Why is Hate Not Hope Turning a Blind Eye to anti-Semitism and the Integration of neo-Nazis into the Ukrainian State?

Why is Hate Not Hope Turning a Blind Eye to anti-Semitism and the Integration of neo-Nazis into the Ukrainian State?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Why is Hate Not Hope Turning a Blind Eye to anti-Semitism and the Integration of neo-Nazis into the Ukrainian State?

During the Corbyn Era Hate not Hope saw anti-Semitism everywhere but today they ignore it repeating NATO Propaganda About Zelensky Being Jewish

On 29th March Nick Lowles from Hate not Hope wrote to me saying that ‘it’s never been more important to take action against fascism and make it clear to everyone where you stand.’ Nick then tried to sell me their merchandise ‘so that you can wear your anti-fascism with pride.’ Naturally I was interested until Lowles told me how he was ‘particularly excited’ about their clothes which read ‘They shall not pass’ in Ukrainian.

Oh dear I thought. Poor Nick’s got it wrong again. No Pasaran was the slogan of the Spanish Republicans not Franco. Does Nick really think that the neo-Nazi Azov and Adair Battalions, C14, Right Sector and the rest are anti-fascists? Does Nick not know that the Wolfsangel, the badge of Azov, was the insignia of the Waffen SS Das Reich Division? It seems that years of supporting Apartheid Israel whilst accusing its opponents of ‘anti-Semitism’ have finally caused Nick to lose his political bearings if not his marbles.

Being a concerned and kindly soul I penned Nick a note to try and help him regain his political balance.

Nick, I hope you are referring to the neo-Nazi armed Azov militia, Right Sector and C14 who have been armed and funded by the US, Israel and UK among others. It would be a new low for Hate not Hope to be backing neo-Nazis but I wouldn’t put it past you given your support of Apartheid Israel

Two days later Nick’s underling Jayde replied. Jayde reassured me that ‘We wholeheartedly oppose the Azov Regiment’. That was certainly a relief as I had begun to wonder whether neo-Nazis too were not part of the fight against ‘anti-Semitism’.

Things then went downhill as Jayde  informed me that ‘Putin’s claims that he is ‘denazifying’ Ukraine is both incorrect and offensive.’ And then I heard the familiar NATO trope that ‘Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is Jewish and lost family members in the Holocaust.’

Whenever Zionists want to exonerate Jewish racists and fascists they tell us that these people had relatives who died in the Holocaust.  However if they are attacking Jewish anti-Zionists for ‘anti-Semitism’ then there is never a mention about our relatives. Strange that.


‘Ukraine – What is Really Happening?’ – Gonzalo Lira | Real Talk with Zuby

You may recall that whenever that tax-dodging supporter of Apartheid South Africa, Margaret Hodge, opened her big mouth the media rushed to assure us that she had lost relatives in the Holocaust. As if that justified her breaking the Boycott of South Africa.

Was Jayde saying that losing relatives in the Holocaust prevents you from collaborating with neo-Nazis? Why? Zionists have a long history of collaboration with anti-Semites, Holocaust or no Holocaust.

The Ukrainian Police demanded details of all Jews in Kolomiya in order to investigate ‘ethnic’ crime. Israel and the ADL had nothing to say as they are more concerned with ‘anti-Semitic’ criticism of Israel.

I doubt if there is a single Ukrainian Jew who has not lost relatives in the Holocaust. Some 1.5 million Ukrainian Jews, the reservoir of European Jewry, died in the Holocaust. Indeed most British Jews had relatives who died in the Holocaust, my father’s family included.

Think of all those Jews in Israel who chant ‘Death to the Arabs’ just as Polish and German anti-Semites used to chant ‘Death to the Jews’. Many of them will have lost relatives in the Holocaust but that has not stopped them becoming Judeo-Nazis.

There is no law that says the victims of racism will not become racists themselves. Israel is a good example. Priti Patel is another example.

Then it got worse. Jayde informed me that despite Ukrainian Jews ‘facing antisemitism that all Jewish populations sadly receive’ it had, after the fall of the Soviet Union, ‘become a thriving community with freedoms and protections written in law.’

Russian POWS being tortured

It appears that Hate not Hope have become apologists for Ukrainian anti-Semitism. I wondered how this squared with the views of the leader of Ukrainian Jews, Eduard Dolinsky, who described Ukraine as the most anti-Semitic country in Europe after Poland:

Our government encourages nationalistic groups. Our government encourages glorification of Nazi collaborator mass murderers and murderers of Jews.

Literally there are hundreds of monuments, streets named after killers of Jews. You can’t imagine in the West… a monument to a policeman who was escorting Jews to Nazi death camps…. We have anti-Semitic incidents every day – vandalism on Holocaust mass graves, vandalism on Jewish monuments. … No one was ever convicted. They always deny the issue.

And then Jayde entered the realm of fantasy. He told me that the size of the Azov Regiment was around 900 out of a total army of nearly 200,000 not including nearly a million reservists.

What Jayde didn’t mention was that the Azov Battalion, which is part of the Ukrainian armed forces, commands a force of 60,000 in Mariupol alone. It is clear that this army has imbibed Azov’s neo-Nazi views much as an infant imbibes its mother’s milk.

Jayde informed me that ‘The current misuse of anti-fascism by Putin regime is nothing new’ yet this is exactly what Hate not Hope are doing.  By associating the slogan They Shall Not Pass (No Pasaran) with the Ukrainian army Nick Lowles was koshering Ukraine’s neo-Nazi brigades.

HnH was to the fore of the false anti-Semitism campaign.  They called people like Chris Williamson, a principled opponent of racism, an ‘anti-Semite’ whilst holding hands with all manner of vile Zionists, including their Board member, the execrable Ruth Smeeth, who was responsible for the political lynching of Marc Wadsworth.

HnH is a good example of the pitfalls of bourgeois anti-fascism. HnH came from the stable of Searchlight Magazine under Gerry Gable. For years Searchlight traded information with the British and Israeli states. They passed information on the left to Special Branch and MI5 in exchange for information on the fascists, see Searchlight ‘anti-fascist magazine joins forces with Labour’s ‘anti-Semitism’ witchhunt

HnH split from Searchlight of which Lowles had been Editor. The split was not about any political differences or principles but about money and the fact that Gable was a hindrance to Lowles ambitions. See The Death Agony of Searchlight Anti-Fascist Magazine.

HnH sees capitalist democracy as an ideal to be defended at all costs. It sees the state as neutral rather than an instrument of class oppression. This leads them into support for western imperialism and Israel. In short HnH like Searchlight before it supports capitalism and its exploitation of the working class. Hence their relationship with MI5/Special Branch. To them the Police aren’t the sharp end of capitalist oppression but the force that keeps democracy on the road.

HnH fails to see that in certain situations like Ukraine today, western capitalism utilises fascist and neo-Nazi groups in order to defend its interests. The West has funded, armed and trained the Azov Battalion and other fascist groups in Ukraine. Instead HnH play down the threat and use the ‘Jewish’ President Zelensky as a cover for what is becoming the Nazification of the Ukrainian state.

Bourgeois anti-fascism in other words ends up supporting the very capitalist system that in crisis turns to fascism. Hitler did not come to power via elections. He was put into power by the military and industrialists. In July 1932 the Nazis obtained 13.75m votes (37.3%) compared to 13.2m (35.9%) for the Workers Parties (SPD/KPD). In November 1932 the Nazi vote fell to 11.74m (33.1%) whilst the vote for the SPD/KPD stayed the same 13.2m (37.3%). It was this, the weakening of the Nazi vote which cause the German capitalists to propel Hitler into the position of Chancellorship.

Western ‘democracy’ had no hesitation in supporting the vilest of fascist dictators such as Pinochet in Chile and Videla in Argentina. There is nothing inherently democratic about capitalism. Bourgeois democracy rests on economic dictatorship. When the needs of capitalism dictate, democracy is ditched. That is what has been happening in Ukraine for the past 8 years.

Today Ukraine is not, contrary to Western propaganda a democratic state. It has banned all opposition media and all left-wing parties. With neo-Nazis having been integrated into the armed forces Ukraine has all the trappings of a semi-fascist police state. It is this that HnH with its bourgeois anti-fascism is defending.

Tony Greenstein 

Dear Jayde,

Thank you for your email of 31 March. I confess that I am surprised by your complacency regarding the role neo-Nazi militias are playing in Ukraine. You seem to be a victim of NATO’s black propaganda and disinformation war.

I am no more concerned with Putin’s rhetoric about deNazification than Biden’s claims that the United States stands for freedom and democracy. Lying comes easily to our rulers. What concerns me is the fact that the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion [AB] and other fascist groups have become integrated into Ukraine’s police and security forces. As Kharkiv’s Human Rights Protection Group observed ‘Far-right vigilantes imposing ‘Ukrainian order’ are strange partners for Ukraine’s National Police.’

A March 2018 report stated that “C14 and Kiev’s city government recently signed an agreement allowing C14 to establish a ‘municipal guard’ to patrol the streets.” This gave them state sanction to carry out pogroms against the Roma and led to a “purge” of Romani from Kiev’s railway station in collaboration with the Kiev police.

Roma tied up in Ukraine

Ukrainian neo-Nazi have engaged in horrifying attacks on Roma, all with the connivance of the Ukrainian police. In Lvov, it was the Ukraine Armed Forces who were responsible for taping Roma women and children to a pole.

Ukraine is the world’s only state to have absorbed a neo-Nazi militia into its military. The AB was initially formed out of the neo-Nazi Patriot of Ukraine. Andriy Biletsky, who became their commander, once wrote that Ukraine’s mission is to “lead the White Races of the world in a final crusade…against the Semite-led Untermenschen.” Biletsky was a deputy in Ukraine’s parliament.

In the autumn of 2014, the AB was incorporated into Ukraine’s National Guard. Because of Ukraine’s importance in NATO’s geo-political strategy, neo-Nazism is now being made respectable. A host of pro-NATO and Zionist organisations such as the Anti-Defamation League [ADL] are actively whitewashing them.

Bandera’s militia massacred 100,000 Poles in Eastern Ukraine

The historical roots of Ukrainian neo-Nazism

In an interview with Andrew Srulevitch, ADL Director of European Affairs, Professor David Fishman exonerated the Ukrainian Insurgent Army [UPA] and its leader Stepan Bandera, who were responsible for the slaughter of 300,000 Jews and Poles. Asked about torchlit marches in Kyiv with red and black flags, Fishman had this to say:

“For Ukrainian nationalists, UPA and Bandera are symbols of the Ukrainian fight for Ukrainian independence. The UPA allied with Nazi Germany against the Soviet Union for tactical – not ideological – reasons…. When Ukrainian nationalists and Jews look at those red and black flags, we see two different things.’

Anti-Defamation League Newsletter Interview with Zionist Prof. David Shipman sanitising Ukraine’s neo-Nazis

In fact UPA attacks on Jews were so ferocious that Jews sought the protection of the Germans. The Banderite bands and the local nationalists raided every night, decimating the Jews,” a survivor testified in 1948. “Jews sheltered in the camps where Germans were stationed, fearing an attack by Banderites. Some German soldiers were brought to protect the camps and thereby also the Jews.”

ADL, which purports to oppose anti-Semitism, carried the interview with Fishman on its website and in its newsletter. Zionist organisations, which are usually so concerned about ‘anti-Semitism’ when it comes to Palestine, have echoed NATO propaganda. As Electronic Intifada’s Ali Abunimah observed:

Fishman’s excuse that Bandera and other Nazi collaborators are “symbols” of the “fight for Ukrainian independence” mirrors the claims from American white supremacists that their display of the Confederate battle flag is merely to honor their “heritage” and not to celebrate a regime that went to war to protect its “right” to enslave people from Africa.

Dozens of Ukrainian streets are named after Bandera and in a particularly nice touch Bandera’s street runs right up to the site of Babi Yar.

Ukraine is the only country in the world to have a national holiday in memory of a Nazi collaborator, Stepan Bandera. The Times of Israel described how Hundreds of Ukrainian nationalists march in honor of Nazi collaborator.

Daniel Lazare, in a review of Grzegorz Rossoliński-Liebe’s Stepan Bandera: The Life and Afterlife of a Ukrainian Nationalist wrote:

Although Bandera and his followers would later try to paint the alliance with the Third Reich as no more than “tactical,” an attempt to pit one totalitarian state against another, it was in fact deep-rooted and ideological. Bandera envisioned the Ukraine as a classic one-party state with himself in the role of führer, or providnyk, and expected that a new Ukraine would take its place under the Nazi umbrella, much as Jozef Tiso’s new fascist regime had in Slovakia or Ante Pavelić’s in Croatia.

What we are seeing is a cynical attempt to rewrite history in order to portray Bandera and the OUN/UPA as mere Ukrainian nationalists. Why? Because NATO’s Ukrainian friends identify with Bandera’s alliance with Nazi Germany. Bandera saw things differently explaining that Ukrainian nationalism had taken shape “in a spirit similar to the National Socialist ideas”.

The ADL has long experience in this kind of thing. It was previously engaged in spying on anti-apartheid activists and the left on behalf South Africa’s secret police, BOSS. In 1993 it paid $178,000 to activists who had been targeted by its spy Roy Bullock. See ADL’s Spy Ring.

That the BBC and the yellow press is engaged in trying to prettify the AB and assorted neo-Nazis is one thing (see Ros Atkin’s apologia What untruths is Russia spreading about Nazis in Ukraine?) but for a self-proclaimed anti-fascist organisation to do the same is something else.

As Jimmy Dore observed, there are now good Nazis as well as bad Nazis. The good ones are pro-Western and publicly, at least, play down their anti-Semitism.

Although you don’t deny that the AB is a neo-Nazi group you minimise its size, suggesting that it only consists of 900 members, 0.5% of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. [AFU] This suggests that you either do not appreciate the scale of the Nazification of the AFU or that you are playing it down for political reasons.

According to Ruslan Leviev, an analyst with the Conflict Intelligence Team, it is estimated that there are ‘several thousand’ members of the Azov Battalion. However even this is likely to be an underestimate. Azov are in charge of 60,000 troops in Mariupol, one-third of the Ukrainian armed forces.

According to Reuter’s in addition to 145,000 army personnel there are 102,000 paramilitaries, including foreign mercenaries. Far-right groups are heavily concentrated in them. Who can doubt that those under AB’s command, those in Mariupol have become indoctrinated into its far-Right ideology?

An example of Azov’s handiwork was the body of a woman found in the basement of Azov’s HQ in Mariupol. She had been tortured and a swastika was scratched into her chest. For which Western media blamed Russians.

Oleksiy Kuzmenko’s Far-Right Group Made Its Home in Ukraine’s Major Western Military Training Hub [George Washington University, September 2021] makes for sombre reading. Kuzmenko wrote that:

…  since 2018, the National Army Academy (NAA), Ukraine’s premier military education institution and a major hub for Western military assistance to the country, has been home to Centuria, a self-described order of “European traditionalist” military officers that has the stated goals of reshaping the country’s military along right-wing ideological lines and defending the “cultural and ethnic identity” of European peoples against “Brussels’ politicos and bureaucrats.” The group envisions a future where “European right forces are consolidated and national traditionalism is established as the disciplining ideological basis for the European peoples.”

The group, led by individuals with ties to Ukraine’s …  Azov movement, has attracted multiple members, including current and former officer cadets of the NAA now serving in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Apparent members have appeared in photos giving Nazi salutes and made seemingly extremist statements online.

The group has been able to proselytize Ukraine’s future military elite inside the NAA. Apparent members have also gained access to Western military education and training Institutions.

The presence of the far right within the NAA and AFU is alarming because that institution is central to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Western support for that country, and Western military presence there. Foreign military instructors routinely engage with the Academy’s cadets at both the Academy proper and the International Peacekeeping and Security Center it oversees….

Azov figures and groups linked to Azov also heaped praise on Centuria and shared its messages online. In January 2019, for example, Eduard Yurchenko, an ideologue of the Azov movement, praised the group on Telegram, where he now has more than 1,100 subscribers. “You should know that this is our legendary future growing,” Yurchenko wrote of Centuria, emphasizing that the group was holding events within the NAA. …

Galician Youth, a group that is linked to the Azov movement and operates in the Western part of Ukraine, similarly shared Centuria propaganda on Telegram in 2019.

In May 2021, the United Jewish Community of Ukraine… accused Galician Youth of spreading anti-Semitic posters in Lviv. The group denied having any connection to anti-Semitic posters and stated that it condemned anti-Semitism and xenophobia. Belying these statements, however, Galician Youth events, patches, etc., feature white nationalist symbols.

The evidence is overwhelming that the AFU is being penetrated at all levels by neo-Nazi groups.

HnH, which never lost an opportunity to attack anti-racists like Chris Williamson for ‘anti-Semitism’, goes out of its way to downplay genuine anti-Semitism in Ukraine. HnH even withdrew an award to Joe Solo for having supported Chris, though it ended up with egg their your faces. You wrote that:

Ukraine’s contemporary Jewish community, while facing antisemitism that all Jewish populations sadly receive, has, in the post-communist era, become a thriving community in the country with freedoms and protections written in law.

Eduard Dolinsky, the leader of Ukraine’s Jewish community clearly disagrees:

Our government encourages nationalistic groups. Our government encourages glorification of Nazi collaborator mass murderers and murderers of Jews.

Literally there are hundreds of monuments, streets named after killers of Jews. You can’t imagine in the West… a monument to a policeman who was escorting Jews to Nazi death camps…. We have anti-Semitic incidents every day – vandalism on Holocaust mass graves, vandalism on Jewish monuments. … No one was ever convicted. They always deny the issue.

Zelensky’s Alliance with Ukraine’s Neo-Nazis

You wrote that ‘Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is Jewish and lost family members in the Holocaust.’ As Lev Golinkin wrote in The Forward ‘Ukraine Is Teeming With Anti-Semitism. It Just Elected A Jewish President.’

Zelensky is a puppet of Ukraine’s fascists who came to power thanks to patronage from Ukrainian oligarch, Ihor Kolomoisky. Kolomoisky also funds the AB and other far-right militias.

In 2019 Zelensky met with a range of fascist groups telling reporters “I met with veterans yesterday. Everyone was there – the National Corps, Azov, and everyone else.” A few seats away from Zelensky was Yehven Karas, leader of the neo-Nazi C14 gang.

In 2019, Zelensky defended Ukrainian footballer Roman Zolzulya against Spanish fans taunting him as a “Nazi.” Zolzulya had posed beside photos of Stepan Bandera and openly supported the AB. Zelensky, described Zolzulya as “not only a cool football player but a true patriot.”

Last April Zelensky attempted to appoint the neo-Nazi former head of the Right Sector in Odessa, Serhiy Sternenko as head of Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU). As the former head of the neo-Nazi Right Sector in Odessa, Sternenko was directly implicated in the 2014 Trade Unions House massacre of 46 people.

In November 2021 Dmytro Yarosh, announced that he had been appointed as an advisor to the Commander-in-Chief of the AFU. Yarosh led the Right Sector from 2013-2015, vowing to lead the “de-Russification” of Ukraine.

A month later, as war with Russia drew closer, Zelensky awarded Right Sector commander Dmytro Kotsyubaylo the “Hero of Ukraine” commendation. Kosyubaylo keeps a pet wolf in his frontline base, and likes to joke to visiting reporters that his fighters “feed it the bones of Russian-speaking children.”

On March 1, Zelensky replaced the regional administrator of Odessa with Maksym Marchenko, a former commander of the extreme right Aidar Battalion, which has been accused of an array of war crimes in the Donbas.

Zelensky’s recent visit to Greece backfired dramatically in a country which was occupied during WWII.

Zelensky’s address cut away to broadcast two members of the AB. Both said that they were of Greek heritage. It brought outrage in Greece. “Nazis Return to Parliament — Thanks to Mitsotakis” ran one headline referring to the fact that it is only recently that Greece has managed to drive out its own neo-nazis.

What HnH is doing is repeating one of NATO’s favourite canards. Because Zelensky is Jewish we can safely ignore the Nazification of the Ukrainian state. It is a favourite prop of the West’s propagandists as this video demonstrates.

Zelensky is Jewish – NATO talking point

Until recently Zelensky downplayed his Jewishness joking that “The fact that I am Jewish barely makes 20 in my long list of faults,” Now however it is of enormous propaganda importance.

Zelensky’s Jewishness is being used in order to justify the rehabilitation of Ukraine’s neo-Nazi groups and HnH is part of this effort. On December 16 2021 when the UN General Assembly passed a resolution on “Combating Glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices’ 130 countries voted in favour with only two against – the Ukraine and the United States!

In 2016 the United States lifted a ban on funding neo-Nazi Ukrainian militia. Although the ban was reimposed two years later it has since been ignored. Not only the USA but Britain and Israel too have supplied the fascists with weapons.

Shlomo Avineiri called it an ‘embarrassing episode’. Petliura’s nationalist mobs and army killed 100,000 Jews but this did not stop Jabotinsky’s troops fighting alongside him. In 2009 Kyiv renamed Comintern Street Symon Petliura Street.

Bandera’s hands were even bloodier than Petliura’s, who at least, according to some accounts, made some efforts to stop the pogroms. Bandera’s Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists [OUN] got their first taste of Jewish blood at Babi Yar, the ravine just outside Kiev where over 33,000 Jews were killed in just 2 days, 29-30 September 1941. It was the first big Nazi massacre.

Zelensky has banned 11 left-wing groups including the Opposition Platform for Life, which with 44 seats is the biggest opposition party in parliament. Given that the Communist Party of Ukraine is already banned we can see a pattern. It is noticeable that no nationalist or fascist groups have been banned. Banning left-wing parties was one of Hitler’s first acts.

Finally I want to address your comment that Zelensky has relatives who died in the Holocaust. So what? I doubt if there is a single Jew in Ukraine whose relatives didn’t die in the Holocaust. There must be few Jews anywhere in Europe whose relatives didn’t die in the Holocaust. No doubt ÉricZemmour, the defeated Jewish fascist who stood for election in France also had relatives who died in the Holocaust. That hasn’t stopped him being an anti-Semite.

This lazy repetition of the mass media’s sound bites suggests that HnH is deliberately minimising the strength of neo-Nazis in Ukraine. In the process you are exploiting the memory of the dead of the Holocaust. There is a word for that – anti-Semitism. Israeli leaders, such as Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir, had relatives who died in the Holocaust but that did not stop them murdering thousands of Palestinians. In the case of Shamir it didn’t stop him, as leader of the Stern Gang, twice offering the Nazis a military pact in 1941. What matters is what you do now. Zelensky has got into bed with Ukraine’s neo-Nazis.

Regards,

Tony Greenstein

Who Was Stepan Bandera? – Daniel Lazare

Who are Ukraine’s far-right Azov regiment?

Vigilante punishment spreads in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Zelensky deepens alliance with far right

Who are Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Battalion?

Far-right vigilantes imposing ‘Ukrainian order’ are strange partners for Ukraine’s National Police

How Ukraine’s Jewish president Zelensky made peace with neo-Nazi paramilitaries on front lines of war with Russia

Ukraine: Apparent POW Abuse Would Be War Crime

Ukrainian President Zelensky deepens alliance with far right

Was bombing of Mariupol theater staged by Ukrainian Azov extremists to trigger NATO intervention?

Zelensky, the Azov Battalion and the Greek parliament

Correspondence between Tony Greenstein and Hate not Hope

Nick Lowles

[email protected]                                                               Tue, 29 Mar, 16:18

Subject: Re: ‘They shall not pass’ in Ukrainian 

Hi Tony,

With everything that’s going on in the world, it’s never been more important to take action against fascism and make it clear to everyone where you stand.

That’s why HOPE not hate produces a range of merchandise from clothing, bags, badges, water bottles and much more – so that you can wear your anti-fascism with pride in all aspects of your life.

I’m particularly excited about our new t-shirt and hoody, steeped in antifascist history, which reads ‘They shall not pass’ in Ukrainian.

From: Tony Greenstein <[email protected]>
Date: Tuesday, 29 March 2022 at 16:23
To: signup <[email protected]>

I hope you are referring to the neo-Nazi armed Azov militia, Right Sector and C14 who have been armed and funded by the US, Israel and UK among others.

It would be a new low for Hate not Hope to be backing neo-Nazis but I wouldn’t put it past you given your support of Apartheid Israel

Tony Greenstein

signup                                                                 31 Mar 2022, 11:01

Hi Tony, thank you so much for your message.

The Azov Regiment is a neo-nazi paramilitary organisation that is now a unit of the National Guard of Ukraine which has been active since 2014. The regiment has received widespread support from the global white supremacist movement and at times attracted foreign fighters. We wholeheartedly oppose the Azov Regiment and completely condemn any support or aid for the regiment.

However, despite the existence of this neo-nazi regiment, Putin’s claims that he is ‘denazifying’ Ukraine is both incorrect and offensive. Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is Jewish and lost family members in the Holocaust. Ukraine’s contemporary Jewish community, while facing antisemitism that all Jewish populations sadly receive, has, in the post-communist era, become a thriving community in the country with freedoms and protections written in law.

Estimates place the size of the Azov Regiment around 900 soldiers. While this remains unacceptable, the Ukrainian military had roughly 196,600 active military personnel at the start of the invasion and could call on 900,000 reservists when hostilities began, making the Azov regiment a tiny fraction of the Ukranian fighting force.

Anti-fascism was instrumentalised by the Eastern Bloc regimes during Cold War in order to justify their agenda of ‘social reorganisation’. It has been called ‘antifascism as total ideology’. The current misuse of anti-fascism by Putin regime is nothing new.

It is possible to wholeheartedly condemn the Azov Battalian and any support for it within Ukraine or anywhere else, while also rejecting Putin’s false denazification claims being used to justify his illegal and unjustifiable war against the Ukranian people.

You might also be interested to read our recent blog about the far right in Ukraine https://hopenothate.org.uk/2022/02/24/the-far-right-wrestles-with-ukraine  and our podcast on the same subject https://hopenothate.org.uk/podcast/radio-43-episode-31-intelligence-report-the-ghosts-of-fascism-in-russias-war-on-ukraine

Best wishes,

Jayde

Posted by Tony Greenstein at 21:14

 

 

 

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