Мое возвращение на работу в Донбасс!

Грэм Филлипс

Последние 2 месяца я был в Лондоне, очень хорошо провел время в городе, в котором жил и работал 10 лет. Проводил время с семьей, друзьями, дважды был на стадионе Уэмбли, ездил по Лондону, смотрел любимые шоу – Английский-шоу, и мне очень нравятся Давай Поженимся!

Graham and dad

Я готов вернуться на работу в Донбасс, где с августа 2014 по февраль 2015 я провел долгие 6 с половиной месяцев до моего возвращения в Лондон в марте.

Подал документы на визу в Российскую федерацию. Я планирую быть в Москве на 9 мая, отметить и снять на видео День Победы, а затем прямо на Донбасс и в Донецк, мой шлем, бронежилет и рабочее оборудование там, срочно возвращаюсь к работе.

Я поеду на своей машине Ровер 75, полной гуманитарной помощью для Донбасса, собранной в Лондоне. До этого я 3 раза ездил на Украину и через Украину. На этот раз я буду ехать на Донбасс через Россию. В 2014 году меня дважды депортировали из Украины, по единственной причине – я распространял новости неудобные для киевского правительства. По этой же причине в июле 2014 года меня объявили “персоной нон-грата” в Украине
на 3 года.

Я не считаю запрет на въезд в Украину для меня действительным, поскольку мне не были выданы официальные документы и в паспорте не была поставлена Oles Buzina“отметка о неблагонадежности”. Киевские власти несколько раз меняли причину, по которой меня выслали из Украины – все они были ерундой.

Тем не менее, я отдаю себе отчет в сложившейся ситуации на Украине. Беззаконное государство, где оппозиционеров выслеживают и убивают, как недавно был убит выступавший против войны журналист Олесь Бузина.

Учитывая степень настроенности против меня на Украине по причине моих репортажей о событиях на Донбассе и несогласие с этим правительства Киева, нет сомнений в том, что любая поездка на Украину будет самоубийством.

Я не согласен с государственной политикой Киева – репрессии, которые равноценны терроризму на государственном уровне, с помощью которой они Graham at work1хотят одержать победу. Я намерен продолжить работу на Донбассе. Ни один другой западный корреспондент не сообщал новости оттуда раньше или больше, чем я. Я очень рад что возвращаюсь на работу на Донбасс на следующей неделе!

Независимо от того с какой бы стороны не освещала “про-Евромайданнная” Украина мои отношения с Российским государством или консульством, они являются отношениями нормального британского гражданина с Российским государством. Я обращаюсь за получением визы с соответствующими документами, фотографиями паспорта, и надеюсь, что заявление будет одобрено, как это уже однажды было. Мой опыт общения с российским посольством и консульством всегда был положительным – профессиональным и эффективным, для меня нет никакого ‘специального режима’. Я предоставляю те же самые документы как кто-либо еще и плачу тот же самый визовый сбор.

По правде говоря, некоторые сотрудники в российском консульстве знают меня и Graham Londonна личном уровне дружески относятся ко мне и поддерживают мою работу по освещению правды с территории Донбасса. Они просто хорошие люди.

Разумеется, меня жёстко критиковала украинская сторона, видя, что моя работа делает многое, чтобы разрушить их ложь, которая поддерживается на Украине. И моя работа высоко ценилась в России (см. слева одну из таких, присланных мне из России, милых вещей), которая видела во мне независимого западного корреспондента, который сообщает правду в мире западных корреспондентов, давно уже пожертвовавшими понятиями журналисткой чести, и атакуют Россию ради своей карьеры или служат своему государству.

Меня действительно мало беспокоят беспрерывные нападки на меня Graham Donbass“сторонников Украины”. И я очень благодарен за поддержку и доброту ко мне русских людей и людей во всем мире. Однако ни враждебность, ни симпатия не дают мне права принадлежать к какой либо стороне. Я остаюсь абсолютно объективным, нейтральным корреспондентом.

Итак, я возвращаюсь для продолжения работы. В дополнение к этому рад сообщить, что мне удалось собрать более чем $5000 на моём посвящённом Донбассу благотворительном мероприятии в Лондоне, а также от сбора средств онлайн и онлайн-магазина в поддержку Донбасса, и ещё больше я рад, что могу помочь Лилии – девушке, ампутант, пострадавшей от артобстрела.P1230109

Я абсолютно убеждён, что будучи журналистом, можно записывать репортажи и одновременно делать добрые дела. Я буду сообщать новости с Донбасса, а также распределять и снимать материалы о распределении гуманитарной помощи, так великодушно переданной многими людьми в поддержку гражданским жителям Донбасса.

Перед отъездом, рано утром 7-го мая, я сделаю то, что считаю чрезвычайно важными – я буду голосовать выборах в Великобритании. Я люблю Соединенное Королевство и я призываю всех, кто может голосовать, отдать свой голос за будущее нашего великого народа.

Затем буду в Москве на 9-е мая в День Победы – то, что я с нетерпением жду, а затем возвращаюсь, чтобы работать на Донбассе!

На этом всё. Мы продолжаем!

***

Спасибо Ира Миронова и Наташа Фрейтаг за помощь!

My Return to Work in Donbass

Graham W Phillips

Graham and dadI’ve spent the last 2 months in London, and had a truly wonderful time in this city in which I lived and worked for 10 years. I’ve spent time with family (that’s my dad, btw), friends, been to Wembley – twice, been around London, watched a lot of favourite shows Come Dine with Me, Dinner Date, Grand Designs, and more.

For some time, I have been ready, and preparing to return to work in Donbass, where, from August 2014 to February 2015 I spent a continuous 6 1/2 months, before my return to London in March.

To this end, I applied for a visa for the Russian federation. My plan is to be in Moscow on May 9th, to commemorate, photograph and film, Victory Day there, and then Graham at workproceed directly to Donbass, and Donetsk – my helmet, bulletproof jacket, and working equipment are there, and I’ll immediately return to work.

I’ll be travelling by my car, a Rover 75, full of humanitarian aid for Donbass donated in London. I’ve driven to Ukraine, and through Ukraine 3 times before. However, this time, as above, I’ll be driving through Russia to my destination of Donbass. I was deported from Ukraine twice in 2014, for no reason other than reporting news inconvenient to the Kiev government. I was banned from Ukraine for three years, in July of 2014, for the same reason.

I don’t consider this ban valid – I was given neither official documentation, nor any kind of ‘black mark’ in my passport. The reasons given by the Kiev authorities for my ban changed several times – they were consistent only in all being nonsense.

However, I am aware of the current situation in Ukraine. A lawless state where Oles Buzinaperceived opposition figures are hunted and killed, most recently, anti-war journalist Oles Buzina (pictured). There is no question that, given the degree of sentiment against me in Ukraine due to my reporting events in Donbass not agreeable to the Kiev government, any trip into Ukraine would be a suicide mission.

Yet I don’t agree in letting the Kiev government tactics of repression, tantamount to state terrorism, win. I’m committed to working in Donbass. No other western correspondent has reported there either earlier, or longer, than myself. I’m very excited Graham at work1about returning to work there next week!

Despite what the pro-Euromaidan/Ukraine side would perpetuate, my relationship with the Russian state, consulate, is that of a normal British citizen with the Russian state. I apply for a visa, with the relevant documentation, passport photos, and hope that application is approved, as this one has been. My experiences of the Russian embassy and consulate have always been positive – professional, efficient, however there is no ‘special treatment’. I submit the same documentation as anyone else, pay the same visa fee.

True to say, some in the Russian consulate know me, and on a personal level have been friendly to me, and supportive of my work in bringing the truth out of Donbass. They are simply nice people. Of course I’ve been vilified by a Ukraine which has seen Graham Londonmy work do much to shatter their falsehoods and lies which support, and purport, the Ukrainian position. And I’ve been appreciated in a Russia (one of many nice things sent to me from Russia, left) which has seen in me an independent western correspondent who has reported the truth, in a world of western correspondents who long since sacrificed that concept that to blanket attack Russia, either to further their career, or serve their state.

I am not really bothered about the relentless attacks on me by ‘pro-Ukraine’ supporters. And I’m very grateful for the support, kindness, from Russian people, people across the Graham Donbassworld in fact. However neither animosity nor affinity give me any affiliation. I’m a completely objective, neutral correspondent.

In my last time in Donbass, I was most often referred to as a ‘war correspondent’, but do not read in my return any indication that I will be returning in that capacity. I would be much happier to be a ‘peace’ correspondent.

So, I get back to work as a correspondent. On top of this, I am delighted to have over £3400 raised at my Donbass event in London, more from online fundraising and the Support Donbass shop, and still more to help a shelling victim, amputee, Lilya.

I absolutely believe in the capacity of a journalist both to report, and to do good. I’ll be P1230109reporting news in Donbass, and distributing, filming distribution of, the humanitarian aid so generously given by so many to help the civilians of Donbass.

Before leaving, early morning on May 7th, I’ll be doing something I consider enormously important – voting in the UK election. I love the United Kingdom, and I urge all who can to vote, have their say in the future of our great nation.

Then, Moscow on May 9th, Victory Day, something I’m hugely looking forward to – as well as getting back to work in Donbass!

So, that’s that, and we crack on!

Exclusive Mikael Skillt Interview #AskMikaelSkillt

Swede Mikael Skillt, a senior member of Ukraine’s notorious Azov battalion, first came to my attention in July of last year, in a rare BBC article covering extremism on the Ukrainian side, extracts here –

Mikael Skillt 1 The appearance of far-right activists, both foreign and home-grown, among the Ukrainian volunteers fighting in east Ukraine is causing unease….

As to his political views, Mr Skillt prefers to call himself a nationalist, but in fact his views are typical of a neo-Nazi….

Mr Skillt believes races should not mix. He says the Jews are not white and should not mix with white people. His next project is to go fight for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad because he believes Mr Assad is standing up to “international Zionism”.

He came to my attention on Twitter last August, as I re-entered Donbass to continue reporting, after my 2nd deportation from Ukraine. Our first ‘conversation’ came in November, and consisted of a thinly-veiled wish for my death, from Mikael – and a robust reply from mine –

Fullscreen capture 29042015 201256.bmpHowever, that was then. In my capacity as a ‘controversial’, correspondent, I receive a volume of death threats and general abuse from ‘pro-Ukrainians’ which would at least provide part-time employment for a PA, if chose to respond to them. This reached a peak after my shrapnel wound in November of 2014. However, Mikael did not add to this, and by December 10th, we had our first ‘polite‘ exchange.

Fullscreen capture 29042015 211415.bmp

Since then, we have had dozens of interactions on Twitter. Despite a mutual disagreement with each other, on the ‘issues’, our interactions have been characterised Mikael Skilltby a civility hardly associated with Twitter and dialogue between those holding such differing views. Leaving his political views, affiliations, and actions out of the equation, my experience of Mikael Skillt is an intelligent man, capable of politeness, charm even.

No question that Mikael Skillt is a man of extreme interest, and I’ve yet to see an interview with the 38-year old from Sundsvall, on the Swedish coast, which answers the questions I’d like to ask him.

More to the point, the questions you no doubt would like to ask him. And now you can. Mikael has agreed to an interactive Twitter interview this Sunday. All the questions, with answers, will be published here on the Truth Speaker. Here’s what you need to do, to get involved –

SkilltTime: Sunday 16:00 GMT – May 3rd, 2015

Duration: One hour

Twitter Format: Your Question Here? @MikaelSkillt @GrahamWP_UK #AskMikaelSkillt

Language: English

Rules: Mikael has said he won’t respond to one-liners calling him a ‘nazi’ or so. I would ask that you do ask questions, rather than abuse. We have one hour here with a man who clearly has a lot to say, let’s use it constructively!

Mikael has also said he won’t ask questions which impact on military intelligence. However, I say that you can ask absolutely anything which interests you – it’s Mikael’s choice if he chooses not to answer.

That’s all – see you Sunday, let’s make it a good one! Graham

Who is Stepan Bandera?

Graham Phillips

On Sunday, I went along to the Stepan Bandera museum in north London. Apparently open in London for over 50 years. That Sunday saw perhaps the museum achieve the most Fullscreen capture 28042015 175511.bmpcoverage in its half-century term, as I was physically denied entrance to the premises, housed in an Islington townhouse.

Attention descended on the museum, and the man behind it, unknown to many in the western world – so just who is Stepan Bandera?

Stepan BanderaStepan Andriyovych Bandera was born in Ukraine’s western village of Staryi Uhryniv to a clerical family. Politicised from an early age, Bandera rose through activist, scout, up to leader of the Ukrainian nationalist movement. Well-known through Ukraine in his life, primarily for being responsible for the proclamation of an Independent Ukrainian State in Lvov in 1941, his fame to some, notoriety to others, grew to such an extent after his 1959 KGB assassination that then-President Viktor Yushchenko attempted to award him the Hero of Ukraine accolade as one of his final acts in power, in 2010. It was annulled a year later by then new President Viktor Yanukovych.

Bandera KievTo pro-Ukrainians, though, Bandera is a hero and veneration him was already rising in Ukraine before, over 50 years dead, he became one of the most prominent figures of Euromaidan, left, hanging in Kiev’s central administrative building even. German historian Grzegorz Rossolinski-Liebe believes the mythologising of Bandera began in Canada after his death as a way of bonding the separate Ukrainian diaspora, so keen to have a ‘hero’ they could identify as Ukrainian they were prepared to overlook all else. Over time, with the active hold Canadian expat Ukrainians exert over Ukraine, (Stepan Bandera’s grandson, Stephen, along with other Bandera relatives, lives over there), the Stepan Bandera youngcult of Bandera found its way back to Ukraine, with inconvenient facts of Bandera’s life pushed aside by the new Bandera mythology.

To get back to Bandera facts – from boyhood he was involved with Ukrainian ultra-nationalist organisations, rising through the ranks to become chief propaganda officer of the OUN in 1931, active in recruiting Ukrainian nationalists in both western and eastern Ukraine. By 1932 he was second in command of OUN in Galicia, and 1933 head of the OUN.

Along with other Ukrainian ultra-nationalists,

Roman Shukhevych, Stepan Lenkavsky, Yaroslav Stetsko, Yaroslav Starukh, Bandera was key in developing the concept of “permanent revolution” in Ukraine. This took the premise that GaliciaUkrainian people would always be exploited by an ‘occupier’, revolution would be required to overthrow that system, and then another once the inevitable ‘exploitation’ emerged again, and so on.

After becoming head of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists, OUN, in 1933, Bandera set about either converting to his cause, or driving out the Poles and Soviets in the at the time disputed territory of Galicia (above left – much now subsumed as west Ukraine). This policy failed to have his desired effect in obtaining autonomy for the region. Bandera then turned to an attempt at assassination, plotting to do away with Polish minister of internal affairs, Bronisław Pieracki – it failed, he got caught, and sentenced to death for that.

Andriy Melnyk Stepan BanderaBy the time of his arrest and subsequent imprisonment, in 1934, Bandera‘s political career had long moved to the insurgent terrorism he had chosen as the method of achieving an independent Ukrainian state. Death sentence commuted to life, then released after five years, after agreeing unconditionally to cooperate with Nazi Germany, in 1939, Bandera headed straight to occupied Krakow, capital of Nazi Germany’s General Government. However, there he failed to regain control of his former organisation, the OUN, falling out with current leader, Andriy Melnyk (the two pictured, above left).

Bandera OUNAs a result of the fallout, the OUN (right) split into two, as Andriy Melnyk who had been leading the organisation, refused to endorse Bandera’s intent to actively seek Nazi collaboration. So it was, the OUN split and Bandera’s OUN-B sought out Nazi partnership. Breaking away from the more conservative Melnyk, Bandera formed the OUN-B (to Melnyk’s OUN-M), and set about full integration with Nazi German forces. Bandera himself held meetings with the heads of Germany’s intelligence, with the aim of forming battalions ‘Nachtigall‘ and ‘Roland‘, comprising Ukrainian OUN members, loyal to the Nazis.

February 25, 1941 saw head of the Abwehr, Wilhelm Franz Canaris sanctioning the creating of “Ukrainian Legion”, to comprise 800 fighters, fighting as part of Nazi Germany’s forces, under Shukhevych. Bandera himself oversaw the formation of small units of the OUN-B, named ‘Mobile Groups’, comprising teams of 5-15 members who would travel around Western Ukraine and beyond spreading propaganda and recruiting. The recruitment pitch shared a Nazi platform – with anti-Semitism at its core, the difference being that supposedly an independent Ukraine would be allowed to exist Nazi Ukraineindependently alongside any German super-nation.

The tactic was successful, with the mobile groups some 7000 strong, recruiting waves of fighters, and support for the Nazis spreading across Western Ukraine, with towns in the west turning out in force to greet Nazi forces (left), even to parts of the capital of Kiev, and prominent Western Ukrainian literary figures lending their support, notably the duo of Ivan Bahrianyi and Vasyl Barka.

In early 1941, the Nachtigall unit was formed, under Bandera, and outfitted in the standard Wehrmacht uniforms, placing blue and yellow ribbons on their shoulders. Their aims were outlined in a May 1941 Krakow meeting: “Moskali (derogatory term for Russians), Poles, Jews are hostile to us must be exterminated in this struggle, especially those who would resist our regime: deport them to their own lands, Lvov pogromimportantly: destroy their intelligentsia that may be in the positions of power … Jews must be isolated, removed from governmental positions in order to prevent sabotage, those who are deemed necessary may only work with an overseer… Jewish assimilation is not possible.

So it was, the OUN-B followed behind the Nazi invasion into Ukraine. Bandera and his Nachtigall battalion have been accused of a particularly ruthless approach towards the extermination of the Jews, Poles, and Russians they viewed as the enemy. On June 30, emboldened by a Ukraine which looked like it was falling to the Nazis, the OUN-B, led by Bandera, declared an independent Ukrainian State from Lvov, stating that it would work closely with Hitler and the Nazis to form the ‘new order in Europe’. The first Lvov Bandera tangible manifestation of this was the ‘Lvov Pogrom‘, the mass extermination of Jews and Poles which took places from 30th June to 2nd July, murdering a number estimated as high as 10s of thousands. (Photos from pogrom).

Bandera’s Nachtigall battalion, and Bandera himself, were actively involved in this pogrom, with reports that the Nazis themselves were shocked at their brutality in execution. This independent ‘Ukrainian state’ lasted less than a week, with Bandera arrested by the Nazis, who had duped the gullible 32-year-old at the time, into believing they supported an independent Ukrainian state. Of course, they simply wanted to ease their passage into occupying Ukraine.

Bandera himself was arrested on July 5th 1941 and taken to prison in Berlin. The Germans treated Bandera well, but he was a prisoner, not allowed to leave Berlin for Zellenbauthe remainder of 1941, then in January 1942, transferred to Sachsenhausen concentration camp’s special barrack for high profile political prisoners, Zellenbau (left). Bandera made no attempts to escape from here, watching on in comfort as hundreds of thousands of his countrymen perished in conflict.

He spent most of the next 3 years in prison, albeit with special treatment after indicating ongoing willingness to help the Nazis. He had access to a radio in prison, and even Bandera Stepancertain communication with the outside world, so by 1944, he knew the Nazis were losing. Actually, the military branch of his own OUN, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, UIA, had even changed sides to start fight against the Germans in early 1943. Yet, when Bandera was approached in April 1944, he enthusiastically agreed to throw himself into the Nazi effort, released in September of 1944, setting up office in Berlin arranging supplies of arms and intelligence in an attempt to enlist the Ukrainians once more to fight for the fast-losing Nazis.

Yet, by this time, most of them were dead or had switched sides. The seeds sown by the OUN-B’s dissemination of anti-Semitic propaganda had seen Ukraine engage in Babi Yarseveral atrocities against Jews during the war, most shockingly perhaps the Babi Yar massacres (right – more on them here). Bandera’s re-recruitment attempt was unsuccessful, the war finished just a few months later, seeing Nazi defeat and Bandera revert to civilian life. Sort of.

As for Bandera’s family, reports that Bandera’s brother Bogdan was killed by the Nazis, are unconfirmed. His brothers Oleksandr and brother Vasyl (below left) were killed in Auschwitz, with Bandera acolytes having observed over the years that Stepan could hardly endorse a regime which had Vasyl_Bandera_in_Auschwitzexecuted his brothers. In reality, evidence points to them being killed by Polish inmates who discovered their identity. It is known Bandera’s father was executed by the Germans, though it is reported his father did not share Stepan’s extreme politics and some have suggested he was executed for harbouring a member of the OUN opposed to the Nazis. This was the month before Stepan proclaimed Ukrainian independence in Lvov.

The remainder of the 40s and early 50s, saw Stepan Bandera, working for the German equivalent of the CIA, giving freelance spy training for infiltration into the Soviet Union. Bandera had met his future wife, Yaroslava Yaroslava Bandera(pictured right), in Krakow in 1940, with her at 22 already a seasoned activist for the Ukrainian cause. The two married in June of that year and had three children, Natalia, born 1941, Andrei (year of birth given as 1944 or 1946), Lesya 1947. Bandera was never able to take adequate care of his family, with Natalia having spoken of a childhood of assumed names, hiding, living in cabins in forests, going for long periods of time without seeing her father, subsisting on inadequate food.

In 1954, Yaroslava and the children joined Stepan in Munich. Yet, life for the family was still tough here. Post war, the Germans were willing to leave Bandera alone, the western forces to occasionally use him for espionage assistance. But the Soviets had not forgotten Bandera, with repeated attempts made on his life over the years. In 1959, these reached an apotheosis, with German police arresting a man seen taking a Bandera assassinationsuspicious interest in Bandera’s children. Bandera was given extra security, but strongly advised to leave Munich, which he declined to do.

On October 15th, 1959, Bandera was killed in his own apartment, by KGB assassin Bogdan Stashinsky, who had been watching him since January, but intensely for several days. Despite this, the (in Stashinsky descriptions) ‘short, bald, blue-eyed’ Bandera (living under the named Stepan Popel) had let his bodyguards off that day. As Stashinsky produced his cyanide gun inside a rolled-up newspaper, Bandera’s last words, as he held his shopping, were the rather redundant “What are you doing here?” Bandera didn’t even produce his own gun, on him at all times, with him a proficient marksman (he had taken an active part in the Lvov pogrom). Shot in the face, quickly turning purple, then black, the 50-year-old Bandera died on a third-floor landing before the ambulance had even arrived.

Bandera’s wife and children, upon his death, quickly moved to Toronto to start a new life. Bandera had politicized his children from infanthood, yet it was only after his death they learned they were Banderas, not Popels. Natalia took some part in Ukrainian Stephen Banderamovements, yet unable to recover from the health problems of their childhood, Natalia died in 1985 at 44, she had two children, Sophia, born 1972 and Orestes, 1975. Andrei, Andrew, took an active role in the Ukrainian diaspora, forming several organisations, a newspaper ‘Ukrainian Echo’, and arranging mass demonstrations. With his wife Mary, he had three children, Stepan (Stephen, Steve – right), 1970, Bogdana, 1974, and Helen, in 1977.

Stephen, Steve, who has tried to forge a career as a journalist, has been the most vocal defender of his grandfather, accusing others of unwarranted attacks on the grandfather he frequently referred to as a ‘hero’. However, his actions on behalf of him seem to have waned in recent years. Steve previously did extensive ‘historical’ work to exonerate his grandfather, though his fallback position was always that no one really knows the truth: ‘an accurate account of Ukraine’s 20th century history remains largely unwritten.’ Sadly for ‘Steve’, countless, verified, articles of history exist from that time.

Suffering health problems, Andrei died in 1984 at either 38 or 40, depending on sources. Lesya, who worked as an interpreter for Ukrainian organisations and had no children, lived on to the age of 64, dying in 2011. Yaroslava had died in 1977 at the age Stepan Bandera stampof 59. Despite his wish to be returned to Ukraine in death, Bandera was buried in Munich, where he remains to this day, his burial place the subject of several recent attacks.

Even in death, Bandera’s fortunes have been little better than life. In 2009, to mark 100 years of his birth, he was put on a stamp (right), which many outlets in Ukraine refused to stock. Then, on January 22nd, Ukraine’s Day of Unity, in 2010, Viktor Yushchenko, in his final weeks as President, attempted to use the controversial figure (in Ukraine as a whole, pre-Euromaidan, only 6% had a strongly positive opinion of him, as high as 37% in the west, down to 1% in parts of the east), as a last stand, and two-fingered farewell. Bandera was made a Hero of Ukraine, with grandson Stephen accepting the award on his behalf.

Bandera NaziThe award was internationally condemned, not to mention widely ridiculed (left) with other Hero of Ukraine holders speaking out of their wish to renounce the award, even criticised by the European Parliament. Bandera held it for less than a year, it was annulled on January 12th 2011, by then new President Yanukovych. There had been talk of huge uprisings across the country if the award was annulled, but in these pre-Euromaidan days of calm in Ukraine, that didn’t materialise.

As for his tangible legacy, statues of Bandera, several exist in the West of Ukraine, Bandera Lvovhave enjoyed mixed fortunes. One near Lvov was destroyed in 2013, the Lvov statue itself, unveiled in 2012, cost double the projected amount, $1.2 million, with sources indicating substandard materials used in the finished article.

And then of course, his museum in London, of which more to come. A strange, closed doors museum with admittance only to those on a pre-approved list. Those pro-Ukrainians who go attempting to find vindication for their reverence for Bandera in a museum of revisionism, in which Bandera appears as a ‘hero’, rather than what he was – an unapologetic, ruthless, failure-prone Nazi collaborator.

Bandera museum

The Truth Speaker at 200 – in Numbers

Fullscreen capture 28042015 225633.bmp482,530 – the ranking of the Truth Speaker in the world’s websites. Sounds pretty low, but with some 644 million websites in the world, it’s comfortably within the top 0.1%. Let’s focus on cracking the top 100,000 next!

270k – As you read this, The Truth Speaker will be approaching that number of hits

105k – Hits from Russia – the number 1 country for hits

85,276 – Hits on the Truth Speaker in record month so far, February

42k – Hits from Ukraine, number 2 country for Truth Speaker hits

Fullscreen capture 28042015 225644.bmp17k – Around 17k hits each from the United States, and United Kingdom

12,238 – The record number of hits in a day, January 27th, 2015 (the first day of the Truth Speaker)

11,340 – Hits on the most popular article here, the Russian version of my 20 Worst Photos from Donbass

3046 – Hits per day in record month, February

Fullscreen capture 28042015 225655.bmp475 – Comments left on the Truth Speaker

200 – The number of articles. This, the 200th no less!

165 – The Truth Speaker has been viewed from 165 countries

91 – The Truth Speaker is 91 days old. The first articles were published here on January 27th, 2015.

32 – Hits on the least popular article, the Russian version of Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky’s press conference

Fullscreen capture 28042015 225749.bmpOver a dozen – stories have been broken, first, exclusive on the Truth Speaker!

7 – Languages the Truth Speaker has been published in – English, Russian, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Serbian

5 – The number of people who’ve written articles for The Truth Speaker

1 – 1 view from each of these countries – Belize, Seychelles, French Polynesia, Burundi, Niger, Myanmar (Burma), St. Martin, Turks & Caicos Islands, Monaco, Guyana, Guinea, Aruba, Brunei, Bermuda, Rwanda, Congo, Zambia, Tongo, Fiji, Liya, Liechtenstein.

No set number – I can’t say how many people exactly have contributed, supported the Truth Speaker – either by translating, writing, sharing, even just reading. I’m hugely grateful to you.

And on we go to 201 soon, all the best, Graham Phillips, editor

10 raisons pourquoi l’Ukraine est morte

Graham Phillips

UkraineflagAussi dur et triste que cela puisse paraître pour ceux qui aiment l’Ukraine, y compris moi-même qui y ai vécu pendant deux ans avant la guerre, c’était le pays que j’adorais, mais après l’EuroMaidan l’Ukraine est morte. Et voilà pourquoi  –

1 – S’il n’y a pas de loi, ce n’est plus un pays, c’est un état échoué – la vague récente des attentats contre ceux qui sont perçus comme ‘anti-régime’ en Ukraine accompagnée par l’échec bouleversant de l’investigation et le soutien officiel des responsables des attentats, c’ est un témoignage de ce que la police ukrainienne cède au group terroriste Pravy Sektor. Et ce n’est que le début d’une longue liste. Il n’y aucune loi en Ukraine du post- EuroMaidan.

2 – S’il n’y a pas de démocratie, ce n’est plus un pays. C’est un état bananier. Le 22 février 2014 l’EuroMaidan a expulsé non seulement le président démocratiquement élu mais aussi le gouvernement démocratiquement élu. Ils ont attendu trois mois avant de
tenir des éléctions présidentielles et 8 mois avant les élections parlementaires. Vers ce dmitryyaroshtemps, déjà trop tard, les éléments extremistes sont sortis hors de contrôle électoral   la partie néonazie Svoboda malgré le fait de recevoir moins de 5% de votes lors des élections parlementaires, est présente dans le parlement ukrainien et envoie régulièrement des guerriers sur les lignes de combat.

Le leader du group terroriste néonazi Pravy Sektor Dmitry Yarosh, à droite, qui a reçu moins de 1% lors des présidentielles et qui est sur la liste Interpol de recherche, aujourd’hui il est conseiller officiel des forces armées ukrainiennes.

3 – Il n’y aura jamais de paix en Ukraine. Maintenant il y a l’histoire et le futur de la violente révolution. Le Maidan a créé le précédent, il a imposé son président par la voie d’une violente révolution. Même si le Maidan était composé de différentes fractions
dont une grande partie ne soutenait pas le président. Au fait, le bataillon néonazi Nazi Azov1ukrainien Azov (à droite) a souvent exprimé son intention d’organiser un ‘nouveau Maidan’ et le désir de ‘déplacer les combats de Donbass à Kiev’.

Même Moscow Times, généralement pro-Kiev, a écrit à propos de la probabilité d’un nouveau Maidan.

Le Maidan a établi les conditions de la démolition institutionalisée de la démocratie en Ukraine : quelques milliers d’extremistes et la foule facilement manipulée par des slogans patriotiques peuvent dans le centre de Kiev renverser tout gouvernement qu’iles veulent. Le président ukrainien Poroshenko le sait et fait tout son possible pour calmer les radicaux. Toute personne objective sait que quoi qu’il en soit, il n’y aura pas de paix dans l’Ukraine de post-EuroMaidan.

Crimea4 – La Crimée, autrefois le territoire d’or du pays, qui a tenu le référendum pour sortir de l’Ukraine, ne retournera jamais à l’Ukraine, même la chancellière allemande Angela Merkel l’a admis dans sa récente déclaration de ‘nous ne l’oublierons jamais’ (mais nous ne ferons rien pour l’empêcher).

Une fois le pays perd une partie de son territoire, ce n’est plus le même pays.

5 – Les Républiques populaires de Donetsk et du Lougansk ne reviendront jamais. Les forces armées ukrainiennes n’y ont pas pu s’emparer d’aucun territoire à partir du mois de juillet 2014, elles ne faisaient que perdre le territoire. Les forces des RPD et RPL possèdent des lignes de défense consolidées, et s’il y a un quelconque Fullscreen capture 18042015 231746.bmpmouvement, cela ne servira qu’à prendre encore plus du territoire de Donbass – à présent les Republiques ont sous leur contrôle 1/3 de la région qui autrefois produisait 80% du volume total du charbon en Ukraine mais d’où les RPD et RPL n’approvisionnent plus l’Ukraine. Et la production industrielle dans le reste de l’ancien centre industriel de Donbass est presque totalement paralysée.

Les RPD et RPL ont tenu un référundum et les élections pour sortir de l’Ukraine. La majorité de ceux qui habitent dans la partie de Donbass occupée par l’Ukraine ont voté en faveur de la sécession. Et dans l’entre-temps ceux partout en Ukraine deviennent moins préoccupés par l’idée de ‘reprendre’ le territoire des RPD et RPL et plus hésitant quant à l’Ukraine même à cause du 6. –

6 – Vie normale est quasiment impossible en Ukraine. L’inflation en Ukraine est de 272%, le coût dehryvnia est 40% moins de ce qu’il était avant. L’inflation est montée en

Fullscreen capture 19042015 102426.bmpflèche, les salaires ont effondré, le business partout dans le pays a fermé. Bref, les gens en Ukraine n’ont plus d’argent : les ventes d’automobiles ont chuté de 67% par rapport à l’année précédente, la production automobile a chuté de 96%, 46 banques ont déclaré faillite l’année dernière.

Quant à la source d’agacement éternel en Ukraine, la corruption,  elle est devenue à tel point exacerbante que le Maidan s’est posé comme un des objetifs principaux de Ukrainel’extirper, et maintenant elle est encore pire qu’auparavant.

Et en ce qui concerne les soldats ukrainiens tués dans les combats dans le Donbass, les sources estimaient leur nombre à plus de 20 000 l’août dernier. J’ai vu des dizaines de corps des soldats ukrainiens. Combien d’entre eux ont été identifiés ? Moins d’un quart. Partout en Ukraine on voit la pauvreté, l’hyperinflation, le chômage, les proches qui sont partis ou qui ont été mobilisés pour combattre dans le Donbass, qui sont disparus pour toujours et dont le destin ne sera jamais connu.

7 – La dette de l’Ukraine est de plus de $80 millardset va bientôt atteindre $100 millards, c’est-à-dire 100% de PIB qui ne cesse pas de plonger. Le récent programme de sauvetage du FMI accepté de $17,5 millards ne fera qu’effleurer la

Ukraine businesssurface. L’économie de l’Ukraine a diminué de  7.5% en 2014, selon les calculs les plus modérés. Les estimations pour cette année varient de 6% à plus de 20%. Les gouvernements européens s’engagent à fournir leur soutien et entre-temps le business européen se retire en masse, des centaines ont déjà quitté le marché ukranien, plus de 600 d’entreprises allemandes opérant en Ukraine effectuent un audit sur le retrait du marché.

Le commerce avec le pays qui était de loin le principal partenaire de l’Ukraine en termes de l’export et de l’import, la Russie, a été bien évidemment décimé, l’économie de l’Ukraine a été sinistrée et continue sa voie vers l’abîme.

8 – La signification de ‘Ukraine’ a changé, consultez simplement Google de l’Ukraine à commencer par 2011, 2012 et puis 2015 –

Fullscreen capture 18042015 224657.bmp

Fullscreen capture 18042015 224636.bmp

Fullscreen capture 18042015 224612.bmp

l’Ukraine est maintenant associée avec le sang, la mort et la guerre. C’est le sang qui est associé avec le drapeau ukrainien du allant des tirs de l’armée à Odessa et Marioupol jusqu’aux constants bombardements des quartiers civils du Donbass. La perception, l’identité et la définition même de “l’Ukraine” ont changé pour toujours.

9 – Il n’y a personne qui puisse rendre l’Ukraine unie de nouveau. Il n’y pas de figure politique qui puisse unifier l’ancien pays. Personne élu ou imposé par Kiev ne pourrait jamais gagner le soutien des régions qui ont rempu avec l’Ukraine du fait même d’être

Ukrainelié à Kiev. Aucune figure politique ne serait jamais élue dans ces régions détachées sur la ‘plateforme de l’Ukraine unie’.

Il n’y a tout simplement personne qui puisse  de nouveau unifier l’Ukraine.

10 – Il y aura ‘une Ukraine’, quoi que cela désigne, dans le futur. Mais l’« Ukraine », pour certains simplement « l’Ukraine » est finie. Elle est morte. Plus vite les pro-ukrainiens l’acceptent, plus de vies seront sauvées, plus rapidement ils découvriront ce que ‘Ukraine’ est, après tout, et ils commenceront à la construire au lieu de détruire l’ancienne Ukraine.

***

Merci pour la traduction Maria Oussenko!

The Odessa Massacre – a Personal Tribute

Graham Phillips

I can’t pretend that my reaction towards the Odessa massacre didn’t come from the heart. I’d lived there for almost a year before the massacre of May 2nd 2014, in which pro-Ukraine activists burned alive a number of pro-Russia activists eyewitnesses report as over a hundred. Written numerous articles in raptures about the wonders of the southern coastal city. Taken any number of photos showing my love for the place I’d chosen to come to, call home.

Odessa

Odessa1

I remember things really starting in Odessa, March 2014. Peaceful demonstrations, here thousands marching for referendum –

That hope that proceedings could be resolved peacefully increasingly in March giving way to fears that would be far from the case, as each passing week in Odessa escalated –

I was away for May 2nd, already reporting in Slavyansk, however given my attendance at actions in Odessa, knew many who were killed in that inferno. A very interesting documentary on the tragic events of May 2nd here –

Before getting the call to come east, in early April 2014, you could have found me wandering around Odessa. I worked as a full-time journalist in my time in Kiev, on staff at a magazine along with a good career in freelancing. I knew that moving to Odessa would mean less journalism work, in the short term, but felt that long term, something would come of the inspiration of Odessa, which had inspired writers from Isaac Babel to Ilf and Petrov. I worked mostly as an English teacher, started a blog, used to just go out with my video camera and have fun. You could find me filming concerts –

Cycling about –

Just walking the streets, of the city founded by order of Catherine the Great

But after March 3rd, and an action at an administrative building in the city, it was clear Odessa3something had stirred in the city which had, until that point, mostly sat out Euromaidan. I was along from that day, photographing and filming events, on both the pro-Russia and pro-Ukraine sides.

On the ‘pro-Russia’ side, I knew these people. Odessites, extremely unhappy with the current situation in Ukraine – an unelected Kiev government passing legislation many saw a direct attack on their culture, way of life. They were, as you can see here, normal, Odessa citizens – from my experience of them, on a personal level, good people. Natives of Odessa, proud of their city, a ‘hero city’, their culture, a great one, and rich history.

Of course, as the situation escalated, there were more militant members of the Odessa, pro-Russia side, as there were on the pro-Ukraine side. Yet it must be said that at the demos in Odessa I attended, it was the pro-Ukrainians who came bearing weapons –

Yet, what happened on the evening of May 2nd, with reports of 42 to even over 100 of the ‘pro-Russia’ side burned alive by pro-Ukrainians, in the Trade Union building on Odessa’s Central ‘Kulikovo Pole’ marked a seismic shift in the situation. One from which there was no return, nor could be. It was a day which changed the mood, the stakes, the whole landscape of a situation which quickly spilled into all-out civil war. Just a week later, another large city by the sea, Mariupol, witnessed its own tragedy, when Ukrainian forces entered the city, opening fire on civilians.

OdessamanIn Odessa on May 2nd, true, some peaceful pro-Ukrainians tried to assist their countrymen as they perished in a building which had been their base, their gathering
place, for months. But more looked on, chanting pro-Ukrainian songs, posing for photos even. Some of those, formerly peaceful pro-Ukrainian activists, even made, threw Molotov cocktails, with then several who managed to escape incineration by leaping from windows reported as beaten to death on the ground below. Others, shot from the ground, at least escaped the agony of death by incineration.

Photos from here – 

Odessa may 2 2014 1

Odessa molotovs

Odessa May 2 2014

It’s unforgivable. On a human level, never mind as a journalist, it’s a pain which pierces my soul to think of those people, those I’d seen at demonstrations, including young girls, young men, middle-aged and older men, and women, perishing in such a barbaric way. Yet perhaps just as shocking, the true callousness of the Ukrainian government Odessa3and media – accusing them variously of being ‘Russian terrorists’, ‘Russians’ (actually, they were all, or almost all, native Odessites). The gloating. And then the memes, of burning colorado beetles. Of barbeque sauce. I won’t post them here, even link to them.

On May 2nd 2014, the Ukrainian side lost some of the key things you need to be a country. Something you need to be a person. Compassion. Humanity. Heart. The year since have seen Ukrainian powers do everything to prevent a proper investigation, and then blame it on ‘strong wind‘, an Odessa victimegregious mockery to those slain. Due to my being deported and banned from the country, the ongoing reign of terror against ‘opposition’ figures, I’ve not yet been able to return to Odessa to pay my tribute.

I’ll be back one day, for sure, to pay my tribute to those who stood against the fascism of this new, post-Euromaidan Ukraine are as one with the city of Odessa, the city they came from, the city they died in – proud, defiant, glorious.

***

Adapted, updated from my original article of last May 6th, here.