A post to mark January 27, 1945: The Red Army Liberation of Auschwitz
Any attempts to revise Russia’s contribution to achieving the victory over fascism de facto means justifying Nazi crimes and paves the way to reviving its deadly ideology. Horrible tragedies can happen again if we forget the lessons of history.
Thus spoke Vladimir Putin many times about the long, dangerous revision of history of recent years that seeks to equate communism with fascism, erase or minimize the Russian role in the WWII victory, or recast the short German-Soviet non-aggression pact as an “alliance.” The revisionists always fail to mention that the pact came after France and Britain refused Stalin’s request to form an alliance against Germany.
Over the past year, I’ve written about the causes of the tragedy in Ukraine which started decades ago. See posts tagged with “Ukraine” for more coverage of what is summarized briefly below.
In the late 1940s, the CIA started to use Ukrainian nationalist Nazi collaborators as a force that could destabilize the Soviet Union. After Ukraine won its independence in 1991, the project continued as a way to pull Ukraine toward the EU and into NATO. This culminated in 2014 in the US-sponsored covert overthrow of the elected government of Ukraine. By manipulating divisions within Ukraine and sponsoring protests (representing a minority of citizens) the US government support was key in assuring that the government fell in the Maidan coup. The Nazi militias were a minority of the protesters, but they were a key tool in the plan, and they proudly boasted of being the decisive factor that instigated violence and chased the legitimate president out of the country.
In recent years, the far-right groups have never had a majority in the legislature, but they were large and fearsome enough to intimidate Zelensky into doing nothing to protect the rights of ethnic Russian citizens in Ukraine. The Unties States’ interference in the internal affairs of Ukraine was a violation of national sovereignty just as egregious as violation of territorial integrity. This violation of international law and the UN Charter should have outraged the international community long before Russia was forced to react to put an end to the threat on its border and the genocidal civil war that was being perpetrated against ethnic Russians in Eastern Ukraine. About the ethnic Russian minority in Donbass, President Poroshenko said in 2014:
We will have jobs and they won’t. We will have retirement benefits and they won’t. We will have benefits for seniors and children, and they won’t. Our children will go to school and kindergarten, but theirs won’t. Their children will stay in basements [hiding from bombardment], so they won’t know how to do anything. And like this, precisely like this, we will win this war. (This speech appears at the beginning of Anne Laure Bonnel’s documentary film Donbass (2016)).
The United Nations and the vaunted “international community” did nothing to delegitimize this leader who expressed clearly stated genocidal intent. Citing the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court on Genocide (1998), bold text below indicates why President Poroshenko’s statement in 2014 should have been enough for the United Nations to take whatever actions necessary to delegitimize the Ukrainian government and prevent further atrocities from happening. Later, when the Minsk Accords were signed, the United Nations should have forced the signatories to uphold them. This was not done. Furthermore, two of the European signatories, French President Hollande and German Chancellor Merkel both suggested in December 2022 that the the Minsk Accords ended up being a way for Ukraine to build up its military in order to carry out the plan envisioned by President Poroshenko. There is much debate about whether their remarks were an admission of cynical intent or a statement of how things worked out in the end.
Russians are appalled at the rewriting of history in the West and the re-iteration in this century of the fascist project to fight Russia. Russian intervention into the sovereign territory of Ukraine was taken to demilitarize and de-Nazify a government that was guilty of genocide. I have never understood how it could be called an “unprovoked aggression” by those who have thrown their support behind a political formation in Ukraine that is so clearly the return of that misanthropic, “deadly ideology” of the early 20th century.
Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court – Article 6 (genocide), Adopted on 17 July 1998
For the purpose of this Statute, “genocide” means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
Article I: The Contracting Parties confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish.
Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.
Article III: The following acts shall be punishable:
(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;
(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;
(d) Attempt to commit genocide;
(e) Complicity in genocide.
The last word goes to Emilios George Ades Georgiades, January 23, 2023 (Facebook posting):
The best thing that could happen for Europe, even for Ukraine itself, is a quick military defeat of the Nazi regime in Kiev.
It is not what Washington would like, but then again Washington is only concerned with its own interests and does not lose any sleep over the economic and social disaster that is looming over its European “allies.”
Europe has already well and truly lost this war. Ukraine does not stand a chance of reversing the tide and any talk of pushing the Russians back from the territory they have captured, and continue to capture, is nothing more than a pipe dream.
Tens of thousands of lives have been lost and thousands continue to die every day this war is allowed to go on.
If Europe wishes to continue existing as an economic if not a major military power, it must withdraw its support for this futile endeavor. Without European participation, the US will have no option but to call it a day and count its blessings and ill-gotten gains.
Given time and political will, things can begin to return to the good old days when Europe was benefitting from cheap Russian fuel and was competitive and exported its own products to a new middle class in Russia flush with money.
The enemy of Europe and the West is not Russia. It never has been Russia. If the Europeans open their eyes, they will see who it really is that is standing between them and their prosperity.
It was not Russia that broke the peace in February 2022. That peace was broken eight years earlier. There had been thousands of casualties in this war, long before Russia was forced to get involved to put an end to the worst ethnic cleansing of the 21st century, carried out by a US-controlled Nazi regime in Ukraine.
Europe and the rest of the West are once again not on the right side of history. Time to correct that.
German tanks fighting Russian tanks in 2023
spells doomsday –
Thanks to the ”international community”
and the ”coalition of the willing”