Lugansk Beating

Ukraine: Unseen Ultra-Nationalists

Every time Russia cites “the threat of violence from ultra-nationalists” as forcing them to intervene in Crimea,  the US counters that “there is no evidence” of these threats. The US news reports that with all the journalists they have on the ground, they have found no signs of any ultra-nationalist’s operating in Ukraine. Vladimir Posner, a Russian journalist and CNN advisor on Russia responded, “Then you have not been looking very hard.”  I agree.

Why is it that the western press does not acknowledge the existence and activities of the Svoboda party, and the Right Sector? The BBC did a piece on the Right Sector back in January, where they point out the violent activities of the group. The Right Sector is an offshoot group of the Svoboda party, which has recently changed their logo from a Nazi symbol, seen here, to their current 3 finger logo. Svoboda holds several seats in the new Ukrainian government, and the Right Sector leader, Dmytro Yarosh, is now running for president of Ukraine.

There is evidence of increased anti-Semitism in the country at this point, and these radical groups are calling for more guns to “get to the point they want to go to.” (See 00:47 in this video. 00:17 is where Dmytro Yarosh makes his statement he is running for president of Ukraine).

Sashko Bily (AKA Aleksandr Ivanovich Muzychko), of the Right Sector, was seen threatening local council meetings, at 8:30 in this video his group has separated out former Yanukovych party people to be put on a punishment list,  and in this video (starting at 38:00 minutes) Vitalina Dzoz (a Yanukovych party MP) speaks to a talk show about being on the “punishment list” and not being allowed to leave Kyiv. She has since not been seen.

In this video, the Right Sector is trying to force a deputy of Lugansk to make a video calling for removal of Russian flags, and telling everyone to swear allegiance to the new government. They beat him, and handcuff him, in the beginning, and at 5:32 in the video they beat him more and tase him. At 6:30 they are telling the cameras that anyone who supports Russia will face the same fate.

I know of a deputy minister in the Dnipropetrovsk region (Eastern Ukraine) that was in a local government meeting just last week. She says that during the meeting, armed men came into the meeting and demanded all the workers sign papers stating they no longer wanted to be part of the Yanukovych party. After they left, another group of armed men came in and insisted they sign on to a particular party. While this group was still there, another group of armed men came in and insisted they sign on to another separatist party. Nobody is sure what party they belong to now, and such actions cause much fear in the ordinary people.

Of course, we also have Ukrainian news worrying people more about war with Russia. March 9, several Ukrainian news sources indicated that the Lviv military bases had mobilized against Crimea because Russia had declared war (not true on either account). Then there is this news report of an US Navy battle group entering the Black Sea (not true, either – only one previously scheduled ship entered on March 9).

We must ask, why doesn’t the US want us to know that Putin’s claims of “radical right-wing militants” in Ukraine are true?