Ukraine’s Neo-Fascist Right Sector Claims Responsibility Again for 2 May 2014 Terrorist Pogrom

photo ODESSA POGROMby Gordon M. Hahn

Not once but now twice one of the Ukraine Maidan regime’s allied parties, the neo-fascist Right Sector (RS), has claimed responsibility for the 2 May 2014 terrorist pogrom in which 48 activists opposed to the Western-backed Maidan regime in Kiev were killed; most of them burned alive as Ukrainian ‘nationalists’ shot at, three Molotov cocktails and sang the Ukrainian national anthem. Hundreds more anti-Maidan regime activists were injured and wounded. I have written numerous times about RS’s first claim of responsibility. RS’s second claim of responsibility for the crime came yesterday, 1 May 2015 and reads as follows:

“2 May at 14.00 at the Cathedral Square pro-Ukrainian forces will rally the city on the anniversary of the day when patriots defended peace in Ukrainian Odessa. May 2 last year, thanks to the bold and coordinated actions in Odessa, the plans of the occupiers and their supporters were frustrated. On that day we all fought and won! We remember that our colleagues who have paid with their lives for the future of Odessa and Ukraine. Their feat will live in our hearts forever. The event will be a memorial service for the dead patriots rally commemorating the heroes a minute of silence and the laying of flowers. Security will be provided by armed units of organizations that are part of the command. The perimeter is to be under the control of Right Sector activists Avtomaidan’, ‘RSL’, and ‘Self Defense Odessa’. We welcome all patriotic citizens of Odessa on May 2 at 14.00 on Cathedral Square. Total power! Eternal memory to those who gave their lives for Ukraine!” (http://pravyysektor.info/news/anons-richnytsi-2-travnya-v-odesi/).

On the day of the anniversary, May 2nd, RS offered a motive to explain its terrorist pogrom a year earlier. A post on its website claimed that it acted after one Ivan Ivanov, said to be a RS member, was killed in the street clashes in the city center that preceded the attack on the square before the Trade Union building in which most the pogrom murdering occurred. RS proudly posts along with the anniversary statement one of the many videos showing RS and other ultra-nationalist Ukrainians attacking the anti-Maidan tent city on the square and then the Trade Union building (http://pravyysektor.info/news/odesa-2-travnya-2014-ho-roku-zhadajmo-video/). On the same day, however, leading RS member Igor Mosiichuk posted on his Facebook page praising the terrorist pogrom, exclaiming: “I remember and I am proud.” He was particularly proud to have given a rebuff to “occupiers and collaborators” and that the attack “gave an impetus to the war against separatists and occupiers in Donbass” (http://vesti-ukr.com/odessa/98618-na-kulikovom-pole-proshel-traurnyj-miting).

Last year the RS website’s claim of responsibility for the terrorist pogrom was even more effusive than Mosiichuk was today the about the atrocity and made no mention of their alleged motive: “May 2, 2014 is another bright page in our national history.” It claimed responsibility by noting that “about a hundred members of ‘Right Sector’ and patriotic-minded Odessa residents countered the rebels” and that “Dmitro Yarosh ignored the ‘expedience’ of the election campaign to coordinate the action against the Russian aggression.” (Eugene Trofymenko, “ATO Po-narodnomu, Abo chomu ne Vladimir Putin ne vviv viyska,” Pravyi Sektor, 2 May 2014, http://pravyysektor.info/articles/ato-po-narodnomu-abo-chomu-ne-vladimir-putin-ne-vviv-vijska/).  

Since then, regular Ukrainian army troops along with RS and RS-penetrated National Guard troops attacked defensively-postured southern and eastern Ukrainian resistance forces and unarmed activists throughout early May, while Kiev refused to negotiate with the rebels. In late April they killed some 30 of the Donetsk resistance in and around Slavyansk, and in Mariupol two weeks later they killed another 20 for refusing to crackdown on demonstrators. Some of the Mariupol casualties were unarmed civilians. One was a Russian journalist. Yet after these atrocities, RS’s leader, Dmitro Yarosh, remained free, was never questioned by police, was allowed to travel from his field headquarters in Dnepropetrovsk to Kiev and participate in a presidential debate, and run in last year’s presidential election unhindered by Kiev’s law enforcement organs. Ukrainian state and independent media have given Yarosh and the Right Sector a free pass in terms of condemnation. Nor has president-elect Poroshenko spoken out against Yarosh or pledged to arrest him and his storm troopers. More recently, Yarosh was appointed an advisor to the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, now undergoing training from U.S. and other Western armed forces. Nonetheless, RS’s armed forces have refused to subordinate themselves to the army or National Guard.

Neither the US government or any publication from the mainstream media, academia, or the DC think tank community (except my own, hence I am no longer mainstream) has ever condemned the Maidan regime authorities for failing to complete an investigation into the atrocity. On the one-year anniversary of the terrorist attack, the State Department managed to issue a statement merely urging Kiev to it to carry out the investigation more quickly.

With similar impunity, Kiev has still not completed its investigation into the 20 February 2014 ‘sniper’ massacres that tipped the scales in favor of the streets, which led by RS and other neo-fascist and ultra-nationalist forces, overthrew Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich despite and EU-Russian sponsored agreement that would have ended the crisis and which RS and other radicals violated. Some international organizations and human rights groups have accused Kiev of deliberately dragging out and/or obstructing investigation. Evidence is mounting that RS and other ultra-nationalists were behind the sniper massacre as well, as Ukrainian professor Ivan Katchanovskii has documented.[1]

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[1] See Ivan Katchanovski, “The Snipers Massacre on the Maidan in Ukraine,” Academia.edu, Paper presented at the Chair of Ukrainian Studies Seminar at the University of Ottawa, Ottawa, October 1, 2014, www.academia.edu/8776021/The_Snipers_Massacre_on_the_Maidan_in_Ukraine and Ivan Katchanovskii, “The ‘Snipers’ Massacre’ on the Maidan in Ukraine (Revised and Updated Version),” Academia.edu, 20 February 2015, www.academia.edu/8776021/The_Snipers_Massacre_on_the_Maidan_in_Ukraine or Johnson’s Russia List, #33, 21 February 2015, Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs053/11 02820649387/archive/1102911694293.html. See also Konrad Schuller, “Wie kam es zum Blutbad auf dem Majdan?,” 8 February 2015, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, http://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/ausland/europa/ukraine-die-hundertschaften-und-die-dritte-kraft-13414018.html; Gabriel Gatehouse, “The untold story of the Maidan massacre,” BBC News Magazine, 12 February 2015, www.bbc.com/news/magazine-31359021; “Maidan Massacre,” Documentary Film by John Beck-Hofmann, You Tube, 14 February 2015, www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ary_l4vn5ZA; Sonya Koshkina, “Vozrozhdenie Rady,” Lb.ua, 22 February 2014, http://lb.ua/news/2014/02/22/256600_vozrozhdenie_radi.html; and Vyacheslav Khrypun, “Obshee mnenie boitsov bylo takim, chto nas prosto predali,” Apostrophe.com, 20 February 2015, http://apostrophe.com.ua/article/society/2015-02-20/obschee-mnenie-boytsov-byilo-takim-chto-nas-prosto-predali/1284. For a brief summary of the evidence in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and BBC investigations, see Graham Stack, “KYIV BLOG: What triggered the Maidan massacre?,” Business News Europe, 13 February 2015, http://bne.eu/content/story/kyiv-blog-what-triggered-maidan-massacre.

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Gordon M. Hahn is an Analyst and Advisory Board Member of the Geostrategic Forecasting Corporation, Chicago, Illinois; Senior Researcher, Center for Terrorism and Intelligence Studies (CETIS), Akribis Group, San Jose, California Analyst/Consultant, Russia Other Points of View – Russia Media Watch; and Senior Researcher and Adjunct Professor, MonTREP, Monterey, California. Dr Hahn is author of three well-received books, Russia’s Revolution From Above (Transaction, 2002), Russia’s Islamic Threat (Yale University Press, 2007), which was named an outstanding title of 2007 by Choice magazine, and The ‘Caucasus Emirate’ Mujahedin: Global Jihadism in Russia’s North Caucasus and Beyond (McFarland Publishers, 2014). He also has authored hundreds of articles in scholarly journals and other publications on Russian, Eurasian and international politics and wrote, edited and published the Islam, Islamism, and Politics in Eurasia Report at CSIS from 2010-2013. Dr. Hahn has been a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (2011-2013) and a Visiting Scholar at both the Hoover Institution and the Kennan Institute.

About Gordon M. Hahn