Ukraine: The Anti-Maidan Begins

It was predicted that the regime in Kiev would not last long, and that almost immediately there would be a backlash. First, opposition would come from eastern Ukraine where Ukrainians stand by their nation’s long historical, linguistic, cultural, economic, and strategic ties to Russia. Then opposition would come from western Ukraine, where people, despite their perceived anti-Russian sentiments and initial support for the “Euromaidan” protests, would find the corrupt client regime in Kiev intolerable as it integrated the nation into the EU while imposing IMF-engineered austerity measures already spreading socioeconomic chaos across the rest of Europe.

It was also predicted that the regime in Kiev, backed by the US and EU, would use the pretext of “war with Russia” to arm itself against the inevitable uprising to come.

It now appears that the “anti-Maidan” has begun, and that the military backing by NATO will be mobilized against fellow Ukrainians much sooner than expected.

With Crimea now beginning its integration with Russia, others in eastern Ukraine see a window of opportunity to escape out from beneath the regime in Kiev before it is able to consolidate its power and stamp out resistance to its inevitably disastrous policies. Protesters have been gathering in key cities across eastern Ukraine, while armed militias begin digging in against Kiev’s overt threats and now demonstrably preparations to carry out violence.  CNN would report in their article, “Ukraine unrest will be resolved by force or talks in 48 hours, minister says,” that:

Ukrainian acting Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said Wednesday that the separatist protests in Ukraine’s eastern region would be resolved within 48 hours — either through negotiations or the use of force. 

The Guardian in its article, “Armed pro-Russian protesters seize city in eastern Ukraine,” describes multiple cities being taken over by Ukrainians opposed to the regime in Kiev. While the Guardian continues to spin the narrative that Russia is “annexing” eastern Ukraine like it did Crimea – this sidesteps the reality that Crimea voted overwhelmingly (93% according to the BBC) to voluntarily declare independence from Kiev, and integrate with Russia. Claims that Russian troops have “invaded” Ukraine, intentionally omit that Russian troops, per long standing treaties, have been stationed in Ukrainian territory for decades.

Despite the referendum, the Western media still refers to the newly integrated peninsula as “Russian-occupied Crimea.”

Who are Ukrainians Fleeing via Pro-Russian Movement? 

Another crucial aspect omitted or blatantly covered up by the Western media is the very nature of the regime that recently seized power in Kiev at the height of the so-called “Euromaidan” protests. As growing public awareness has highlighted the ultra-right, literal Nazis that led “Euromaidan,” the Western media has succeeded in sowing enough doubt to keep many on the fence regarding the ongoing Ukrainian crisis.

Reports out of Ukraine come either from pro-Western or pro-Russian sources, leaving objective observers with little to work with. However, by examining the political leaders of the current regime in Kiev, through the very Western sources now defending them, one can easily identify the racism, bigotry, Nazism, fascism, and violence that millions of Ukrainians are all too familiar with – familiar with enough to seize the opportunity to seek protection within and forge closer ties to Russia.

When people across the West wring their hands regarding “Russian aggression” against the “Euromaidan” protesters and the resulting, unelected government, this is who they are defending:

1. Svoboda: So prominent was Svoboda during the “Euromaidan” protests, that the United States sent US Senator John McCain to take the stage with Svoboda leaders in Kiev at the height of the unrest. Surely then, one might expect Svoboda to represent values similar to those in America. However, Svoboda has a long history of carrying on the toxic ideology of Adolf Hitler’s Nazis, with party leaders citing Nazi propaganda, espousing hatred toward Jews and homosexuals, and either being involved in violence, or tied to armed militant groups that have been.

In a January 2014 Spiegel Online article titled, “‘Prepared to Die’: The Right Wing’s Role in Ukrainian Protests,” it described Svoboda in no uncertain terms (emphasis added):

The Svoboda party also has excellent ties to Europe, but they are different from the ones that Klischko might prefer. It is allied with France’s right-wing Front National and with the Italian neo-fascist group Fiamma Tricolore. But when it comes to the oppression of homosexuality, representative [Igor] Myroshnychenko is very close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, even if he does all he can to counter Moscow’s influence in his country.

 

It goes on to state (emphasis added):

Myroshnychenko was press spokesman for the Ukrainian national football team in the lead up to the 2008 European Championships, but he isn’t exactly cosmopolitan. He would even like to see foreign professional football players deported because they “change Ukraine’s ethnic map.”

There have been other, similar incidents. In a 2012 debate over the Ukrainian-born American actress Mila Kunis, he said that she wasn’t Ukrainian, rather she was a “Jewess.”Indeed, anti-Semitism is part of the extremist party’s platform; until 2004, they called themselves the Social-National Party of Ukraine in an intentional reference to Adolf Hitler’s National Socialist party. Just last summer, a prominent leader of party youth was distributing texts from Nazi propaganda head Joseph Goebbels translated into Ukrainian.

While many in the Western media try to portray Svoboda’s ultra-right, Neo-Nazi ideology as a part of its past, just during the “Euromaidan” protests this same Igor Myroshnychenko was an acting Svoboda MP, and very much involved in some of the most notorious incidents of the conflict.

In Channel 4′s (UK), “Ukraine: far-right extremists at core of ‘democracy’ protest,” it mentions both Svoboda MP Myroshnychenko as well as current Svoboda party leader Oleh Tyahnybok (emphasis added):

In December US senator John McCain travelled to Ukraine to offer his support to the opposition, appearing on stage with leaders of the three opposition parties leading the protests – including the far-right Svoboda party.

Svoboda is currently Ukraine’s fourth biggest party and holds 36 seats in parliament. It is also part of the Alliance of European National Movements, along with the BNP and Hungary’s Jobbik.

Svoboda leader Oleh Tyahnybok is one of the faces of the protests, appearing regularly along with opposition leader and former boxer Vitali Klitschko (see picture right) voicing opposition to Putin’s influence over the region.

 

However, Tyahnybok has provoked controversy in the past with his anti-Semitic claims that a “Moscow-Jewish mafia” controls Ukraine.

Continue reading