There are two things I want to say about Oleh Tyahnybok.
(Two more things, that is. My earlier post on him is here, my tiny GV translation of what other people think of his victory - here, and a misplaced critical remark from a reader from Denver, Colorado - here.)
First, poor Taras Shevchenko. In the post-election Ukrainska Pravda interview (UKR), Tyahnybok says this to justify his preference for the word zhyd (kike):
- But, as it turns out, the word zhyd is part of normal vocabulary for a Svoboda representative, while in Kyiv it's perceived as a sign of anti-Semitism.
- So ban Shevchenko's [Kobzar] in Kyiv! Some people perceive it like this, but I don't! Open Borys Hrynchenko's dictionary - and you'll see there what this word means. It's not a prohibited word! [...]
It's very simple: just like the Soviets before him, Tyahnybok is exploiting Shevchenko.
Here's an annotation from the 1988 Shevchenko's poetry volume that I was reading a few weeks ago - a children's edition, by the way, published by Veselka ("Rainbow") publishing house:
Запродана жидам віра... -
Йдеться про те, що польські магнати прагнули покатоличити українське населення, щоб у такий спосіб мати на нього більший вплив і поступово асимілювати. Нерідко шляхта здавала церкви в аренду євреям, які збирали плату за вхід до церкви, а потім частину одержаних грошей шляхта привласнювала. В "Запорожской старине" І. Срезнєвського розповідається: "Ужасно было в ту годину состояние украинцев. Права их были нарушены; вера попрана; церкви и монастыри, издавна сооруженные, иные запустели, иные запечатаны".
The faith that had been sold out to the [Jews] -
[The passage] is about the Polish magnates' desire to catholicize the Ukrainian population, in order to have more influence on it and to eventually assimilate it. Often, the [szlachta] leased churches to Jews, who were charging money for entering the church, and then part of the money received was taken by the szlachta. In I. Sreznyevsky's "Zaporozhye Antiquity," there is this account: "Horrible was the condition of Ukrainians in that time. Their rights were violated; their faith ravished; churches and monasteries, constructed long ago, some stood empty, others were locked down."
The message of the note, I suppose, was this: Dear children, don't be surprised by the word zhydy - Jews were evil, but they were nowhere near as evil as the Poles and Catholics.
Absolutely amazing, too, is that there were people back in the Soviet times who had the guts to quote someone bemoaning the ruined Ukrainian churches - ruined by, you see, the Poles, not the Soviets.
Here's the next annotation from my Shevchenko book - about Ukraine's Greek Catholics:
прибічники унії. Унія - об'єднання православної церкви України й Білорусії з католицькою церквою, здійснене з ініціативи Ватікану і проголошене церковним собором у Бресті 1596 р. Унія була знаряддям зміцнення політичного панування шляхетської Польщі на Україні та в Білорусії. Шляхта прагнула покатоличити українське й білоруське населення, розірвати його зв'язки з російським народом. Її підтримувала верхівка українських феодалів. Визвольна війна 1648-1654 рр. і возз'єднання України з Росією поклали край унії на Лівобережній Україні. Наприкінці XVIII ст. внаслідок визвольної боротьби українського народу унію ліквідовано на Правобережжі. На Західній Україні уніатська церква існувала до 1946 р., коли церковний собор у Львові проголосив її скасування. На Закарпатті унію ліквідовано 1949 р. Нині уніатська церква продовжує свою реакційну діяльність у США і Канаді.
The Uniates -
supporters of the uniya. Uniya is the union of the Orthodox church of Ukraine and Belarus with the Catholic church, which was carried out at the Vatican's initiative and announced by the church synod in Brest in 1596. Uniya served as a tool of strengthening the power of the Polish szlachta in Ukraine and Belarus. The szlachta aimed at catholicizing the Ukrainian and Belarusian populations and breaking off their ties with the Russian people. It was supported by the high-ranking Ukrainian feudal lords. The 1648-1654 Liberation War and the re-unification of Ukraine with Russia put an end to uniya in the Left Bank Ukraine. At the end of the 18th century, as a result of the Ukrainian people's fight for liberation, uniya was liquidated in the Right Bank region. In Western Ukraine, the Uniate church existed until 1946, when the church synod in Lviv announced its dissolution. In Transcarpathia, uniya was liquidated in 1949. Currently, the Uniate church continues its reactionary activities in the USA and Canada.
Here the message must have been this: Those evil Diaspora folks, children, they are still plotting to break up the union of the two brotherly nations, Russians and Ukrainians - beware!
Both messages are conveniently transmitted with the use of Shevchenko, via his Tarasova Nich ("The Night of Taras") - a poem written circa 1840...
And here's Oleh Tyahnybok some 165 years later, in 2004, looking like a small-town actor, making a passionate speech about zhydva and moskali, feeling safe in Shevchenko's shadow - although this speech later got him kicked out of Yushchenko's "Our Ukraine":
The other thing about Tyahnybok that I wanted to mention is his sovok obsession with pyataya grafa, the fifth line in the Soviet passport that indicated the person's ethnicity - and which Tyahnybok would like to have re-introduced in Ukrainian passports and birth certificates. Here's a quote (UKR) from his 2005 speech, posted on his site:
[...] We all remember very well those old Soviet passports that still had this line. And each one of us was a Ukrainian, a Pole, a Belarusian, a Lithuanian. Very regrettably, after Ukraine gained its independence, this line disappeared from our passports. Basically, our ethnicity was stolen from us. [...]
All in all, this is explained by a simple philosophical saying: what's unnamed does not exist.
According to the latest census, there are over 78 percent of us Ukrainians in Ukraine, but we do not really have a proper identification. Actually, this line and this identification is missing from birth certificates as well as from other documents. The "ethnicity" line in the passports was taken away from us, and no one had asked Ukrainians for permission. It was nothing but a political decision. The return of this line will definitely further preservation and prosperity of the Ukrainian nation.
Basically, if it goes on like this, now that they took away the ethnicity line in the passport, we can expect the victory of globalism. After the "ethnicity" line, they might take away our last names, our first names and patronymics, and we'll only have our identification codes [used for taxation purposes] left to us.
[Dear friends], we are not America to pile everyone together. A Ukrainian should remain a Ukrainian, a Pole should remain a Pole, a Gagauz - a Gagauz, an Uzbek - an Uzbek. The All-Ukrainian Association Svoboda insists on returning the "ethnicity" line to the passport and other documents. And, if necessary, we insist on holding an all-Ukrainian referendum. [...]
Now that we have a country of our own and are all Ukrainian citizens, now is the time, of course, to revert to old Soviet ways and start it all over again. We aren't America, no.
(A good antidote against Tyahnybok's crap is this beautiful essay by Zadie Smith, published in The New York Review of Books on Feb. 26: Speaking in Tongues.)
That's all I have to say about this useless and embarrassing sovok for now - until he wins some other Ukrainian region, the way he has just won Ternopil.