By Cynthia Chung
In the history of civilization, Politics has more often than not, been a matter reduceable to the question of “whose side are you on?”
Granted it is not an easy affair to discern what most-nearly approaches truth in the fog of “the present.” Hindsight is 20/20 they say, although that is also not entirely true, for the interpretation of history is just another battlefield, albeit in much slower motion.
In a world of increased division, where we are told there is only black or white, the best we mere “civilians” can hope for is to not get hit by the crossfire. However, that is becoming increasingly harder to do.
It is not a matter of holding “opinion” any longer, it is about upholding a “conviction,” not earned with your own personal scrutiny and research, but by your “faith” in such a conviction and the authorities who shape it.
Increasingly, it does not truly matter what the “facts” are, but the question of “whose side are you on?”
If that is what “reality” has been reduced to by those forces controlling the state, then any enemy to those forces controlling that state will be a villain, regardless of their actions, regardless of their ideology; and any ally to those forces controlling that state will be a hero, regardless of their actions, regardless of their ideology.
And thus, in our shaped reality of today, what makes a “Hero” or a “Villain” will be determined by the simple question “whose side are you on?”
If this is troubling to you, I suggest we do a little exercise together. Let us dare to discern the “facts” for ourselves. Only then, will we cease being mere cheerleaders for a team; only then, can we qualify ourselves to ask in all honest sincerity, “whose side are we truly on?”
Are Nazis Now the New “Good Guys”?
There is a bit of mixed messaging that has been going on, especially in the last few weeks. Are there significant numbers of Nazis in Ukraine and are these “bad” or “good” Nazis in the context that they are fighting the Russian “invaders”?
In one breath we hear the counter, how can there be Nazis in Ukraine when there is a Jewish President calling the shots? In another breath we hear Facebook is now allowing users to praise the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion while they are fighting Russians. In yet another breath we hear, well its complicated, Ukrainian Nationalism should be considered at the forefront of any debate, even if it overlaps with Nazi ideology.
On Feb. 27, 2022, Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland held a scarf bearing the slogan “Slava Ukraini,” meaning “Glory to Ukraine,” with the “Blood and Soil” colors of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) (who collaborated with the Nazis during WWII and massacred thousands of Jews and Poles).
She then proceeded to post this picture onto her Twitter account (replacing it hours later with a picture of her without the “Blood and Soil” scarf) and accused her detractors of “reeking of Russian disinformation”. This controversial picture of Freeland was reported by Canada’s National Post.
According to Freeland’s press secretary, this was just another case of a “classic KGB disinformation smear… accusing Ukrainians and Ukrainian-Canadians of being far right extremists or fascists or Nazis,” which is a confusing statement on multiple levels.
It is not clear how this is a case of “Russian disinformation,” since the picture is indeed authentic, Freeland does not deny this. And she is indeed holding a “Blood and Soil” emblem, which originated with the Nazis, clear for everyone to see. Lastly, it is confusing as to why the Canadian government seems to be unaware that the KGB no longer exists. Are they also under the impression that the Soviet Union still exists?
Not irrelevant in all of this is the fact that Freeland’s grandfather was the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper during WWII in Galacia and that she is indeed aware of this and apparently unapologetic. Whenever she is questioned about this, she does not deny anything, but simply blames such a focus of inquiry on Russian disinformation with the intent to “destabilize Western democracies.” That is, it is not a question of what is one’s historical or ideological background, but a question of “whose side are you on?”
Interestingly, it was the Canadian newspaper “The Globe and Mail” who reported this story, titled “Freeland knew her grandfather was editor of Nazi newspaper,” thus, not a Russian publication last time I checked. And upon whom did they base such information? None other than Freeland’s own uncle, John-Paul Himka, who is now professor emeritus at the University of Alberta.
According to the Globe and Mail, Freeland was aware for more than two decades that her grandfather Michael Chomiak, was the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper that vilified Jews and supported the Nazi cause.
Globe and Mail writes:
“Krakivski Visti [Krakow News] was set up in 1940 by the German army and supervised by German intelligence officer Emil Gassert. Its printing presses and offices were confiscated by the Germans from a Jewish publisher, who was later murdered at the Belzec concentration camp.
The article titled ‘Kravivski Visti and the Jews, 1943: A contribution of Ukrainian Jewish Relations during the Second World War’ was written by Ms. Freeland’s uncle, John-Paul Himka, now professor emeritus at the University of Alberta.
In the foreword to the article, Prof. Himka credits Ms. Freeland for ‘pointing out problems and clarifications.’ Ms. Freeland has never acknowledged that her grandfather was a Nazi collaborator and suggested on Monday that the allegation was part of a Russian disinformation campaign.
In 1996, Prof. Himka wrote about Mr. Chomiak’s work for Kravivski Visti, a Ukrainian-language newspaper based in Krakow that often published anti-Jewish diatribes including ‘certain passages in some of the articles that expressed approval of what the Nazis were doing to the Jews.’” [emphasis added]
Oddly, Freeland helped to edit and clarify Prof. Himka’s article discussing her grandfather as the chief editor of a Nazi newspaper, however, refused to acknowledge her grandfather’s role publicly and accused any reference to this as part of a “Russian disinformation campaign.” According to this topsy-turvy logic, Freeland’s uncle, Prof. Himka is part of this “Russian disinformation campaign,” and she is guilty of providing assistance to this “Russian disinformation campaign,” all to ruin her political career and “destabilize Western democracies.”
Freeland also told her uncle, Prof. Himka, which is included in his article, that according to her father, her grandfather Michael Chomiak was also working to some extent with the anti-Nazi resistance. However, Prof. Himka was unable to verify this information, which he described as “fragmentary and one-sided.”
Then there is the strange case of NATO tweeting in celebration of international women’s day, this past March 8, a picture of a female Ukrainian soldier wearing the Black Sun symbol which is tied to Nazi occultism, and Satanism. NATO wrote in their post “All women and girls must live free and equal,” sending a very mixed message. NATO also ended up taking down their picture of the Black Sun symbol.
The timing of Freeland and NATO’s twitter posts are most strange. It also begs the question, why post something at all if you are just going to delete it? Is this just a matter of not being aware of such things, or is it a matter of certain groupings getting increasingly bolder and unapologetic as to where their true allegiance lies? Has Chrystia Freeland or NATO undergone any real questioning or backlash for such public displays? Not really.
On Feb. 7, 2014, a leaked conversation between Victoria Nuland (then Assistant Secretary of State) and Geoffrey Pyatt (then U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine) spread like wildfire. It was exposed that after Yanukovych was ousted from government, it was the government of the United States that was caught selecting the membership of what would form the new government of Ukraine, as if they were building their own sport’s team.
This was not only controversial in of itself, it was especially controversial in context of Ukraine’s “Revolution of Dignity,” where many Ukrainians died tragically so that they could have a better future.
Here in the West, we are supposed to be most sympathetic to that cause. So why did hardly anybody call out the fact that the U.S. government very clearly formed a Ukrainian government of their own choosing without a thought for the future and well-being of the Ukrainian people?
In fact, it was the U.S. who largely encouraged and financially supported the Ukrainian revolution. According to the official Obama White House Archives:
“The United States stands with the Ukrainian people and their choice of democracy, reform, and European integration.
In pursuit of these objectives, Vice President Joe Biden announced today in Kyiv, Ukraine that, pending approval from Congress, the White House will commit $20 million to support comprehensive reform in the Ukrainian law enforcement and justice sectors, including prosecutorial and anti-corruption reforms…the U.S. government has now committed nearly $320 million in assistance to Ukraine this year, in addition to the $1 billion sovereign loan guarantee issued in May 2014.”
Many U.S. politicians visited Ukraine during this time to support the Ukrainian cause for “dignity.”
John McCain visits Ukraine in December 2013 in support of a regime change.
The world should have been appalled and horrified at such an exposure of U.S. criminality and duplicity. That the U.S. had directly and loudly encouraged and financially supported a revolution that resulted in many tragic deaths, only to steal the Ukrainian people’s right to choose their own government democratically.
The Americans also encouraged the Ukrainian people to fight for the EU Deal. And the Ukrainian people received the EU Deal that they were literally dying for. Where are they today? The poorest country in all of Europe.
Ukraine used to be among the richest countries in Eastern Europe, known as “the breadbasket of Europe.” However, this economic fact is harder and harder to come by since Ukraine was a part of the USSR when their economy was at its peak. A most inconvenient truth. It is for this reason that you will be hard pressed to find any GDP graph of Ukraine that begins earlier than 1991, the date of their independence. From 1991 to 1997, Ukraine lost 60% of their GDP (1) and suffered five-digit inflation rates. (2) Who was Ukraine beholden to during this massive recession that has never really ended for Ukrainians? The International Monetary Fund (IMF). [More on this story in Part 2.]
However, certain individuals who have held and continue to hold political offices, have greatly benefited from the plight of Ukraine.
On January 23, 2018, Joe Biden was invited to speak at a Council on Foreign Relations platform about an article he co-authored with Michael Carpenter titled “How to Stand Up to the Kremlin: Defending Democracy Against Its Enemies.”
Incredibly, during this discussion on “defending democracy against its enemies,” Biden publicly bragged that in 2016 (while Vice-President of the United States) he would only deliver on the U.S. loan guarantees to Ukraine for economic aid on the condition that Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin was fired. Shokin was investigating corruption charges involving Burisma Holdings at the time. Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden was on the board of this natural gas company during this period and was allegedly the recipient of $3-$3.5 million from the company. An extraordinary amount that could not be justified, hence the investigation into corruption.
Joe Biden makes the following admission at this 2018 CFR platform:
“…and I went over I guess the 12th, 13th time to Kiev, and I was going supposed to announce that there was another billion dollar loan guarantee. And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko [then President of Ukraine] and from Yatsenyuk [then Prime Minister of Ukraine] that they would take action against the state prosecutor [Shokin] and they didn’t. So they said they had it [the loan] they were walking out to press and I said nah, I said I’m not going or we’re not going to give you the billion dollars. They said ‘you have no authority, you’re not the president, the president said,’ I said call him. [laughter in background] I said, I’m telling you’re not getting a billion dollars. I said you’re not getting a billion and I’m gonna be leaving here. I think it was about six hours. I looked I said I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Oh son of a b*tch. He got fired. [laughter in background] And they put in place, someone who was solid.”
Apparently, Joe Biden (the current President of the United States) is not concerned with true democracy but only about whether his team wins. Not the American people I might add. His team is much smaller and more “selective” than that.
Strangely, despite Biden’s admission being recorded at a very public and “prestigious” platform, fact-checkers have continued to deny any proof that Joe Biden was responsible for the firing of Shokin. Apparently, Biden’s own admission to this is irrelevant. Fact-checkers have also denied any hard proof that Hunter received such a lofty sum from Burisma. Well, it is pretty hard to come by hard proof when the investigation into such a thing was prematurely shutdown, don’t you think? That was the whole point.
This is extremely controversial for another reason. During the EU Deal dispute that was used to trigger the Ukrainian protests, it has since been discovered that part of the conditions of this “deal,” which was strong-armed by the IMF, was the demand that a significant rise in utility rates (first and foremost electricity and gas) be implemented while the income of Ukrainians stayed the same.
Who was Ukrainian President Yanukovych’s point person in the United States during the Ukrainian protests and EU Deal controversy? U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.
The Ukrainian people had no idea. The very deal they were fighting and dying for was to directly benefit corrupt gas companies such as Burisma Holdings and their foreign shareholders, to the economic detriment of the Ukrainian people. A similar situation to what most of Europe is facing today under a plethora of glorious “EU Deals” in the midst of an energy crisis.
In addition, the New York Times has just recently published an article confirming that the notorious Hunter Biden laptop that was claimed as “Russian disinformation” by our trustworthy fact-checkers, is in actual fact, AUTHENTIC. A very important piece of information that should have been made available to the American people before they chose who would be their next President. This important piece of information was denied to the American people by the very thing that is proclaimed to be defending “national security,” the unelected and anonymous but all powerful, “fact-checkers.”
So, we all know Joe Biden has been promoted, um “elected,” President. Where are Victoria Nuland and Geoffrey Pyatt today? Nuland serves as the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs of the United States. Pyatt serves as the U.S. Ambassador to Greece.
Nuland, not one to shy away from unflattering spotlight, has again made headlines. This time on the American – starts with “bio” ends with “lab” – situation in Ukraine. On March 7, Nuland testified in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee where she did not deny that Ukraine possesses “chemical or biological weapons” and acknowledged on public record that “uh, Ukraine has, uh, biological research facilities.”
But don’t worry, this does not mean that the omnipotent god-like “fact-checkers” are actually the sources of disinformation (what Hunter Biden laptop?), but as Mrs. Nuland has patiently explained to us; the harbouring and experimentation on deadly organisms is called “biological research” when the U.S. Department of Defense is involved. Thus, they are not deemed as “bio labs,” but rather as “biological research facilities,” and anyone who calls them “bio labs” while under the possession of the United States is a propagator of Russian disinformation. And yes, the U.S. Department of Defense is most certainly involved as seen by the saved PDF files taken off of the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine website which shows the U.S. Department of Defense as the donor in all the cases listed. However, as Mrs. Nuland carefully explained, as soon as the Americans lose possession of these deadly organisms, it is only then that they transform into “bio labs” with “weapons of mass destruction.” It is very simple actually.
What did not make the headlines with equal vigour is what Nuland did after her failed diplomatic visit to Russia this past October, which was according to French journalist Thierry Meyssan, to “impose” Yarosh onto President Zelensky. On Nov. 2, 2021, President Zelensky appointed Dmytro Yarosh (leader of the Right Sector 2013-2015) as Adviser to the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Valerii Zaluzhnyi. Nuland is of Ukrainian Jewish descent, thus her ongoing support for neo-Nazis in the Ukrainian government and military since 2014 is disturbing on multiple levels.
Right Sector has close connections with Trident (Tryzub) and Patriot of Ukraine. All three groups are right-wing nationalist, neo-Nazi, paramilitary movements as well as political parties. Look it up for yourself, not even Wikipedia is denying this. Yarosh was the leader of Tryzub starting in 2005. Tryzub led to the formation of the Right Sector, to which Yarosh was also leader of between 2013-2015 and continues to have a great deal of influence on all these groupings.
Dmytro Yarosh has been on Interpol’s “wanted list” since 2014.
Recall that in 2014, the U.S. “influence” on the newly formed Ukrainian government was raising concern, specifically around members of Svoboda and Pravyi Sector (Right Sector) holding five senior roles in the new government, including the post of deputy prime minister. This story was reported by Reuters.
Right Sector “Blood and Soil” flag. What westerners are told is a Ukrainian nationalist party concerned with defending the liberty and freedom of the Ukrainian people.
Svoboda is also sold to the west as a romantic movement of benign Ukrainian nationalists, who happen to support Stephen Bandera and cannot deny that they support ethnic ultranationalist views.
Typical rally during the “Revolution for Dignity” in 2014, with flags from the Svoboda Ukrainian Nationalist Party.
On January 1st, 2022, hundreds of Ukrainian nationalists held a torchlight march in the capital of Kyiv, seen in the above picture, to mark the birthday of Stephen Bandera one of the leaders of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) and its paramilitary unit the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) who fought alongside the Nazis during WWII and massacred thousands of Jews and Poles. These Ukrainian nationalists are shown in the above picture holding the Svoboda and UPA “Blood and Soil” flag. The latter being the same emblem Chrystia Freeland held this past February. This event was reported by The Times of Israel. I wonder, will Freeland’s press secretary dare to call this another classic case of “KGB disinformation”?
A Moment to Reflect
So what is going on here? Are there real Nazis in Ukraine that are being selected, with U.S. and possibly NATO backing, to play a political and military role? And if so, why? What is happening to the Ukrainian people if this is in fact the case?
What even constitutes as “Ukrainian” under an increasingly ultra-nationalist movement? An ultra-nationalist movement which self-identifies as pure ethnic Ukrainians. Ukraine is an ethnically mixed population, with both ethnic Ukrainians and ethnic Russians living together.
In light of this situation, how are we to regard the people of Donbass asking to form their own republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, separate from the rest of Ukraine? Are we in the west going to deny the people of Donbass, with a large population of ethnic Russians, the right to separate themselves from an ultra-nationalist movement that self-identifies as a pure Ukrainian race?
How are we to regard Crimea’s own request to re-join Russia in 2014, a referendum that the West refuses to acknowledge actually happened, despite mainstream western reporters confirming that Crimeans have indeed chosen and are happy to have returned to Russia? (Crimeans mostly consist of ethnic Russians.)
What are we to think of the Ukrainian government withholding 85% of drinkable water to Crimea these past eight years? An action by the Ukrainian government that constitutes a humanitarian crisis against the Crimean people. Are these the actions of a friendly government that cares for the welfare of the Crimean people?
This humanitarian crisis was corrected by the Russians as soon as they entered Ukraine, as acknowledged by Reuters. However, most in the west will never hear anything about this.
We should have the courage to ask ourselves: Is there in fact a civil war that has been going on in Ukraine not just these past weeks, but these past eight years? A civil war that has not been reported to the western people for political reasons, where certain regions of Ukraine have been under attack by neo-Nazi paramilitary units who have been receiving political support and funding from the United States, and possibly NATO.
Why would the west support such a horrific initiative?
To answer these questions, we will have to have the courage to look at the historical root of Ukrainian Nationalism and its relationship to namely U.S. Intelligence and NATO post-WWII.
To follow shortly, “Part II of Fact Checking the Fact Checkers: The Truth Behind Ukraine’s Glorified ‘Nationalist Movement’”
Originally published on Strategic Culture Foundation. The author can be reached at cynthiachung.substack.com
(1) “Can Ukraine Avert a Financial Meltdown?“. World Bank. June 1998. Archived from the original on 12 July 2000.
(2) Figliuoli, Lorenzo; Lissovolik, Bogdan (31 August 2002). “The IMF and Ukraine: What Really Happened“. International Monetary Fund.
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