BOROTBISM

The Classic History Of The Ukrainian Revolution

The 1954 classic study of the Ukrainian Revolution, Borotbism by Ivan Maistrenko has just been republished in a new edition.  It was one of the first significant accounts of the revolution in English.

The Borotbists were the left faction of the Ukrainian Party of Socialists Revolutionaries, the largest party of the Ukrainian Revolution.  Maistrenko was a leading figure in the generation that participated in the revolution of 1917-1921. A socialist activist, partisan and journalist he played an leading role during the cultural renaissance  – Ukrainization in the 1920s.  A survivor of the gulag and the Nazi’s he wrote numerous works on Soviet politics, history and socialist theory.

We republish below the forerword to the book by Ukrainian historian Marko Bojcun, along with an extract from the introduction by Christopher Ford editor of the new edition, which now also includes a biography of Maistrenko and special supplement on Soviet responses to Borotbism.   

Borotbism is available:

For Europeans, the best way to buy the book is via: (https://www.ibidem.eu/de/borotbism-a-chapter-in-the-history-of-the-ukrainian-revolution.html).

For those based in the U.S. and Canada, the easiest way is via Columbia University Press: (https://cup.columbia.edu/book/borotbism/9783838211077).

Yuliya Yurchenko: author of Ukraine and the Empire of Capital, writes:

‘This book is an important and a timely contribution to the reinvigorated discussions on the contested history of Ukraine and trajectories of its indigenous social movements against imperial rule. In his meticulous genealogy of Borot’bism, Maistrenko shows that the Russian revolution was not Russian alone, that it – among others – absorbed the Ukrainian revolution. His text articulately reminds us how the powerful shape and colonize history – something that is so important for our understanding of Ukraine-Russia relations as they still unfold today. This text on Borot’bism – an indigenous communist movement – brings to the fore an important narrative of the country’s struggle against Russian imperialism, a struggle for national self-determination as a socialist republic of an independent Ukraine. The new foreword and introduction by experts on Ukraine’s fight for self-determination, Marko Bojcun and Christopher Ford, explain the significance of the text and historicize the movement and Maistrenko’s role in it. A very important text for anyone trying to see Ukraine’s emancipation struggle as experienced by those who fought it, spoke its language(s), felt its pulse; something that will be of benefit for many western readers.’

MARKO BOJCUN

Foreword

This new edition of Ivan Maistrenko’s 1954 study of the Ukrainian Revolution is a welcome and timely contribution to the English language literature. Appearing on the centenary of that epochal event that has come to be known as “the Russian Revolution” it provides valuable insights into its multinational and regional complexities and the diversity of the communist movement itself. Christopher Ford has also given us a new introduction here that will help the reader situate Maiestenko’s work in the broader context of a modern Ukraine emerging from an era of declining European imperialisms and ascendant movements for universal emancipation.

Borotbist – Paper of the Poltava UCP (Borotbists)

Maistrenko was not just a witness, but an active participant in the revolution and civil war of those years in Ukraine. He challenges several misleading generalisations and stereotypes that have come to dominate the historiography of 1917 and its aftermath. First, he shows on the basis of the Ukrainian case that this revolution was not Russian alone, nor just a working class achievement, but a richly diverse “festival of the oppressed” that broke out all over the Empire and drew into action millions of peasants and workers, nations and national minorities subjugated by Tsarism and Russian imperialism. It was not merely the arena of professional revolutionaries pursuing state power in Petrograd and Moscow, but the efforts of workers, soldiers and peasants in cities, towns and villages alike trying to overcome the major obstacles to their self-emancipation: the War, land hunger, the collapse of industry brought on by the War and national oppression.

Maistrenko illuminates this tumultuous process in Ukraine, focussing in particular on the rural population, the landless peasantry and the agricultural proletariat. He traces the evolution of the Ukrainian Party of Socialist Revolutionaries, which became the largest political party by far in Ukraine at the head of repeated mobilisations of the peasantry in 1917 and during the civil war. He shows how and why the UPSR, a party with roots in the populist and anarcho-socialist traditions, was shaken and split by the events of that period and eventually yielded the Borot’bisty, an indigenous Ukrainian communist movement.

Maistrenko’s work helps us to understand how the Ukrainian Revolution differed from the Russian as well as how they intersected, and how the Bolsheviks could come to hold state power in Ukraine at the end of the Civil War only by occupying it militarily and subordinating all three communist parties then operating in it to the Russian Communist Party headquartered in Moscow.

The Ukrainian Communist Party (Borot’bisty), as opposed to the Communist Party (Bolsheviks) of Ukraine, fought for an independent Ukrainian soviet republic allied through federation with the Russian soviet republic. It sought membership as an independent party in the Third (Communist) International. The Borot’bisty subsequently played a critical role in the life of their country after their own party was dissolved and they joined the official CP(B)U. They championed Ukraine’s cultural revival and its quest for greater political autonomy within the Soviet Union. Practically all of them perished in Stalin’s purges in the 1930s.

Borotbist leader Oleksandr Shumsky memorial plaque in Ukraine.

Ivan Maistrenko was one Borot’bist who survived to tell their story, a chapter in the history of the Revolution that might otherwise been buried in Stalin’s mass graves. Moreover, he has left us with more than a political history, but also a personal one with recollections of events he witnessed on the ground and of comrades with whom he worked in the underground, the peasant brigades and the insurgent republic of his own locality. Maistrenko was fluent in Ukrainian and Russian, as well as German by the time he wrote this history. That gave his access to the original documentary sources when he came to compose this study in the early 1950s.

We can now look back on the epoch-changing upheaval of the Revolution a hundred years ago through Maistrenko’s unique examination of its eruption in Ukraine. 

Foreword author:  Professor Marko Bojcun has written extensively on Ukrainian history, politics and affairs, and is author of The Workers Movement and the National Question in Ukraine 1880-1920.

A partisan brigade in Poltava in 1918

CHRISTOPHER FORD

Introduction

Volodymyr Vynnychenko, one of the most well-known Ukrainian leaders in the 20th century, coined the phrase vsebichne vyzvolennia — “Universal liberation”.[i] By this he meant the “Universal (social, national, political, moral, cultural, etc.) liberation” of the worker and peasant masses.  This striving for “such a total and radical liberation” represented the “Ukrainian Revolution” in the broad historical sense. However the expression the “Ukrainian Revolution” may also be used in the narrower sense, of the great upheavals aimed at this object, the most noteworthy of which marked the years 1917-1920.

Vpered (Forward) paper edited by Maistrenko after WW2

According to Vynnychenko, the “Universal current” which strove to realize this historical tendency of the revolution comprised the most radical of the socialist parties, the Ukrainian Social Democratic Workers’ party (Independentists), or Nezalezhnyky, the Ukrainian Party of Socialist Revolutionaries-Borotbisty and the oppositional currents amongst the Bolsheviks in Ukraine. 

The Ukrainian Revolution cannot be understood without sharing the hopes, disappointments and aspirations of its participants. One such participant in those dramatic events that form the subject of this book is its author Ivan Maistrenko. His book tells the story of the revolution through the history of one element of that “Universal current” — the Borotbisty.[ii] One of the first significant accounts of the revolution in English, Borotbism is a unique work whose republication comes at a time of increased interest in Ukraine. Yet amidst the array of materials now available to the reader, there remains a deficiency with regard to the pivotal role of Ukrainian Revolutionary socialism in those years.

This problem of the revolution’s historiography is not new and its continuation makes this bookas important today as when it first appeared in 1954. Maistrenko’s work remains the principal study of the Borotbisty, the majority left wing of the Ukrainian Party of Socialist-Revolutionaries – the largest party of the revolution.[iii]

The Ukrainian Revolution from today’s vantage point.

Ivan Maistrenko’s Borotbism compels us to return to this ‘rebirth of a nation’ not merely to mark the 100th anniversary of the Ukrainian Revolution but also in recognition that a review of the past is essential to grasp the challenges of the present. This can be seen in the changed circumstances in which Maistrenko’s book is presented in contrast to when it first appeared in 1954.[iv] Since the Euromaidan in 2014 and the Russo-Ukraine war there has been a surge of interest in Ukraine; this is a progressive development it is however coupled with new depths of retrogression as regards attitudes to the Ukrainian question.

Recent years have demonstrated how Russia’s imperial past continues to echo into what was presumed to be the “post-imperial” present; we have witnessed a revival of a narrative advanced by the White movement during the Civil War. Its advocates base their interpretation of the Ukrainian question on a set of key principles:

1) “Great Russia, “Little Russia” and “Belarus” are three branches of the one Russian people,

2.) Russian language and culture is the common achievement of one, leading Russian people;

3) “Little Russia”, i.e. Ukraine, is an inseparable part of a unitary Russia;

4); the idea of a separate Ukrainian nation is manufactured by foreign powers for the dismemberment and weakening of Russia.[v]

Interpretations of the Ukrainian question by contemporary Russian leaders are essentially the same; they have equipped the current form of the Russian state power with ideas inherited from their Tsarist ancestors. The reburial of General Denikin in 2005 with full military honors at Moscow’s Donskoi monastery was an apt symbol of this reconnection with Empire.

That Denikin secured Western sponsors for the Russian nationalist cause is understandable; that Vladimir Putin can harness support of the contemporary European far-right is no surprise.[vi] What is significant, and perhaps surprising to some, is the support by sections of the left for restoring the Tsarist colony in Ukraine of Novorossiya (New Russia).[vii] Stalinism was imbued with the Russian nationalist tradition, and whilst current neo-Stalinism assists Kremlin foreign policy with its veneer of an “anti-fascist struggle in Ukraine”, the Russian oligarchic elite make no pretense of a communist camouflage in acting as heir and guardian of the imperialist policies of the Tsars.[viii]

Symbol of Russian Imperialism – A statue of the Tsar toppled during the Ukrainian Revolution

Maistrenko’s Borotbism challenges this retrogression; it repudiates the falsification and revision of the array of self-appointed experts on Ukraine that have surfaced, and who reduce the Ukrainian Revolution of 1917-21 to a series of failed states sponsored by foreign powers.[ix] It reasserts the history of the revolution as a struggle for social and national emancipation by the Ukrainian people themselves.

Such conflicts over the history of Ukraine are not new and often become focal points for the greater conflict between Ukrainian nationalism and Russian chauvinism; the contemporary controversies are themselves intimately linked to the recurrence of the Ukrainian question with it domestic and international considerations. The current context in which the Ukrainian question is posed is one that Maistrenko foresaw with remarkable accuracy in the 1950’s.[x] That imperialist expansion was generating a future challenge to Moscow’s hegemony, where each national bureaucracy would one day come into conflict with the Russian bureaucracy. In addition he foresaw that the Soviet bureaucracy would welcome the restoration of private-capitalism, provided it ensured their continued privilege. It was this re-composition of a nouveau nomenklatura that emerged after the Ukrainian resurgence of 1989-1991 attained formal independence.[xi]

This is the root of the current complexities in which the big business power of the oligarchs has been the dominant influence on the politics and economy of Ukraine. Whilst in the face of western rivalry, Russia has continued to seek to protect its business interests and influence in Ukraine, which is viewed from the strategic perspective as part of the “greater Russian world” within the “near abroad” of post-USSR space.[xii] Maistrenko considered “Stalinism, the Modern Form of Russian Imperialism”; under Putin this has taken on a new form of appearance.[xiii] Motivated by what it views as its national security interests Russia’s rulers continue to adopt methods of encroachment to protect their regime from destabilizing influences and have revived the old “gendarme of European reaction”.[xiv] This role of policing of the territory of empire was deployed following the Euromaidan in 2014.

Euromaidan saw the mobilization of wide sections of society aspiring to greater democracy, equality and human rights. This political revolution toppled President Yanukovych, driving a wedge into the neo-colonial power relations Russia exercised in Ukraine. In response, the deposed Donetsk clan of oligarchs and those connected to them; concerned for their vested interests instigated the separatist movement. This revanchist movement converged with the interests of Russia’s elite, the Kremlin organizing, arming and directly reinforcing its proxy forces.[xv] The ensuing war in Donbas in 2014 has echoes of the 1914 occupation of eastern Galicia by the Russian Imperial Army. Viewed as the piedmont of the Ukrainian movement, the Tsar declared it “a Russian land from time immemorial”. With support of the small groups of local Russian nationalists they set about forcibly Russifying the populace and persecuting Jews. Putin has proved no more attractive to Ukrainians than the Tsar, and the reach of Russian ultra-nationalists has suffered a long historical retreat from Lviv to Luhansk.

The Russian intervention in 2014 posed an existential threat to Ukraine. It generated a surge in national consciousness with the mass self-activity flowing from Euromaidan into a resistance that checked and isolated the aggression.  But whilst the occupants of 1914 contributed to the fermenting of the 1917 revolution, the 2014 aggression assisted in the subverting of the original ideals of the Euromaidan revolution. Hopes for social and democratic change have been inhibited by the failure to dislodge the oligarchic elite, who have used the cover of the necessities of war to safeguard their own position and mold policies that serve their needs.

This situation has also flowed into the history of the Ukrainian Revolution, which is refracted through the prism of current politics. In this context Maistrenko’s Borotbism is more than just an historical document. The debates during and after the revolution of 1917-1921 about the relative importance of national and/or social emancipation are of great importance in contemporary Ukraine. As a consequence of recent events Ukraine has veered further from Moscow’s orbit, naturally posing new considerations of how the nation defines itself, which in turn have become enmeshed with how history is understood.

A new turn in the approach to history has taken place since 2014, which poses such choices as between “two models of historical memory – the patriotic nation-building and the communist-imperialist”.[xvi] After many years in which the history of Ukraine has faced severe constraints, during which Stalinist and Russophile political forces have fiercely resisted a Ukrainian alternative. In this context the recognition now afforded the Ukrainian Revolution can be considered a progressive development.  Nevertheless this decolonization of history whilst seeking to escape past constraints is simultaneously fostering new ones set out in an official state historical narrative overseen by the group of publicists who run the Ukrainian Institute for National Remembrance (UINR).[xvii]

In the new state narrative the revolution of 1917-1921 is placed within a unilineal historical development towards statehood. Instead of a fetishized Lenin and Stalin we are presented with Petlyura, Skoropadsky and above all Bandera, as if they alone represent the Ukrainian movement and almost Ukraine itself.[xviii]

In this new narrative, movements such as the Borotbisty are outsiders from a revolution of which they were a vital element. The continuity and similarity of approach by the current nationalist and former Stalinist narratives is striking. This is illustrated by their treatment of the national cultural revival of the 1920s, driven forward by former Borotbisty and other Ukrainian left-wing socialists.  In the USSR the Borotbisty were concealed for decades and only ever cited in the pejorative. Today their role is demeaned again with Volodymyr Viatrovych Director of UINR crassly comparing the 1920s “blossoming of Ukrainian culture” to the “successes in Hitler’s economic policies” asking “should this blossoming, which eventually grew into an executed renaissance in the subsequent decade, serve to justify a regime guilty in the intentional murder of millions of Ukrainians?”.[xix] (One can only speculate how long the memorial to Oleksander Shumsky, the Borotbist leader, will stand in Zhytomyr.)

The current official history seeks to sanitize the revolution of radical socialist content, and places conservatives centre stage.  None more so than the wartime era integral nationalists notably the Stepan Bandera led Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists.[xx]  The latter are presented as heirs to 1917-1921 revolution. The glorification and paradoxes of Bandera in contemporary Ukraine deserve a study in its own right. But in relation to approaches to the revolution of 1917-1921 it brings to the fore a clash of conceptions of Ukraine which are not new, and were already posed when Bandera re-emerged after the war seeking to influence the Ukrainian emigrants in displaced persons camps in Europe.

Maistrenko, the former Borotbist, castigated the Bandе́rivsti in an article in the left-wing paper Vpered, “Considering the Ukrainian National Revolution and Nationalist Reaction”, branding Bandera as “the ideological mummy from Galicia in the 1930s” and “a nationalist, but of an old, reactionary school”.[xxi] The revolution envisaged by the Bandе́rivsti tradition diverges from the revolution of 1917, whose leadership belonged to the Ukrainian socialist parties.[xxii]

A pamphlet by Maistrenko from 1948 on the rise ‘Stalinism the new form of Russian Imperialism’

This retrogression we see today was already being challenged by no less a figure than Volodymyr Vynnychenko, one of the most popular figures of the revolution and leader of the first independent Ukrainian State. After meeting with him in France Maistrenko and his comrades of the Ukrainian Revolutionary Democratic Party, published a pamphlet by Vynnychenko which speaks to our current controversies.[xxiii] Recalling that their “Ukrainian spring” had faced numerous enemies, Vynnychenko argued their defeat was not only due to physical power but their political disorder. The Bolsheviks had an “intense fear of losing the colony” but also “raised the banner of the most decisive social and economic revolution which was the cry of the Ukrainian worker-peasant masses.”[xxiv] The question was posed as: “either national liberation, or social, or ‘Ukraine’, or ‘land and factories”. The central body of the revolution, the “Central Rada did not try to combine these two slogans”, believing “the enthusiasm of the national rebirth would be above all other interests.” And in the Central Rada, there was a lack of sufficient understanding of the moment, unanimity, and the determination to become the vanguard of the masses, to act as an expression not only of their national but also their social and economic interests.[xxv]

Vynnychenko saw this as a recurrent problem, the followers of Bandera taking an even more dogmatic approach and refusal to learn from history:

The Bandero-UHVRist youth, teaching me how to fight for Ukraine, categorically told me that only idiots and traitors raise the question of what Ukraine should be. For them, this question has no weight, only Ukraine.[xxvi]

Vynnychenko saw a different historical tendency of the revolution than the uniform one set forth in today’s official historical narrative in Ukraine. In contrast Vynnychenko emphasized they did not all think the same way, the revolution created a current of “one-sided liberation” (odnobichnoho vyzvolennya) focused on national-statehood – and the “Universal current” that sought a “comprehensive liberation” (vsebichnoho vyzvolennya) both social and national. [xxvii]  The members of the “Universal current” comprised the left-wing Ukrainian Socialist-Revolutionaries (Borotbisty) and left-wing Ukrainian Social Democrats (Ukapisty).[xxviii] Maistrenko was active is both parties. One reviewer of Borotbism wrote: “It is almost impossible to speak accurately of Ukrainian nationalism; rather there are many factions of Ukrainian nationalists”.[xxix]

Maistrenko’s Borotbism presents a different view of the revolution than those which see to shroud it as a fight between an undifferentiated mass of Ukrainian people in struggle with the Russian Empire. It is a valuable record of events that were pivotal to the development, if not a foundation event of modern Ukraine.

Introduction and editor: Christopher Ford is the author of a number of books and articles on labor history, including 1839; The Crossroads of the European Revolution (2010), co author of The Chartist Insurrection (2012), Lev Yurkevych: A Lost Leader of the Ukrainian Revolution (2013). Organizer of ‘Ukraine Solidarity Campaign’ he has for many years engaged in support for trade unions and social activists in Ukraine.  


[i].          V.Vynnychenko, Rozlad i pohodzhennia, cited in Ivan L.Rudnytsky, Essays in Modern Ukrainian History, Edmonton, 1987, p.419.

[ii]           Borotbisty is the plural form of Borotbist derived from the name of their party newspaper Borotba meaning struggle.

[iii]          Micro histories of the UPSR and Borotbisty are included in:  Andrzej Rudzienski, Ukrainian Problem – Past and Present, From Czarism to Stalinism, New International, Vol.14 No.5, July 1948. Mace, James, Communism and the Dilemmas of National Liberation, Harvard, 1983, Reshetar, John, The Ukrainian Revolution, 1917–1920: A Study in Nationalism, New York, 1972, Borys, Jurij, The Sovietization of Ukraine, 1917–1923, Edmonton, 1980.  There is no specific history of the USDRP, though in addition to the above two important unpublished studies which address this party and the wider Ukrainian socialist movement are: Boshyk, George.Y., The Rise of Ukrainian Political Parties in Russia 1900-1907: With Special Reference to Social Democracy, PhD Theses, St.Anthonys College Oxford, 1981, Bojcun, Marko, The Working Class and the National Question in Ukraine, 1880-1920, York University, Toronto, 1985.

[iv]         The Borotbisty of the revolutionary period should not be confused with the small neo-Stalinist sect Ob’yednannia “Boroťba” (Union of Struggle ) formed in Ukraine in 2011. See: http://avtonomia.net/2014/03/03/statement-left-anarchist-organizations-borotba-organization/

[v]          Procyk, Anna, Russian Nationalism and Ukraine, The Nationality Policy of the Volunteer Army during the Civil War, CIUS, Edmonton, 1995, p.49, and Prince Alexander Wolkonsky, The Ukraine Question The Historic Truth Versus Separatist Propaganda, Rome, Ditta E Armani, 1920.

[vi]         See Michael Pszyk, ‘Novorossiya’s’ Right-wing Friends’, Ukraine Solidarity Campaign, <https://ukrainesolidaritycampaign.org/2017/07/28/novorossiyas-right-wing-friends/>. [Accessed 2 April 2018]

[vii]         See Michael Pszyk, Novorossiya’s’ Leftist Friends’, Ukraine Solidarity Campaign, <https://ukrainesolidaritycampaign.org/2017/07/28/novorossiyas-leftist-friends/>. [Accessed 2 April 2018].

[viii]        It is true the claim to be waging an anti-fascists struggle has been utilized to secure willing support from the neo-Stalinist left and others, simultaneously the Russian Empire nationalism and even Tsarist goals of the Russian forces in East Ukraine are undisguised. This Russian aggression of 2014 directed towards Eastern Ukraine presents many similarities to the aggression directed towards Western Ukraine in 1914.

[ix]         An appalling example this is the work of the British Stalinist Andrew Murray, The Empire and Ukraine, Manifesto Press, London 2015. In contrast even to Soviet historians Murray makes no reference at all to a Ukrainian Revolution in 1917, or to it creating an autonomous Ukraine and the Ukrainian Peoples Republic. History for Murray conveniently begins in 1918 with the German sponsored Hetmanate. Ibid. Empire and Ukraine P.49-50.

[x]          On these ideas of Maistrenko and his comrades of the URDP see: Chris Ford, ‘Socialism, Stalinism and National Liberation: Coming to Terms with a Changed World, The Ideas of the URDP ( Vpered Group) in the Post-War Era’, Debatte: Journal of Contemporary Central and Eastern Europe , Volume 14, , 2006 – Issue 2, pp 119-143.

[xi]         See, Andor, Laszlo and Summers, Martin, Market Failure A Guide to the East European ‘Economic Miracle’, London 1998, and Haynes, Mike, Russia Class and Power 1917-2000, London 2002.

[xii]         Russia’s Near-Abroad policy has been structured under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its specialized agency, Rossotrudnichestvo (the Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, Compatriots Living Abroad, and International Humanitarian Cooperation. See: Marlene Laruelle, The “Russian World”, Russia’s Soft Power and Geopolitical Imagination, Center on Global Interests, Washington, 2015

[xiii]        Babenko,A (Ivan Maistrenko), ‘Stalinizm, suchasna forma rosiysʹkoho imperializmu., Vpered, no.7-8 (19-20), Munich, 1951.

[xiv]       Kremlin backing for European reactionary forces can been seen in such examples as support for the French National Front, Forza Italia, Silvio Berlusconi’s party in Italy, the Austrian Freedom Party, the Catholic-monarchist Carlist movement in Spain, the Hungarian Jobbik party, the Greek Golden Dawn party and the Bulgarian Ataka party, through to the British National Party (BNP) and the German Zuerst journal.

[xv]        Eight of its Ukraine’s oblasts were targeted as winnable by Kremlin strategists. Almost simultaneously with the developments in Crimea, rallies broke out in Kharkiv, Odesa, Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson, Dnipro, Zaporizhia, Mykolayiv and many smaller towns. These saw pro-Kremlin rallies, Russian flags, attempts to seize the Security Bureau of Ukraine or police premises and proclaim People’s Republics – in some places more successfully than in others. However, the proxy forces did not gain the mass support that the organizers presumed, and they often had to bring in ‘guest protesters’ from Russia to try to turn the tide.

[xvi]       Ihor Losiev, 2 June 2016, ‘The Battle for Historical Memory’, <http://ukrainianweek.com/History/166557> [accessed 2 April 2018].

[xvii]       Seventy scholars of Ukraine based in Western Europe, North America and Ukraine condemned these laws. The legislation has drawn criticism from other institutions ranging from the United States Holocaust Museum to the OSCE. The Provisions of the institute are available on-line at: <http://www.memory.gov.ua/page/polozhennya-pro-ukrainskii-institut-natsionalnoi-pamyati> [Accessed 2 April 2018].

[xviii]      In this model the ‘Ukrainian State’, (the Hetmanate) of Pavlo Skoropadsky installed by the Kaisers Germany, is placed on a par with the Ukrainian Peoples Republic it overthrew. This state was itself guilty of crimes later Communists and Nazis are today condemned by the law of Ukraine for committing.

[xix]       Viatrovych makes no differentiation between the Stalinist era and the revolutionary period. See Volodymyr Viatrovych, ‘”Decommunization” and Academic Discussion’,<https://krytyka.com/en/solutions/opinions/decommunization-and-academic-discussion.> [Accessed 2 April 2018].

[xx]        Andreas Umland, ‘The Ukrainian government’s Memory Institute against the West’,<http://www.neweasterneurope.eu/articles-and-commentary/2284-the-ukrainian-government-s-memory-institute-against-the-west>. [Accessed 2 April 2018].

[xxi]       A Babenko, ‘Ukrayinsʹka natsionalʹna revolyutsiya i natsionalistychna reaktsiya’, Vpered, Munich, No.3. (12), 1950.

[xxii]       These competing conceptions of Ukraine are not present in the official state narrative. This model of “historical memory” is reinforced by four memory laws including ‘On the Legal Status and Honoring the Memory of Fighters for Ukraine’s Independence in the Twentieth Century’. See

            <http://www.memory.gov.ua/laws/law-ukraine-legal-status-and-honoring-memory-fighters-ukraines-independence-twentieth-century.> [Accessed 2 April 2018].

[xxiii]      The editors protested that the leading political circles of the emigration were blocking Vynnychenko from reaching the émigré community. It was highlighted how the old Russian writer and white emigre Aleksandr Kuprin had returned to Moscow to a heroic welcome, yet they failed to respect the only Ukrainian author whose drama was known in all European theatres and leader of the first Independent Ukrainian State. V. Vynnychenko, ‘Rozlad i pohodzhennia,Vidpovid moim prykhylnykam i neprykhylnykam’ , Nasha Borotba, Geneva, 1948,

[xxiv]     Ibid, Rozlad i pohodzhennia, p.6

[xxv]      Ibid, Rozlad i pohodzhennia,  p.6

[xxvi]     UHVR – abbreviation of the Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council the commanding center of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army in the 1940’s. Vynnychenko warned Stalinist communism, sooner or later, will be eliminated and Ukrainian politicians needed to consider what order should replace it, answering the question what should Ukraine be? Rozlad i pohodzhennia, Ibid, p.19

[xxvii]     Ibid, Rozlad i pohodzhennia, p.7

[xxviii]    Ibid, Rozlad i pohodzhennia,  p.8

[xxix]     George Barr Carson, ‘Reviews’, American Slavic and East European Review, Vol.15, No.3 (Oct., 1956), p.425.

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