Friday, March 21, 2014

Who are these neo-Nazi bogeymen in Ukraine?

I'm pasting the most relevant graphs here, since most frequently I hear that Pravy Sector and Svoboda are powerful neo-Nazi bogeyman who will... do what, I'm not sure, but they're definitely the worst guys since Hitler, all pro-Russians assure us [emphasis mine]:

The leader of the Right Sector is Dmytro Yarosh, born and raised in the predominantly Russian speaking south-eastern city of Dniprodzerzhinsk. Yarosh was a member of the Young Pioneers and the Countrywide Leninist Communist Youth League  and served two years in the Soviet Army. One of the key forces during the Kyiv Revolution, the Right Sector has many Russian speaking members and has not been associated with any ‘fascist’ or anti-Jewish statements. In his first foreign interview, Yarosh told TIME that while the revolution needs to steer the country into a new direction, not dependent on either the West or East, he understands that any new opposition government is not likely to carve out a place for him and his men.

The Svoboda party was established in 1991 but only within the last four years attained a noticeable profile. Both Svoboda and Right Sector are very minor players on the current political landscape and have no realistic hope of a major role in the coming government. Svoboda members have recently bullied a TV journalist. Svoboda formally says it is not anti-European, nor anti-Russian, nor anti- Jewish but pro-Ukrainian.

Actually, the ‘anti-Semitic’ theme is now being played by Moscow at low volume ever since the chief Rabbi of Ukraine, seconded by every major Ukrainian Jewish organization, issued statements categorically affirming the freedoms Jews have in Ukraine and supporting the new Kyiv government. There are no instances of any Human Rights Watch organization reporting either Jewish or Russian “persecution” in Ukraine.

What the West does not understand about the “right”-ist groups in Ukraine is that they are here because the anti-Imperialist battle is not over, and they are not that frightening. They are certainly not saying “ban all foreigners…or Russians… or Jews” like Right groups in other European countries. What they are saying is it is time to save their culture and society which the Russians destroyed.

Europe and the EU have many more militant, far-right parties than Ukraine does, and yet these countries are not under existential threat as Ukraine is from Russia. Their language and culture are not under systematic assault as Ukrainian is by Russia. Extreme nationalism is a reaction, not a cause.  If it was OK to be pro-Ukrainian without being accused of fascism, if it was considered normal to defend the Ukrainian language the same way France's gov't. defends French, or Estonia's gov't. defends Estonian, then there would be little cause for nationalist fervor in Ukraine.  

And again, I repeat that there are way more neo-Nazis in Russia than Ukraine. Go to YouTube and search "skinheads russia" or "neo-nazis Russia" and see what horrible videos pop up!

By Adrian Bryttan
March 21, 2014 | Euromaidan PR

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