In this blog post, we will quote from the DPA German news agency. Though today’s Germany of course is far from being identical with Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich, as we shall see, the DPA item about Ukraine has some unpleasant echos from the past.
Ukraine halts NATO accession planning
Mon, 05 Apr 2010 12:19:12 GMT
Kiev/Moscow – Ukraine‘s new government on Monday cancelled plans to work towards NATO membership, according to local media reports.
President Viktor Yanukovych, a pro-Russia politician inaugurated into office in February, revoked a 2006 executive order charging Ukraine‘s government with preparing the military for eventual membership of the Atlantic alliance.
Other Russia-friendly initiatives pushed by Yanukovych since becoming Ukraine’s president include … the cancellation of a Yushchenko executive order making Stepan Bandera, a World War II anti-Soviet partisan, an official Ukrainian hero.
The Russian government, of course, is far from being alone in regretting the honour bestowed on Stepan Bandera by Yushchenko. Eg, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre in the USA opposed that very strongly. Would DPA say that the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s opposition is supposedly a result of being “Russia-friendly”, excluding all possible other explanations?
By the way, the decision to annul the medal awarded to Bandera was not Yanukovych’s, but a local court’s.
Bandera was a terrorist responsible for the deaths of possibly hundreds of Ukrainians, Russians, and Jews, according to Kremlin historians.
I do not know which “Kremlin historians” DPA means, as they do not say so. However, these seem to be historians who estimate extremely conservatively, as the number of Jews, Ukrainians, Russians, or others killed by Bandera’s forces is estimated at thousands by the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, rather than “possibly hundreds”.
It seems that German news agency DPA suggests that Bandera, being an ally of Germany, even though it was then mass murderer Adolf Hitler’s Germany, can hardly have been all bad.
Most Ukrainians oppose the idea of joining NATO, which is frequently seen in the former Soviet republic as a former Cold War enemy, and an organisation responsible for conducting unlawful military operations in Serbia and Afghanistan.
Opinion on ethnic Ukrainian partisans fighting during World War II is more divided, with some supporting Moscow’s view that Bandera and his supporters were criminals, and others seeing them as fighters for Ukrainian independence.
Bandera and his supporters fought indeed for a sort of “independence” for Ukraine: a Ukraine allied to nazi Germany. That did not exclude that they fought for this with criminal means: mass murder of Jews etc.
By the way, it is rather strange that DPA calls Bandera’s men “partisans”, a word usually used for underground fighters against nazi occupation troops. As Bandera’s men were in the “Galicia” division of Adolf Hitler’s Waffen SS.
Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych warned on Monday that the Chernobyl nuclear reactor remains a serious threat to Europe, urging donors to stump up funds to secure the facility on the 24th anniversary of the world’s worst atomic accident: here.
Ukraine’s communists have challenged the government to hold a national referendum on further co-operation with the US-dominated International Monetary Fund: here.
The counter-revolution in the USSR has allowed a few people the “freedom” to exploit workers in order to become millionaires, but has diminished workers’ rights, as we can see from the following appeal from Ukrainian workers for solidarity from abroad: here.