The Jewish Role In The Bolshevik Revolution And Russia’s Early Soviet Regime

Soviet Union flag photo

In the night of July 16-17, 1918, a squad of Bolshevik secret police murdered Russia’s last emperor, Tsar Nicholas II, along with his wife, Tsaritsa Alexandra, their 14-year-old son, Tsarevich Alexis, and their four daughters. They were cut down in a hail of gunfire in a half-cellar room of the house in Ekaterinburg, a city in the Ural mountain region, where they were being held prisoner. The daughters were finished off with bayonets. To prevent a cult for the dead Tsar, the bodies were carted away to the countryside and hastily buried in a secret grave.

Bolshevik authorities at first reported that the Romanov emperor had been shot after the discovery of a plot to liberate him. For some time the deaths of the Empress and the children were kept secret. Soviet historians claimed for many years that local Bolsheviks had acted on their own in carrying out the killings, and that Lenin, founder of the Soviet state, had nothing to do with the crime.

In 1990, Moscow playwright and historian Edvard Radzinsky announced the result of his detailed investigation into the murders. He unearthed the reminiscences of Lenin’s bodyguard, Alexei Akimov, who recounted how he personally delivered Lenin’s execution order to the telegraph office. The telegram was also signed by Soviet government chief Yakov Sverdlov. Akimov had saved the original telegraph tape as a record of the secret order.1

Radzinsky’s research confirmed what earlier evidence had already indicated. Leon Trotsky — one of Lenin’s closest colleagues — had revealed years earlier that Lenin and Sverdlov had together made the decision to put the Tsar and his family to death. Recalling a conversation in 1918, Trotsky wrote:2

My next visit to Moscow took place after the [temporary] fall of Ekaterinburg [to anti-Communist forces]. Speaking with Sverdlov, I asked in passing: “Oh yes, and where is the Tsar?”

“Finished,” he replied. “He has been shot.”

“And where is the family?”

“The family along with him.”

“All of them?,” I asked, apparently with a trace of surprise.

“All of them,” replied Sverdlov. “What about it?” He was waiting to see my reaction. I made no reply.

“And who made the decision?,” I asked.

“We decided it here. Ilyich [Lenin] believed that we shouldn’t leave the Whites a live banner to rally around, especially under the present difficult circumstances.”

I asked no further questions and considered the matter closed.

Recent research and investigation by Radzinsky and others also corroborates the account provided years earlier by Robert Wilton, correspondent of the London Times in Russia for 17 years. His account, The Last Days of the Romanovs – originally published in 1920, and reissued in 1993 by the Institute for Historical Review — is based in large part on the findings of a detailed investigation carried out in 1919 by Nikolai Sokolov under the authority of “White” (anti-Communist) leader Alexander Kolchak. Wilton’s book remains one of the most accurate and complete accounts of the murder of Russia’s imperial family.3

A solid understanding of history has long been the best guide to comprehending the present and anticipating the future. Accordingly, people are most interested in historical questions during times of crisis, when the future seems most uncertain. With the collapse of Communist rule in the Soviet Union, 1989-1991, and as Russians struggle to build a new order on the ruins of the old, historical issues have become very topical. For example, many ask: How did the Bolsheviks, a small movement guided by the teachings of German-Jewish social philosopher Karl Marx, succeed in taking control of Russia and imposing a cruel and despotic regime on its people?

In recent years, Jews around the world have been voicing anxious concern over the specter of anti-Semitism in the lands of the former Soviet Union. In this new and uncertain era, we are told, suppressed feelings of hatred and rage against Jews are once again being expressed. According to one public opinion survey conducted in 1991, for example, most Russians wanted all Jews to leave the country.4 But precisely why is anti-Jewish sentiment so widespread among the peoples of the former Soviet Union? Why do so many Russians, Ukrainians, Lithuanians and others blame “the Jews” for so much misfortune?

A Taboo Subject

Although officially Jews have never made up more than five percent of the country’s total population,5 they played a highly disproportionate and probably decisive role in the infant Bolshevik regime, effectively dominating the Soviet government during its early years. Soviet historians, along with most of their colleagues in the West, for decades preferred to ignore this subject. The facts, though, cannot be denied.

With the notable exception of Lenin (Vladimir Ulyanov), most of the leading Communists who took control of Russia in 1917-20 were Jews. Leon Trotsky (Lev Bronstein) headed the Red Army and, for a time, was chief of Soviet foreign affairs. Yakov Sverdlov (Solomon) was both the Bolshevik party’s executive secretary and — as chairman of the Central Executive Committee — head of the Soviet government. Grigori Zinoviev (Radomyslsky) headed the Communist International (Comintern), the central agency for spreading revolution in foreign countries. Other prominent Jews included press commissar Karl Radek (Sobelsohn), foreign affairs commissar Maxim Litvinov (Wallach), Lev Kamenev (Rosenfeld) and Moisei Uritsky.6

Lenin himself was of mostly Russian and Kalmuck ancestry, but he was also one-quarter Jewish. His maternal grandfather, Israel (Alexander) Blank, was a Ukrainian Jew who was later baptized into the Russian Orthodox Church.7

A thorough-going internationalist, Lenin viewed ethnic or cultural loyalties with contempt. He had little regard for his own countrymen. “An intelligent Russian,” he once remarked, “is almost always a Jew or someone with Jewish blood in his veins.”8

Critical Meetings

In the Communist seizure of power in Russia, the Jewish role was probably critical.

Two weeks prior to the Bolshevik “October Revolution” of 1917, Lenin convened a top secret meeting in St. Petersburg (Petrograd) at which the key leaders of the Bolshevik party’s Central Committee made the fateful decision to seize power in a violent takeover. Of the twelve persons who took part in this decisive gathering, there were four Russians (including Lenin), one Georgian (Stalin), one Pole (Dzerzhinsky), and six Jews.9

To direct the takeover, a seven-man “Political Bureau” was chosen. It consisted of two Russians (Lenin and Bubnov), one Georgian (Stalin), and four Jews (Trotsky, Sokolnikov, Zinoviev, and Kamenev).10 Meanwhile, the Petersburg (Petrograd) Soviet — whose chairman was Trotsky — established an 18-member “Military Revolutionary Committee” to actually carry out the seizure of power. It included eight (or nine) Russians, one Ukrainian, one Pole, one Caucasian, and six Jews.11 Finally, to supervise the organization of the uprising, the Bolshevik Central Committee established a five-man “Revolutionary Military Center” as the Party’s operations command. It consisted of one Russian (Bubnov), one Georgian (Stalin), one Pole (Dzerzhinsky), and two Jews (Sverdlov and Uritsky).12

Contemporary Voices of Warning

Well-informed observers, both inside and outside of Russia, took note at the time of the crucial Jewish role in Bolshevism. Winston Churchill, for one, warned in an article published in the February 8, 1920, issue of the London Illustrated Sunday Herald that Bolshevism is a “worldwide conspiracy for the overthrow of civilization and for the reconstitution of society on the basis of arrested development, of envious malevolence, and impossible equality.” The eminent British political leader and historian went on to write:13

There is no need to exaggerate the part played in the creation of Bolshevism and in the actual bringing about of the Russian Revolution by these international and for the most part atheistical Jews. It is certainly a very great one; it probably outweighs all others. With the notable exception of Lenin, the majority of the leading figures are Jews. Moreover, the principal inspiration and driving power comes from the Jewish leaders. Thus Tchitcherin, a pure Russian, is eclipsed by his nominal subordinate, Litvinoff, and the influence of Russians like Bukharin or Lunacharski cannot be compared with the power of Trotsky, or of Zinovieff, the Dictator of the Red Citadel (Petrograd), or of Krassin or Radek — all Jews. In the Soviet institutions the predominance of Jews is even more astonishing. And the prominent, if not indeed the principal, part in the system of terrorism applied by the Extraordinary Commissions for Combatting Counter-Revolution [the Cheka] has been taken by Jews, and in some notable cases by Jewesses.

Needless to say, the most intense passions of revenge have been excited in the breasts of the Russian people.

David R. Francis, United States ambassador in Russia, warned in a January 1918 dispatch to Washington: “The Bolshevik leaders here, most of whom are Jews and 90 percent of whom are returned exiles, care little for Russia or any other country but are internationalists and they are trying to start a worldwide social revolution.”14

The Netherlands’ ambassador in Russia, Oudendyke, made much the same point a few months later: “Unless Bolshevism is nipped in the bud immediately, it is bound to spread in one form or another over Europe and the whole world as it is organized and worked by Jews who have no nationality, and whose one object is to destroy for their own ends the existing order of things.”15

“The Bolshevik Revolution,” declared a leading American Jewish community paper in 1920, “was largely the product of Jewish thinking, Jewish discontent, Jewish effort to reconstruct.”16

As an expression of its radically anti-nationalist character, the fledgling Soviet government issued a decree a few months after taking power that made anti-Semitism a crime in Russia. The new Communist regime thus became the first in the world to severely punish all expressions of anti-Jewish sentiment.17 Soviet officials apparently regarded such measures as indispensable. Based on careful observation during a lengthy stay in Russia, American-Jewish scholar Frank Golder reported in 1925 that “because so many of the Soviet leaders are Jews anti-Semitism is gaining [in Russia], particularly in the army [and] among the old and new intelligentsia who are being crowded for positions by the sons of Israel.”18

Historians’ Views

Summing up the situation at that time, Israeli historian Louis Rapoport writes:19

Immediately after the [Bolshevik] Revolution, many Jews were euphoric over their high representation in the new government. Lenin’s first Politburo was dominated by men of Jewish origins.

Under Lenin, Jews became involved in all aspects of the Revolution, including its dirtiest work. Despite the Communists’ vows to eradicate anti-Semitism, it spread rapidly after the Revolution — partly because of the prominence of so many Jews in the Soviet administration, as well as in the traumatic, inhuman Sovietization drives that followed. Historian Salo Baron has noted that an immensely disproportionate number of Jews joined the new Bolshevik secret police, the Cheka And many of those who fell afoul of the Cheka would be shot by Jewish investigators.

The collective leadership that emerged in Lenin’s dying days was headed by the Jew Zinoviev, a loquacious, mean-spirited, curly-haired Adonis whose vanity knew no bounds.

“Anyone who had the misfortune to fall into the hands of the Cheka,” wrote Jewish historian Leonard Schapiro, “stood a very good chance of finding himself confronted with, and possibly shot by, a Jewish investigator.”20 In Ukraine, “Jews made up nearly 80 percent of the rank-and-file Cheka agents,” reports W. Bruce Lincoln, an American professor of Russian history.21 (Beginning as the Cheka, or Vecheka) the Soviet secret police was later known as the GPU, OGPU, NKVD, MVD and KGB.)

In light of all this, it should not be surprising that Yakov M. Yurovksy, the leader of the Bolshevik squad that carried out the murder of the Tsar and his family, was Jewish, as was Sverdlov, the Soviet chief who co-signed Lenin’s execution order.22

Igor Shafarevich, a Russian mathematician of world stature, has sharply criticized the Jewish role in bringing down the Romanov monarchy and establishing Communist rule in his country. Shafarevich was a leading dissident during the final decades of Soviet rule. A prominent human rights activist, he was a founding member of the Committee on the Defense of Human Rights in the USSR.

In Russophobia, a book written ten years before the collapse of Communist rule, he noted that Jews were “amazingly” numerous among the personnel of the Bolshevik secret police. The characteristic Jewishness of the Bolshevik executioners, Shafarevich went on, is most conspicuous in the execution of Nicholas II:23

This ritual action symbolized the end of centuries of Russian history, so that it can be compared only to the execution of Charles I in England or Louis XVI in France. It would seem that representatives of an insignificant ethnic minority should keep as far as possible from this painful action, which would reverberate in all history. Yet what names do we meet? The execution was personally overseen by Yakov Yurovsky who shot the Tsar; the president of the local Soviet was Beloborodov (Vaisbart); the person responsible for the general administration in Ekaterinburg was Shaya Goloshchekin. To round out the picture, on the wall of the room where the execution took place was a distich from a poem by Heine (written in German) about King Balthazar, who offended Jehovah and was killed for the offense.

In his 1920 book, British veteran journalist Robert Wilton offered a similarly harsh assessment:24

The whole record of Bolshevism in Russia is indelibly impressed with the stamp of alien invasion. The murder of the Tsar, deliberately planned by the Jew Sverdlov (who came to Russia as a paid agent of Germany) and carried out by the Jews Goloshchekin, Syromolotov, Safarov, Voikov and Yurovsky, is the act not of the Russian people, but of this hostile invader.

In the struggle for power that followed Lenin’s death in 1924, Stalin emerged victorious over his rivals, eventually succeeding in putting to death nearly every one of the most prominent early Bolsheviks leaders – including Trotsky, Zinoviev, Radek, and Kamenev. With the passage of time, and particularly after 1928, the Jewish role in the top leadership of the Soviet state and its Communist party diminished markedly.

Put To Death Without Trial

For a few months after taking power, Bolshevik leaders considered bringing “Nicholas Romanov” before a “Revolutionary Tribunal” that would publicize his “crimes against the people” before sentencing him to death. Historical precedent existed for this. Two European monarchs had lost their lives as a consequence of revolutionary upheaval: England’s Charles I was beheaded in 1649, and France’s Louis XVI was guillotined in 1793.

In these cases, the king was put to death after a lengthy public trial, during which he was allowed to present arguments in his defense. Nicholas II, though, was neither charged nor tried. He was secretly put to death – along with his family and staff — in the dead of night, in an act that resembled more a gangster-style massacre than a formal execution.

Why did Lenin and Sverdlov abandon plans for a show trial of the former Tsar? In Wilton’s view, Nicholas and his family were murdered because the Bolshevik rulers knew quite well that they lacked genuine popular support, and rightly feared that the Russian people would never approve killing the Tsar, regardless of pretexts and legalistic formalities.

For his part, Trotsky defended the massacre as a useful and even necessary measure. He wrote:25

The decision [to kill the imperial family] was not only expedient but necessary. The severity of this punishment showed everyone that we would continue to fight on mercilessly, stopping at nothing. The execution of the Tsar’s family was needed not only in order to frighten, horrify, and instill a sense of hopelessness in the enemy but also to shake up our own ranks, to show that there was no turning back, that ahead lay either total victory or total doom. This Lenin sensed well.

Historical Context

In the years leading up to the 1917 revolution, Jews were disproportionately represented in all of Russia’s subversive leftist parties.26 Jewish hatred of the Tsarist regime had a basis in objective conditions. Of the leading European powers of the day, imperial Russia was the most institutionally conservative and anti-Jewish. For example, Jews were normally not permitted to reside outside a large area in the west of the Empire known as the “Pale of Settlement.”27

However understandable, and perhaps even defensible, Jewish hostility toward the imperial regime may have been, the remarkable Jewish role in the vastly more despotic Soviet regime is less easy to justify. In a recently published book about the Jews in Russia during the 20th century, Russian-born Jewish writer Sonya Margolina goes so far as to call the Jewish role in supporting the Bolshevik regime the “historic sin of the Jews.”28 She points, for example, to the prominent role of Jews as commandants of Soviet Gulag concentration and labor camps, and the role of Jewish Communists in the systematic destruction of Russian churches. Moreover, she goes on, “The Jews of the entire world supported Soviet power, and remained silent in the face of any criticism from the opposition.” In light of this record, Margolina offers a grim prediction:

The exaggeratedly enthusiastic participation of the Jewish Bolsheviks in the subjugation and destruction of Russia is a sin that will be avenged Soviet power will be equated with Jewish power, and the furious hatred against the Bolsheviks will become hatred against Jews.

If the past is any indication, it is unlikely that many Russians will seek the revenge that Margolina prophecies. Anyway, to blame “the Jews” for the horrors of Communism seems no more justifiable than to blame “white people” for Negro slavery, or “the Germans” for the Second World War or “the Holocaust.”

Words of Grim Portent

Nicholas and his family are only the best known of countless victims of a regime that openly proclaimed its ruthless purpose. A few weeks after the Ekaterinburg massacre, the newspaper of the fledgling Red Army declared:29

Without mercy, without sparing, we will kill our enemies by the scores of hundreds, let them be thousands, let them drown themselves in their own blood. For the blood of Lenin and Uritskii let there be floods of blood of the bourgeoisie — more blood, as much as possible.

Grigori Zinoviev, speaking at a meeting of Communists in September 1918, effectively pronounced a death sentence on ten million human beings: “We must carry along with us 90 million out of the 100 million of Soviet Russia’s inhabitants. As for the rest, we have nothing to say to them. They must be annihilated.”30

‘The Twenty Million’

As it turned out, the Soviet toll in human lives and suffering proved to be much higher than Zinoviev’s murderous rhetoric suggested. Rarely, if ever, has a regime taken the lives of so many of its own people.31

Citing newly-available Soviet KGB documents, historian Dmitri Volkogonov, head of a special Russian parliamentary commission, recently concluded that “from 1929 to 1952, 21.5 million [Soviet] people were repressed. Of these a third were shot, the rest sentenced to imprisonment, where many also died.”32

Olga Shatunovskaya, a member of the Soviet Commission of Party Control, and head of a special commission during the 1960s appointed by premier Khrushchev, has similarly concluded: “From January 1, 1935 to June 22, 1941, 19,840,000 enemies of the people were arrested. Of these, seven million were shot in prison, and a majority of the others died in camp.” These figures were also found in the papers of Politburo member Anastas Mikoyan.33

Robert Conquest, the distinguished specialist of Soviet history, recently summed up the grim record of Soviet “repression” of it own people:34

It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the post-1934 death toll was well over ten million. To this should be added the victims of the 1930-1933 famine, the kulak deportations, and other anti-peasant campaigns, amounting to another ten million plus. The total is thus in the range of what the Russians now refer to as ‘The Twenty Million’.”

A few other scholars have given significantly higher estimates.35

The Tsarist Era in Retrospect

With the dramatic collapse of Soviet rule, many Russians are taking a new and more respectful look at their country’s pre-Communist history, including the era of the last Romanov emperor. While the Soviets — along with many in the West — have stereotypically portrayed this era as little more than an age of arbitrary despotism, cruel suppression and mass poverty, the reality is rather different. While it is true that the power of the Tsar was absolute, that only a small minority had any significant political voice, and that the mass of the empire’s citizens were peasants, it is worth noting that Russians during the reign of Nicholas II had freedom of press, religion, assembly and association, protection of private property, and free labor unions. Sworn enemies of the regime, such as Lenin, were treated with remarkable leniency.36

During the decades prior to the outbreak of the First World War, the Russian economy was booming. In fact, between 1890 and 1913, it was the fastest growing in the world. New rail lines were opened at an annual rate double that of the Soviet years. Between 1900 and 1913, iron production increased by 58 percent, while coal production more than doubled.37 Exported Russian grain fed all of Europe. Finally, the last decades of Tsarist Russia witnessed a magnificent flowering of cultural life.

Everything changed with the First World War, a catastrophe not only for Russia, but for the entire West.

Monarchist Sentiment

In spite of (or perhaps because of) the relentless official campaign during the entire Soviet era to stamp out every uncritical memory of the Romanovs and imperial Russia, a virtual cult of popular veneration for Nicholas II has been sweeping Russia in recent years.

People have been eagerly paying the equivalent of several hours’ wages to purchase portraits of Nicholas from street vendors in Moscow, St. Petersburg and other Russian cities. His portrait now hangs in countless Russian homes and apartments. In late 1990, all 200,000 copies of a first printing of a 30-page pamphlet on the Romanovs quickly sold out. Said one street vendor: “I personally sold four thousand copies in no time at all. It’s like a nuclear explosion. People really want to know about their Tsar and his family.” Grass roots pro-Tsarist and monarchist organizations have sprung up in many cities.

A public opinion poll conducted in 1990 found that three out of four Soviet citizens surveyed regard the killing of the Tsar and his family as a despicable crime.38 Many Russian Orthodox believers regard Nicholas as a martyr. The independent “Orthodox Church Abroad” canonized the imperial family in 1981, and the Moscow-based Russian Orthodox Church has been under popular pressure to take the same step, in spite of its long-standing reluctance to touch this official taboo. The Russian Orthodox Archbishop of Ekaterinburg announced plans in 1990 to build a grand church at the site of the killings. “The people loved Emperor Nicholas,” he said. “His memory lives with the people, not as a saint but as someone executed without court verdict, unjustly, as a sufferer for his faith and for orthodoxy.”39

On the 75th anniversary of the massacre (in July 1993), Russians recalled the life, death and legacy of their last Emperor. In Ekaterinburg, where a large white cross festooned with flowers now marks the spot where the family was killed, mourners wept as hymns were sung and prayers were said for the victims.40

Reflecting both popular sentiment and new social-political realities, the white, blue and red horizontal tricolor flag of Tsarist Russia was officially adopted in 1991, replacing the red Soviet banner. And in 1993, the imperial two-headed eagle was restored as the nation’s official emblem, replacing the Soviet hammer and sickle. Cities that had been re-named to honor Communist figures — such as Leningrad, Kuibyshev, Frunze, Kalinin, and Gorky — have re-acquired their Tsarist-era names. Ekaterinburg, which had been named Sverdlovsk by the Soviets in 1924 in honor of the Soviet-Jewish chief, in September 1991 restored its pre-Communist name, which honors Empress Catherine I.

Symbolic Meaning

In view of the millions that would be put to death by the Soviet rulers in the years to follow, the murder of the Romanov family might not seem of extraordinary importance. And yet, the event has deep symbolic meaning. In the apt words of Harvard University historian Richard Pipes:41

The manner in which the massacre was prepared and carried out, at first denied and then justified, has something uniquely odious about it, something that radically distinguishes it from previous acts of regicide and brands it as a prelude to twentieth-century mass murder.

Another historian, Ivor Benson, characterized the killing of the Romanov family as symbolic of the tragic fate of Russia and, indeed, of the entire West, in this century of unprecedented agony and conflict.

The murder of the Tsar and his family is all the more deplorable because, whatever his failings as a monarch, Nicholas II was, by all accounts, a personally decent, generous, humane and honorable man.

The Massacre’s Place in History

The mass slaughter and chaos of the First World War, and the revolutionary upheavals that swept Europe in 1917-1918, brought an end not only to the ancient Romanov dynasty in Russia, but to an entire continental social order. Swept away as well was the Hohenzollern dynasty in Germany, with its stable constitutional monarchy, and the ancient Habsburg dynasty of Austria-Hungary with its multinational central European empire. Europe’s leading states shared not only the same Christian and Western cultural foundations, but most of the continent’s reigning monarchs were related by blood. England’s King George was, through his mother, a first cousin of Tsar Nicholas, and, through his father, a first cousin of Empress Alexandra. Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm was a first cousin of the German-born Alexandra, and a distant cousin of Nicholas.

More than was the case with the monarchies of western Europe, Russia’s Tsar personally symbolized his land and nation. Thus, the murder of the last emperor of a dynasty that had ruled Russia for three centuries not only symbolically presaged the Communist mass slaughter that would claim so many Russian lives in the decades that followed, but was symbolic of the Communist effort to kill the soul and spirit of Russia itself.

Notes

  1. Edvard Radzinksy, The Last Tsar (New York: Doubleday, 1992), pp. 327, 344-346.; Bill Keller, “Cult of the Last Czar,” The New York Times, Nov. 21, 1990.
  2. From an April 1935 entry in “Trotsky’s Diary in Exile.” Quoted in: Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (New York: Knopf, 1990), pp. 770, 787.; Robert K. Massie, Nicholas and Alexandra (New York: 1976), pp. 496-497.; E. Radzinksy, The Last Tsar (New York: Doubleday, 1992), pp. 325-326.; Ronald W. Clark, Lenin (New York: 1988), pp. 349-350.
  3. On Wilton and his career in Russia, see: Phillip Knightley, The First Casualty (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1976), pp. 141-142, 144-146, 151-152, 159, 162, 169, and, Anthony Summers and Tom Mangold, The File on the Tsar (New York: Harper and Row, 1976), pp. 102-104, 176.
  4. AP dispatch from Moscow, Toronto Star, Sept. 26, 1991, p. A2.; Similarly, a 1992 survey found that one-fourth of people in the republics of Belarus (White Russia) and Uzbekistan favored deporting all Jews to a special Jewish region in Russian Siberia. “Survey Finds Anti-Semitism on Rise in Ex-Soviet Lands,” Los Angeles Times, June 12, 1992, p. A4.
  5. At the turn of the century, Jews made up 4.2 percent of the population of the Russian Empire. Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (New York: 1990), p. 55 (fn.).
    By comparison, in the United States today, Jews make up less than three percent of the total population (according to the most authoritative estimates).
  6. See individual entries in: H. Shukman, ed., The Blackwell Encyclopedia of the Russian Revolution (Oxford: 1988), and in: G. Wigoder, ed., Dictionary of Jewish Biography (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1991).
    The prominent Jewish role in Russia’s pre-1914 revolutionary underground, and in the early Soviet regime, is likewise confirmed in: Stanley Rothman and S. Robert Lichter, Roots of Radicalism (New York: Oxford, 1982), pp. 92-94.
    In 1918, the Bolshevik Party’s Central Committee had 15 members. German scholar Herman Fehst — citing published Soviet records — reported in his useful 1934 study that of six of these 15 were Jews. Herman Fehst, Bolschewismus und Judentum: Das jüdische Element in der Führerschaft des Bolschewismus (Berlin: 1934), pp. 68-72.; Robert Wilton, though, reported that in 1918 the Central Committee of the Bolshevik party had twelve members, of whom nine were of Jewish origin and three were of Russian ancestry. R. Wilton, The Last Days of the Romanovs (IHR, 1993), p. 185.
  7. After years of official suppression, this fact was acknowledged in 1991 in the Moscow weekly Ogonyok. See: Jewish Chronicle (London), July 16, 1991.; See also: Letter by L. Horwitz in The New York Times, Aug. 5, 1992, which cites information from the Russian journal “Native Land Archives.”; “Lenin’s Lineage?”‘Jewish,’ Claims Moscow News,” Forward (New York City), Feb. 28, 1992, pp. 1, 3.; M. Checinski, Jerusalem Post (weekly international edition), Jan. 26, 1991, p. 9.
  8. Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (New York: Knopf, 1990), p. 352.
  9. Harrison E. Salisbury, Black Night, White Snow: Russia’s Revolutions, 1905-1917 (Doubleday, 1978), p. 475.; William H. Chamberlin, The Russian Revolution (Princeton Univ. Press, 1987), vol. 1, pp. 291-292.; Herman Fehst, Bolschewismus und Judentum: Das jüdische Element in der Führerschaft des Bolschewismus (Berlin: 1934), pp. 42-43.; P. N. Pospelov, ed., Vladimir Ilyich Lenin: A Biography (Moscow: Progress, 1966), pp. 318-319.
    This meeting was held on October 10 (old style, Julian calendar), and on October 23 (new style). The six Jews who took part were: Uritsky, Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev, Sverdlov and Soklonikov.
    The Bolsheviks seized power in Petersburg on October 25 (old style) — hence the reference to the “Great October Revolution” — which is November 7 (new style).
  10. William H. Chamberlin, The Russian Revolution (1987), vol. 1, p. 292.; H. E. Salisbury, Black Night, White Snow: Russia’s Revolutions, 1905-1917 (1978), p. 475.
  11. W. H. Chamberlin, The Russian Revolution, vol. 1, pp. 274, 299, 302, 306.; Alan Moorehead, The Russian Revolution (New York: 1965), pp. 235, 238, 242, 243, 245.; H. Fehst, Bolschewismus und Judentum (Berlin: 1934), pp. 44, 45.
  12. H. E. Salisbury, Black Night, White Snow: Russia’s Revolutions, 1905-1917 (1978), p. 479-480.; Dmitri Volkogonov, Stalin: Triumph and Tragedy (New York: Grove Weidenfeld, 1991), pp. 27-28, 32.; P. N. Pospelov, ed., Vladimir Ilyich Lenin: A Biography (Moscow: Progress, 1966), pp. 319-320.
  13. “Zionism versus Bolshevism: A struggle for the soul of the Jewish people,” Illustrated Sunday Herald (London), February 8, 1920. Facsimile reprint in: William Grimstad, The Six Million Reconsidered (1979), p. 124. (At the time this essay was published, Churchill was serving as minister of war and air.)
  14. David R. Francis, Russia from the American Embassy (New York: 1921), p. 214.
  15. Foreign Relations of the United States — 1918 — Russia, Vol. 1 (Washington, DC: 1931), pp. 678-679.
  16. American Hebrew (New York), Sept. 1920. Quoted in: Nathan Glazer and Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Beyond the Melting Pot (Cambridge, Mass.: 1963), p. 268.
  17. C. Jacobson, “Jews in the USSR” in: American Review on the Soviet Union, August 1945, p. 52.; Avtandil Rukhadze, Jews in the USSR: Figures, Facts, Comment (Moscow: Novosti, 1978), pp. 10-11.
  18. T. Emmons and B. M. Patenaude, eds., War, Revolution and Peace in Russia: The Passages of Frank Golder, 1913-1927 (Stanford: Hoover Institution, 1992), pp. 320, 139, 317.
  19. Louis Rapoport, Stalin’s War Against the Jews (New York: Free Press, 1990), pp. 30, 31, 37. See also pp. 43, 44, 45, 49, 50.
  20. Quoted in: Salo Baron, The Russian Jews Under Tsars and Soviets (New York: 1976), pp. 170, 392 (n. 4).
  21. The Atlantic, Sept. 1991, p. 14.;
    In 1919, three-quarters of the Cheka staff in Kiev were Jews, who were careful to spare fellow Jews. By order, the Cheka took few Jewish hostages. R. Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), p. 824.; Israeli historian Louis Rapoport also confirms the dominant role played by Jews in the Soviet secret police throughout the 1920s and 1930s. L. Rapoport, Stalin’s War Against the Jews (New York: 1990), pp. 30-31, 43-45, 49-50.
  22. E. Radzinsky, The Last Tsar (1992), pp. 244, 303-304.; Bill Keller, “Cult of the Last Czar,” The New York Times, Nov. 21, 1990.; See also: W. H. Chamberlin, The Russian Revolution, vol. 2, p. 90.
  23. Quoted in: The New Republic, Feb. 5, 1990, pp. 30 ff.; Because of the alleged anti-Semitism of Russophobia, in July 1992 Shafarevich was asked by the National Academy of Sciences (Washington, DC) to resign as an associate member of that prestigious body.
  24. R. Wilton, The Last Days of the Romanovs (1993), p. 148.
  25. Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), p. 787.; Robert K. Massie, Nicholas and Alexandra (New York: 1976), pp. 496-497.
  26. An article in a 1907 issue of the respected American journal National Geographic reported on the revolutionary situation brewing in Russia in the years before the First World War: ” The revolutionary leaders nearly all belong to the Jewish race, and the most effective revolutionary agency is the Jewish Bund ” W. E. Curtis, “The Revolution in Russia,” The National Geographic Magazine, May 1907, pp. 313-314.
    Piotr Stolypin, probably imperial Russia’s greatest statesman, was murdered in 1911 by a Jewish assassin. In 1907, Jews made up about ten percent of Bolshevik party membership. In the Menshevik party, another faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party, the Jewish proportion was twice as high. R. Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), p. 365.; See also: R. Wilton, The Last Days of the Romanovs (1993), pp. 185-186.
  27. Martin Gilbert, Atlas of Jewish History (1977), pp. 71, 74.; In spite of the restrictive “Pale” policy, in 1897 about 315,000 Jews were living outside the Pale, most of them illegally. In 1900 more than 20,000 were living in the capital of St. Petersburg, and another 9,000 in Moscow.
  28. Sonja Margolina, Das Ende der Lügen: Russland und die Juden im 20. Jahrhundert (Berlin: 1992). Quoted in: “Ein ganz heisses Eisen angefasst,” Deutsche National-Zeitung (Munich), July 21, 1992, p. 12.
  29. Krasnaia Gazetta (“Red Gazette”), September 1, 1918. Quoted in: Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), pp. 820, 912 (n. 88).
  30. Richard Pipes, The Russian Revolution (New York: 1990), p. 820.
  31. Contrary to what a number of western historians have for years suggested, Soviet terror and the Gulag camp system did not begin with Stalin. At the end of 1920, Soviet Russia already had 84 concentration camps with approximately 50,000 prisoners. By October 1923 the number had increased to 315 camps with 70,000 inmates. R. Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), p. 836.
  32. Cited by historian Robert Conquest in a review/ article in The New York Review of Books, Sept. 23, 1993, p. 27.
  33. The New York Review of Books, Sept. 23, 1993, p. 27.
  34. Review/article by Robert Conquest in The New York Review of Books, Sept. 23, 1993, p. 27.; In the “Great Terror” years of 1937-1938 alone, Conquest has calculated, approximately one million were shot by the Soviet secret police, and another two million perished in Soviet camps. R. Conquest, The Great Terror (New York: Oxford, 1990), pp. 485-486.;
    Conquest has estimated that 13.5 to 14 million people perished in the collectivization (“dekulakization”) campaign and forced famine of 1929-1933. R. Conquest, The Harvest of Sorrow (New York: Oxford, 1986), pp. 301-307.
  35. Russian professor Igor Bestuzhev-Lada, writing in a 1988 issue of the Moscow weekly Nedelya, suggested that during the Stalin era alone (1935-1953), as many as 50 million people were killed, condemned to camps from which they never emerged, or lost their lives as a direct result of the brutal “dekulakization” campaign against the peasantry. “Soviets admit Stalin killed 50 million,” The Sunday Times, London, April 17, 1988.;
    R. J. Rummel, a professor of political science at the University of Hawaii, has recently calculated that 61.9 million people were systematically killed by the Soviet Communist regime from 1917 to 1987. R. J. Rummel, Lethal Politics: Soviet Genocide and Mass Murder Since 1917 (Transaction, 1990).
  36. Because of his revolutionary activities, Lenin was sentenced in 1897 to three years exile in Siberia. During this period of “punishment,” he got married, wrote some 30 works, made extensive use of a well-stocked local library, subscribed to numerous foreign periodicals, kept up a voluminous correspondence with supporters across Europe, and enjoyed numerous sport hunting and ice skating excursions, while all the time receiving a state stipend. See: Ronald W. Clark, Lenin (New York: 1988), pp. 42-57.; P. N. Pospelov, ed., Vladimir Ilyich Lenin: A Biography (Moscow: Progress, 1966), pp. 55-75.
  37. R. Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), pp. 187-188.;
  38. The Nation, June 24, 1991, p. 838.
  39. Bill Keller, “Cult of the Last Czar,” The New York Times, Nov. 21, 1990.
  40. “Nostalgic for Nicholas, Russians Honor Their Last Czar,” Los Angeles Times, July 18, 1993.; “Ceremony marks Russian czar’s death,” Orange County Register, July 17, 1993.
  41. R. Pipes, The Russian Revolution (1990), p. 787.

From The Journal of Historical Review, Jan.-Feb. 1994 (Vol. 14, No. 1), pages 4-22.

About the Author:

Mark Weber was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. He studied history at the University of Illinois (Chicago), the University of Munich, Portland State University and Indiana University (M.A., 1977).

Source: http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v14/v14n1p-4_weber.html

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Prof. Vladislav B. Sotirović About The Situation In Ukraine

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Professor Vladislav B. Sotirović, Ph.D. is a Senior Lecturer of: “Middle East Studies” at the Mykolas Romeris University, Vilnius, Lithuania; “Mediterranean Studies;” “Ethnicity, Multiculturalism and Globalisation;” “Balkan Nationalism and Ethnic Conflicts”and “Europeanisation: Process and Results.”

Prof. Dr. Sotirović is a distinguished expert on the History of the Early Byzantine Empire, 330–846”, Comparative History of Central and South Eastern Europe and Ottoman History, History of Lithuania and Ukraine. He is well known abroad for his influential books and popular lectures about Lithuania, Russian Federation, the Balkans and Baltic Nations and the Multiculturalism.

Professor Sotirović has studied at the Central European Summer University, Budapest, Hungary (2002); earned his Ph. D. in Vilnius University, Faculty of Philology, Slavic Philology Department, in Vilnius, Lithuania. Has pursued graduated studes at the School of Human Rights Research, Tilburg University and Institute for Human Rights, of the Catholic University of Leuven (2001), the Netherlands and Leuven, Belgium; the Center for European Integration Studies, Bonn, Germany (2001); European Academy of Bozen/Bolzano, South Tyrol (Alto Adige), Italy, and in many other Summer Universities and post graduate programs.  The following is an extensive interview that Prof. Sotirović has provided to Foreign Policy News Journal, in Washington, DC.

Peter Tase: What is the historical background of the current Ukrainian conflict from the point of view of the Ukrainian statehood?

Vladislav B. Sotirović: The German occupation forces were those who have been the first to create and recognise a short-lived state’s independence of Ukraine in January 1918 during the time of their-own inspired and supported anti-Russian Bolshevik Revolution of 1917−1921. As reoccupied by the Bolshevik Red Army, the eastern and southern parts of the present-day territory of (a Greater) Ukraine joined in 1922 the USSR as a separate Soviet Socialist Republic (without Crimea). Therefore, a Jew V. I. Lenin has to be considered as the real historical father of the Ukrainian statehood but also and as of the contemporary nationhood. Ukraine was the most fertile agricultural Soviet republic but particularly catastrophically affected by (Georgian) Stalin’s economic policy in the 1930s which neglected agricultural production in favour of the speed industrialisation of the country. The result was a great famine (holodomor) with around seven million people dead but majority of them were of the ethnic Russian origin. A territory of the present-day Ukraine was devastated during the WWII by the Nazi German occupation forces from 1941 to 1944 who installed in Ukraine a puppet and criminal regime of S. Bandera (1900−1959) under which a genocide on Poles, Jews and Russians was committed. For instance, the Ukrainian militia (12.000) directly participated in the 1942 holocaust of some 200.000 Volhynian Jews together with 140.000 German policemen. The Ukrainian mass killers learned their job from the Germans and applied their knowledge as well as on the Poles.

After the war, J. V. Stalin, supported by the Ukrainian party-cadre N. Khrushchev, deported about 300.000 Ukrainians from their homeland as they have been accused for the collaboration with the Nazi regime during the war and the participation in genocide done by S. Bandera’s government. However, after the war the Ukrainians have been and directly rewarded by Moscow for the collaboration with the Germans and participation in S. Bandera’s organized genocide as the lands of Transcarpathia, littoral Moldova (Bessarabia), Polish Galicia and part of Romania’s Bukovina in 1945 followed by Crimea in 1954 became annexed by the Soviet Socialist Republic of Ukraine. These territories, which never have been part of any kind of Ukraine and overwhelmingly not populated by the ethnolinguistic Ukrainians, were included into the Soviet Ukraine primarily due to the political activity by the strongest Ukrainian cadre in the USSR – N. Khrushchev, a person who inherited Stalin’s throne in Moscow in 1953. On this place, a parallel with Croatia is an absolute: for the Croat committed genocide on the Serbs, Jews and Roma by A. Pavelić’s regime (a Croat version of S. Bandera) during the WWII on the territory of the Independent State of Croatia a post-war (Socialist Republic of) Croatia was awarded by a Croat-Slovenian dictator of Yugoslavia J. B. Tito with the lands of Istria, Adriatic islands and Dubrovnik – all of them never have been in any kind of the state of Croatia before the WWII.

M. Gorbachev’s policy of deliberate dissolution of the USSR from the time of Reykjavik bilateral meeting with Ronald Reagan in 1988 caused a revival of the ethnic nationalism of the Ukrainians who proclaimed an independence on August 24th, 1991 (confirmed on a referendum held on December 1st, 1991 only by those who did not boycott it) in the wake of anti-Gorbachev’s military putsch in Moscow (mis)using the political situation of paralyzed central government in the country. The state’s independence of Ukraine was proclaimed and later internationally recognized within the borders of a Greater Stalin-Khrushchev’s Ukraine with at least 20% of the ethic Russian population living in a compact area in the eastern part of the country and as well as making a qualified (2/3) majority of Crimea’s population. The coming years saw the rifts with neighbouring Russia with the main political task by Kiev to commit as possible as the Ukrainization (assimilation) of ethnic Russians (similar to the policy of the Croatization of ethnic Serbs in Croatia orchestrated by the neo-Nazi government in Zagreb led by Dr. Franjo Tuđman). At the same time the Russian majority in Crimea constantly required the peninsula’s reunification with mother Russia but getting only an autonomous status within Ukraine – a country which they never considered as their natural-historical homeland. The Russians of Ukraine were becoming more and more unsatisfied with conditions in which they have been leaving from the time when in 1998−2001 the Ukrainian taxation system collapsed what meant that the central government in Kiev was not able to pay the salaries and pensions to its own citizens. A very weak Ukrainian state became in fact unable to function normally (“failed state”) and as a consequence it did not have a power to prevent a series of politically motivated assassinations followed by popular protests which had been also very much inspired by economic decline of the country.

As a matter of fact, it has to be stressed that the Ukrainian historiography on their own history of the land and the people is extremely nationalistic and in very cases not objective like many other national historiographies. It is basically politically coloured with the main task to present the Ukrainians as a natural ethnolinguistic nation who have been historically fighting to create a united independent national state and unjustifiably claiming certain territories to be ethnohistorically the “Ukrainian”. As a typical example of such tendency to rewrite history of the East Europe according to the nationalistic and politically correct framework is, for instance, the book by Serhy Jekelčyk on the birth of a modern Ukrainian nation in which, among other quasi-historical facts based on the self-interpreted events, is written that the USSR in 1939−1940 annexed from Poland and Romania the “West Ukrainian land” (Serhy Jekelčyk, Ukraina: Modernios nacijos gimimas, Vilnius: Baltos lankos, 2009, 17).

However, this “Western Ukrainian Land” never was part of any kind of Ukraine before the WWII as Ukraine as a state or administrative province never existed before V. I. Lenin created in 1923 a Soviet Socialist Republic of Ukraine within the USSR but at that time without the “Western Ukrainian Land” as it was not a part of the USSR. Moreover, the Ukrainians were either not leaving or being just minority on this land what means that Ukraine even did not have ethnic rights over the biggest part of the “West Ukraine.”  Even today around half of Ukraine’s state’s territory is not populated by the Ukrainians as a majority of the population. Moreover, in some regions there are no Ukrainians at all. Therefore, the cardinal question is on which principle the Ukrainian borders are shaped?

As another example of the Ukrainian historiographic nationalistic misleading we can find in an academic brochure on Bukovina’s Metropolitan’s residence, published in 2007 by the National University of Chernivtsi. In the brochure is written that this university is “…one of the oldest classical universities of Ukraine” (The Architecturial Complex of Bukovynian Metropolitan’s Residence, Chernivtsi: Yuriy Fedkovych National University of Chernivtsi, 2007, 31) that is true only from the present-day rough political perspective but not and from a moral-historic point of view.  Namely, the university is located in the North Bukovina which in 1775 the Habsburg Monarchy had obtained. The land was from 1786 administrated within the Chernivtsi district of Galicia and one hundred years after the affiliation of Bukovina to the monarchy, the Franz-Josephs-Universität was inaugurated on October 4th, 1875 (the name day of the emperor). In the other words, the university’s origin as whole Bukovina has nothing to do with any kind of both historical Ukraine and ethnic Ukrainians as before 1940 it was outside of administrative territory of Ukraine when the whole North Bukovina on August 13th, became annexed by the USSR according to the Hitler-Stalin Pact (or the Ribbentrop-MolotovPact) signed on August 23rd, 1939 (ibid.). Therefore, two notorious bandits (one Nazi another Bolshevik) decided to transfer the North Bukovina to the USSR and the land became after the WWII part of a Greater (Stalin’s) Ukrainian SSR. Nevertheless, while the Ukrainian nationalists claim that “Russia” (in fact anti-Russian USSR) occupied Ukraine, the annexation of the North Bukovina and other territories from Poland, Czechoslovakia and Romania in 1940 are for them a legitimate act of historical justice. Here we have to notice that according to the same pact, the territories of the independent states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are as well as annexed by the USSR that is considered by their historians and politicians as “occupation”, what means (illegal) act of aggression that is breaking international law and legitimate order. Nevertheless, they never accused Ukraine of doing the same in regard to occupied lands from its three western neighbours in 1940/1944.

Political assimilation of certain separate Slavonic ethnolinguistic groups in Ukraine was and is one of the standardized instruments for the creation and maintaining of the Ukrainian national identity in the 20th century. The most brutal case is of the Ruthenians (Rusyns) who are simply proclaimed as historical Ukrainians known under such name till the WWII. Their land, which was in the interwar period part of Czechoslovakia, that was annexed by the USSR at the end of the WWII and included into a Greater Soviet Ukraine is simply renamed from Ruthenia into the Sub-Carpathian Ukraine. However, the Ruthenians and the Ukrainians are two separate Slavonic ethnolinguistic groups as such officially recognized, for example, in Serbia’s Autonomous Province of Vojvodina where the Ruthenian (Rusyn) language is even standardized and studied together with Ruthenian philology and literature at a separate department at the University of Novi Sad. Unfortunately, the Ruthenian position in Ukraine is even worst in comparison with the Kurdish position in Turkey as the process of Ruthenian assimilation is much speeder than of the Kurdish case.

From the current perspective of the Ukrainian crisis and in general from the point of solving the “Ukrainian Question” it has to be noticed a very historical fact that a part of the present-day East Ukraine became legally incorporated into the Russian Empire in 1654 as a consequence of the decision by the local hetman of Zaporozhian territory Bohdan Khmelnytsky (c. 1595−1657) based on a popular revolt against the Polish-Lithuanian (the Roman Catholic) occupation of Ukraine which broke out in 1648. It means that the core of the present-day Ukraine voluntarily joined Russia, therefore escaping from the Roman Catholic Polish-Lithuanian oppression. Subsequently, B. Khmelnytsky’s ruled territory has to be considered from a historical point of view as the motherland of all present-day Ukraine – the motherland which already in 1654 chose Russia.                   

Peter Tase: How do you see the Euromaidan Revolution in 2014?

Vladislav B. Sotirović: The current Ukrainian crisis and in fact civil war which stared at the very end of 2013 are grounded in for decades lasting internal interethnic antagonisms primarily on the Ukrainian-Russian relations including above all the “Crimean Question” as an apple of discord from 1954 between Ukraine and Russia. The crisis came from Lithuania’s capital Vilnius were in November 2013 an Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine had to be signed. Lithuania at that time (July 1st−December 31st, 2013) presided the European (Union) Council and formally had a full political responsibility for the breaking out of the crisis as being the host of the event on which the EU absolutely blamed only Ukraine’s President V. Yanukovych for the failure of the agreement as he simply rejected to sign it.

However, his decision was primarily based on the logic of a realpolitik as he preferred much more favourable economic-financial offer by Moscow (including and de facto legalization of stealing of the Russia’s gas to Europe that was transported via Ukraine) for the purpose to try to resolve inner economic, social and political crisis which was threatening a stability of the Ukrainian society and state from 1991. The official Kiev recognizes that for Ukraine (up to 2014) Russia was:

“…the largest trade partner and a huge market. In addition, many Ukrainians have family and friendly relations with the Russian people. In this connection, it should be noted that Europeans are actually interested in stable partnership between the two countries. Ukraine remains the major transit country for Russian natural gas transported to Europe, and it is very important for Kyiv to make sure that Europeans regard it as a reliable and predictable partner” (Ukraine. A Country of Opportunities, Kyiv: the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, 2010, 6).

It was obvious that such Yanukovych’s turn toward the Russian Federation would mean and closest political ties between Kiev and Moscow in the future – a cardinal reason for the EU and USA to directly fuel a new colour revolution in Ukraine for the purpose to overthrow Yanukovych and to install instead of him their own puppet regime which will drive the country to direction of both the EU and the NATO. The Ukrainian 2013/2014 coloured revolution was committed according to the model of the first CIA’s sponsored East European colour revolution that was organized in Serbia (Belgrade) at the beginning of October 2000 (the “2000 October 5th Revolution”). The protest of the “people” in Kiev in 2014 finally was ended by a classic street-style coup d’étatlike in Belgrade 14 years ago and installation of as well as a classic (pro-USA/EU/NATO’s) marionette regime. As it is known from any introductory course on democracy, any kind of coup d’état (putsch) is illegal and unconstitutional. As in the 2000 Belgrade Coup case, the 2014 Kiev Putsch case was formally justified as a “popular revolt” against the dictator who became ousted in February 2014. In fact, however, unlawfully removed legally and legitimately elected head of state by the USA/EU’s sponsored and supported ultranationalistic and even a neo-Nazi coloured political upheaval of the “Euromaidan” protesters in Kiev and some other bigger western Ukrainian cities (like in Lvov) directly provoked a new popular coloured revolution in the Russian speaking provinces of the East Ukraine and Crimea with a final consequence of a territorial secession of self-proclaimed Luhansk, Kharkov, and Donetsk People’s Republics and Crimea (according to Kosovo pattern from 2008).

In regard to the 2014 Kyiv Coup, according to Paul Craig Roberts, Washington used its funded NGOs ($5 billion according to Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland at the National Press Club in December 2013) to begin street protests when the elected Ukrainian Government turned down the offer to join the European Union.Similarly to the Ukrainian coup in 2014, the Guatemala coup in 1954, when democratically elected Government of Jacobo Arbenz became overthrown, was also carried out by the CIA. Nonetheless, following R. Reagan’s logic used in the US-led military invasion of Grenada in 1983, the Russian President could send a regular army of the Russian Federation to occupy Ukraine for the security reasons of Russia’s citizens who were studying at the universities in Kiev, Odessa or Lvov. Similar R. Reagan’s argument (to protect the US’ students in Grenada) was (mis)used, among others, and by Adolf Hitler in April 1941 to invade and occupy the Kingdom of Yugoslavia as, according to the German intelligence service, the German minority in Yugoslavia (the Volksdeutschers) were oppressed and terrorized by the new (pro-British) Government of General Dušan Simović after the coup in Belgrade committed on March 27th, 1941.Nonetheless, a new anti-Russian government in Kiev launched a brutal linguistic and cultural policy of Ukrainization directly endangering the rights of ethnolinguistic Russians, who represent a clear majority of the population of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions of the East Ukraine, Crimean Peninsula respectively but as well as and of other non-Ukrainian population who supported a pro-Russia’s course of the country.

13928596714_c30063d9b6_b_Stepan-Bandera

Peter Tase: Who are the Ukrainians or what you can say on a Ukrainian identity as a very important part of the current Ukrainian conflict issue?

Vladislav B. Sotirović: Ukraine is an East European territory which was originally forming a western part of the Russian Empire from the mid-17th century. That is a present-day independent state and separate ethnolinguistic nation as a typical example of Benedict Anderson’s theory-model of the “imagined community” – a self-constructed idea of the artificial ethnic and linguistic-cultural identity. Before 2014 Ukraine was a home of some 46 million inhabitants of whom, according to the official data, there were around 77 percent of those who declared themselves as the Ukrainians. Nevertheless, many Russians do not consider the Ukrainians or the Belarus as “foreign” but rather as the regional branches of the Russian nationality. It is a matter of fact that, differently to the Russian case, the national identity of the Belarus or the Ukrainians was never firmly fixed as it was always in the constant process of changing and evolving. The process of self-constructing identity of the Ukrainians after 1991 is basically oriented vis-à-vis Ukraine’s two most powerful neighbours: Poland and Russia. In the other words, the self-constructing Ukrainian identity (like the Montenegrin or the Belarus) is able so far just to claim that the Ukrainians are not both the Poles or the Russians but what they really are is of a great debate. Therefore, an existence of an independent state of Ukraine, nominally as a national state of the Ukrainians, is of a very doubt indeed from both perspectives: historical and ethnolinguistic.

The Slavonic term Ukraine, for instance, in the Serbo-Croat case Krajina, means in the English language a Borderland – a provincial territory situated on the border between at least two political entities: in this particular historical case, between the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania as the Republic of Both Nations (1569−1795) and the Russian Empire (a German historical term for Ukraine would be a mark – a term for the state’s borderland which existed from the time of the Frankish Kingdom/Empire of Carl the Great).

The term is mostly used from the time of the treaty (truce) of Andrussovo in 1667 between these two states. In the other words, Ukraine and the Ukrainians as a natural objective-historical-cultural identity never existed as it was considered only as a geographic-political territory between two other natural-historical entities (Poland and Russia). All (quasi)historiographical mentioning of this land and the people as Ukraine/Ukrainians referring to the period before the mid-17th century are quite scientifically incorrect but in majority of cases politically inspired and coloured with the purpose to present them as something crucially different from the historical process of ethnicgenesis of the Russians (see, for instance: Alfredas Bumblauskas, Genutė Kirkienė, Feliksas Šabuldo (sudarytojai), Ukraina: Lietuvos epocha, 1320−1569, Vilnius: Mokslo ir enciklopedijų leidybos centras, 2010).

It was a Roman Catholic Vatican that was behand the process of creation of the “imagined community” of the “Ukrainian” national identity for the very political purpose to separate the people from this borderland territory from the Orthodox Russian Empire. Absolutely the same was done by Vatican’s client Austria-Hungary in regard to the national identity of Bosnian-Herzegovinian population when this province was administered by Vienna-Budapest from 1878 to 1918 as it was the Austria-Hungarian government who created totally artificial and very new ethnolinguistic identity – the “Bosnians”, just not to be the (Orthodox) Serbs (who were at that time a strong majority of the provincial population).

A creation of ethnolinguistically artificial Ukrainian national identity and later on a separate nationality was a part of a wider confessional-political project by Vatican in the Roman Catholic historical struggle against the eastern Orthodox Christianity (the eastern “schism”) and its Churches within the framework of Pope’s traditional proselytizing policy of reconversion of the “infidels”. One of the most successful instruments of a soft-way reconversion used by Vatican was to compel a part of the Orthodox population to sign with the Roman Catholic Church the Union Act recognizing at such a way a supreme power by the Pope and dogmatic filioque (“and from the Son” – the Holy Spirit proceeds and from the Father and from the Son). Therefore, the ex-Orthodox believers who now became the Uniate Brothers or the Greek Orthodox believers became in a great number later on a pure Roman Catholics but as well as changed their original (from the Orthodox time) ethnolinguistic identity. It is, for instance, very clear in the case of the Orthodox Serbs in Zhumberak area of Croatia – from the Orthodox Serbs to the Greek Orthodox, later the Roman Catholics and finally today the Croats. Something similar occurred and in the case of Ukraine. On October 9th, 1596 it was announced by Vatican a Brest Union with a part of the Orthodox population within the borders of the Roman Catholic Lithuanian-Polish Commonwealth (today Ukraine). The crucial issue in this matter is that today Ukraina’s Uniates and the Roman Catholics are most anti-Russian and of the Ukrainian national feelings. Basically, both the Ukrainian and the Belarus present-day ethnolinguistic and national identities are historically founded on the anti-Orthodox policy of Vatican within the territory of ex-Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth that was in essence an anti-Russian one.

The Lithuanian historiography writing on the Church Union of Brest in 1596 clearly confirms that:

“… the Catholic Church more and more strongly penetrated the zone of the Orthodox Church, giving a new impetus to the idea, which had been cherished since the time of Jogaila and Vytautas and formulated in the principles of the Union of Florence in 1439, but never put into effect – the subordination of the GDL Orthodox Church to the Pope’s rule” (Zigmantas Kiaupa et al, The History of Lithuania Before 1795, Vilnius: Lithuanian Institute of History, 2000, 288).

In the other words, the rulers of the Roman Catholic Grand Duchy of Lithuania (the GDL) from the very time of Lithuania’s baptizing in 1387−1413 by Vatican had a plan to Catholicize all Orthodox believers of the GDL among whom overwhelming majority were the Slavs. As a consequence, the relations with Moscow became very hostile as Russia accepted a role of the protector of the Orthodox believers and faith and therefore the Church Union of Brest was seen as a criminal act by Rome and its client the Republic of Two Nations (Poland-Lithuania).

Today, it is absolutely clear that the most pro-western and anti-Russian part of Ukraine is exactly the West Ukraine – the lands that was historically under the rule by the Roman Catholic ex-Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the former Habsburg Monarchy. It is obvious, for instance, from the presidential voting results in 2010 as the pro-western regions voted for J. Tymoshenko while the pro-Russian regions do it for V. Yanukovych. It is a reflection of the post-Soviet Ukrainian identity dilemma between “Europe” and “Eurasia” – a dilemma that is of common nature for all Central and East European nations who historically played a role of a buffer zone between the German Mittel Europa project and the Russian project of a pan-Slavonic unity and reciprocity.

In general, the western territories of the present-day Ukraine are mainly populated by the Roman Catholics, the East Orthodox and the Uniates. This part of Ukraine is mostly nationalistic and pro-western oriented. The East Ukraine is in essence Russophone and subsequently tends to look to closer relations with Russia.

Peter Tase: Russia’s President V. Putin called a Crimean separation from Ukraine in 2014 as a legitimate act founded on the example of Kosovo separation from Serbia in 2008. Can you comment on it? 

Vladislav B. Sotirović: The revolt and colored revolution by the Russian speaking population in the East Ukraine in 2014 finally resulted in separation of Crimea from Ukraine based on the Declaration of Independence of the Crimea as a legal document followed by the people’s referendum on joining Russia based on the formal self-determination rights according to the model and practice of, for instance, the Baltic states in 1990 when they declared independence from the USSR.

It is clear from the official declaration by the Supreme Council of Crimea on peninsula’s independence that this legal and legitimate act is founded on international law and the people’s right to self-determination, but moreover, as well as based on the so-called “Kosovo precedent” – a western created “precedent” in 2008 which came as a boomerang to Ukraine six years later. Basically, “Kosovo precedent” is a clear representative example of a flagrant violation of the international law and order including above all the UN Charter and the UN 1244 Resolution on Kosovo. This “precedent” is firstly created in 1999 by a brutal NATO military aggression on the independent and sovereign state of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) without any mandate of the SC UN that was followed in February 2008 by unilateral proclamation of Kosovo independence by Kosovo parliament and its recognition by a part of the world. At such a way, the West created the “precedence” which by definition has to be a unique case of the time in the international relations and global politics what theoretically means that it cannot serve as a foundation or example for any similar case all over the world. However, this international and legal “precedent” was in 2010 internationally and legally empowered by the opinion by the UN International Court of Justice that a proclamation of Kosovo independence does not violate an international law on self-determination (independence) what is true but at the same time it violates the UN Charter on territorial integrity of the states and their domestic law what is also true.  Nevertheless, the court’s opinion is, formally, just of the advisory nature but in practice it has serious implications and consequences. The first coming one was exactly the Crimean case in 2014 that was clearly stated either by the local Crimean authorities or by Russia’s government.

Undoubtedly, “Kosovo precedent” not only shaken but even destroyed the very foundations of international law based primarily on the UN Charter and resolutions. As a direct consequence, it had direct “boomerang effect” with regard to the case of Crimean secession from Ukraine and following annexation by Russia. We have to remember that Crimea broke away relations with Ukraine calling for the same formal reasons used by the Albanians in the case of the 2008 “Kosovo precedent” and other legal arguments. Nevertheless, the western countries recognized Kosovo independence from Serbia but not Crimean, Donetsk and Luhansk separation from Ukraine regardless the fact that all of these cases are formally and officially based on the same legal and moral arguments. Moreover, differently to “Kosovo precedent”, separation cases in Ukraine are based on the results of the plebiscites.

The western policy of double standards is very visible from the following written statement on Kosovo independence by the US of April 17th, 2009 that was submitted to the UN International Court of Justice: “Declarations of independence may, and often do, violate domestic legislation. However, this does not make them violations of international law.” Nonetheless, similar statement by the same US administration on the independence cases of the Republic of Serbian Krayina, Republic of Srpska, Republic of Transnistria, Republic of Abkhazia, Republic of South Ossetia or three separatist republics in the East Ukraine and Crimea we did not hear. Obviously, the UN International Court of Justice accepted the US statement and issued on July 22nd, 2010 its own two that “No general prohibition may be inferred from the practice of the Security Council with regard to declarations of independence,” and “General international law contains no prohibition on declarations of independence.” According to the above statements, however, it is clear that Moscow was absolutely truthful in the case of Crimea’s secession but with one important distinction: Russia did not bomb Kiev previously!

As a matter of fact, the West did not offer to Belgrade possibility of federalization of Serbia with Kosovo as one federal unit as only the independence of Kosovo was advocated as the optimal solution. However, Moscow is advocating exactly the federalization as the best solution for the Ukrainian crisis with the East Ukrainian Russian-speaking regions as a single federal territory. Crimea, following the logic of both historical and ethnic rights, has to stay in Russia as the peninsula has nothing to do with Ukraine. Even Turkey or Greece have more rights on Crimea than Ukraine. The scenario of federalized Ukraine would surely positively influence the process of stopping already ongoing new Cold War in this case between the West (the NATO and the EU) and the bloc of the countries around Russia, China and Iran. However, if the western mentors of the Euromaidan government in Kiev will reject such Russia’s proposal it is most probably that Ukraine will be left to commit suicide as the western policy of double standards, promoted by the US and the EU in the 2008 Kosovo Case will continue to have the boomerang effect in the rest of the East Ukraine following the Odessa region as well.

Peter Tase: What is the way out, according to your opinion, of the current Ukrainian crisis?

Vladislav B. Sotirović: Current Ukrainian crisis can be solved according to the 1667 Andrussovo Treaty signed on February 9th between Poland-Lithuania and Russia. According to the treaty a present-day territory of Ukraine was simply divided between two states: the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (the Republic of Both Nations) and the Russian Empire with Dnieper river as a demarcation line. In the other words, Russia received from Poland-Lithuania territories eastward from Dnieper but with Kiev and whole Zaporozhie region (from both sides of the river). Therefore, Dnieper became a border between “Europe” and Russia with divided Ukraine into two borderlands. The Slavonic word Ukraine means in English a borderland. It is clear even from the name of the country what is going to be its ultimate destiny. Before or later, no matter. The case of the Republic of Serbian Krayina (Ukraine) proved it clearly in the 1990s – the Borderland can be only a periphery of some more natural state. It does not matter on which side of the border.

We cannot forget and a humanitarian intervention aspect of the final solution of the “Ukrainian Question”. In general, “intervention” is considered as forcible action committed by some state(s) against another one(s) but without the consent by the attacked side. Therefore, “humanitarian intervention” is a military intervention carried out by some state(s) for the sake to protect human rights (usually as a group minority rights). Speaking from the very morality point of view, a humanitarian intervention is grounded, or at least (mis)used as a formal pretext, on the notion of being “humanitarian” what means to be concerned about the interest of and benefits to mankind particularly if the suffering of someone has to be reduced. The concept of humanitarian intervention is (mis)used especially after the Cold War as in the cases of Iraq (in 1991 to create “safe havens” for the Kurds by establishing a no-fly zone policed by three NATO pact countries: the USA, UK and France), Somalia (in 1992 to create a protected environment), Haiti (in 1994 to restore order by the civil authority), Rwanda (in 1994 to create “safe zone” for the Hutu refugees), Kosovo (in 1999 to protect the Albanians from Serbia’s military and police forces), East Timor (in 1999 to prevent possible ethnic cleansing by Indonesia’s security forces) and Sierra Leone (in 2000 to protect the UK citizens at the time of the local civil war).

Peter Tase: How the concept of “humanitarian intervention” can affect the Ukrainian crisis?

Vladislav B. Sotirović: Very controversial wars of humanitarian intervention in above mentioned cases, in which participated only the western powers, were formally justified on humanitarian grounds. However, in majority of these cases the intervention had in essence very political and geopolitical real background as it clearly shows the cases of Kosovo and Sierra Leone. In Kosovo case, the intervention was committed just in a context of fears about the possibility of ethnic cleansing but not on the real ground. Following NATO airstrikes campaign for 78 days was conducted without the SC UN authorization but finally it forced Serbia to withdraw its complete military and police forces from the province. As a consequence, the province was occupied by the NATO troops with creation of huge US military base and finally separated from Serbia by proclamation and recognition of independence which was in fact a real and ultimate geopolitical goal of the formally humanitarian intervention in 1999. In Sierra Leone, after a prolonged civil war, the UK government decided to send the British military forces to the country, formally to protect the UK citizens, but in fact ultimately to support the elected government against the rebel forces that have been accused of carrying out atrocities against the civilians.

Here, we came probably to the crux of the matter of current Ukrainian crisis and most probably “Ukrainian Question” in general. It is well known that Russia’s president V. Putin is extremely counter-fascinated with the NATO 1999 Kosovo humanitarian intervention as it is seen as great humiliation of Russia and Russian national proudness. It is also well known that the Euromaidan regime in Kiev committed terrible war crimes in Donbass region which can be classified as ethnic cleansing and even form of genocide as thousands of Donbass region inhabitants are brutally killed (among them around 200 kids) and approximately one million of them became refuges in Russia. For Moscow, it is very easy formally to “prove” acts of war crimes of Kiev Euromaidan junta in Donbass region as it was, similarly, very easy for Washington formally to “prove” Serbia’s war crimes in Kosovo before NATO intervention in 1999. As a result, Moscow can launch Russia’s military humanitarian intervention in the East Ukraine with a consequence of its final separation from Kiev. A “Kosovo precedent” is still on agenda and it can be legitimized even by a very historical fact that a part of the present-day East Ukraine became legally incorporated into the Russian Empire in 1654 as a consequence of the decision by the local hetman of Zaporozhian territory Bohdan Khmelnytsky (c. 1595−1657) based on a popular revolt against the Polish-Lithuanian (the Roman Catholic) occupation of Ukraine which broke out in 1648.

By Peter Tase

2016-10-31

Source: http://foreignpolicynews.org/2016/10/31/prof-vladislav-b-sotirovic-situation-ukraine/

2. Sotirovic 2013Prof. Dr. Vladislav B. Sotirovic

 Mykolas Romeris University

Faculty of Politics and Management

Institute of Political Sciences

Vilnius, Lithuania

———————————————–

Edior-In-Chief

Global Politics

www.global-politics.eu/sotirovic

globalpol@global-politics.eu

 

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Western Media Propaganda Threatens Peace and Prolongs the Deadly Conflict in Eastern Ukraine

Ukraine Imperialism

Western media is becoming unhinged as its anti-Russia propaganda struggles to keep a hold on its consumers. Two recent examples provide evidence.

Pro-peace conspiracy emanating from Moscow

On August 28, the New York Times published an article by its Moscow bureau chief about the troubling news (from the Times‘ viewpoint) that the people of Sweden are not happy with their government’s wish to join up with the NATO military alliance.

The ruling elites in Sweden and Finland have been quietly pushing for NATO membership for years. In May, the Swedish government pushed through the Riksdag a proposal for a ‘cooperation agreement’ with NATO, allowing it freer access to Swedish territory for transit and training. Finland already has such an agreement in place. In July, government leaders of the two countries proudly joined the NATO summit dinner in Warsaw.

But as a Reuters report at the time of the Warsaw summit explained, “An SvD/SIFO opinion poll showed 49 per cent of Swedes opposed joining NATO, with 33 in favor. Most Finns are against entering, and a government report said in April any such move would trigger a crisis with Russia.”

A Swedish news outlet reported on the same poll results:

“In the survey of 1000 Swedes carried out by pollsters SIFO for newspaper Svenska Dagbladet in June, 49 per cent said they did not want Sweden to join NATO, 33 per cent said yes, and 18 said they were undecided.

“The results suggest public opinion has changed since the last SIFO survey on the topic in September of 2015. In that poll, 41 per cent said they were in favour of Sweden seeking NATO membership, 39 per cent said they were against, and 20 per cent were undecided.

“At the time, the 2015 figures appeared to demonstrate a significant shift in public opinion in the traditionally non-aligned Nordic country, but SIFO’s most-recent round of results indicates that shift was short-lived.”

The Times article by Neil MacFarquharaug began, “With a vigorous national debate underway on whether Sweden should enter a military partnership with NATO, officials in Stockholm suddenly encountered an unsettling problem: a flood of distorted and outright false information on social media, confusing public perceptions of the issue.”

The source of the “confusion”? The Times headline reads, ‘A powerful Russian weapon: The spread of false stories’. The article says there is “a flood of distorted and outright false information on social media, confusing public perceptions of the issue.”

The Times writer declares a case of Russian dezinformatsiya in action. So powerful is the dezinformatsiya that it can seemingly bamboozle two of the wealthiest and most-educated populations in the world and make them act against their best interests, or at least the best advice of the New York Times, that being to join NATO.

As to the exact source of the public tripwire that Swedish government leaders have encountered, the dezinformatsiya conspiracy fades into the mists of the northern boreal forest. The Times explains, “As often happens in such cases, Swedish officials were never able to pin down the source of the false reports. But they, numerous analysts, and experts in American and European intelligence point to Russia as the prime suspect…”

Could public attitudes in Finland and Sweden towards NATO have anything to do with the historic ambivalence of Swedes and Finns to imperialist war alliances and their preference for peace over war? Apparently, the New York Times can’t climb out of its Russia conspiracy rut long enough to investigate.

According to the Global Peace Index as well as the Global Peace Index (produced annually by the Institute for Economics and Peace), Finland and Sweden score in the top 15 countries of the world in various measures of being peaceful, non-violent places to live. Could it be that the people in Sweden and Finland would like to keep things that way?

Meanwhile, here is the New York Times article’s own dezinformatsiya, in the form of a long list of alleged Russian propaganda initiatives that prove what a dastardly enemy it is:

* “Disinformation most famously succeeded in early 2014 with the initial obfuscation about deploying Russian forces to seize Crimea.”

* “… the simple truth that poorly trained insurgents had accidentally downed the [Malaysian Airlines Flight 17] plane with a missile supplied by Russia.”

* “… the Kremlin’s English-language news outlets heavily favored the campaign for [Britain] to leave the European Union, despite their claims of objectivity.”

* “Moscow’s targeting of the West with disinformation dates to a Cold War program the Soviets called ‘active measures’.”

* “[The Russian state-owned television channel] RT often seems obsessed with the United States, portraying life there as hellish.”

* “The weaponization of information is not some project devised by a Kremlin policy expert but is an integral part of Russian military doctrine…”

Reuters can’t write a truthful article

Meanwhile, the Reuters news agency published a report, also on August 28, purporting to look at the prospects for peace in Ukraine. The article is headlined, ‘Germany, Poland and France call for more efforts to end Ukraine crisis‘. Only ten brief paragraphs long, hardly a one in the article is untouched by distortions aimed at casting the best possible light on the right-wing, ultranationalist government in Kyiv and its civil war in the east of the country. Let’s read the ten paragraphs from start to finish:

The foreign ministers of Germany, France and Poland agreed on Sunday there should be greater international efforts to end the fighting in eastern Ukraine, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters.

He said there had not been sufficient progress in implementing the Minsk ceasefire agreement. Western officials were talking with Russia and Ukraine to encourage them to implement measures already agreed in the Minsk process, including communal elections, he said.

“Fighting in eastern Ukraine” is Western news-speak for “We don’t’ wish to name the protagonist in the conflict in eastern Ukraine because it happens to be our friend and ally. And what’s more, we are hoping that you don’t notice that it is the army of Ukraine that has invaded and occupied parts of Donbass in eastern Ukraine, not the other way around.”

Reuters cites Germany’s foreign minister in saying “Russia and Ukraine” should implement the Minsk-2 ceasefire agreement (signed on February 12, 2015 in the Belarus capital of Minsk). But Minsk-2 is an agreement to end a conflict between two parties in Ukraine–the governing regime in Kyiv, and the people’s republics in Donbass (Donetsk and Lugansk). The agreement spells out the precise measures to be taken on both sides, including a cessation of military hostilities, comprehensive prisoner exchanges, recognition by Kyiv of autonomy for Donetsk and Lugansk, to be followed by the holding of elections there, and so on. What does all this have to do with Russia, apart from the obvious facilitation role which Russia (and other regional powers) could fulfill? Is Russia supposed to take over Ukraine so that Minsk-2 may be implemented? How well would that go over in Berlin and Washington?

Why not “Germany and Ukraine” or “France and Ukraine” to be encouraged to implement Minsk? After all, Germany and France are among the four members of the ‘Normandy Four’ group constituted to facilitate a resolution of the crisis in Ukraine and under whose facilitation Minsk-2 was arrived at in the first place.

“We have to work for a de-escalation of the situation,” [Steinmeier] told reporters after a meeting with his counterparts aimed at reinvigorating the Weimar Triangle [Germany-France-Poland] trilateral group.

Steinmeier said the group also wanted to reassure Europeans about the continued importance and relevance of the European Union after the June 23 vote by Britain to exit the bloc.

“The Weimar Triangle can plan an important role … It is a format where we can discuss progress or the lack of progress on issues such as the Normandy format aimed at ending the Ukraine conflict,” Steinmeier said.

The Normandy group comprises Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany.

So what, exactly, have Germany and France been doing to “de-escalate” the conflict in Ukraine? Have they called on Ukraine to pull its heavy weaponry out of the ceasefire zone and cease its criminal, daily shellings of towns and cities in Donbass, in total violation of Minsk-2? No. Have they called out Ukraine for refusing to recognize the Donetsk and Lugansk republics and thereby blocking the holding of elections as required by Minsk-2? No. How about Ukraine’s failure to conduct prisoner exchanges; have Germany and France scolded Ukraine for that? No. So why is Reuters misleading its readers about Germany and France’s failure to work to “de-escalate” the conflict?

The misleading is even worse, because not only have Germany and France failed to aid in de-escalating the conflict, they are constantly adding fuel to the fire. Recently, they led the European Union in extending EU economic sanctions against Russia, including Crimea. They are silent about the provocative action of the United States, Britain and Canada in providing military training and equipping of the Ukrainian army and paramilitary irregulars, which is then applied to the illegal and criminal war against the citizens of Donbass.

Germany and France are members of the NATO alliance whose lead member, the United States, recently constructed provocative and dangerous missile bases in Romania and Poland. These bases have been built as the U.S. undertakes a massive, trillion dollars-plus upgrade of its nuclear weapons. This includes designing new delivery systems that undo the current status quo of nuclear stand-off and greatly increase the possibility of accidental unleashing of nuclear weapons.

Why can’t Reuters provide its readers with important background information of the conflict in Ukraine instead of printing bland phrases that convey exactly the opposite impression of what is really taking place?

The leaders of Russia, Germany and France have agreed to meet to discuss the situation in Ukraine on Sept. 4-5 in China on the sidelines of the G20 summit, the Kremlin said last week.

A recent surge in fighting in eastern Ukraine, where Kiev is fighting pro-Russian separatists, and fresh tension in Crimea have raised concern that a fragile ceasefire agreed in Minsk in February 2015 could collapse.

“Recent surge in fighting in eastern Ukraine” is Reuters-speak for that which not must be spoken: in recent months, Ukraine has greatly increased its criminal shellings of the people of Donbass. What’s more, Ukraine conducts an ongoing military occupation of Donetsk and Lugansk territory and it calls the self-defense forces of Donbass “terrorists”, thus showing it has absolutely no intention of reaching a political settlement.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said last week he did not rule out introducing martial law and a new wave of military mobilization if the separatist conflict worsened.

“Separatist conflict” is Kyiv-speak/Reuters-speak for obscuring and confusing the source of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, which is the refusal of Kyiv to grant the slightest decentralization of power in the highly-centralized Ukrainian constitutional setup whereby regions of Donbass could achieve a desired autonomy.

Of course, as a result of Ukraine’s prolonged and cruel war against the people of Donbass, it is highly likely that if given the chance, they would vote to secede from Ukraine to either join Russia or constitute their own independent republics. But that hardly makes them criminals or “terrorists. As a matter of fact, that would be an entirely lawful act, consistent with international law, such as it is, and consistent with recent political experience in such countries as Canada (Quebec) and the United Kingdom (Scotland).

Propaganda disguised as news or policy is the modus operandi of Western media outlets in reporting on Ukraine. It’s a major contributor to making the conflict there so intractable because it lessens the pressure that would otherwise operate on the ultra-nationalist regime in Kyiv that it cease its civil war course.

Roger Annis is a retired aerospace worker in Vancouver BC. He writes regularly for Counterpunch and compiles his writings on a ‘A Socialist in Canada’. He is an editor of the website The New Cold War: Ukraine and beyond. He can be reached at rogerannis@hotmail.com.

Source: http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/02/western-media-propaganda-threatens-peace-and-prolongs-the-deadly-conflict-in-eastern-ukraine/

Brasilians in Donbass

US Propaganda Campaign to Demonize Russia in Full Gear over One-Sided Dutch/Aussie Report on Flight 17 Downing

donbas

If the danger of the anti-Putin, anti-Russian disinformation propaganda campaign out of the Pentagon and promoted by the US corporate media weren’t so serious, the effort itself might be laughable. I did laugh.

In fact, listening last night to a discussion by an NPR host with a government spokesperson about the latest propaganda effort to blame the downing of a Malaysian jumbo jet over Ukraine on July 17, 2014 on Russia. After hearing the government official, whose name I didn’t catch, say that Dutch prosecutors had found “solid evidence” that it was a “Russian-made” BUK antiaircraft missile launched from “pro-Russian” rebel held territory in Eastern Ukraine by “pro-Russian rebels,” who then “brought the missile launcher back to Russia, the NPR host asked, laughing, how the “Russian government media” were handling this story.

I laughed because the NPR host’s report was as much a blatant piece of one-sided propaganda, replete with laughing reference to Russian media, as any “Pravda” reporting from the days of the old USSR. So thoroughly bought into his role of propagandist was this NPR host that he didn’t even realize how biased he sounded, laughing as he referred to the Russian news media. You could actually “hear” the invisible quotes he was putting around the word “news.”

I’ll leave it to the quite capable hands of veteran investigative journalist Robert Parry to eviscerate the “facts” presented by Dutch and Australian prosecutors, who as he points out in a recent article, were by their own admission relying on information provided by the Ukrainian secret service, though the Ukrainian military is really the most likely source of the missile that brought down Malaysian Flight 17 killing all 298 passengers and crew.

The most obvious reason to doubt claims that Russia and Russian separatists in Ukraine were the ones responsible for the downing of Flight 17 is that neither of those parties had anything to gain (and everything to lose) by such a horrific act of terror. At the time the plane was downed, Pro-Russian separatist forces were trouncing Ukrainian military forces trying to conquer the rebellious Donbass region. The last thing they or their backer, Russia, needed was to do something that would be guaranteed to turn all of Europe against them, and hand the US government a perfect justification for providing more offensive military support to Ukraine. On the other hand, Ukraine and its military had every reason to commit such a heinous act if they thought they could pin the blame on Russia, and win more support from the US.

No reporters with the US corporate media ever raise that crucial and obvious point.

Nor do they ever note that Russia was not only barred by the Dutch from being a party to the Dutch-led investigation into the plane’s downing, but that its repeated offers of evidence — communications intercepts, radar data and information about the the BUK missiles and missile launchers in the possession of Ukrainian military — were flatly rejected.

This was no “independent” investigation, and the prosecutors from Holland and Australia were not looking for truth. They were looking for a predetermined answer: Russia was behind this. And what a surprise! They found just that!

putin-guilty

I’m reminded of the pathetic 9-11 Commission report on the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001. That Commission was lied to by the FBI and stonewalled by the Bush/Cheney administration to the point that its own co-chairs said that they were unable to do a credible investigation into the cause of the incident or even into why the entire US intelligence apparatus and the US military were unable to detect it in the planning or to prevent it as it played out. I myself reported, based upon a source in the National Transportation Safety Administration,, the unsurprising truth that the four supposedly indestructible “black boxes” of the two planes that hit the Twin Towers, said by the FBI to have never been found in the meticulously picked through rubble, had in fact all been recovered and brought to the NTSA, but that “the FBI had taken them away.” (This source was backed up by a second source in the NY Police Department who told me he saw one of the boxes found in the rubble he was helping to search through and then be taken away in a government SUV.)

The US media have been willing accomplices in covering up the truth of 9-11, and astonishingly remiss in never seriously investigating that epic disaster, and now they are playing the same propagandistic role in trying to demonize Russia.

What makes this new propaganda campaign so dangerous is that we are headed into an election that, Trump campaign boasts aside, is likely to be won by Hillary Clinton, a woman who as President Obama’s Secretary of State engineered, directed and funded the bloody coup in Ukraine that overthrew the elected government there and replaced it with a fascist-led government that is best described as a kleptocracy. The coup government’s first act was to launch an ethnic cleansing campaign designed to drive the Russian majority population out of the eastern more industrialized part of the country. (It was that campaign that led the generations-old Russian populations of Donetsk and Lugansk to secede from Ukraine, and the 92%-Russian Crimea to ask for Russian military protection and to be re-annexed to Russia, from which it had decades ago been ceded to the Ukrainian state (soviet) by then Soviet Union Premier Khrushchev, himself a native of Ukraine.

Clinton has made no secret of her loathing of Russia, its elected leader Vladimir Putin (whom she has publicly compared to Hitler), and its foreign policy of opposing US aggression in Syria, Ukraine and other regions. It was Clinton who has been urging the aggressive forward march of NATO membership right up to Russia’s western border and the placing of nuclear-tipped anti-missile missiles on Russia’s borders. It is also Clinton who is proposing, if she becomes president, to establish a wholly illegal “no-fly” zone in Syria — a move that would put the US in the position of trying to shoot down Russian aircraft that are legally defending the Syrian government against ISIS and Al Nusra rebels. Talk about war-mongering! Clinton, if she had her way, by pitting US pilots against Russian pilots, would be inviting World War III.

Such a policy can only happen if the American people, who polls show are sick and tired of American war-making in the Middle East and elsewhere, can be convinced that Russia is simply the Soviet Union Version 2.0. A neo-con cabal in the State Department and in the Pentagon, and most of the intelligence apparatus that is so integral to US national security planning, are trying to put the word out to the willing hacks in the corporate media, that Russia should be demonized at every opportunity, so that Clinton can win this election, and then move forward with her plans to increase tensions with and military pressure against Russia.

Being a cynic, I think this is mostly about the military-industrial establishment pushing for more military spending, which of course requires either a bunch of small conflicts or a re-introduction of the Cold War. The danger though, is that cold wars can easily cross lines that turn them into hot wars, and the shooting down of either Russian or US planes by the other side would be one of those lines. This why the US establishing a no-fly zone in a country where Russian planes are already, at the invitation of the Syrian government, flying missions, is such an idiotic idea.

Most sentient Americans probably get that. Many are already wondering why the US isn’t helping Russia, given that Russia is actually fighting against the ISIS and al Nusra (al Qaeda) forces in Syria that are responsible for terror threats in Europe and the US, while the Pentagon and the CIA are providing arms and training to those same groups!. This is why the US government is working so assiduously through the corporate media to promote the propaganda lie that Russia is on the march, aggressively threatening US interests and US allies in the Middle East and Europe.

The faked report from prosecutors from two countries, Netherlands and Australia, currently led by right-wing parties blaming Russia for the downing of Flight 17 is just the latest, but surely not the last example of such brazen propaganda.

2016-09-30

Dave Lindorff is a founding member of ThisCantBeHappening!, an online newspaper collective, and is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press).

Source: CounterPunch

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Russia’s Balkan Politics: From the Politics of Pan-Slavic Reciprocity of the Tsarist Russia to the “Realpolitic” of the Republic of Gazprom Russia

800px-Imperial_Standard_of_the_Emperor_of_Russia_(1858–1917).svg

Abstract: This article investigates the Russian foreign politics at the region of the Balkan Peninsula after the dissolution of the Soviet Union at the time of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) World Order in relation to the Pan-Slavic ideals of intra-Slavic solidarity, reciprocity and brotherhood. The particular stresses are put on four main research topics: 1. The Pan-Slavism and Russia; 2. Relations between pro-Western and pro-Orthodox approaches of the Russian national interests on Russia’s domestic political scene; 3. Different attitudes towards the Balkans in Russia; and 4. Historical ties and future perspectives between Russia and the Serbs. A research methodology is based on investigation of the adequate historical sources and studying of the relevant scientific literature on the subject of our research. The main research results of the article show that: 1. Historically only (the tsarist) Russia was interested in protection of the Balkan Orthodox Slavs from any foreign power within the framework of the Pan-Slavic ideology of intra-Slavic reciprocity, solidarity and brotherhood; 2. The Balkan Orthodox nations have mostly to thank Russia for their state independence and preservation of national identities; 3. The post-Cold War Russia is only a taycoonized Gazprom Republic having no real intentions, at least until the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, to change the present day NATO’s World Order of Pax Americana; and 4. The Serbs and Serbia became the crucial victims of the post-Cold War perfect partnership in international relations between the West and the Gazprom Republic of Russia.

 Keywords: NATO, World Order, Russia, Serbs, Serbia, foreign policy, Balkans, South-East Europe, South-East Slavs, Pan-Slavism, international relations, global politics, Pax Americana

1. The Pan-Slavism and Russia

The Balkan Peninsula together with the region of the South-East Europe historically have been one of the most important focal points of the Russian foreign policy, cultural influences and attempts to spread ideology of the Orthodox solidarity and the Slavic reciprocity.[1] These ideas are common to almost all trends of the Russian public life in the past and today.

After Russia lost the Great Crimean War of 1853–1856 she intensified its cultural influence in the region of the South-East Europe for the purposes of beating the Habsburg (the Roman-Catholic) rivalry and to spread an idea of the Pan-Slavism in this part of Europe.[2] However, the Great Crimean War was in essence the British war against Russia (Figes, 2010; Lambert, 2011; Small, 2014) in order to stop further Russian victories against the Ottoman Empire (Isaacs, 2001, 156; Anisimov, 298−299). After this war it became obvious for Russia that the West European great powers[3] are her enemies, especially the United Kingdom. It will take even 50 years for Russia to sign a military-political agreement with the United Kingdom (in 1907) only after a final sharing the spheres of influence in Persia (Hans-Erich, 1985, 134).[4]

The political and economic rivalry between Russia, on one hand, and the Habsburg Monarchy (Austria-Hungary from 1867) and the German Empire (from 1871), on other, over the dominance at the Balkans was strongly affected in Russia by the growth of the Pan-Slavic sentiment, based on the common Slavic origin, mutual Paleoslavonic language, and above all it was grounded on emotional sentiment to liberate those South Slavs who were under the Ottoman yoke (Jelavich, 1991).[5] Historically, Russia had three pivotal interests in both regions the Balkans and the South-East Europe: 1) strategic, 2) cultural, and 3) religious (Castellan, 1992). It is important to stress a fact that Russia, together with the West European states, participated in the process of modernization of the eastern Balkan nations and states (Black, 1974).[6]

From a strategic point of view, the Russian diplomacy concerned the Balkans and the South-East Europe as essential for the Russian state security and above all for the stability of the Russian state frontiers.[7] The Russian intention was to obtain a favorable frontier in Bessarabia (today an independent Republic of Moldova) and to have control over the Bosporus and the Dardanelles, which became very important to the Russian commercial and economic development and geopolitical projects; in particular for the shipment of surplus grain from today Ukraine or known also as a Little Russia (Прыжов, 1869; Соловьев, 1947)[8] to the world markets.

 The Bosporus and the Dardanelles became a part of Russia’s “security zone” in both economic and political terms. The Russian main concern was to safeguard free passage through the Bosporus Straits to the Mediterranean Sea (Jelavich, 1973). Simultaneously, Russia intended to block the expansion of the other European great powers, particularly of Austria-Hungary and Germany, into the region.[9]

Taking religious and cultural aspects of the Russian interests in the Balkans and the South-East Europe, largely due to the Russian Pan-Slavic agitation, Russia succeeded to develop from 1870 a strong interest in the fate of the Balkan Slavs and the South-East European Orthodox Christians. The Pan-Slavism, based on the myth of the Slavic solidarity and primarily on the Orthodox Slavic reciprocity, which created strong ethnic, religious and cultural sentiments among the Slavic Orthodox population (but not among the Roman Catholic Slavs), became at the end of the 19th century one of the dominant driving forces behind the Russian policy in the Balkans and the South-East Europe. The myth of the Slavic solidarity and brotherhood exerted a considerable influence on many intellectuals and found support in official circles in Russia, Serbia, Montenegro and Bulgaria.[10]

The Tsarist Russia was sincerely trying all the time to reconcile the Slavic nations in conflict, especially those of the Christian Orthodox faith for the sake of the Pan-Slavic ideals of intra-Slavic solidarity, reciprocity and brotherhood. Probably the case of the Serbian-Bulgarian conflict in 1912−1915 over the Macedonian Question is the best example of such Russian policy of Panslavism. In the other words, Russia became the creator of the 1912 Serbian−Bulgarian treaty and recognized arbiter in 1912−1913 diplomatic conflict between Serbia and Bulgaria over the destiny of Macedonia after the Balkan Wars (Ћоровић, 1990а, 20−24). The Russian Balkan policy in this case was a real Panslavonic one as St. Petersburg wanted to satisfy territorial claims by both sides by negotiations and diplomatic agreement between Sofia and Belgrade. When Austria-Hungary declared war to Serbia on July 23rd, 1914 all Entente member states, including and Russia, were making pressure on Serbia to give territorial compensation (the Vardar Macedonia) to Bulgaria for the Bulgarian participation in the war against the Central Powers. Serbia was promised, like in the secret 1915 London Treaty, territorial concessions in the Western Balkans populated by the ethnic Serbs living in the Dual Monarchy. For instance, a Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sazonov, on August 5th, 1914 urged the Serbian Government to give to Bulgaria Macedonian territories up to the line Kriva Palanka−Ohrid with Struga for Bulgarian active participation in the war against Austria-Hungary and towns of Shtip, Radovishte and the lands up to Vardar river for Bulgarian “friendly neutrality”. For such Serbia’s sacrifice, Russia promised to Belgrade to support Serbia at the end of the war in realization of her “national ideals”. However, Sazonov was clear in this case that Serbia by giving such territorial sacrifice is going to very contribute to the Russian “life wish” to establish the Panslavonic fraternity and eternal friendship between the Serbs and Bulgarians (Радојевић, Димић, 2014, 138). The same territorial requirements to Serbia were vainly repeated once again by the Entente member states in 1915 before Bulgaria finally joined the war on the side of the Central Powers in October of the same year (Avramovski, 1985, 55−172; Трубецки, 1994, 21−158).

2. The Post-Cold War Russia between the “Westernizers” and the Patriots”

With the official end of the Cold War (1949−1989),[11] the Balkans, especially the question of the destiny of the former Yugoslavia, reemerged as one of the major concerns in Russia.[12] However, in fact, for the NATO and its leader – the USA, the Cold War is still on agenda of the global arena as after 1991 the NATO’s expansion and politics is directed primarily against Russia (Thompson, 1998) but China as well. Nevertheless, a fact that the NATO was not dissolved after the end of the Soviet Union (regardless on all official explanations why) is the crucial argument for our opinion that the Cold War is still reality in the world politics[13] and the international relations.

It has to be noticed that the USSR was simply dissolved by one man-decision – the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, who, concerning this matter, made a crucial deal in October 1986 with the US administration at two-days bilateral meeting with the US President Ronald Reagan in Reykjavik in Iceland (Wilson, 2014; Adelman, 2014). It is a matter of fact that the USSR was the only empire in the world history which became simply dissolved by its own government as the rest of the world empires were destroyed either from the outside after the lost wars or from the inside after the bloody civil wars or revolutions.[14]

In our opinion, there were three main hypothetical reasons for Gorbachev’s decision to simply dissolve the Soviet Union:

  1. Personal bribing of Gorbachev by the western governments (the USA and the EC).

  2. Gorbachev’s wish, as the first and the only ethnic Russian ruler of the USSR to prevent a further economic exploitation of the Russian federal unit by the rest of the Soviet republics that was a common practice since the very beginning of the USSR after the Bolshevik (an anti-Russian) Revolution and the Civil War of 1917−1921.

  3. Gorbachev’s determination to transform Russian Federation, which will firstly get rid of the rest of the Soviet tapeworm republics, into economically prosperous and well-to-do country by selling its own Siberia’s natural resources (gas and oil) to the West according to the global market prices.

In order not to spoil very good business relations with the West the Russian foreign policy during the last 23 years, up to the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, was totally soft and even subservient to the West to whose mercy Moscow left the rest of the world including and the ex-Soviet republics with at least 25 million of the ethnic Russian population outside the motherland. For the matter of comparison, Belgrade in 1991 also left all other Yugoslav republics to leave the federation free of charge, at least for the second Gorbachev’s reason to dissolve the USSR, but with one crucial difference in comparison with the Russian case in the same year: the ethnic Serbs outside Serbia were not left at mercy, at least not as free of charge, to the governments of the newly (an anti-Serb) proclaimed independent states emerged on the wreck of (an anti-Serb and dominated by Croatia and Slovenia) ex-Yugoslavia.[15] That was the main sin by Serbia in the 1990s and for that reason she was and still is sternly fined by the West.[16]

Russia’s policy and attitude towards the South Slavs in the Balkans after the dissolution of the USSR is a part of a larger debate over Russia’s “national interest” and even over the Russian new identity (Laruelle, 2012). Since 1991, when its independence was formalized and internationally recognized, Russia has been searching for both her national identity and foreign policy.

The intellectual circles in Russia have debated very much over the content of the Russian national self-identity for centuries. On the one hand, there were/are those who believe that the Russian culture is a part of the European culture and as such the Russian culture can accept some crucial (West) European values in its development, especially from the time of the emperor Peter the Great (1672−1725).[17] This group, we could call them as  the “Westernizers”, have never negated the existence of Russia’s specific characteristics as an Eurasian country, but have always believed that staying within the framework of the “Russian spectrum” is equivalent to the national suicide (a “fear of isolation” effect). On the other hand, there are those who have tried to preserve all traditional Russian forms of living and organizing, including both political and cultural features of the Russian civilization, not denying at the same time that Russia is a European country too. This, we can name them as the “patriotic” group, or the “Patriots”, of the Slavic orientation, partly nationalistically oriented, have believed and still believe that the (West) European civilizational and cultural values can never be adjusted to the Russian national character and that it is not necessary at all for the Russian national interest (a “fear of self-destruction” effect).

A confrontation of these two groups characterizes both the Russian history and the present-day political and cultural development. Very similar situation is, for instance, in Serbia today as the society is sharply divided into the so-called “First” (“patriotic”) and the “Second” (“western”) Serbia supporters.

At the moment, the basic elements of the Russian national identity and state policy are:

  1. The preservation of Russia’s territorial unity.

  2. The protection of Russia’s interior integrity and its external (state) borders.

  3. The strengthening of Russia’s statehood particularly against the post-Cold War NATO’s Drang nach Osten policy.

It means that the post-Soviet Russia (the Gazprom Republic of the “Power of Siberia”) rejected, at least for some time, the most significant element in her foreign policy that has historically been from the time of the emperor Ivan the Terrible (1530−1584) the (universal) imperial code – constant expansion of its territory or, at least, the position of a power that cannot be overlooked in the settlement of strategic global matters.[18] Therefore, after the Cold War Russia accepted the US’ global role of the new world Third Rome.[19] For the matter of illustration, the US had 900 military bases in 2014 in 153 countries around the world.

From historical point of view, it can be said that the US’ imperialism started in 1812 when the US’ administration proclaimed the war to Great Britain in order to annex the British colony of Canada (Parks, 1986, 182−202). However, the protagonists of a “Hegemonic stability theory” argue that “a dominant military and economic power is necessary to ensure the stability and prosperity in a liberal world economy. The two key examples of such liberal hegemons are the UK during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and the USA since 1945” (Heywood, 2011, 229).

At the present stage of Russia’s history, characterized by very harmonious (symphonic) economic and political relations with the West, at least up to the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, especially with Germany, Russia in fact became a political colony of the West which is seen in Moscow eyes only as a good source for making money. The results of such kind of Russia-West relations are Russian tourists all over the world, an impressive Russian state gold reserves (500 billion €), buying real estate properties all over the Mediterranean littoral by the Russians, huge Russian financial investments in Europe and finally, Russian authorization of the NATO’s and the EU’s aggressive foreign policy that is mostly visible exactly at the Balkans.

Russia’s foreign policy is surely a part of her national and cultural identity as for any other state in history. From 1991 up to at least 2014, Moscow accepted the western academic and political propaganda as a sort of the “new facts” that:

  1. Russia is reportedly no longer a global super or even military power, although its considerable military potential is undeniable and very visible.

  2. Russia allegedly has no economic power, although it has by very fact an enormous economic potential.

  3. Russia, as a consequence, cannot have any significant political influence which could affect the new international relations established after 1989/1991, i.e. the NWO (the NATO’s World Order), or better to say – the Pax Americana.[20]

It made Russia a western well paid client state as in essence no strategic questions can be solved without Russian permission, however for certain sum of money or other way of compensation. For instance, the Kosovo status was solved in 2008 between Russia and the NATO/EU on exactly this way as Russia de facto agreed to Kosovo self-proclaimed independence (as the US’s client territory or colony) for in turn the western also de facto agreement to the South Ossetian and Abkhazian self-proclaimed independence as in fact the Russian client territories or colonies.[21]

Russia as a country is unpredictable when it is isolated, and its unpredictability can be dangerous for the surrounding regions as well as for the global international relations. This thesis has had its confirmation in the events concerning the conflicts in both former Yugoslavias (the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia – the SFRY and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia – the FRY), and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (the FYROM). The cultural, religious and historic ties with the Orthodox Slavs who live in the Balkans (together with the western money) determine the Russian attitude and politics towards the political challenges in the South-East Europe during the last decades especially what concerns the Orthodox Slavs in Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo-Metohija and Macedonia (i.e., the Serbs, Montenegrins and Macedonians).[22]

In Russia emerged after Gorbachev’s dissolution of the Soviet Union two ideological-political streams in the general debate in the Russian society about the national interest. The first emphasizes the importance of Russia’s long-standing ethnic, cultural and religious ties with the Balkan peoples, especially with the Serbs, Montenegrins, Bulgarians and Macedonians.[23] The second stresses the importance of the good ties with the West and integration of Russia into a broader Euro-Atlantic framework.

Since Russia formally has lost all the attributes of a super power after the dissolution of the Soviet Union (up to 2014), her political elite has in the early 1990s become oriented towards closer association with the institutional structures of the West – in accordance with her officially general drift towards liberal-democratic reform (in fact towards the tycoonization of the whole society and politics, like in all East European transitional countries). Till 1995 Russia had become a member of almost all structures of the NATO, even of the “Partnership for Peace Programme” what is telling the best about the real aims of the Gazprom Russia’s foreign policy up to 2014 when Russia finally decided to defend her own national interest, at least at the doorstep (i.e., in the East Ukraine) of her own home. In May 1997 Russia signed the “NATO’s−Russia Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security”, what meant de facto that she accepted the NATO as the core of the Euro-Atlantic system of security.

For the matter of comparison with the USA, in October 1962, at the height of the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union came to the brink of a real nuclear war over the placement of the USSR’s missiles in the island of Cuba – a courtyard (not even a doorstep) of the USA. It was the closest moment the World ever came to unleashing the WWIII (Kennedy, 1999; Munton, 2006; Dobbs, 2008; Pardoe, 2013). In the other words, during the Cuban missile crisis of 1962 Kennedy’s administration was ready to invade the independent state of Cuba (with already the US’ military base on the island) and even to go to the WWIII against the USSR if necessary as Washington understood Cuba as a courtyard of the USA.

Whether or not the ruling structures in Russia had expected a more important role for their country in its relations with the new partners, since 1995 there has been certain stagnation in the relations with the West, accompanied by the insistence on the national interests of Russia. In practice, this was manifested in the attempts to strengthen the connections with the Commonwealth of the Independent States (the CIS) with which Russia had more stable and secure relations. However, the state of relations within the CIS, accompanied with a very difficult economic and politically unstable situation in some of the countries in the region, prevented any organizational or other progress in this direction. Still, the CIS has remained the primary strategic focus for Russia, especially when it comes to the insolent expansion of the NATO towards these countries (the NATO’s Drang nach Osten).

3. Russia, the West and ex-Yugoslavia

An economic and political situation in Russia, the changes, the rate and the content of her fitting into the existing international relations influenced Russia’s attitude towards the wars on the territories of the former SFRY. Since the beginning of the disintegration of the SFRY, Russia has taken very diplomatic position that these conflicts are the Yugoslav domestic (inner) affairs and consequently should be settled peacefully, without the use of force, with the United Nations (the UN) or the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (the OSCE) as the mediator organizations.[24] Russia kept this official position throughout all wars in Yugoslavia, till the end of the military conflict in Kosovo-Metohija in June 1999, but even and during the NATO’s military occupation of Kosovo-Metohija followed by the expulsion of majority of the ethnic Serbs and all other non-Albanian ethnicities by the Albanians from the region from 1999 up today (March Pogrom…, 2004; Чупић, 2006).[25]

In a view of Russia’s position in Europe and the world (especially in relation to the USA), characterized by her need and wish to become at least a respectable partner to the most developed countries, Russia was until 2014 blindly following the decisions of her “partners” from the West, especially at the time of the “western clown of Boris Yeltsin”[26] in the global politics. For instance, Russia recognized Croatia and Slovenia in February 1992 as independent states; in May 1992 she did the same with the FYROM and in August of the same year with Bosnia-Herzegovina. Although Russia was formally on the side of Serbia and the Serbs during the time of the dissolution (destruction) of ex-Yugoslavia in the 1990s, mainly because of deep historic, cultural and political linkages with the Serbs, Moscow actually accepted the decisions of its western partners and followed their obviously anti-Serb Balkan policy (Guskova, 1996). Such attitude was the result of her orientation towards the policy of getting closer to the European economic, political and security institutions, but above all to the European market. For Russia, the Balkans is still just a part of her European (economic) strategy, but not the main task of her European (political) policy.

This is quite similar with the case of the NATO’s military aggression on the FRY in 1999 for the real reason to occupy and separate Kosovo-Metohija from Serbia for the final sake of creation of a Greater Albania (Hadjimichalis, 2000).[27] Formally, Russia remained resolute in her demand that the conflict in Kosovo-Metohija had to be resolved in the Security Council of the UN or in the OSCE, but in fact nothing did to really help the Serbs in their legitimate struggle against the Albanian secessionist nationalism and the US’ imperialism – exactly what Washington and Brussels wanted and needed from Moscow at that time. From the very fact, when several western countries decided to intervene against the FRY in March 1999, Russia did nothing concrete to change that decision, although Moscow nominally disagreed because there was no formal decision in the Security Council of the UN and she was against the use of force in regional ethno-political conflicts in general. In fact, the Russian pro-western tycoon authorities did not wish to get directly involved in the conflict in Kosovo-Metohija in order to keep very prosperous economic relations with the West. Formally, during the NATO’s military aggression on the FRY (much more on Serbia than on Montenegro) Russia tried to sustain contacts with Serbia. These attempts met with the approval of a part of the public, which, along with the nationally oriented intellectual and political elite, was pushing Russia into a conflict with the West, with the USA in particular, for the matter to defend the Orthodox Slavs in the Balkans as historically Russia was a natural, and even recognized, protector of them during the time of the existence of the Ottoman Empire.

For the matter of fact, the Russian protection of the Balkan and the South-East European Orthodox population started with the Treaty of Küçük Kajnarca of July 21st, 1774 with the Ottoman Empire when Russia got the right to establish within the Ottoman Empire her own diplomatic consulates in Iaşi and Bucharest, and to make representations on behalf of the Orthodox Moldavia and Walachia (today parts of Romania) in Istanbul (Magocsi, 2002, 72). The Russian Empire by this treaty even became a protector of all Balkan Christian nations especially the Orthodox (Поповић, 1940; Радојевић, 2014, 114).

During the Kosovo Crisis and War of 1998−1999 the relations between Russia and the USA became the worst since the end of the Cold War period, but in essence nothing was changed after the war in relations between Russia and the West.[28]

Nevertheless, the Russian participation with the NATO in international contingent of the “peace-keeping” forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina (the IFORS/SFOR) and Kosovo-Metohija (the KFOR) shows that (Gazprom) Russia became highly opportunistic and even smarmy to the West as she consciously accepted to participate in these NATO’s military missions only for the reason to internationally legalize the new NATO’s World Order (Pax Americana) that is obviously on the first place de facto anti-Russian.[29] It is very unconvincing explanation by the Russian “Westernizers” that this decision to participate in the NATO’s “peace-keeping missions” in the Balkans in the 1990s was for Moscow only possibility to “prove” that Russia is still not out from the arena of international politics of the great (western) powers and to have some influence in the region. However, it is known that this participation (till 2003) was under the full-scale dictate of the NATO what is clearly visible from at least three facts:

  1. Russia did not get its own sectors of protection and command either in Bosnia-Herzegovina or Kosovo-Metohija nevertheless Russia required them. The territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina was divided into three sectors of protection: the Canadian, the US, and the French, while Kosovo-Metohija into five: the British, the Italian, the French, the German and the US. However, it was no single Russian one.

  2. A brigade of the Russian peace-keepers has been based in Bosnia-Herzegovina in the US’ sector, the Multinational Division North, since January 1996, numbering only some 1,200 airborne troops. The Russian zone of responsibility was running between the predominantly “Croat and Muslim Federation” of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the predominantly “Serb Republic”. However, about 30 US’ soldiers were permanently stationed at the Russian brigade’s headquarters in Ugljevik (the North-Eastern Bosnia-Herzegovina) while the Russian peace-keeping troops were in fact under the US’s supervision and command. In this respect, can you imagine the US’ military brigade under the Russian supervision and command in Afghanistan or Iraq? We have also to notice that in 1877 Russia entered the war against the Ottoman Empire because of Bosnia-Herzegovina (the so-called “Great Eastern Crisis”) and even the First World War in 1914 after the “Sarajevo Assassination” and Austria-Hungary’s ultimatum to the Kingdom of Serbia (Радојевић, Димић, 2014, 113−114).[30] However, it was an imperial Romanovs’ Russia (not at all in much better position to the western great powers as today Russia is), but not the Gazprom one. In July−August 1914 Serbia could see and feel who was her a real and only friend (even the “mother”) in Europe what was very proved in the Great War until the very end of the Romanov’s Imperial Russia (i.e., until the 1917 March Revolution). In the other words, Russia risked everything, even not properly prepared for the war at all, in order to give a crucial help to unprotected Serbia – a country facing at that time a real possibility to disappear from the map of Europe as a state and political reality.[31] We have to notice on this place a very fact that when Serbia received a war proclamation by the Dual Monarchy on July 23rd, 1914 she had only two formal (by treaty) allies: Montenegro and Greece from 1912. However, only Montenegro put into effect its treaty obligations, while Greece interpreted the 1913 Military Convention with Serbia on the way that Greece was obliged to give a military assistance to Serbia only in the case of a war proclamation by Bulgaria to Serbia but not and by Austria-Hungary (Радојевић, Димић, 2014, 136).[32] However, at the time of the Austro-Hungarian war declaration to Serbia, Russia did not have any formal (treaty) obligations to Serbia to help her but regardless to this fact Russia proclaimed a military mobilization in order to protect Serbia from the aggressive Germanic Drang nach Osten policy at the Balkans. The Russian military mobilization became just a pretext to Germany to declare the (Great) war against Russia (on August 1st, 1914) and against France (on August 3rd, 1914) (Palmowski, 2004, 693).

  3. The Russian peace-keeping contingent in Kosovo-Metohija of some 3,150 soldiers (out from total 45,000 international NATO’s troops in Kosovo-Metohija) was deployed in three sectors: in the US-led Multinational Brigade East, in the French-led Multinational Brigade North, and in the German-led Multinational Brigade South. In June 1999, when the NATO’s troops occupied Kosovo-Metohija, the NATO’s headquarters in Brussels decisively rejected the Russian demand that Russia should have her own sector of protection in Kosovo-Metohija. We also have not to forget that the Russian troops (came from Bosnia-Herzegovina) occupied the Prishtina airport in June 1999 before the NATO’s troops from the south reached the administrative centre of Kosovo-Metohija. That was at the moment a greatest victory of Russia over the West from the time of dissolution of the Soviet Union. However, very soon the same Russian troops left the Prishtina airport under the western pressure what shows at the best a real self-wanted position of (Gazprom) Russia in the NATO’s World Order after the end of the Cold War (1949−1989). Consequently, Moscow in 2001 left Afghanistan in full mercy of the US’ occupation – the land which was only three decades ago (in 1979) understood by Kremlin as exclusively its own sphere of dominance without any western interference.[33]

Obviously, only limited and formal Russian participation in the so-called “peace-keeping forces” in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo-Metohija, that is in fact just international legalization of the NATO’s occupation of these lands, is accepted by the NATO’s headquarters as it gives the NATO a legitimacy of “human rights protection” in the Balkans. Following its orientation towards the “well-to-do Russian home”, combined with her new national security concept of protecting Russia’s state borders, but without crossing them in international relations (up to 2008 informal war with Georgia and especially the Russian direct military involvement in Syrian conflict in 2015), Russia was trying to achieve the optimum of such kind of politics – to play a role of a formally respectable power on the international scene which will take its part in the most significant strategic changes in the world done by the NATO’s and the US’ administrations followed by their crucial European client – the European Union (the EU) for the sake of keeping perfect economic relations with the West. However, the 2014 Ukrainian crisis clearly shows that for the West any kind of Russia’s defense of her own national interest around the globe, including and on the doorstep of her own home, is simply seen as a form of a new Russian imperialism (Mankoff, 2011; Herpen, 2014; Lucas, 2014).

Russia’s attitude towards the “Serb Republic” in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and the FYROM was up to 2014 regarded in the contexts of her attempts to put into practice her common westernization policy with the ultimate goal to integrate Russia into the western political scope and system.[34] Having in mind this, it was quite predictable before the 2014 Ukrainian crisis that the Russian military forces could participate in the future in the NATO-led international peace keeping forces in the FYROM (MACFOR), Vojvodina (VOJDFOR) or Sanjak (SANDFOR) under the same conditions as it was in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo-Metohija.

For the matter of better clarification, Serbia’s northern region of Vojvodina, populated by the Serb majority and non-Serb minority (predominantly the Hungarian one) and her south-west region of Sanjak (in Serbian language Raška), populated by mixed Orthodox Serbian and Muslim Bosniak population (ethno-linguistic Serbs of Shtokavian language who became voluntary converted into Islam during the Ottoman rule) (Вуковић, 1911; Костић, 1955),[35] are scheduled by the West (the USA, the NATO, the EU) as the next regions of separation at the Balkans where the western peace-keeping troops are going to be located if Russia would surrender to the West in the case of Ukraine. Thus, such Russian role in the Balkan affairs fits to the ideas of the main Russian proponents of the so-called “Atlantic’s School” (for instance, a former Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Andrey Kozyrev), which tends to play down the idea of Russia as the protector of the (Orthodox) Slavs in the South-East Europe.

15 balkans_1856The Balkans in 1856

However, on the other hand, the Russian “Westernizers” emphasize the crucial importance of co-operating with the West for the Russian economic and cultural development in the future. Subsequently, they explicitly reject a policy based on the ethnic, religious and cultural ties with the Balkan Orthodox Slavs, particularly with the Serbs. Absolutely the same situation is and with the Serbian “Westernizers” (the “Second Serbia”) who are rejecting any ties with Kosovo-Metohija for the sake of Serbia’s (i.e., remains of Serbia) “prosperity” in the (western) future. It was quite visible either during the process of dissolution (or better to say – destruction) of the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s or after that up today.[36]

The myths of a fundamental Slavic brotherhood and the pan-Slavic solidarity, based on common Slavic origin and language, and especially with the Orthodox South Slavs, based on shared culture and the same religion is by now put aside as an ancient history by Moscow. It was visible, at least, twice in relations to the Serbs: 1) when the Parliament of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia proclaimed a state unity with Russia in 1999 during the NATO’s aggression, and 2) when Kosovo-Metohija’s Serbs (around 90,000) required Russia’s citizenship in 2011. However, Moscow in both cases simply was deaf, regardless on the fact that it would be a perfect opportunity and formal excuse for Russia to do really something for the Serbs and to stop a NATO’s military machinery at the Balkans.

Nevertheless, some of influential Russia’s political leaders and representatives are still ardent to the ideology of the Pan-Slavic common ethno-linguistic origin, cultural reciprocity, solidarity and brotherhood – at least formally. For instance, during a visit to Serbia in January 1994 Vladimir Zhirinovsky warned the West that any attack on Serbia or Bosnian-Herzegovinian Serbs would be considered by the Russians as an attack on Russia herself.[37] However, when it happened in reality in 1995 and 1999 Russia did simply nothing to protect Krayina’s and Bosnian-Herzegovinian Serbs (in 1995) and Serbia (in 1999). It is interesting that on the same occasion he called for a union of all Slavic nations from “Knin to Vladivostok”. Zhirinovsky was at that time also the main advocator of a radical revision of the political map of Europe, especially in the South-East Europe. In the other words, in his conception of reshaping the political map of Europe, the new (Russian) order in the South-East Europe has to be based on the (by now utopian) “Slavic pyramid” as:

  1. Bosnia-Herzegovina would be divided between a Greater Serbia and a Greater Croatia.

  2. A Greater Bulgaria would be created with its capital in Sofia.

  3. Greece would be given parts of European Turkey.

  4. Hungary would get back Transylvania from Romania.

It is quite predictable that the idea of the Pan-Slavic solidarity, reciprocity and brotherhood will be put on agenda of the Russian national interest if the Russian “Patriots” and the “Pan-Slavic nationalists” gained political power in Russia (we do not consider Putin’s regime as a real patriotic one). In this case, the concept of reshaping the South-East Europe on the model of some kind of the “Slavic pyramid” will surely play a significant role in the Russian foreign policy.

Nevertheless, there would be a very little chance for the Roman Catholic Slavs to accept such political program as they are firstly the Roman Catholics and only than the Slavs as the Yugoslav experience shows. In the other words, Vatican will never agree that the Roman Catholics are going to be governed by the Orthodox Christians (Екмечић, 2010, 516). On the other hand, during the Great War of 1914−1918 a Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Dmitrievich Sazonov (1910−1916) was explicitly advising Serbia’s ambassador to Russia, dr. Miroslav Spalajković (1913−1919) that any state combination with the Roman Catholic Slovenes and Croats would be political disaster for Serbia as Slovenes and Croats will be all the time just Vatican’s separatist fifth column and trouble makers in any kind of Yugoslavia.[38] In reality, as a matter of historical fact, both the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and Josip Broz’s Titoslavia were destroyed with a great help of Vatican exactly by the Roman Catholic Croats (who were strongly supported by the Roman Catholic Slovenes in the case of destruction of Titoslavia in 1989−1991).[39]

4. Conclusions

At the end we will express several basic conclusions in relations to the topic of contemporary Russian relations with the Balkans, or better to say, to the debate of the main issue of the present-day Russian foreign policy – between the West and herself:

  • The post-Soviet Russia was at least until 2014 Ukrainian crisis politically very deeply involved in the western system of international relations and cultural values that was basically giving to Moscow a status of the western client partner on the international scene of the NATO’s World Order.

  • A full victory of the Russian “Westernizers” up to 2014 allow them to further westernize Russia according to the pattern of the Emperor Peter the Great with the price of Russia’s inferiority and even servility in the international relations. For that reason, the West already succeeded (at least up to 2014) to encircle Russia with three rings of Russia’s enemies: the NATO at the West, the Muslim Central Asian states at the South and China at the South-East.

  • The West was buying Russia’s inferiority at the international scene by keeping perfect economic relations with Moscow that was allowing Russia, especially Russia’s tycoons, to become enormously reach. These harmonious West-Russia political-economic relations are going to be broken in the future only under two circumstances: I. If the Russian “Patriots” with take political power in Kremlin (after the military putsch or new revolution?), or II. If the West will introduce any kind of serious economic sanctions against Russia (i.e. to restrict importing Russian gas and oil or to limit business operations of the Russian oil and gas companies outside Russia).

  • Up to now, the South-East Europe is left to the western hands by Moscow and the region is already incorporated into the NATO’s World Order as a part of the western (the NATO & the EU) post-Cold War concept of the Central and East Europe as a buffer zone against Russia.[40]

  • Russia in this region has only and exclusively economic-financial interest (the “Southern Stream”, investments, buying the real estate properties, selling her own products, etc.). The region was becoming more and more under the Russian direct financial control. As one of the best examples is Montenegro with 40% of the Russian investment out of total foreign one.

  • The only political and national losers at the Balkans, as the outcome of such West-Russia post-Soviet relations, are the Serbs who as a nation have been expelled from Croatia and lost their Republic of Serbian Krayina, lost 20% of their ethno-historical land in Bosnia-Herzegovina, lost Kosovo-Metohija and will lose Vojvodina and Sanjak in the near future if Russia will lose a current battle for Ukraine (or the Little Russia). In this case, the state territory of Serbia, according to the western designers from the very end of the Cold War era, would be reduced to the borders of the so-called Bismarck’s Serbia (or Bismarck’s paşalik) after the Congress of Berlin in 1878 up to the Balkan Wars of 1912−1913.[41]

  • The essential historical disadvantage of Serbia and the Serbs as a nation was and still is that they did not have and do not have a common state borders with (the tsarist) Russia and Russians – the only European great power nation and state who never humiliated Serbia and the Serbs and the only nation and state in the world to whom the Serbs have to really thank for the preservation of their national identity and state independence.

 

Jpeg

Prof. Dr. Vladislav B. Sotirović

Mykolas Romeris University

Institute of Political Sciences

Vilnius, Lithuania

www.global-politics.eu/sotirovic

globalpol@global-politics.eu

 

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Владислав Б. Сотировић

БАЛКАНСКА ПОЛИТИКА РУСИЈЕ:

ОД ПОЛИТИКЕ СВЕСЛОВЕНСКЕ УЗАЈАМНОСТИ ЦАРСКЕ РУСИЈЕ ДО „РЕАЛ-ПОЛИТИКЕ“ РЕПУБЛИКЕ ГАЗПРОМ РУСИЈЕ

Резиме

У овом чланку се истражује спољна политика Русије на Балкану након нестанка Совјетског Савеза у времену светског поретка који диктира НАТО пакт а у вези са идеалима панславизма, међусловенске солидарности, узајамности и братства. Посебан нагласак је стављен на следеће четири најбитније истраживачке теме: 1. Панславизам и Русија; 2. Однос између прозападних и проправославних снага на политичкој сцени Русије по питању руског националног интереса; 3. Различити приступи руској балканској политици у Русији; и 4. Руско-српски повесни односи и перспективе у будућности односа Русије и Срба. Методологија истраживања је заснована на коришћењу адекватних повесних источника и релевантне стручне литературе везане за тематику чланка. Главни резултати нашег истраживања показују да: 1. Историјски посматрано, само је (царска) Русија била заинтересована да заштити балканске Словене православне хришћанске оријентације од било које стране силе а у оквиру политике свесловенства и идеологије засноване на међусловенској узајамности и братству; 2. Балканске православне нације могу пре свега да захвале Русији на својим независним државама и очувању свог националног идентитета; 3. Русија након Хладног рата није ништа друго него тајкунизована Газпром Република која нема стварних намера, бар до украјинске кризе 2014. г., да нарушава тренутни светски поредак НАТО пакта – амерички мир; и 4. Срби и Србија су постали главне жртве овако идеалних партнерских односа на међународном плану након Хладног рата између Запада и Републике Газпром Русије.

Кључне речи: НАТО, светски поредак, Русија, Срби, Србија, спољна политика, Балкан, Југоисточна Европа, Јужни Словени, панславизам, међународни односи, глобална политика, амерички мир

ENDNOTES

[1] The Balkans is a peninsula in the South-East Europe that today includes Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Greece, Albania, Macedonia (the FYROM), Bulgaria and the European portion of Turkey. The South-East Europe is enlarged Balkans with Romania and Moldova.

[2] The Balkans was all the time a peninsula of a clash of civilizations. According to Samuel P. Huntington, a civilization is a cultural entity and he identified eight such civilizations. One of them was the Slavic-Orthodox. Civilizations differ in terms of history, language, culture, tradition but above all religion. Huntington argued that every civilization had and has a protector core state as, for instance, Russia historically was and today is a protector of the Slavic-Orthodox civilization (Mansbach, Taylor, 2012, 447).

[3] Great power was originally in the 18th century the term for a European state which could not be conquered by any other state or even by several of them. After the WWII this term is applied to a country that is regarded as among the most powerful in the global system and global politics (Mansbach, Taylor, 2012, 578).

[4] The British-Russian convention over Persia in 1907 divided the country into a northern section under the Russian influence, a neutral part in the middle, and a southern zone under the UK’s influence (Palmowski, 2004, 304).

[5] About the Pan-Slavism, see in (Kohn, 1960).

[6] About the Russian history, see in (Riasanovsky, 2006).

[7] About Russia’s foreign policy interests, see in (Tsygankov, 2013; Gvosdev, 2014).

[8] About Ukraine-Russian identity relations, see in (Plokhy, 2008; Plokhy, 2010).

[9] About the spiritual and geopolitical rivalry in the Balkans by the great European powers, see in (Поповић, 1940; Narochnitskaya, 1998). According to Lord Palmerston, the nations (states) have no permanent enemies and allies; they have only permanent interests (Cooper, Heine, Thakur, 2015, 72).

[10] For instance, about Russia’s influence in Serbia from the end of the 18th century to the mid-19th century, see in (Попов, 1870).

[11] The Cold War was the struggle and conflict between the USA and its allies, including supporters of the capitalism, engaged in ideological and political warfare against the USSR and its allies, advocates of the communism, an alternative and incompatible, economic and political system (Mansbach, Taylor, 2012, 102).

[12] About history of the Cold War, see in (Lewis, 2005; Zubok, 2007).

[13] World or global politics is political interactions between and among sovereign (independent) states as well as nonstate actors (ex., the NGOs).

[14] About the end of the USSR, see in (Plokhy, 2014).

[15] About different opinions on the nature of Yugoslavia, see in (Allcock, 2000; Sabrina, 2006).

[16] About the wars of Yugoslavia’s succession in the 1990s, see in (Trifunovska, 1994; Woodwards, 1995; Ullman, 1996; Oven, 1996; Marković, 1996; Guskova, 2003; Sotirović, 2013a).

[17] About Peter the Great and his reforms in Russia, see in (Hughes, 2000; Cracraft, 2003).

[18] About the idea of the Holy Russia as a Third Rome, see in (Johnson, 2004).

[19] About the US’ post-Cold War imperialism and global hegemony, see in (Kiernan, 2005; Baron, 2014).

[20] The Pax Americana is a key phenomenon of the post-Cold War era as an informal the US’ empire whose tenets lie in the global capitalist trading system which reached across the globe. After 1991 the USA became a single state in the world with a global hegemonic ambitions and capacities, at least up to 2014. “The core feature of the Pax Americana is a multilateral system of global governance” (Atlagić, 2015, 32).  About the Pax Americana, see in (Dorrien, 2004; Clarke, 2008; Parchami, 2009; Roncallo, 2014). On the remaking of the World Order, see (Huntington, 2002; Kissinger, 2014). On the post-Cold War US-Russia’s relations up to the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, see in (Stent, 2014). In essence, the Pax Americana is nothing else then a synonym for a post-Cold War New World Order: “A term coined by George Bush Snr following the successful expulsion of Iraq from Kuwait in the first Gulf War…the idea that New World Order was short-hand for US policy preferences and further American imperialism” (Haynes, et al, 2013, 712).

[21] About the “Kosovo precedent” and the ethnopolitical conflicts in the Caucasus, see in (Weller, 2009; Tsurtsumia, 2010; Hehir, 2010; Francis, 2011; Souleimanov, 2013; Sotirović, 2013b).

[22] About Russia’s foreign policy, see in (Donaldson, 2014). About Russia and her closest neighbours, see in (Szajkowski, 1994; Hungtington, 2011, 151−155). About Russia and the Balkans after 1991, see in (Ekinci, 2013).

[23] About the Montenegrin ethnic origin and identity, see in (Glomazić, 1988; Lazarević, 2014). On the problem who are the Macedonians and the “Macedonian Question”, see in (Martis, 1984; Poulton, 2000; Pettifer, 2001; Damianopoulos, 2012).

[24] Russia strongly opposed an official western stereotyped standpoint on the fundamental causes of the destruction of ex-Yugoslavia. According to this view, a personality of Serbia’s President Slobodan Milošević and his political idea to create a Greater Serbia was the main cause of the destruction of the country followed by the bloody war (Mansbach, Taylor, 2012, 442)

[25] About the “Kosovo Question”, see in (Grujić, 2014).

[26] About Boris Yeltsin and Russia in his time, see in (Colton, 2008; Curtis, 2014).

[27] About the NATO’s military intervention in 1999 against Serbia and Montenegro, see in (Gibbs, 2009; Phillips, 2012).

[28] About this issue, see more in (Headley, 2008).

[29] About the globalization of the NATO pact, see in (Kitchen, 2010; Nazemroaya, 2012).

[30] About discussion on the origins of the WWI, see in (Бјелајац, 2014). It has to be noticed on this place that the assassination of Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Fedinand and his wife Sophia in Sarajevo on June 28th, 1914 that triggered the Great War as an excuse for the Dual Monarchy to formally declare war to Serbia (Ћоровић, 1990b, 79) was organized and committed by the conspiratorial revolutionary underground organization from Bosnia-Herzegovina – the Young Bosnia (like Jung Deutschland Bund) with a great help of Serbia’s military officer Dragutin Dimitrijević Apis (later Colonel) who was a leader of another conspiratorial underground revolutionary organization from Serbia – the Black Hand (Казимировић, 2013). Serbia’s Government did everything to prevent the assassination but it in vain. However, the Austro-Hungarian state intelligence service new very well about the preparation of the assassination but purposely did nothing to prevent it. An essence of the issue was that the members of the Young Bosnia have been not from Serbia but from Austria-Hungary, fighting for a pan-Serbian political unification in a form of a united or Greater Serbia (Dieterich, 1925, 226) likewise Apis too who was originally an ethnic Vlach (not a Serb) from the Eastern Serbia. Both organizations new well that a price for the unification was a war against the Dual Monarchy in which Serbia had to pay a terrible price. Unfortunately, after the Great War Serbia was out of 25% of her pre-war population and 50% of the pre-war industrial infrastructure. Nevertheless, at the end of the war it was not created a Greater Serbia but rather a common state with the Roman Catholic Slovenes and Croats and Muslim Bosniaks who became at such a way abolished for their terrible war crime atrocities in the uniforms of the Dual Monarchy against Serbia’s civilians during the Great War and occupation of Serbia. Josip Broz Tito (1892−1980) was also one of those South Slavs fighting in the Western Serbia in 1914−1915 as a soldier of infamous the 42nd Devil Division which committed recorded war crimes against the Serbian civilians (for instance, recorded by a Swiss German Archibald Rudolf Reiss, 1875−1929). Similar war crimes and torture against the Orthodox Serb civilians were done in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the war by the Austro-Hungarian authorities (Ћоровић, 1920). It is interesting that according to the American historian MacMillan, the Young Bosnia’s ideals were of the Pan-Slavonic nature. However, she equated the Young Bosnia with Al-Qaeda and Iran (MacMillan, 2006). Nevertheless, a majority of the Young Bosnia’s members or their ideological fathers were coming from the “vukojebinje” areas (“the land where wolves fuck”) as it was the case, for instance, with Vladimir Gaćinović (1890−1917) born in the village of Kačanj near Bileća in Herzegovina – a son of Serb Orthodox priest (Misha, 1999, 293−297).

[31] The Russian Emperor Nicolas II expressed to Serbia’s Prime Minister Nikola Pašić a final support to Serbia’s independence and real military-political protection in the case of Austro-Hungarian proclamation of the war to Serbia in the spring of 1914 (Драгнић, 1994, 118). An ultimate support to Serbia Russia expressed on July 24th, 1914 (a day after the Austro-Hungarian ultimatum to Serbia) during the meeting between Sazonov and Spalajković in St. Petersburg (Поповић, 2007, 86−87).

[32] Nevertheless, Greece did not proclaim war to Bulgaria in 1915 when Bulgaria did it to Serbia due to the pro-German policy of the King Constantine I who was the brother-in-law of Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm II.

[33] About the Soviet military intervention in Afghanistan, 1979−1989, see in (Grau, 2002; Fremont-Barnes, 2012; Riedel, 2014). On the US’ military involvement in Afghanistan from 2001 onwards, see in (Gall, 2014).

[34] About this issue, see more in (Mendeloff, 2008; Kanet, 2010; Leichtova, 2014).

[35] About the Bosniaks, as a matter of comparison, see in (Donia & Fine, 1994; Pinson, 1996).

[36]About the problems and challenges of the Balkan security and Russia in the 1990s, see in (Shoup, 1990; Гуськова, 1992−1993; Larrabee, 1994; Бодсон, 1996; Gow, 1997).

[37] A same kind of just declarative support to Serbia was expressed by a President of the Gazprom Republic of Russia – Vladimir Putin in Belgrade on October 14th, 2014.

[38] About the process of creation of the first Yugoslavia (the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes) during the Great War, see in (Sotirović, 2012).

[39] About debates on the reasons for the dissolution of the Yugoslav federation in the 1990s, see in (Guskova, 2003, I, 51−59).

[40] About the post-Cold War western supremacy in the global politics and international relations, see in (Mayer, 2014; Pijl, 2014). About a typical example of the western (the US’) colony in the region, Kosovo-Metohija as a part of the Pax Americana, see in (Hofbauer, 2009). On the relations between the NATO and the European Union, see in (Simon, 2013). About the history of a greater concept of the East Europe between the Germans and the Russians, see in (Bideleux & Jeffries, 1999; Janos, 2000). It is realistically expected that Montenegro will become a full Member State of the NATO in 2016 or at least in 2017.

[41] At the Congress of Berlin (from June 13th to July 13th, 1878), Bismarck’s main political goal was to maintain a balance of power in Europe which would block creation of any anti-German bloc. His assessment was based on the realpolitik politics of hard practical interests. Serbia’s official representative to the Congress, Jovan Ristić, became “brought down to earth during the second week of the Congress” (Misha, 1999, 149).

nato2-790x451

On Which Principle Ukraine’s Borders Are Formed?

800px-Ethnolingusitic_map_of_ukraine

The German occupation forces were those who have been the first to create and recognise a short-lived state’s independence of Ukraine in January 1918 during the time of their-own inspired and supported anti-Russian Bolshevik Revolution of 1917−1921. As reoccupied by the Bolshevik Red Army, the eastern and southern parts of the present-day territory of (a Greater) Ukraine joined in 1922 the USSR as a separate Soviet Socialist Republic (without Crimea). According to 1926 Soviet census of Crimea, the majority of its population were the Russians (382.645). The second largest ethnic group were the Tartars (179.094). Therefore, a Jew V. I. Lenin has to be considered as the real historical father of the Ukrainian statehood but also and as of the contemporary nationhood. Ukraine was the most fertile agricultural Soviet republic but particularly catastrophically affected by (Georgian) Stalin’s economic policy in the 1930s which neglected agricultural production in favour of the speed industrialisation of the country. The result was a great famine (holodomor) with around seven million people dead but majority of them were of the ethnic Russian origin. A territory of the present-day Ukraine was devastated during the WWII by the Nazi German occupation forces from 1941 to 1944 who installed in Ukraine a puppet and criminal regime of S. Bandera (1900−1959) under which a genocide on Poles, Jews and Russians was committed [on Stepan Bandera, see: Grzegorz Rossoliński-Liebe, Stepan Bandera: The Life and Afterlife of a Ukrainian Nationalist. Fascism, Genocide, and Cult, Stuttgart, ibidem, 2014]. For instance, the Ukrainian militia (12.000) directly participated in the 1942 holocaust of some 200.000 Volhynian Jews together with 140.000 German policemen. The Ukrainian mass killers learned their job from the Germans and applied their knowledge as well as on the Poles [Timothy Snyder, Tautų rekonstrukcija: Lieuva, Lenkija, Ukraina, Baltarusija 1569−1999, Vilnius: Mintis, 2009, 183].

banStepan Bandera declares independence of Ukraine (June 30th, 1941)

After the war J. V. Stalin, supported by the Ukrainian party-cadre N. Khrushchev, deported about 300.000 Ukrainians from their homeland as they have been accused for the collaboration with the Nazi regime during the war and the participation in genocide done by S. Bandera’s government. However, after the war the Ukrainians have been and directly rewarded by Moscow for the collaboration with the Germans and participation in S. Bandera’s organized genocide as the lands of Transcarpathia, littoral Moldova (Bessarabia), Polish Galicia and part of Romania’s Bukovina in 1945 followed by Crimea in 1954 became annexed by the Soviet Socialist Republic of Ukraine. These territories, which never have been part of any kind of Ukraine and overwhelmingly not populated by the ethnolinguistic Ukrainians were included into the Soviet Ukraine primarily due to the political activity by the strongest Ukrainian cadre in the USSR – N. Khrushchev, a person who inherited Stalin’s throne in Moscow in 1953. On this place, a parallel with Croatia is an absolute: for the Croat committed genocide on the Serbs, Jews and Roma by A. Pavelić’s regime (a Croat version of S. Bandera) during the WWII on the territory of the Independent State of Croatia a post-war (Socialist Republic of) Croatia was awarded by a Croat-Slovenian dictator of Yugoslavia J. B. Tito with the lands of Istria, Adriatic islands and Dubrovnik – all of them never have been in any kind of the state of Croatia before the WWII.

Gorbachev’s policy of deliberate dissolution of the USSR from the time of Reykjavik bilateral meeting with Ronald Reagan in 1988 caused a revival of the ethnic nationalism of the Ukrainians who proclaimed an independence on August 24th, 1991 (confirmed on referendum on December 1st, 1991 only by those who did not boycott it) in the wake of anti-Gorbachev’s military putsch in Moscow (mis)using the political situation of paralyzed central government in the country. The state’s independence of Ukraine was proclaimed and later internationally recognized within the borders of a Greater Stalin-Khrushchev’s Ukraine with at least 20% of the ethic Russian population living in a compact area in the eastern part of the country and as well as making a qualified (2/3) majority of Crimea’s population. The coming years saw the rifts with neighbouring Russia with the main political task by Kiev to commit as possible as the Ukrainization (assimilation) of ethnic Russians (similar to the policy of the Croatization of ethnic Serbs in Croatia orchestrated by the neo-Nazi government in Zagreb led by Dr. Franjo Tuđman). At the same time the Russian majority in Crimea constantly required the peninsula’s reunification with mother Russia but getting only an autonomous status within Ukraine – a country which they never considered as their natural-historical homeland. The Russians of Ukraine were becoming more and more unsatisfied with conditions in which they have been leaving from the time when in 1998−2001 the Ukrainian taxation system collapsed what meant that the central government in Kiev was not able to pay the salaries and pensions to its own citizens. A very weak Ukrainian state became in fact unable to function normally (“failed state”) and as a consequence it did not have a power to prevent a series of politically motivated assassinations followed by popular protests which had been also very much inspired by economic decline of the country [on history of Ukraine and the Ukrainians, see more and compare with: Andrew Wilson, The Ukrainians: Unexpected Nation, New Heaven: Yale University Press, 2009; Serhii Plokhy, The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraine, New York: Basic Books, 2015; Anna Reid, Borderland: A Journey Through the History of Ukraine, New York: Basic Books, 2015].

As a matter of fact, it has to be stressed that the Ukrainian historiography on their own history of the land and the people is extremely nationalistic and in very cases not objective like many other national historiographies. It is basically politically coloured with the main task to present the Ukrainians as a natural ethnolinguistic nation who have been historically fighting to create a united independent national state and unjustifiably claiming certain territories to be ethnohistorically the “Ukrainian”. As a typical example of such tendency to rewrite history of the East Europe according to the nationalistic and politically correct framework is, for instance, the book by Serhy Jekelčyk on the birth of a modern Ukrainian nation in which, among other quasi-historical facts based on the self-interpreted events, is written that the USSR in 1939−1940 annexed from Poland and Romania the “West Ukrainian land” [Serhy Jekelčyk, Ukraina: Modernios nacijos gimimas, Vilnius: Baltos lankos, 2009, 17]. However, this “West Ukrainian land” never was part of any kind of Ukraine before the WWII as Ukraine as a state or administrative province never existed before V. I. Lenin created in 1923 a Soviet Socialist Republic of Ukraine within the USSR but at that time without the “West Ukrainian land” as it was not a part of the USSR. Moreover, the Ukrainians were either not leaving or being just minority on this land what means that Ukraine even did not have ethnic rights over the biggest part of the “West Ukraine”. Even today around half of Ukraine’s state’s territory is not populated by the Ukrainians as a majority of the population. Moreover, in some regions there are no Ukrainians at all. Therefore, the cardinal question became: On which principles the Ukrainian borders are formed?

Ukraine_historical_vs_electoral_19941How historical parts of Ukraine voted in 1994 Presidential elections

As another example of the Ukrainian historiographic nationalistic misleading we can find in an academic brochure on Bukovina’s Metropolitan’s residence, published in 2007 by the National University of Chernivtsi. In the brochure is written that this university is “…one of the oldest classical universities of Ukraine” [The Architecturial Complex of Bukovynian Metropolitan’s Residence, Chernivtsi: Yuriy Fedkovych National University of Chernivtsi, 2007, 31] that is true only from the present-day rough political perspective but not and from a moral-historic point of view.  Namely, the university is located in the North Bukovina which in 1775 the Habsburg Monarchy had obtained. The land was from 1786 administrated within the Chernivtsi district of Galicia and one hundred years after the affiliation of Bukovina to the monarchy, the Franz-Josephs-Universität was inaugurated on October 4th, 1875 (the name day of the emperor). In the other words, the university’s origin as whole Bukovina has nothing to do with any kind of both historical Ukraine and ethnic Ukrainians as before 1940 it was outside of administrative territory of Ukraine when the whole North Bukovina on August 13th, became annexed by the USSR according to the Hitler-Stalin Pact (or the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact) signed on August 23rd, 1939 [Ibid.]. Therefore, two notorious bandits (one Nazi another Bolshevik) decided to transfer the North Bukovina to the USSR and the land became after the WWII part of a Greater (Stalin’s) Ukrainian SSR. Nevertheless, while the Ukrainian nationalists claim that “Russia” (in fact anti-Russian USSR) occupied Ukraine, the annexation of the North Bukovina and other territories from Poland, Czechoslovakia and Romania in 1940 are for them a legitimate act of historical justice. Here we have to notice that according to the same pact, the territories of the independent states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are as well as annexed by the USSR that is considered by their historians and politicians as “occupation”, what means (illegal) act of aggression that is braking international law and legitimate order. Nevertheless, they never accused Ukraine of doing the same in regard to occupied lands from its three western neighbours in 1940/1944 [see, for instance: Priit Raudkivi, Estonian History in Pictures, Tallinn: Eesti Instituut, 2004 (without numeration of the pages); Arūnas Gumuliauskas, Lietuvos istorija (1795−2009), Šiauliai: Lucilijus, 2010, 279−295].

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Republic of Both Nations (Poland-Lithuania) before 1657 (source Wikipedia)

Political assimilation of certain separate Slavonic ethnolinguistic groups in Ukraine was and is one of the standardized instruments for the creation and maintaining of the Ukrainian national identity in the 20th century. The most brutal case is of the Ruthenians (Rusyns) who are simply proclaimed as historical Ukrainians known under such name till the WWII. Their land, which was in the interwar period part of Czechoslovakia, that was annexed by the USSR at the end of the WWII and included into a Greater Soviet Ukraine is simply renamed from Ruthenia into the Sub-Carpathian Ukraine. However, the Ruthenians and the Ukrainians are two separate Slavonic ethnolinguistic groups as such officially recognized, for example, in Serbia’s Autonomous Province of Vojvodina where the Ruthenian (Rusyn) language is even standardized and studied together with Ruthenian philology and literature at a separate department at the University of Novi Sad. Unfortunately, the Ruthenian position in Ukraine is even worst in comparison with the Kurdish position in Turkey as the process of Ruthenian assimilation is much speeder than of the Kurdish case.

From the current perspective of the Ukrainian crisis and in general from the point of solving the “Ukrainian Question” it has to be noticed a very historical fact that a part of the present-day East Ukraine became legally incorporated into the Russian Empire in 1654 as a consequence of the decision by the local hetman of Zaporozhian territory Bohdan Khmelnytsky (c. 1595−1657) based on a popular revolt against the Polish-Lithuanian (the Roman Catholic) occupation of Ukraine which broke out in 1648 [Alfredas Bumblauskas, Senosios Lietuvos istorija, 1009−1795, Vilnius: R. Paknio leidykla, 2007, 306; Jevgenij Anisimov, Rusijos istorija nuo Riuriko iki Putino: Žmonės. Įvykiai. Datos, Vilnius: Mokslo ir enciklopedijų leidybos centras, 2014, 185−186]. It means that the core of the present-day Ukraine voluntarily joined Russia, therefore escaping from the Roman Catholic Polish-Lithuanian oppression. Subsequently, B. Khmelnytsky’s ruled territory has to be considered from a historical point of view as the motherland of all present-day Ukraine – the motherland which already in 1654 chose Russia.

IMG_20160218_162405Prof. Dr. Vladislav B. Sotirovic

Mykolas Romeris University

Faculty of Politics and Management

Institute of Political Sciences

Vilnius, Lithuania

www.global-politics.eu

globalpol@global-politics.eu

© Vladislav B. Sotirovic 2016

ukraine_map_region_vote

Who Are The Ukrainians?

11299551416_82c691f444_b_KievUkraine is an East European territory which was originally forming a western part of the Russian Empire from the mid-17th century. That is a present-day independent state and separate ethnolinguistic nation as a typical example of Benedict Anderson’s theory-model of the “imagined community” – a self-constructed idea of the artificial ethnic and linguistic-cultural identity. According to Anderson, the nation is abstract and firstly subjective social construction that defy simple, objective definition yet have been for the last two centuries the crucial basis of conflict in world politics and international relations, through assertion of their expressed nationalism.[i] However, nationalism is quite broad ideology which can be easily transformed into political movement that became the case, for instance, exactly with the Ukrainian self-imagined ethnonational identity. Acting politically, in principle by all means, on behalf of its own nation usually encompass pretty much a large scale of political ideas and practices including and ethnic cleansing or/and genocide on particular other national groups that happened, for example, in the WWII Ukraine when the Poles, Russians, Jews and Gypsies (Roma) experienced the genocide committed by the Ukrainian Nazi-Fascist nationalists (the Banderists). banderistas-ukraine

The 2014 Euromaidan protesters in Kiev with the picture of Stepan Bandera – a leader of the WWII Nazi-Fascist movement in Ukraine

 Before 2014 Ukraine was a home of some 45 million inhabitants of whom, according to the official data, there were around 77 percent of those who declared themselves as the Ukrainians. Nevertheless, many Russians do not consider the Ukrainians or the Belarus as “foreign” but rather as the regional branches of the Russian nationality. It is a matter of fact that, differently to the Russian case, the national identity of the Belarus or the Ukrainians was never firmly fixed as it was always in the constant process of changing and evolving.[ii] The process of self-constructing identity of the Ukrainians after 1991 is basically oriented vis-à-vis Ukraine’s two most powerful neighbours: Poland and Russia. In the other words, the self-constructing Ukrainian identity (like the Montenegrin or the Belarus) is able so far just to claim that the Ukrainians are not both the Poles or the Russians but what they really are is of a great and endless debate. Therefore, an existence of an independent state of Ukraine, nominally as a national state of the Ukrainians, is of a very doubt indeed from the both historical and ethnolinguistic perspectives.

The Slavonic term Ukraine, for instance, in the Serbo-Croat case Krajina, means in the English language a Borderland – a provincial territory situated on the border between at least two political entities: in this particular historical case, between the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania as the Republic of Both Nations (1569−1795) and the Russian Empire.[iii] The term is mostly used from the time of the treaty (truce) of Andrussovo in 1667 between these two states. In the other words, Ukraine and the Ukrainians as a natural objective-historical-cultural identity never existed as it was considered only as a geographic-political territory between two other natural-historical entities (Poland and Russia). All (quasi)historiographic mentioning of this land and the people as Ukraine/Ukrainians referring to the period before the mid-17th century are quite scientifically incorrect but, however, in many (pro)Western academic writing cases it is politically inspired and coloured with the purpose to present them as something crucially different from the historical process of ethnic genesis of the Russians.[iv]

Historically speaking, it was a Roman Catholic Vatican that was in fact beyond the process of creation of the “imagined community” of the Ukrainian national identity for the very confessional-political purpose to separate the people from this borderland territory from the Orthodox Russian Empire. Absolutely the same, as a matter of comparison, was done by Vatican’s client-state Austria-Hungary in regard to the national identity of Bosnian-Herzegovinian population when this province was administered by Vienna-Budapest from 1878 to 1918 as it was the Austria-Hungarian government who created totally artificial and very new ethnolinguistic identity – the Bosnians, just not to be the (Christian Orthodox) Serbs, who were at that time a strong majority of the provincial population.[v] Therefore, to be a Bosnian meant not to be a Serb with a final consequence to become a Roman Catholic what means the Croat. Similarly, in the case of Ukraine, to be a Ukrainian means primarily not to be a Christian Orthodox Russian.

A creation of ethnolinguistically artificial Ukrainian national identity and later on a separate nationality was a part of a wider confessional-political project by Vatican in the Roman Catholic historical struggle against the Eastern Orthodox Christianity (the Eastern “schism”) and its churches within the framework of Pope’s traditional proselytizing policy of reconversion of the “infidels”. One of the most successful instruments of a soft-way reconversion used by Vatican was to compel a part of the Orthodox population to sign a Union Act with the Roman Catholic Church and recognizing at such a way a supreme power by the Pope and dogmatic filioque (“and from the Son” – the Holy Spirit proceeds and from the Father and from the Son). Therefore, the ex-Orthodox believers who now became the Uniate Brothers or the Greek Orthodox believers became in a great number later on a pure Roman Catholics who as well as changed their original (from the Christian Orthodox time) ethnolinguistic identity. It is, for instance, very clear in the case of the Christian Orthodox Serbs in Zhumberak area of Croatia who passed way from the Christian Orthodox Serbs to the Greek Christian Orthodox believers but later became the Roman Catholics and finally today are the Croats. Something similar occurred and in the case of Ukraine. On October 9th, 1596, it was announced by Vatican a Brest Union with a part of the Orthodox population within the borders of the Roman Catholic Lithuanian-Polish Commonwealth (today Ukraine).[vi] The crucial issue in this matter is that today Ukraine’s Uniates and the Roman Catholics are mostly anti-Russian oriented having at the same time strong Ukrainian national feelings. Basically, both the Ukrainian and the Belarus present-day ethnolinguistic and national identities are historically founded on the anti-Christian Orthodox policy of Vatican within the territory of ex-Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth that was in essence an anti-Russian policy.

The Lithuanian historiography writing on the Church Union of Brest in 1596 clearly confirms that:

“… the Catholic Church more and more strongly penetrated the zone of the Orthodox Church, giving a new impetus to the idea, which had been cherished since the time of Jogaila and Vytautas and formulated in the principles of the Union of Florence in 1439, but never put into effect – the subordination of the GDL Orthodox Church to the Pope’s rule”.[vii]

In the other words, the rulers of the Roman Catholic Grand Duchy of Lithuania (the GDL) from the very time of Lithuania’s baptizing in 1387−1413 by Vatican had a plan to Catholicize all Orthodox believers of the GDL among whom overwhelming majority were the Slavs. As a consequence, the relations with Moscow became very hostile as Russia accepted a role of the protector of the Christian Orthodox believers and faith and therefore the Church Union of Brest was seen as a criminal act by Rome and its client-state of the Republic of Two Nations (Poland-Lithuania).

Today, it is absolutely clear that the most pro-Western and anti-Russian part of Ukraine is exactly the West Ukraine – the lands that was historically under the rule by the Roman Catholic ex-Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and later on by the former Habsburg Monarchy (Austria-Hungary). It is obvious, for instance, from the presidential elections voting results in 2010 as the pro-Western regions voted for Y. Tymoshenko while the pro-Russian regions of the East Ukraine did it for V. Yanukovych. It is a reflection of the post-Soviet Ukrainian identity dilemma between Europe and Eurasia – a dilemma that is of common nature for all Central and East European nations who historically played a role of a buffer zone between the German Mittel Europa project and the Russian project of a pan-Slavonic unity and reciprocity.

The fact is that the western territories of the present-day Ukraine are mainly populated by the Roman Catholics, the East Orthodox and the Uniates. This part of Ukraine is mostly nationalistic and politically pro-Western oriented. The East Ukraine is in essence a Russophone territory and subsequently “tends to look to closer relations with Russia”.[viii] By Vatican policy of signing the union with the Christian Orthodox believers in the present-day West Ukraine from 1596 the necessary preconditions for de-Russification and Ukrainization of the local inhabitants were founded. At the course of time, as a consequence of such policy by the Roman Catholic Church, Ukraine became sharply divided by confession, national feelings, economic development, linguistic identity and geopolitical orientation to such extent that Ukraine today is an example of the “failed state”.[ix] By scholarly definition, “a failed state is a state that is unable to perform its key role of ensuring domestic order by monopolizing the use of force within its territory”.[x] ukr

The 1994 Presidential election results in Ukraine according to historical regions 

According to the 2001 census, out of Ukraine’s 45 mill. inhabitants, 17,3 percent were the Russians but 30 percent were speaking the Russian language. Subsequently, a great part of those who identified themselves as the Ukrainians recognized that their native language is, in fact, the Russian. In addition, there were 83 percent of Ukraine’s inhabitants in 2008 for whom the Russian was a chosen language as a lingua franca. There is as well as a mixture of the Russian language and the Ukrainian language with a predominant Russian vocabulary spoken at the countryside – the Surzhik.[xi]

The Ukrainian authorities up today did not properly solve the problem of the official language in the country as it is officially fixed to be the Ukrainian that is spoken in the western regions of the country while the Russian is spoken in the eastern provinces of Ukraine and even used as a lingua franca by majority of the population. Therefore, an official bilingualism would be a matter of a real solution of many current ethnopolitical problems in Ukraine. If Belgium can be officially bilingual state, there is no any obstacle for Ukraine to be the same.

Endnotes:

[i] Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, Revised edition, London: Verso, 2016.

[ii] On the Ukrainian self-identity construction, see [Karina V. Korostelina, Constructing the Narratives of Identity and Power: Self-Imagination in a Young Ukrainian Nation, Lanham, Maryland: Lexington Books, 2014].

[iii] A German historical term for Ukraine would be a mark – a term for the state’s borderland which existed from the time of the Frankish Kingdom/Empire of Carl the Great.

[iv] For instance, Alfredas Bumblauskas, Genutė Kirkienė, Feliksas Šabuldo (sudarytojai), Ukraina: Lietuvos epocha, 1320−1569, Vilnius: Mokslo ir enciklopedijų leidybos centras, 2010.

[v] Лазо М. Костић, Наука утврђује народност Б-Х муслимана, Србиње−Нови Сад: Добрица књига, 2000.

[vi] Arūnas Gumuliauskas, Lietuvos istorija: Įvykiai ir datos, Šiauliai: Šiaures Lietuva, 2009, 44; Didysis istorijos atlasas mokyklai: Nuo pasaulio ir Lietuvos priešistorės iki naujausiųjų laikų, Vilnius: Leidykla Briedis, (without year of publishing), 108.

[vii] Zigmantas Kiaupa et al, The History of Lithuania Before 1795, Vilnius: Lithuanian Institute of History, 2000, 288.

[viii] John S. Dryzek, Leslie Templeman Holmes, Post-Communist Democratization: Political Discourses Across Thirteen Countries, Cambridge−New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002, 114.

[ix] Зоран Милошевић, „Друштвени процеси у самосталној Украјини“, Радови, Филозофски факултет, Источно Сарајево, 2005, 289.

[x] Andrew Heywood, Global Politics, New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2001, 121.

[xi] Срђан Перишић, Нова геополитика Русије, Београд: Медија центар „Одбрана“, 2015, 273−275.

IMG_20160218_162405

Prof. Dr. Vladislav B. Sotirovic

www.global-politics.eu

globalpol@global-politics.eu

All Rights Reserved 2016 by Vladislav B. Sotirovic

Ukraine Army NAZI

The Ukraine Between Fascism, Ochlocracy and Breakup

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There is less talk about the rump-Ukraine in the news these days, especially in the western corporate media, and there is a good reason for that: that short-lived Urkonazi “Banderastan” is falling apart. This is hardly surprising since the entire concept was never viable in the first place. Let’s remember how it all began.

It is crucial to remember that there was no spontaneous revolution or insurrection in the Ukraine, the Euromaidan had nothing to do with Europe and everything to do with the USA. Oh sure, the Ukrainian people were told that it was about “joining the EU”, but that was never even a remote possibility. The sole purpose of the Euromaindan was to prevent the rebirth of a “new Soviet Union”. No matter how ludicrous the notion of a USSR v2 might be, this is what was in the always paranoid, self-deluded and ignorant minds of the US “deep state”. Two of the main spokesmen for that US deep state were very clear about this:

First, we have the crucial statement made by Hillary Clinton in early December of 2012:

“There is a move to re-Sovietise the region,” (…) “It’s not going to be called that. It’s going to be called a customs union, it will be called Eurasian Union and all of that,” (…) “But let’s make no mistake about it. We know what the goal is and we are trying to figure out effective ways to slow down or prevent it.”

Now, it is absolutely irrelevant to argue about whether Hillary was right or wrong in her interpretation. what matters is that she, and her political masters, really believe is that Putin wants to re-create the Soviet Union.

Next, we need to recall another crucial statement, made this time by Zbigniew Brzezinski who wrote:

Without Ukraine Russia ceases to be empire, while with Ukraine – bought off first and subdued afterwards, it automatically turns into empire…According to him, the new world order under the hegemony of the United States is created against Russia and on the fragments of Russia. Ukraine is the Western outpost to prevent the recreation of the Soviet Union.

Again, it does not matter at all whether evil Zbig is right or wrong. What matters is that this was the real cause of the Euromaidan: the Americans wanted to create an anti-Russia right across the Russian border. This anti-Russia would have been an extremely dangerous and destabilizing neighbor for Russia. And if Russia did intervene in the Ukraine, that would have revived a simmering Cold War to new levels, justifying the “protection” of Europe by the USA for the next 50 or 60 years at least. Uncle Sam was in a win-win situation. It was a great plan, except that it never worked, of course.

First, the Russian twice stunned the Americans: first, by using military force where they were never expected to do so (Crimea) and, second, by not using military force were they were expected to do so (the Donbass). This was really bad news for the AngloZionist Empire: Crimea, the undisputed “crown jewel” of the “independent Ukraine” was reunited with Russia without a single fatality, while the Donbass (for sure the richest and most advanced part of the “independent Ukraine”) seceded without any overt Russian military intervention at all. That was not what the US strategists had hoped for.

In total disarray, they ordered the Ukronazi military and death-squads to re-take the secessionist region, and the junta almost did. Only a desperate last ditch resistance by the Novorussians followed by the opening of a vast Voentrog (lit. “military trade”, name of a well known military surplus store, “voentorg” now refers to the covert delivery of military equipment to Novorussia) and a well-organized “northern wind” (the sending of volunteer military specialists) saved the day. After that critical moment, the Ukronazis never had another major success and their operational offensives in Saur Mogila and Debaltsevo ended in total disaster.

Then the junta in Kiev tried everything, from bombings, to random artillery attacks, to the use of phosphorus gas, to terrorist attacks, to even the use of ballistic missiles and, of course, the MH-17 false flag. But nothing worked. The Novorussians had dug in and their tactical skills and morale was vastly superior to the junta’s forces. Worse, the Novorussians succeeded, albeit with great efforts, to eventually turn their volunteer militias into a single conventional military force. Of course, compared to the Russian military, the Donetsk and Lugansk forces are still eons away in terms of capabilities, but compared to the so-called “Ukrainian army” or the Nazi death-squads – they are vastly more capable and sophisticated.

Stepan Bandera

A Nazi collaborator and mass-killer Stepan Bandera – Today he is an icon of Euromaidan Ukraine which is directly sponsored by the imperialistic USA and its colony the EU

Second, the level of mis-management, corruption and plain stupidity shown by the new ruling “elite” (so to speak) was truly of an African quality. For one thing, these nationalist imbeciles committed economic seppuku by severing almost all ties with Russia. While these ties were important to Russia, they were absolutely vital to the Ukraine. Furthernmore, Poroshenko and the coterie of pseudo-nationalist oligarchs around him proceeded to embezzle everything worth embezzling and simply stole all the money which the West provided has “help” to support the New Ukraine.

Third, despite the fact that a huge strategic PSYOP had been organized in the western corporate media to present the Ukronazis as well-intentioned patriots wanting to join Europe and live free, the Ukies were so stupid and overt in their words, actions and symbols that it became more and more clear to the people in the West that far from dealing with some “liberty loving democrats” the West was in bed with bone fide Nazis. Not only that, but the West was now paying to be in bed with them. Not that the European corporate leaders ever were so squeamish as to not be willing to be in bed with psychopathic murderers, but in the Ukrainian case this meant the loss of a much more important market: Russia.

So now, in May 2016, it becomes more and more obvious, if not undeniable, that the entire “Ukrainian project” is a total mess, potentially far worse and far more dangerous than the mess in Libya or Iraq. At least Libya has a tiny population while and Iraq can probably be brought back into some semblance of normalcy by the Iranians, assuming the West stops using Daesh to destabilize the entire region. But the Ukraine has roughly 40 million people left (officially 45M, but between Crimea, the Donbass and those who fled, it is probably well under 40M by now), smack in the center of Europe (at least if, unlike me, you consider “eastern Europe” as part of Europe). And it is falling apart. Fast.

The coup in the Ukraine has been described as a coup of “millionaires against billionaires” and there much truth to this. Oligarchs are clearly one of the key forces in the New Ukraine. The other major forces are the neo-Nazis, mostly from the western Ukraine. The third, and often forgotten, force are the various criminal mobs (ethnic and regional) who, while often closely linked to the oligarchs and Nazis, is still distinct from these two, mainly by different motives and a different mindset. The key thing about all of them is this: they are now all armed to the teeth. That’s right – the oligarchs have their own “security services”, the Nazis have their death-squads while the mobsters all have their gangs of armed thugs. As for the Ukie cops, they are staying out of the way, while the much feared SBU (Ukie KGB), which has never caught a single western spy in its entire history, is so busy kidnapping, torturing and generally terrorizing any anti-Nazi Ukrainian left that they have no time, or inclination, for law and order operations. Even anything, the SBU is basically “for hire” by the oligarchs, Nazis and even mobsters.

As for the Ukrainian armed forces, they are mostly composed of men from the eastern Ukraine and they lack the kind of ideological drive which the death-squads, which are composed of mostly west-Ukrainians, have. They do, however, have more firepower than the death-squads, and that partially explains why neither the regulars nor the death-squads have performed well in combat. What is certain is that neither the regular armed forces nor the death-squads have the means, or the will, to restore law and order, nevermind do something about the economic disaster.

In other words – there is no rule of law left at all and if the country has not entirely gone down the “Somali road” yet, it is mainly by inertia. But as the consequences of the economic collapse become evident, violence will explode.

Now that western aid has more or less dried up, and the country has been robbed blind, the central government has less and less relevance to the regions, each of which is now run by local oligarchs/warlords. This is most likely the first step in the inevitable process of breakup of what is left of the Ukraine with Lvov and Ivano-Frankovsk joining forces to create a mini-Banderastan in the west of the country. Odessa and the southern Ukraine will, sooner or later, want to break free from the control of Kiev and either be independent or join Russia in one way or another, while the central Ukraine will be left with nothing except roaming gangs of thugs à la Mad Max.

As for the Donbass (and Crimea, of course), they are gone forever – and Kiev knows that. The best proof of that awareness in Kiev can be found in the undeniable fact that the Junta has made absolutely zero efforts to try to lure back or somehow attract the people in the breakaway regions of the Ukraine to return to Kiev’s fold. Instead of paying their pensions (which they legally were obliged to), the stole all the pension money of the people in the Donbass. As for Crimea, Kiev imposed a water blockade, a transportation blockade, a food blockade and an electricity blockade. And while Russia provided everything needed for the people of Crimea, that kind of petty and outright nasty harassment will hardly endear the Nazi Junta in Kiev to the people of Crimea. The fact is that Kiev has long given up on the notion of convincing the “vatniki” whom they have always hated and considered as subhuman semi-Asian mongrels anyway.

The new chairman of the Verkhovna Rada, the Ukrainian parliament, and the number 2 person in the country, Andrei Parubii, an overt Nazi with, according to rumors, mental issues, is now seriously discussing establishing a visa regime with Russia – thereby depriving 4-5 million Ukrainians in Russia from working in Russia and sending money back home. Sounds crazy? It is. But these are the same folks who closed the Ukrainian airspace to Russian airlines which, predictably, resulted in Russia closing her airspace to the Ukrainians. One look at a map will tell you who lost more.

Of course, as the economy comes to a standstill, the ideological struggles will gradually be replaced by even more primitive forms of competition for good and services and, in certain regions, even for food and shelter. When this process will begin the rump-Ukraine will undergo a process of transformation from fascism to ochlocracy at which point the rump-Ukraine will probably break up and a new wave of refugees will flood the EU.

The most amazing thing in all this is that the Ukrainian nationalists really did it all to themselves. If between 1991 and 2014 the Ukraine were run in a corrupt and incompetent manner, after 2014 the new leaders in Kiev embarked on a course which can only be described as suicidal. Seeing the chaos in the Ukraine today, it is hard to believe that in 1991 the Ukraine was a highly developed country, with an immense potential and which seemed poised to immensely benefit from being a natural bridge between the East and the West. The current apocalypse is entirely man-made, driven by hate-filled ideological delusion, fantastic levels of corruption and an apparently total lack of common sense.

The Ukrainians were promised a future looking like Germany and, instead, they got Somalia. There is going to be hell to pay for all those who were involved in this gigantic deception.

14-05-2016

Source: http://www.unz.com/tsaker/the-ukraine-between-fascism-ochlocracy-and-breakup/

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Save Donbass People from Ukrainian Euromaidan Army

Obama and Donetsk

Donbass 50 000 killed 200 kids

Help Donbass

Destroyed Monument by UKR Army to liberation of Donbass

Luhansk 13 08 2014 kids killed by Ukrainian army

Kiev hunta war crimes in 2014

Snooker Game and the Global Politics

Путин Меркел Обама

Jimmy Carter: Return of the Crimea to Russia was Inevitable

 

Former US President Jimmy Carter, in an interview with radio station “Voice of America”, ​​said that the reunification of Russia and the Crimea was an inevitable event.

Carter also says he is pleased with Russia’s commitment to implement the Minsk agreement.  He added that the Elders were also pleased with Russia’s allegiance to the Minsk agreement.  “There’s not any doubt in our mind that the Russians genuinely want to see all the aspects of that concluded.  I think that’s the only ballgame in town,” said Carter, “really as far as resolving the problems with Ukraine, is to get the Minsk agreement implemented.”
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Carter and other former global leaders met with Russian President Vladimir Putin for 2.5 hours Wednesday in Moscow.  The group, called the Elders, visited at a time when Russia’s relations with the West are severely strained over Moscow’s seizure of Crimea and the deadly conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Carter, who served as president of the United States in 1977-1981 years, commented on the current situation in Ukraine, noting the predestination of some processes of history:

“I am well aware of the fact that Khrushchev many years ago – though not too many – handed control of the Crimea to Ukraine as a gift. This was done with the expectation that Ukraine, like Crimea, is part of one of the Soviet Union. I do not believe that there is any immediate prospect of the break in relations between Russia and the Crimea. I think it (the reunion of Russia and the Crimea) was almost an inevitable step, whether people agree with this or not.”

Carter originally stated that position a year ago, shortly after the annexation happened, but he also has said Russia should not be allowed any other territorial gains in Ukraine.

In his comments, Carter also opposed any arms supplies to Ukraine from the United States:

“I would like very much to see a cessation of sending arms to Ukraine, either to Kyiv or to the eastern part,” said Carter.  “And, my hope is that President Obama would not do so.”

In addition, the former president of the United States noted that in the perception of Russia and the United States there is a serious difference in the assessment of the manner in which Ukraine had a change of government in 2014:

“There is a problem with the interpretation of what happened then in Kiev, with the removal of the President and then selecting another. And the issue is not fully resolved. From the point of view of the Americans, the arrival of the president of Poroshenko was par for the course in accordance with the law, but I have to say that the interpretation of these events for President Putin is quite different.”

Jimmy Carter’s visit to Moscow on April 27-29 was with several other members of the “Elders”(The Elders). This is combination of world-famous public figures with experience of peaceful settlement of conflicts and the protection of human rights in crisis situations, which was founded by former South African President Nelson Mandela in 2007.

Currently, the group consists of 12 people, headed by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. Information about the meeting is published on the website of the President of the Russian Federation (Meeting with participants of the “Elders”) and on the online page of the association (The Elders conclude three-day visit to Moscow).

May 1st, 2015
Adapted from Rusvesna and VOA –  Joaquin Flores

About the Author:

Michael Collins is a Washington DC area writer, researcher, and citizen journalist. Since 2005, Collins has tackled the subjects the corporate media ignores. His articles on the perversion of voting rights and elections culminated with a major study that showed the official story of the 2004 election had to be false. Collins series on The Money Party anticipated the thievery behind the financial collapse of 2008. He wrote extensively about the Susan Lindauer case, the U.S. intelligence operative that was indicted and locked in a psychiatric prison for months when she tried to tell Congress why the Iraq invasion was totally unnecessary. When no one in corporate media would talk to him, Collins did three major interviews with former Charles Manson prosecutor and leading crime author Vincent Bugliosi on his book, The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder. Recently, Collins wrote about the disastrous Libyan invasion and the massive injustices of the U.S. attack on Syria. Today, Collins is focused on the propaganda and massive deception by the Obama administration and its NATO partners regarding the coup in Ukraine and attack by the U.S. supported government against its own people. Collins is a featured contributor to OpEdNews, one of top 100 political web sites on the internet. His home page is http://opednews.com/michaelcollins

Historical Development of Ukrainian Territorial Imperialism – A Map

A map of historical spreading of the Ukrainian territorial imperialistic project. A nation which occupied and annexed parts of ethnohistorical lands of all its neighbors. A historical map of evidence:

Ukraine ImperialismCrimea 1926

A Crimea census of 1926 (done by anti-Russian USSR’s authorities): No Ukrainians at all!

Obama’s ‘Big Lie’: US Has Supplied Ukraine With Arms From the Start

President Obama is still considering arming Ukraine in case the latest ceasefire is breached and the conflict escalates; but political analyst Stephen Lendman told Sputnik in an exclusive interview that the US leader is lying, and that the US has been supplying arms to Kiev from the very start of the military operation.

The ceasefire between Kiev forces and independence supporters of Donetsk and Luhansk is generally holding, shelling in Donbas has stopped as the truce came in force on midnight, a spokesperson at the Kiev special operations headquarters said Sunday.But a day earlier Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and US President Barack Obama, during a meeting by phone, agreed on the further coordination of efforts in the case that the ceasefire fails and the Ukrainian conflict escalates.

Stephen Lendman, a Research Associate for the Centre for Research on Globalization explained to Sputnik, in an exclusive interview on the recent developments in Ukraine, that Washington has been lying the whole time – it has been supplying weapons to Kiev from the very start of the military operation.

“Washington supplied heavy weapons since the conflict began last April and maybe before it began in preparation for what was planned. I wrote about it several times including in a new article this (Saturday) morning,” he told Sputnik.

“So, key is understanding that Washington armed Kiev the whole time. Obama claiming it’s under consideration is one of his many ‘Big Lies’,” he said.

NATO and Ukrainian aircraft have shipped in arms and munitions on a regular basis. Washington is the main culprit, he added.

‘Arms Supplied by US Are for Offense, Not Defense’

Another lie, the analyst says, is about the arms being “defensive.”

President Barack Obama talks with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko
© Flickr/ The White House

“Heavy weapons are supplied for offense, not defense, of course,” he says. “Fighting continued after the Minsk agreement was concluded. Kiev forces kept shelling civilian areas.”

“US media, of course, blame Russia and rebels. Reports and opinions in our press are scandalous. The most outrageous I recall in my lifetime. Absolutely devoid of truth. Riddled with beginning-to-end Big Lies,” Lendman said.

“I expect a short-term mostly (but not entirely) quieter period beginning Sunday or Monday followed days or weeks later by Kiev initiated escalated conflict — with full US support and encouragement,” he predicts.

“Hardline Kiev elements like the Right Sector’s Dmitry Yarosh and likeminded extremists reject Minsk terms. They vow to keep fighting. Expect Russia and rebels to be blamed for their aggression. Expect vicious Putin bashing to continue. It’s evident in US weekend reports I’ve seen so far,” he added.The political analyst predicts that Washington will continue supplying Kiev with heavy weapons. Hundreds of US combat troops are coming to Ukraine on the pretext of training Ukraine’s military, while hundreds of US special forces are already there.

‘The Big Question is Whether Obama Will Authorize Direct US Involvement in Ukraine’s Conflict’

The big question is whether Obama will authorize direct US involvement in Ukraine’s conflict. He’s already done it in Iraq with US boots on the ground and more on the way despite vowing months earlier never to do it.

“I believe if rebels keep decisively defeating Kiev forces, which I expect, Obama will deploy US forces to Donbas — getting America directly involved in another war as opposed to the proxy one he’s now waging,” said Lendman.

An escalation will bring the war to Russia’s borders, and the risk is it may spill over. With US combat forces in Ukraine and Obama determined to crush pro-independence fighters, the danger of East-West confrontation is huge.‘Donbas is Obama’s War. He Didn’t Launch it to Quit’

“We could find ourselves in WW III whether or not anyone wants it. Global wars begin like what’s now ongoing. With neocon lunatics making policy in Washington, anything ahead is possible,” he added.

“I strongly believe chances for a durable, sustainable peace in Donbas are virtually nil despite, Putin’s best efforts to resolve things diplomatically.”

President Putin, Sergei Lavrov, and other Russian officials have gone all-out for peace throughout months of conflict.

“Obama wants war, not peace. Donbas is his war. He didn’t launch it to quit. CIA, FBI and US special forces infest Kiev. They’re involved in planning, implementing and directing the fighting,” said the analyst.

August 24 2014 US made Cougar infantry carrier during Ukraine Independence Day in KievAugust 24th, 2014:

The U.S.-made Cougar infantry carrier at the Independence Day military parade in Kiev 

 

Photo by U.S. Army Europe Images

EuroMaidan Ukraine – (Selection of the Best Photos)

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NAZI Ukrainian soldiers

Help Donbass

Ukraine Army NAZI

Nazi Azov battallion

Украјинска наци војска

Ukraine Army bastards

Lavov 1943 Nazi SS and 2014

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Stepan Bandera

CNN Ukr February 2015

Nazi Azov UKR

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Azovians

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Украинизација

Kiev hunta war crimes in 2014

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Destroyed Monument by UKR Army to liberation of Donbass

Nazi Ukraine 2014

Nazi Ukraine soldiers 2014

Донбас

Анти Еуронаѕимаидан

Obama and Donetsk

TV ZDF Ukraine Nazi soldiers

Ukrainian Nazism

Ukraine RIGHT SECTOR 2014

Ukraine Nazi Division

Ukrainian extra patriot

“Welcome to Nulandistan: Propaganda and the Crisis in Ukraine” (Documentary Movie, 2014)

Nazi Ukraine soldiers 2014

“Welcome to Nulandistan: Propaganda and the Crisis in Ukraine” (2014)

This full length GRTV documentary looks at the fictitious land of Nulandistan that has been constructed out of Ukraine.The GRTV documentary deconstructs Nulandistan and the propaganda of the Obama Administration […], the US Department of States, US officials, and their allies about the crisis in Ukraine and takes a look at their growing frustration towards the Russian media, particularly RT, for challenging their account of the events on the ground in what they have declared is an intensifying information war.

The full length documentary starts by looking at the self-benefiting description of the EuroMaidan protests that US officials have used and how it has grossly diverged from reality. Then the Odessa Massacre is deconstructed for audiences.

The documentary then looks at the situation in East Ukraine, including the violence and referenda. The events in East Ukraine are then contrasted to the positions of US officials and Russia.

This documentary shows how the reality of events in Ukraine has been been misappropriated and propagandized to support US foreign policy and to justify tensions against Russia.

To read articles by its producer, Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, please click the following link:
http://www.globalresearch.ca/author/m…

PLEASE DISTRIBUTE AND SHARE THIS GRTV DOCUMENTARY

Obama and Donetsk

Documentary Movie “Ukraine: Masks of the Revolution” (2016, by Paul Moreira)

NAZI Ukrainian soldiers

Last movie by famous French movie maker Paul Moreira on Canal+ (France) broadcasted 01/02/2016.

Some French citizens are now shocked after discovering the truth about the Odessa massacre and the Euromaidan bloody coup in 2013/2014.

Interview to Paul Moreira:
http://www.humanite.fr/derriere-les-masques-de-la-revolution-ukrainienne-597568

Preview screening on January, 20th 2016 at FIPA Biarritz 29th edition, selected out of competition in Reportages and Investigation – Panorama of Creation category.

AZOV

Without them, there would have been no Ukrainian revolution.

In February 2014, paramilitary groups fought against the police in the streets of Kyev and ousted President Yanukovych. They settled a new government.

According to the western media, they were the revolution heroes. They fought on the right side. Which is actually extreme-right militias. And they are now heavily armed. The Right Sector, Azov or Svoboda created parallel irregular forces that easily go out of control. In Odessa, in May 2014, they were responsible for a mass killing without facing any charges. 45 people burnt to death. A massacre that didn’t get much attention.

How come western democracies haven’t raised their voice in protest?

Most likely because these Ukrainian nationalist militias actually played a significant role in a much larger scale war. The Ukrainian revolution was strongly supported by the US diplomacy.

Маске револуцијеIn the new Cold War that opposes Russia to the USA, Ukraine is a decisive pawn. A tactical pawn to contain Putin’s ambitions.

“Ukraine: Masks of the revolution” by Paul Moreira sheds light on this blind corner.

Nazi Azov UKR

The hard-hitting documentary by Paul Moreira “Ukraine, les masques de la révolution” [Ukraine: Masks of the Revolution], released on Monday night by Canal+, created a turmoil both in Ukraine and France well before the premiere. On Sunday the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry reported in Facebook that their Ambassador in France had sent an outraged letter to Canal+ where he condemned  the documentary as a “a pamphlet at the height of the worst disinformation traditions” “using primitive methods of journalistic manipulation, including the handling of comments of respondents, distorted in translation and facts and purely fabricated images“. The same day Le Monde doubled the pressure on Canal+. Paul Moreira has calmly and respectfully responded to his critics by a detailed post translated into English here. To the credit of Canal Plus’ management, the documentary was screened in time.

Please watch it attentively. And let’s try to understand why it has infuriated so much the official Kiev.

To be fair, the masterpiece did not reveal anything new. So far there were a lot of separate investigations by international organizations, NGOs, concerned individuals etc on different aspects of the “Revolution of Dignity“: who actually killed theheavenly hundred, what happened in Odessa in May 2014, what is going on in the zone of “anti-terrorist operation” in the South-East of Ukraine, where are the “Russian troops” and where are the Western mercenaries there… But most of them were successfully ignored by the mainstream Western media, stick to their comfortable myths about Euromaidan.

The principal danger of Paul Moreira heartbreaking 50-minutes long documentary is that it exposed all critically important lies and silenced facts about “Revolution of Dignity” and its agents in a concentrated form at the established French TV channel.

Paul Moreira did not do anything but showed a simple and honest truth – there was no dignity in that “revolution”. There is no “free civilizational choice” and “independent and legitimate authorities” in today’s Ukraine. There are gangsters licensed to kill and rob, psychopaths and criminals in the “democratic parliament”, parallel Nazi-inspired army, foreign officials who manipulate the political process in a sovereign country, media under total nationalist control etc. His argumentation and picture are so evident, eloquent and bright that there is no reasonable way to refute them. Here is the cause of hysteria and calls to ban (which paradoxically has triggered unprecedented public attention to the movie far beyond France) – they understand that an open and fair discussion would lead further undesirable revelations against the interim rulers in Kiev.

One more pleasant outcome of this story is that the rumors about clinical death of the independent journalism in the West are apparently somewhat exaggerated…

Source: http://orientalreview.org/2016/02/03/euromaidan-unmasked-europe-shocked-by-the-bitter-truth-on-ukraine/

Ukraine RIGHT SECTOR 2014