Putin vows Russia not going to have decades of its progress reversed
Dhaka July 19 2022 :
Inside Russia : Outside Russia : News Digest by the the Embassy of Russian Federation in Bangladesh on July 19 2022.
Putin vows Russia not going to have decades of its progress reversed
NOVO-OGARYOVO, July 18. /TASS/. Russia is not going to lose heart or have decades of its progress reversed, despite inhospitable forecasts from opponents, President Vladimir Putin told the Council for Strategic Development at a meeting on Monday.
The president said Russia was being completely denied access to foreign hi-tech products.
“We understand that this is a major challenge to our country, however we are not going to lose heart or have decades of our progress reversed, despite predictions from a number of our ill-wishers, the opposite is true,” Putin insisted.
“[We are] aware of the huge amount of obstacles” being put up, so Russia will be “looking for new solutions while making effective use of its own technological capacities available in the country and research by innovative Russian companies,” Putin explained.
“I understand that this is a complicated task. All of us are perfectly aware of that. And it’s also clear that we cannot and will not live in isolation from the rest of the world,” the Russian president pledged.
The head of state stressed that Russia cannot be isolated from the rest of the world, or fenced off from it.
“Obviously, we cannot develop in isolation from the rest of the world. And we won’t. It is impossible in the present-day world to merely issue as decree and erect a huge fence. It is simply impossible,” he said and outlined top priority tasks.
According to the president, one of such tasks is to develop end-to-end technologies, which have major influence on structural changes in the economy.
Kremlin on sanctions: What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger
MOSCOW, July 18. /TASS/. Sanctions against Russia are the price the country has to pay for its independence and sovereignty, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in an interview with the Iranian state-run broadcaster.
In a fragment of the interview shown on the Rossiya-24 television on Monday, Peskov said Moscow, just like Tehran, had got used to sanctions, with “thousands” of those imposed since the Soviet era.
“That is perhaps the price both this country and Iran have to pay for their independence and sovereignty. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” the presidential spokesman emphasized.
In his interview with Iranian reporters ahead of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Tehran, the Kremlin spokesman noted that Iran had been under sanctions for several decades now and “is well adapted to the business of progressing and improving the nation’s welfare despite the restrictions” which he said were absolutely unlawful in terms of international law.
Germany and France ‘killed’ Minsk agreements – Russia
Berlin and Paris torpedoed the 2015 ceasefire deal for Donbass by shielding Kiev’s non-compliance, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said
Germany is demanding that Russia guarantee Ukraine’s territorial integrity, but such a deal was previously signed, only to be “killed” by Berlin and Paris, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday.
“When [German Chancellor] Olaf Scholz demands that Russia should be compelled to sign an agreement granting Ukraine guarantees of territorial integrity and sovereignty, all his attempts are in vain. There was already such a deal – the Minsk agreements – which was killed by Berlin and Paris. They were shielding Kiev, which openly refused to comply,” he wrote in an op-ed for the Russian newspaper Izvestia.
Russia, Germany and France brokered the 2015 Minsk agreements between Ukraine and Donbass, which were designed to put an end to hostilities. But according to Lavrov, Berlin and Paris failed to ensure Kiev’s compliance.
The Russian foreign minister noted that former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko admitted the Minsk agreements meant nothing for Kiev, and Ukraine used them only to buy time.
“Our task was to stave off the threat… to buy time to restore economic growth and create powerful armed forces. This task was achieved. The Minsk Agreements have fulfilled their mission,” Poroshenko said in June.
Lavrov also mentioned that in December 2019, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had a chance to fulfil the Minsk agreements at the so-called Normandy format summit held in Paris. After negotiations with leaders of Russia, Germany and France, Zelensky pledged to resolve issues surrounding the special status of Donbass. “Of course, he did nothing, and Berlin and Paris were shielding him once again,” he noted.
The Minsk agreements included a series of measures designed to rein in hostilities in Donbass and reconcile the warring parties. The first steps were a ceasefire and an OSCE-monitored pullout of heavy weapons from the frontline, which were fulfilled to some degree.
Kiev was then supposed to grant a general amnesty to the rebels and extensive autonomy for the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. Ukrainian troops were supposed to take control of the rebel-held areas after Kiev granted them representation, and otherwise reintegrate them as part of Ukraine.
Poroshenko’s government refused to implement these portions of the deal, claiming it could not proceed unless it fully secured the border between the breakaway republics and Russia. He instead endorsed an economic blockade of the rebel regions, initiated by Ukrainian nationalist forces.
Zelensky’s presidency gave an initial boost to the peace process, but stalled after a series of protests by right-wing radicals, who threatened to depose the new Ukrainian president if he tried to deliver on his campaign promises.
Kiev’s failure to implement the roadmap, and the continued hostilities with rebels, were among the primary reasons cited by Russia when it attacked Ukraine in late February. Days before launching the offensive, Moscow recognized the breakaway Ukrainian republics as sovereign states, offering them security guarantees and demanding that Kiev pull back its troops. Zelensky refused to comply.
Siemens turbine for Nord Stream pipeline shipped from Canada to Germany — report
MOSCOW, July 18. /TASS/. The Siemens turbine has been shipped from the maintenance facility in Canada to Germany by plane, and is expected to arrive in Russia on July 24, Kommersant reported Monday citing sources close to the situation.
The repaired turbine, used to supply gas via the Nord Stream pipeline from Russia to Germany, is being delivered by plane instead of by sea, as was planned initially. The turbine will then be shipped by a ferry and delivered to Russia through Finland by land.
According to Kommersant, the gas piping equipment should begin working in early August, considering the time necessary for installation procedure. The newspaper was not able to obtain a commentary from either Siemens Energy or Gazprom.
Following numerous requests from Germany, Canada decided to return the repaired Siemens turbine on July 9. The European Commission claimed that this will not violated EU sanctions, because they do not cover gas shipment equipment.
EU to keep sanctions if peace in Ukraine signed on Russia’s terms — Germany’s Scholz
BERLIN, July 18. /TASS/. The EU will not withdraw the sanctions, imposed on Russia over the situation in Ukraine, if Moscow and Kiev sign peace treaty on Russia’s terms, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in his article for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagzeitung, published Sunday.
“The part of the new reality is that the EU has also consolidated. It has reacted to the Russian aggression quite unanimously and imposed unprecedentedly harsh sanctions,” Scholz said. “We knew it from the start that we will potentially have to keep these sanctions for a long time.”
“And it is also clear that not a single one of these sanctions will be withdrawn in case of peace, dictated by Russia,” he continued. “There is no other path for an agreement with Ukraine for Russia than the one that could be accepted by the Ukrainians.”
“We will support Ukraine for as long as it will require this support: economic, humanitarian, financial and by arms shipments. At the same time, we guarantee that NATO will not become a side of the war,” Scholz claimed.
Putin to discuss bilateral, regional issues with Iran’s leadership, Turkey’s Erdogan
MOSCOW, July 18. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold meetings with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during his visit to Tehran on July 19, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in an interview with the National Iranian Radio and Television, which was broadcast on Monday on the Rossiya-24 TV channel.
He noted that the main purpose of Putin’s visit to Tehran is to participate in the Astana Troika summit. “In addition, our president has three meetings scheduled: these are talks with President Raisi, with President Erdogan, and the president will also pay a visit to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. We hope it will be a very comprehensive dialogue,” the Kremlin spokesman said.
According to him, the leaders will be able to discuss bilateral relations at the meetings, “first and foremost, trade and economic relations with both Iran and Turkey.” “[There will be] prospects and all modalities for continuing the political dialogue with both Iran and Turkey, and exchanging views on the most relevant topics, because there are so many hot spots around us that need our cooperation in order to resolve them,” Peskov noted, pointing out the topics of the upcoming talks.
Western sanctions to bring third world ‘to its knees’, not Russia — Sri Lankan PM
NEW DELHI, July 18. /TASS/. Western sanctions introduced against Russia won’t bring it down to its knees, while third world countries will suffer, Sri Lanka’s acting president, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Monday.
“Do you think sanctions will help? It will only drag the prices up. […] Let us look at the sanctions that are being imposed and ask ourselves if this is necessary. The sanctions won’t bring Russia to its knees, but it will bring the rest of the third world to its knees,” he said at an international panel discussion on preventing hunger and famine as quoted by India’s Doordarshan TV channel.
According to the official, the sanctions affect such countries as Sri Lanka where food products are not generally accessible. “Our issue in Sri Lanka is partly self-made and partly due to the global crisis,” he said, adding that “a global crisis and an internal crisis both have come together and brought us to a level where many estimate that as much as 6 million people are facing malnutrition.”
Overall, Wickremesinghe thinks that the Western anti-Russian sanctions and the events in Ukraine caused the global food and fuel crises.
The situation in Ukraine and the barrage of sanctions that the United States and the European Union imposed on Russia have disrupted grain supplies, raising the risk of a food crisis in a number of countries. Wheat and corn prices have soared since the beginning of the year. A UN Security Council meeting on May 21 revealed that global wheat stocks would last for only ten weeks and the situation was worse than it had been in 2007 and 2008.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said earlier that the global food crisis, triggered by the coronavirus pandemic and miscalculations by Western countries, had erupted long before the launch of Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine. According to Russia’s chief diplomat, the current situation exacerbated the problem and the Western sanctions became one of the main reasons for the food supply disruptions.
SPECIAL MILITARY OPERATION IN UKRAINE
Ukraine’s ‘foreign legion’ struck by missiles – Russia
Up to 250 foreign mercenaries were killed in the attack, the Ministry of Defense has claimed
A facility used by Ukraine’s “foreign legion” in Donbass has been targeted in a Russian missile strike that killed up to 250 mercenaries and destroyed a number of military vehicles, Moscow’s Ministry of Defense announced on Monday.
“A temporary mercenary deployment point of the so-called Ukrainian ‘foreign legion’ was hit with high-precision air-launched missiles in the settlement of Konstantinovka in the Donetsk People’s Republic,” the ministry claimed.
“Up to 250 foreign militants, seven armored vehicles, as well as 12 special purpose vehicles were taken out,” it added.
Kiev’s foreign military unit was created in late February at the request of President Volodymyr Zelensky, and is officially known as the International Legion of Territorial Defense of Ukraine.
The Russian military said it had conducted another high-precision strike on the temporary deployment point of a battalion of the 118th Brigade of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense forces in central Ukraine’s Cherkasy Region. The strike killed up to 60 nationalists and destroyed two multiple rocket launcher systems, along with four artillery pieces.
Russian military spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov said last month that the best thing foreign mercenaries could expect was a “long term in prison.” He also claimed that attempts by Ukrainian officials to provide foreign fighters with legal protection by adding them to the list of the armed forces or giving them Ukrainian passports would not save them from prosecution.
He also revealed that hundreds of foreign mercenaries in Ukraine had been killed by Russian long-range precision weapons “shortly after their arrival at the places where they were undergoing additional training and where the tactical units were coordinated.” However, most of them, according to the spokesman, were killed “due to a low level of training and a lack of real combat experience.”
Data from the Russian Defense Ministry shows that 6,956 foreign citizens from 64 countries arrived in Ukraine to become pro-Kiev combatants between February 24 and June 17. Some 1,956 of those have been killed, while 1,779 have left the country, the ministry said.
The latest strikes come after Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu announced on Monday that the Russian ‘East’ grouping in Donbass would make Ukraine’s long-range weapons their primary target. The Defense Ministry claimed that Kiev was using them to strike residential areas in Donbass and set wheat fields and grain warehouses on fire.
Russian military given new priority in Ukraine
Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has told military commanders of the ‘East’ grouping in Donbass to make Ukraine’s long-range weapons their primary target. The order came as he inspected troops stationed around Donetsk, the main city of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Shoigu gave orders to prioritize striking Ukrainian missile and artillery capabilities, due to their use by Kiev in targeting residential areas in Donbass and setting wheat fields and grain warehouses on fire, the Defense Ministry said in a statement on Monday.
Ukraine’s long-range arms, which beside Soviet-designed systems include US-supplied HIMARS multiple rocket launchers, French CAESAR self-propelled howitzers and other foreign hardware, should be hit with high-precision weapons, according to the minister.
On Monday, the People’s Republics of Donetsk said its territory had been shelled 53 times from the Ukrainian side over the past 24 hours, with more than 660 projectiles being fired.
During their meeting, the commander of the ‘East’ grouping, Lieutenant General Rustam Muradov, informed Shoigu “about the current situation and the progress achieved in fulfilling the assigned combat tasks of destroying the opposing forces,” the ministry said.
Shoigu’s unannounced tour of the Russian forces in Donbass was first revealed by the Defense Ministry on Sunday, when it said that the minister had inspected the ‘South’ and ‘Center’ groupings, meeting with their commanders, Army General Sergey Surovikin and Colonel General Alexander Lapin.
Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.
Nobody needs Ukraine in the European Union — Readovka.world
Andrea Lucidi, Lawyer, Researcher at the Department of Comparative Public Law at the «Luigi Vanvitelli» University in Italy gave an exclusive interview for Readovka on Italian media information hiding, true intentions of NATO and the US and Italy’s loss of sovereignty.
Do you think the Ukrainian crisis affects ordinary citizens of Italy? In your opinion, how do most Italians feel about a special military operation?
Answering the first question is no easy task, and a little introduction is needed.
As of now, Mario Draghi is in charge of a government supported by all the forces in Parliament. There’s no real opposition, as a matter of fact the Government keeps on ruling, decree after decree, without any real debate in the Houses, despite Italy being deemed a democratic country. By consequence, a big part of the population is now hostile towards Mario Draghi and towards the European Union.
Many Italians are in fact opposed both to the Draghi administration and to the military aids being sent to Ukraine, even though most do not realise that it’s the taxes they pay that end up financing such aids and whatever Ukrainians are using them for. Nobody in our media is covering on any level what is happening in the Donbas, if not very few independent journalists who are given a platform to speak out, but who nonetheless end up in the black books of the secret service as Russian agents.
I myself was strongly disappointed in our media coverage, as I’ve been following the situation in the Donbas closely for many years, also due to my university research. We have come to a point in which the media are in complete denial about the rampant neo-Nazism in Ukraine, about the pleas of the Donbas people and about how Western military aids are being used in this region.
In the last two days little kids died in the Donbas, yet no news organization even mentioned that. If it weren’t for the few independent publications managed over social media platforms and for few TV programs that have on their show independent journalists who work in the Donbas – Vittorio Rangeloni and Giorgio Bianchi to mention a few – people could not be made aware of what really is going on there.
The government and the EU are using information at hand as a political cudgel to keep fomenting what is by all means real Russophobia.
You constantly hear and read about how bad the Russians are, that the Ukrainians are the victims and that the aggression in the Donbas was acted upon by the Russians. These are the themes mainstream media run on when they’re covering the special military operation and the Donbas.
What I can say is that big part of the population here has begun to realise how things are not exactly as they’re being told. It’s worth looking at data about the last local elections. The turnout was of less than 50%, which means more than 50% of Italians no longer feel represented by their government and its policies.
Do arm supplies to Ukraine threaten European security? Do all Italians support sending weapons?
Your second question pertained to what I think about the loss of sovereignty and of the ever-growing influence of the United States over Italy and the other European countries. Unfortunately, this did not come about just recently, but is the result of a process started in 1945 and which has been threatening Western Europe ever since.
NATO has in fact installed in several countries, including Italy and Germany, nuclear bases and weapons of different kinds, up to nuclear ones.
In Italy (our audience might be aware of this) there are several US nuclear weapons. What for? No one is asking that and our media won’t report on this.
You can only get this information thanks to the targeted research done by people who want to know the truth, whereas you will remain in the dark watching our national TV and reading mainstream news.
The Italian political system is without a shadow of doubt doing the bidding of the United States. Even the Five Star Movement at first seemed a breath of fresh air with regards to their stance against the United States, as several of their representatives who are now in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, were all for exiting NATO, shutting down their bases in Italy and shipping back American armaments.
Once in power, however, some of these people broke all the promises made and betrayed all their original ideals, pledging unconditional allegiance to the US (with complete trust in their policies) and to the North American Treaty.
To be honest, most Italians are tired. I’m not referring to those actively and politically aligned with forces such as the Democratic Party, who few weeks ago brought some Ukrainian Banderites to the Parliament in order to point an accusing finger at Russia and the USSR.
I’m referring to the common people who have had enough of all this, especially of the gas situation. The US is selling liquefied gas to Europe and Italy at a higher price, causing the cost of living to become unbearable.
Many people are thus beginning to see who is really behind all their problems and they just want to free themselves from the tight leash of Washington.
Ukraine is actively blackmailing Europe with help, both military and financial. Do you think it’s worth giving Ukraine support these ways?
Who needs Ukraine in the European Union? Answer: nobody, probably not even Ukrainians themselves, let alone Italians and other Europeans.
This is yet another political move on the part of the European Commission, who alone calls the shots for Europe.
The European Parliament by statute only holds a consultative role and does not deliberate on anything except a few matters over which the Commission is not competent. Ukraine’s entry in the EU and NATO is therefore another anti-Russia move, as was NATO’s enlargement to the Baltic States, Poland, Bulgaria and Romania.
There was absolutely no tactical or strategic reason behind this and it couldn’t have been a response to any threat made by Russia to Europe or to the West. It was simply an anti-Russia move that had as a goal that of spreading even more hatred against Russia and Russians. The EU has done this for decades.
In my view, we are in front of a clear political scheme designed by the European leadership: the continuous identification of an external threat (Russia) and the conditioning of the masses through films, books and political statements, as to make Russia appear as the villain to be blamed for everything.
This is my analysis about how the European Union operates. The process which will see Ukraine in the EU is only the continuation of this kind of politics.
The goal? To hinder Russia, to poke the bear so that they respond with an attack, thus have one more reason to deem them a threat.
This is what Europe, under orders from the US, is engaging in.
People can see what will come of the entry of Ukraine in the European Union. Their money will be used to rebuild Ukraine and to finance a Neo-Nazi political system that glorifies Stepan Bandera, his acolytes, and organizations such as the Ukrainian nationalists (OUN), who we all know what they are capable of.
I do historical research and I strive to educate people about this, but in Europe and in Italy there are universities, schools, and other organizations that for a political return are embracing historical revisionism, going as far as to claim that Bandera was not an anti-Semi and that he did not collaborate with the Third Reich.
We’ve reached a point in which some Italian journalists stated, live on TV, that the Azov battalion isn’t Neo-Nazi and that no form of discrimination ever took place in Ukraine.
It’s not without concern that I’m telling you this. I live here, my wife is Russian and my daughter is also a Russian citizen.
How can I, as a European, sleep at night when a country like Ukraine is part of the EU and such extremists can come and go as they please? Many of them are already here and in many European countries they have physically attacked citizens.
It’s so hard for me to keep living in Europe without fearing repercussions, considering what I do to spread awareness. This is all very concerning. Many Europeans like me are on my same wavelength, if anything for simple economic reasons, as they are sick and tired of seeing their taxes used to rebuild Ukraine and to fund those political forces in Ukraine that led to 2014 and to the special military operation in 2022.
This is the current social and political climate.
On the one hand, let me stress this again, there is the political interest of those who want to push their agenda, that slew of people, including renowned journalists, who are making a living out of this and have all the interest in supporting this false narrative. On the other, we have the common people who can’t afford to pay hundreds of euros every month for electricity, gas and fuel.
These people are suffering at the hands of their political leaders and they know it. Many are beginning to realise how the real enemy of Italy and Europe is not to be found in Russia, but rather at the other shore of the Atlantic Ocean.
Nazism Versus Marble: Monuments Destroyed in Ukraine
Europeans, suffering a Russophobic frenzy, destroy and dismantle monuments to Soviet soldiers-liberators. Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, and Estonia have all announced new plans to destroy memorials.
The trend originated in Ukraine, where monuments to soldiers, poets, generals and Holocaust victims have been destroyed in every possible way over the past year.
In April 2015, the Ukrainian Parliament – the Verkhovna Rada – passed a package of laws including one that allowed for the demolition of monuments to the Soviet past.
Lenin Again: The First Wave
The first wave of the fight against historical monuments was the so-called “Lenin’s fall” or “Leninfall” of 2013-2017. Radicals, actively supported by the new Kiev regime, demolished memorials to the leader of the world proletariat en masse. They destroyed architectural complexes and busts in virtually every city and village in the central, western, and northern parts of the country. To a lesser extent, the wave of denial of historical memory affected settlements in southeastern Ukraine.
According to public statistics, there were 5,500 memorials to Lenin in Ukraine in 1991. In August 2017, the Kiev authorities reported that within the decommunization policy, not a single monument to the organizer of the October Revolution remained in the country (not counting territories outside of Kiev’s control). The Ukrainian media presented the news with a special pathos.
No Need For Suvorov
A monument to Alexander Suvorov in Kiev also fell under the decommunization law: the authorities deemed it “an element of Soviet propaganda” in Ukraine. Until 2018, the bronze figure of the great Russian commander stood at the front of the Kiev Suvorov Military School: then it was fenced off and moved to the backyard.
The monument was later moved to the Poltava Museum of Long-Range and Strategic Aviation, where it was completely dismantled in February 2022.
Tragedy of the Monument to Soviet Union’s Military Glory in Lvov
Radical activists raised the issue of at least partially dismantling the Monument of Glory, a monument to Soviet soldiers in Lvov, back in 2007. They demanded the dismantling of “imperial-Bolshevik symbols”.
In April 2016, deputies of the Lvov City Council from the faction of the Ukrainian Galician Party appealed to the mayor with a petition requesting that the memorial complex be dismantled as it was not in conformity with the decommunization law. The adoption of an official decision was delayed. On 16 February 2018, nationalists from Right Sector*, the OUN Volunteer Battalion*, and Sokol destroyed the plates on the monument with sledgehammers.
The vandals also knocked down the iron inscription which read “To the Victors over Nazism” and in its place wrote “Monument to the Occupiers” in white paint.
The Monument to the War Glory of the Soviet Army was erected in Lvov’s Central Park of Culture and Recreation in 1970. It represented an ensemble of a 30-meter stele, a massive wall with figures of Red Army soldiers and two central sculptures symbolizing the soldier and the Motherland.
Technically, the monument did not fall under the law on so-called decommunization but no one in the Lvov administration was interested in this, and local officials decided to destroy the “occupation monument”.
Lvov was liberated from the Nazis in July 1944. Archival photographs testify that the city welcomed the Red Army soldiers as heroes. 75 years later, the descendants of those who once gave flowers to the Soviet soldiers decided to demolish the Monument of Glory.
They started with the 30-meter stele. The Lvov authorities stated that it was in an emergency condition. They managed to demolish the “emergency” structure only on the third attempt. On 2 February 2019, five high reliefs installed in honor of Soviet soldiers were removed from the stele and transferred to the “Territory of Terror” museum. On 3 March, the stele itself was destroyed.
The city “celebrated” the 77th anniversary of Lvov’s liberation from the Nazis by completely destroying the monument to fallen soldiers in the Great Patriotic War. The last two figures of the memorial, the Soviet soldier and the Motherland, have disappeared from the Hill of Glory.
Prince Vladimir’s Cross
Kiev has outlawed not only political but also religious architectural symbols. On 25 May 2014, the monument to Vladimir the Great, the Baptizer of the Kievan Rus’, was desecrated on the embankment near Poshtova Square in Kiev. The cross, which was in the hands of the Holy Equal of the Apostles and Great Prince Vladimir, was smashed to pieces. The canonical community of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church perceived this act of vandalism as a direct threat and a harbinger of a religious war with it. The perpetrators were never found.
Another sculpture of the Baptizer of the Kievan Rus’ also got in trouble. The monument to Vladimir the Great is the oldest sculptural monument in Kiev. It was built in 1853 and is considered one of the unofficial symbols of the city. In March 2017, unidentified perpetrators spilled red paint on the figure of Prince Vladimir.
‘Monument to Hungarian Chauvinism’
It was not only monuments related to Russia that were unwanted: any monument that did not correspond to the “correct” history of Ukraine could be targeted. On the night of 11 March 2014, in the Transcarpathian region, extremists threw paint on a memorial to the Hungarian tribes’ crossing through the Carpathians to the Danube valley, which was erected on the Veretski Pass.
Vandals wrote on the northern side of the architectural complex: “Budapest, repent for Carpathian Ukraine!” and on the western side – “Glory to Ukraine!” Furthermore, the monument was sprayed with blue-and-yellow swastikas and the Ukrainian coat of arms.
The Hungarian community still managed to defend the memorial, which was erected on the territory where they historically lived. Nevertheless, a year earlier, a local deputy of the right-wing Svoboda radical party Ostap Stahiv called for help in destroying the “monument to Hungarian chauvinism” in Transcarpathia.
‘Unwanted’ Huta Pieniacka
In January 2017, Ukrainian neoNazis desecrated a memorial to the victims of the SS-Volunteer Division “Galicia” in the village of Huta Pieniacka in Lvov. This once large village was burned to the ground during the 1944 Volyn Massacre (the massacres of Poles in Volhynia and Eastern Galicia), when Ukrainian nationalists massacred the Polish population of Galicia. Vandals destroyed the memorial cross, painted the columns the colors of the Ukrainian and neoNazi flags, and drew two lightning bolts, a runic symbol of the SS. The perpetrators were never found.
NeoNazis desecrated memorials not only in their own country but also beyond its borders. In November 2021, radicals from Ukraine damaged the monument to Marshal Pilsudski and the Polish Legions’ War Memorial. Jozef Pilsudski was a statesman and political leader, a founder of the Polish Army and the first head of the Polish Republic. The vandals left their favorite “Wolfsangel” on the pedestal of the statue of Pilsudski, and painted the legionnaires’ figures in yellow-and-blue.
As a farewell, the intruders left a misspelled note in Ukrainian: “Pol’sa ne tilki dlya paniv” (“Poland is not only for the gentlemen” – ed. note Sputnik). In Ukrainian, Poland is spelled with a “sh” – “Pol’sha”.
The Holocaust and Anti-Semitic Campaigns
Architectural symbols linked to the history of Ukrainian Jews and the Holocaust have been targets of radical attacks no less frequently than memorials to Soviet heritage.
On the night of 9 April 2014, unidentified perpetrators painted a swastika and a neoNazi “Wolfsangel” on a monument to Holocaust victims in Odessa. The same night, dozens of gravestones on Jewish graves in the local cemetery were desecrated. The perpetrators were never found.
In January 2022, vandals destroyed a monument to Holocaust victims in Lysychansk (a city in Lugansk region, at the time located in Kiev-controlled territory. – ed. note Sputnik). Moreover, this was the second attack on the memorial “To the Jewish victims killed during the Nazi occupation of Lysychansk in 1942-1943″. The city administration published the following message on its official Facebook page (the activity of Meta, Facebook and Instagram social networks, is outlawed in Russia as extremist):
At the start of December last year, this very memorial sign had already been destroyed. At the expense of indifferent citizens of the city a new memorial sign was made and installed. It is noteworthy that this happened on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, celebrated by the entire international community on January 27.
A similar crime was committed in the city of Dnepr. On 28 January 2022, unidentified perpetrators broke lamps at the monument to Holocaust victims installed in Gagarin Park, and the memorial itself was doused with paint. Igor Romanov, executive director of the Union of Jewish Religious Communities and Organizations of the Dniepropetrovsk Region, noted that there were no cameras in the park and that previous desecrations of the memorials had gone unpunished:
This is not the first time this has happened. As a rule, it is either timed to coincide with Jewish holidays or, like yesterday, when there was a mourning date, the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. I think this was instigated to coincide with that date.
In 2019, unidentified perpetrators drew a swastika on a monument to Yiddish Jewish author Sholem Aleichem in Kiev.
We did not even list all the cases of desecration and destruction of monuments. One may get the impression that Ukrainian neoNazis are trying to destroy everything that does not fit into their “new history” and national idea. However, the new ideology cannot be imposed on everyone, and to every action, there is always an equal reaction.
In June 2019, unidentified perpetrators splattered paint on a monument to the UPA* in the Youth Park in Kharkov. The criminal liability for “hooliganism” of the Criminal Code of Ukraine provides for a penalty of up to five years in prison, but even this does not stop those who are against the glorification of the Nazis in their hometown.
The monument to the dead UPA members* was erected in October 1992, and since, activists have tried to demolish it more than 100 times. The city authorities have repeatedly repaired the damage, ignoring the obvious reluctance of Kharkov citizens to honor Nazi accomplices in the park.
The national hero of independent Ukraine – Stepan Bandera – was not spared the love as well. A monument to the leader of the OUN* and one of the founders of the UPA was unveiled in October 2007 in Lvov. In August 2019, unidentified perpetrators drew a hammer and sickle on its pedestal.
In February 2021, the monument was doused with paint, one of the students caught on charges of vandalism was sentenced to four years in prison with probation for two years, but he was later paroled.
A similar monument to the collaborator, erected in Ternopol in 2008, was also doused with paint in mid-December 2021.
A week later, an unidentified person threw eggs at the monument. This was the last straw for the radical nationalists, who called for the monument to be protected.
A few days after the egg attack, Bogdan Butkovsky, a deputy of the Ternopil Regional Council, said:
A joint squad, in particular, of police officers and soldiers of the Ternopil Battalion will guard the pedestal. Stepan Andreevich is under heavy round-the-clock guard! Nobody can spoil our holidays! (Stepan Bandera’s birthday is celebrated in Ukraine on January 1 every year since 2019. – ed. note Sputnik).
In comments to the publication, users ridiculed the authorities’ decision: “Afraid he’ll run away?”, “Protecting a monument to a ‘hero’ from people’s love?”, “Afraid he’ll go for strawberries [to Poland], too?” More often than not, commentators asked why authorities had to erect a monument that then had to be guarded at all, and why not just remove it if it causes so much irritation with the residents?
It seems that the Kiev regime simply refuses to accept the fact that some citizens will never accept the Nazification of their country. Despite all the efforts of the Euromaidan supporters who came to power, there are still those in Ukraine who do not consider their nation superior to others. Those who have not forgotten the great feat of the multinational Soviet people, who gave a joint response to fascism. Those for whom Bandera, Shukhevich and other renegade collaborators will never become heroes. And there are many such people in Ukraine.
*extremist organizations banned in Russia.