Monday May 5, 2014
Between the east and west of the Ukraine lies a historical highway, paved in unspeakable barbarism and blood. To the west it traverses the blood soaked black earth of the Ukrainian breadbasket where Stalin’s most heinous crime was committed–the savage liquidation of several million independent and enterprising peasants known as Kulaks. To the east it tracks the scorched earth route of Hitler’s Wehrmacht on its way to Stalingrad and the most barbaric military assault ever launched on the civilian population of a major city.
And along this path of misery and carnage there are even more remainders of historic atrocities and resultant motives of revenge. The west of the Ukraine gave rise to the pro-Nazi fifth column of Stepan Bandera and his legions of collaborators. The latter joined Hitler’s campaign to exterminate Stalingrad and murdered hundreds of thousands of Jews and Poles while at the main business of killing the hated Russians.
But in the east the Russian population has its own reasons to deeply fear the Ukrainian nationalist coup in Kiev. And its not just because the latter immediately tried to abolish Russian as an official language and not even because the easterners have memories of the Banderite/Ukrainian complicity in Hitler’s assault on the motherland. Nor is it even because of outrageous provocations like that of the the braided lady, Ms. Tymoshenko, who emerged from prison at the time of the coup averring that 8 million Russian speaking citizens of her country “should be nuked”.