? Ukrainian neo-Nazism and the culture offensive

Part two of a three-part series, by Dr. Inna Rogatchi, published in Arutz Sheva (Israel National News), August 28, 2015

Ukraine has its own way of dealing with Jewish victims of the Nazis and current writers and scientists who do not think the right way.

To refresh our memory, those fighters and ‘heroes’ having streets in Ukraine renamed to honor them are responsible for the documented 88,700 (estimated 130,800) lives of Poles during the nightmare of the Volyn massacre carried on in 4,144 places in 1943; for thousands of victims of the two horrific Lvov pogroms in July 1941, with, respectively, four and two thousand people murdered in a day; for many unspeakable atrocities during the Second World War. Dry and unemotional military data documented their ‘exploits’ is contained in many leading military and historical archives – such as in the Imperial War Museum (London, UK), the State Archive of the Military History of the USA, the Australian State Commission on Military Crimes during the Second World War, the archive of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, Yad Vashem, the Federal Archive of the military history of Germany, the State Institute of Holocaust Studies of Austria, etc.

Just one quote of very many available ones: “UNA UNSO ( the Bandera and Shuchevich organisation) have been responsible for lives of 850,000 Jews, 220,000 Poles, 500,000 Ukrainian and Belorussians (civil population), 400,000 Soviet prisoners of war.”

Back in mid-1990s, Simon Wiesenthal has told to me personally and on the record that from his vast experience, and his documented knowledge, “those Ukrainians who were the Nazi collaborators, were worse that the Nazi themselves in their non-stop bloody crimes, and the pleasure that they were getting from it.”

The Bandera organization’s Torture Manual, re-published in Poland in 1989, is an impossible read. It lists 180 kinds of tortures of the most imaginative kind. Many Polish academics were and still are working on the subject. In the publications of the Historic Institute of the Jagellon University, the list of the tortures, – applied to civil populations, including children, the elderly and women – reaches 362. Highly recommended reading, especially if somebody is perplexed about the definitions of the terms ‘heroes’ or ‘freedom fighters’.

In many Polish cities throughout the country there are numerous, over a dozen, tragic memorials to the victims of the Volyn massacre and the other crimes of the OUN UNA , some of those memorials are made with the chilling images of the photographs of the actual massacre. The day of 11th July is commemorated in Poland as the Day of the Victims of the Volyn Massacre.

For many years, previous Polish governments and the country’s Senate (the Upper House of the Polish parliament) tried to make Ukraine recognize the crimes against humanity carried on by the Bandera and Shuchevich butchers as a genocide on the international legal level, with the latest of these attempts accepted by the Polish Seim, the parliament, in the Spring of 2013, a few months before the start of the Ukrainian conflict. The Polish leadership is trying to address the issue even now, despite their strong general support of the new Ukraine. And one can be absolutely sure that the Polish people would ever forget the massacre against them committed by the Ukrainian nationalists back in 1940s. There are valid reasons for qualifying the crimes as the crimes against humanity. They have no statute of limitations.

There is no statute of limitations on yet another crime of the Ukrainian Nationalists – the Khatyn massacre in Byelorussia when an entire village was set ablaze by the 118th Nazi Schutzmannschaft battalion, formed in 1942 in Kiev and consisting of Ukrainian militants, with people burned alive there. The list of the crimes of the new Ukraine ‘heroes’ is precise – and it is a very long one.

Father Patrick Desbois, known to the world as ‘The Priest on the Holocaust Mission’, has found and described methodically the endless crimes against the Jewish population in Ukraine, with the crimes’ perpetrators, the OUN UNA units. He does it today with doubled energy, justly outraged at the Nazism glorification in Ukraine.

Next year, there will be the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Babi Yar massacre in Ukraine. President Poroshenko has recently signed an order to create all kinds of committees to “prepare their proposals for the commemoration”. According to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum Archive in Washington, DC, “among 1500 policemen carrying on the massacre, 300 were German members of the SS, and 1200 members of the Ukrainian OUN UNSO forces (those Bandera ‘heroes’)”. The statistic of Babi Yar is well known: 350 000 people were murdered there from 1941 through 1943,160, 000 of them Jewish, 50 000 of them children. Any further questions on the Bandera fighters’ heroism?

But as it is become known, in a truly inventive approach to history, the Ukrainian authorities and the people devoted to the operation Our Heroes in Ukraine, are preparing to commemorate also the OUN own victims of Baby Yar. It is known that 14 of them had been also killed by their comrades in Baby Yar, following the orders of the Germans who were not quite happy with the faction of the OUN that tried to be not quite subordinated to the Germans.

The ideological father of the new laws in Ukraine reworking all this outrage is the one of the new Ukrainian MPs, Jury Shuchevich, the 82 –year son of Roman Shuchevich, the one of the leaders of the infamous the SS Nachtigail battalion. SS Captain Roman Shuchevich was awarded the Nazi Iron Cross for his ‘exploits’ during the Second World War in Ukraine and was an Abver agent from 1926. The fact that the son of the political leader of the SS Nachtigail battalion and the bearer of the Nazi Iron Cross is the most respected – according to the Ukrainian authorities – member of their parliament is telling all by itself. 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 is ridiculous to see how a personal vendetta has driven the policy of a country with a population of 45 million.

Recognised 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 is 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 do not like to talk about it.”

This year the whole world commemorates the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. Were 70 years not enough time to ‘examine’ those ‘complicated’ questions in full detail? And how about this completely shameless, cynical and hateful statement that mocks the memory of victims of his father’s ‘exploits to the core? In today’s Ukraine, Shuhevich and the like do this routinely. In Germany and many other countries, he would be behind bars for his racist incitements. In the current Ukraine, he is a hero, like his criminal father. This legacy is tarnishing the reputation of Ukraine in global proportions.

The cultural offensive

The articles in both the Ukrainian and English version of Wikipedia have been altered drastically since the beginning of 2014, and today, one will find only positive things on the new ‘heroes’ known to the rest of the world as the biggest haters and worst criminals in modern history.

With unprecedented zealotry in implementation of what they believe is their new cultural and ideological identity, Ukrainian authorities did not find a better solution than ‘black lists’. They are enthusiastically blacklisting everything and everyone now – people, books, films. Those lists are telling, too.

The new Ukrainian authorities have 554 people on their black list of cultural personalities, mostly Russians, but also Steven Segal and Gerard Depardieu, and even the American boxer Roy Joyce Jr. who opted to move to Russia. Blacklisted writers, artists, actors and singers are officially declared by new Ukraine as ‘imposing a threat to its national security’. The Ukrainian authorities do know how to amuse effortlessly, it seems. Many of those very dangerous people are in their 60s, 70s and 80s; they had been the most prolific culture figures for millions of viewers and listeners for decades.

The films with all those enemies of Ukraine, including Segal and Depardieu, are banned too, of course. The French star laughed at the ban and thanked the Ukrainian authorities for what in his view is an honour.

In comparison, the white list of those whom they listed as their friends contains 34 names. Some of them, like the famous Russian actor and poet of Jewish origin Valentin Gaft, has declared that he had been white listed without his knowledge and is officially asking the Ukrainian authorities to black-list him, please. Another, the cult Soviet and Russian satirist writer Mikhail Zhvanezki, also of Jewish origin, has stated that “he is stunned by the decision, and does not quite know how to treat it, to cry or to laugh.”

The new Ukrainian authorities’ attacks on literature and cinema are unprecedented for the beginning of the XXI century. In June 2015, the Ukrainian State Cinema committee proudly reported that “while they banned 161 films in previous months, by now the figure is 384”. The ban has been carried out following the special law passed by the Ukrainian parliament in February 2015, and followed by another special decree of the president in June 2015. The law has banned for good the films produced by Russia from 1991 onward and having anything to do with police, army, special forces, etc. , including practically all films on the Second World War, on the First World War, and many historical ones. The presidential decree has banned all Russian film production from 2014 onward, including cartoons.

They are banning books and banning writers en masse and they are banning the film versions of their own Gogol – who wrote in Russian and escaped from his place of birth first to St Petersburg and then to Italy, and their own Bulgakov for ‘unfavourable depiction’ of Ukrainians.

The world is stunned. Reporters Without Borders has issued an official statement in this regard: “Banning of any media, films or books cannot be tolerated and shall not be practiced. This is a direct and very serious violation of the freedom of speech. We do regard the introduction of black lists and culture bans by the Ukrainian authorities as completely wrong”. Johann Bier, the director of the Eastern Europe and Middle Asia Department of Reporters Without Borders has also clarified that the only exception which would justify such ban is a propaganda of terror – which had not been the case in the Ukrainian ban.

Mr Bier has also emphasised that “every case of a particular ban is due to be implemented only after an at least three-level international inspection, and strictly on the basis of the international law. It is obvious that the Ukrainian authorities did not conduct their bans in accordance with the international requirements and practice for that.”

The new methods of punitive patriotism appear daily. Recently, the authorities in Kiev decided to strip the scientists who in their opinion are disloyal, or not loyal enough, of their scientific credentials – independently of when and in which country those scientists defended their dissertations and received their doctorates. Yet another punitive committee has proudly reported that they “did strip 12 scientists of their doctorates, and we will continue to apply this measure to entire scientific community here vigorously.” It is amazing to observe such revival of medieval inquisitional practices in Ukraine.

What they are conducting is a cultural offensive. Did anyone in the current Ukrainian leadership ever hear of Western democratic values? Tolerance, humanity, etc? Most of them were educated in decent universities, after all, albeit Soviet ones, and some of them have had some international experience, too. Welcome to the new Ukraine.


Part three: Ukrainian neo-Nazism: The European Parliament and summer camps

Part three of a three-part series by Dr. Inna Rogatchi, published in Arutz Sheva (Israel National News), August 29, 2015

Shades of the 1930’s, no change

The exercise of the Ukrainian culture offensive (see part II of this series) is pathetic and amusing, but their planned and currently implemented heroization of criminals is no reason for a laugh.

And yet, the world has swallowed the simply unthinkable decision of the Ukrainian parliament back in April 2015 that recognized all those criminals as ‘fighters for the Ukrainian independence”, along with all the financial and legal consequences of the decision.

Maybe, it would be worthy to recall the existing resolution of the European Parliament voted for back in 2010. Resolution RC-B7-0116/2010 is called Situation in Ukraine and passed on February 25th, 2010. It states the following:

European Parliament 20. – Deeply deplores the decision by the outgoing President of Ukraine, Viktor Yushchenko, posthumously to award Stepan Bandera, a leader of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) which collaborated with Nazi Germany, the title of ‘National Hero of Ukraine’; hopes, in this regard, that the new Ukrainian leadership will reconsider such decisions and will maintain its commitment to European values;

The resolution instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Member States, the Government and Parliament of Ukraine and the Parliamentary Assemblies of the Council of Europe, the OSCE and NATO”.

As far as the public knows, this resolution has not been annulled.

But the current European Parliament is full of surprises. The Czech MEP Jan Stetina has invited Andrei Biletsky, the leader of the infamous neo-Nazi  Ukranian battalion Azov, to a session‘to speak to the members of the European Parliament’. As the Czech media are boiling over this travesty, the self-contented former journalist is brushing off the fact of the Nazi character of the Azov as ‘Russian propaganda’. Maybe, he never heard of the international coverage of the Azov – including all the American press – that has prompted the US Congress to amend their aid to Ukraine specifying and emphasising that Azov and the other several neo-Nazi battalions and organizations are to be excluded from receiving the US taxpayers’ money.

But he definitely knows that his friend, the devoted self-declared Nazi  Biletsky, proudly calls himself the White Fuhrer and demands to be called by this self-imposed title. Journalist Stetina does not need to have a look at the very clear photo and film materials existing on Azov. He has been visiting his neo-Nazi friends frequently, and has seen all their insignia, their manuals, and everything else in full detail.

Perhaps this aging MEP and journalist who did not become as famous as he dreamt of being, has to find another way to make headlines, which he certainly did in the Czech Republic. He has made his choice – to promote the leader of the neo-Nazi militant unit to the European Parliament and to give him the floor there. This is a shameful and despicable choice which has to be and will be confronted.  MEP Stetina is contributing to  neo-Nazi propaganda which is forbidden by European laws.

Stetina lost his job as a journalist back in 1968, as many honest people in Czechoslovakia did, including the late president Vaclav Havel; he has been sanctioned, wrongly, by the Kremlin today, as have been many of his colleagues at the European Parliament. But does that justify propagating Ukrainian neo-Nazism in the European Parliament? Vaclav Havel would know what to say to his disgusting compatriot. Havel never lost his dignity and humanism. Stetina probably never had it.

There is much truth in the sentence that “the people are worthy of the government which they have voted for”, the same could be said about the countries which are worthy of the heroes they have recognized. The world, however, sits idly by when a 45-million country in the centre of Europe is rapidly galloping towards complete contempt of history and human life in the open neo-Nazification campaign.

Did we lose our conscience collectively, to allow such open neo-Nazification to swamp such big country in the centre of Europe? If this is acceptable for the country which lost over 5 million of its citizens during the Second World War, with so many of them killed by the Nazi collaborators whom they have proclaimed as their new icons today?

Neo-Nazification in Progress

In the summer 2015, German television broadcast a stunning documentary on the children’s summer camps in today’s Ukraine. Everybody is welcome to have a look at small Ukrainian children’s smiles while performing Nazi salutes en masse, their jolly marches and enthusiastic screams of the Bandera slogans which have become the official slogans of today’s Ukraine.

Several governmental bodies and specially created committees haVE been preparing for the new school year in Ukraine. Recently, the education minister proudly announced that ‘in the new school year, a new concept of the patriotic education will be implemented in the country”. This new concept is mandatory and it includes courses for children such as The Course for the Young Patriot for children from 9 years of age on;  the “I am a Young Patriot” program, the Theory of Race course for older students. Simultaneously, students in the universities and already graduated teachers will be taught the requirements of this new national concept of patriotic education. The minister said that “this all is only beginning.”

This promising beginning, is in fact, fulfilment of two major recent decisions of the Ukrainian government: in June 2015, the Ukrainian president signed a decree prescribing establishing a special working panel, and implementation of the Strategy of National-Patriotic Education in the country until 2020.

In July 2015, the Ukrainian government established yet another commission on national patriotic education. It was stated by the Ukrainian authorities, that among the projects conducted within the national patriotic governmental strategy, there are such events as producing a film on the Ukrainian Galician Army, and the annual ceremonies in honour of Bandera on his  birthday. By presidential decree, the day of the establishment of the UNA-OUN has become a new national holiday in Ukraine, a very important one for them, Ukrainian Army Day.

In January 2015, the world had already seen Ross Kemps very graphic documentary on the neo-Nazi battalions in Ukraine, shown by SKY on its satellite channels world-wide. One of the many reviews on the documentary stated: “There appears to be a neo-Nazi ultimatum in Ukraine today”.

Later on in the year, in May 2015,  the German WDR  documentary Brothers did show in detail not only the neo-Nazi character, ideology and agenda of those who call themselves Ukrainian nationalists, but also their close working links to the organized crime syndicates and ISIS. The film is available at the WDR archive.

More recently, in summer 2015, the fresh Polish documentary “Nazis in the Trenches” produced and broadcast by TVP also provided first-hand insight into the world of the modern Ukrainian neo-Nazis, who are very proud of themselves and love to be in the limelight.  To the questions of the Polish correspondents on their attitude towards the Ukrainian nationalist crimes against the Poles, a young militant , with a huge Nazi tattoo on his arm, smiles serenely: “Well, such were the times. We had to fight for our cause”.

The message seems to be starting to come through – from the spring of 2015 onward, the leading and most reputable Western media – such The New York Times, The Financial Times, Der Spiegel , Corriera della Serra, Stampa , La Reppublica, Newsweek, Time, the Sunday Times, and the Daily Telegraph – all  had a stream of articles specifically devoted to the theme of the rapid neo-Nazification of Ukraine, and its dangerous implications. But so far, many of these publications are lacking the simplest and most essential thing that must be articulated: all this is completely unacceptable. The world shall not tolerate it. Period.

In August 2015, many genuinely shocked British media, including The Guardian and Daily Mail, published a story furnished with photographs, from yet another Ukrainian neo-Nazi summer camp for children, set up by the infamous Azov battalion near Kiev. The children accepted to the camp are aged six and upward.  Are the European Union officials also shocked, in some way, as the British media are, and are they going to do something about this progressing neo-Nazification of Ukraine?

In August 2015, the official statement by the Ukrainian Security Service announced that part of the neo-Nazi Pravy Sector (Right Sector), a viciously anti-Semitic conglomerate of violent and armed men, now will become a special unit within the Ukrainian Security Service. Yet before that, Dmitry Jarosh, the notorious leader of the Right Sector, was politely invited to become an adviser to the Minister of Defence of Ukraine. The people who are undertaking such steps, one after another, seem not to have read heir history text-book back in elementary school. Otherwise, they would see immediately the outrageous repetition of the actions of Hitler and his circle with regard to the Ernst Röhm’s Storming Detachments in Germany in 1933-1934. The result is known all too well to all of mankind.

And while having fun watching Ukrainian children in the T-shirts of the Azovetz and the other neo-Nazi camps in the current Ukraine, what can one note as their logo? The SS Das Reich Division emblem.

Welcome to the new Ukraine.

Biographical note by Arutz Sheva: Dr Inna Rogatchi is a writer, scholar and filmmaker. Her forthcoming book is ‘Dark Stars, Wise Hearts: Personal Reflections on the Holocaust in Modern Times’. Her film ‘The Lessons of Survival’ is due to be screened at the Special Film Commemorative Series in honour of Simon Wiesenthal on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of his passing in October 2015 in Israel. More about Rogatchi Films here: www.rogatchifilms.org.

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