#Official Commentary of Alla Barkhatnova on Poland`s recognizing Volyn massacre as Genocide

More than 70 years later, one more mournful date appeared in the Polish calendar – July 11, Remembrance Day for the Victims of Genocide, committed by the OUN-UPA members.

Ukraine certainly does not agree with the position of the Polish Sejm. In accordance with the new state ideology, Ukraine is in great need of national heroes, namely those who were independence fighters. Even if there is nobody to fight with, one should contrive an aggressor and begin active resistance. After all, Ukraine is an absolutely artificial formation, separate individuals of which are trying to prove to the whole world that they are the real patriots of the country, herewith killing civilians. These “heroes” under the slogan “Ukraine above all” should rob people and kill all who do not share their position.

But as it turned out, almost all historical figures who left their marks on the country’s past, never regarded themselves as the Ukrainians. They were the Russians, the Little Russians,  Novoros (the New Russians), the Rusichi (the name of Ancient Russia inhabitants) who fought for Russian land with the invaders of all kinds. Most works of one of the Ukrainian literature pillars, Taras Shevchenko, are written in the Russian language.

While searching, Ukrainian apology-for historians chose one personage who is associated with violence and mass killings of civilians everywhere except for Western Ukraine. Stepan Bandera and his companions-in-arms are in “glorious” store of the Ukrainian historical past. Bandera was the Head of UPA, which committed the Volyn Massacre in 1943.

We can watch the new Ukrainian historians and journalists shake their fingers up and claim that the number of victims is exaggerated. We can listen to the Poles who do not understand why the Ukrainians refuse to recognize the mass killing of people in the Volyn Massacre as genocide, calling it “the Volyn Tragedy”.

Though Ukraine exists for a quarter-century as a sovereign state, none of its leaders have confessed this appalling crime or condemned the tendency towards glorification of OUN-UPA and its leaders.

One may wish to ask the present Polish leaders the question: why are your judgments so biased? Why do you condemn actions of the Ukrainian nationalists committed more than 70 years ago and do not want to see the crimes committed today? These people have been wandering with the OUN-UPA symbols up and down the streets of Ukraine for the last two years and a half. They are not simply waging the war against the civilian population in Donbass, they perpetrate genocide against those who express even the slightest disagreement with the position that Bandera is the Ukrainian national hero.

To my mind, one of the reasons for the Polish neighbours` “blindness” consists in the fact that modern Banderovites rushed to the East. However, as soon as Ukraine gets a desirable visa-free regime, all followers of the Volyn Massacre perpetrators will go to Europe. And their European pilgrimage will lie through Polish lands. Perhaps, this is why Poland recognized the Volyn Massacre as genocide, so that to have legal basis for refusing friendship with the newly-made Ukrainian heroes.

Alla Barkhatnova, People`s Council Deputy

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