Notes by Roger Annis, March 1, 2015
* The New Cold War: Ukraine and beyond is compiling reports and analysis of the murder of Russian political figure Boris Nemtsov. This includes the filmed comments in Feb. 2012 by Vladimir Putin to a Russian audience warning of violent provocations that would aim to destabilize Russia.
Nemtsov was a figure of some prominence in the government of Boris Yeltsin of the 1990s which oversaw the chaotic transition to capitalism of the state-run economy of the Soviet Union. A highlight of Nemtsov’s recent political career was his candidacy for the mayoralty of the city of Sochi in 2009. He won 14 per cent.
Western press is madly scrambling to find a convincing argument to pitch to its readers that the Russian government was responsible for Nemtsov’s murder. Associated Press is reporting rumour that Nemstov was on the verge of revealing explosive information of alleged direct involvement by the Russian government against Kyiv’s war against the people of eastern Ukraine. Among those reciting this particular angle is the Globe and Mail‘s Mark MacKinnon, The New York Times‘ Andrew Kramer, and… the wealthy Ukrainian billionaire Petro Poroshenko, aka President of Ukraine.
* Nemtsov was a harsh critic of the decision last March by the government of the Autonomous Region of Crimea to hold a referendum on the future of the region. Coincidentally, three items on the subject of Crimea have been posted to New Cold War.org in recent days
- A survey of Crimeans was published last month by the top German polling firm GFK. The survey was commissioned by several agencies, including an agency of the Government of Canada. Among the results: 93 per cent of Crimeans approve the decision one year ago to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. It is a remarkably embarrassing finding for the war lobby in Europe and North America. Which is why you will read nothing about it in Western mainstream propaganda press.
- A report of the protests in Crimea in the early 1990s against the policy of forced Ukrainianization which the capitalist, post-independence government in Kyiv sought to impose in the region. Crimea was the only region of Ukraine in which a majority of adults did not vote in favour of independence in December 1991. (Even the Donbas region voted strongly in favour.) They demanded a referendum on their future, which was refused all along by Kyiv. They did manage to achieve an elected, autonomous government, unique in Ukraine. It was this government which organized the March 16, 2014 secession referendum.
- ‘A prelude to pleading the Crimea case‘, by blog writer Pavel.
* Finally, note the notification of a research paper newly posted to New Cold War.org concerning the attitudes of Ukrainians today to World War Two:
In May 2014, Ivan Katchanovski of the University of Ottawa published a study of attitudes of todays’ Ukrainians to the period of World War Two. It is titled: ‘The Politics of World War Two in contemporary Ukraine‘.
As part of the study, Katchanovski commissioned a research survey which was conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS). This was published in February 2012.
Here is an excerpt from ‘The Politics of World War Two in contemporary Ukraine‘ (May 2014)”
The 2012 KIIS Survey shows that the absolute majority of the residents of Ukraine, given a choice of the various forces active in Ukraine during World War II, support mostly the Soviet Army (75%). In addition, 4% favor the Soviet partisans. The Ukrainian Insurgent Army [militia led by ultrarightist Stephan Bandera] is a choice of 8% of the respondents. In contrast, only 1% support the German Army. The relative majorities (41% each) of adult Ukrainians have negative views of both Joseph Stalin and [Bandera cohort] Roman Shukhevych during the war. However, a much greater percentage (32%) hold very positive or mostly positive views of the wartime activities of Stalin, compared to Shukhevych (14%).