The material where was reported about removing of the nationalists in the underground in Luhansk region was posted on the website of the All-Ukrainian Union “Svoboda”. Of, course it’s about occupied part of the region. “… we set a goal to save in the memory these pages, to leave them for the next generations as the example of the unbroken resistance and confirming of the fact that the names of Ukrainian nationalists mustn’t be forgotten”, writes Bohdan Savur. The correspondent of our edition offers to readers to remember the most bright shows of this political force in pre-revolution and pre-war years.
One race, march of Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UIA) and communists as pj’s
Skewed faces, torches and shouts “One race, one Nation, One Motherland is Ukraine”, burning red flags – all these things became the memories of “celebrating” of October overturn on November 7, 2012.
Artem Zaika, one of the leaders of Luhansk “Svoboda” was near, but didn’t take part in this show. The leadership of the party in this manner winnowed “riotous” from those nationalists, who will available for the next party-building. Let’s give a word to the ex-activist of the party: “A significant part of the “Svoboda” unit consisted from people of frankly nazist and racist views, which party had to use in the agitation in time of elections and like observers, because of the starving for personnel”. The regional Department of AU “Svoboda” had more serious tasks, paying attention the presence of MP-nationalists and cooperation with “Batkivschyna” in the format of the opposition to the Party of Regions and CPU.
The flags of “Svoboda” also had appeared in Stakhanov three weeks before the action. One of the version of pocket “regional” mass media informed that “fascists” and “football hooligans” decided to hold march in honour of UIA heroes and directly faced with communists and cossacks. Such exposition also allowed to Party of Regions to presented themselves as the only political power, opposing to radicals (Ukrainian nationalists and pro-Russian jingos).
According to own version of “Svoboda” really sympathizers to this political power took part in UIA march and communists and orthodox cossacks attacked the participants of action. These two events showed that region has the other supporters of Ukrainian patriotic idea except “Svoboda” and monopoly of official parties and movements is the illusion.
“Garbage from the house” or how it was in fact
Removed from political marginals into the class of heavy politicians, Svoboda has overgrown with the new supporters. How it was tells the story of one of the Ukrainian nationalists Egor Remenets, which we give without edits. “Svoboda” couldn’t be unattractive at that time. Especially people who wanted to change something. Members of “Svoboda” favorably compared on the background of amorphousness of other pro-Ukrainian political forces. Their representatives were not afraid to meet with people, to agitate on the streets, moreover not only at the time of campaigns. Such steps meant a lot for oriented on Ukraine people.
Members of “Svoboda” offered not only ways to solve problems and invited people to do it together, to create local party organizations, to attract active people and to form lists to participate in local elections. This means, that representatives of “Svoboda” acted unconventionally and thanking to this they could accept in their ranks a lot of active, patriotically set Luhansk dwellers. Especially members of “Svoboda” began their activity after the parliament elections 2012, where “Svoboda” showed very good result. Also at that times the curator in every region was appointed by political council of the party. Ihor Shvaika took Luhansk region. He was the head of Kharkiv regional party organization. And the situation became very interesting. Luhansk region was the only where regional organization AU “Svoboda” wasn’t registered also the same was with city and district departments. Of course, there were people, in general old members of “Rukh” and students. Active people, who wanted the realization of their plans and ideas, participation in local elections of power began to come in “Svoboda” after the elections 2012. So, there was a need to register party organizations on the places. Unexplained problem appeared. Members of “Svoboda” didn’t wait for anything except regular supply of the newspapers to hand out them on the streets. No documents, no registration. Shvaika took the control of regional organization in his arms. He worked only with people, who unquestioningly obeyed him, more with youth. The leadership was done in the chieftain-style. Instruction and tasks were given from the top. Shvaika and political council didn’t interest with opinions and suggestions of people on the places. The accent in the work of political organization was done on the struggle with CPU at the time it was forbidden to “touch” The Party of Regions. I remember the voyage of Shvaika through the Luhansk region on March 2013. Local members of “Svoboda” organized the meetings of MP Shvaika with the electorate in Stakhanov, Bryanka, Alchevsk. The members of CPU presented on every meeting. They followed Shvaika during all his tour. In particular, the meeting in Alchevsk was disrupted by drunk “anti-fascists” from CPU, who provoked the fight in the auditorium of the School.
In general, people believed to the leadership of “Svoboda” haven’t seen anything except beautiful words, meeting for the self-PR and party paper. The main things like the registration of party organizations, forming of the electoral lists, participation in local elections wasn’t done up to the beginning of Maidan. This was the main reason for me, my friends and a lot of active people to grow cold to “Svoboda”. It seemed that the leadership of the party played in Luhansk region in their game, the rules of it radically contradicted to the beautiful slogans, declared by “Svoboda” speakers”.
Maidan of doomed
Both in the capital and in Luhansk politicians tried to head and direct in the useful way the protest moods. If there was hanged the portrait of Julia Timoshenko in Kyiv under the Maidan on the “Jolka” (fir-tree), the representatives of different parties and movement at the same time spoke at the Chamber in Luhansk. They stood near each other and near the hhead of local “Batkivschyna” Verigina and her deputy Toptun.
After some time The Civil Sector of Luhansk Euromaidan claimed about itself, but politicians didn’t connect to its actions at all. In spite of “dividing on fractions” the values of those and others were the same. In the face of quite ephemeral threats from the side of “titushki” (local gangs, bought by Party of Regions to beat and chase the pro-European demonstrations – ed.), the patriot mass of Luhansk region began to show the tendency to unite. The implacable opponents Mahritska, Snegirev and Kobzev could be seen on the one stage in the most tragic days of resistance. The destiny of the leaders and usual participants developed differently. The name of Irina Mahritska get to the list of the “enemies of republic”, which made her to run away from terrified Luhansk. A significant part of ex-supporters of “Svoboda” and real members of the party are protecting Ukraine from the enemy, joined the volunteer battalions and AFU.
Artem Zaika, which number of votes wasn’t enough to get to Verkhovna Rada by the lists of party (which also is out from Parliament walls), organized huge volunteer center to help to our militaries. Pragmatic Ihor Shvaika get the portfolio of Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food of the government of Arseniy Yatsenyuk and headed The Department from February to December 2014. According to the words of participants of Luhansk EuroMaidan, “Svoboda” contributed to the radicalization of the protest from the one side, from another – it refused to be solidary with the other groups of EuroMaidan, defending its political exclusiveness.
No freedom for the occupants
The data of the activity of the members of “Svoboda” is little enough, because of the objective reasons. It is known that hostages of separatists and pw’s were released featuring regional organization of the party. Pro-Russian bandits added activists of “Svoboda” into the “hit list” and it’s impossible even to suppose the publicity in the work of party. Website of “Svoboda” informs about the beginning of the project to document the resistance to terrorists of “LPR”. The member of “Svoboda” Taras Popov reports:
“It was done a lot for our victory and for saving of our soldiers. We had an opportunity to inform HQ of ATO about shellings for half an hour before its start. It was from the beginning of the war to September 2014. We have saved more than a dozen of lives with this. Unfortunately we can’t tell about all our guerillas and to say their real names, about all our actions, first of all for the safety of these people”.
The political experience of Luhansk “Svoboda” has demonstrated that there were enough followers of the unity of Ukraine on Donbass and myth about total support of actions of RF is only myth. However, the dividing of the few supporters on the parties and groups in the conditions of the military invasion has played not the last role in the defeat of patriots in Luhansk.
Alexander Dvanov for informator.lg.ua
You can click here to read the Part 1.