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How Ukraine reacted to Israeli reminders of Ukrainian involvement in the Holocaust

Ukraine's hostile reaction to the Israeli President's reminder of the role of Ukrainian nationalists like Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych in Nazi atrocities and in the Holocaust shows a Ukraine that is becoming steeped in neo-fascist and neo-Nazi thinking.

Just when one thought that the tragic-farce of post-coup Ukrainian politics couldn’t get any lower, one only has to look at the latest statements from the criminals running the prison that is Kiev politics to realise that it gets worse and worse.

Recently Israeli President Reuven Rivlin visited Kiev where he spoke before the Rada (parliament). He told his audience some very grim truths about the history of the Ukrainian nationalist Nazi collaborators. Vile genocidal men like Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych, who have been given posthumous state honours, had monuments erected to their works and streets named after them, are some of the most disgustingly evil men in modern history.


Their twin organisations, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army and the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists, collaborated with Hitler’s Germany, helping the fascist forces to murder thousands. The victims included Jews, Russians, patriotic Soviet Ukrainians, and Romani. Amongst the most infamous of the many atrocities in which the Ukrainian Nazi-collaborators participated in was the Babi Yar massacre in 1941. At Babi Yar over 33,000 Jews were murdered in cold blood.


The President of Israel stated this fact and said that if Israel and Ukraine are going to build closer ties then this tragedy must be acknowledged in the same way that Germany and Austria have acknowledged and atoned for the crimes of their past leaders.

Rivlin was clearly deluded if he thought that a Parliament stuffed full of anti-Semites and Nazi apologists was going to bother listening to what he said. This is just one of many areas where the Kiev regime shows how hopeless, helpless and downright despicable it is.

Far from atoning and apologising for Ukrainian participation in Holocaust atrocities, Oleh Lyashko, leader of the ultra-right Radical Party did the opposite.  He called on Rivlin to apologise to Ukraine!

Others predictably chimed in, with Petro Poroshenko adding insult to injury by blaming Russia for everything under the sun. He even claimed that Russia threatens Israel’s existence, though how, no one can say.

The truth of the matter is that President Putin is attempting to coordinate a peace summit in Moscow between the Israelis and Palestinians. Russia is in a unique position of being respected by both sides in the ongoing conflict. One could not for example say the same for the US or Iran. Because of this it is just possible to hope that such a summit might reach a meaningful settlement in a conflict that has lasted for far too long. It is crucial to remember that it was the Russian Federation that tabled a UN resolution condemning the glorification of fascism whilst Ukraine predictably and disgracefully voted against it.

But turning back to Kiev, there is something important that those who educate future generations about the Holocaust need to be aware of.

In spite of anything else, the fact of the matter is that under the post-coup regime Ukraine has become the most systematically anti-Semitic government in the world. No other state has a government and parliament packed full of people who glorify Nazi-collaborators, who march with armed gangs of men carrying torches and fascist banners whilst chanting neo-Nazi slogans.

The Israeli president would likely not visit Iran due to a war of words that has gone on between the two countries since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, though the danger of an actual military conflict between the two countries is greatly overstated. Why then did he go to Kiev, to the capital of a country that has descended into chaos under the banner of neo-fascism? 

One has to say that whilst both post-war German states were effective at atoning for the past, it is deeply ironic if not sad that Germany supports the current regime in Kiev.  The danger in that is neo-fascist and neo-Nazi sentiments become re-legitimised, inspiring others in Europe to turn away from the values of peace and fraternity, and turn back to fascist ideologies.

The entire world should condemn the current state of Ukraine. Many however choose instead – whether out out of geopolitical interest or Russophobia – to turn a blind eye.  Just as they did in the 1930s.

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