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Friday, January 22, 2010

Unity Day 20 Years Ago: Kyiv-Lviv Human Chain

On January 22, 1990, Ukrainians took to the highway to make a human chain that united Kyiv and Lviv.



With Ukraine still part of the USSR, the move symbolized the Ukrainian resurgence (or rather its early perestroika-driven signs) after centuries of foreign domination.

Today, Yushchenko finally awarded Stepan Bandera with the honorary title of the Hero of Ukraine.

Video embedded from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7JfYDP698E

14 comments:

Ropi said...

And my ex-girlfriend born on exactly this day. hehe

khabar said...

Yushchenko lost his mind.
How can a sane person celebrate the Unity Day of the nation and make Bandera a hero at the same moment, thus exacerbating Ukraine's division lines?
I understand that he was Russophobe and all but he was also Antisemite and Polonophobe.
How does it correspond with European integration course?
As rumors in Kiev have it, all this done to curb Yulka...

Taras said...

Ropi,

Did you call her?:)


Khabar,

Bandera fought for his native land’s independence from the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany and Poland.

Naturally, many people in Russia, Poland and Israel have negative views of Bandera. Since the 17th century, millions of Poles and Russians fought against Ukraine’s independence, as did the Jews in the Bolshevik government of Russia.

Naturally, millions of Russified Ukrainians have equally negative views of Bandera.

As for Yushchenko’s decision per se, he's playing his own political game. According to a leaked power-sharing agreement, a Yanukovych presidency would make Yushchenko PM.

Therefore, polarizing/mobilizing Yanukovych voters makes sense to Yushchenko, according to this school of thought.

Ropi said...

Yes. :P

khabar said...

You assume Eastern Ukranians were Russified since the beginning of Ukranian history of invades up from the 17th century but in fact from the 10th century Kievan Rus was a centerpiece of Ukranian (and Russian) statehood and was a goal for many invadors from both East and West. Rightfully, I guess, it bore no such name like Kievan Ukria. Inhabitants of this land, though, were Rusy. Later on the noun Rusy modified into the adverb Russian.
Russian Ukranians is just it.

Yushchenko narrows his view of history to some hard-picking facts and Ukraine only to a stretch of its land.

As for Bandera, I am not sure he fought against Nazi Germany. He was a leader of OUN which served to Reichkommisariat Ukraine.

Taras said...

By the time the Grand Duchy of Moscow began expanding and glorifying itself under the name Rossiya, Kyivan Rus had long ceased to exist.

If you look at the maps of Kyivan Rus and the Grand Duchy of Moscow, you’ll see how the two barely overlap.

If we confuse Kyivan Rus and Russia, we might just as well confuse the Indians in India with the Indians in North America, based on Stone Age migration.

The fact that the Greeks had colonies in Southern Italy and the Romans worshiped Greek gods doesn’t make Greece the cradle of Rome and vice versa.

Bandera did collaborate with Nazi Germany. He then fought against it. As an illustration, consider the 621 OUN members executed by the Germans in Babyn Yar.

The USSR initially cooperated with Nazi Germany, training Luftwaffe pilots and Wehrmacht tank crews, holding joint military parades and Gestapo-NKVD conferences. The USSR then fought against Nazi Germany, and quite bitterly so.

The USSR entered WW II with expansionist designs, as an ally of Nazi Germany, and ended it as Germany’s archenemy, with the same designs. Some 20 million Soviet people lost their lives, including 7 million Ukrainians.

When Russia pardons Denikin and Kolchak and praises them as its heroes, Ukraine minds its own business.

I think Russia should do the same when it comes to Ukraine’s heroes.

arvgk said...

The true depth of Yushchenko's depravity and that of his backers in the diaspora and Western governments is indicated by the fact that Bandera and Shukhevych came in the train of the Wehrmacht after Operation Barbarossa, a campaign whose ultimate political objective was to win soil for the German plow by exterminating the Slavic subhumans who were infesting that land, a category that very much included Ukrainians.

It is also indicated by the fact that Yuchchenko never ceases talking about a very flexible number of Ukrainians dead 75+ years, while ignoring the facts that Ukraine's population has declined by ~6 million since the end of "Soviet genocide", or that deaths exceed births by ~240,000/year.

That's right, every time the sun sets, about 650 more Ukrainians have died than were born since the last time, and none of Yushchenko, his backers in the Ukrainian diaspora, or his supporters in Western governments care one bit.

"The USSR initially cooperated with Nazi Germany, training Luftwaffe pilots and Wehrmacht tank crews"

Not true. This military cooperation occured with Weimar Germany, not Nazi Germany, and ended in 1933.

"holding joint military parades"

The location of the parade you mention was captured by the Germans in a couple of days with trivial losses in September 1939.

On 22 June 1941, the German force attacking the site of that parade suffered 22 officers and 290 troops killed in action on the first day of the prolonged Soviet defense of that locality.

Well worth a parade to make the Wehrmacht pay that much blood for a place after they had captured it in 1939.

"and Gestapo-NKVD conferences. The USSR then fought against Nazi Germany, and quite bitterly so."

The USSR entered WW II with expansionist designs,"

The alternative of course was to let the Germans have it for free, instead of having to fight hard for it and suffer the worst casualties they had taken up to that point in the war.


"as an ally of Nazi Germany,"

Hitler didn't think so. Stalin didn't think so. Nazi Germany's actual ally in the first part of the war was Great Britain under Neville Chamberlain, whose concept of "Germany and England as two pillars of European peace and buttresses against Communism" governed the conduct of his foreign policy.


"and ended it as Germany’s archenemy,"

The USSR was Hitler's archenemy from 1923 on, since it governed the land Hitler wished to acquire for Germans.


"with the same designs."

Hitler's design was to exterminate Slavic subhumans. As I mentioned, when "Soviet genocide" ended in 1991, there were 52 million Ukrainians. Now there are 46 million, and deaths exceed births by ~240,000/year.

"Some 20 million Soviet people lost their lives, including 7 million Ukrainians."

Yes, the Germans initiated and waged a war of racial extermination against Slavic subhumans, a category that very much included Ukrainians. Thanks far more to Stalin than to Bandera, Hitler lost that war and Ukrainians now live in Ukraine, not Germans.

Taras said...

Bandera’s initial collaboration with Nazi Germany greatly surpasses longstanding Nazi-Soviet cooperation both in scope and scale.

Each of these players had their own agenda. Bandera craved no land but his own.

Yes, cooperation indeed began during the Weimar Republic and produced a cadre of Soviet-trained Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe generals/functionaries:

Heinz Guderian
Hermann Göring
Erich von Manstein
Wilhelm Bodewin Gustav Keitel
Erich Hoepner
Otto Moritz Walter Model
Walther von Brauchitsch
Walter Gorn
Otto Feige

That’s not to mention the lower-ranking officers, an estimated 20,000.

http://www.inosmi.ru/russia/20090819/251728.html
http://www.proza.ru/2009/04/01/1042
http://ya-uchus.ru/index.php?fid=19&id=1145886283
http://www.istrodina.com/rodina_articul.php3?id=940&n=51
http://www.cripo.com.ua/index.php?sect_id=9&aid=54306

The USSR and Nazi Germany engaged in trade, exchanged prisoners, held Gestapo-NKVD conferences and took joint military action — until they began fighting each other.

Ironically, two years after the joint German-Soviet military parade in Brest, the city became a symbol of heroic sacrifice and resistance.

Ukraine emerged from WW II as both victor and victim. We gained/Sovietized our western territories, marched on Berlin and lost 7 million people along the way.

arvgk said...

"The USSR and Nazi Germany engaged in trade, exchanged prisoners, held Gestapo-NKVD conferences and took joint military action — until they began fighting each other."

Nazi Germany engaged in trade with Great Britain and the United states prior to 1 September 1939. And while Imperial Japan was attacking the USSR in 1938 and 1939, Imperial Japan's largest trading partners were the United States and the British Empire, accounting for about 70% of Japan's total trade. This "cooperation" and "joint military parade" you make so much of was to Soviet advantage in the subsequent war. Imagine the consequences of a blank Soviet refusal to engage Nazi Germany. That would have allowed Chamberlain's policy of "Germany and England as two pillars of European peace and buttresses against Communism" a free run to success. With the Anti-Comintern pact intact and Nazi Germany's western flank secured, the Axis military efforts may well have succeeded, with the consequence being extermination for the "subhuman Slavs" there, a category which very much included Ukrainians.

Again the fact that there are now Ukrainians in Ukraine and not Germans is Stalin's work, certainly not Bandera's.

"Ironically, two years after the joint German-Soviet military parade in Brest, the city became a symbol of heroic sacrifice and resistance."

Indeed. That joint parade was held as part of the ceremony for the Germans placing that fortress in Soviet hands after the Germans had captured it. In 1941, recapturing that fortress cost the Wehrmacht 22 officers and 290 men on the first day of the prolonged Soviet defense of that fortress.

Well worth a parade, wouldn't you say? Or should the Soviets have permitted the Germans to keep it, along with the rest of their gains in 1939?

Taras said...

Of course, the UPA alone would have never defeated Nazi Germany and the USSR.

The French Resistance alone would have never defeated them either.

Luckily, the USSR never occupied France, and the French Resistance never had to fight for recognition in its own country.

When I compare Nazi-Bandera collaboration to Nazi-Soviet cooperation, I see a huge difference in scale and scope.

Unlike these two conquest-crazed superpowers, Bandera wanted no take care of his own land.

I consider the Brest parade an asset to WW II history. You’ll never find it in Soviet history books and documentaries.

It shows how Hitler and Stalin courted and accomodated each other before they came to blows, killing millions of people.

arvgk said...

"Of course, the UPA alone would have never defeated Nazi Germany and the USSR."

Indeed. Dig a bit deeper, and you will find that without the USSR there would now be no Ukrainians in Ukraine. Are you clear on that?

"The French Resistance alone would have never defeated them either."

Sure.

"Luckily, the USSR never occupied France, and the French Resistance never had to fight for recognition in its own country."

However, had the Germans had the genocidal intentions regarding the French that they had for Ukrainians, you would have found the French praying for the Red Army to save them from extinction.

"When I compare Nazi-Bandera collaboration to Nazi-Soviet cooperation, I see a huge difference in scale and scope."

Indeed. Bandera facilitated the Germans in their genocidal intentions concerning Ukrainians. Stalin was the most effective opponent of the Nazi intention to exterminate Ukrainians.

"Unlike these two conquest-crazed superpowers, Bandera wanted no take care of his own land."

And if had been up to Bandera alone, there would now be no Ukrainians in Ukraine.

"I consider the Brest parade an asset to WW II history. You’ll never find it in Soviet history books and documentaries."

I consider your reference to it showing a pathetic effort to resist understanding that it was Stalin saved Ukrainians from extermination at the hands of the Nazis, and not Bandera.

"It shows how Hitler and Stalin courted and accomodated each other before they came to blows, killing millions of people."

You don't know much about Stalin's attempt to form "The Grand Alliance" from 1934-1939, do you.

Taras said...

Stalin killed at least 3 million Ukrainians during the Holodomor and at least 7 million during WW II. (That’s not to mention the purges and the Gulag.)

What Grand Alliance are you talking about?

Fact: Stalin helped Germany build its army and allied himself with Hitler under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.

Theory: Stalin wanted to use Hitler as the “Icebreaker of the Revolution” who would facilitate the Soviet conquest of war-ravaged bourgeois Europe.

Fact: Stalin ended up using at least 20 million Soviet lives to fight Hitler.

Now that’s horrendous.

Without Ukraine, there would have been no USSR in the first place.

And without Stalin, there would have been no WW II as we know it.

rkka said...

"Stalin killed at least 3 million Ukrainians during the Holodomor"

Really? Then why was the Red Army's grain reserves distributed for famine relief?

"and at least 7 million during WW II."

Hitler killed those, with Bandera's help.



"What Grand Alliance are you talking about?"

Boy, you are clueless. The one that won the Second World War.

"Fact: Stalin helped Germany build its army"

Weimar Germany, not Nazi Germany. Big difference.

"and allied himself with Hitler under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact."

Hitler didn't think it was an alliance. Neither did Stalin. Why should you?

"Theory: Stalin wanted to use Hitler as the “Icebreaker of the Revolution” who would facilitate the Soviet conquest of war-ravaged bourgeois Europe."

Then why did he make an alliance with France and Czechoslovakia in 1935, and why did he offer an alliance to Great Britain and France in April 1939?


"Fact: Stalin ended up using at least 20 million Soviet lives to fight Hitler."

False. The majority were civilians killed by Hitler. If Hitler had acted in the West with the same genocidal intentions he did in the East, WWII would have seen about that many civilian fatalities in the West too. In fact, the Soviet armed forces gave the Wehrmacht its first real resistance.

"Now that’s horrendous."

Indeed, Hitlers intentions were horrendous. And Bandera facilitated them. Stalin stopped them.

"Without Ukraine, there would have been no USSR in the first place.

And without Stalin, there would have been no WW II as we know it."

Indeed. Without Stalin, Hitler would have won continental Europe and exterminated the Ukrainians.

With Bandera's help...

Taras said...

Famine relief? You mean those NKVD barrier troops that ensured death by hunger?

Data from Soviet censuses shows Ukrainians declining by 3 million and Russians growing by 22 million from 1926 to 1939.

Bandera neither helped Weimar>Nazi Germany build its army nor did he start WW II nor did he conquer other countries.

After two years of Sovietization — which included massacres and mass deportations — many western Ukrainians began viewing Hitler as the lesser of two evils.

And so did Bandera of the OUN-B, recruited by the Abwehr. On June 30, 1941, Bandera declared an independent Ukrainian state, allied with Nazi Germany, and ended up arrested on July 5, 1941.

As the Germans marched on Moscow, Stalin tried to approach Hitler (via Bulgarian ambassador Ivan Stamenov) about the possibility of ceding Ukraine and the Baltics.

You mentioned “Stalin's attempt to form ‘The Grand Alliance’ from 1934-1939.” For the record, Stalin had formed only one pre-WW II alliance: the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact (1939).

Bottom line, Stalin fed, and then fought, Hitler — at the expense of 20 million Soviet lives. By contrast, Bandera and the UPA fought alongside Hitler and then fought both Hitler and Stalin.

I respect cannon fodder RKKA soldiers who fought and died for their native land. They won their war in 1945. They did it despite, not because of, Stalin.

I equally respect UPA soldiers who fought and died for theirs. They won their war in 1991. Well, in many respects, the struggle for Ukraine’s independence continues.

I don’t respect Stalin. This thread is closed.