Anti-Semites on Rise in Ukraine, David Duke Helps

Anti-Semites in the Ukraine appear to have learnt from their co-ideologists in Russia. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency reports:

Leading Ukrainian intellectuals condemned a recent surge of anti-Semitism in the media and criticized authorities for not doing enough to stop such ideas.

A group that included leading journalists, authors and philosophers made its position public at a news conference Tuesday in Kiev. The statement “Against Xenophobia, For a European Ukraine” condemned the activities of MAUP, a private university whose leaders are considered responsible for a recent rise in anti-Semitism in the media and who earlier this summer endorsed calls to deport Ukrainian Jews.

The authors of the statement also condemned an anti-Semitic letter, signed by some 100 public figures, including two legislators, calling on authorities and the Supreme Court to investigate the activities of local Jewish organizations. The statement was signed by philosophers Miroslav Popovich and Yevgeniy Sverstyuk, journalists Vachtang Kipiani, Yuri Makarov and Natalia Ligachyova, writer Yuriy Andruchovich and others.

This anti-Semitic letter is directly parallel with what happened in Russia back in January, when anti-Semites produced a letter calling for Russian Jewish groups to be banned. The letter appeared in April; journalist and blogger Veronica Khokhlova noted at the time:

Andriy Shkil, leader of the UNA-UNSO and one of the tackiest Ukrainian politicians, and Stepan Khmara, a former dissident, were among those who signed a letter to Yushchenko (in Ukrainian), asking him to quickly do something about “organized Jewry” in Ukraine. Both Shkil and Khmara are members of Yulia Tymoshenko’s Batkivshchyna Party. The letter is remindful of the one written in Russia earlier this year – only the Ukrainian copy has gotten a lot more signees and a lot less publicity.

Yulia Tymoshenko (or “Yulia Timoshenko”) is the current Prime Minister of Ukraine, and Shkil and Khmara are not the only legislators to have embarrassed her. Back in June the JTA noted an alarming conference that was held at MAUP (“The Interregional Academy of Personnel Management”):

Participants at an anti-Zionist conference in Kiev called for the deportation of Jews from Ukraine.

The call came from one of the participants in the June 3 meeting in the Ukrainian capital. David Duke, a U.S. white supremacist, presided over the one-day conference, titled “Zionism as the Biggest Threat to Modern Civilization.” A number of Ukrainian politicians and public figures took part in the conference, including Levko Lukyanenko, a member of Parliament from the bloc headed by Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko.

The Kyiv Post‘s response was blistering:

We call on Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko to eject Lukyanenko from her Bloc immediately. There should be no room in her ranks for anyone who feels comfortable mucking about with Duke in an anti-Semitic cesspool like this event was.

To be honest, it’s hard to tell how persistent an ally of Tymoshenko or President Viktor Yushchenko has to be in his misbehavior before his leaders decide it’s worth disciplining him. Ukraine’s new leaders are, by our standards, a little too easygoing when it comes to punishing the nonsense perpetrated by their underlings.

…There is no ambiguity on this matter: Lukyanenko willingly participated in a disgusting orgy of racism and hatred. In any other responsible country, he would already be a pariah. If Tymoshenko does not eject him from the Tymoshenko Bloc, observers will be free to draw their own conclusions about how far Ukraine really has come, and how different its new leaders are from the last pack. A country in which a politician is allowed to move with impunity from discussing Jewish evil with a fringe-right lunatic to taking his place at the table with the prime minister is one that doesn’t deserve to “join the West,” and never will. It’s a country that deserves derision.

MAUP is run by Heorhiy Shchyokin, who also is also a leader of the new Ukrainian Conservative Party, which is linked to David Duke. Some more information has been blogged by David Bloom at the very good World War 4 Report:

A new party in Ukraine allegedly aligned with US-based neo-Nazi, former Klu Klux Klan Grand Wizard and Louisiana state representative David Duke has Ukrainian Jews concerned. The Ukranian Conservative Party was registered with the country’s Justice Ministry last month and espouses “anti-fascist” and “anti-Zionist” views. But it also calls for re-inserting the ethnic identity of Ukrainian citizens in their passports, a practice which led in the past to discrimination against Jews. According to AP, the party’s leaders is Heorhiy Shchyokin, chief of the Kiev-based International Academy of Personnel Management, which teaches some 35,000 students. The Moscow-based Union of Councils for Jews in the Former Soviet Union has accused Shchyokin in the past of turning his academy “into the leading publishing center of anti-Semitic literature in Ukraine.” Shchyokin has been widely criticized in the Ukrainian media for his reported links to Duke, with his party being labeled the “Ukrainian Klu Klux Klan.” AP does not say which materials Shychyokin has been publishing, but Duke has been making inroads in the last decade into the former Soviet Union and India. His book “Jewish Supremacism” is billed as a “world-wide bestseller” on his website, and is sold in front of the Russian Duma…

In 2004 Mark B Levin of the NCSJ: Advocates on behalf of Jews in Russia, Ukraine, the Baltic States & Eurasia gave testimony to the U.S. House International Relations Committee that MAUP enjoys “significant funding from Arab and Muslim states”. The Ukrainian Center for Holocaust Studies has an article by Anatoly Podolsky that carries further details about MAUP (although unfortunately not very well translated):

According to the recent research, xenophobia and anti-Semitism on post-Soviet territories are absolutely commercial – anti Semitic propaganda for financing. [4] And in avant guarde of anti Semitic movement in Ukraine for more than two years stands notorious Interregional Academy of Management (MAUP – this abbreviation creaks on the teeth for the frequency of repetition in mass-media, different discourses in connection with anti-Jewish propaganda) and its publishing bodies “Personal”/the Staff/ magazine and weekly “Personal +”/Staff Plus/. Since March 2002 [5] in almost every single number of the magazine and then the weekly edition anti Semitic materials have been published. The authors of these opuses are, but for absolutely odious characters like the president of MAUP G. Shokin and prof. V. Yaremenko, rather well-known scientists like M. Sentchenko, I. Hiznyak, S. Bilokin etc. Though I believe their publications, containing hardly hidden anti-Semitism, are disastrous for their scientific reputation.

…MAUP has about 27 thousand students, 55 affiliates in Ukraine, 7 regional institutions, Open International University [12]. The new year of studies is soon to begin and new students will fall under anti Semitic rhetoric of the authorities of this educational establishment and its editions. Nowadays I firmly believe that the state, the public must stop anti-Jewish propaganda in MAUP.

So will President Yushchenko and PM Timoshenko tackle this problem? Or will it be left to the writers, journalists, and philosophers?


Footnotes from the Podolsky excerpt:

4. V.Likhachev. Anti-Semitism in Ukraine. In collection “Main Anti Semitic Tendencies in CIS Countries”.-K.,2003.-p.21

5. In March 2002 the “Staff” published the article of G. Shokin “Zionism: “UBERMENSCHEN” Ideology”.-The “Staff”.-3.-2002. I think it important to note here the work of S. Averbuch “Sinusoid of Judophobia”, which is due to be published. This analytic collection characterises almost all anti Semitic publications of the “Staff” for two years. Unfortunately, I think the author will have more and more material to add.

12. S. Averbuch. Sinusoid of Judophobia. On Rights of Manuscript.-p3