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Tue Mar 4, 2014, 02:51 AM

Fears of Anti-Semitism Spread in Ukraine

Fears of Anti-Semitism Spread in Ukraine
March 3, 2014 - 11:39am | admin
By Konrad Putzier

Could Europe witness its first pogrom against Jews since the 1940s? As Ukraine inches closer to civil war, the country’s Jewish population is growing anxious. Late last month, a Kiev rabbi made headlines when he urged his co-religionists to leave the country. A Ukrainian-born member of the U.S. Jewish advocacy group UJA Federation recently told me that his organization is monitoring the situation in Ukraine with great concern.

Cause for the anxiety is the rise of the Right Sector, a nationalist militant group crucial to President Viktor Yanukovych’s overthrow that now appears to hold great sway over the fragile Ukrainian government. Some members of the Right Sector are overt anti-Semites. Isolated beatings of Jews around Kiev’s independence square have already been reported. This weekend, the Right Sector called for its members to mobilize against a Russian intervention. The prospect of an armed, anti-Semitic mob in a largely lawless country should give everyone cause for alarm.

To Westerners, fighting for freedom and attacking Jews seem like an anachronism. But anti-Semitism has always existed alongside the Ukrainian independence movement. Throughout the 20th century, every uprising or civil war in Ukraine was accompanied by mass murder of Jews. The parallels to today are disturbing.

The first violent struggle for Ukrainian independence took place during the Russian civil war between 1918 and 1920. Following the collapse of the Tsarist Empire, Ukrainian nationalists declared an independent Ukraine, and tried to defend it against the Red Army and White troops. Anti-Semitism was widespread at the time, and all warring parties on the territory of today’s Ukraine committed pogroms. But the nationalists of the Ukrainian Directorate were especially brutal.

more: http://www.worldpolicy.org/blog/2014/03/03/fears-anti-semitism-spread-ukraine


Is anyone else finding the irony/hypocrisy in some of the remarks of recent, "amusing?"

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Reply Fears of Anti-Semitism Spread in Ukraine (Original post)
Behind the Aegis Mar 2014 OP
11cents Mar 2014 #1
Behind the Aegis Mar 2014 #2
11cents Mar 2014 #3
Behind the Aegis Mar 2014 #4
11cents Mar 2014 #5
Mosby Mar 2014 #6
Mosby Mar 2014 #7

Response to Behind the Aegis (Original post)

Tue Mar 4, 2014, 04:25 PM

1. That "Kiev rabbi" who advised Jews to leave Ukraine

...was in fact a Chabad rabbi, and Chabad is -- absolutely disgustingly -- hand-in-glove with the Putin regime, using Putin's support and muscle in its attempt to assert control over Russian/ex-Soviet Jewish communities. Note that as soon as Yanukovych fled he backtracked, no doubt because he noticed that he was temporarily cut off from big daddy.

So one has to pay attention to where the alarms are coming from. If they're coming from Chabad, you're hearing Russian regime propaganda.

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Response to 11cents (Reply #1)

Tue Mar 4, 2014, 05:16 PM

2. So all is well?

I am aware of the various alliances and your post exemplifies some of the propaganda that is occurring in regards to anti-Semitism.

ETA: We are being played as pawns by both sides, as well as the supporters (or at least non-detractors) of both sides. Ukraine does not have the best history with Jews as seen in the article. I am already seeing increased remarks about the Jews being behind the revolution, the ousting of the president, propagating Russian propaganda, and pitting each side against the other by playing the middle.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #2)

Tue Mar 4, 2014, 05:35 PM

3. That edit came just in time.

Because your original post made me pretty mad.

I'm Jewish, and I'm reasonably well-informed. I didn't say that "all is well" -- moreover, no Jew with my background (which is likely similar to yours) will ever assume that "all is well" for Jews in Ukraine. The whole part of the world gives me the creeps.

What I said was that the specific rabbi that your article cites, and whose inflammatory comment was widely quoted, is in fact a Chabadnik. In the ex-Soviet context, Chabad = Putin. It really is a shameful alliance, and one that's dangerous to all Jews in the region.

What is fact -- not propaganda -- is that Jews in Ukraine, the ones who are actually at risk, have generally been pro-Maidan. The Putin regime -- a Russian regime, and there's no f*cking reason on earth to think that a Russian regime cares about Jews -- is simultaneously telling the world that Maidan is entirely Nazi, while saying internally that Maidan is a Jewish (and gay!) conspiracy. Now that's propaganda.

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Response to 11cents (Reply #3)

Tue Mar 4, 2014, 05:59 PM

4. I edited when I realized you didn't just "happen" upon this group.

There are some who don't respect our group, and I was being overprotective and curt. I apologize. I meant to change the title too. Ooops.

I agree with your fact about the Jews in Ukraine, with one small exception. Jews who are seen as supporting Russia are also at risk because the prevailing party will blame them as the "bad Jews," just as those supporting the revolution are "bad Jews" to the Russian propaganda machine.

You picked up on the "gay" conspiracy too?! LOL! I was just writing about that in another post. It seems some of the strangest people are now suddenly worried about gay civil liberties and anti-Semitism, when in the past they have a horrific record of homophobia (or not giving a shit) and anti-Semitism (or not giving a shit). I know Yahoo! is never a good example, but some of those people are easily tracked and seeing comments they have made on other articles show their concern is false, just as it in other forums, including DU. I don't limit it to comments either, I include many of the articles coming out on certain sites saying "won't somebody think of the Jews?!" and it strikes me as duplicitous and disingenuous.

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Reply #4)

Tue Mar 4, 2014, 07:57 PM

5. Thanks for your apology.

Under the circumstances, I understand why you mistook my intention.

If there's anything good that comes out of the current situation, it's that observant people are getting a clear view of how the bad faith and maliciousness of the Right and the "anti-imperialist," "anti-Zionist" far Left track together, and in fact are practically indistinguishable. Both are suckholes of antisemitism, and I've seen how easily some supposed leftists have kissed off any concern for gay rights in Russia. The fact that anyone here still cites RT as respectable "alternative media" is mind-boggling.

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Response to 11cents (Reply #1)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 02:12 PM

6. Chabad and the Russians have been fighting for decades over the Schneerson collection.

Since when did they become best buds?

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Response to Behind the Aegis (Original post)

Wed Mar 5, 2014, 07:15 PM

7. Ukraine's Chief Rabbi Refutes Putin's Anti-Semitic Charges

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his supporters in Russia and the West have accused the Ukrainian opposition that led the fight against the criminal Yanukovych regime and the democratic Ukrainian government that succeeded that regime of being fascist, neo-Nazi, and anti-Semitic.

The following quotations—by Putin and his most unremitting academic supporter in New York City on the one hand, and by three of Ukraine’s leading Jewish officials on the other—should settle the issue. Putin is beyond redemption, of course, but Professor Cohen may want to take account of the evidence and, like a good revisionist historian, revise his views.

Vladimir Putin, president of the Russian Federation, March 4, 2014:

Armed and masked militants are still roaming the streets of Kiev…. We see the rampage of reactionary forces, nationalist and anti-Semitic forces going on in certain parts of Ukraine, including Kiev…. [W]e understand what worries the citizens of Ukraine, both Russian and Ukrainian, and the Russian-speaking population in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine. It is this uncontrolled crime that worries them.

Yaakov Dov Bleich, chief rabbi of Ukraine, March 3, 2014:

Rabbi Yaakov Dov Bleich, a chief rabbi of Ukraine, accused Russia of staging anti-Semitic “provocations” in Crimea in order to justify its invasion of the former Soviet republic. At a press conference in the Manhattan office of the United Jewish Communities of Eastern Europe, Bleich compared Russia’s behavior to that of the Nazis prior to the Anschluss invasion of Austria in 1938.

"Things may be done by Russians dressing up as Ukrainian nationalists,” he said, adding that it’s “the same way the Nazis did when they wanted to go into Austria and created provocations.”

Bleich, a vice president of the World Jewish Congress, also announced the creation of an aid effort, KievRelief.org, to fund security for synagogues and mosques and to provide humanitarian relief for all Ukrainians. Bleich, who moved to Ukraine in 1989 from Brooklyn, was slated, along with other Ukrainian political and religious leaders, to meet with Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday. He said he will urge Kerry to be assertive with Russian President Vladimir Putin, to move the G8 Summit to Kiev, as a show of solidarity with Ukrainians, and to consider sending military support to Ukraine. While acknowledging that Americans are “war-weary,” he said Ukrainians need “boots on the ground to protect democracy” and to prevent “the cold war from getting hot.” Asked about anti-Semitism among Ukrainian nationalists, particularly two far-right parties that have been included in the new government, Bleich acknowledged concerns but said the Jewish community has received assurances from top government leaders that their safety will be protected.

“The Russians are blowing this way, way out of proportion,” he said, referring to the issue of anti-Semitism among some Ukrainian nationalist factions. He said that Ukrainians were united in response to the Russian intervention. “There were many differences of opinion throughout the revolution, but today all that is gone,” he said. “We’re faced by an outside threat called Russia. It’s brought everyone together."

Rabbi Misha Kapustin, rabbi of the Simferopol Reform Synagogue Ner Tamid, Crimea, March 3, 2014:

Many here are against the Russians but are afraid to talk. I am a Ukrainian citizen and want to live in democratic Ukraine. The government has always provided protection for the Jews, and all the talk of anti-Semitism is exaggerated. The Russians have invaded illegally and that must be opposed. So far, people have encouraged me and I don’t believe my petition will cause any harm to the Jews.


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