Christian de Montlibert
Professor emeritus, Marc Bloch University
The will of Germany first, then of the USA, to seize and dominate Ukraine is old, writes Annie Lacroix-Rizm from whom I borrow this information. The Habsburgs, then the Hohenzollerns, then Bismarck dreamed of it and put their ambitions into practice before and after the First World War. The imperialist Reich was supported in its “thrust to the East” (Drang nach Osten), by the Papal Curia. Germany supported and funded Ukrainian and Baltic nationalists to tear Russia to pieces and support the big landowners in their farmland grab. The big beneficiary of German funding was the “Organization of Nationalist Ukrainians” (OUN), founded by Stefan Bandera, “head of the Ukrainian terrorist organization in Poland” (Eastern Galicia), and his loyal lieutenants Mykolaev Lebed and Yaroslav Stetsko: all were as violently anti-Polish as they were anti-Communists, Russophobes and anti-Semites. The members of the two OUNs were associated with the preparations for the occupation of Poland, then with those of Barbarossa. As American historians and a French historian show, the "Banderists" formed part of the personnel of the 14th Legion of the Waffen SS Galicia (1943-1944), "relentless massacres, blessed and encouraged to work by the Uniate clerics , prelates and priests, arms and spies of the Vatican” as Annie Lacroix-Riz A .
American finance capital, keeping China its preserve, had simultaneously fought the eastward expansion of Russian imperialism. Long before the capture of the Winter Palace, he hated Russia at least as much as England, whose resources appealed to him as much as those of China. The big American bank had associated itself with the German intrigues between the two wars. As early as 1944 the USA envisaged and supported the revival of allied States (Poland, Finland, Baltic countries and Romania) to counter the USSR. From 1948 the liquidation of the USSR and the occupation of Ukraine were one of the objectives of the USA, which American historians such as Gregor Mitrovitch, Richard Aldrich, Benjamin Tromly have clearly shown. The USA will quickly take over from the Nazis in supporting the Banderists and all the Ukrainian nationalist groups supported in this by the Vatican (declassified archival sources of the State Department). It is true that in the 1920s Western countries waged a war against communism in which British and French contingents operated in Ukraine while the US contingent operated in Siberia.
The USSR was the enemy of American capitalism and remained so long after the capitulation of Nazi Germany, as shown by the signing of the Atlantic Pact of 1949 in which the USA planned to use the "cannon fodder" of Europeans for the fighting on the ground against Russia while they were reserving naval air bases for the bombings. (These cynical statements by the US representative will trigger much controversy.) Later, in April 2008, in Bucharest, the USA planned to facilitate Ukraine's entry into NATO, to help bring Ukraine closer to other European countries and to see a “pro-American liberal democracy” established in Ukraine. This project will be ratified by a USA-Ukraine treaty on December 19, 2008. Since then the USA has not ceased to develop a policy of Russian "containment," based on an arsenal of missiles and anti-missiles on the ground (some 200 billion US dollars have been spent on this), and on an Aegis Ashore radar system inaugurated in Deveselu in Romania in 2016, and on the THAAD system in outer space (the high altitude missile system), a continuation of the Reagan plan called "Star Wars.". Even more recently, in November 2021, the USA signed a treaty allowing the “interoperability” of the USA – Ukraine armies, thus circumventing the impossibility for Ukraine to join NATO. In its Preamble, this charter "affirms the commitments made to strengthen the Ukraine-United States strategic partnership by Presidents Zelenski and Biden on September 1, 2021". The charter maintains that Ukraine will have the support of the USA in its desire to recover Donbass and Crimea (Section II article 1).
The North American proposal was enough to seduce a Ukrainian faction largely won over to positions hostile to Russia. Since the end of the USSR, Ukrainian nationalist groups have appeared publically. These groups are the heirs of the bands led by Stepan Bandera (Bandera collaborated with Nazi Germany and created the Ukrainian Legion under the command of the Wehrmacht; the Legion took part in the massacres of the Jews; in 1944 he trained and armed Ukrainian fighters to fight against advancing Soviet troops. Nationalist groups won the official State commemoration of Bandera's birthday, and a statue was constructed in Lviv. The Simon Wiesenthal Center recalls that Ukrainian collaborators of the Nazis participated in the Holocaust and murdered more than 33,000 Jews. Svoboda, the Right Sector, Azov, the Patriots, the Ukrainian Legion, the Ukrainian Nationalist Social Party, etc. and many other far-right nationalist groups active in Ukraine are also promoting anti-Semitism. These far-right militias are enjoyed considerable support after the failure of the Ukrainian army to impose its force in the Donbas. Their numbers would grow to more than a hundred thousand men from different countries.
The Svoboda group, whose emblem is an oblique swastika, turns out to be the heir to the Ukrainian Insurrectionary Army which collaborated with the Nazis and carried out the massacres of the Jews of Galicia; their anti-Semitism has recently led them to hunt down Hasidic Jews who had come on pilgrimage.
Right Sector is a group described as “fascist” by the Time Magazine, “neo-fascist” by Die Welt. They have distributed copies of Mein Kampf and The Protocols of Elders of Zion in Kyiv according to Haaretz, and they have participated in hunts for homosexuals and blockades of Russian-speaking Crimea.
Azov is a far-right volunteer regiment led by a neo-Nazi core. From 2014 Azov has been involved in the fight against Russian speakers in Donbas with sudden attacks such as tortures and executions (according to Amnesty International). It was led by Andryi Biletsky who contributed to the development of the Ukrainian National Socialist Party and then to the “Patriot” party (his insignia is reminiscent of the swastika). In 2016 the Azov regiment seized Mariupol, captured pro-Russian militants and militarily occupied the city. In October 2019, the Azov group and other far-right groups demonstrated and pressured the government to prevent the application of the Minsk agreements.
The “Patriot” party, is a strongly anti-Semitic paramilitary organization; very active during the demonstrations in Maidan Square, they set fire to administrative buildings and claim to defend the “white race” and fight against Zionism.
The USA has supported these neo-Nazis since 1946 and encouraged them to overthrow the government in 2004 and especially in 2014. These groups have been all the more active as the elections taking place before the events in Maidan Square show that the eastern part of Ukraine votes over 80% for candidates in favor of rapprochement or even attachment to Russia, while the western part votes over 80% and more for nationalist candidates some of whom represent the extreme right. Violence by far-right groups against Russian-speakers in the East escalated throughout this period. In November 2013 these groups successfully hijacked popular demonstrations. Wielding clubs, Molotov cocktails, and other weapons, they drove out Russian speakers, overthrew the government and occupied state institutions. This so-called "Orange Revolution" was financed by at least two Ukrainian billionaires: Iola Tymoshenko, who built her fortune on the exploitation and sale of gas and oil; who has served as Prime Minister, Minister, as a nationalist deputy; and founded the far-right "Fatherland" Party. The second oligarch is Kolomoisky, who is often in alliance with Tymoshenko. He largely finances the "Right Sector" group and has offered "one million (US dollars) to whoever would assassinate a pro-Russian deputy".
The President of Ukraine is currently surrounded by former members of these far-right groups who, in order to maintain appearances have formally resigned from their membership in militant right-wing groups, but who have in no way denounced the ideas of these groups. We could cite as examples Andryi Biletsky, Dmytro Yarosh and Arsen Avakov who were implicated by the Chief Rabbi of Kyiv for their "questionable" extremist positions... The discriminatory measures against the Russian-speaking part of Ukraine, particularly in the Donbas, include the prohibition of the Russian language and the non-payment of pensions for former Red Army soldiers. The war against the “separatists” has led to a large emigration to Russia. Thus Ukraine has turned out to be a very active center of struggle against Russia.
While in the United States the press can sometimes open its columns to divergent opinions, and while works by historians endeavor to explain the split between East and West in Ukraine, others like Richard Breitman professor at the University of Washington or Norman Goda professor at the University of Florida, (whose work is published by the National Archives of the Department of State and by the Cambridge University Press) do not hesitate to show the importance of the collaboration of Ukrainian nationalists with the Nazis; political scientists, likeJohn Mearsheimer, professor at the University of Chicago, affirm that the USA has a responsibility for the current war; and a media intellectual like Noam Chomsky referring to the neutrality of Mexico congers the theoretical possibility of a China that supports a Mexican government eager to install missiles along the Texas border, asking his readers to imagine, in such a case, the reaction of the USA.
France is characterized by its anti-Russian propaganda positions. Allowing no dissenting voices to be expressed even when extremely well documented, this anti-Russian position has been fabricated by intellectuals who have traditionally systematically belittled the social advances made by communist countries and who have tried to create an equivalence between Hitler and Stalin, between the Nazi concentration camps and Stalinist labor camps, between the crimes of the Holocaust and the deaths in the Gulag (an equivalence that the director of the center Simon Wiesenthal does not hesitate to describe as a "canard"). The countries under the control of the USA live in a universe of fantasies believing that present-day Russia wants to resurrect its old empire and that Vladimir Putin, as the successor to Joseph Stalin, can only be a “paranoid dictator.”
While Russia did not intervene directly during the Donbas war - to the great regret of the Russian-speaking populations - it seems that the intervention of February 20th was aimed at preventing a Ukrainian military aggression against the Russian-speaking areas of the Donbas which would have received a green light by Kamala Harris on February 19. Still, Russian military tactics seek to minimize casualties among civilians (it’s always too many!) unlike the bombings of the Second World War (the bombing of Dresden is said to have killed more than two hundred thousand people). The Russian army primarily targets Ukrainian snipers who have turned apartments in apartment buildings into firing posts or who use public buildings as military bases. The bombings of the Mariupol theater and the maternity hospital are not Russian but Ukrainian attacks. Russia has no interest in destroying Ukraine, and even less Kyiv, but rather to create a friendly buffer state that would prevent NATO-USA from getting too close to its borders and probably supporting and perhaps controlling the Russian-speaking regions of the south-east and the Sea of Azov. In fact, since 2008, Russia has been calling for a reorganization of security systems rethinking the purpose of NATO and its subjection to the will of the USA. Failing to be listened to, and faced with the danger posed by the USA-Ukraine agreements, Russia chose a military campaign to put pressure on international bodies to get them to rethink international agreements.
Underlying the struggles around security between the USA and Russia is a merciless struggle that has capitalist domination as its object. American capitalism is at war against Russian capitalism and against Chinese "capitalism" (the term is improper) with the aim of seizing markets, agricultural and industrial production, raw materials and communication channels. The fact remains that for the moment the armament industries, especially the North American industries, are making substantial profits (recently, investments in shares at the subcontractor Lockheed Martin acquired a 20% gain in profits in just one week) or hope to do so, such as those who propose to rebuild the destroyed buildings. Hostility against Russia undoubtedly springs largely from a North American economy-in-relative-decline which is always ready, when push comes to shove, to find legitimization in ideological arguments. The other force is the all-powerful military capacity of the United States which leads Americans to see the other two great powers, China and Russia, as enemy-competitors. Get rid of a "weakened and isolated" Russia "by dealing blows to the stability of the Russian state and relying on a stronger, more unified and more determined West" as stated by Jake Sullivan, adviser to the US National Security Council. Such tactics would make it possible to complete the militarized encirclement of China and gain complete control of the area.
To get out of this trap, which risks leading to a Third World War (which we know since the work of Rosa Luxemburg is unfortunately a tried and proven solution for solving a capitalist accumulation crisis), and in which nuclear weapons are likely to be employed, we still have to first to settle the Ukrainian question. This implies that the USA accepts the following three points:
• military neutralization of Ukraine, as Mexico is for the USA;
• establishment of a referendum to find out what the people of Donbas want and creation of a negotiated status for Crimea;
• resumption of commercial ties between Russia and Western Europe, which implies breaking the ties of vassalage of Western Europe vis à vis the USA.