Voices from Russia

Saturday, 2 June 2018

The Burning of Pirčiupiai… Lest We Forget What Rightwing Racism Leads To

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On 3 June 1944, the fascist occupiers burned the village of Pirčiupiai in Lithuania, killing 119 people, burning them alive. Amongst the victims were 5 elderly persons over 65, 1 pregnant woman, 49 children under 15 years of age, 14 children under 5 years of age, and 4 nursing infants.

In 1960, the young Lithuanian sculptor Gediminas Jokūbonis created a memorial at the site of the tragedy, including the statue “Mother”, with a wall with decorated reliefs carved with names of the dead. The central monument portrays a tense image of a mother, the anger and sorrow of the old Lithuanian peasants, as well as severe generalised images, harmonising the architecture and memorial space with the surrounding countryside. In 1963, Jokūbonis received a Lenin Prize for creating the memorial. A Memorial Museum is also in Pirčiupiai.

In 1981, the Lithuanian cinema studio LKS filmed the movie Fakt (Fact) directed by Steponas Almantas Grikevičius, telling the story of the destruction of the village by the fascists. It won the main prize at the 14th all-Union Film Festival in Vilnius and represented the Soviet film industry in the competition at the Cannes International Film Festival, which it won the award for Best Supporting Female Role for actress E Ya Solovey.

2 June 2018

СССР. Прекрасная страна, в которой мы жили

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Ukrainian Jewish Committee Warns Kiev About Glorifying World War II Murderers of Jews

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On Friday, Eduard Dolinsky, Director of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee, told golos.ua:

The veneration of World War II-era Nazi groups and surging anti-Semitism in the Ukraine will inevitably affect relations with Israel. Currently, both countries enjoy a good relationship. However, the Ukraine’s glorification of the murderers of the Jewish population will eventually come back to haunt Kiev in its relations with Israel. This’ll happen shortly. This’ll depend on how the Ukraine acts. For example, Poland, as you know, banned entry for (the director of the Institute of National Memory) Vyatrovich as well as some of his allies and nationalists. Israel may also take similar measures. Besides, ultra-right sentiment and extremist groups will grow in the Ukraine if the government remains idle. The whole world is witnessing mounting rightwing extremist sentiment and stepped-up activity by radical groups in social life. If they take no action to counter this, this’ll build up day by day. In addition, their numbers would increase, eventually making the fight against them more difficult.

According to the Israeli Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, the number of anti-Semitic incidents doubled in the Ukraine in 2017 year-on-year, which comes against the backdrop of a glorification of nationalist leaders responsible for the murders and expulsion of Jews during World War II. It noted:

For a second successive year, the Ukraine saw the biggest number of anti-Semitic incidents among the former Soviet Union republics. There was anti-Semitic propaganda in politics, vandalism targeting Jewish cemeteries, buildings, and social centres, as well as monuments to Holocaust victims. However, they don’t take any effective action against vandals, with anti-Semitic incidents qualified as just hooliganism and not as hate crimes.

In May 2015, Ukrainian President P A Poroshenko signed a law glorifying the OUN (Ukrainian nationalists) and the UPA (Ukrainian Insurgent Army), a terrorist group outlawed in Russia, labelling their activity as a struggle for the country’s independence. Statues to nationalist Nazi collaborators S A Bandera and R I Shukhevich arise across the Ukraine, memorial events and torchlight processions occur in their memory, and they name streets after them.

1 June 2018

TASS

http://tass.com/society/1007559

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

18 April 2017. The Imperial Family… What They Were, What They Weren’t

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The Imperial family aren’t “Martyrs” in the Church’s eyes… they didn’t suffer for the Faith. They’re “Passionbearers”… those who bore their suffering and deaths in a Christian manner. This isn’t a minor distinction. It means that the hoorah that you hear from certain ROCOR elements is pure BS. The Church doesn’t endorse monarchy… it never did… it doesn’t… it won’t. Individuals within the Church did… but that doesn’t mean that the Church “as Church” endorses and blesses monarchy. It’s just one of the many forms of human government out there. The Church DOES bless the Christian forbearance shown by the Romanov family. It says “amen” to that. However, that doesn’t mean that it approves of the system that they headed. If the Church called them “Royal Martyrs”, it’d give monarchy a boost, but the Church chose not to call them that. The ROCOR had to adjust its terminology at the Reconciliation… the Centre made it clear that “Royal Martyr” was unacceptable (it also made it clear that the ROCOR couldn’t canonise non-Orthodox just because the Reds killed them).

In this year of the centenary of the October Revolution, we’re going to hear much rubbish from the usual sources. I’d remind you that many of them had Nazi collaborators in their families… that doesn’t bother them. Puts a far different face on their rants, doesn’t it? Let’s honour the Romanov family’s faith and let’s fight the loudmouth anti-communists. After all, they gave succour and support to Hitler… what more need I say?

BMD

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Chrystia Freeland’s Granddad was Indeed a Nazi Collaborator… So Much for Russian Disinformation

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The news conference on Monday by Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland was interesting not for the announcement that Canada was extending its training mission to the Ukraine but for the questions and answers about the minister’s grandfather. There have been a number of articles circulating about Freeland’s Ukrainian grandfather Michael Chomiak and his ties to the Nazis. Some of those articles have appeared on pro-Russian websites. Freeland, who strongly supports the Ukraine and is a major critic of Russia’s seizure of the Crimea, suggested to journalists that the articles about her grandfather were part of a Russian disinformation campaign (The Russian government sees Freeland as virulently anti-Russian and placed her on their travel ban). Freeland told reporters after they raised questions about the articles about her grandfather:

American officials have publicly said, and even Angela Merkel has publicly said, that there were efforts on the Russian side to destabilise Western democracies, and I think it shouldn’t come as a surprise if these same efforts were used against Canada.

The Globe and Mail also reported that an official in Freeland’s office denied the minister’s grandfather was a Nazi collaborator. In addition, those in the Canadian-Ukrainian community dismissed the claims were outright. Paul Grod, president of the Canadian Ukrainian Congress told the Globe and Mail:

It’s the continued Russian modus operandi that they have. Fake news, disinformation, and targeting different individuals. It’s just so outlandish when you hear some of these allegations… whether they are directed at Minister Freeland or others.

Well, it actually isn’t so outlandish. Michael Chomiak WAS a Nazi collaborator. What are the sources for the information that Freeland’s grandfather worked for the Nazis? For starters, The Ukraine Archival Records held by the Province of Alberta. It has a whole file on Chomiak, including his own details about his days editing the newspaper Krakivski Visti. Chomiak noted he edited the paper first in Kraków in Poland and then in Vienna. The reason he edited the paper in Vienna was because he had to flee with his Nazi colleagues as the Russians advanced into Poland (the Russians tended to execute collaborators well as SS members).

So what was the Krakivski Visti? The Nazis seized it, like a number of other publications, from their Jewish owners and then operated them as propaganda outlets. Here is what the Los Angeles Holocaust Museum has to say about Krakivski Visti and a similar newspaper, Lvivski Visti, both publications associated with the Nazi régime:

The editorial boards carried out a policy of soliciting Ukrainian support for the German cause. It was typical, within these publications, to not to give any accounts of the German genocidal policy, and largely, the editions resorted to silencing the mass killing of Jews in Galicia. Ukrainian newspapers presented the Jewish Question in light of the official Nazi propaganda, corollary to the Jewish world conspiracy. In 1943 and 1944, both Lvivski Visti and Krakivski Visti hailed the German-approved formation of the 14th Waffen SS Division Galichina, composed of Ukrainian volunteers.

So much for Russian disinformation. On Wednesday the Globe and Mail reported:

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland knew for more than two decades that her maternal Ukrainian grandfather was the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper.

8 March 2017

David Pugliese

Ottawa Citizen

http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/chrystia-freelands-granddad-was-indeed-a-nazi-collaborator-so-much-for-russian-disinformation

Editor:

The Galician Uniates are the diehard nationalists in the Ukraine. Firstly, the fact that they were under Habsburg and Polish rule cut them off for centuries from their fellows in Malorossiya. Secondly, the semi-Polish creole spoken in Galicia isn’t common… most “Ukrainians” speak Russian or Surzhik (a dialect more biased towards Russian than “Ukrainian”). Thirdly, Galicia is the Dogpatch of the Ukraine… it’s the poorest and most backwards region (the abject poverty of the region is what led so many to emigrate). It has NOTHING in common with Cossacks, yet Uniates prance about in Cossack costume… there’s only one problem… ALL Cossacks are anti-Uniate to the bone. If the Cossacks caught Poles or Muslims… they’d let them live and go home. If they caught Uniates, they killed them on the spot as traitors to Holy Rus and its faith.

The notional Ukraine is sinking and all of Freeland’s soldiers and all of Freeland’s money won’t put Humpty back together again.

Here’s another interesting take on l’Affaire Freeland from the Jewish POV

BMD

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