The following is a translation of an editorial on the widely-read, Russian-language blog ‘Colonel Cassad’, which is published by Boris Rozhin. The translation appears on a website dedicating to translating the original materials of ‘Colonel Cassad’.
It might make you hate. But we do not want hate. We want a reasoned understanding of the criminality of fascism and how it should be opposed. We must realize that these murders are the gestures of a bully, the great bully of fascism. There is only one way to quell a bully, and that is to thrash him… (с) Ernest Hemingway
Exactly one year ago, a civil war started in Ukraine. The people were perishing even before the shooting of people in Kiev on the 20th of February, but it was precisely the 20th of February http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/1418551.html (in Russian) which became a milestone, after which the events turned towards the track that is fatal for Ukraine. The coup, the disintegration of the country, and large-scale military action which followed the bloodbath [of Feb 20-21]finalized the “Ukrainian path towards Europe”. Actually, even before the fact of the coup that happened on the 21st of February, by the evening of the 20th of February it became clear http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/1419873.html (in Russian) that there are no “clever plans” and that there is a total catastrophe of the ruling regime of Yanukovich, which pulled the Ukraine to the bottom along with itself as it was going down.
As for me personally, despite all my skepticism then towards eloquent tales of “Yanukovich’s clever plan”, I didn’t think at first that the Ukrainian Gorbachevism will end with an actual civil war a la Yugoslavia. A complete understanding was achieved by me personally on February 16, when the fascists publicly beat up peaceful protesters in Kiev. Back then, I wrote http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/1410828.html (in Russian) about civil war against fascism, not imagining that in the early months this war would stop being just a figure of speech.
What can a citizen do when he is facing fascism in his own country? He may accept it and hope to survive the “time of troubles” in the hope that it won’t touch him. This is a naive layman illusion, which the rank-and-file Germans enjoyed until the moment when fascism brought into their cities not just the happy news from the fronts, the goods from the subjugated lands and the eastern slaves, but also the flow of bombs that destroyed their cities, killed women and children, and, in the end, brought about an utter collapse of the state and the dismemberment of Germany. So those who intend to sit it out are lulled into complacency – but as fascism spreads, it touches everyone.
In this respect, it is important to understand that convincing the fascists that they are wrong is a pointless and useless task. Naked force, which is used by fascism, must be counterbalanced by naked force – that is, semi-militarized units, which must be created by communist and anti-fascist organizations and also by those citizens who understand what is fascism and what it brings. These units are necessary because the security apparatus of the Ukrainian not-quite-state is unable to fulfill the elementary duties of suppressing fascism.
Naturally, the question of the legality of such actions arises because the officials use their one hand to support the fascists and create a maximally beneficial environment for them, and use their other hand to block any attempts to self-organize for fighting the threat of fascism. In this respect, it is important to understand that from the point of view of the existing government, the struggle against fascism is illegal. If you, seeing the failure of the current authorities that encourage fascism, try to create a structure for fighting against it and participate in it, then you are most likely crossing the line of the law. Such is the Ukrainian reality, unadorned.
This is a simple choice–to obey and to limit oneself to peaceful rallies, where the fascists can beat up civilians with impunity, or to follow the opponent’s example, acting on the principle “of turning a deaf ear”.
It is enough to observe how the fascists behave. If the prosecutor’s office forbids something, then they do it. If the judge prohibits their rallies, they rally. A minister ruled to disperse? They stay. Some of the militants are detained? They apply forceful pressure and the authorities let them go. All of these actions are illegal, but they work. Until the anti-fascists will understand that by remaining within the boundaries of the Ukrainian law they disarm themselves in the face of the fascists, the civilians will be beaten up hard, just like when they attacked the veterans of the Great Patriotic War in Lvov several years ago, giving the fascists the pretense to scoff on the subject of weakness and worthlessness of the anti-fascists, who are good only for rallies and for running away from sticks and kicks. And this is a weakness which only convinces them that they are right, that this is exactly the way for them to achieve their goals.
It is time to get rid of the illusions that your voice of reason will be heard in the twisted world of fascism. The chant of “let there be no war” doesn’t work either, because fascism is war, and there is no way to run away.
It must be plainly understood that no matter how the current crisis will end, and no matter who will become president in 2015 – Yanukovich, Tymoshenko, Yatsenyuk, or Klitschko – fascism itself, which showed its teeth during the Kiev winter of 2014, won’t go anywhere. It has already become a factor of the Ukrainian reality and sooner or later there will be a war to its destruction. And the sooner people will understand it, the lower will be the final price that will have to be paid in the end for the elimination of Ukrainian fascism.
In this respect, the civil war that started after the bloody events in Ukraine showed well that only in those places where fascism received an armed response, the fascist junta failed to secure its power. This once again shows what kind of language is understood by the fascism. Well, as for the use of exhortations and compromises with the fascists, we already clearly saw it over the last year in Ukraine, when life itself clearly showed the deficiency and the bloody consequences of the Ukrainian Tolstoyism and non-involvement. And even the mantra of “let there be no war”, behind which the commoners hid, didn’t work – those commoners who tried to avoid the war against fascism started to be simply driven into the war as cannon fodder of Ukrainian fascism.
The question of who is to blame in what happened by now is fairly trivial. Did the Yanukovich regime want blood? It would be better if it did, the pathological fear of Yanukovich of spilling blood on the streets turned into the flows of coffins from Donbass. This was just classic: the road to the Ukrainian hell is paved with good intentions.
Did Russia want blood? Well, considering the fact that it was precisely Russia which advised Yanukovich to refrain from the use of force http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pH13Kl9VIHM and to negotiate with the pro-American opposition, meanwhile giving credits to Yanukovich (after China and the EU refused him), it is hard to blame Russia that it wanted to bring down the Yanukovich regime, plunging the country into a civil war.
Did the European Union want blood? More of a no than of a yes. The cowardice of the European bosses, who were betting on Klitschko back then (just how laughable it sounds now) was clearly shown in the uncovered conversations by Nuland, where the attitude of the global hegemony towards Europe, which is afraid of “making hard decisions”, could be seen quite well. Europe supported the coup, but tried to do so in a such way that would both screw Russia and not screw itself, but this didn’t happen. And the current efforts by Merkel to stop the events is something of a payback for the political blindness of February-March 2014, when Europe pulled itself into a war that was arranged by the USA and no longer knows how to get out of it.
Did the USA want blood? Yes, they did. It was precisely the USA which supported the most extremist groups of the Ukrainian opposition and it was precisely the USA who bet on people like Yatsenyuk and the mundane fascist Tyagnybok, who became one of the rams that broke the Yanukovich regime. It was precisely their agent Nalivaychenko who supervised the work by Yarosh and the “Right Sector”, which made the confrontation in Kiev bloody. And the USA have no regrets of this, quite the opposite, they are proud that they helped the transition of power in Ukraine http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/2025917.html (in Russian) even though they know its consequences.
Did the Ukrainian opposition want blood? Considering the fact that the snipers were shooting from the “opposition side” and that the most benefits of the bloody massacre in Ukraine went to the forces that formed the fascist junta, the answer to the question of “Who benefits?” is quite clear. Yanukovich wasn’t interested in blood and no matter how much he was besieged by Zakharchenko (n.b. Zakharchenko the minister of internal affairs, not Zakharchenko the president of the DPR, for goodness sake) and Pshonka, the plans to arrange a “Kiev Tiananmen” remained just that – plans (actually, for Ukraine it is more likely that the implementation of these plans would end up being a benefit compared to what happened in the end). But this desire to avoid the bloodletting was one-sided. The murders in Kiev, the shooting of the buses with “titushkys” near Korsun and the subsequent bloody events that led to Odessa and Mariupol showed well how the Tolstoyism is powerless against fascism, for which a massacre is an instrument for achieving the goal at any price, whereby it is possible to kill both friends and enemies in order to achieve the necessary result.
Do the junta bosses recognize their responsibility for the bloodbath into which they dipped Ukraine? Voluntarily – never. They’ll blame Yanukovich, the Party of Regions, the communists, the residents of Sevastopol, the “Berkut” riot police, “titushky”, Russia, Putin, “the polite people”, Strelkov, the militiamen, and many others, but never themselves and their owners, who helped “the transition of power”.
On the anniversary of a coup, which followed the massacre in Kiev, these people will play dumb, they will sing chants to the “heavenly hundred”, they will curse “enemies” who impede the “European future”, hypocritically turning a blind eye to what they turned Ukraine into. Ukraine was never a prosperous country. It was ruled by a semi-bandit regime of the “regionals”, which was absolutely corrupt and hardly compatible with the ideas of development and progress. This was a regime of parasitism on the remains of the Soviet legacy and of squeezing the revenues in the interests of a narrow group of people. But who would expect that in just a year this crappy regime (for which people mostly voted on the principle “these bastards are better than those bastards”), will be seen as “not so bad”, in the background of those bloody scumbags who went into power with the slogans of fighting against the “criminal regime of Yanukovich”. Murderers replaced thieves and corrupt officials, and this difference became clear to many residents of Ukraine quite quickly. But, after missing the moment when the murderers could be prevented from seizing power, now they are forced to live in the country of “victorious Euromaidan”, which is densely smeared with blood.
The objective desire for change in Ukraine was cynically used by the USA and the bosses of the “Euromaidan”. In the end, the people of Ukraine were put on a path where there is no positive future anymore, just like the Ukraine itself has no such future. The hopes and expectations of the people were turned into an instrument of the civil war in Ukraine and of the war against Russia. The Ukrainian split, which existed before, this time passed not just through the electoral, political, and socio-cultural preferences. The split went through the families, blood ties, and friendship relationships, when the most dreadful features of civil wars emerged, when brothers ended up being on the opposite sides. Ukraine will suffer from the consequences of this for decades, even after the current war will end, one way or another.
Original article: http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/2054469.html (in Russian)
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