The slain Ukrainian editor Oles Buzina loved his country but Kiev nonetheless labels him an "Ukrainophobe".
This article originally appeared at The Blog Mire
The Ukrainian Security Services Chief Investigator, Vasily Vovk, has just added another phobia to the growing list of fears or hatreds that you or I might apparently suffer from. Speaking on the charmingly named programme, Svoboda Slova (Freedom of Speech), Vovk was asked to comment on the recent spate of “suicides” and murders of opposition politicians and government-critical journalists that have taken place in his country. This was his response:
“I think that in our time, when there is practically a war going on, Ukrainophobes, if they don’t shut their mouths, should at least stop their rhetoric. I think that in the present situation, there shouldn’t be anyone stepping out directly against Ukraine and Ukrainianness.”
So much for Svoboda Slova! Mr Vovk was then asked if he had a specific scientific or legal definition of a “Ukrainophobe,” to which he replied,
“No. But everyone knows what we are talking about.”
Well yes they probably do, if they’ve been paying attention to the creeping totalitarianism that is becoming the norm in his country, that is.
So what is Ukrainophobia? Well, the funny thing is that you don’t even have to actually hate Ukraine or Ukrainians to qualify as a Ukrainophobe. In fact, bizarre as it might seem, you can even succumb to this condition if you love the country.
Take the recently murdered writer and historian, Oles Buzina, as a case in point. Mr Buzina was one of the “Ukrainophobes” Mr Vovk was talking about when he gave his impassioned defence of Svoboda Slova. But far from having a fear or hatred of Ukraine, Mr Buzina in fact seems rather to have loved it. And yet he still qualified as a Ukrainophobe. How is this possible?
Simply because his understanding of events and vision for the country was diametrically opposed to the understanding of events and vision of the country that is permitted by the post-revolution regime. Here’s Mr Buzina in the last interview he gave to Radio Vesti, just days before he was killed:
“Why do I participate in Russian talk shows? Because for me this is the only opportunity to express my views. On Russian talk shows I always say that I support a united Ukraine. For instance, once there was a situation where one of the talk show guests said that the Ukraine as a state does not exist, at which point I took out my Ukrainian passport and said—’look, the Ukraine does exist as a state.'”
You might think that this would mark him out as a Ukrainophile, rather than a Ukrainophobe, but alas no. His vision for a united Ukraine was the wrong one, you see, as seen in statements like this:
“The ‘real’ Ukraine is in large measure dependent on economic ties with Russia.”
“Not all Ukrainians are under the influence of Ukrainian propaganda, which is not Ukrainian, but anti-Ukrainian, and it is developed in the US…”
So you see how he could be a patriotic Ukrainian supporting a united Ukraine, yet still be marked out as a Ukrainophobe because his understanding of what this means is unacceptable to the ones defining Ukrainophobia?
This being the case, how does one know if one is a Ukrainophobe? Since, as Mr Vovk says, there is not yet an objective test for Ukrianophobia, could it be that you might be a Ukrainophobe without even knowing it? It is eminently possible, and so in the absence of a scientific measurement, here is a little test by which you can tell if you might have succumbed to this latest of phobias:
1. Col. Andriy Lysenko, announces the 40th invasion of Ukraine by Russia. This is followed a week later by an announcement from NATO General Philip Breedlove of the 41st invasion. Do you:
- a) Trust them – they’re just honest guys trying to disseminate the facts about the Kremlin’s plans to take over the whole of Ukraine, followed by Europe and then the World
- b) Roll your eyes in your head and find yourself muttering, “I can’t wait to see the satellite photos of this one.”
2. What is your opinion of Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s plans to build the 1,300 mile Great Wall of Ukraine on the border with Russia?
- a) I think it needs to be higher
- b) Speaking of borders, Mr Yatsenyuk clearly crossed one some time ago – the borderline between reality and insanity that is
3. Dmytro Yarosh, leader of the Pravy Sektor, has just been brought in as an adviser to the Ukrainian Army’s Chief of Staff. Your reaction is:
- a) I’m pleased for him. At last he’s got some well earned recognition for his efforts
- b) I can hardly believe that a European country is legitimising neo-Nazis like Yarosh and that the “enlightened” West appears not to have noticed
4. The Verkovhna Rada just unanimously passed a law which calls those in the Ukrainian Insurgent Army who massacred tens of thousands of Poles, Jews and Russians in the 1940s “freedom fighters”. What is your response:
- a) “Glory to the Heroes”
- b) Yet another indication of the sickness at the heart of the post-Maidan regime
5. Another mass brawl takes place in the Verkhovna Rada. Your immediate reaction is:
- a) Of course democracy in Ukraine is not yet perfect, but it just goes to show that the West needs to be giving more money in order to help them reach their “democratic aspirations”
- b) Please!!! These guys don’t need the West to lend them money to help them realise their “democratic aspirations.” They need the West to lend them the money to buy a cage
6. Ukrainian miners are in Kiev protesting to the government about the non-payment of their wages. They should:
- a) Be protesting against Putin instead, since the Kremlin midget has clearly personally tampered with the payment system to make sure their wages won’t be paid
- b) Pray that the monumentally incompetent and corrupt government in Kiev will soon be kicked out peacefully, and something resembling a real and sensible government installed in its place
7. The 10th “suicide” of an opposition politician in the space of two months takes place. Do you:
- a) Shrug your shoulders. Probably another Ukrainophobe who should have shut their mouth
- b) Shake your head in disbelief that the creepy and totalitarian authorities in Ukraine are being sold in the West as apostles of “democracy”
8. US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt puts out another Tweet showing another alleged invasion of Ukraine by Russia. The picture he uses is a grainy aerial photo of what look like some little dots and smudges, but closer inspection reveals it to be a satellite photo of US APC’s taken during Operation Desert Storm. Do you:
- a) Say, “Hey, people do make mistakes,” before going off to tell your friends that the Russians are coming
- b) Say, “How is it actually possible that this clown ever got let into Ukraine, let alone given the keys to the US Embassy?”
9. You see the front cover of Elle magazine in your local newsagents, with a picture of a model wearing an orange and black dress. Do you:
- a) Throw the magazine on the floor, stamping on it and raging about how Putin has now managed to takeover even the fashion world, before storming out of the shop shouting at the owner that he is a Kremlin stooge
- b) Think nothing of it and carry on with your shopping
10. You pick up a copy of the New York Times and read an article about Russian plans to invade Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, and Poland, followed by New York. Although there is no evidence presented at any point in the article to substantiate the claims, you:
- a) Believe every word and start building an underground bunker to protect yourselves from the imminent invasion by the Ruskies
- b) Use the article to make a paper boat for your children
Now total them up. If you scored “A” for every question, congratulations, there is not an ounce of Ukrainophobia about you. You are a Ukrainophile through and through, trusting the Ukrainian government and the Western media implicitly to report truthfully on events in that country. However, a word of warning: Don’t rest on your laurels; Doubts about the official narrative can creep in at any time and if you are not careful, before you know it you could wake up and find that you have become a fully-fledged Ukrainophobe.
If you scored anything other than “A” for every question, shame on you. You have fallen hook line and sinker for the propaganda being poured out by the Kremlin and you are officially a Ukrainophobe. In the words of Vasily Vovk, you really ought to shut your mouth.