#Official Commentary of Elena Melnik on latest round of escalation in ‘cultural war’ between Ukraine and Russian Federation
Since coming to power of nationalistic forces through unconstitutional coup d’etat in Ukraine, official Kiev unleashed not only a civil fratricidal war in east of the country, but also launched a massive information campaign against Russia, where culture has become a battleground.
The main tool in this campaign is the Ministry of Culture of the ‘independent’, which today can be named the Ministry of Propaganda. Today, thanks to this structure all the most cherished desires of radicals and nationalists come to life in Ukraine. As far back in 2014 the lists of artists, which are unwanted by the Kiev’s current regime, have been formed by the Ministry and submitted to the Security Service of Ukraine. These lists included both Russian and foreign actors, singers, musicians who pleased with their creativity Crimeans, visited the territory of Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics or simply condemned the fratricidal civil war in the east of Ukraine.
Last week it became known that the list was supplemented with another famous name: the SSU officially banned for 5 years from entering the country famous singer Natasha Korolyova, who, by the way, is a native of Kiev. The singer herself found out the news, which was a shock to her, from social networks. The actress said she plans to sue Kiev for the right of free entry to her country and has already applied to lawyers. Singer called the ban on entry to Ukraine the “outrage” and “deprivation of the true values for sake of which Ukrainians stood at Maidan.”
After Natasha Korolyova was declared “a threat to national security of Ukraine” and “a spy of the Kremlin”, Kiev reported about the cancellation of the singer’s large solo concert, which was supposed to take place on December 14. Of course, I do not know how of Natasha Korolyova’s creativity could threaten the national security of Ukraine, but perhaps the SSU saw some secret prophecy for the ‘independent’ in the song “Little Country”.
Commenting on the situation, the director of the palace “Ukraine”, where the concert was to take place, said that the country’s budget will lose half a million hryvnia because of the cancellation of the even. But this is of little concern to the Ukrainian politicians: the main thing is to annoy ‘muscovite’, even if it happens to their own detriment. I think that the question “Who has more to lose from such actions?” does not require an answer.
The Russian Foreign Ministry also reacted to Natasha Korolyova’s ban on entry into Ukraine’s territory. The official representative of the Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova ironically reacted to this news by writing in her Facebook page: “Gogol died on time, we must honestly admit. But it’s okay. Oleg Lyashko has experience of singing patriotic songs in Lugansk – they’ll be all right.” At the same time she pinned a video in which the odious Ukrainian politician sings the song “Victory Day”.
It seems that not only Gogol “died on time”, but also Taras Shevchenko, Ivan Franko, Skovoroda, Bohdan Khmelnytsky … After all, on the basis of Ukrainian logic, all of them today, too, would fall into the black list. I want to remind the Ukrainian nationalists, who are so fiercely boycotting Russian culture, that the great Kobzar Taras Shevchenko according the passport was Little Russian, and even wrote in Russian. All of his prose is written in Russian. He also tried to write poetry in Russian, when he lived in St. Petersburg! Ivan Franco, after whom the whole region in Ukraine is named, was Rusyn on passport. In the diary of Ivan Franko, which is located in one of Kiev’s museums, there is a record: “I was terribly insulted today, I was called Ukrainian, although everybody knows that I am Rusyn.” Grigory Skovoroda called himself “a barefoot Russian philosopher.” Well, I’m not even talking about the Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky, with whose assistance the Slavic lands of Little Russia (now Ukraine) with the Russian kingdom were reunited. All this is indisputable historical fact that the current rulers of Kiev refuse to accept.
Today politics has a greater influence on people’s lives, which are generally far from it. I think many would agree with my opinion that culture should stay out of politics. However, Ukrainian rulers turned it into a way of agitation and propaganda, depriving their own people of the right to choose.
But, as noted by the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova, Ukrainian land today is full of ‘talents’. And the Verkhovna Rada is a real hotbed in this regard. Every second Ukrainian politician by his behavior is very similar to a circus clown. The Session Hall has long ceased to be a place exclusively political work for the Ukrainian parliament. Those circus performances and dramas that are played out there are worthy the world’s circus arenas.
And while the deputy Lyashko will tour the Ukrainian cities, Petro Poroshenko with his passion for the performance of the national anthem could well go on a world tour. Who knows, maybe he’ll sing enough for another loan tranche?
Elena Melnik, the DPR People’s Council deputy