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Four Years after Odessa Pogrom – Neo-Nazism still rampages in Ukraine

Fascist elements that caused Odessa massacre still prevalent in the nation

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On May 9th, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and some other states celebrated Victory Day, a monument to the destruction of Nazism by the people of the USSR together with those in Europe.

Victory Day is a day to celebrate the annihilation of Nazism from the face of Europa. We look towards the bright future, but we cannot forget our past, lest we repeat it. In Ukraine, however, for the past four years, we have seen the dark clouds of neo-Nazism overcast.

It has been four years, and a little over one week, since tragic events occurred in an Odessa Trade Union building, claiming the lives of around 48 people in an arson assault by official numbers, though by some sources, the number of those killed during the Odessa clashes, may indeed be as high as 397.

Keeping with the theme of remembering the past, but looking to the future, in this article, we will call to memory the anniversary of the Odessa massacre and the events that occurred, and also to prove with examples, that the Neo-Nazi elements which caused it, are still prevalent throughout Ukraine.

The Fourth Anniversary of the Odessa Massacre

For those unaware, the Russophone and cosmopolitan city of Odessa, built by Russian Empress Catherine the Great is located in south-western Ukraine on the Black Sea.

When Odessa was founded, it was a part of the region known as New Russia (Novorossia), to differentiate from North-Central Ukraine, which was called Little Russia.

On May 2nd, 2014, a group of fascists and ultra-nationalists, participants in the broader Maidan coup which seized power in Kiev that same year, stormed the Trade Unions House, and set it ablaze, by throwing Molotov cocktails. They prepared the weapons openly on the street, amidst clashes in the streets with anti-Maidan and pro-federalization Ukrainian citizens who were voicing their concern against the rising tide of Nazism.

People were burned alive, they were suffocated by smoke, they fell from the building, some were strangled, and others shot, others still beaten to death. Those killed included youth, older citizens, and pregnant women including their babies (obviously). Officially 48 people died, however other sources are claiming the actual number was 397, and we will explore this difference briefly.

Above all, I’d like to say there is no reporting on these events I can offer, which has not already been handled better by the experts who were on the scene as it happened. This is a four-year-old story, and as a result, it has already been covered extensively, so I do not wish to relive the events, which have already been described, and say what has already been said.

In summary, however, I can offer these observations and articles. One of the best articles on the subject, with regards to its graphical documentation of the horror that took place in Odessa was this piece by American journalist George Eliason. Below is one the more tame photos it contains.

The photos are hard to look at, however, if you do not truly know what happened, or doubt the accounts, you must see for yourself the evidence, provided by this American journalist. Some of the photos are highly graphic, however not gory (with blood), but there is one of a person who was burned alive and possibly raped, and another of a pregnant woman who was apparently strangled as neo-Nazis wave Ukrainian flags from the window.

This article contains key evidence of what amounts to a Nazi pogrom in 21st century Europe, however, the photos there are not all simply of the dead, but they reveal and expose the perpetrators in action. This is all for the purpose of documentation, not shock.

Examples of the non-graphically disturbing, but important evidence the article contains, is this video, in which the leader of one of the Ukrainian ultra-nationalist bands clearly gives orders to kill the anti-Maidan citizens and demonstrators.

In this video, one can see the pro-federalization citizens huddled up by the large Trade Unions House  , as the neo-Nazis swarm in and begin setting fires. The video is surreal, like the image of the Mongol Horde descending on Kiev which set fire to the Church of the Tithes in 1240.

That video alone provides an excellent example of what happened. I wasn’t aware Batu Khan was a “Hero of Ukraine”.

Later the Ukrainian ultra-nationalist extremist organization (banned in Russia) Right Sector expressly claimed responsibility for the Odessa 2 May massacre. They’re proud of it.

The Ukrainian law enforcement authorities have failed to investigate properly and bring to liability even those of neo-Nazi thugs who were originally detained as taking part in the Odessa mass murder.

Instead they persecuted and allegedly tortured the anti-Maidan activists who survived the massacre.

How Many Victims

Some of the victims

Take a moment to look at the faces of the victims. It’s important to understand, before we discuss the numbers of casualties, that these weren’t just numbers on a clipboard. These were people, they were burned alive, some were raped, some were strangled, some killed with smoke, others fell from burning buildings, survivors were shot and others beaten cruelly.

For example, Christina Bezhanitskaya, seen in the top right and bottom left, was born in 1992, was beaten to death on May 2nd, 2014, during the pogrom. These were human beings, and now they are gone.

As noted earlier in this article, there is debate as to the number of victims who actually died during the Odessa massacre.

While the official number and list of those outright murdered in the Trade Union House is 48, historian and publicist Aleksey Ivakin, an Odessa native explains in this Russian language article why he believes the actual number of those killed on that day, was 397, taking into account also fights in the streets, clashes with the police, the neo-Nazis also killed. This number is supported by a variety of sources, one of the most detailed being this Russian link.

Even if the number was “only” 40 people – which no one is claiming, that would still be 40 people killed by a veritable army of neo-Nazis. You saw the video yourself, the last time Odessa saw this was the Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany and its satellites. Thanks to the West, the spirit of Hitler was awoken to wreak havoc on the long-suffering lands of Ukraine.

An Orthodox Church burning to the ground in the war

Why does west support Nazism in Ukraine

As Russians lay photos of the victims outside the Ukrainian embassy in Moscow, the Russian embassy in Washington has complained about the lack of response from the US.

This was a major event, not unlike a terrorist attack, in which large groups of people were killed by Nazis supporting a coup, backed by the US. The US has refused to comment on the actions of the people it supported, just like what happened in Kiev during the Maidan coup itself.

State Department official Victoria Nuland bribing nationalists with…cookies…seriously, we could not possibly make this up if we tried

This is a major issue which must be discussed, why did US officials support a coup in which many of the participants, and the general spirit of which was heavily fascist.

By in large, the Western response to this question, is to claim there was no violence in Ukraine, there were no Nazis, forget the deaths in Odessa, it was a tragic event, it was all Russia’s fault, etc. This is the western goal, to hide the facts of the Maidan coup sponsoring by foreign parties, the neo-Nazism in the Ukraine and the slaughter at Odessa, because once people see it with their own eyes, its impossible to not realize.

The US Department of State official Victoria Nuland had a very difficult time explaining before Congress the presence of Nazis, in the groups which Neo-Cons supported in Ukraine.

In the video, RT reports as Republican Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher from California challenges Nuland over Ukrainian Neo-Nazism.

We did have legitimate election before, and the legitimate president was removed after we had major street violence. There were pictures of people running around that we were told were neo-Nazis,” Rohrabacher challenged Nuland.

Nuland faced a hard time coming up with answers.

First of all the vast majority of those who were participating on Maidan were peaceful protesters. There were mothers and grandmothers and veterans,” Nuland said, but before being able to continue, Rohrabacher reminded the diplomat of vast presence of violent Ukrainian radicals.

I saw those pictures and I also saw a lot of people throwing fire bombs at groups of policemen. There were people shooting into the ranks of police. So, yes, there were mothers with flowers, but there were also very dangerous street fighters engaged in those demonstrations. The question is: were there neo-Nazi groups involved?”

Nuland could not provide a definitive answer, saying that there were many colors of Ukraine involved including very ugly colors.

Referring to these mass murdering Nazis as simply “ugly colors”, is almost as cynical as referring to the Maidan coup as a “Revolution of Dignity”. That is what Ukrainian sources, and official US Government sources (as of last year) call the Maidan coup to this day. Does this look like dignity to you!?!

The Maidan before and during the revolution of “dignity”

Four Years later, Nazism still rampages

One of the most powerful arguments against the false narrative being pushed about the Ukraine crisis, is simply to show these “very ugly colors” to the world. It’s very important to commemorate the victims, but that is only half of what this article is about.

If fascist elements in Ukraine were really a small minority of the forces fighting in the embattled borderlands, if Odessa was just an isolated incident, and the guilty parties were arrested and brought to justice, then this could have just been an anniversary article to commemorate a tragedy.

This article must be more than that, however, because Odessa was not an isolated incident. The people of Ukraine suffer daily beneath a criminal regime that allows neo-Nazis to rape Ukrainian girls, torture and burn Ukrainian people alive.

SHOCKING: ‘Hero of Ukraine’ Nadia Savchenko now accuses Kiev for Maidan Snipers

The fact that it was pro-Maidan forces, that organized the snipers which fired at both police and protesters, in February of 2014, in Kiev was revealed by independent researchers long before. I have written about this subject as well, at The Duran, though I highly recommend the very detailed link to the researchers work above.

Some more “Dignity” in the centre of Kiev on January 22, 2014.

The Ukrainian government is divided between oligarchs like Poroshenko, who care nothing for Ukraine, and wish to prostitute the country to the highest bidder, and their neo-Nazi enforcers who do the actual fighting.

It is worth noting, that as I’ve said before in numerous articles, there is a dichotomy between the kleptocratic criminal element, in control of the government itself, and the ultra-nationalist and Neo-Nazi doing the fighting for them. A good example is when Poland, a very Russophobic state, banned commemorating WW2 era Ukrainian Nazi Bandera, (a Hero according to Neo-Nazis), and called upon Ukraine to do the same.

Poland bans Bandera – Ukrainian nationalists demand Poroshenko condemn their NATO ‘ally’

This put Poroshenko between a rock and a hard place, he must please his Western overlords, but at the same time, his fascist subjects would happily overthrow him if he does not continue chanting “Glory to Ukraine”.

The real fighting is done by the radical Nazi elements, while the actual administration of the country is the work of greedy oligarchs, like Poroshenko, with hardly a shred of patriotism in their blood. No one is saying Poroshenko’s isn’t leading a pro-Nazi regime, he has said numerous horrifying things, such as in this video, when he said they will win the war in Ukraine, when Eastern Ukrainian children are hiding in bomb shelters, and their (Nationalist) children will go to schools.

He has no more care for the lives of children than the Nazis, but the difference is the Nazis kill children for ideological reasons, whereas their leaders indirectly profit from the war. Poroshenko is more of the “Let the poor idiots die in wars. I want to see if I can stuff as much money in my pockets, as I can chocolate in my mouth” kind of tyrant, rather than the passionate “For the Glory of Ukraine!” type.

He doesn’t have a patriotic bone in his body, certainly not the noble type, but not even the ultranationalist. Say what you will about those vile Nazi’s, despicable as they are, they love the fatherland and are happy to die for it. Poroshenko has no intention of dying for anyone, let alone Ukraine. His main goal is to rob the country blind, 1990s style, while everyone is distracted by the Nazis running rampant, and murdering people in Donbass. How can he possibly rob Ukraine blind while no one is looking, if he’s dead?

So while he profits, those “very ugly colors”, Victoria Nuland swept under the rug, murder Ukrainian children. It’s these examples of every day Neo-Nazism that must be exposed, in order to dispel the lies about Ukraine.

You’ll know Nazism when you see it, and below are some examples, illustrating that the circumstances which caused the Odessa massacre remains the norm in Ukraine. The people who support this violence are neither patriots nor Heroes of Ukraine. They are murderers of Ukrainian children, rapists of Ukrainian women, the scum of the earth, and daemons.

Only devils would do this to any people, let alone their own

Recent Examples of neo-Nazism

Below are some recent examples of Neo-Nazism in Ukraine, which occurred in the last several weeks. This is not even going as far as four years back, but here are several stories which emerged from different sources in different languages all within the last four weeks.

Ukraine neo-Nazis celebrate the Original Nazis in Galatian SS Memorial

Ukraine is a very diverse territory, formed by the combination of regions which often had less in common with eachother, than they did with neighboring countries.

For example, Western Ukraine was a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and fell under the influence of Uniate Catholics trying to persecute Russian Orthodox Ukrainians.

Among those Uniates was Stepan Bandera, an infamous fascist leader in WW2, who united with Adolf Hitler against Russia (and Soviet Ukraine), as this declaration describes.

From Bandera’s region, an entire division of the Waffen SS, the Galicia division, was formed, which is considered a dark stain on fair Ukraine, by her sane residents. Traditionally, Ukrainians recognized this was a western plot to destroy Slavic people, however many Western Ukrainians fought with the Nazis in this division. Those who joined the Galicia SS division and other Ukrainian Nazi collaborators justified their adherence to the Third Reich in terms of anti-communism and by a reactionary racial conception of Europe, which embraced the Ukrainians but excluded the “Asiatic” Russians and, of course, Jews.

In 2010 the pro-US president of the Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko conferred the highest state honor of “Hero of Ukraine” upon Stepan Bandera.

Uniates and Ultra-Nationalists march with Bandera portrait

Uniates and Ultra-Nationalists march with Bandera portrait

After the Maidan coup, large groups of people can be found throughout Ukraine, especially in the West,  openly and proudly celebrating the original Nazis, wearing their uniforms, and hailing their memory.

Uniate Priest conducts memorial service for Nazis, note the Neo-Nazis in WW2 Uniform with swastikas

Uniate Priest conducts memorial service for Nazis, note the Neo-Nazis in WW2 Uniform with swastikas

In late April, around Hitler’s Birthday on the 20th, one such celebration took place. Ukrainian far-right activists dressed in Nazi uniforms and celebrated this dark aspect of history. Western media, however, was concerned that Russian media would use this as an opportunity to say “I told you so” saying this is “playing into the hands of Russian media

So, in other words, …they are concerned that the factual reality in Ukraine…will fit “Russian propaganda” if exposed. That would make it appear as if the Russian media are telling the truth, and it is the western narrative which is the propaganda, and literally is trying to defend and cover up the actions of Nazis.

Vandals deface Grieving Mother Statue with Nazi slogans

On April 22nd, a monument in Poltava, near the birthplace of legendary Russian-Ukrainian author Nikolai Gogol, fascists defaced a “grieving mother” statue, with anti-Semitic Nazi propaganda and graffiti saying “Heil Hitler” and “Death to the Jews”

On the first of May, Nazis disrupt the May Day demonstration

Neo-Nazi forces disrupted a demonstration of peaceful petitioners on the May Day.

Those are just three simple examples of Nazi incidents reported in the media, in the last several weeks in Ukraine.

The prevalence of neo-Nazism in Ukrainian Social Media

It’s one thing for a story to be reported on in the media, this is often a highly curated event, which no matter how unbiased the source was, can sometimes not show the complete reality of the situation. For those who speak Russian and/or Ukrainian however, and are active on social media, it is very easy to see how widespread neo-Nazism has become in the post-coup Ukraine.

This is NOT to say that all Ukrainians are Nazis and hate Russians, there are still plenty of Ukrainians who love and consider themselves Russian, and more so who have family in Russia.

This peaceful cross procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate demonstrates that the legitimate church can raise over 100,000 people, whereas the neo-Nazi supported and illegitimate Kiev Patriarchate only gathered a crowd of around 2000, so there still are good people in Ukraine, however many are afraid. In the video below, the legitimate Church (as recongnized by Orthodox Canon Law) is shown up until the 3 min. mark, and then the march of the nationalist church.

Here is another march, only of the legitimate church in Western Ukraine, which gathered around 20,000 people, around an old castle. Often times these marches are threatened by Neo-Nazis, who are too frightened to carry out their threats when they see the massive crowd of believers.

More than ever, the authorities in Kiev, and their militias try and suppress the people, many of whom would be more sympathetic to Russia if they were not afraid.

Still, it would be a lie not to say, that there is not a massive neo-Nazi presence in Ukrainian social media. Sadly, even if they are indeed a minority, the neo-Nazis march freely in Kiev and other major cities. There are now likely more Nazis in Ukraine per square meter, than any other state in Europe.

This is not a reflection on the Russian or Ukrainian people, as much as the pernicious western influence which has poisoned people’s minds there.

Here are some examples of “normal” social media posts displaying blatant Nazi propaganda, in the form of screenshots sent to me by those who were concerned and wanted to document what is happening.

Above, is a post with memorial photos of the victims of the Odessa pogrom.

And in this photo, we can see a user, whose profile picture seems to be a cat with a Hitler style mustache, saying that the second of May, the date of the Odessa massacre should be a national holiday in Ukraine.

Here is another example of pro-fascists posts across social media.

In this disgusting photo, the post is comparing the hellfire which burned innocent people, to the Holy Fire. The Holy Fire is a miracle in which Orthodox people believe an uncreated Fire manifests itself every year on Orthodox Pascha (Easter) at Christ’s tomb, which does not burn faithful people who touch it. It has been seen by millions of witnesses. Link to information and photos in many languages including English.

Sensible Ukrainian and Russian citizens do see and report these posts to Facebook as extremist propaganda, but Facebook seems to prefer censoring alternative media posting sensible and well-researched articles exposing extremists, rather than the actual extremists. This is the kind of insanity that normal Ukrainian citizens have to suffer under, all thanks to a Western coup which not only revived, but successfully revitalized Nazism in Europe.

Eternal Memory to Fallen – Never Again for the Living

Odessa – a beautiful seaside city founded by Empress Catherine the Great of Russia

I wish Eternal Memory to all the innocent people who lost their lives, when modern Nazis burned Odessa for the first time since the Great Patriotic War. May they rest in peace.

Beautiful Odessa

As to the living, it’s hard to sleep peacefully knowing such devils are raping, torturing and murdering across Ukraine, while the authorities in Kiev act like its business as usual, and the west ignores it completely.

Odessa however, is a Hero-City, she survived Nazi invasion once, when there was honor in Ukraine, and like in all Rus’, may God grant that there may again, be peace and honor in Ukraine.

Odessa – Hero City. Note the flag which says the 2nd of May

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Germany Wants Nuclear Bombers

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them.

The Duran

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Via VoltaireNet.org:


Germany’s armed forces are currently studying the possibility of acquiring nuclear bombers capable of using the new American B61-12 atomic bombs.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon itself plans to deploy these new atomic bombs in the German region of Eifel, in violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The German air force already has multi-tasking Tornado warplanes, which are already capable of deploying American atomic bombs. But those aircraft are going to be replaced, possibly, by European-developed Eurofighters, or by United States manufactured F/A-18 Super Hornets.

Either way, the warplane that Germany selects will have to be equipped with the AMAC (Aircraft Monitoring and Control) system, which allows the use of the new American atomic bombs and enables the regulation of the power of the explosion as well as at what height the bombs explode after they are launched.

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them, and believes that this gives it the right to sit on the UN Security Council sharing the permanent member position occupied by France.

Both countries would thus represent the European Union, under the auspices of NATO.

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1st since Notre Dame: Yellow Vests back despite ‘unifying’ disaster & they are angry

‘Yellow Vests’ march in Paris for 23rd straight week.

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Via RT…


Yellow Vests protests brought clashes and tear gas back to the streets of Paris, despite politicians’ calls for “unity” in the wake of the Notre Dame fire. For protesters, the response to the fire only showed more inequality.

Saturday’s protests mark the 23rd straight weekend of anti-government demonstrations, but the first since Notre Dame de Paris went up in flames on Monday. Officials were quick to criticize the protesters for returning to the streets so soon after the disaster.

“The rioters will be back tomorrow,” Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters on Friday. “The rioters have visibly not been moved by what happened at Notre-Dame.”

For many of the protesters, grief over the destruction of the 800-year-old landmark has made way for anger. With smoke still rising from Notre Dame, a group of French tycoons and businessmen pledged €1 billion to the cathedral’s reconstruction, money that the Yellow Vests say could be better spent elsewhere.

“If they can give dozens of millions to rebuild Notre Dame, they should stop telling us there is no money to respond to the social emergency,” trade union leader Philippe Martinez told France 24.

Saturday’s protests saw a return to scenes familiar since the Yellow Vests first mobilized in November to protest a fuel tax hike. Demonstrators in Paris’ Bastille district set barricades on fire and smashed vehicles, and police deployed tear gas to keep the crowds at bay.

Sporadic incidents of vandalism and looting were reported across the city, and some journalists even reported rioters throwing feces at police.

60,000 police officers were deployed across the country, and in Paris, a security perimeter was set up around Notre Dame. A planned march that would have passed the site was banned by police, and elsewhere, 137 protesters had been arrested by mid afternoon, police sources told Euronews.

Beginning as a show of anger against rising fuel costs in November, the Yellow Vests movement quickly evolved into a national demonstration of rage against falling living standards, income inequality, and the perceived elitism and pro-corporation policies of President Emmanuel Macron. Over 23 weeks of unrest, Macron has made several concessions to the protesters’ demands, but has thus far been unable to quell the rising dissent.

After Notre Dame caught fire on Monday, the president postponed a television address to the nation, during which he was expected to unveil a package of tax cuts and other economic reforms, another measure to calm the popular anger in France.

Macron’s address will be held on Thursday.

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O Canada! The True North Strong and Free – Not

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence.

Jim Jatras

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Authored by James George Jatras via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


Canadian visitors to Washington sometimes wonder why their embassy stands at the foot of Capitol Hill.

The answer? To be close to where Canada’s laws are made.

A main showcase of Ottawa’s craven servility to Washington is Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s complicity in the US-led regime change operation being conducted against Venezuela. Not content with ruining his own country with multiculturalism, polysexualism, and the like, Li’l Justin has acted in lockstep with Big Brother to the south inslapping sanctions on Venezuelan officials and serving as a US agent of influence, especially with other countries in the western hemisphere:

‘A Canadian Press report published at the end of January revealed that Canadian diplomats worked systematically over several months with their Latin American counterparts in Caracas to prepare the current regime-change operation, pressing [Venezuelan President Nicolás] Maduro’s right-wing opponents to set aside their differences and mount a joint challenge to the government. “The turning point,” said the Canadian Press [Global News], “came Jan. 4, when the Lima Group … rejected the legitimacy of Maduro’s May 2018 election victory and his looming January 10 inauguration, while recognizing the ‘legitimately elected’ National Assembly.” The report cited an unnamed Canadian official as saying the opposition “were really looking for international support of some kind, to be able to hold onto a reason as to why they should unite, and push somebody like Juan Guaidó.”

‘One day prior to Maduro’s inauguration, [Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia] Freeland spoke to Guaidó, the newly-elected National Assembly speaker, by telephone to urge him to challenge the elected Venezuelan president.’

But that’s not all. Canada is out front and center in the “Five Eyes” intelligence agencies’ war on China’s Huawei – with direct prompting from US legislators and intelligence.  As explained by Col. Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Gen. Colin Powell, it’s not that Huawei violated any law when circumventing US sanctions but it is the US that is acting illegally by unilaterally imposing sanctions that were never agreed to internationally. But that’s OK – when it comes to Washington’s claims of jurisdiction over every human being on the planet, Justin and Chrystia are happy to oblige!

Also, let’s not forget Chrystia’s role in keeping the pot boiling in Ukraine. It would of course be cynical (and probably racist) to attribute anything relating to Ukraine to her own interesting family background …

To be fair, the lickspittle attitude of Canadian officials towards their masters south of the 49th parallel is hardly unique in the world. Also to be fair, it’s natural and would be generally beneficial for Canada to have a positive relationship with a powerful, kindred neighbor rather than a negative one. Think of Austria’s ties to Germany, or the Trans-Tasman relationship of Australia and New Zealand, or the links that still exist between Russia and Ukraine despite efforts by the west to set them against each other (as, for example, Spain and Portugal were at loggerheads for several centuries, when the latter was a loyal ally of Spain’s foe, Great Britain, to such an extent that Portugal was sometimes shown on maps and globes in the same pink as British possessions; a similar situation existed between Argentina and British ally Chile).

A close and mutually advantageous relationship is one thing, but Canada’s de facto loss of independence is another. Not only does the US control Canada’s diplomacy, military, and intelligence but also her financial system (with, among other levers, the notorious FATCA law, which places Canadian institutions under the supervision of the IRS, with Canada’s revenue service acting, care of the Canadian taxpayer, as a cat’s paw for not only the IRS but the NSA and other snooping agencies). As explained by one Canadian nationalist (yes, they do exist!), the redoubtable David Orchard, trade is also a critical issue:

‘Canada …, after almost three decades of “free trade” with the U.S., has more than $1.2 trillion in federal and provincial debt, large deficits at every level, no national child or dental care, high university tuition, miserly old age pensions, years of massive budget cuts, and giveaway prices for its exports of oil, gas, timber and minerals.

‘For 150 years, great Canadian leaders have warned that without an economic border with the United States, we would soon no longer have a political border.

‘We once owned the world’s largest farm machinery maker, Massey Harris, headquartered in Toronto; built the world’s largest and most respected marketer of wheat and barley, the Canadian Wheat Board, based in Winnipeg; created a great transcontinental railway system, beginning in Montreal, which tied our country together; and saw Vancouver’s shipyards produce the beautiful Fast Cat ferry.

‘Instead of spending hundreds of billions on foreign-made machinery, electronics, automobiles, ships, fighter jets and passenger aircraft (even payroll systems for federal employees!), we can build our own, both for the domestic and export market.

‘We once designed and built the world’s most advanced jet interceptor, the Avro Arrow, so we know it can be done. [Emphasis added] With Canada’s resources and ingenuity, it could create a prosperous, domestically controlled economy that would give Canadians multiple benefits, security and pride of ownership. All that is required is some of the will that drove our ancestors to create an alternate power in North America. As George-Étienne Cartier, the great Québécois Father of Confederation, put it, “Now everything depends on our patriotism.”’ [Note: Orchard is the author of the must-read book The Fight for Canada: Four Centuries of Resistance to American Expansionism. To begin at the beginning, in the late 1680s, as part of English-French rivalry in North America, Massachusetts Puritans sought to root out the nest of popish deviltry known as Quebec. Following their disastrous 1690 defeat, they decided to fight Satan closer to home by hanging witches. The rest, as they say, is history…]

Scratch a Canadian patriot and you’ll hear about the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow. As a watershed moment in Canada’s downward slide into subservience, the cancellation of what by all accounts was a magnificent aircraft – and a snapshot of what Canada’s international competitiveness (including in advanced aerospace) could have looked like had it been able to develop independently – might have been the point of being sucked into the American vortex. As noted by one response to my suggestion that Ottawa’s stance on Venezuela amounted to Canada’s annexation by the US: “Canadian here…unfortunately, the above is true (not literally of course, but in practice). It goes back even before the time of Diefenbaker, who canceled our Avro Arrow program on demand from the US – thus destroying our aerospace industry and causing brain drain to the US/Europe.”

To this day, the decision of then-Prime Minister John Diefenbaker to kill the Arrow project (and “put 14,528 Avro employees, as well as nearly 15,000 other employees in the Avro supply chain of outside suppliers, out of work”) on what came to be known as “Black Friday,” February 20, 1959, remains controversial and shrouded in mystery. A mix of budgetary, political, technological, and personality factors has been cited, none of them conclusive. Pressure from the US side, including unwillingness of Washington to purchase a Canadian aircraft when the US could pressure them to buy American planes and missiles, no doubt played a key role: “Instead of the CF-105, the RCAF invested in a variety of Century Series fighters from the United States. These included the F-104 Starfighter (46 percent of which were lost in Canadian service), and (more controversial, given the cancellation of the Arrow) the CF-101 Voodoo. The Voodoo served as an interceptor, but at a level of performance generally below that expected of the Arrow.”

While we may never know reliably why Diefenbaker cancelled the Arrow or how Canada or Canadian industry might have followed a different path, there’s no question of the superior capabilities of the Arrow. As it happens, one of the few pilots who had a chance to test the Arrow in an impromptu friendly dogfight is now-retired USAF fighter pilot Col. George Jatras, later US Air Attaché in Moscow (also, this analyst’s father). As he related in 2017:

‘I’ve received a number of messages in the last couple days about this bird, including some that say it may be revived. I don’t know how The Arrow would compare to today’s aircraft, but I had a first-hand lesson on how it faired against the F-102.

‘In 1959, I was stationed at Suffolk County AFB on Long Island with the 2nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron. We had an informal exchange program with a Canadian fighter squadron stationed near Montreal. From time to time, two or four aircraft from one of the squadrons would fly to the other’s base on a weekend cross country.

‘On one such exchange, I was #3 in a four ship formation led by [former Tuskegee airmanErnie Craigwell (I don’t recall who the other pilots were). As we entered Canadian airspace, cruising at about 40,000 ft., we spotted a contrail well above our altitude (probably at 50,000ft.) and closing very fast.  As the other aircraft appeared to be passing by, we could clearly see the delta shaped wing and knew it was the Avro Arrow that the Canadian pilots had told us about. Then, instead of just passing by, he rolled in on us! Ernie called for a break and we split into elements. When we talked about the encounter afterwards we all agreed that our first thought was, “This guy is in for a surprise; he doesn’t know that he’s taking on the F-102.”  Well, we were the ones in for a surprise. Even with two elements covering each other, not one of us could get on his tail. His power and maneuverability were awesome.  After he had played with us for a few minutes, like a cat with four mice, he zoomed back up to about 50K and went on his way. What an aircraft! What a shame that it never went into production.’

What is perhaps most curious about the Arrow’s demise is that “everything was ordered brutally destroyed; plans, tools, parts, and the completed planes themselves were to be cut up, destroyed, scrapped and everything made to disappear.”  Why? Well, security of course! Don’t engage in conspiracy theories …

The Canadian national anthem finishes with a pledge: “O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.” It should be noted that understandably resentful Loyalists fleeing the US following the American Revolution were a major contribution to the growth of Canada’s English-speaking population. American troops – back when we were the plucky underdog fighting the mighty British Empire – invaded Canada in 1775 and during the War of 1812 but were defeated. Relations got testy during the American Civil War as well, and even afterwards the US was wary of a proposed united “Kingdom of Canada,” hence the choice of the name “Dominion” in 1967. If today’s Canadians think we-all down here don’t know whom they’ve mostly had in mind to “stand on guard” against all this time, they’d better think again.

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence – eh?

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