Präsident Putin – was schrieb er im Sommer 2021 (oder was ließ er schreiben?)

Den treuen Lesern meiner Blogs zur Erklärung: Pandemie, Kriegsdrohungen und Kriegsrealität der letzten Monate verhinderten die „normale“ intellektuelle Tätigkeit, die Erarbeitung und Veröffentlichung von Beiträgen zu historischen, kulturellen, philosophischen Themen.

Aber das „hohe demokratische Gut“ der Meinungsfreiheit und der grundgesetzlich verbürgte freie Zugang zu politischen Informationen – auch aus dem Ausland, auch aus Staaten, mit denen Deutschland und die EU sich nicht im Kriegszustand befinden – lässt mich heute „zur Feder greifen“ und das Ergebnis den Lesern meiner Blogs zur Kenntnis geben.

Der Hintergrund: im Sommer des vergangenen Jahres veröffentlichte der russische Präsident Putin einen Beitrag unter dem Titel „On the Historical Unity of Russians und Ukrainians“, dessen Hauptthesen sich wiederfinden in der Rede Putins zur Begründung des Antrags auf völkerrechtliche Anerkennung der Unabhängigkeit der Republiken Donezk und Lugansk vor dem russischen Parlament im letzten Monat.

Da es aufgrund der Blockierung des Zugangs zu offiziellen Medien Russlands durch das demokratische politische System der Bundesrepublik nicht möglich ist, jenen Beitrag Putins vom 12. Juli 2021 abzurufen (man möge es versuchen: en.kremlin.ru/d/66181), erlaube ich mir, den Text hier zum Zwecke der Beförderung der wissenschaftlichen Debatte und zur objektiven politischen Meinungsbildung wiederzugeben, den ich glücklicherweise damals abgespeichert hatte.

Quelle:  http://www.en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/66181

Article by Vladimir Putin

”0n the Historical Unity  of Russians and Ukrainians“ 

July 12, 2021 17:00 

During the recent Direct Line, when I was asked about Russian-Ukrainian relations, I said  that Russians and Ukrainians were one people — a single whole. These words were not  driven by some short-term considerations or prompted by the current political context. It is  what l have said on numerous occasions and what I firmly believe. I therefore feel it  necessary to explain my position in detail and share my assessments of today’s situation. 

First of all, I would like to emphasize that the wall that has emerged in recent years  between Russia and Ukraine, between the parts of what is essentially the same historical  and spiritual space, to my mind is our great common misfortune and tragedy. These are,  first and foremost, the consequences of our own mistakes made at different periods  of time. But these are also the result of deliberate efforts by those forces that have always  sought to undermine our unity. The formula they apply has been known from time  immemorial — divide and rule. There is nothing new here. Hence the attempts to play  on the ”national question“ and sow discord among people, the overarching goal being  to divide and then to pit the parts of a single people against one another. 

To have a better understanding of the present and look into the future, we need to turn  to history. Certainly, it is impossible to cover in this article all the developments that have  taken place over more than a thousand years. But l will focus on the key, pivotal moments  that are important for us to remember, both in Russia and Ukraine. 

Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians are all descendants of Ancient Rus, which was  the largest state in Europe. Slavic and other tribes across the vast territory – from Ladoga,  Novgorod, and Pskov to Kiev and Chernigov — were bound together by one language (which  we now refer to as Old Russian), economic ties, the rule of the princes of the Rurik dynasty,  and — after the baptism of Rus — the Orthodox faith. The spiritual choice made by St.  Vladimir, who was both Prince of Novgorod and Grand Prince of Kiev, still largely determines  our affinity today.      

The throne of Kiev held a dominant position in Ancient Rus. This had been the custom  since the late 9th century. The Tale of Bygone Years captured for posterity the words of Oleg  the Prophet about Kiev, „Let it be the mother of all Russian cities.“ 

Later, like other European states of that time, Ancient Rus faced a decline of central rule  and fragmentation. At the same time, both the nobility and the common people perceived  Rus as a common territory, as their homeland. 

The fragmentation intensified after Batu Khan’s devastating invasion, which ravaged many  cities, including Kiev. The northeastern part of Rus fell under the control of the Golden  Horde but retained limited sovereignty. The southern and western Russian lands largely  became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which — most significantly — was referred  to in historical records as the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Russia. 

Members of the princely and ”boyar“ clans would change service from one prince  to another, feuding with each other but also making friendships and alliances. Voivode  Bobrok of Volyn and the sons of Grand Duke of Lithuania Algirdas — Andrey of Polotsk  and Dmitry of Bryansk — fought next to Grand Duke Dmitry lvanovich of Moscow  on the Kulikovo field. At the same time, Grand Duke of Lithuania Jogaila — son  of the Princess of Tver — led his troops to join with Mamai. These are all pages of our  shared history, reflecting its complex and multi-dimensional nature. 

Most importantly, people both in the western and eastern Russian lands spoke the same  language. Their faith was Orthodox. Up to the middle of the 15th century, the unified church  government remained in place. 

At a new stage of historical development, both Lithuanian Rus and Moscow Rus could have  become the points of attraction and consolidation of the territories of Ancient Rus. lt so  happened that Moscow became the center of reunification, continuing the tradition  of ancient Russian statehood. Moscow princes — the descendants of Prince Alexander  Nevsky — cast off the foreign yoke and began gathering the Russian lands. 

In the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, other processes were unfolding. ln the 14th century,  Lithuania’s ruling elite converted to Catholicism. In the 16th century, it signed the Union  of Lublin with the Kingdom of Poland to form the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth.  The Polish Catholic nobility received considerable land holdings and privileges  in the territory of Rus. In accordance with the 1596 Union of Brest, part of the western  Russian Orthodox clergy submitted to the authority of the Pope. The process of Polonization  and Latinization began, ousting Orthodoxy.       

As a consequence, in the 16—17th centuries, the liberation movement of the Orthodox  population was gaining strength in the Dnieper region. The events during the times  of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky became a turning point. His supporters struggled  for autonomy from the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth. 

ln its 1649 appeal to the king of the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Zaporizhian  Host demanded that the rights of the Russian Orthodox population be respected, that  the voivode of Kiev be Russian and of Greek faith, and that the persecution of the churches  of God be stopped. But the Cossacks were not heard. 

Bohdan Khmelnytsky then made appeals to Moscow, which were considered by the Zemsky  Sobor. On 1 October 1653, members of the supreme representative body of the Russian  state decided to support their brothers in faith and take them under patronage. ln January  1654, the Pereyaslav Council confirmed that decision. Subsequently, the ambassadors  of Bohdan Khmelnytsky and Moscow visited dozens of cities, including Kiev, whose  populations swore allegiance to the Russian tsar. Incidentally, nothing of the kind happened  at the conclusion of the Union of Lublin. 

In a letter to Moscow in 1654, Bohdan Khmelnytsky thanked Tsar Aleksey Mikhaylovich  for taking „the whole Zaporizhian Host and the whole Russian Orthodox world under  the strong and high hand of the Tsar“. lt means that, in their appeals to both the Polish king  and the Russian tsar, the Cossacks referred to and defined themselves as Russian  Orthodox people. 

Over the course of the protracted war between the Russian state and the Polish- Lithuanian Commonwealth, some of the hetmans, successors of Bohdan Khmelnytsky,  would „detach themselves“ from Moscow or seek support from Sweden, Poland, or Turkey.  But, again, for the people, that was a war of liberation. It ended with the Truce of Andrusovo  in 1667. The final outcome was sealed by the Treaty of Perpetual Peace in 1686.  The Russian state incorporated the city of Kiev and the lands on the left bank  of the Dnieper River, including Poltava region, Chernigov region, and Zaporozhye. Their  inhabitants were reunited with the main part of the Russian Orthodox people. These  territories were referred to as ”Malorossia“ (Little Russia). 

The name „Ukraine“ was used more often in the meaning of the Old Russian word  ”okraina“ (periphery), which is found in written sources from the 12th century, referring  to various border territories. And the word „Ukrainian“, judging by archival documents,  originally referred to frontier guards who protected the external borders.       

On the right bank, which remained under the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the old  orders were restored, and social and religious oppression intensified. On the contrary,  the lands on the left bank, taken under the protection of the unified state, saw rapid  development. People from the other bank of the Dnieper moved here en masse. They  sought support from people who spoke the same language and had the same faith. 

During the Great Northern War with Sweden, the people in Malorossia were not faced with  a choice of whom to side with. Only a small portion of the Cossacks supported Mazepa’s  rebellion. People of all orders and degrees considered themselves Russian and Orthodox. 

Cossack senior officers belonging to the nobility would reach the heights of political,  diplomatic, and military careers in Russia. Graduates of Kiev-Mohyla Academy played  a leading role in church life. This was also the case during the Hetmanate — an essentially  autonomous state formation with a special internal structure — and later in the Russian  Empire. Malorussians in many ways helped build a big common country — its statehood,  culture, and science. They participated in the exploration and development of the Urals,  Siberia, the Caucasus, and the Far East. Incidentally, during the Soviet period, natives  of Ukraine held major, including the highest, posts in the leadership of the unified state.  Suffice it to say that Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev, whose party biography was  most closely associated with Ukraine, led the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU)  for almost 30 years. 

In the second half of the 18th century, following the wars with the Ottoman Empire, Russia  incorporated Crimea and the lands of the Black Sea region, which became known  as Novorossiya. They were populated by people from all of the Russian provinces. After  the partitions of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Russian Empire regained  the western Old Russian lands, with the exception of Galicia and Transcarpathia, which  became part of the Austrian — and later Austro-Hungarian — Empire. 

The incorporation of the western Russian lands into the single state was not merely  the result of political and diplomatic decisions. it was underlain by the common faith,  shared cultural traditions, and — I would like to emphasize it once again — language  similarity. Thus, as early as the beginning of the 17th century, one of the hierarchs  of the Uniate Church, Joseph Rutsky, communicated to Rome that people in Moscovia  called Russians from the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth their brothers, that their written  language was absolutely identical, and differences in the vernacular were insignificant. He  drew an analogy with the residents of Rome and Bergamo. These are, as we know,  the center and the north of modern Italy.      

Many centuries of fragmentation and living within different states naturally brought about  regional language peculiarities, resulting in the emergence of dialects. The vernacular  enriched the literary language. Ivan Kotlyarevsky, Grigory Skovoroda, and Taras  Shevchenko played a huge role here. Their works are our common literary and cultural  heritage.

Taras Shevchenko wrote poetry in the Ukrainian language, and prose mainly  in Russian. The books of Nikolay Gogol, a Russian patriot and native of Poltavshchyna, are  written in Russian, bristling with Malorussian folk sayings and motifs. How can this heritage  be divided between Russia and Ukraine? And why do it?  The south-western lands of the Russian Empire, Malorussia and Novorossiya,  and the Crimea developed as ethnically and religiously diverse entities. Crimean Tatars,  Armenians, Greeks, Jews, Karaites, Krymchaks, Bulgarians, Poles, Serbs, Germans,  and other peoples lived here. They all preserved their faith, traditions, and customs. 

I am not going to idealise anything. We do know there were the Valuev Circular of 1863  an then the Ems Ukaz of 1876, which restricted the publication and importation of religious  and socio-political literature in the Ukrainian language. But it is important to be mindful  of the historical context. These decisions were taken against the backdrop of dramatic  events in Poland and the desire of the leaders of the Polish national movement to exploit  the „Ukrainian issue“ to their own advantage. I should add that works of fiction, books  of Ukrainian poetry and folk songs continued to be published. There is objective evidence  that the Russian Empire was witnessing an active process of development  of the Malorussian cultural identity within the greater Russian nation, which united  the Velikorussians, the Malorussians and the Belorussians. 

At the same time, the idea of Ukrainian people as a nation separate from the Russians  started to form and gain ground among the Polish elite and a part of the Malorussian  intelligentsia. Since there was no historical basis — and could not have been any,  conclusions were substantiated by all sorts of concoctions, which went as far as to claim  that the Ukrainians are the true Slavs and the Russians, the Muscovites, are not. Such  „hypotheses“ became increasingly used for political purposes as a tool of rivalry between  European states. 

Since the late 19th century, the Austro-Hungarian authorities had latched onto this  narrative, using it as a counterbalance to the Polish national movement and pro-Muscovite  sentiments in Galicia. During World War l, Vienna played a role in the formation of the so-called Legion of Ukrainian Sich Riflemen. Galicians suspected of sympathies with Orthodox  Christianity and Russia were subjected to brutal repression and thrown into  the concentration camps of Thalerhof and Terezin.  

Further developments had to do with the collapse of European empires, the fierce civil war  that broke out across the vast territory of the former Russian Empire, and foreign  intervention. 

After the February Revolution, in March 1917, the Central Rada was established in Kiev,  intended to become the organ of supreme power. ln November 1917, in its Third Universal,  it declared the creation of the Ukrainian People’s Republic (UPR) as part of Russia. 

ln December 1917, UPR representatives arrived in Brest-Litovsk, where Soviet Russia was  negotiating with Germany and its allies. At a meeting on 10 January 1918, the head  of the Ukrainian delegation read out a note proclaiming the independence of Ukraine.  Subsequently, the Central Rada proclaimed Ukraine independent in its Fourth Universal. 

The declared sovereignty did not last long. Just a few weeks later, Rada delegates signed  a separate treaty with the German bloc countries. Germany and Austria-Hungary were  at the time in a dire situation and needed Ukrainian bread and raw materials. In order  to secure large-scale supplies, they obtained consent for sending their troops and technical  staff to the UPR. In fact, this was used as a pretext for occupation. 

For those who have today given up the full control of Ukraine to external forces, it would be  instructive to remember that, back in 1918, such a decision proved fatal for the ruling  regime in Kiev. With the direct involvement of the occupying forces, the Central Rada was  overthrown and Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi was brought to power, proclaiming instead  of the UPR the Ukrainian State, which was essentially under German protectorate. 

ln November 1918 — following the revolutionary events in Germany and Austria-Hungary —  Pavlo Skoropadskyi, who had lost the support of German bayonets, took a different course,  declaring that „Ukraine is to take the lead in the formation of an All-Russian Federation“.  However, the regime was soon changed again. lt was now the time of the so-called  Directorate. 

ln autumn 1918, Ukrainian nationalists proclaimed the West Ukrainian People’s Republic  (WUPR) and, in January 1919, announced its unification with the Ukrainian People’s  Republic. In July 1919, Ukrainian forces were crushed by Polish troops, and the territory  of the former WUPR came under the Polish rule. 

In April 1920, Symon Petliura (portrayed as one of the „heroes“ in today’s Ukraine)  concluded secret conventions on behalf of the UPR Directorate, giving up — in exchange  for military support – Galicia and Western Volhynia lands to Poland. In May 1920, Petliurites entered Kiev in a convoy of Polish military units. But not for long. As early  as November 1920, following a truce between Poland and Soviet Russia, the remnants  of Petliura’s forces surrendered to those same Poles. 

The example of the UPR shows that different kinds of quasi-state formations that emerged  across the former Russian Empire at the time of the Civil War and turbulence were  inherently unstable. Nationalists sought to create their own independent states, while  leaders of the White movement advocated indivisible Russia. Many of the republics  established by the Bolsheviks‘ supporters did not see themselves outside Russia either.  Nevertheless, Bolshevik Party leaders sometimes basically drove them out of Soviet Russia  for various reasons. 

Thus, in early 1918, the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic was proclaimed and asked  Moscow to incorporate it into Soviet Russia. This was met with a refusal. During a meeting  with the republic’s leaders, Vladimir Lenin insisted that they act as part of Soviet Ukraine.  On 15 March 1918, the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party (Bolsheviks)  directly ordered that delegates be sent to the Ukrainian Congress of Soviets, including from  the Donetsk Basin, and that „one government for all of Ukraine“ be created  at the congress. The territories of the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic later formed  most of the regions of south-eastern Ukraine. 

Under the 1921 Treaty of Riga, concluded between the Russian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR  and Poland, the western lands of the former Russian Empire were ceded to Poland.  In the interwar period, the Polish government pursued an active resettlement policy,  seeking to change the ethnic composition of the Eastern Borderlands — the Polish name  for what is now Western Ukraine, Western Belarus and parts of Lithuania. The areas were  subjected to harsh Polonisation, local culture and traditions suppressed. Later, during  World War ll, radical groups of Ukrainian nationalists used this as a pretext for terror not  only against Polish, but also against Jewish and Russian populations. 

In 1922, when the USSR was created, with the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic  becoming one of its founders, a rather fierce debate among the Bolshevik leaders resulted  in the implementation of Lenin’s plan to form a union state as a federation of equal  republics. The right for the republics to freely secede from the Union was included  in the text of the Declaration on the Creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and,  subsequently, in the 1924 USSR Constitution. By doing so, the authors planted  in the foundation of our statehood the most dangerous time bomb, which exploded  the moment the safety mechanism provided by the leading role of the CPSU was gone,  the party itself collapsing from within. A „parade of sovereignties“ followed. On 8 December 1991, the so-called Belovezh Agreement on the Creation of the Commonwealth  of Independent States was signed, stating that „the USSR as a subject of international law  and a geopolitical reality no longer existed.“ By the way, Ukraine never signed or ratified  the ClS Charter adopted back in 1993. 

In the 1920’s-1930’s, the Bolsheviks actively promoted the ”localization policy“, which  took the form of Ukrainization in the Ukrainian SSR. Symbolically, as part of this policy  and with consent of the Soviet authorities, Mikhail Grushevskiy, former chairman of Central  Rada, one of the ideologists of Ukrainian nationalism, who at a certain period of time had  been supported by Austria-Hungary, was returned to the USSR and was elected member  of the Academy of Sciences. 

The localization policy undoubtedly played a major role in the development  and consolidation of the Ukrainian culture, language and identity. At the same time, under  the guise of combating the so-called Russian great-power chauvinism, Ukrainization was  often imposed on those who did not see themselves as Ukrainians. This Soviet national  policy secured at the state level the provision on three separate Slavic peoples: Russian,  Ukrainian and Belorussian, instead of the large Russian nation, a triune people comprising  Velikorussians, Malorussians and Belorussians. 

In 1939, the USSR regained the lands earlier seized by Poland. A major portion of these  became part of the Soviet Ukraine. In 1940, the Ukrainian SSR incorporated part  of Bessarabia, which had been occupied by Romania since 1918, as well as Northern  Bukovina. In 1948, Zmeyiniy Island (Snake Island) in the Black Sea became part of Ukraine.  In 1954, the Crimean Region of the RSFSR was given to the Ukrainian SSR, in gross  violation of legal norms that were in force at the time. 

I would like to dwell on the destiny of Carpathian Ruthenia, which became part  of Czechoslovakia following the breakup of Austria-Hungary. Rusins made up  a considerable share of local population. While this is hardly mentioned any longer, after  the liberation of Transcarpathia by Soviet troops the congress of the Orthodox population  of the region voted for the inclusion of Carpathian Ruthenia in the RSFSR or, as a separate  Carpathian republic, in the USSR proper. Yet the choice of people was ignored. In summer  1945, the historical act of the reunification of Carpathian Ukraine „with its ancient  motherland, Ukraine“ — as The Pravda newspaper put it – was announced. 

Therefore, modern Ukraine is entirely the product of the Soviet era. We know  and remember well that it was shaped — for a significant part — on the lands of historical  Russia. To make sure of that, it is enough to look at the boundaries of the lands reunited with the Russian state in the 17th century and the territory of the Ukrainian SSR when it left  the Soviet Union. 

The Bolsheviks treated the Russian people as inexhaustible material for their social  experiments. They dreamt of a world revolution that would wipe out national states. That is  why they were so generous in drawing borders and bestowing territorial gifts. lt is no longer  important what exactly the idea of the Bolshevik leaders who were chopping the country  into pieces was. We can disagree about minor details, background and logics behind  certain decisions. One fact is crystal clear: Russia was robbed, indeed. 

When working on this article, l relied on open-source documents that contain well-known  facts rather than on some secret records. The leaders of modern Ukraine and their external  „patrons“ prefer to overlook these facts. They do not miss a chance, however, both inside  the country and abroad, to condemn ”the crimes of the Soviet regime,“ listing among them  events with which neither the CPSU, nor the USSR, let alone modern Russia, have anything  to do. At the same time, the Bolsheviks‘ efforts to detach from Russia its historical  territories are not considered a crime. And we know why: if they brought about  the weakening of Russia, our ill-wishes are happy with that. 

Of course, inside the USSR, borders between republics were never seen as state borders;  they were nominal within a single country, which, while featuring all the attributes  of a federation, was highly centralized – this, again, was secured by the CPSU’s leading  role. But in 1991, all those territories, and, which is more important, people, found  themselves abroad overnight, taken away, this time indeed, from their historical  motherland. 

What can be said to this? Things change: countries and communities are no exception.  Of course, some part of a people in the process of its development, influenced by a number  of reasons and historical circumstances, can become aware of itself as a separate nation  at a certain moment. How should we treat that? There is only one answer: with respect! 

You want to establish a state of your own: you are welcome! But what are the terms? l will  recall the assessment given by one of the most prominent political figures of new Russia,  first mayor of Saint Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak. As a legal expert who believed that every  decision must be legitimate, in 1992, he shared the following opinion: the republics that  were founders of the Union, having denounced the 1922 Union Treaty, must return  to the boundaries they had had before joining the Soviet Union. All other territorial  acquisitions are subject to discussion, negotiations, given that the ground has been  revoked.       

In other words, when you leave, take what you brought with you. This logic is hard to refute.  I will just say that the Bolsheviks had embarked on reshaping boundaries even before  the Soviet Union, manipulating with territories to their liking, in disregard of people’s views. 

The Russian Federation recognized the new geopolitical realities: and not only recognized,  but, indeed, did a lot for Ukraine to establish itself as an independent country. Throughout  the difficult 1990’s and in the new millennium, we have provided considerable support  to Ukraine. Whatever „political arithmetic“ of its own Kiev may wish to apply, in 1991-  2013, Ukraine’s budget savings amounted to more than USD 82 billion, while today, it  holds on to the mere USD 1.5 billion of Russian payments for gas transit to Europe. If  economic ties between our countries had been retained, Ukraine would enjoy the benefit  of tens of billions of dollars. 

Ukraine and Russia have developed as a single economic system over decades  and centuries. The profound cooperation we had 30 years ago is an example  for the European Union to look up to. We are natural complementary economic partners.  Such a close relationship can strengthen competitive advantages, increasing the potential  of both countries. 

Ukraine used to possess great potential, which included powerful infrastructure, gas  transportation system, advanced shipbuilding, aviation, rocket and instrument engineering  industries, as well as world-class scientific, design and engineering schools. Taking over  this legacy and declaring independence, Ukrainian leaders promised that the Ukrainian  economy would be one of the leading ones and the standard of living would be among  the best in Europe. 

Today, high-tech industrial giants that were once the pride of Ukraine and the entire Union,  are sinking. Engineering output has dropped by 42 per cent over ten years. The scale  of deindustrialization and overall economic degradation is visible in Ukraine’s electricity  production, which has seen a nearly two-time decrease in 30 years. Finally, according  to IMF reports, in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic broke out, Ukraine’s GDP per  capita had been below USD 4 thousand. This is less than in the Republic of Albania,  the Republic of Moldova, or unrecognized Kosovo. Nowadays, Ukraine is Europe’s poorest  country. 

Who is to blame for this? ls it the people of Ukraine’s fault? Certainly not. It was  the Ukrainian authorities who waisted and frittered away the achievements of many  generations. We know how hardworking and talented the people of Ukraine are. They can  achieve success and outstanding results with perseverance and determination. And these qualities, as well as their openness, innate optimism and hospitality have not gone.  The feelings of millions of people who treat Russia not just well but with great affection, just  as we feel about Ukraine, remain the same. 

Until 2014, hundreds of agreements and joint projects were aimed at developing our  economies, business and cultural ties, strengthening security, and solving common social  and environmental problems. They brought tangible benefits to people — both in Russia  and Ukraine. This is what we believed to be most important. And that is why we had  a fruitful interaction with all, l emphasize, with all the leaders of Ukraine. 

Even after the events in Kiev of 2014, l charged the Russian government to elaborate  options for preserving and maintaining our economic ties within relevant ministries  and agencies. However, there was and is still no mutual will to do the same. Nevertheless,  Russia is still one of Ukraine’s top three trading partners, and hundreds of thousands  of Ukrainians are coming to us to work, and they find a welcome reception and support. So  that what the „aggressor state“ is. 

When the USSR collapsed, many people in Russia and Ukraine sincerely believed  and assumed that our close cultural, spiritual and economic ties would certainly last,  as would the commonality of our people, who had always had a sense of unity at their core.  However, events — at first gradually, and then more rapidly — started to move in a different  direction. 

In essence, Ukraine’s ruling circles decided to justify their country’s independence through  the denial of its past, however, except for border issues. They began to mythologize  and rewrite history, edit out everything that united us, and refer to the period when Ukraine  was part of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union as an occupation. The common tragedy of collectivization and famine of the early 1930s was portrayed as the genocide of the Ukrainian people. 

Radicals and neo-Nazis were open and more and more insolent about their ambitions. They  were indulged by both the official authorities and local oligarchs, who robbed the people  of Ukraine and kept their stolen money in Western banks, ready to sell their motherland  for the sake of preserving their capital. To this should be added the persistent weakness  of state institutions and the position of a willing hostage to someone else’s geopolitical will. 

I recall that long ago, well before 2014, the U.S. and EU countries systematically  and consistently pushed Ukraine to curtail and limit economic cooperation with Russia. We,  as the largest trade and economic partner of Ukraine, suggested discussing the emerging problems in the Ukraine-Russia-EU format. But every time we were told that Russia had  nothing to do with it and that the issue concerned only the EU and Ukraine. De facto  Western countries rejected Russia’s repeated calls for dialogue. 

Step by step, Ukraine was dragged into a dangerous geopolitical game aimed at turning  Ukraine into a barrier between Europe and Russia, a springboard against Russia. inevitably, there came a time when the concept of „Ukraine is not Russia“ was no longer an option.  There was a need for the  ”anti-Russia“ concept which we will never accept. 

The owners of this project took as a basis the old groundwork of the Polish-Austrian  ideologists to create an ”anti-Moscow Russia“. And there is no need to deceive anyone that  this is being done in the interests of the people of Ukraine. The Polish-Lithuanian  Commonwealth never needed Ukrainian culture, much less Cossack autonomy. In Austria-Hungary, historical Russian lands were mercilessly exploited and remained the poorest.  The Nazis, abetted by collaborators from the OUN-UPA, did not need Ukraine, but a living  space and slaves for Aryan overlords. 

Nor were the interests of the Ukrainian people thought of in February 2014. The legitimate  public discontent, caused by acute socio-economic problems, mistakes, and inconsistent  actions of the authorities of the time, was simply cynically exploited. Western countries  directly interfered in Ukraine’s internal affairs and supported the coup. Radical nationalist  groups served as its battering ram. Their slogans, ideology, and blatant aggressive  Russophobia have to a large extent become defining elements of state policy in Ukraine. 

All the things that united us and bring us together so far came under attack. First  and foremost, the Russian language. Let me remind you that the new „Maidan“ authorities  first tried to repeal the law on state language policy. Then there was the law  on the „purification of power“, the law on education that virtually cut the Russian language  out of the educational process. 

Lastly, as early as May of this year, the current president introduced a bill on „indigenous  peoples“ to the Rada. Only those who constitute an ethnic minority and do not have their  own state entity outside Ukraine are recognized as indigenous. The law has been passed.  New seeds of discord have been sown. And this is happening in a country, as I have already  noted, that is very complex in terms of its territorial, national and linguistic composition,  and its history of formation. 

There may be an argument: if you are talking about a single large nation, a triune nation,  then what difference does it make who people consider themselves to be — Russians, Ukrainians, or Belarusians. I completely agree with this. Especially since the determination  of nationality, particularly in mixed families, is the right of every individual, free to make his  or her own choice. 

But the fact is that the situation in Ukraine today is completely different because it involves  a forced change of identity. And the most despicable thing is that the Russians in Ukraine  are being forced not only to deny their roots, generations of their ancestors but also  to believe that Russia is their enemy. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the path  of forced assimilation, the formation of an ethnically pure Ukrainian state, aggressive  towards Russia, is comparable in its consequences to the use of weapons of mass  destruction against us. As a result of such a harsh and artificial division of Russians  and Ukrainians, the Russian people in all may decrease by hundreds of thousands or even  millions. 

Our spiritual unity has also been attacked. As in the days of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania,  a new ecclesiastical has been initiated. The secular authorities, making no secret of their  political aims, have blatantly interfered in church life and brought things to a split,  to the seizure of churches, the beating of priests and monks. Even extensive autonomy  of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church while maintaining spiritual unity with the Moscow  Patriarchate strongly displeases them. They have to destroy this prominent and centuries-old symbol of our kinship at all costs. 

I think it is also natural that the representatives of Ukraine over and over again vote against  the UN General Assembly resolution condemning the glorification of Nazism. Marches  and torchlit processions in honor of remaining war criminals from the SS units take place  under the protection of the official authorities. Mazepa, who betrayed everyone, Petliura,  who paid for Polish patronage with Ukrainian lands, and Bandera, who collaborated with  the Nazis, are ranked as national heroes. Everything is being done to erase from  the memory of young generations the names of genuine patriots and victors, who have  always been the pride of Ukraine. 

For the Ukrainians who fought in the Red Army, in partisan units, the Great Patriotic War  was indeed a patriotic war because they were defending their home, their great common  Motherland. Over two thousand soldiers became Heroes of the Soviet Union. Among them  are legendary pilot lvan Kozhedub, fearless sniper, defender of Odessa and Sevastopol  Lyudmila Pavlichenko, valiant guerrilla commander Sidor Kovpak. This indomitable  generation fought, those people gave their lives for our future, for us. To forget their feat is  to betray our grandfathers, mothers and fathers.       

The anti-Russia project has been rejected by millions of Ukrainians. The people of Crimea  and residents of Sevastopol made their historic choice. And people in the southeast  peacefully tried to defend their stance. Yet, all of them, including children, were labeled  as separatists and terrorists. They were threatened with ethnic cleansing and the use  of military force. And the residents of Donetsk and Lugansk took up arms to defend their  home, their language and their lives. Were they left any other choice after the riots that  swept through the cities of Ukraine, after the horror and tragedy of 2 May 2014 in Odessa  where Ukrainian neo-Nazis burned people alive making a new Khatyn out of it? The same  massacre was ready to be carried out by the followers of Bandera in Crimea, Sevastopol,  Donetsk and Lugansk. Even now they do not abandon such plans. They are biding their  time. But their time will not come. 

The coup d’état and the subsequent actions of the Kiev authorities inevitably provoked  confrontation and civil war. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights estimates that  the total number of victims in the conflict in Donbas has exceeded 13,000. Among them  are the elderly and children. These are terrible, irreparable losses. 

Russia has done everything to stop fratricide. The Minsk agreements aimed at a peaceful  settlement of the conflict in Donbas have been concluded. I am convinced that they still  have no alternative. In any case, no one has withdrawn their signatures from the Minsk  Package of Measures or from the relevant statements by the leaders of the Normandy  format countries. No one has initiated a review of the United Nations Security Council  resolution of 17 February 2015. 

During official negotiations, especially after being reined in by Western partners, Ukraine’s  representatives regularly declare their „full adherence“ to the Minsk agreements, but are  in fact guided by a position of „unacceptability“. They do not intend to seriously discuss  either the special status of Donbas or safeguards for the people living there. They prefer  to exploit the image of the „victim of external aggression“ and peddle Russophobia. They  arrange bloody provocations in Donbas. In short, they attract the attention of external  patrons and masters by all means. 

Apparently, and l am becoming more and more convinced of this: Kiev simply does not  need Donbas. Why? Because, firstly, the inhabitants of these regions will never accept  the order that they have tried and are trying to impose by force, blockade and threats.  And secondly, the outcome of both Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 which give a real chance  to peacefully restore the territorial integrity of Ukraine by coming to an agreement directly  with the DPR and LPR with Russia, Germany and France as mediators, contradicts  the entire logic of the anti-Russia project. And it can only be sustained by the constant cultivation of the image of an internal and external enemy. And I would add — under  the protection and control of the Western powers. 

This is what is actually happening. First of all, we are facing the creation of a climate of fear  in Ukrainian society, aggressive rhetoric, indulging neo-Nazis and militarising the country.  Along with that we are witnessing not just complete dependence but direct external control,  including the supervision of the Ukrainian authorities, security services and armed forces  by foreign advisers, military „development“ of the territory of Ukraine and deployment  of NATO infrastructure. It is no coincidence that the aforementioned flagrant law  on „indigenous peoples“ was adopted under the cover of large-scale NATO exercises  in Ukraine. 

This is also a disguise for the takeover of the rest of the Ukrainian economy  and the exploitation of its natural resources. The sale of agricultural land is not far off,  and it is obvious who will buy it up. From time to time, Ukraine is indeed given financial  resources and loans, but under their own conditions and pursuing their own interests, with  preferences and benefits for Western companies. By the way, who will pay these debts  back? Apparently, it is assumed that this will have to be done not only by today’s generation  of Ukrainians but also by their children, grandchildren and probably great-grandchildren. 

The Western authors of the anti-Russia project set up the Ukrainian political system in such  a way that presidents, members of parliament and ministers would change but the attitude  of separation from and enmity with Russia would remain. Reaching peace was the main election slogan of the incumbent president. He came to power with this. The promises  turned out to be lies. Nothing has changed. And in some ways the situation in Ukraine  and around Donbas has even degenerated. 

In the anti-Russia project, there is no place either for a sovereign Ukraine or for the political  forces that are trying to defend its real independence. Those who talk about reconciliation  in Ukrainian society, about dialogue, about finding a way out of the current impasse are  labelled as „pro-Russian“ agents. 

Again, for many people in Ukraine, the anti-Russia project is simply unacceptable.  And there are millions of such people. But they are not allowed to raise their heads. They  have had their legal opportunity to defend their point of view in fact taken away from them.  They are intimidated, driven underground. Not only are they persecuted for their  convictions, for the spoken word, for the open expression of their position, but they are also  killed. Murderers, as a rule, go unpunished.       

Today, the ”right“ patriot of Ukraine is only the one who hates Russia. Moreover, the entire  Ukrainian statehood, as we understand it, is proposed to be further built exclusively on this  idea. Hate and anger, as world history has repeatedly proved this, are a very shaky  foundation for sovereignty, fraught with many serious risks and dire consequences. 

All the subterfuges associated with the anti-Russia project are clear to us. And we will never  allow our historical territories and people close to us living there to be used against Russia.  And to those who will undertake such an attempt, I would like to say that this way they will  destroy their own country. 

The incumbent authorities in Ukraine like to refer to Western experience, seeing it  as a model to follow. Just have a look at how Austria and Germany, the USA and Canada live next to each other. Close in ethnic composition, culture, in fact sharing one language, they  remain sovereign states with their own interests, with their own foreign policy. But this does  not prevent them from the closest integration or allied relations. They have very conditional,  transparent borders. And when crossing them the citizens feel at home. They create  families, study, work, do business. Incidentally, so do millions of those born in Ukraine who  now live in Russia. We see them as our own close people. 

Russia is open to dialogue with Ukraine and ready to discuss the most complex issues. But  it is important for us to understand that our partner is defending its national interests but  not serving someone else’s, and is not a tool in someone else’s hands to fight against us. 

We respect the Ukrainian language and traditions. We respect Ukrainians‘ desire to see  their country free, safe and prosperous. 

l am confident that true sovereignty of Ukraine is possible only in partnership with Russia.  Our spiritual, human and civilizational ties formed for centuries and have their origins  in the same sources, they have been hardened by common trials, achievements  and victories. Our kinship has been transmitted from generation to generation. It is  in the hearts and the memory of people living in modern Russia and Ukraine, in the blood  ties that unite millions of our families. Together we have always been and will be many  times stronger and more successful. For we are one people. 

Today, these words may be perceived by some people with hostility. They can be interpreted  in many possible ways. Yet, many people will hear me. And I will say one thing – Russia has  never been and will never be „anti-Ukraine“. And what Ukraine will be — it is up to its  citizens to decide.       

Publication status

Published in sections: News, Transcripts

Publication date: July 12, 2021, 17:00

Direct link: en.kremlin.ru/d/66181      

Aktualisiert am Donnerstag,

d. 8. September 2022,

Dr. Dieter Weigert,

Berlin – Prenzlauer Berg

Aus GENF: Eine freie Stimme der „freien Welt“ – gegen MAINSTREAM und gekaufte Journaille

Der COURRIER, eine Tageszeitung aus Genf, veröffentlicht auch manchmal Provokatives, Anti-Mainstream! Dazu gehört Geschäftssinn, Gefühl für die Red Lines, in Zeiten der NATO-Kriege ein Gespür, wieweit man in der neutralen Schweiz gehen kann, wenn man sich mit den großen Nachbarn Frankreich, Italien und Deutschland und der Wallstreet anlegt.

DENNOCH: Vor einigen TAGEN entschied sich die Redaktion für die Veröffentlichung einer solchen Provokation: ich zitiere –

ON NOUS ÉCRIT

Une guerre téléguidée 

LUNDI 22 AOÛT 2022 VOTRE LETTRE

Marcel gerber pointe le rôle des Etats-Unis dans le déclenchement du conglit russo-ukrainien.

Ein Leserbrief! Wer sich bei deutschen Leserbriefredaktionen schon einmal um die Veröffentlichung eines Beitrages bemüht hat, versteht die Hintergründe! Es muss passen !!! Aber es soll auch ANECKEN ! Ein sehr schmaler Grat – denn der Beitrag soll auch keinen der etwa 7 000 Leser davon abhalten, die Ausgabe des nächsten Tages zu kaufen.

Kriegszerstörungen im Stadion von Donezk

Hier nun der volle Text des Beitrages:

La guerre actuelle en Ukraine est une guerre provoquée et voulue par les USA contre la Russie, avec la complicité active du Royaume-Uni, de la France et du Canada. Leur vieux désir de dominer ce pays, de supprimer un adversaire (URSS ou Russie) et de piller ses immenses richesses naturelles est loin de dater de la période actuelle et a été très souvent avancé et théorisé par l’élite politique US. Un des buts de cette guerre est aussi d’obliger l’UE à couper tous liens économiques avec la Russie quelles qu’en soient les conséquences pour les peuples européens ou du tiers monde.

La Russie a tout fait pour éviter cette guerre programmée, en exigeant en particulier depuis 2015 que soient respectés les accords de Minsk et la non-appartenance de l’Ukraine à l’OTAN. Mission impossible puisque contraire à la politique imposée par les USA et leur bras armé l’OTAN. La Russie, avec son pouvoir corrompu et donc fragile, privilégie pourtant la stabilité (ou la coexistence pacifique comme l’URSS auparavant) afin que ce pouvoir ne soit pas mis en question.

Cette guerre US à débuté par la préparation et la réussite du coup d’Etat de 2014, qui a nécessité un investissement avoué de 5 milliards de dollars. Elle s’est poursuivie ensuite par les bombardements continus sur le Donbass et par l’encadrement et l’armement aux normes de l’OTAN de l’armée ukrainienne et de ses régiments néonazis, avec des instructeurs US, canadiens, anglais et français. Ainsi qu’avec des manœuvres militaires internationales sur le sol ukrainien et navales en mer Noire.

La guerre «chaude» actuelle date du 16 février dernier en conformité avec la décision du gouvernement Zelenski du printemps 2021 de reconquérir militairement le Donbass et la Crimée. Ce jour-là a commencé le bombardement massif des républiques autoproclamées, prélude à leur invasion par les troupes massées dans la région, régiments néonazis en tête, pour faire le «nettoyage», soit l’éradication des ressortissants russophones ayant soutenu l’autonomie de leur région dans le cadre ukrainien. Les rapports quotidiens de l’OSCE démontrent que les bombardements sur le Donbass ont été multipliés par 50 à partir du 16 février.

L’«opération spéciale» russe du 24 février a donc été rendue inéluctable, ce que savait pertinemment l’auteur réel de cette guerre, le gouvernement des USA, ce qui a permis à Biden et consorts de l’annoncer avec certitude en indiquant sa date à quelques jours près. Dès la fin de l’URSS, certains milieux dirigeants US annonçaient déjà une future guerre russo-ukrainienne…

Marcel Gerber,
Le Mont

Man muss sich den ersten Satz noch einmal auf der Zunge zergehen lassen:

„Der aktuelle Krieg in der Ukraine ist ein Krieg, der durch die USA mit der aktiven Komplizenschaft des Vereinigten Königreiches, Frankreichs und Kanadas gegen Russland provoziert und gewollt wurde.“

Wer in einer deutschen bürgerlichen Mainstream-Zeitung der letzten Wochen mir einen derartig brisanten Beitrag zuschicken kann, erhält in meiner Berliner Stammkneipe ein gutes großes Freibier !

Dr. Dieter Weigert, Berlin Prenzlauer Berg, 22. August 2022

Kleinrussen, Mythen, Kosaken, Ukrainer ?

Russlands Krieg gegen die Ukraine hat mein Weltbild erschüttert, die scheinbar gesicherten Kenntnisse über Russen, Ukrainer und Kosaken zu Pulver zerrieben. Aber dennoch – angesicht der vielfältigen historischen Wahrheiten, die man vergeblich in unseren Massenmedien sucht – sympatisiere ich auch im Sommer 2022 mit dem hymnischen Священная война !

Russe oder Kleinrusse ?
Bäuerin Russlands, der Ukraine, Kleinrusslands oder Neurusslands um 1900
ein klein-, weiß-, oder neurussischer Pope ?

Nehmen wir einige Lexika der letzten anderthalb Jahrhunderte zur Hand – „Allgemeines deutsches Conversations-Lexikon“ Bd. 8 erschienen 1849 in Hamburg. Setzen wir fort beim anerkannten Meyer, Bände 11 und 17 , erschienen in Leipzig 1905 und 1907, werfen wir eine Blick in den vierbändigen DDR-Meyer, Bd. IV, erschienen in Leipzig 1981, in Knaurs Lexikon von 1939, in den bundesrepublikanischen Herder von 1950.

Die Karte des zaristischen Südrussland

Südrußland im Jahre 1907

lässt keine inner-russischen Grenzen sichtbar werden. Die heutige Ukraine wird unter Kleinrußland lexikalisch erfasst:

Meyers Lexikon von 1907

„UKRAINE“ ist kein politisch-staatlicher Begriff, mehr ein Wort zur Umschreibung einer geographisch-historischen Situation:

Meyers Lexikon 1911

Zur begrifflichen Verwirrung trägt auch nicht unwesentlich bei, dass während der Jahrhunderte der kolonialen Okkupation von Territorien der heutigen Ukraine der Begriff der RUTHENEN ( aus der latinisierten Form) verwendet wurde.

Die „Ruthenen“ im Nordosten des Habsbuger „Völkergefängnisses“
Der Blick des kolonialen Okkupanten auf die „SCHÖNEN“ des Landes
„Völkerkunde“ der Habsburger

Jenen Lexikon-reifen Erkenntnissen liegen Jahrhunderte der zaristischen, osmanischen und habsburgischen Krieg um die Beute zugrunde, die an einer Karte aus der „Weltgeschichte, Bd. 5“, erschienen zu Sowjetzeiten in Moskau im Jahre 1958, in deutscher Sprache gedruckt in Berlin-DDR im Jahre 1966 (Verlag der Wissenschaften), ablesbar sind (zwischen S. 704 und 705)

Zum Verständnis – die dazu gehörige Legende:

Die Lexika des mittleren und späten 20. Jahrhunderts propagieren je nach staatlichen oder privatwirtschaftlichen Interessenlagen differenzierte Darstellungen.

Da ist die aus meiner Sicht interessantes Karte der frühen 50er Jahre in einem Oberschulatlas der DDR: die Großbauten der Kommunismus in der Sowjetunion – eindeutiger Schwerpunkt die Gebiete der UKRAINE !

Umkämpft heute: Kachowka, Melitopol, der „Südukrainische Kanal“, Saporoshje und Dnepropetrowsk

Besonders auffallend: das Bild Deutschlands zum Vergleich (rechts oben) zeigt keine innerdeutschen Grenzen – versteckter Hinweis, unwieweit die DDR selbst noch im Jahre 1954 sich dem Ziel der deutschen Einheit verpflichtet fühlte !!! Im selben Atlas eine Karte zur territorialen Situation der 20er/30er Jahre und darin ablesbar die sowjetischen Westgrenzen ohne große Gebiete der heutigen Ukraine :

Dem historischen Verständnis förderlich ist selbstverständlich ein Blick in ein deutsche Lexikon des Jahre 1939:

Die Sprache des gegenwärtigen Regimes in Kiew lässt eine verräterische Nähe zu

Jenseits der Elbe (aus Berliner Sicht) eine nun wieder unpolitische Sicht (HERDER 1950) – mit Schwerpunkt Volkswirtschaft:

Die späte DDR druckt die Grenzen der sowjetischen Unionsrepublik Ukraine selbstverständlich im vierbändigen MEYER von 1981 (Bd. IV) ab:

Der „kleine“ DDR-MEYER verweist natürlich in einer zweiten Karte auf die wirtschaftliche Bedeutung der Ukraine für die gesamte Sowjetunion:

Natürlich wird den Wirtschaftskarten eine Legende beigefügt – die uns auch 40 Jahre später hilft, das Kriegsgeschehen besser zu verstehen.

Belassen wir es dabei, um dem Lesen Gelegenheit zur freien Suche zu lassen.

Letztes Beispiel der Vielfal der lexikalischen Beschäftgung mit der Ukraine (lange vor WIKIPEDIA):

Le petit Larousse Grand Format 1995

Stimmt man mir aber zu, wenn ich nach dem Meditieren über diese geschichtlichen Fakten und dem Studium der aktuellen verwirrenden Situation in den Gebieten, die (noch) Ukraine genannt werden, wenn ich (ohne Zensur und Denunziantentum) leise summe: Священная война !

Dr. Dieter Weigert, Berlin Prenzlauer Berg, 19. Juli 2022

Meister SUNZI zur „Kriegskunst“ der russischen Generale in der Ukraine

Ob er wohl gelehrt und gelesen wird, der ehrwürdige Chinese SUNZI, an den angesehenen Stabsakademien der russischen Streitkräfte ? Sind Präsident Putin und seine Generäle mit dem Denken jenes Militärstategen aus den Jahren zwischen 544 und 496 v.u.Z. vertraut? Der bisherige Verlauf der „spezialnaja woennaja operazija“in der Ukraine gibt Anlass zu berechtigtem Zweifel.
Der renommierte Balkan- und Kaukasusexperte un Militärjournalist Jewgeni Krutikow kommt in seinem Beitrag für RT.DE vom 2. Juli d.J. unter dem Titel „Versuch einer Prognose: Wo wird die russische Armee in der Ukraine stoppen?“ zu ernüchternden Feststellungen. Doch bevor wir uns seiner Analyse zuwenden, lassen Sie uns auf eine geopolitische Niederlage der Sowjetarmee in den 70er Jahren des 20. Jahrhunderts – also noch v o r A f g h a n i s t a n – zu sprechen kommen: das strategische und taktische Versagen der sowjetischen Militärs im Kampf gegen die Armee des Apartheid-Regimes Südafrikas auf dem Boden Angolas. Offizielle Quellen berichten von russischen ( und DDR-) Waffen und Beratern im Offiziersrang an der Seite der MPLA, die den Vormarsch der südafrikanischen Armee 1975 nicht verhindern konnten, aber diese strategischen Probleme auf die zahlenmäßige Überlegenheit der südafrikanischen Einheiten zurückführten. (Die südafrikanische Armee hatte moderne russische Waffen im Wert von über einer Milliarde Dollar erbeutet !) Berichte freier Journalisten aus den USA, Afrikas und Westeuropas, die auf „off-the-record“-Gespräche mit Zeitzeugen, hochrangigen Geheimdienstmitarbeitern und Experten aus diplomatischen Vertretungen bei der UNO geben jedoch in Bezug auf die Rolle der sowjetischen Berater ein für die Sowjetarmee ernüchterndes Bild: die fehlerhaften strategischen und taktischen Vorgaben der russischen Offiziere seien die Hauptursache für das Desaster auf dem Gefechtsfeld. Jene russischen Offiziere stützten sich bei ihren Analysen und den Schlußfolgerungen für das Vorgehen der MPLA-Einheiten auf Erfahrungen der siegreichen Roten Armee im II. Weltkrieg – waffenmäßige und zahlenmäßige Überlegenheit gegenüber dem Feind, keine Scheu vor eigenen hohen Opferzahlen ! Diese informellen Berichte belegen auch die Unfähigkeit der Berater, ihre Anweisungen den Bdingungen des sog. „Buschkrieges“ auf afrikanischem Boden anzupassen.

die grüne Fläche zeigt das von der sudafrikanischen Armee und ihrer Verbündeten UNITA besetzte Gebiet Angolas im Herbst 1975

In dieser kritischen Situation – wenige Wochen vor der Ausrufung der Unabhängigkeit Angolas in Luanda – sendet die MPLA-Führung einen Hilferuf an Fidel Castro, der es schafft, in kürzester Zeit, nicht nur fähige Berater, sondern vor allem moderne Waffen und erfahrene Kampftruppen und Spezialisten in Stärke von über 35.000 Mann nach Angola zu verlegen und die südafrikanischen Truppen entscheidend zu schlagen.

Die Sieger mit „Stalin-Orgel“

Der Sieg der MPLA und der kubanischen Verbündeten bei Kifangondo am 10. November 1975 war die Voraussetzung für die Machtübernahme der MPLA und die Ausrufung der Deokratischen Volksrepublik Angola.

Militärexperten und erfahrene Journalisten kennen diese Zusammenhänge und ziehen ihre Schlußfolgerungen (auch unter Berücksichtigung des Rückzugs der Sowjetarmee aus Afghanistan) , wenn sie heute über die Ukraine ohne ideologische Scheuklappen berichten.

So verweist der schon erwähnte Jewgeni Krutikow auf das widersprüchliche Vorgehen der russischen Generale im Raum der Schlangeninsel, auf das Unverständnis vieler Experten angesichts der bisher ausgebliebenen Einkesselung größerer ukrainischer Truppenteile, auf die verständlichen Fragen nach den Ursachen von erfolgreichen Durchbrüchen ukrainischer Einheiten durch die russische Front an wichtigen, sicher geglaubten Abschnitten. Eine grundlegende Frage sei nach Meinung der Experten weiterhin die Besetzung logistisch bedeutender Bevölkerungszentren – angesichts der zunehmenden Wichtigkeit westlicheer Ausrüstungs- und Waffenlieferungen an die Ukraine.
Da der „eingeweihte“ J. Krutikow die Frage zum weiteren strategischen Vorgehen der russischen Streitkräfte in den Vordergrund seiner Überlegungen stellt, muss angenommen werden, dass es erhebliche Meinungsverschiedenheiten unter den russischen Politikern und Militärführern über die Zielrichtungen der Vorstöße nach dem absehbaren Abschluß der Operationen im Donbass gibt.

Industriezentrum Kriwoi Rog

Aus Krutikows Beitrag kann man herauslesen, dass er zu jener Gruppe von Experten gehört, für die die nächsten unmittelbaren Ziele (aus politischen und militärstrategischen Erwägungen) in den Räumen Kriwoi Rog, Dnjepropetrowsk, Saparoschje, aber auch im Südwesten Nikolajew

Hafen und Stadt Odessa

und Odessa liegen müssten. Zu weiteren Szenarien hält er sich wohlweislich zurück. Wir lassen uns überraschen – und fragen bei Meister SUNZI nach: Er kommt gleich zur Sache –

„Der Krieg ist für jeden Staat ein Ereignis von großer Bedeutung. Er ist der Ort, der über Leben und Tod entscheidet,
er ist der Weg, der das Überleben sichert oder in den Untergang führt. Unumgänglich ist es, ihn eingehend zu untersuchen.
Wer zu einer sachlichen Bestandsaufnahme gelangen will,
läßt sich von fünf Gesichtspunkten leiten und wägt eine Reihe von Voraussetzungen ab:
erstens die Moral,
zweitens das Klima,
drittens das Gelände,
viertens die Führung
und fünftens die Ordnung.
Die Moral bewirkt, daß das Volk sich mit dem Herrscher im Einvernehmen befindet. Nur so wird es auf Leben und Tod für ihn einstehen und allen Gefahren trotzen.
Das Klima wird bestimmt durch Dunkel und Helligkeit, Kälte und Hitze sowie den Gang der vier ]ahreszeiten.
Das Gelände liegt hoch oder niedrig, fern oder nah, zeigt sich unwegsam oder zugänglich, weiträumig oder beengt, verheißt Tod oder Leben.
Die Führung verkörpert Weisheit, Glaubwürdigkeit, Menschlichkeit, Tapferkeit und Strenge.
Die Ordnung umfaßt die Organisation der Truppen, die Zuweisung der Verantwortlichkeiten und die Beherrschung der Logistik.
Mit diesen fünf Dingen ist jeder Heerführer vertraut …“

SUNZI (auch SUN WU)

Sollte der Meister Sunzi heute der russischen Führung Noten verteilen, würde sie schon für Punkt 1 – der Moral – die schlechteste Note erhalten, weil sie zwar die eigene Moral richtig, die Moral des Gegners aber total falsch eingeschätzt hatte. Ebenso ungenügend würde sie bei Punkt 5 abschneiden, vor allem bezüglich der „Beherrschung der Logistik“ und der „Organisation der Truppen“, worin mir jeder Militärexperte zustimmen wird. Aber – jeder lese nach bei Meister Sunzi !

Dr. Dieter Weigert, Berlin Juli 2022

USA-Präsidenten und die Tücken der Rhetorik

Sie sind wahrlich nicht bekannt wegen ihrer rhetorischen Glanzleistungen, die Trump, Nixon, Truman und die anderen Herren im Weißen Haus – Joseph Biden jr. macht da keine Ausnahme.

January 10, 2021, Washington, District of Columbia, USA: United States President Joe Biden makes closing remarks at the virtual Summit for Democracy in the South Court Auditorium at the White House in Washington, DC, December 6, 2021 Washington USA – ZUMAs152 20210110_zaa_s152_011 Copyright: xChrisxKleponisx

Die Resonanz auf seine heutige Rede vor den Kameras der TV-Weltnetze lässt ihn vermutlich in einigen Tagen oder Wochen nach dem Sündenbock, dem Redenschreiber von gestern, rufen – „wie konnte man mir einen solchen Unsinn in das Manuskript einarbeiten ?“

Worum geht es? Um die Passage von Demokratie und Autokratie und die mystischen Beschwörungen der Geschlossenheit, der politischen Einheit des Westens im heutigen medienwirksamen Auftritt. Darum gehe es eigentlich in der Ukraine. Deshalb müsse dieser Krieg „bis zum letzten ukrainischen Soldaten“ in Mariupol und den Dörfern und Städten der Umgebung geführt werden – mit dem Geld und den Waffen des Westens, ohne die Alternative der Kapitulation. Wehe den Abweichlern, wehe den Weichlingen !!!

(Nicht gerade das neueste Modell, aber für die Ukrainer tauglich)

Heute, am 21. April 2922, gegen 17 Uhr MEZ, verkündete Präsident Biden ein neues Paket militärischer „Hilfe“ für die Ukraine und ließ zur Begründung zwischen den Howitzers und taktischen Dronen jene Passagen einfließen, die von manchen Kommentatoren wörtlich zitiert werden : es sei geopolitisch ein „critical window now“ in Ringen zwischen Autokratismus und Demokratie ! Das türkische TV-Weltnetz TRT WORLD sendet diesen Abschnitt direkt –

wie auch das aus DOHA (Qatar) sendende Network AL JAZEERA.

Möge jeder des Hörens, Sehens und Lesens Kundige – auch ohne RT oder andere russische Originalquellen – zwischen den Zeilen erkennen, was die Beschwörungsformeln des USA-Präsidenten wert sind – nicht die Dollars, die den Medienexperten im Weißen Haus auf die Konten überwiesen werden.

Mit solidarischen Grüßen

Dr. Dieter Weigert Berlin, 21. April 2022, 19: 45 Uhr

Die nächste Welle der Weltgeschichte? oder: Liegt THE ECONOMIST diesmal richtig?

The Economist 16th April 2022 mit Original-Bildunterschrift

Die Weltgeschichte bewegt sich in Wellen – abgetan vor Jahrzehnten als lächerliche These eines verstaubten Historikers – heute so aktuell wie nie zuvor! Auch der in London produzierte ECONOMIST kommt nicht umhin, unterschwellig dieses NARRATIV aus der Mottenkiste herauszukramen.

Das Selbstverständnis des Magazins:

Independent, rigorous and open

The Economist Group pursues progress for individuals, organisations and the world. A leader in analysis, intelligence and influence, we combine local insight with global expertise to advise and inform millions. Our reporting, products and services build the capability to navigate the present and prepare for the future, and reflect our commitment to excellence and independent thought.

Britische, italienische, asiatische Unternehmensgruppen steuern den Kurs des ECONOMIST. Was kann man erwarten? Eine gründliche Suche nach Untiefen, Sandbänken, Sturmzentren im Ozean von Weltwirtschaft und Weltpolitik von morgen und übermorgen?

Außen CHINA, innen die geopolitischen Ängste von Agnelli & Co

Man nähert sich der geopolitischen Wirklichkeit! Die Ausgabe des ECONOMIST vom 16. April verspricht mit dem Titelbild China, zieht den Leser des Magazins auf den inneren Seiten aber doch tiefer in die Gefühlswelt des unsicher schwankenden Börsianers von London, Mailand und Frankfurt.

Da ist sie – die neue Welle der Weltgeschichte – allmählich, aber doch seismisch spürbar die Abkehr bedeutender Gesellschaften und Staaten Asiens, Afrikas, Lateinamerikas vom bisher so dominanten Riesen USA. Politische Erdbebenforscher der Denkfabriken des Westens spürten mit dem erfolgreichen Eingeifen des russischen Militär im syrischen Bürgerkrieg auf der Seite der legitimen Regierung in Damaskus den Beginn einer geopoliischen Wende, sozusagen am Meeresboden das Entstehen einer neuen Welle – die nach 1990 so verlachte, verspottete „Regionalmacht“ Moskau zeigte ihre Zähne. Ein Jahrzehnt später ist hinter den Beschimpfungen und Schmähungen des russischen Präsidenten aus Washington, London etc. die Ohnmacht zu spüren: was haben die militärischen Einsätze in Afghanistan, im Irak, in Afrika, was haben die lauthals so gepriesenen Instrumente der Sanktionen, Geheimdienst-Operationen, Medien-Fakes gebracht außen milliardenschweren Kosten? Man berauscht sich publikumswirksam an UNO-Abstimmungen, sucht aber fieberhaft in den politologischen Zirkeln nach neuen Wegen und Auswegen. Daher die Empfehlun an alle Freunde und Kollegen – studiert die neueste Ausgabe des ECONOMIST !!! Lest zwischen den Zeilen, welche Sorgen sich Agnelli angesichts der neuen Welle der Weltgeschichte macht!

Man spürt,sie denken schon über die Ukraine,über den Verlust ihrer ASOW-Banden hinaus. Sie suchen nach Wegen, wie sie ohne Gesichtsverlust in der POST-Ukraine-Periode die Gipfeltreffen mit PUTIN organisieren können. Man möchte ihnen Erfolg wünschen – als Lektüre für Nostalgiker: Ostrowskis „Wie der Stahl gehärtet wurde“ aus den 30er Jahren des 20. Jahrhunderts.

Mit solidarischen Grüßen aus Berlin Prenzlauer Berg

Dr. Dieter Weigert, Ostermontag, 18. April 2022

nochmals: ASOW-Neonazis – Wer liest „Die Zeit“ oder die „Kreiszeitung“ ?

ein aktuelles Bild des neofaschistischen Bataillons ASOW

Wer in Deutschland Symbole des Mitgefühls mit den Opfern der ukrainischen Ultra-„Nationalisten“, z.B. der neofaschistischen ASOW-Kämpfer, wird strafrechtlich verfolgt. Wer sich mehrseitig informieren will, hat große Mühe, in der Vielfalt der Print- und TV-Medien etwas Seriöses zu finden. Original-russische Quellen sind im Netz und in den Satelliten-Kanälen gesperrt. In den letzten Wochen konnte man aber doch Kritisches finden – Berichte über das sogenannte ASOW-Bataillon: in der seriösen „Zeit“ (15.März), in der weitgehend unbekannten regionalen „Kreiszeitung“ (31.März) und – überraschenderweise – im französischen Fernsehsender „TV5EUROPE“ (31.März). Die Zahl der Empfänger und der Suchenden dieser Medien in Deutschland kann man an den Fingern abzählende bzw. sind einschlägig bekannte wenige Intellektuelle. Die politischen Köpfe der gegenwärtigen „AMPEL“-Regierungsparteien, auch der „LINKEN“ gehören nicht dazu, sie unterstützen lauthals den ukrainischen Botschafter in Berlin, Andrij Melnyk, bei seinem Bemühen, die Kriegsverbrechen der ASOW-Banden unter den Tisch zu kehren: „Lassen Sie sie in Ruhe“! Auf gut Deutsch – lassen sie in Ruhe morden !!!!

Die ASOW- „War Criminels“

Ich erlaube mir deshalb, die Beiträge in der „Zeit“ und in der „Kreiszeitung“ (mit stillschweigender Erlaubnis der Herausgeber und Verfasser) hier wiederzugeben. Vielleicht trägt das dazu bei, mehr Scheinwerfer-Licht auf die Mordtaten der Neonazis in der Ukraine zu richten.

Der Beitrag in der „ZEIT“

Asow-Regiment  Extreme Verteidiger 

Das Asow-Regiment kämpft in Mariupol verbissen gegen Russland. Es besteht aus  Nationalisten und Rechtsradikalen, in der Vergangenheit soll es Verbrechen begangen  haben. 

Eine Analyse von Hauke Friederichs  15. März 2022, 7:28 Uhr

Ein maskierter Mann im olivgrünen Kapuzenpullover drückt Patronen in sein Magazin.  Vorher tunkt er sie in Schweinefett. Damit, so verkündet das Asow-Regiment, werde gegen  die „Kadyrow-Orks“ gekämpft, also gegen paramilitärische Einheiten aus Tschetschenien,  die aufseiten Russlands in der Ukraine ins Gefecht ziehen und viele muslimische Milizionäre  in ihren Reihen haben. Das Asow-Regiment Will seine Feinde offenbar nicht nur vernichten,  sondern sie auch noch demütigen, schließlich gilt das Schwein im Islam als unreines Tier.  Das Propagandavideo mit dieser Szene wurde auf vielen ukrainischen Twitter-Accounts  geteilt. Das Asow-Regiment unterstützt momentan die ukrainischen Streitkräfte dabei, die  hart umkämpfte Hafenstadt Mariupol am Asowschen Meer zu verteidigen; die Einheiten  sollen bereits zahlreiche russische Panzer zerstört und Soldaten getötet haben. Das  Regiment umfasste vor den heftigen Gefechten um Mariupol gut 2.000 Mann, von denen  eine große Zahl ultranationalistisch und rechtsextrem eingestellt ist.      

Der russischen Propaganda dienen die uniformierten Rechtsradikalen im Dienst des  ukrainischen Staates als vermeintlicher Beleg für die Gesinnung der Regierung in Kiew.  Präsident Wladimir Putin hatte den Angriff auf die Ukraine unter anderem mit dem Ziel  gerechtfertigt, das Nachbarland „entnazifizieren“ zu wollen. Bereits die Annexion der Krim  und den Kampf im Donbass hatte die russische Regierung mit den Untaten der dortigen  „faschistischen Junta“ gerechtfertigt. 

Jüngst gab der russische Außenminister Sergej Lawrow dem Asow-Regiment die Schuld an  einem Militärschlag gegen eine Geburtsklinik in Mariupol. Das Krankenhaus habe dessen  Kämpfern als Rückzugsort gedient. Das Regiment kommt auch in den russischen  Staatsmedien und in sozialen Netzwerken häufig vor. Die Machthaber im Kreml verbreiten  so das Narrativ, die Ukraine sei von Neonazis beherrscht, die einen Vernichtungskampf  gegen die russische Minderheit im Land führten. Sie blenden aus, dass bei der jüngsten  Wahl in der Ukraine keine rechtsradikale Partei den Sprung ins Parlament geschafft hat. Der  ukrainische Präsident Wolodymyr Selenskyj hat jüdische Wurzeln und Familienangehörige  im Holocaust verloren. Für neonazistisches Gedankengut hat er nichts übrig.  Das Regiment entstand vor acht Jahren als Asow-Bataillon. Der Name verweist auf das  Asowsche Meer. Einer der Gründer war Andrej Biletzki, Anführer der neonazistischen  Organisationen Sozial-Nationale Versammlung und Patriot der Ukraine. Als Russland 2014  die Krim annektierte und angebliche Separatisten, von denen viele aus dem russischen  Geheimdienst FSB kamen, Teile des Donbass besetzten, gründeten sich in der Ukraine  zahlreiche Freiwilligenverbände.  „SIawa Ukrajini! Herojam slawa!“  Rechtsradikale, die bereits bei Protesten gegen den prorussischen Präsidenten Wiktor  Janukowítsch auf dem Euromaidan eine Rolle gespielt hatten, zogen in die Schlacht gegen  die „Kommunisten“ aus Moskau. Da sie politisch kaum Bedeutung erlangten, suchten  Rechtsextreme durch den bewaffneten Kampf ihren Einfluss in der Ukraine auszuweiten.  Das gelang vor allem der Asow-Bewegung, der enge Beziehungen zum früheren  Innenminister der Ukraine, Arsen Awakow, nachgesagt werden.  Deren Mitglieder inszenierten sich als Landesverteidiger und erlangten ab 2014 durchaus  breite gesellschaftliche Anerkennung. So übernahmen viele Ukrainer, auch Politiker und  Militärs, Parolen der Rechtsradikalen wie „Slawa Ukrajini! Herojam slawa!“ – „Ruhm der  Ukraine! Ruhm den Helden!“. Der Slogan geht auf die Zwanzigerjahre zurück und wurde von  Stepan Bandera und seinen Anhängern geprägt. Sie bildeten einen einflussreichen und  gewaltbereiten Flügel der Organisation Ukrainischer Nationalisten (OUN), die in der  Zwischenkriegszeit für einen unabhängigen ukrainischen Staat kämpften. Die  Ultranationalisten verübten Anschläge und sympathisierten mit dem nationalsozialistischen  Deutschland. Zwei Kompanien der OUN nahmen an der Seite der Wehrmacht 1941 am      

Angriff auf die Sowjetunion teil. Sie waren zudem in Pogrome gegen Juden und  Massenmorde involviert. Einen eigenen Staat bekamen die Ukrainer nicht. Das NS-Regime  ging gegen die OUN vor und deportierte Bandera in das KZ Sachsenhausen. 

Die Kämpfer des Asow-Bataillons wurden bald „schwarze Männchen“ genannt, eine  ukrainische Antwort auf die russischen Sondereinheiten, die im Donbass unterwegs waren,  zwar Militäruniformen trugen, aber keine Hoheitsabzeichen, und „grüne Männchen“  genannt wurden. Die Asow-Milizionäre kämpften vor allem in Charkiw und Mariupol sowie  in der Umgebung der Großstädte gegen diese Gegner.         

Der Beitrag in der „Kreiszeitung“:

Das Asow-Bataillon in den Medien – Das Kind beim Namen nennen

Erstellt: 31.03.2022, 11:52 Uhr

Von: Alexander Eser-Ruperti

Das Asow-Bataillon setzt sich vorwiegend aus Rechtsradikalen und Ultranationalisten zusammen. Auch in deutschen Medien findet das oft keine Erwähnung.

Berlin – Es war Andrij Melnyk der nach Berichten der Zeit über das Asow-Regiment zuletzt schrieb „Lassen Sie sie in Ruhe“. Die Botschaft war klar: Der ukrainische Botschafter in Deutschland will keine Kritik am Asow-Bataillon.

Während die Zeit zu Melnyks Unmut ausführlich über die Geisteshaltung der Einheit berichtet hatte, folgen einige deutsche Medien dem Aufruf offensichtlich. Immer wieder finden sich unkritische Berichte über die Struktur.

Unkritische Berichterstattung über das Asow-Bataillon in deutschen Medien: Das Beispiel Maksym Kagal

Besonders deutlich wird der bisweilen unkritische Umgang mit den Kämpfern des Asow-Regiments am Beispiel von Maksym Kagal. Maksym Kagal war Teil des Asow-Bataillons und kam bei der Verteidigung von Mariupol ums Leben.

Verschiedene Medien berichteten darüber, darunter die Welt. Bei ihr findet sich keinerlei Verweis auf den Hintergrund der Einheit. Die Wahrheit ist: Asow besteht überwiegend aus Rechtsradikalen und Nationalisten.

Dass dies keine bloße Behauptung ist, zeigt auch Maksym Kagal. Ein Artikel  im Focus ist mit einem Foto Kagals bebildert, auf dem dieser vor einer Asow-  Fahne mit schwarzer Sonne steht- einem rechtsradikalen Erkennungsmerkmal.

Die Welt, in deren Artikel es keinen einzigen Verweis auf  die Geisteshaltung des Asow-Bataillons gibt, nutzt derweil ein Zitat des  Trainers als Zwischenüberschrift – „Eine ehrliche und anständige Person“.

Eine  Einordnung sucht sich vergeblich. Ihre Bebilderung hingegen änderte die Welt,  ebenfalls ohne Erklärung: Zuvor hatte auch sie ein Bild Kagals mit Schwarzer  Sonne genutzt. 

Asow-Bataillon im Ukraine-Krieg: Überwiegend  Ultranationalisten und Rechtsradikale 

Besonders bei der Verteidigung von Mariupol im Ukraine-Krieg spielt das  Asow-Bataillon eine Rolle, die Stadt, bei deren Verteidigung auch Maksym  Kagal starb.

Die UN-Menschenrechtsorganisation OHCHR hatte dem  Regiment in der Vergangenheit bereits die Verübung schwerer Verbrechen,  darunter Vergewaltigung und Folter, im Donbass vorgeworfen.  Gründungsmitglied der Struktur ist unter anderem Andrej Biletzki: Biletzki  selbst ist laut Zeit Führungsfigur der Nazistrukturen „Sozial-Nationale  Versammlung“ und „Patriot der Ukraine“.       

Die Kontakte von Asow ins Ausland sind kein Geheimnis. Auch in Deutschland, wo Innenministerin Nancy Faeser (SPD) verstärkt gegen Rechtsextremismus vorgehen will, ist das bekannt. Auf eine Anfrage der Linken bestätigte die Bundesregierung Kontakte von Asow zu rechten Strukturen in Deutschland.

Rechte Ideologie ist bei Asow alles andere als eine Randerscheinung – das zeigt auch ein Video: In einem Propaganda-Clip tunken Asow-Mitglieder ihre Kugeln in Schweinefett. Dabei erklären sie, man wolle damit gegen

tschetschenische Einheiten aufseiten Russlands kämpfen – von ihnen sind viele Muslime.

Das Asow-Bataillon: Melnyks „mutige Kämpfer“ oder ein Rechtsradikaler als „ehrliche und anständige Person“

Man stelle sich vor, ähnliche Texte wie zu Maksym Kagal gäbe es in großen deutschen Medien über hiesige Rechtsradikale – zu denen das Asow-Bataillon ebenso blendende Kontakte unterhält. Texte, in denen nicht auf die Geisteshaltung einer ultranationalistischen und in großen Teilen rechtsradikalen Struktur aufmerksam gemacht wird, dafür aber nahestehende Personen eines Mitglieds mit Äußerungen über „eine ehrliche und anständige Person“ zitiert werden. All das unkommentiert. Die Verärgerung wäre zu Recht groß.

Die Tatsache, dass es sich um eine ausländische Organisation handelt, die bei der Verteidigung gegen den Angriffskrieg Russlands unter Wladimir Putin eine Rolle spielt, ändert nichts an ihrer Geisteshaltung. Es gibt zu denken, wenn sich der ukrainische Botschafter in Deutschland jeglicher Kritik an einer Einheit wie dem Asow-Regiment pauschal verwehrt und von „mutigen Kämpfern“ spricht. Mindestens genauso erschreckend ist es, wenn deutsche Medien der Aufforderung nach unkritischer Berichterstattung über eine ultranationalistische Struktur tatsächlich entsprechen.

(* kreiszeitung.de ist ein Angebot von IPPEN.MEDIA.)

Für dienigen unter den Lesern, die sich nicht abschrecken lassen, Originaltexte aus dem Moskauer Kreml aus dem Jahre 2021 zu lesen, hier eine Kostprobe – damals noch im Netz, heute GESPERRT !!!

Quelle:  http://www.en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/66181

Article by Vladimir Putin

”0n the Historical Unity  of Russians and Ukrainians“ 

July 12, 2021 17:00 

During the recent Direct Line, when I was asked about Russian-Ukrainian relations, I said  that Russians and Ukrainians were one people — a single whole. These words were not  driven by some short-term considerations or prompted by the current political context. It is  what l have said on numerous occasions and what I firmly believe. I therefore feel it  necessary to explain my position in detail and share my assessments of today’s situation. 

First of all, I would like to emphasize that the wall that has emerged in recent years  between Russia and Ukraine, between the parts of what is essentially the same historical  and spiritual space, to my mind is our great common misfortune and tragedy. These are,  first and foremost, the consequences of our own mistakes made at different periods  of time. But these are also the result of deliberate efforts by those forces that have always  sought to undermine our unity. The formula they apply has been known from time  immemorial — divide and rule. There is nothing new here. Hence the attempts to play  on the ”national question“ and sow discord among people, the overarching goal being  to divide and then to pit the parts of a single people against one another. 

To have a better understanding of the present and look into the future, we need to turn  to history. Certainly, it is impossible to cover in this article all the developments that have  taken place over more than a thousand years. But l will focus on the key, pivotal moments  that are important for us to remember, both in Russia and Ukraine. 

Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians are all descendants of Ancient Rus, which was  the largest state in Europe. Slavic and other tribes across the vast territory – from Ladoga,  Novgorod, and Pskov to Kiev and Chernigov — were bound together by one language (which  we now refer to as Old Russian), economic ties, the rule of the princes of the Rurik dynasty,  and — after the baptism of Rus — the Orthodox faith. The spiritual choice made by St.  Vladimir, who was both Prince of Novgorod and Grand Prince of Kiev, still largely determines  our affinity today.      

The throne of Kiev held a dominant position in Ancient Rus. This had been the custom  since the late 9th century. The Tale of Bygone Years captured for posterity the words of Oleg  the Prophet about Kiev, „Let it be the mother of all Russian cities.“ 

Later, like other European states of that time, Ancient Rus faced a decline of central rule  and fragmentation. At the same time, both the nobility and the common people perceived  Rus as a common territory, as their homeland. 

The fragmentation intensified after Batu Khan’s devastating invasion, which ravaged many  cities, including Kiev. The northeastern part of Rus fell under the control of the Golden  Horde but retained limited sovereignty. The southern and western Russian lands largely  became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which — most significantly — was referred  to in historical records as the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Russia. 

Members of the princely and ”boyar“ clans would change service from one prince  to another, feuding with each other but also making friendships and alliances. Voivode  Bobrok of Volyn and the sons of Grand Duke of Lithuania Algirdas — Andrey of Polotsk  and Dmitry of Bryansk — fought next to Grand Duke Dmitry lvanovich of Moscow  on the Kulikovo field. At the same time, Grand Duke of Lithuania Jogaila — son  of the Princess of Tver — led his troops to join with Mamai. These are all pages of our  shared history, reflecting its complex and multi-dimensional nature. 

Most importantly, people both in the western and eastern Russian lands spoke the same  language. Their faith was Orthodox. Up to the middle of the 15th century, the unified church  government remained in place. 

At a new stage of historical development, both Lithuanian Rus and Moscow Rus could have  become the points of attraction and consolidation of the territories of Ancient Rus. lt so  happened that Moscow became the center of reunification, continuing the tradition  of ancient Russian statehood. Moscow princes — the descendants of Prince Alexander  Nevsky — cast off the foreign yoke and began gathering the Russian lands. 

In the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, other processes were unfolding. ln the 14th century,  Lithuania’s ruling elite converted to Catholicism. In the 16th century, it signed the Union  of Lublin with the Kingdom of Poland to form the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth.  The Polish Catholic nobility received considerable land holdings and privileges  in the territory of Rus. In accordance with the 1596 Union of Brest, part of the western  Russian Orthodox clergy submitted to the authority of the Pope. The process of Polonization  and Latinization began, ousting Orthodoxy.       

As a consequence, in the 16—17th centuries, the liberation movement of the Orthodox  population was gaining strength in the Dnieper region. The events during the times  of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky became a turning point. His supporters struggled  for autonomy from the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth. 

ln its 1649 appeal to the king of the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Zaporizhian  Host demanded that the rights of the Russian Orthodox population be respected, that  the voivode of Kiev be Russian and of Greek faith, and that the persecution of the churches  of God be stopped. But the Cossacks were not heard. 

Bohdan Khmelnytsky then made appeals to Moscow, which were considered by the Zemsky  Sobor. On 1 October 1653, members of the supreme representative body of the Russian  state decided to support their brothers in faith and take them under patronage. ln January  1654, the Pereyaslav Council confirmed that decision. Subsequently, the ambassadors  of Bohdan Khmelnytsky and Moscow visited dozens of cities, including Kiev, whose  populations swore allegiance to the Russian tsar. Incidentally, nothing of the kind happened  at the conclusion of the Union of Lublin. 

In a letter to Moscow in 1654, Bohdan Khmelnytsky thanked Tsar Aleksey Mikhaylovich  for taking „the whole Zaporizhian Host and the whole Russian Orthodox world under  the strong and high hand of the Tsar“. lt means that, in their appeals to both the Polish king  and the Russian tsar, the Cossacks referred to and defined themselves as Russian  Orthodox people. 

Over the course of the protracted war between the Russian state and the Polish- Lithuanian Commonwealth, some of the hetmans, successors of Bohdan Khmelnytsky,  would „detach themselves“ from Moscow or seek support from Sweden, Poland, or Turkey.  But, again, for the people, that was a war of liberation. It ended with the Truce of Andrusovo  in 1667. The final outcome was sealed by the Treaty of Perpetual Peace in 1686.  The Russian state incorporated the city of Kiev and the lands on the left bank  of the Dnieper River, including Poltava region, Chernigov region, and Zaporozhye. Their  inhabitants were reunited with the main part of the Russian Orthodox people. These  territories were referred to as ”Malorossia“ (Little Russia). 

The name „Ukraine“ was used more often in the meaning of the Old Russian word  ”okraina“ (periphery), which is found in written sources from the 12th century, referring  to various border territories. And the word „Ukrainian“, judging by archival documents,  originally referred to frontier guards who protected the external borders.       

On the right bank, which remained under the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the old  orders were restored, and social and religious oppression intensified. On the contrary,  the lands on the left bank, taken under the protection of the unified state, saw rapid  development. People from the other bank of the Dnieper moved here en masse. They  sought support from people who spoke the same language and had the same faith. 

During the Great Northern War with Sweden, the people in Malorossia were not faced with  a choice of whom to side with. Only a small portion of the Cossacks supported Mazepa’s  rebellion. People of all orders and degrees considered themselves Russian and Orthodox. 

Cossack senior officers belonging to the nobility would reach the heights of political,  diplomatic, and military careers in Russia. Graduates of Kiev-Mohyla Academy played  a leading role in church life. This was also the case during the Hetmanate — an essentially  autonomous state formation with a special internal structure — and later in the Russian  Empire. Malorussians in many ways helped build a big common country — its statehood,  culture, and science. They participated in the exploration and development of the Urals,  Siberia, the Caucasus, and the Far East. Incidentally, during the Soviet period, natives  of Ukraine held major, including the highest, posts in the leadership of the unified state.  Suffice it to say that Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev, whose party biography was  most closely associated with Ukraine, led the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU)  for almost 30 years. 

In the second half of the 18th century, following the wars with the Ottoman Empire, Russia  incorporated Crimea and the lands of the Black Sea region, which became known  as Novorossiya. They were populated by people from all of the Russian provinces. After  the partitions of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Russian Empire regained  the western Old Russian lands, with the exception of Galicia and Transcarpathia, which  became part of the Austrian — and later Austro-Hungarian — Empire. 

The incorporation of the western Russian lands into the single state was not merely  the result of political and diplomatic decisions. it was underlain by the common faith,  shared cultural traditions, and — I would like to emphasize it once again — language  similarity. Thus, as early as the beginning of the 17th century, one of the hierarchs  of the Uniate Church, Joseph Rutsky, communicated to Rome that people in Moscovia  called Russians from the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth their brothers, that their written  language was absolutely identical, and differences in the vernacular were insignificant. He  drew an analogy with the residents of Rome and Bergamo. These are, as we know,  the center and the north of modern Italy.      

Many centuries of fragmentation and living within different states naturally brought about  regional language peculiarities, resulting in the emergence of dialects. The vernacular  enriched the literary language. Ivan Kotlyarevsky, Grigory Skovoroda, and Taras  Shevchenko played a huge role here. Their works are our common literary and cultural  heritage.

Taras Shevchenko wrote poetry in the Ukrainian language, and prose mainly  in Russian. The books of Nikolay Gogol, a Russian patriot and native of Poltavshchyna, are  written in Russian, bristling with Malorussian folk sayings and motifs. How can this heritage  be divided between Russia and Ukraine? And why do it?  The south-western lands of the Russian Empire, Malorussia and Novorossiya,  and the Crimea developed as ethnically and religiously diverse entities. Crimean Tatars,  Armenians, Greeks, Jews, Karaites, Krymchaks, Bulgarians, Poles, Serbs, Germans,  and other peoples lived here. They all preserved their faith, traditions, and customs. 

I am not going to idealise anything. We do know there were the Valuev Circular of 1863  an then the Ems Ukaz of 1876, which restricted the publication and importation of religious  and socio-political literature in the Ukrainian language. But it is important to be mindful  of the historical context. These decisions were taken against the backdrop of dramatic  events in Poland and the desire of the leaders of the Polish national movement to exploit  the „Ukrainian issue“ to their own advantage. I should add that works of fiction, books  of Ukrainian poetry and folk songs continued to be published. There is objective evidence  that the Russian Empire was witnessing an active process of development  of the Malorussian cultural identity within the greater Russian nation, which united  the Velikorussians, the Malorussians and the Belorussians. 

At the same time, the idea of Ukrainian people as a nation separate from the Russians  started to form and gain ground among the Polish elite and a part of the Malorussian  intelligentsia. Since there was no historical basis — and could not have been any,  conclusions were substantiated by all sorts of concoctions, which went as far as to claim  that the Ukrainians are the true Slavs and the Russians, the Muscovites, are not. Such  „hypotheses“ became increasingly used for political purposes as a tool of rivalry between  European states. 

Since the late 19th century, the Austro-Hungarian authorities had latched onto this  narrative, using it as a counterbalance to the Polish national movement and pro-Muscovite  sentiments in Galicia. During World War l, Vienna played a role in the formation of the so-called Legion of Ukrainian Sich Riflemen. Galicians suspected of sympathies with Orthodox  Christianity and Russia were subjected to brutal repression and thrown into  the concentration camps of Thalerhof and Terezin.  

Further developments had to do with the collapse of European empires, the fierce civil war  that broke out across the vast territory of the former Russian Empire, and foreign  intervention. 

After the February Revolution, in March 1917, the Central Rada was established in Kiev,  intended to become the organ of supreme power. ln November 1917, in its Third Universal,  it declared the creation of the Ukrainian People’s Republic (UPR) as part of Russia. 

ln December 1917, UPR representatives arrived in Brest-Litovsk, where Soviet Russia was  negotiating with Germany and its allies. At a meeting on 10 January 1918, the head  of the Ukrainian delegation read out a note proclaiming the independence of Ukraine.  Subsequently, the Central Rada proclaimed Ukraine independent in its Fourth Universal. 

The declared sovereignty did not last long. Just a few weeks later, Rada delegates signed  a separate treaty with the German bloc countries. Germany and Austria-Hungary were  at the time in a dire situation and needed Ukrainian bread and raw materials. In order  to secure large-scale supplies, they obtained consent for sending their troops and technical  staff to the UPR. In fact, this was used as a pretext for occupation. 

For those who have today given up the full control of Ukraine to external forces, it would be  instructive to remember that, back in 1918, such a decision proved fatal for the ruling  regime in Kiev. With the direct involvement of the occupying forces, the Central Rada was  overthrown and Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi was brought to power, proclaiming instead  of the UPR the Ukrainian State, which was essentially under German protectorate. 

ln November 1918 — following the revolutionary events in Germany and Austria-Hungary —  Pavlo Skoropadskyi, who had lost the support of German bayonets, took a different course,  declaring that „Ukraine is to take the lead in the formation of an All-Russian Federation“.  However, the regime was soon changed again. lt was now the time of the so-called  Directorate. 

ln autumn 1918, Ukrainian nationalists proclaimed the West Ukrainian People’s Republic  (WUPR) and, in January 1919, announced its unification with the Ukrainian People’s  Republic. In July 1919, Ukrainian forces were crushed by Polish troops, and the territory  of the former WUPR came under the Polish rule. 

In April 1920, Symon Petliura (portrayed as one of the „heroes“ in today’s Ukraine)  concluded secret conventions on behalf of the UPR Directorate, giving up — in exchange  for military support – Galicia and Western Volhynia lands to Poland. In May 1920, Petliurites entered Kiev in a convoy of Polish military units. But not for long. As early  as November 1920, following a truce between Poland and Soviet Russia, the remnants  of Petliura’s forces surrendered to those same Poles. 

The example of the UPR shows that different kinds of quasi-state formations that emerged  across the former Russian Empire at the time of the Civil War and turbulence were  inherently unstable. Nationalists sought to create their own independent states, while  leaders of the White movement advocated indivisible Russia. Many of the republics  established by the Bolsheviks‘ supporters did not see themselves outside Russia either.  Nevertheless, Bolshevik Party leaders sometimes basically drove them out of Soviet Russia  for various reasons. 

Thus, in early 1918, the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic was proclaimed and asked  Moscow to incorporate it into Soviet Russia. This was met with a refusal. During a meeting  with the republic’s leaders, Vladimir Lenin insisted that they act as part of Soviet Ukraine.  On 15 March 1918, the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party (Bolsheviks)  directly ordered that delegates be sent to the Ukrainian Congress of Soviets, including from  the Donetsk Basin, and that „one government for all of Ukraine“ be created  at the congress. The territories of the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic later formed  most of the regions of south-eastern Ukraine. 

Under the 1921 Treaty of Riga, concluded between the Russian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR  and Poland, the western lands of the former Russian Empire were ceded to Poland.  In the interwar period, the Polish government pursued an active resettlement policy,  seeking to change the ethnic composition of the Eastern Borderlands — the Polish name  for what is now Western Ukraine, Western Belarus and parts of Lithuania. The areas were  subjected to harsh Polonisation, local culture and traditions suppressed. Later, during  World War ll, radical groups of Ukrainian nationalists used this as a pretext for terror not  only against Polish, but also against Jewish and Russian populations. 

In 1922, when the USSR was created, with the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic  becoming one of its founders, a rather fierce debate among the Bolshevik leaders resulted  in the implementation of Lenin’s plan to form a union state as a federation of equal  republics. The right for the republics to freely secede from the Union was included  in the text of the Declaration on the Creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and,  subsequently, in the 1924 USSR Constitution. By doing so, the authors planted  in the foundation of our statehood the most dangerous time bomb, which exploded  the moment the safety mechanism provided by the leading role of the CPSU was gone,  the party itself collapsing from within. A „parade of sovereignties“ followed. On 8 December 1991, the so-called Belovezh Agreement on the Creation of the Commonwealth  of Independent States was signed, stating that „the USSR as a subject of international law  and a geopolitical reality no longer existed.“ By the way, Ukraine never signed or ratified  the ClS Charter adopted back in 1993. 

In the 1920’s-1930’s, the Bolsheviks actively promoted the ”localization policy“, which  took the form of Ukrainization in the Ukrainian SSR. Symbolically, as part of this policy  and with consent of the Soviet authorities, Mikhail Grushevskiy, former chairman of Central  Rada, one of the ideologists of Ukrainian nationalism, who at a certain period of time had  been supported by Austria-Hungary, was returned to the USSR and was elected member  of the Academy of Sciences. 

The localization policy undoubtedly played a major role in the development  and consolidation of the Ukrainian culture, language and identity. At the same time, under  the guise of combating the so-called Russian great-power chauvinism, Ukrainization was  often imposed on those who did not see themselves as Ukrainians. This Soviet national  policy secured at the state level the provision on three separate Slavic peoples: Russian,  Ukrainian and Belorussian, instead of the large Russian nation, a triune people comprising  Velikorussians, Malorussians and Belorussians. 

In 1939, the USSR regained the lands earlier seized by Poland. A major portion of these  became part of the Soviet Ukraine. In 1940, the Ukrainian SSR incorporated part  of Bessarabia, which had been occupied by Romania since 1918, as well as Northern  Bukovina. In 1948, Zmeyiniy Island (Snake Island) in the Black Sea became part of Ukraine.  In 1954, the Crimean Region of the RSFSR was given to the Ukrainian SSR, in gross  violation of legal norms that were in force at the time. 

I would like to dwell on the destiny of Carpathian Ruthenia, which became part  of Czechoslovakia following the breakup of Austria-Hungary. Rusins made up  a considerable share of local population. While this is hardly mentioned any longer, after  the liberation of Transcarpathia by Soviet troops the congress of the Orthodox population  of the region voted for the inclusion of Carpathian Ruthenia in the RSFSR or, as a separate  Carpathian republic, in the USSR proper. Yet the choice of people was ignored. In summer  1945, the historical act of the reunification of Carpathian Ukraine „with its ancient  motherland, Ukraine“ — as The Pravda newspaper put it – was announced. 

Therefore, modern Ukraine is entirely the product of the Soviet era. We know  and remember well that it was shaped — for a significant part — on the lands of historical  Russia. To make sure of that, it is enough to look at the boundaries of the lands reunited with the Russian state in the 17th century and the territory of the Ukrainian SSR when it left  the Soviet Union. 

The Bolsheviks treated the Russian people as inexhaustible material for their social  experiments. They dreamt of a world revolution that would wipe out national states. That is  why they were so generous in drawing borders and bestowing territorial gifts. lt is no longer  important what exactly the idea of the Bolshevik leaders who were chopping the country  into pieces was. We can disagree about minor details, background and logics behind  certain decisions. One fact is crystal clear: Russia was robbed, indeed. 

When working on this article, l relied on open-source documents that contain well-known  facts rather than on some secret records. The leaders of modern Ukraine and their external  „patrons“ prefer to overlook these facts. They do not miss a chance, however, both inside  the country and abroad, to condemn ”the crimes of the Soviet regime,“ listing among them  events with which neither the CPSU, nor the USSR, let alone modern Russia, have anything  to do. At the same time, the Bolsheviks‘ efforts to detach from Russia its historical  territories are not considered a crime. And we know why: if they brought about  the weakening of Russia, our ill-wishes are happy with that. 

Of course, inside the USSR, borders between republics were never seen as state borders;  they were nominal within a single country, which, while featuring all the attributes  of a federation, was highly centralized – this, again, was secured by the CPSU’s leading  role. But in 1991, all those territories, and, which is more important, people, found  themselves abroad overnight, taken away, this time indeed, from their historical  motherland. 

What can be said to this? Things change: countries and communities are no exception.  Of course, some part of a people in the process of its development, influenced by a number  of reasons and historical circumstances, can become aware of itself as a separate nation  at a certain moment. How should we treat that? There is only one answer: with respect! 

You want to establish a state of your own: you are welcome! But what are the terms? l will  recall the assessment given by one of the most prominent political figures of new Russia,  first mayor of Saint Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak. As a legal expert who believed that every  decision must be legitimate, in 1992, he shared the following opinion: the republics that  were founders of the Union, having denounced the 1922 Union Treaty, must return  to the boundaries they had had before joining the Soviet Union. All other territorial  acquisitions are subject to discussion, negotiations, given that the ground has been  revoked.       

In other words, when you leave, take what you brought with you. This logic is hard to refute.  I will just say that the Bolsheviks had embarked on reshaping boundaries even before  the Soviet Union, manipulating with territories to their liking, in disregard of people’s views. 

The Russian Federation recognized the new geopolitical realities: and not only recognized,  but, indeed, did a lot for Ukraine to establish itself as an independent country. Throughout  the difficult 1990’s and in the new millennium, we have provided considerable support  to Ukraine. Whatever „political arithmetic“ of its own Kiev may wish to apply, in 1991-  2013, Ukraine’s budget savings amounted to more than USD 82 billion, while today, it  holds on to the mere USD 1.5 billion of Russian payments for gas transit to Europe. If  economic ties between our countries had been retained, Ukraine would enjoy the benefit  of tens of billions of dollars. 

Ukraine and Russia have developed as a single economic system over decades  and centuries. The profound cooperation we had 30 years ago is an example  for the European Union to look up to. We are natural complementary economic partners.  Such a close relationship can strengthen competitive advantages, increasing the potential  of both countries. 

Ukraine used to possess great potential, which included powerful infrastructure, gas  transportation system, advanced shipbuilding, aviation, rocket and instrument engineering  industries, as well as world-class scientific, design and engineering schools. Taking over  this legacy and declaring independence, Ukrainian leaders promised that the Ukrainian  economy would be one of the leading ones and the standard of living would be among  the best in Europe. 

Today, high-tech industrial giants that were once the pride of Ukraine and the entire Union,  are sinking. Engineering output has dropped by 42 per cent over ten years. The scale  of deindustrialization and overall economic degradation is visible in Ukraine’s electricity  production, which has seen a nearly two-time decrease in 30 years. Finally, according  to IMF reports, in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic broke out, Ukraine’s GDP per  capita had been below USD 4 thousand. This is less than in the Republic of Albania,  the Republic of Moldova, or unrecognized Kosovo. Nowadays, Ukraine is Europe’s poorest  country. 

Who is to blame for this? ls it the people of Ukraine’s fault? Certainly not. It was  the Ukrainian authorities who waisted and frittered away the achievements of many  generations. We know how hardworking and talented the people of Ukraine are. They can  achieve success and outstanding results with perseverance and determination. And these qualities, as well as their openness, innate optimism and hospitality have not gone.  The feelings of millions of people who treat Russia not just well but with great affection, just  as we feel about Ukraine, remain the same. 

Until 2014, hundreds of agreements and joint projects were aimed at developing our  economies, business and cultural ties, strengthening security, and solving common social  and environmental problems. They brought tangible benefits to people — both in Russia  and Ukraine. This is what we believed to be most important. And that is why we had  a fruitful interaction with all, l emphasize, with all the leaders of Ukraine. 

Even after the events in Kiev of 2014, l charged the Russian government to elaborate  options for preserving and maintaining our economic ties within relevant ministries  and agencies. However, there was and is still no mutual will to do the same. Nevertheless,  Russia is still one of Ukraine’s top three trading partners, and hundreds of thousands  of Ukrainians are coming to us to work, and they find a welcome reception and support. So  that what the „aggressor state“ is. 

When the USSR collapsed, many people in Russia and Ukraine sincerely believed  and assumed that our close cultural, spiritual and economic ties would certainly last,  as would the commonality of our people, who had always had a sense of unity at their core.  However, events — at first gradually, and then more rapidly — started to move in a different  direction. 

In essence, Ukraine’s ruling circles decided to justify their country’s independence through  the denial of its past, however, except for border issues. They began to mythologize  and rewrite history, edit out everything that united us, and refer to the period when Ukraine  was part of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union as an occupation. The common tragedy of collectivization and famine of the early 1930s was portrayed as the genocide of the Ukrainian people. 

Radicals and neo-Nazis were open and more and more insolent about their ambitions. They  were indulged by both the official authorities and local oligarchs, who robbed the people  of Ukraine and kept their stolen money in Western banks, ready to sell their motherland  for the sake of preserving their capital. To this should be added the persistent weakness  of state institutions and the position of a willing hostage to someone else’s geopolitical will. 

I recall that long ago, well before 2014, the U.S. and EU countries systematically  and consistently pushed Ukraine to curtail and limit economic cooperation with Russia. We,  as the largest trade and economic partner of Ukraine, suggested discussing the emerging problems in the Ukraine-Russia-EU format. But every time we were told that Russia had  nothing to do with it and that the issue concerned only the EU and Ukraine. De facto  Western countries rejected Russia’s repeated calls for dialogue. 

Step by step, Ukraine was dragged into a dangerous geopolitical game aimed at turning  Ukraine into a barrier between Europe and Russia, a springboard against Russia. inevitably, there came a time when the concept of „Ukraine is not Russia“ was no longer an option.  There was a need for the  ”anti-Russia“ concept which we will never accept. 

The owners of this project took as a basis the old groundwork of the Polish-Austrian  ideologists to create an ”anti-Moscow Russia“. And there is no need to deceive anyone that  this is being done in the interests of the people of Ukraine. The Polish-Lithuanian  Commonwealth never needed Ukrainian culture, much less Cossack autonomy. In Austria-Hungary, historical Russian lands were mercilessly exploited and remained the poorest.  The Nazis, abetted by collaborators from the OUN-UPA, did not need Ukraine, but a living  space and slaves for Aryan overlords. 

Nor were the interests of the Ukrainian people thought of in February 2014. The legitimate  public discontent, caused by acute socio-economic problems, mistakes, and inconsistent  actions of the authorities of the time, was simply cynically exploited. Western countries  directly interfered in Ukraine’s internal affairs and supported the coup. Radical nationalist  groups served as its battering ram. Their slogans, ideology, and blatant aggressive  Russophobia have to a large extent become defining elements of state policy in Ukraine. 

All the things that united us and bring us together so far came under attack. First  and foremost, the Russian language. Let me remind you that the new „Maidan“ authorities  first tried to repeal the law on state language policy. Then there was the law  on the „purification of power“, the law on education that virtually cut the Russian language  out of the educational process. 

Lastly, as early as May of this year, the current president introduced a bill on „indigenous  peoples“ to the Rada. Only those who constitute an ethnic minority and do not have their  own state entity outside Ukraine are recognized as indigenous. The law has been passed.  New seeds of discord have been sown. And this is happening in a country, as I have already  noted, that is very complex in terms of its territorial, national and linguistic composition,  and its history of formation. 

There may be an argument: if you are talking about a single large nation, a triune nation,  then what difference does it make who people consider themselves to be — Russians, Ukrainians, or Belarusians. I completely agree with this. Especially since the determination  of nationality, particularly in mixed families, is the right of every individual, free to make his  or her own choice. 

But the fact is that the situation in Ukraine today is completely different because it involves  a forced change of identity. And the most despicable thing is that the Russians in Ukraine  are being forced not only to deny their roots, generations of their ancestors but also  to believe that Russia is their enemy. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the path  of forced assimilation, the formation of an ethnically pure Ukrainian state, aggressive  towards Russia, is comparable in its consequences to the use of weapons of mass  destruction against us. As a result of such a harsh and artificial division of Russians  and Ukrainians, the Russian people in all may decrease by hundreds of thousands or even  millions. 

Our spiritual unity has also been attacked. As in the days of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania,  a new ecclesiastical has been initiated. The secular authorities, making no secret of their  political aims, have blatantly interfered in church life and brought things to a split,  to the seizure of churches, the beating of priests and monks. Even extensive autonomy  of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church while maintaining spiritual unity with the Moscow  Patriarchate strongly displeases them. They have to destroy this prominent and centuries-old symbol of our kinship at all costs. 

I think it is also natural that the representatives of Ukraine over and over again vote against  the UN General Assembly resolution condemning the glorification of Nazism. Marches  and torchlit processions in honor of remaining war criminals from the SS units take place  under the protection of the official authorities. Mazepa, who betrayed everyone, Petliura,  who paid for Polish patronage with Ukrainian lands, and Bandera, who collaborated with  the Nazis, are ranked as national heroes. Everything is being done to erase from  the memory of young generations the names of genuine patriots and victors, who have  always been the pride of Ukraine. 

For the Ukrainians who fought in the Red Army, in partisan units, the Great Patriotic War  was indeed a patriotic war because they were defending their home, their great common  Motherland. Over two thousand soldiers became Heroes of the Soviet Union. Among them  are legendary pilot lvan Kozhedub, fearless sniper, defender of Odessa and Sevastopol  Lyudmila Pavlichenko, valiant guerrilla commander Sidor Kovpak. This indomitable  generation fought, those people gave their lives for our future, for us. To forget their feat is  to betray our grandfathers, mothers and fathers.       

The anti-Russia project has been rejected by millions of Ukrainians. The people of Crimea  and residents of Sevastopol made their historic choice. And people in the southeast  peacefully tried to defend their stance. Yet, all of them, including children, were labeled  as separatists and terrorists. They were threatened with ethnic cleansing and the use  of military force. And the residents of Donetsk and Lugansk took up arms to defend their  home, their language and their lives. Were they left any other choice after the riots that  swept through the cities of Ukraine, after the horror and tragedy of 2 May 2014 in Odessa  where Ukrainian neo-Nazis burned people alive making a new Khatyn out of it? The same  massacre was ready to be carried out by the followers of Bandera in Crimea, Sevastopol,  Donetsk and Lugansk. Even now they do not abandon such plans. They are biding their  time. But their time will not come. 

The coup d’état and the subsequent actions of the Kiev authorities inevitably provoked  confrontation and civil war. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights estimates that  the total number of victims in the conflict in Donbas has exceeded 13,000. Among them  are the elderly and children. These are terrible, irreparable losses. 

Russia has done everything to stop fratricide. The Minsk agreements aimed at a peaceful  settlement of the conflict in Donbas have been concluded. I am convinced that they still  have no alternative. In any case, no one has withdrawn their signatures from the Minsk  Package of Measures or from the relevant statements by the leaders of the Normandy  format countries. No one has initiated a review of the United Nations Security Council  resolution of 17 February 2015. 

During official negotiations, especially after being reined in by Western partners, Ukraine’s  representatives regularly declare their „full adherence“ to the Minsk agreements, but are  in fact guided by a position of „unacceptability“. They do not intend to seriously discuss  either the special status of Donbas or safeguards for the people living there. They prefer  to exploit the image of the „victim of external aggression“ and peddle Russophobia. They  arrange bloody provocations in Donbas. In short, they attract the attention of external  patrons and masters by all means. 

Apparently, and l am becoming more and more convinced of this: Kiev simply does not  need Donbas. Why? Because, firstly, the inhabitants of these regions will never accept  the order that they have tried and are trying to impose by force, blockade and threats.  And secondly, the outcome of both Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 which give a real chance  to peacefully restore the territorial integrity of Ukraine by coming to an agreement directly  with the DPR and LPR with Russia, Germany and France as mediators, contradicts  the entire logic of the anti-Russia project. And it can only be sustained by the constant cultivation of the image of an internal and external enemy. And I would add — under  the protection and control of the Western powers. 

This is what is actually happening. First of all, we are facing the creation of a climate of fear  in Ukrainian society, aggressive rhetoric, indulging neo-Nazis and militarising the country.  Along with that we are witnessing not just complete dependence but direct external control,  including the supervision of the Ukrainian authorities, security services and armed forces  by foreign advisers, military „development“ of the territory of Ukraine and deployment  of NATO infrastructure. It is no coincidence that the aforementioned flagrant law  on „indigenous peoples“ was adopted under the cover of large-scale NATO exercises  in Ukraine. 

This is also a disguise for the takeover of the rest of the Ukrainian economy  and the exploitation of its natural resources. The sale of agricultural land is not far off,  and it is obvious who will buy it up. From time to time, Ukraine is indeed given financial  resources and loans, but under their own conditions and pursuing their own interests, with  preferences and benefits for Western companies. By the way, who will pay these debts  back? Apparently, it is assumed that this will have to be done not only by today’s generation  of Ukrainians but also by their children, grandchildren and probably great-grandchildren. 

The Western authors of the anti-Russia project set up the Ukrainian political system in such  a way that presidents, members of parliament and ministers would change but the attitude  of separation from and enmity with Russia would remain. Reaching peace was the main election slogan of the incumbent president. He came to power with this. The promises  turned out to be lies. Nothing has changed. And in some ways the situation in Ukraine  and around Donbas has even degenerated. 

In the anti-Russia project, there is no place either for a sovereign Ukraine or for the political  forces that are trying to defend its real independence. Those who talk about reconciliation  in Ukrainian society, about dialogue, about finding a way out of the current impasse are  labelled as „pro-Russian“ agents. 

Again, for many people in Ukraine, the anti-Russia project is simply unacceptable.  And there are millions of such people. But they are not allowed to raise their heads. They  have had their legal opportunity to defend their point of view in fact taken away from them.  They are intimidated, driven underground. Not only are they persecuted for their  convictions, for the spoken word, for the open expression of their position, but they are also  killed. Murderers, as a rule, go unpunished.       

Today, the ”right“ patriot of Ukraine is only the one who hates Russia. Moreover, the entire  Ukrainian statehood, as we understand it, is proposed to be further built exclusively on this  idea. Hate and anger, as world history has repeatedly proved this, are a very shaky  foundation for sovereignty, fraught with many serious risks and dire consequences. 

All the subterfuges associated with the anti-Russia project are clear to us. And we will never  allow our historical territories and people close to us living there to be used against Russia.  And to those who will undertake such an attempt, I would like to say that this way they will  destroy their own country. 

The incumbent authorities in Ukraine like to refer to Western experience, seeing it  as a model to follow. Just have a look at how Austria and Germany, the USA and Canada live next to each other. Close in ethnic composition, culture, in fact sharing one language, they  remain sovereign states with their own interests, with their own foreign policy. But this does  not prevent them from the closest integration or allied relations. They have very conditional,  transparent borders. And when crossing them the citizens feel at home. They create  families, study, work, do business. Incidentally, so do millions of those born in Ukraine who  now live in Russia. We see them as our own close people. 

Russia is open to dialogue with Ukraine and ready to discuss the most complex issues. But  it is important for us to understand that our partner is defending its national interests but  not serving someone else’s, and is not a tool in someone else’s hands to fight against us. 

We respect the Ukrainian language and traditions. We respect Ukrainians‘ desire to see  their country free, safe and prosperous. 

l am confident that true sovereignty of Ukraine is possible only in partnership with Russia.  Our spiritual, human and civilizational ties formed for centuries and have their origins  in the same sources, they have been hardened by common trials, achievements  and victories. Our kinship has been transmitted from generation to generation. It is  in the hearts and the memory of people living in modern Russia and Ukraine, in the blood  ties that unite millions of our families. Together we have always been and will be many  times stronger and more successful. For we are one people. 

Today, these words may be perceived by some people with hostility. They can be interpreted  in many possible ways. Yet, many people will hear me. And I will say one thing – Russia has  never been and will never be „anti-Ukraine“. And what Ukraine will be — it is up to its  citizens to decide.       

Publication status

Published in sections: News, Transcripts

Publication date: July 12, 2021, 17:00

Direct link: en.kremlin.ru/d/66181      

Mit solidarischen Grüßen vom Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin, Dr. Dieter Weigert,

1. April 2022 (Vorsicht, kein April-Scherz, dazu sind die Zeiten zu ernst)

Asow-Regiment: Extreme Verteidiger

Von Aleppo nach Donezk -der neue Aufstand des „Globalen Südens“

Nicolo Machiavelli sollte eigentlich allen Politikern, Journalisten und Politologen aus der Geschichte bekannt sein: die Lüge, die Manipulation gehört zum Arsenal der Machthaber, der Fürsten.

Nicolo Machiavlli

Aber nicht immer lässt sich diese Grundregel durchhalten. So fällt es den Verantwortlichen für die Medien schwer, den Massen vor den Fernsehern, an den Computern und über den Zeitungsseiten zu erklären, warum sich seit etwa einem Jahrzehnt im globalen Maßstab eine qualitative Machtverschiebung vollzieht, deren Anzeichen für diejenigen, die sich ernsthaft mit Weltpolitik beschäftigen, in dieser Woche in zwei Ereignissen deutlich werden: der Besuch des syrischen Präsidenten Bashar al-Assad in den Vereinigten Arabischen Emiraten und der bevorstehdende Fall der bedeutenden ukrainischen Hafenstadt Mariupol in die Hände der russischen Armee – damit das Ende der Terrorherrshaft der Neo-Nazi-Gruppierung ASOW.

Auf den ersten Blick zwei sehr entfernte Ereignisse – doch sie symbolisieren zusammen mit dem Abstimmungsergebnis der UN-Vollversammlung vom 2. März über die Ukraine-Resolution ES-11/1. eine Tendenz, deren Verständnis sich die Politiker des Nordens/Westens mit der Sturheit eines Ochsen verweigern: die Repräsentanten von drei Vierteln der Weltbevölkerung sind nicht mehr bereit, sich dem Diktat des restlichen Viertels zu beugen. Dieser Prozess vollzieht sich quälend langsam, in der UN-Vollversammlung nutzen sie vorerst nur das Instrument der Stimmenthaltung und der Nichtteilnahme an der von den USA, Deutschland, Großbritannien und ihren Vasallen geforderten Zustimmung zur resolution. Sie feiern ihre Mehrheit der Stimmen, verschweigen uns aber das politische und ökonomische Gewicht der Nicht-JA-Sager u.a. China, Indien, Pakistan, Südafrika, Vietnam, Bangladesch, Angola, Namibia, Venezuela, Bolivien,Marokko, Algerien, Senegal, Sudan, Äthiopien usw.

À Propos – „Alternative Weltordnung“ nennt der britische „Economist“ vom 19.3.2022 das neue „Schreckgespenst“ für den NORD/WESTEN

Wie der „globale Süden“ in der UNO-Vollversammlung am 2. März 2022 über die Ukraine-Resolution abstimmte (Quelle „Der Spiegel“) Die „Blauen“ und die „Grauen“ sind die „Neuen“ die Nicht-JA-Sager – das hatte Präsident Trump schon erkannt!

Gegen die Resolution ES-11/1 „Aggression against Ukraine“ haben am 2. März 2022 fünf Mitgliedsstaaten der UNO gestimmt: Belasus, Eritrea, Nordkorea, Russland uns Syrien. 35 Staaten haben sich der Stimme enthalten, 12 Staaten haben nicht an der Abstimmung teilgenommen, was politisch einer Stimmenthaltung nahekommt. Das bedeutet, dass sich insgesamt 52 Staaten dem Druck der USA, der Bundesrepublik Deutschland und ihrer Verbündeten nicht gebeugt haben – ein Verhältnis also von 141 Ja-Stimmen zu 52 „abweichenden“ Stimmen.

Eigentlich hätten sie es vor einem Jahrzehnt spüren müssen, dass ihr Regime-change in Kiew nicht von Dauer sein wird und dass der blutige Umsturzversuch in Syrien vor dem Hintergrund der russischen militärischen Unterstützung für das legitime Regime in Damaskus scheitern muss. Aber sie lernen nicht aus der Geschichte – nicht aus dem Iran, nicht aus Cuba, aus Vietnam, Afghanistan.

Bleibt eine Frage: Ist Verschleierung der Wahrheit gleichzusetzen mit einer Lüge? Lügt ein Staatsmann, wenn er die Wahrheit nicht ausspricht? Frau Baerbock ist enttäuscht von Präsident Putin und Außenminister Lawrow – man habe sie belogen!

Fragen wir andersherum:

Muss die deutsche Außenministerin, Annalena Baerbock, jedes Detail der durch ihre Partei seit Jahren organisierten Pläne und Aktionen eines Regime-Changes in Belarus fragenden Journalisten freigiebig preisgeben? Ist ihr Verschweigen dieser Fakten eine Lüge oder eine staatstragende Weisheit à la Machiavelli? Würden ihre Anhängerinnen und Bewunderer sie wählen, wenn sie eine Schwätzerin, eine Plaudertasche wäre?

Dass Frau Baerbock trotz ihrer zusammengeschusterten Autobiographie wenig Verständnis aufbringt für Völkerrecht und internationale Beziehungen, ist inzwischen allen bewußt, auch den Leuten in ihrer Partei, die sich nicht darum scheren. Frischen wir aber ihre nicht vorhandenen Geschichtsphilosophischen Kenntnisse etwas auf !!! Es geht um Manipulation – wenn ein französischer König seine innenpolitischen Feinde zur Hochzeit seiner Schwester lädt und sie zu Tausenden in einer Nacht umbringen lässt – ist er, Charles IX., im Jahre 1572 Retter des Vaterlandes!

Charles IX.

Wenn ein russischer Zar zur gleichen Zeit seine internen Widersacher zu Hunderten töten lässt, wird aus Iwan IV., aus Iwan Grosny (der Furchteinflößende, der Strenge) Iwan der Schreckliche – er ist ja Russe, kein edler Franzose! Soviel zur Manipulation mit Begriffen.

Iwan IV. „Grosny“

So viel zum Geschichtsbild unserer Trampolin-Springerin ! Sie hat intuitiv Machiavelli geschluckt: Es gibt einen historischen Bogen, der die Namen Machiavelli (1469- 1527), Iwan Grosny (1530 – 1584) Karl IX. von Frankreich (1550 – 1574) umspannt: im Zenit steht die Bartholomäus-Nacht 1572.

Das Massaker in der Bartholomäus-Nacht

Das Drama von Mariupol:

Was „unsere“ Politiker, auch Grüne, Sozialdemokraten und Linke (auch Gysi, Bartsch und Ramelow), ihren gläubigen Anhängern und Wählern nicht erklären können bei ihren Solidaritätbekundungen für Klitschko u. Co. – der Terror der ukrainischen Neo-Nazis seit mehr als 8 Jahren:

Ihr Terror

unverhüllte Nazi-Propaganda in der Ukraine, mit unseren Steuergeldern bezahlt
Ihre Blutspur

Das Wüten der ASOW-Faschisten wurde über die Grenzen der Ukraine bekannt. Während die deutschen, französischen, britischen Medien beharrlich den Deckel darüber hielten, ließ sich ein Abgeordneter des US-Repräsentantenhauses, John Conyers, Jr. aus dem Bundesstaat Michigan (Demokratische Partei), nicht davon abhalten, das Treiben dieser neo-Nazi-Söldner im amerikanischen Parlament öffentlich zu machen und eine Resolution einzubringen, die die Unterstützung des Trainings dieser Gruppe durch die USA verbot. Einstimmig wurde seine parlamentarische Initiative durch das Repräsentantenhaus unterstützt. (Nachzulesen unter https://web.archive.org/web/20150612175317/http://conyers.house.gov/index.cfm/press-releases?ID=0DC46F90-801E-433D-B565-5E8A67C81A83)

Aus der Homepage des Abgeordneten Conyers

Der Globale Süden ist dabei, unter Schmerzen die blutigen Lektionen zu lernen. Die Toten von Mariupol sollten mahnen – muss es immer Blut ein, das den Lernprozess der Politiker und Journalisten befördert?

In Solidarität Dr. Dieter Weigert, Berlin Prenzlauer Berg, 20. März 2022

Oh – ODESSA ! oder : manchmal widersetzt sich der „Spiegel“ der verordneten anti-russischen Propaganda

Russische Revolution 1905

Manche unserer mainstream-Schreiberlinge /TV-Schwätzer reden ein neues Stalin-Russland herbei – ohne sich den Fakten zu stellen. Aber – gerade mit der Stadt Odessa verknüpfte historische Ereignisse könnten zum Nachdenken anregen, wenn ihnen der gebührende Raum in der aktuellen Debatte um den Krieg in der Ukraine zugebilligt würde.

Odessa – die russische Perle am Schwarzen Meer.

Vor über 200 Jahren ließ Zarin Katharina neben der von der Türken eroberten Festung Yeni Dünya die Hafenstadt Odessa anlegen, die sich in kurzer Zeit zur bedeutendsten Metropole Russlands am Schwarzen Meer entwickelte. Hervorragende Militärs, Architekten, Reeder, Wirtschaftsfachleute aus ganz Europa machten sich um diese „Perle am Schwarzen Meer“ verdient, so dass der Name der Stadt in Europa und Amerika zum Symbol für die geistige, kulturelle und mediterrane Ausstrahlung des russischen Südens wurde. Vor diesem Hintergrund ist auch verständlich, dass die Bevölkerung Odessas überwiegend russisch spricht und die russischen kulturellen Taditionen einen höheren Stellenwert im Vergleich zu Städten wie Lwiv oder Poltawa aufweisen.

So ist auch der Welterfolg des Eisenstein-Films über die mit der Stadt Odessa verbundene Meuterei auf dem Panzerkreuzer Potemkin des Jahres 1905 zu erklären,

visuell in der Erinnerung vor allem die vom Hafen nach oben führende ewig lange Treppe. Diese demokratischen und revolutionären Traditionen finden in der gegenwärtigen nationalistischen Bewegung der Maidan-Gruppen keine Resonanz.

Hier das Foto des Gewerkschaftshauses von Odessa:

Die Blumen am Eingang führen uns zur zweiten, sehr tragischen historischen Erinnerung an die Stadt Odessa, führen uns in die jüngste Geschichte. Sie erinnern an das Massaker, das nationalistische Kräfte im Jahr 2014 in Odessa anrichteten und dem 48 Menschen zum Opfer fielen.

Den Hintergrund wie auch die Vertuschungsvorgänge bis hin in die oberen Ränge der Regierung der Ukraine und ihrer Verbündeten, auch der Bundesrepublik, beleuchtet ein Beitrag des „Spiegel“ (Verfasser Bejamin Bidder) vom 04. November 2015, dessen Text ich hier wiedergebe, bevor die „freiheitlich-demokratische“ Informationssperre der deutschen Regierung ihn aus dem Netz nimmt:

Gewalt in Odessa: Tödlicher Brand im Gewerkschaftshaus

12 Bilder Foto: ANATOLII STEPANOV/ AFP

Die Schande von Odessa

Nach Straßenschlachten ging im Mai 2014 in Odessa das Gewerkschaftshaus in Flammen auf, 48 Menschen starben. Nun stellt der Europarat der Ukraine ein vernichtendes Urteil aus.

Von Benjamin Bidder

04.11.2015, 13.23 Uhr

Odessa ist eine Millionenstadt am Schwarzen Meer, Bürger aus mehr als 100 Völkern leben hier. Hafen und Handel haben die Stadt groß gemacht, weltoffen und lässig. Seit dem 2. Mai 2014 aber steht der Name Odessa nicht mehr für Toleranz, sondern auch für enthemmte Gewalt – und für Behörden, die nichts zum Schutz der Opfer taten.

Zwei Gruppen standen sich an jenem Tag gegenüber. Knapp 2000 Ukrainer marschierten für die im Februar erfolgreiche Maidan-Revolution und die „Einheit des Landes“. Darunter waren viele Hooligansund Nationalisten aus Kiew und Charkiw. Auf der anderen Seite standen jene, die sich „Anti-Maidan“ nennen: Ihre Zeichen waren russische Fahnen und das orange-schwarze Georgsband. Der „Anti-Maidan“ griff die Hooligans an, die Straßenschlacht begann.

Beide Seiten schossen aufeinander, sechs Menschen starben. Am Abend griffen Hooligans und Nationalisten das Hauptquartier des „Anti-Maidan“ an, eine Zeltstadt am Haus der Gewerkschaften. Prorussische Aktivisten verbarrikadierten sich im Innern, Molotowcocktails flogen. Das Gebäude fing Feuer. Am Ende dieses Tages waren 48 Menschen tot.

Aufarbeitung kommt nicht voran

Die Tragödie liegt anderthalb Jahre zurück. Die Aufarbeitung aber kommt kaum voran. Nun stellt der Europarat der Ukraine ein vernichtendes Urteil aus. Es sei „kein substanzieller Fortschritt bei den Untersuchungen gemacht worden“, heißt es in einem am Mittwoch in Kiew vorgestellten Bericht. Den Behörden mangele es an der „notwendigen Gründlichkeit und Sorgfalt“. Beweise gingen verloren, weil die Straßenreinigung sie am nächsten Tag einfach wegräumte. Die Ruine des Gewerkschaftshauses wurde erst nach Tagen abgesperrt.

Bis heute gibt es zwar mehrere Verfahren wegen der Straßenschlachten, aber nicht eine Anklage wegen des Angriffs auf das Gewerkschaftshaus. Der einzige Verdächtige wurde laufen gelassen, aus Mangel an Beweisen.

Dabei war die Bestialität gut dokumentiert. Einige proukrainische Demonstranten bemühten sich zwar, Menschen aus dem brennenden Haus zu bergen. Zahlreiche Handyvideos zeigen aber auch Angreifer, die weiter Jagd machten. Auf einer Aufnahme ist ein Mann zu sehen, der über eine Feuerleiter floh. Als er den Boden erreichte, setzten ihm Schläger zu. Er kletterte zurück ins brennende Haus. Ein anderes Video zeigt Menschen, die aus Fenstern sprangen. Viele bleiben verletzt auf dem Asphalt liegen. Dort waren sie einem Mann ausgeliefert, der mit einem Baseballschläger auf sie eindrosch.

Wirkung über die Stadtgrenzen hinaus

Die Rüge des Europarats ist mehr als eine Spitzfindigkeit des Westens. Die Geschehnisse von Odessa haben Wirkung über die Stadtgrenzen hinaus entwickelt. Die Separatisten in Donezk und Luhansk rechtfertigen ihren bewaffneten Kampf gegen Kiew als Notwehr gegen mordende Nationalistenbanden. Russische Medien sehen das genauso: Odessa sei der Beweis, dass in der Ukraine gezielt Jagd gemacht werde auf Russland-Freunde.

Die Ukraine hat wenig getan, um solche Vorwürfe zu entkräften. Der damalige Gouverneur von Odessa rechtfertigte die Brandstiftung sogar: Um „bewaffnete Terroristen zu neutralisieren“, sei das Vorgehen „legal“ gewesen. Heute sind nur noch zwei Ermittler mit dem Fall befasst.

Der Bericht führt alle bis heute bekannten Fakten auf. Verschwörungstheorien stützt er nicht. Der Europarat gibt auch die Nachforschungen einer Bürgerinitiative aus Odessa wieder. Die Aktivisten nennen sich „Gruppe 2. Mai“. Von ihnen stammt die transparenteste Untersuchung der Tragödie. Hinweise auf ein gezieltes Komplott haben sie nicht gefunden. „Im Gegenteil“, sagt Sergij Dibrow, Reporter und ein Sprecher der Gruppe. „Alles entwickelte sich chaotisch, spontan, unvorhersehbar.“ Die eigentliche Ursache sei die „Degeneration aller staatlichen Stellen, hervorgerufen durch die allgegenwärtige Korruption“.

Chronik des Versagens

Der 90-Seiten-Bericht des Europarats ist auch eine Chronik des Behördenversagens. So wusste die Polizei etwa seit Tagen von Plänen, das „Anti-Maidan“-Lager am Gewerkschaftshaus zu zerstören. Sie brachte dort aber nur eine Hundertschaft in Stellung, ebenso im Stadtzentrum. Die Beamten schauten tatenlos zu, als ein prorussischer Kämpfer mit einem Gewehr in die Menge schoss.

Das Kommando hatte an dem Tag der Vizepolizeichef Dmitrij Futschedschi. Seine Rolle bleibt rätselhaft. Am 4. Mai ließ er einen prorussischen Mob das Tor zu seiner Polizeizentrale mit einem Lastwagen aufbrechen und Dutzende Gefangene befreien. Eine Einheit der Sonderpolizei rückte zwar an, griff aber nicht ein. Verhören konnten die Ermittler den Kommandeur allerdings nicht mehr: Als sie Futschedschi Mitte Mai endlich auf die Fahndungsliste setzten, hatte er sich bereits ins Ausland abgesetzt.

Hilfe kam auch nicht von der Feuerwehr. Die nächste Wache liegt zwar keine 500 Meter vom Gewerkschaftshaus entfernt. Der damalige Chef der Feuerwehr gab zu Protokoll, er habe seinen Männern das Ausrücken ausdrücklich verboten. Die Lage sei zu gefährlich gewesen. Gut möglich, dass ein Rettungsprofi ganz anders entschieden hätte: Von dem Feuerwehr-Chef heißt es in Odessa, er habe den Posten nur der Tatsache zu verdanken gehabt, dass sein Vater einmal Bürgermeister war.

Die Internetzeitung „Dumskaja“ machte später einen Mitschnitt aus der Notrufzentrale publik. Dort ist zu hören, wie die Telefon-Dame Anrufern kühl beschied, von dem Feuer gehe gar keine Gefahr aus. Dann hängt sie auf. Später kam ein Anruf aus dem Gewerkschaftshaus selbst. „Wir sind jetzt unterwegs“, beruhigte die Telefonisten. Die Antwort war ein Schluchzen: „Wir werden jetzt verbrennen.“

Zusammengefasst: Der Europarat kritisiert die Ermittlungen wegen der blutigen Krawalle am 2. Mai 2014 im ukrainischen Odessa. Damals hatten sich ukrainische Hooligans und prorussische Aktivisten Straßenschlachten geliefert, später brannte das Gewerkschaftshaus, 48 Menschen starben. Bis heute gibt es keine Anklage wegen des Brands.“

(Ende des Beitrags des „Spiegel“)

Das orange-schwarze Band des russischen St. Georgs-Ordens

Wenn in den nächsten Tagen auch Odessa und das Umland zum Schlachtfeld werden, sollten sich die Kollegen Journalisten mit einer gehörigen Portion historischen Wissens (1905 – 2014) ausstatten, bevor sie uns Mythen, Legenden und Märchen aus der Küche der Klitschko-Brüder und ihres im grünen Präsidentensessel sich darstellenden Komödianten servieren. Es gibt doch einige Leute in Deutschland, die hinter die Fassade sehen können.

Noch ein Blick auf den Hafen von Odessa, bevor er für die Nationalisten nicht mehr zugänglich sein wird:

Mit solidarischen Grüßen

Dr. Dieter Weigert Berlin – Prenzlauer Berg 17. März 2022

„Segel im Sturm“ – Admiral Uschakow und Präsident Putin

Der Filmheld meiner Kindheit und Jugend – im“Russenfilm“ des Ostens – Admiral Uschakow – Russe,

baute an der ukrainisch-russischen Küste für Zarin Katharina die Segelschiffe der ruhmreichen Schwarzmeerflotte, mit denen er die Krim eroberte und später im Krieg gegen Bonaparte Mittelmeer-Festungen stürmte. Muss man diesen Hintegrund kennen, um den gegenwärtigen Krieg um die Ukraine zu verstehen?

Quelle:  http://www.en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/66181

Article by Vladimir Putin

”0n the Historical Unity  of Russians and Ukrainians“ 

July 12, 2021 17:00 

During the recent Direct Line, when I was asked about Russian-Ukrainian relations, I said  that Russians and Ukrainians were one people — a single whole. These words were not  driven by some short-term considerations or prompted by the current political context. It is  what l have said on numerous occasions and what I firmly believe. I therefore feel it  necessary to explain my position in detail and share my assessments of today’s situation. 

First of all, I would like to emphasize that the wall that has emerged in recent years  between Russia and Ukraine, between the parts of what is essentially the same historical  and spiritual space, to my mind is our great common misfortune and tragedy. These are,  first and foremost, the consequences of our own mistakes made at different periods  of time. But these are also the result of deliberate efforts by those forces that have always  sought to undermine our unity. The formula they apply has been known from time  immemorial — divide and rule. There is nothing new here. Hence the attempts to play  on the ”national question“ and sow discord among people, the overarching goal being  to divide and then to pit the parts of a single people against one another. 

To have a better understanding of the present and look into the future, we need to turn  to history. Certainly, it is impossible to cover in this article all the developments that have  taken place over more than a thousand years. But l will focus on the key, pivotal moments  that are important for us to remember, both in Russia and Ukraine. 

Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians are all descendants of Ancient Rus, which was  the largest state in Europe. Slavic and other tribes across the vast territory – from Ladoga,  Novgorod, and Pskov to Kiev and Chernigov — were bound together by one language (which  we now refer to as Old Russian), economic ties, the rule of the princes of the Rurik dynasty,  and — after the baptism of Rus — the Orthodox faith. The spiritual choice made by St.  Vladimir, who was both Prince of Novgorod and Grand Prince of Kiev, still largely determines  our affinity today.      

The throne of Kiev held a dominant position in Ancient Rus. This had been the custom  since the late 9th century. The Tale of Bygone Years captured for posterity the words of Oleg  the Prophet about Kiev, „Let it be the mother of all Russian cities.“ 

Later, like other European states of that time, Ancient Rus faced a decline of central rule  and fragmentation. At the same time, both the nobility and the common people perceived  Rus as a common territory, as their homeland. 

The fragmentation intensified after Batu Khan’s devastating invasion, which ravaged many  cities, including Kiev. The northeastern part of Rus fell under the control of the Golden  Horde but retained limited sovereignty. The southern and western Russian lands largely  became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which — most significantly — was referred  to in historical records as the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Russia. 

Members of the princely and ”boyar“ clans would change service from one prince  to another, feuding with each other but also making friendships and alliances. Voivode  Bobrok of Volyn and the sons of Grand Duke of Lithuania Algirdas — Andrey of Polotsk  and Dmitry of Bryansk — fought next to Grand Duke Dmitry lvanovich of Moscow  on the Kulikovo field. At the same time, Grand Duke of Lithuania Jogaila — son  of the Princess of Tver — led his troops to join with Mamai. These are all pages of our  shared history, reflecting its complex and multi-dimensional nature. 

Most importantly, people both in the western and eastern Russian lands spoke the same  language. Their faith was Orthodox. Up to the middle of the 15th century, the unified church  government remained in place. 

At a new stage of historical development, both Lithuanian Rus and Moscow Rus could have  become the points of attraction and consolidation of the territories of Ancient Rus. lt so  happened that Moscow became the center of reunification, continuing the tradition  of ancient Russian statehood. Moscow princes — the descendants of Prince Alexander  Nevsky — cast off the foreign yoke and began gathering the Russian lands. 

In the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, other processes were unfolding. ln the 14th century,  Lithuania’s ruling elite converted to Catholicism. In the 16th century, it signed the Union  of Lublin with the Kingdom of Poland to form the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth.  The Polish Catholic nobility received considerable land holdings and privileges  in the territory of Rus. In accordance with the 1596 Union of Brest, part of the western  Russian Orthodox clergy submitted to the authority of the Pope. The process of Polonization  and Latinization began, ousting Orthodoxy.       

As a consequence, in the 16—17th centuries, the liberation movement of the Orthodox  population was gaining strength in the Dnieper region. The events during the times  of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky became a turning point. His supporters struggled  for autonomy from the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth. 

ln its 1649 appeal to the king of the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Zaporizhian  Host demanded that the rights of the Russian Orthodox population be respected, that  the voivode of Kiev be Russian and of Greek faith, and that the persecution of the churches  of God be stopped. But the Cossacks were not heard. 

Bohdan Khmelnytsky then made appeals to Moscow, which were considered by the Zemsky  Sobor. On 1 October 1653, members of the supreme representative body of the Russian  state decided to support their brothers in faith and take them under patronage. ln January  1654, the Pereyaslav Council confirmed that decision. Subsequently, the ambassadors  of Bohdan Khmelnytsky and Moscow visited dozens of cities, including Kiev, whose  populations swore allegiance to the Russian tsar. Incidentally, nothing of the kind happened  at the conclusion of the Union of Lublin. 

In a letter to Moscow in 1654, Bohdan Khmelnytsky thanked Tsar Aleksey Mikhaylovich  for taking „the whole Zaporizhian Host and the whole Russian Orthodox world under  the strong and high hand of the Tsar“. lt means that, in their appeals to both the Polish king  and the Russian tsar, the Cossacks referred to and defined themselves as Russian  Orthodox people. 

Over the course of the protracted war between the Russian state and the Polish- Lithuanian Commonwealth, some of the hetmans, successors of Bohdan Khmelnytsky,  would „detach themselves“ from Moscow or seek support from Sweden, Poland, or Turkey.  But, again, for the people, that was a war of liberation. It ended with the Truce of Andrusovo  in 1667. The final outcome was sealed by the Treaty of Perpetual Peace in 1686.  The Russian state incorporated the city of Kiev and the lands on the left bank  of the Dnieper River, including Poltava region, Chernigov region, and Zaporozhye. Their  inhabitants were reunited with the main part of the Russian Orthodox people. These  territories were referred to as ”Malorossia“ (Little Russia). 

The name „Ukraine“ was used more often in the meaning of the Old Russian word  ”okraina“ (periphery), which is found in written sources from the 12th century, referring  to various border territories. And the word „Ukrainian“, judging by archival documents,  originally referred to frontier guards who protected the external borders.       

On the right bank, which remained under the Polish—Lithuanian Commonwealth, the old  orders were restored, and social and religious oppression intensified. On the contrary,  the lands on the left bank, taken under the protection of the unified state, saw rapid  development. People from the other bank of the Dnieper moved here en masse. They  sought support from people who spoke the same language and had the same faith. 

During the Great Northern War with Sweden, the people in Malorossia were not faced with  a choice of whom to side with. Only a small portion of the Cossacks supported Mazepa’s  rebellion. People of all orders and degrees considered themselves Russian and Orthodox. 

Cossack senior officers belonging to the nobility would reach the heights of political,  diplomatic, and military careers in Russia. Graduates of Kiev-Mohyla Academy played  a leading role in church life. This was also the case during the Hetmanate — an essentially  autonomous state formation with a special internal structure — and later in the Russian  Empire. Malorussians in many ways helped build a big common country — its statehood,  culture, and science. They participated in the exploration and development of the Urals,  Siberia, the Caucasus, and the Far East. Incidentally, during the Soviet period, natives  of Ukraine held major, including the highest, posts in the leadership of the unified state.  Suffice it to say that Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev, whose party biography was  most closely associated with Ukraine, led the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU)  for almost 30 years. 

In the second half of the 18th century, following the wars with the Ottoman Empire, Russia  incorporated Crimea and the lands of the Black Sea region, which became known  as Novorossiya. They were populated by people from all of the Russian provinces. After  the partitions of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Russian Empire regained  the western Old Russian lands, with the exception of Galicia and Transcarpathia, which  became part of the Austrian — and later Austro-Hungarian — Empire. 

The incorporation of the western Russian lands into the single state was not merely  the result of political and diplomatic decisions. it was underlain by the common faith,  shared cultural traditions, and — I would like to emphasize it once again — language  similarity. Thus, as early as the beginning of the 17th century, one of the hierarchs  of the Uniate Church, Joseph Rutsky, communicated to Rome that people in Moscovia  called Russians from the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth their brothers, that their written  language was absolutely identical, and differences in the vernacular were insignificant. He  drew an analogy with the residents of Rome and Bergamo. These are, as we know,  the center and the north of modern Italy.      

Many centuries of fragmentation and living within different states naturally brought about  regional language peculiarities, resulting in the emergence of dialects. The vernacular  enriched the literary language. Ivan Kotlyarevsky, Grigory Skovoroda, and Taras  Shevchenko played a huge role here. Their works are our common literary and cultural  heritage.

Taras Shevchenko wrote poetry in the Ukrainian language, and prose mainly  in Russian. The books of Nikolay Gogol, a Russian patriot and native of Poltavshchyna, are  written in Russian, bristling with Malorussian folk sayings and motifs. How can this heritage  be divided between Russia and Ukraine? And why do it?  The south-western lands of the Russian Empire, Malorussia and Novorossiya,  and the Crimea developed as ethnically and religiously diverse entities. Crimean Tatars,  Armenians, Greeks, Jews, Karaites, Krymchaks, Bulgarians, Poles, Serbs, Germans,  and other peoples lived here. They all preserved their faith, traditions, and customs. 

I am not going to idealise anything. We do know there were the Valuev Circular of 1863  an then the Ems Ukaz of 1876, which restricted the publication and importation of religious  and socio-political literature in the Ukrainian language. But it is important to be mindful  of the historical context. These decisions were taken against the backdrop of dramatic  events in Poland and the desire of the leaders of the Polish national movement to exploit  the „Ukrainian issue“ to their own advantage. I should add that works of fiction, books  of Ukrainian poetry and folk songs continued to be published. There is objective evidence  that the Russian Empire was witnessing an active process of development  of the Malorussian cultural identity within the greater Russian nation, which united  the Velikorussians, the Malorussians and the Belorussians. 

At the same time, the idea of Ukrainian people as a nation separate from the Russians  started to form and gain ground among the Polish elite and a part of the Malorussian  intelligentsia. Since there was no historical basis — and could not have been any,  conclusions were substantiated by all sorts of concoctions, which went as far as to claim  that the Ukrainians are the true Slavs and the Russians, the Muscovites, are not. Such  „hypotheses“ became increasingly used for political purposes as a tool of rivalry between  European states. 

Since the late 19th century, the Austro-Hungarian authorities had latched onto this  narrative, using it as a counterbalance to the Polish national movement and pro-Muscovite  sentiments in Galicia. During World War l, Vienna played a role in the formation of the so-called Legion of Ukrainian Sich Riflemen. Galicians suspected of sympathies with Orthodox  Christianity and Russia were subjected to brutal repression and thrown into  the concentration camps of Thalerhof and Terezin.  

Further developments had to do with the collapse of European empires, the fierce civil war  that broke out across the vast territory of the former Russian Empire, and foreign  intervention. 

After the February Revolution, in March 1917, the Central Rada was established in Kiev,  intended to become the organ of supreme power. ln November 1917, in its Third Universal,  it declared the creation of the Ukrainian People’s Republic (UPR) as part of Russia. 

ln December 1917, UPR representatives arrived in Brest-Litovsk, where Soviet Russia was  negotiating with Germany and its allies. At a meeting on 10 January 1918, the head  of the Ukrainian delegation read out a note proclaiming the independence of Ukraine.  Subsequently, the Central Rada proclaimed Ukraine independent in its Fourth Universal. 

The declared sovereignty did not last long. Just a few weeks later, Rada delegates signed  a separate treaty with the German bloc countries. Germany and Austria-Hungary were  at the time in a dire situation and needed Ukrainian bread and raw materials. In order  to secure large-scale supplies, they obtained consent for sending their troops and technical  staff to the UPR. In fact, this was used as a pretext for occupation. 

For those who have today given up the full control of Ukraine to external forces, it would be  instructive to remember that, back in 1918, such a decision proved fatal for the ruling  regime in Kiev. With the direct involvement of the occupying forces, the Central Rada was  overthrown and Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi was brought to power, proclaiming instead  of the UPR the Ukrainian State, which was essentially under German protectorate. 

ln November 1918 — following the revolutionary events in Germany and Austria-Hungary —  Pavlo Skoropadskyi, who had lost the support of German bayonets, took a different course,  declaring that „Ukraine is to take the lead in the formation of an All-Russian Federation“.  However, the regime was soon changed again. lt was now the time of the so-called  Directorate. 

ln autumn 1918, Ukrainian nationalists proclaimed the West Ukrainian People’s Republic  (WUPR) and, in January 1919, announced its unification with the Ukrainian People’s  Republic. In July 1919, Ukrainian forces were crushed by Polish troops, and the territory  of the former WUPR came under the Polish rule. 

In April 1920, Symon Petliura (portrayed as one of the „heroes“ in today’s Ukraine)  concluded secret conventions on behalf of the UPR Directorate, giving up — in exchange  for military support – Galicia and Western Volhynia lands to Poland. In May 1920, Petliurites entered Kiev in a convoy of Polish military units. But not for long. As early  as November 1920, following a truce between Poland and Soviet Russia, the remnants  of Petliura’s forces surrendered to those same Poles. 

The example of the UPR shows that different kinds of quasi-state formations that emerged  across the former Russian Empire at the time of the Civil War and turbulence were  inherently unstable. Nationalists sought to create their own independent states, while  leaders of the White movement advocated indivisible Russia. Many of the republics  established by the Bolsheviks‘ supporters did not see themselves outside Russia either.  Nevertheless, Bolshevik Party leaders sometimes basically drove them out of Soviet Russia  for various reasons. 

Thus, in early 1918, the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic was proclaimed and asked  Moscow to incorporate it into Soviet Russia. This was met with a refusal. During a meeting  with the republic’s leaders, Vladimir Lenin insisted that they act as part of Soviet Ukraine.  On 15 March 1918, the Central Committee of the Russian Communist Party (Bolsheviks)  directly ordered that delegates be sent to the Ukrainian Congress of Soviets, including from  the Donetsk Basin, and that „one government for all of Ukraine“ be created  at the congress. The territories of the Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic later formed  most of the regions of south-eastern Ukraine. 

Under the 1921 Treaty of Riga, concluded between the Russian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR  and Poland, the western lands of the former Russian Empire were ceded to Poland.  In the interwar period, the Polish government pursued an active resettlement policy,  seeking to change the ethnic composition of the Eastern Borderlands — the Polish name  for what is now Western Ukraine, Western Belarus and parts of Lithuania. The areas were  subjected to harsh Polonisation, local culture and traditions suppressed. Later, during  World War ll, radical groups of Ukrainian nationalists used this as a pretext for terror not  only against Polish, but also against Jewish and Russian populations. 

In 1922, when the USSR was created, with the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic  becoming one of its founders, a rather fierce debate among the Bolshevik leaders resulted  in the implementation of Lenin’s plan to form a union state as a federation of equal  republics. The right for the republics to freely secede from the Union was included  in the text of the Declaration on the Creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and,  subsequently, in the 1924 USSR Constitution. By doing so, the authors planted  in the foundation of our statehood the most dangerous time bomb, which exploded  the moment the safety mechanism provided by the leading role of the CPSU was gone,  the party itself collapsing from within. A „parade of sovereignties“ followed. On 8 December 1991, the so-called Belovezh Agreement on the Creation of the Commonwealth  of Independent States was signed, stating that „the USSR as a subject of international law  and a geopolitical reality no longer existed.“ By the way, Ukraine never signed or ratified  the ClS Charter adopted back in 1993. 

In the 1920’s-1930’s, the Bolsheviks actively promoted the ”localization policy“, which  took the form of Ukrainization in the Ukrainian SSR. Symbolically, as part of this policy  and with consent of the Soviet authorities, Mikhail Grushevskiy, former chairman of Central  Rada, one of the ideologists of Ukrainian nationalism, who at a certain period of time had  been supported by Austria-Hungary, was returned to the USSR and was elected member  of the Academy of Sciences. 

The localization policy undoubtedly played a major role in the development  and consolidation of the Ukrainian culture, language and identity. At the same time, under  the guise of combating the so-called Russian great-power chauvinism, Ukrainization was  often imposed on those who did not see themselves as Ukrainians. This Soviet national  policy secured at the state level the provision on three separate Slavic peoples: Russian,  Ukrainian and Belorussian, instead of the large Russian nation, a triune people comprising  Velikorussians, Malorussians and Belorussians. 

In 1939, the USSR regained the lands earlier seized by Poland. A major portion of these  became part of the Soviet Ukraine. In 1940, the Ukrainian SSR incorporated part  of Bessarabia, which had been occupied by Romania since 1918, as well as Northern  Bukovina. In 1948, Zmeyiniy Island (Snake Island) in the Black Sea became part of Ukraine.  In 1954, the Crimean Region of the RSFSR was given to the Ukrainian SSR, in gross  violation of legal norms that were in force at the time. 

I would like to dwell on the destiny of Carpathian Ruthenia, which became part  of Czechoslovakia following the breakup of Austria-Hungary. Rusins made up  a considerable share of local population. While this is hardly mentioned any longer, after  the liberation of Transcarpathia by Soviet troops the congress of the Orthodox population  of the region voted for the inclusion of Carpathian Ruthenia in the RSFSR or, as a separate  Carpathian republic, in the USSR proper. Yet the choice of people was ignored. In summer  1945, the historical act of the reunification of Carpathian Ukraine „with its ancient  motherland, Ukraine“ — as The Pravda newspaper put it – was announced. 

Therefore, modern Ukraine is entirely the product of the Soviet era. We know  and remember well that it was shaped — for a significant part — on the lands of historical  Russia. To make sure of that, it is enough to look at the boundaries of the lands reunited with the Russian state in the 17th century and the territory of the Ukrainian SSR when it left  the Soviet Union. 

The Bolsheviks treated the Russian people as inexhaustible material for their social  experiments. They dreamt of a world revolution that would wipe out national states. That is  why they were so generous in drawing borders and bestowing territorial gifts. lt is no longer  important what exactly the idea of the Bolshevik leaders who were chopping the country  into pieces was. We can disagree about minor details, background and logics behind  certain decisions. One fact is crystal clear: Russia was robbed, indeed. 

When working on this article, l relied on open-source documents that contain well-known  facts rather than on some secret records. The leaders of modern Ukraine and their external  „patrons“ prefer to overlook these facts. They do not miss a chance, however, both inside  the country and abroad, to condemn ”the crimes of the Soviet regime,“ listing among them  events with which neither the CPSU, nor the USSR, let alone modern Russia, have anything  to do. At the same time, the Bolsheviks‘ efforts to detach from Russia its historical  territories are not considered a crime. And we know why: if they brought about  the weakening of Russia, our ill-wishes are happy with that. 

Of course, inside the USSR, borders between republics were never seen as state borders;  they were nominal within a single country, which, while featuring all the attributes  of a federation, was highly centralized – this, again, was secured by the CPSU’s leading  role. But in 1991, all those territories, and, which is more important, people, found  themselves abroad overnight, taken away, this time indeed, from their historical  motherland. 

What can be said to this? Things change: countries and communities are no exception.  Of course, some part of a people in the process of its development, influenced by a number  of reasons and historical circumstances, can become aware of itself as a separate nation  at a certain moment. How should we treat that? There is only one answer: with respect! 

You want to establish a state of your own: you are welcome! But what are the terms? l will  recall the assessment given by one of the most prominent political figures of new Russia,  first mayor of Saint Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak. As a legal expert who believed that every  decision must be legitimate, in 1992, he shared the following opinion: the republics that  were founders of the Union, having denounced the 1922 Union Treaty, must return  to the boundaries they had had before joining the Soviet Union. All other territorial  acquisitions are subject to discussion, negotiations, given that the ground has been  revoked.       

In other words, when you leave, take what you brought with you. This logic is hard to refute.  I will just say that the Bolsheviks had embarked on reshaping boundaries even before  the Soviet Union, manipulating with territories to their liking, in disregard of people’s views. 

The Russian Federation recognized the new geopolitical realities: and not only recognized,  but, indeed, did a lot for Ukraine to establish itself as an independent country. Throughout  the difficult 1990’s and in the new millennium, we have provided considerable support  to Ukraine. Whatever „political arithmetic“ of its own Kiev may wish to apply, in 1991-  2013, Ukraine’s budget savings amounted to more than USD 82 billion, while today, it  holds on to the mere USD 1.5 billion of Russian payments for gas transit to Europe. If  economic ties between our countries had been retained, Ukraine would enjoy the benefit  of tens of billions of dollars. 

Ukraine and Russia have developed as a single economic system over decades  and centuries. The profound cooperation we had 30 years ago is an example  for the European Union to look up to. We are natural complementary economic partners.  Such a close relationship can strengthen competitive advantages, increasing the potential  of both countries. 

Ukraine used to possess great potential, which included powerful infrastructure, gas  transportation system, advanced shipbuilding, aviation, rocket and instrument engineering  industries, as well as world-class scientific, design and engineering schools. Taking over  this legacy and declaring independence, Ukrainian leaders promised that the Ukrainian  economy would be one of the leading ones and the standard of living would be among  the best in Europe. 

Today, high-tech industrial giants that were once the pride of Ukraine and the entire Union,  are sinking. Engineering output has dropped by 42 per cent over ten years. The scale  of deindustrialization and overall economic degradation is visible in Ukraine’s electricity  production, which has seen a nearly two-time decrease in 30 years. Finally, according  to IMF reports, in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic broke out, Ukraine’s GDP per  capita had been below USD 4 thousand. This is less than in the Republic of Albania,  the Republic of Moldova, or unrecognized Kosovo. Nowadays, Ukraine is Europe’s poorest  country. 

Who is to blame for this? ls it the people of Ukraine’s fault? Certainly not. It was  the Ukrainian authorities who waisted and frittered away the achievements of many  generations. We know how hardworking and talented the people of Ukraine are. They can  achieve success and outstanding results with perseverance and determination. And these qualities, as well as their openness, innate optimism and hospitality have not gone.  The feelings of millions of people who treat Russia not just well but with great affection, just  as we feel about Ukraine, remain the same. 

Until 2014, hundreds of agreements and joint projects were aimed at developing our  economies, business and cultural ties, strengthening security, and solving common social  and environmental problems. They brought tangible benefits to people — both in Russia  and Ukraine. This is what we believed to be most important. And that is why we had  a fruitful interaction with all, l emphasize, with all the leaders of Ukraine. 

Even after the events in Kiev of 2014, l charged the Russian government to elaborate  options for preserving and maintaining our economic ties within relevant ministries  and agencies. However, there was and is still no mutual will to do the same. Nevertheless,  Russia is still one of Ukraine’s top three trading partners, and hundreds of thousands  of Ukrainians are coming to us to work, and they find a welcome reception and support. So  that what the „aggressor state“ is. 

When the USSR collapsed, many people in Russia and Ukraine sincerely believed  and assumed that our close cultural, spiritual and economic ties would certainly last,  as would the commonality of our people, who had always had a sense of unity at their core.  However, events — at first gradually, and then more rapidly — started to move in a different  direction. 

In essence, Ukraine’s ruling circles decided to justify their country’s independence through  the denial of its past, however, except for border issues. They began to mythologize  and rewrite history, edit out everything that united us, and refer to the period when Ukraine  was part of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union as an occupation. The common tragedy of collectivization and famine of the early 1930s was portrayed as the genocide of the Ukrainian people. 

Radicals and neo-Nazis were open and more and more insolent about their ambitions. They  were indulged by both the official authorities and local oligarchs, who robbed the people  of Ukraine and kept their stolen money in Western banks, ready to sell their motherland  for the sake of preserving their capital. To this should be added the persistent weakness  of state institutions and the position of a willing hostage to someone else’s geopolitical will. 

I recall that long ago, well before 2014, the U.S. and EU countries systematically  and consistently pushed Ukraine to curtail and limit economic cooperation with Russia. We,  as the largest trade and economic partner of Ukraine, suggested discussing the emerging problems in the Ukraine-Russia-EU format. But every time we were told that Russia had  nothing to do with it and that the issue concerned only the EU and Ukraine. De facto  Western countries rejected Russia’s repeated calls for dialogue. 

Step by step, Ukraine was dragged into a dangerous geopolitical game aimed at turning  Ukraine into a barrier between Europe and Russia, a springboard against Russia. inevitably, there came a time when the concept of „Ukraine is not Russia“ was no longer an option.  There was a need for the  ”anti-Russia“ concept which we will never accept. 

The owners of this project took as a basis the old groundwork of the Polish-Austrian  ideologists to create an ”anti-Moscow Russia“. And there is no need to deceive anyone that  this is being done in the interests of the people of Ukraine. The Polish-Lithuanian  Commonwealth never needed Ukrainian culture, much less Cossack autonomy. In Austria-Hungary, historical Russian lands were mercilessly exploited and remained the poorest.  The Nazis, abetted by collaborators from the OUN-UPA, did not need Ukraine, but a living  space and slaves for Aryan overlords. 

Nor were the interests of the Ukrainian people thought of in February 2014. The legitimate  public discontent, caused by acute socio-economic problems, mistakes, and inconsistent  actions of the authorities of the time, was simply cynically exploited. Western countries  directly interfered in Ukraine’s internal affairs and supported the coup. Radical nationalist  groups served as its battering ram. Their slogans, ideology, and blatant aggressive  Russophobia have to a large extent become defining elements of state policy in Ukraine. 

All the things that united us and bring us together so far came under attack. First  and foremost, the Russian language. Let me remind you that the new „Maidan“ authorities  first tried to repeal the law on state language policy. Then there was the law  on the „purification of power“, the law on education that virtually cut the Russian language  out of the educational process. 

Lastly, as early as May of this year, the current president introduced a bill on „indigenous  peoples“ to the Rada. Only those who constitute an ethnic minority and do not have their  own state entity outside Ukraine are recognized as indigenous. The law has been passed.  New seeds of discord have been sown. And this is happening in a country, as I have already  noted, that is very complex in terms of its territorial, national and linguistic composition,  and its history of formation. 

There may be an argument: if you are talking about a single large nation, a triune nation,  then what difference does it make who people consider themselves to be — Russians, Ukrainians, or Belarusians. I completely agree with this. Especially since the determination  of nationality, particularly in mixed families, is the right of every individual, free to make his  or her own choice. 

But the fact is that the situation in Ukraine today is completely different because it involves  a forced change of identity. And the most despicable thing is that the Russians in Ukraine  are being forced not only to deny their roots, generations of their ancestors but also  to believe that Russia is their enemy. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the path  of forced assimilation, the formation of an ethnically pure Ukrainian state, aggressive  towards Russia, is comparable in its consequences to the use of weapons of mass  destruction against us. As a result of such a harsh and artificial division of Russians  and Ukrainians, the Russian people in all may decrease by hundreds of thousands or even  millions. 

Our spiritual unity has also been attacked. As in the days of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania,  a new ecclesiastical has been initiated. The secular authorities, making no secret of their  political aims, have blatantly interfered in church life and brought things to a split,  to the seizure of churches, the beating of priests and monks. Even extensive autonomy  of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church while maintaining spiritual unity with the Moscow  Patriarchate strongly displeases them. They have to destroy this prominent and centuries-old symbol of our kinship at all costs. 

I think it is also natural that the representatives of Ukraine over and over again vote against  the UN General Assembly resolution condemning the glorification of Nazism. Marches  and torchlit processions in honor of remaining war criminals from the SS units take place  under the protection of the official authorities. Mazepa, who betrayed everyone, Petliura,  who paid for Polish patronage with Ukrainian lands, and Bandera, who collaborated with  the Nazis, are ranked as national heroes. Everything is being done to erase from  the memory of young generations the names of genuine patriots and victors, who have  always been the pride of Ukraine. 

For the Ukrainians who fought in the Red Army, in partisan units, the Great Patriotic War  was indeed a patriotic war because they were defending their home, their great common  Motherland. Over two thousand soldiers became Heroes of the Soviet Union. Among them  are legendary pilot lvan Kozhedub, fearless sniper, defender of Odessa and Sevastopol  Lyudmila Pavlichenko, valiant guerrilla commander Sidor Kovpak. This indomitable  generation fought, those people gave their lives for our future, for us. To forget their feat is  to betray our grandfathers, mothers and fathers.       

The anti-Russia project has been rejected by millions of Ukrainians. The people of Crimea  and residents of Sevastopol made their historic choice. And people in the southeast  peacefully tried to defend their stance. Yet, all of them, including children, were labeled  as separatists and terrorists. They were threatened with ethnic cleansing and the use  of military force. And the residents of Donetsk and Lugansk took up arms to defend their  home, their language and their lives. Were they left any other choice after the riots that  swept through the cities of Ukraine, after the horror and tragedy of 2 May 2014 in Odessa  where Ukrainian neo-Nazis burned people alive making a new Khatyn out of it? The same  massacre was ready to be carried out by the followers of Bandera in Crimea, Sevastopol,  Donetsk and Lugansk. Even now they do not abandon such plans. They are biding their  time. But their time will not come. 

The coup d’état and the subsequent actions of the Kiev authorities inevitably provoked  confrontation and civil war. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights estimates that  the total number of victims in the conflict in Donbas has exceeded 13,000. Among them  are the elderly and children. These are terrible, irreparable losses. 

Russia has done everything to stop fratricide. The Minsk agreements aimed at a peaceful  settlement of the conflict in Donbas have been concluded. I am convinced that they still  have no alternative. In any case, no one has withdrawn their signatures from the Minsk  Package of Measures or from the relevant statements by the leaders of the Normandy  format countries. No one has initiated a review of the United Nations Security Council  resolution of 17 February 2015. 

During official negotiations, especially after being reined in by Western partners, Ukraine’s  representatives regularly declare their „full adherence“ to the Minsk agreements, but are  in fact guided by a position of „unacceptability“. They do not intend to seriously discuss  either the special status of Donbas or safeguards for the people living there. They prefer  to exploit the image of the „victim of external aggression“ and peddle Russophobia. They  arrange bloody provocations in Donbas. In short, they attract the attention of external  patrons and masters by all means. 

Apparently, and l am becoming more and more convinced of this: Kiev simply does not  need Donbas. Why? Because, firstly, the inhabitants of these regions will never accept  the order that they have tried and are trying to impose by force, blockade and threats.  And secondly, the outcome of both Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 which give a real chance  to peacefully restore the territorial integrity of Ukraine by coming to an agreement directly  with the DPR and LPR with Russia, Germany and France as mediators, contradicts  the entire logic of the anti-Russia project. And it can only be sustained by the constant cultivation of the image of an internal and external enemy. And I would add — under  the protection and control of the Western powers. 

This is what is actually happening. First of all, we are facing the creation of a climate of fear  in Ukrainian society, aggressive rhetoric, indulging neo-Nazis and militarising the country.  Along with that we are witnessing not just complete dependence but direct external control,  including the supervision of the Ukrainian authorities, security services and armed forces  by foreign advisers, military „development“ of the territory of Ukraine and deployment  of NATO infrastructure. It is no coincidence that the aforementioned flagrant law  on „indigenous peoples“ was adopted under the cover of large-scale NATO exercises  in Ukraine. 

This is also a disguise for the takeover of the rest of the Ukrainian economy  and the exploitation of its natural resources. The sale of agricultural land is not far off,  and it is obvious who will buy it up. From time to time, Ukraine is indeed given financial  resources and loans, but under their own conditions and pursuing their own interests, with  preferences and benefits for Western companies. By the way, who will pay these debts  back? Apparently, it is assumed that this will have to be done not only by today’s generation  of Ukrainians but also by their children, grandchildren and probably great-grandchildren. 

The Western authors of the anti-Russia project set up the Ukrainian political system in such  a way that presidents, members of parliament and ministers would change but the attitude  of separation from and enmity with Russia would remain. Reaching peace was the main election slogan of the incumbent president. He came to power with this. The promises  turned out to be lies. Nothing has changed. And in some ways the situation in Ukraine  and around Donbas has even degenerated. 

In the anti-Russia project, there is no place either for a sovereign Ukraine or for the political  forces that are trying to defend its real independence. Those who talk about reconciliation  in Ukrainian society, about dialogue, about finding a way out of the current impasse are  labelled as „pro-Russian“ agents. 

Again, for many people in Ukraine, the anti-Russia project is simply unacceptable.  And there are millions of such people. But they are not allowed to raise their heads. They  have had their legal opportunity to defend their point of view in fact taken away from them.  They are intimidated, driven underground. Not only are they persecuted for their  convictions, for the spoken word, for the open expression of their position, but they are also  killed. Murderers, as a rule, go unpunished.       

Today, the ”right“ patriot of Ukraine is only the one who hates Russia. Moreover, the entire  Ukrainian statehood, as we understand it, is proposed to be further built exclusively on this  idea. Hate and anger, as world history has repeatedly proved this, are a very shaky  foundation for sovereignty, fraught with many serious risks and dire consequences. 

All the subterfuges associated with the anti-Russia project are clear to us. And we will never  allow our historical territories and people close to us living there to be used against Russia.  And to those who will undertake such an attempt, I would like to say that this way they will  destroy their own country. 

The incumbent authorities in Ukraine like to refer to Western experience, seeing it  as a model to follow. Just have a look at how Austria and Germany, the USA and Canada live next to each other. Close in ethnic composition, culture, in fact sharing one language, they  remain sovereign states with their own interests, with their own foreign policy. But this does  not prevent them from the closest integration or allied relations. They have very conditional,  transparent borders. And when crossing them the citizens feel at home. They create  families, study, work, do business. Incidentally, so do millions of those born in Ukraine who  now live in Russia. We see them as our own close people. 

Russia is open to dialogue with Ukraine and ready to discuss the most complex issues. But  it is important for us to understand that our partner is defending its national interests but  not serving someone else’s, and is not a tool in someone else’s hands to fight against us. 

We respect the Ukrainian language and traditions. We respect Ukrainians‘ desire to see  their country free, safe and prosperous. 

l am confident that true sovereignty of Ukraine is possible only in partnership with Russia.  Our spiritual, human and civilizational ties formed for centuries and have their origins  in the same sources, they have been hardened by common trials, achievements  and victories. Our kinship has been transmitted from generation to generation. It is  in the hearts and the memory of people living in modern Russia and Ukraine, in the blood  ties that unite millions of our families. Together we have always been and will be many  times stronger and more successful. For we are one people. 

Today, these words may be perceived by some people with hostility. They can be interpreted  in many possible ways. Yet, many people will hear me. And I will say one thing – Russia has  never been and will never be „anti-Ukraine“. And what Ukraine will be — it is up to its  citizens to decide.       

Publication status

Published in sections: News, Transcripts

Publication date: July 12, 2021, 17:00

Direct link: en.kremlin.ru/d/66181