DR. NATALIA VITRENKO:
Facing Terror under a Kiev Regime
‘Both Nazi and Fascist’
Natalia Vitrenko, doctor of economics, is a prominent political figure in Ukraine. She is currently chairman of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine (PSPU) and head of the All-Ukraine Public Women’s Organization Dar Zhizni (Gift of Life). She also served as People’s Deputy of Ukraine in the second and third convocations of the Supreme Rada (Parliament). She replied in writing on April 20, 2015 to questions sent to her by EIR.
The interview followed official threats to Dr. Vitrenko and her colleagues, and assassinations of leading opponents of the Kiev regime in mid-April (the box reprints her April 16 public statement). Lyndon LaRouche has declared that if any harm comes to Dr. Vitrenko, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland should be held responsible.
Questions were submitted in several groups, which we summarize here.
Our first set of questions cited Vitrenko’s intervention at the European Parliament on Feb. 26, 2014, four days after the violent coup in Kiev, when she warned that leftist parties in Ukraine were being physically attacked, and that “the neo-Nazis, in effect, have established their regime.” Today, in April 2015, assassinations and suicides of opposition figures are being reported from Ukraine. We asked how such terror against opponents of the post-coup regime has developed over the intervening months, what is the strength of fascist tendencies in the country, and whether President Petro Poroshenko and the Arseni Yatsenyuk government were doing anything against the fascists and their threats. In a second group of questions, we asked about Poroshenko’s image as a relative moderate, whether he were threatened by a coup, and if the United States were doing anything about the activity of fascists in Ukraine.
Thirdly, we asked Vitrenko to review her own political career and the current threats against her life.
Fourthly, we wanted to know if there were any Constitutional protections within Ukraine, or outside pressure to honor UN and European Union conventions, that could help.
Our final set of questions concerned the relationship between Ukraine’s current economic collapse and the growth of the fascist movement, as well as the current situation of Russian ethnic and Russian-speaking citizens of Ukraine. We referred to the historical phenomenon of “integral” nationalism in Ukraine, which was developed by the early 20th-Century Mussolini-like figure Dmytro Donstov, but rejected by such Ukrainian patriots as the universal genius Vladimir Vernadsky.
Dr. Vitrenko chose to reply with a single essay, which has been translated from Russian by Rachel Douglas.
The Fascist Coup of 2014
When I spoke at the European Parliament on Feb. 26, 2014, I showed that the Euromaidan had been organized in Kiev not for the purpose of bringing European values to Ukraine, but rather to establish a neo-Nazi dictatorship.
Several techniques for coming to power have occurred in world practice:
- democratic elections;
- so-called color revolutions;
- coups d’état using right-wing radical elements, such as Nazis or Islamists;
- coups d’état by the military.
In 2004, the Orange Revolution made Victor Yushchenko President of Ukraine. It was organized and financed by the West. Yushchenko used his powers to legalize the Ukrainian radical nationalists, make heroes of them, and popularize them to the utmost. Victor Yanukovych, who was elected President in 2010, and the Party of Regions under his leadership, not only failed to act against the neo-Nazi and neo-fascist parties and movements in Ukraine, but even abetted their political popularization and the entry of the neo-Nazi Svoboda Party, first into local councils in western Ukraine, and then, in the Fall of 2012, into the national Parliament.
During Yanukovych’s years in office, night-time torch marches, demolition of [Soviet-era] monuments, insults to veterans of the Great Patriotic War, and media promotion of collaborationists from the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and Ukrainian Insurgent Army (OUN-UPA) such as [Stepan] Bandera, [Roman] Shukhevych, [Yevhen] Konovalets, and others, became standard features of Ukrainian political life. Government agencies did nothing to hinder the dissemination and popularization of the misanthropic ideology of Ukrainian “integral” nationalism (fascism), formulated by [Mykola] Mikhnovsky, [Dmytro] Dontsov, and [Mykola] Stsiborsky. The heart of this set of beliefs is the notion that a nation is a species in nature, where the strongest will survive. The Ukrainian nation is forged only through struggle. The main enemy is Moscow (Russia). Their slogans are “Ukraine for Ukrainians,” “Ukraine above all,” “Glory to the nation—death to the enemies!” and “Our power will be terrible to the enemies of Ukraine.”
These slogans were further developed during the Euromaidan: “Moskaliv na nozhi, komunyaku na hillyaku,” meaning “Knife the Muscovites, hang the Communists.”
The Progressive Socialist Party, as well as the women’s organization Dar Zhizni, both of which I head, campaigned actively against neo-Nazism and neo-fascism in Ukraine. We led street protests throughout Ukraine, organized conferences at the regional, national, and international level, and I waged a grueling, three-year court fight against the neo-Nazi decree #75/2010, issued by President Yushchenko. We published books and newspapers, posted material online, and warned the world community about the threat ensuing from the political rehabilitation of Nazism and fascism in Ukraine.
But Yanukovych and the Party of Regions had plans to win the 2015 Presidential election by making sure that his runoff opponent would be Svoboda Party leader Oleh Tyahnybok. Therefore they were very tough in putting a stop to our campaign.
Literally from the first day of the Euromaidan, Dec. 1, 2013, its ideological nature was absolutely clear from the numbers 88 and 14, the red-black Nazi flags and slogans, the swastika, Celtic cross, and Wolfsangel symbols, and the portraits of collaborationists who had been agents of Hitler’s Abwehr (Konovalets, Bandera, Shukhevych). The main slogan of the Euromaidan was the Banderite cry “Glory to Ukraine—to the heroes glory!”, which had been adopted at the Second Conference of the OUN in April 1941 as the equivalent of Hitler’s “Heil Hitler!—Sieg heil!”
That day, Dec. 1, 2013, was also when cobblestones, clubs, Molotov cocktails, chains, and burning tires appeared at the “peaceful” Euromaidan. As of Feb. 18, 2014, there were firearms, as well.
Leaders from the United States and the EU countries visited Kiev repeatedly and could see all this with their own eyes. They were also receiving information from social and political activists inside Ukraine. But what suited the United States was a seizure of power in Ukraine according to Scenario 3, listed above. They had prepared and financed this for a long time, and ultimately organized it.
Today’s Political Terror
After the power of the Euromaidan was legitimized, then political terror, the trampling of democratic rights and freedoms, zombification of the population through the media, political “cleansing” operations (called “lustration”), and the imprisonment or physical annihilation of dissenters, all became the ideology and practice of the new regime.
Ukraine has been drenched in blood by civil war in the Southeast. The Minsk Accords of Feb. 2, 2015, and UN Security Council resolution [#2202] of Feb. 17, 2015 [endorsing those Accords], only slightly calmed the conflict, but did not resolve the fundamental problems from which it arose.
The whole world had been shocked by the events of May 2, 2014 in Odessa, when the participants in a peaceful protest were massacred, burned alive in the Trade Unions Building. On May 9, 2014, a holiday demonstration in Mariupol was fired upon. Who was guilty? Who was punished? Those questions remain unanswered. The Ukrainian ultras were organized into “volunteer” battalions, armed, and dispatched to the Donbass. The reports on their atrocities and pillaging are stunning. They barely answer to the central authorities. And they are financed by the “oligarchy”—wealthy businessmen.
The reign of terror under the Ukrainian regime is now typified by the recent series of “suicides,” followed by outright murders of opposition politicians and journalists: V. Semenyuk-Samsonenko, M. Chechetov, S. Melnyk, A. Peklushenko, S. Valter, O. Kalashnikov, O. Buzyna, and others. Ukrainian Labor Party leader A. Bondarchuk, a People’s Deputy of Ukraine in the third and fourth convocations of the Supreme Rada, has been arrested. Slander and persecution by law enforcement agencies continue against the leaders of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine (myself, N. Vitrenko) and the Communist Party of Ukraine (P. Symonenko). Via the Mirotvorets (“Peacekeeper”) website, Ukrainian law enforcement people, in gross violation of the presumption of innocence, create an image of tens of thousands of Ukrainian citizens as “enemies of the people,” thus inciting the neo-Nazis to physically eliminate those whose names are listed there, as well as members of their families.
My evaluation of the current Ukrainian regime is that it is both Nazi and fascist. It qualifies as “Nazi,” because those in power are building a monoethnic state, under slogans like “Ukraine above all,” “Glory to the nation—to the heroes glory”; and “fascist,” because of the system of governance: the absence of democracy and the harshest possible suppression of dissent.
The outward “moderation” of President Poroshenko does not reflect who he is at heart; he is not truly distinct from the right-wing radicals. It’s merely that as President, he does certain work that the radicals could not accomplish in the street: Through his decrees and the bills he has introduced into Parliament, he is continuing to make heroes of those who collaborated with Hitler. He automatically gives heroic status to, and popularizes, the brutal methods of annihilating civilians which the OUN Nazis used, both during the German occupation and afterwards, continuing to terrorize Ukraine until 1956.
Unlike a Nazi with a Molotov cocktail in his hand, the President is supposed to be the guarantor of Constitutional rights. He, and the law enforcement agencies subordinate to him, receive budget allocations for the purpose of defending the rights and freedoms of all the citizens of Ukraine, but in practice it is all used to crank up repression against those they don’t like.
Neither the U.S. State Department, nor officials from Western European countries, nor the OSCE, nor the Council of Europe, nor the European Parliament are doing anything whatsoever to counter the neo-Nazi processes in Ukraine. Yet international law (the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the International Pact on Civil and Political Rights, the European Convention on the Defense of Human Rights and Basic Freedoms, the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, the Durban Declaration, etc.) obligate the world community to intervene in Ukraine’s political process and carry out de-Nazification.
The countries of the West, however, are caught between their obligations under international law, and the political demands of the United States.
An Economist in Politics
My political career began in 1994, when I won election to Parliament from the Konotop Electoral District, Sumy Region. Holding a doctoral degree in economics and, from 1996 on, as the leader of a party, the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine, I strongly opposed the domestic and foreign policies imposed on Ukraine by the International Monetary Fund. But I not only exposed the negative side of the “IMF reforms”; I also proposed a constructive alternative: a coherent economic program, which I prepared jointly with a group of economists and presented in Parliament in October 1995. I developed and introduced into the Supreme Rada of Ukraine a set of laws for the implementation of this program. In 1998, my party surpassed the 4% level, allowing us to enter Parliament and form our own caucus. In 1999, I became the first woman in the history of Ukraine to run for the Presidency. All the public opinion polls showed that I had a chance of winning in a second round, but the assassination attempt against me on Oct. 2, 1999, and the ensuing media campaign to discredit me, allowed [Leonid] Kuchma to remain in power, while I received only 11% of the vote.
I n 2004, I ran for President of Ukraine a second time, but the application of color revolution techniques prevented democratic elections.
Besides leading my political party, I have been elected to the leadership of several public organizations. One of them is the All-Ukraine Public Women’s Organization Dar Zhizni, founded in 2000. This organization provided humanitarian aid to orphans and engaged in human rights work to defend women against discrimination and problems of daily life.
In April 2014, we decided to direct the capabilities of our women’s organization to stepped-up human rights activity. Funds were granted to us by the Russian Fund for the Defense of the Rights of Compatriots Abroad, under a contract we concluded with them, for the purpose of setting up regional human rights defense centers.
This then became the pretext for the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) to initiate a criminal case against our organization, slander me and our activists, and ascribe to us crimes related to “financing separatists and terrorists.” The absurdity of this fraud lies not only in the misrepresentation of our goals, but also in the fact that the organization’s accounts were frozen, so that we were unable to receive a single kopeck from anybody. The SBU, and the media under its control, have distorted everything, despite the fact that I provided our contract and all the required documents, and twice gave detailed testimony during interrogations at the SBU.
At the June 3, 2014 court session regarding the freezing of our account, the SBU and the prosecutor’s office were able to counter my facts and arguments only with conjectures, guesses, and fantasies. Nonetheless, in violation of the principle of the presumption of innocence, which is enshrined in Article 62 of the Constitution of Ukraine, other Ukrainian laws, and Ukraine’s international obligations, I am being portrayed as an accomplice of terrorists and separatists. This serves to incite right-wing radicals to eliminate me physically.
Therefore I was compelled, on April 14, 2015, to appeal to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General V.N. Shokin, demanding that he defend my rights and freedoms: above all, the right to life and the inviolability of my person. There has not yet been any reply.
As for the legality of the activity of our women’s organization, it is guaranteed under Article 36 of the Constitution of Ukraine, as well as the Ukrainian Law on Public Organizations. There have been no claims of illegal activity against our organization. There is only the SBU falsification, disseminated for the purpose of persecuting me personally, as well as the activists of our organization.
I am truly grateful to the Schiller Institute and the activists of the LaRouche movement for their support. For two decades now, we have been fighting together for a progressive transformation of humanity, and for peace. This is extremely important for me, and for the Ukrainian public. Those wielding authority in Ukraine now understand, that they will not be able to do away with me quietly.
Ethnic Hatred in an Economic Crisis
The socioeconomic crisis in Ukraine is deepening. The IMF loan, with draconian social-sector conditionalities, only compounds the problems. Citizens’ exasperation and outrage is on the rise. But, what will it lead to? On the one hand, the neo-Nazi movements are the bulwark of the current regime, and they are politically or physically eliminating dissent; but, on the other hand, the tens of thousands of right-wing radical militants, who are armed and have the experience of fighting in the Donbass, represent the real threat of a coup along the lines of Scenario 4, above. There is resistance to the fascist tendencies, but the forces are unequal. The repressive machine of the state is more effective in achieving its goals.
My view of the situation of the Russian-speaking and culturally Russian population in Ukraine, is that it is being subjected to ethnocide. For the purpose of implementing Dontsov’s ideology of expelling or annihilating the Russian ethnic group, as being alien to these Nazis, the Ukrainian Parliament has declared Russia to be an aggressor nation. While Ukrainian passports do not indicate people’s ethnic origin, the census taken 14 years ago showed that there were 8 million ethnic Russians, out of a total population of 48 million at that time, living in Ukraine. Russian speakers, however, made up 58% of the population. The jamming of Russian TV channels, banning of Russian TV programs, cancellation of tours by Russian artists, expunging of Russian language and literature courses from school programs, the Parliament’s adoption on April 9, 2015 of laws on “decommunization” (declaring the Soviet regime of 1917-91 to have been criminal in both the USSR and the Ukrainian SSR) and the transformation of the OUN-UPA collaborationists into heroes, all creates a legal basis for a monstrous intensification of ethnocide, since Russia today is the legal successor of the Soviet Union.
I thank you for the opportunity to express my opinion about the situation in Ukraine. Please understand, that there are no simple answers to complex questions. I hope that my replies will help in finding a peaceful resolution of not only Ukraine’s problems, but those of all mankind, and to prevent a Third World War.
 The Great Patriotic War signifies the Eastern Front in Europe during World War II, 1941-45.
 “British Imperial Project in Ukraine: Violent Coup, Fascist Axioms, Neo-Nazis,” EIR, May 16, 2014, pp. 23-27.
 Ukrainian Presidential Decree 75/2010, dated January 28, 2010, was titled “On the celebration of participants in the struggle for Ukraine’s Independence in the 20th Century.” It glorified the OUN-UPA.
 The figure “88” denotes “Heil Hitler,” since “h” is the eighth letter of the alphabet, while “14” refers to a white supremacist slogan, 14 words in length.
 The Banderite OUN flag is red over black.
 Natalia Vitrenko, “Ukrainian Patriots Expose EU Support for Neo-Nazi Coup,” EIR, March 7, 2014.
 May 9 is the anniversary of Victory over fascism, celebrated the day after VE Day in western Europe.
 The Donbass, short for the Donetsk Coal Basin, spans two regions of Ukraine—Donetsk and Lugansk.
 Susan Welsh, “IMF Applies ‘Greek’ Austerity Formula to War-Ravaged Ukraine,” EIR, March 20, 2015; Natalia Vitrenko, “Report from Ukraine: ‘Let us end this nightmare, and turn to building things,’ ” presentation to Citizens Electoral Council of Australia conference, March 29, 2015.