Category Archives: Holocaust

OUN-Bandera: An Open Debate With Whom?

My initial post “OUN-Bandera, the 1948 War in Israel, and the Utility of Open Debate” has inspired three replies that all raised the question of who should be included in such a debate. Borys Potapenko (UKL446, item 10) writes that the claims that the OUN instigated a pogrom in Lviv in Summer 1941 have been “authoritatively exposed as part of a Soviet disinformation campaign,” a tainted source feeding the debate. Stephen Velychenko (UKL446, item 11), quoting extensively from a recent article by Peter Beinart in the New York Review of Books, points out that Orthodox Jews, uninterested in a critical stance towards historical or contemporary Zionism, increasingly control the Israel-Palestine debate in the United States and can thereby hardly be counted upon as debate partners on Ukrainian-Jewish history. Evgenyi Finkel, in a comment reproduced at the bottom of this post, argues that the debate, first and foremost, concerns Ukrainians and must be conducted in Ukraine among Ukrainians, irrespective of narratives emerging from Israel, the Jewish diaspora or Russia.

The question is pertinent. If we believe in an open debate on controversial aspects of a national narrative, such as the role of the OUN and Bandera during World War II, then we have to have a clear idea about the players interested in these matters.

Continue reading


Leave a comment

Filed under Bandera, Holocaust, Israel, Memory, Narratives, Omission, OUN

On Holodomor Denial

In the second issue of Holodomor Studies, librarian Jurij Dobczansky, in an article reproduced with permission in UKL445 (7 June 2010), writes that the Library of Congress has introduced, last Fall, the new categories of Holodomor denial literature (“for works that diminish the scale and significance of the Ukrainian Famine of 1932‑1933 or assert that it did not occur”) and Holodomor denial (“for works that discuss the diminution of the scale and significance of the Ukrainian Famine of 1932‑1933 or the assertion that it did not occur”).

It seems to me that the category of “Holodomor denial” conflates two distinct strands in the charged debate over the Holodomor—that of “Famine-as-Mass-Murder” denial and that of “Famine-as-Genocide” denial.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Council of Europe, Denial, Genocide, Holocaust, Holodomor