Ukraine Parliament Cheers Nazi Collaborator

Even neighboring Poland, a staunch ally of Kiev in the ongoing war with Russia, has criticized the Verkhovna Rada’s Jan. 1 celebration of the birthday of Stepan Bandera. 

Jan. 1, 2015. Torchlight procession in honor of the 106 anniversary of the birthday of Stepan Bandera, Kiev. (All-Ukrainian Union CC BY 3.0, Wikimedia Commons)

By  Peoples Dispatch

Ukraine’s support for neo-Nazi groups and its attempts to officially recognize pro-Nazi legions and Nazi collaborators from World War II have been steadfastly criticized by communists and other anti-fascist groups in the region.

Kiev’s supporters in Europe and North America have, until now,  maintained a complicit silence about these maneuvers. However, the latest gesture by the Ukrainian parliament — cheering on the birthday of the Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera — has drawn sharp criticism even from neighboring Poland, its staunch ally in the ongoing war with Russia. 

On Jan. 1, a post celebrating the 114th birthday of Stepan Bandera — notorious Ukrainian far-right leader and  World War II Nazi collaborator — was tweeted from the official handle of the Verkhovna Rada, the Ukrainian parliament.

According to reports, the tweet contained “a quote from Stepan Bandera and a photo of the Ukrainian Armed Forces chief, General Valery Zaluzhny, with a large portrait of the Nazi collaborator in the background.” After receiving a significant amount of criticism, it was later deleted from the twitter handle of Verkhovna Rada.

The tweet triggered spontaneous outrage from Poland, otherwise a staunch supporter of Kiev and President Volodymyr Zelensky. On Jan. 2, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki denounced the glorification of Stepan Bandera by the Ukrainian parliament.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, right, visiting Kiev on April 19, 2022.
(Kancelaria Premiera, Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

While addressing the media on Jan. 2, Morawiecki stated, as per RT, that “no nuances were possible that would make the continued glorification of Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera palatable,” adding that Bandera’s nationalists had committed “terrible crimes.” He is reported to have said that Poland would not tolerate the minimization of those crimes.

On the same day, Israel’s Haaretz newspaper also slammed Ukrainian authorities for celebrating and quoting an anti-Semitic Nazi collaborator.

Virulent Decommunization

Andriy Beletsky, commanding officer of the special Ukrainian neo-Nazi police regiment Azov, with volunteers in 2014. (My News24, CC BY 3.0, Wikimedia Commons)

Successive governments that came into power in Ukraine following the anti-Russian Euromaidan coup of 2014 have initiated a virulent campaign of decommunization.

They have also attempted to normalize support for far-right Ukrainian nationalist legions, and their leaders, from World War II, who were Nazi collaborators and mass murderers of Jews, people in Poland and fellow Ukrainians.

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Neo-Nazi groups like Right Sector and the Azov Battalion have been active in post-Maidan Ukraine and continue to be active belligerents in the ongoing Ukraine-Russia war. 

[Related: On the Influence of Neo-Nazism in Ukraine]

Bandera was the leader of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), a far-right, ultra-nationalist Ukrainian militant group that collaborated with Nazis during World War II, fought against the Soviets and perpetrated mass murders of ethnic Jews, Poles and pro-Soviet Ukrainians. After World War II, Bandera was settled in West Germany and cooperated with Western intelligence services including MI6 in its anti-Soviet activities. 

In 2010, Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko awarded Bandera with the posthumous title of “Hero of Ukraine” — in order to please hyper-nationalist sections in the country. Even this courted criticism from the EU, Poland, Israel, Russia and many other countries.

Later, the decision to confer the award on Bandera was annulled by President Viktor Yanukovych. In the aftermath of the Euromaidan coup of 2014, which ousted the pro-Russia Yanukovych, right-wing militias that consider Bandera a hero were given free rein in the country and support from the governments of Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelensky. Since then, Ukrainian nationalists have regularly marked Bandera’s birthday on Jan. 1 with torch-lit marches and demonstrations.

On Jan. 4, Roman Kononenko from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF) told Peoples Dispatch that

“if someone today is not yet able to draw an elementary parallel between accusations against Ukraine that it has become a neo-Nazi state, and state-level glorification in this country of the Nazi accomplice and bloody executioner of the peoples Stepan Bandera, then this person is either criminally stupid or deliberately turns a blind eye to obvious things.”

This article is from Peoples Dispatch.

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23 comments for “Ukraine Parliament Cheers Nazi Collaborator

  1. Realist
    January 8, 2023 at 16:28

    If all the accounts of the execution of Russian POW’s, ethnic Russians trapped on the wrong side of the lines in the military skirmishes and subsequently murdered by Ukie zealots, and ethnic Russians merely being “offed” and/or tortured by their Ukie neighbors turn out to be true during the investigations that surely must follow after the formal waging of war is over, the Zelensky regime will go down in history found just as guilty of crimes against humanity as was that Bandera bunch over 75 years ago. May they receive their just punishments before sneaking off, wriggling free or dying of old age, as so many WWII Nazis did.

  2. Jack Rauber
    January 7, 2023 at 20:01

    The victors tell the story

  3. Vera Gottlieb
    January 7, 2023 at 10:41

    And for this Western tax payers’ monies are being used? Of course, we know how Hitler was supported by American oil companies until such day when US finally entered WW 2.

  4. lidia
    January 7, 2023 at 08:55

    Anticommunism means Nazism. Polish anticommunists and Zionist colonizers of Palestine are the same as Banderites, o more no less.

    January 7, 2023 at 06:43

    comportamento criminale di un paese che da valore al crimine nazista! L’assurdo sostegno occidentale ad un governo che non dovrebbe avere riconoscimento dai paesi che si dichiarano antifascisti e democratici!

  6. Donald Duck
    January 7, 2023 at 03:51

    It hardly comes as a surprise that the Poles are aggrieved at the adulation of Bandera/Shukhevych duo. These two gentlemen were the commanders of Nachtigall Battalion, a Hauptmann of the German Schutzmannschaft 201 auxiliary police battalion, and Shukhevych military leader of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), and one of the perpetrators – along with Bandera – of the Galicia-Volhynia massacres of approximately 100,000 Poles in 1943. They they do seem to have a penchant for killing people – or ‘liquidating’ anyone in their jargon.

    Western Ukraine has always been a political breeding ground for the likes of these two gentlemen mentioned above. The Russians would do very well to keep to their (eastern) side of the Dnieper.

  7. Francis Lee
    January 7, 2023 at 03:29

    Don’t leave out Roman Shukhevych – commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA ) and the other half of of the Bandera duo. Bandera was in control of the political wing (OUN-B).

    Roman-Taras Yosypovych Shukhevych, was a Ukrainian nationalist, one of the commanders of Nachtigall Battalion, a Hauptmann of the German Schutzmannschaft 201 auxiliary police battalion, a military leader of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, and one of the perpetrators of the Galicia-Volhynia massacres of approximately 100,000 Poles.

      January 7, 2023 at 08:35

      He wasn’t “left out.” It wasn’t his birthday and the Rada didn’t honor him with a tweet.

  8. Jeff Harrison
    January 6, 2023 at 19:40

    The US seems to always ally itself with the lowest scum in any society that we seek to overthrow. I’ve always thought that was because that was the only part of the society that wanted the government overthrown,…..

    • Ingamarie
      January 7, 2023 at 11:19

      In which case, perhaps a majority of people didn’t want the government overthrown……..American secret operative types wanted the government overthrown. Which could lead one to the conclusion that there might be an international right wing organization at work in the world………led by American CIA types.

  9. shmutzoid
    January 6, 2023 at 19:05

    Gee, I wonder if there’re any reports of the Rada celebrating Ukraine’s national hero and favorite Nazi, Stefan Bandera. Ha ha.

    What passes for ‘news’ in MSM might as well be named ‘Pentagon Press Office’. The propaganda is so pervasive, with the general population so immersed in it, the ability to suss out the alternate reality spoon-fed to us everyday by corporate media becomes blunted.
    ….. It’s like the air we breathe. We don’t notice it – it’s just THERE.

    Prior to Feb.24, 2022, the subject of neo-Nazism in Ukraine was not uncommon in MSM. After that date the subject was DISAPPEARED. Azoz, Right Sector and the rest of those neo-Nazi groups have been re-branded as ‘freedom fighters’ and ‘celebrated fighters’ (NY Times). Total whitewash of the character and nature of what’s real.

    The canard thrown out there by proponents of this war on Russia is ——-> “Well, Azov and similar groups have less than 5% representation in the Ukraine Rada, so, their influence is really negligible” That’s the biggest red herring going. Those groups have been fully integrated in to Ukraine’s National Guard. The entire political class there is intimidated by the blood lust of Azov, etc. Even Zelensky. ——-> In a well-documented confrontation six months after he took office, Zelensky was put in his place by Azov when he pleaded with them to stop the slaughter of Russian-speaking people of Donbas. After that meeting we NEWVER heard Zelensky talk of finding peace with Russia, the platform he campaigned on. Nazi influence in Ukraine is NOT to be minimized.

    Only a few media outlets present issues and facts on the ground with proper context and analysis. There may be a few more, but, my favs are: CN…….wsws……thegrayzone

    • Ingamarie
      January 7, 2023 at 11:24

      Well said…………I oppose all war, but only heard the vaguest rumours about the Azov battalion…and nothing much before the war started.

      Perhaps its time to talk about the War against Communism as being a right wing, Nazi/fascist kind of covert operation….which goes on, even now that there is very little actual communism left in the world.

      Without someone or something to hate, where would the right wing be? What would their goals and purposes be? Still…….they do scare a lot of leaders, and the majority of the public into passive acquiescence.

  10. Allan Millard
    January 6, 2023 at 18:03

    Chrystia Freeland, Deputy Prime Minister of Canada, is probably the strongest voice in Canada behind Canada’s misguided policy towards the war in Ukraine. That one of her Ukrainian grandparents was a Nazi collaborator during WW2 is not a secret but is also not the issue. The issue is that she has tried to portray that her grandparent was some sort of fighter for Ukrainian freedom and democracy.

    Two parts of “misguided” are (1) that Canada has for several years had a military mission in Ukraine – said to be in western Ukraine – training Ukrainian troops but apparently no-one has ever let it be known whether the trainees are part of Right Sektor or the Askiv Brigade, and (2) that Canada firmly supports the unconditional return of all lost territories in Ukraine, a policy that guarantees no diplomatic solution and condemns Ukraine to an endless and ghastly war.

    A peculiar blind spot for a Canadian is the failure to recognize any aspirations of the people in Luhansk and Donetsk for independence or at least some degree of local autonomy given Canada’s experience with separatists in Quebec (and now Alberta). One would think a senior Minister in a federal state would have some understanding of how ethnic/language minorities might have a case in Ukraine.

    • James White
      January 7, 2023 at 08:57

      The blind spot for Canadians is more universal. Certainly it is the same the same blind spot in the U.S. and most of Europe. Those people have been hypnotized by psychological operations of the CIA, FBI, DNC, big Tech and legacy Media companies. And you raise the pertinent question: Where are the dissenting voices among our elected officials. I have never seen people more fearful of offering so much as an opinion about the real Zelensky and the true history of the Russia-centric Donbas region. But the daily pro-Ukraine propaganda from the lying press is endless. Note that the number of Ukrainian combatants deaths are never mentioned. Only Russians are dying in this war if the press is to be believed. Some day soon, all of the lies will suddenly collapse. The media will never admit that it lied every day throughout the war. It will simply move on to the next Psy-Ops theatre..

    • Ingamarie
      January 7, 2023 at 11:29

      Exactly. Which makes it more clear that whether the party in power is Liberal or Conservative……..right wing policies have a secure seat at the table…..and msm compliance makes it hard for the general public to see the inherent fascism in many of our foreign policy decisions.

      The Juan Guido farce is a recent case in point. No mention of how Maduro won the election with a large majority, or of how many observers were there from Canada….Trudeau puts on bold face, and makes an international ass of himself recognizing a selfie taking nobody as the rightful president of Venezuala, and the guy who won a democratic election, with a majority Trudeau can only dream of, the dictator.

      Shameful, embarrassing and a bit scary…..Canada’s limp bending to American will, as the defining feature of our ‘foreign policy’.

    • Common Sense
      January 7, 2023 at 16:24

      Looks like at some point in the past, real evil got hold of Canada’s “top” administrations.

      Such a petty!

  11. robert e williamson jr
    January 6, 2023 at 17:46

    The predecessors of the neocon’s and their doctrine we fight today collaborated with Nazis also. From WWII to evidently today.

    I’ll continue to say this situation could have been handled in a much different fashion.

    Guy I’m sure Chrystia is still riding the gravy train.

    Thanks CN

  12. Rob Roy
    January 6, 2023 at 17:22

    Most people in my circle of relatives and friends are “criminally stupid.” Zelensky is a criminal, but he’s seen as a hero. Baffling. CIA, WhiteHouse, MIC, Wall Street, weapons makers propaganda program is complete with Americans all thinking the same thing because they see only programmed dominant narrative designed to implant that narrative. Sickening.

    • Tedder
      January 8, 2023 at 14:27

      I fear the compliance with “programmed dominant narrative designed to implant that narrative” is international, at least among the Anglosphere, including vassals like Japan.

  13. Guy St Hilaire
    January 6, 2023 at 16:14

    And where is Chrystia Freeland in all this , from Canada’s political scene ? Samo …

    • Reynold Reimer
      January 7, 2023 at 13:13

      I suspect she’s fundraising from the right wing faction of Ukrainian immigrants in Canada.

  14. David Raphael
    January 6, 2023 at 15:34

    It’s good to see that Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials denounced the Parliament’s Tweet. Keep in mind that the US House of Representatives is dominated by right-wing extremists and fascist sympathizers.

  15. Michael Perry
    January 6, 2023 at 15:15

    America could care less about how many UKR’s are killed for the “.. dinero ..”
    In fact, it was of the plan, that is to make them hungry, and broke..

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