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Archive for November, 2010

What does Wikileaks know about the Orange Revolution?

November 30th, 2010 No comments

image As WikiLeaks begins releasing over 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables this week, out of the 2,000 that originated out of Canada there’s at least one in the pile that deals with the ‘Canadian Ukrainian Community’ concerning the Orange Revolution:

Date: December 07, 2004

Source: Embassy Ottawa

Address: 490 Sussex Drive Ottawa, K1P 5T1

Tags: PGOV, PREL, PHUM, UP, CA, Canadian Ukrainian Community, Elections

No idea what the cable contains, but as the full data set gets released this week it will be very interesting to see what it’s about.

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Requiem for the Holodomor (Пaнaxидa – Гoлoдoмoр)

November 28th, 2010 2 comments

One of my favourite YouTube videographers was kind enough to film a service last night dedicated to the Holodomor by both Ukrainian Orthodox and Catholic bishops from St. Volodymyr in Toronto:

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Today is Ukrainian Famine and Genocide (Holodomor) Memorial Day 2010 in Canada

November 27th, 2010 1 comment

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Today Canada officially recognizes the Holodomor as genocide. Tonight a moment of silence from 19:32-19:33 for the 7-10 million who have perished:

This week, Ukrainians worldwide have been commemorating the 78th anniversary of the Great Famine of 1932-33, known as the Holodomor (Death by Hunger)

In the period 2005-2009, when Viktor Yushchenko was president of Ukraine, several archival collections on the Famine-Holodomor of 1932-33 made available to researchers supplemented earlier information gathered mainly from eyewitness reports. Perhaps the most important of these were reports from the Soviet secret police files (then called the OGPU, from 1934, it was known as the NKVD).

… the new president Viktor Yanukovych has denied that the Famine was an act of genocide. On the contrary, Yanukovych appears to adhere to the Russian perspective that famines were a general phenomenon across the Soviet grain growing regions in 1932, including the Volga region, Ukraine, the North Caucasus, and even Belarus.

It is true that famine was widespread in the spring and summer of 1932, but many events that took place later in the year, and in the brutal year of 1933, were unique to Ukraine and the North Caucasus, particularly the Kuban region, which was composed of about 60 per cent Ukrainians. And this is evident from the OGPU documents released over the past two decades.

The late James E. Mace called Ukraine a "post-genocidal society." This is a pertinent epithet for "Eastern Ukraine," or Soviet Ukraine as it existed in 1932-33, which never fully recovered. Present-day residents still have problems coming to terms with the crimes committed in 1932-33, because essentially this heartland of Ukraine was systematically "denationalized" and eradicated by the Soviet regime.

It has been a long and tireless journey to have this injustice recognized:

The Soviet regime’s implementation of the Holodomor as an action specifically against the Ukrainian people clearly fits this description and therefore should be easily regarded as an act of genocide. Unfortunately this is not yet a globally accepted view.

In 2006, the Ukrainian government under President Viktor Yushchenko took a monumental step by officially recognizing the Holodomor as an act of genocide. Many other nations followed suit, including Canada in 2008. However, one important country that refuses to recognize the Holodomor as a genocide is the Soviet Union’s successor, Russia, which on the contrary, has been very adamant in its denial of this categorization.

It has been going on almost as long as there’s been Ukrainians in Canada:

Winnipeg, home to a large community of Ukrainian immigrants, became a battleground between the people who were desperately trying to let the world know what Stalin was doing to their old country and the local communists who dismissed the reports of forced starvation as propaganda.

That battle was waged in public meetings and church halls and did not go unnoticed by this newspaper, which in 1933 carried at least four reports on what has come to be known as the 1932-33 Holodomor genocide.

Covering both sides of the story, the Winnipeg Free Press reported local communists as saying: "Only the idle and rich are starving in Russia" and those claiming there is "starvation in the Ukraine" are "lying."

In subsequent reports the Free Press did not quote the communists. Articles headlined Grim conditions in Ukraine are cause of worry (Sept. 27, 1933) and Soviet Methods are denounced by Ukraine Speaker: Prof. V. P. Timoshenko says peasants endure enslavement worse than in czarist rule (Dec. 25, 1933) continued to inform readers.

And the newspaper that helped deny the Holodomor to the world at time saw fitting to write about today, devoted an entire paragraph – in a book review.

Here are some events going on today:

Hamilton

Oshawa

Rochdale

Toronto

Winnipeg

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Holodomor news round-up – Nov 26, 2010

November 26th, 2010 1 comment

Here are a few news clips from highlighting Holodomor Awareness Week that ends tomorrow with the Holodomor memorial day:

Documenting a tragedy

The late James E. Mace called Ukraine a “post-genocidal society.” This is a pertinent epithet for “Eastern Ukraine,” or Soviet Ukraine as it existed in 1932-33, which never fully recovered and where present-day residents still have problems coming to terms with the crimes committed in 1932-33 because essentially this heartland of Ukraine was systematically “denationalized” and eradicated by the Soviet regime.

 

How to honor victims of Holodomor

But was it genocide? Given the blockade of Soviet Ukraine’s borders to prevent aid coming in, or anyone leaving, the significant grain exports that continued despite official knowledge of catastrophic famine conditions, the wholesale confiscation of all foodstuffs from Ukrainian lands, and how the Soviets and their shills orchestrated a campaign of Holodomor-denial for decades, the answer is certainly yes.

 

Edmontonians commemorate Ukrainian genocide – Holodomor ceremony honours victims of Stalin’s holocaust

“ten years it took me,” referring to the amount of time he spent researching, composing and then advocating to see Bill 37 passed, which proclaims every fourth Saturday in November “Ukrainian Famine and Genocide (Holodomor) Memorial Day.”

 

Revoke writer’s undeserved Pulitzer

A  number of western journalists reported from Ukraine, the most prominent of whom was Walter Duranty, of The New York Times. He was awarded a Pulitzer prize for his reporting as a foreign correspondent in Moscow. Unfortunately, his reports were full of deception. Duranty denied the famine and praised the Stalinist regime, during one of the most appalling genocides in history.

 

Candle lit commemorating Holodomor genocide that killed millions

The historical setting of the Holodomor was the aftermath of the Russian Revolution and the creation of the Soviet Union. Functionaries of the victorious Bolshevik side flexed their political muscles by wiping out independent farmers and nationalists …  The region was sealed off by army units, which allowed nobody to flee. Asked in an interview if there still are deniers of the Holodomor, Lysyk said, "Absolutely!". He listed politicians in modern Russia who interpret criticism of the old Soviet Union as criticism of Russia, plus some in Ukraine who want good relations with their powerful neighbour. "This is one of the reasons we, in the diaspora, need to build international pressure so they know they have to do what’s right — they have to follow their hearts and not try to curry favour with another country by altering their history."

 

 

M.P. Borys Wrzesnewskyj – Nov 22, 2010

 

M.P. James Bezan

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Holodomor Week Events 2010

November 24th, 2010 2 comments

Sorry this is a little late, but here is a list of Holodomor Week Events that are leading up to Saturday’s Holodomor memorial day:

 

Dates provided from the Ukrainian Canadian Congress.

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