Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
On March 28th the next crazy draft bill was introduced in the Verkhovna Rada – this time it concerns the recognition of the black-red flag of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) as a “flag of national dignity”.
In the explanatory note to the draft bill it is said that this flag is “a symbol of indestructibility of the Ukrainian spirit, fidelity to military traditions, and an oath of allegiance to the people of Ukraine”. The substitution of the State flag with the Banderist one is blatant here. It is suggested to punish a display of negligence towards or defiling the Banderist “sacred” object with a penalty equating to 50 minimum wages or imprisonment for a period of up to three years.
In the explanation to the bill it is specified that the black-red flag “must be hung on the buildings of State bodies of Ukraine – both central and local – and also on the buildings of local governments during holidays“.
As a reminder, at the beginning of February a decision was made to allow local authorities to hang the Banderist flag next to the State one. However the local authorities could decide by themselves whether to hang it up or not. And just like that – it was suddenly decided to equate the red-black flag to the State one. The reason lies on the surface: the population and local authorities of Ukraine in their majority didn’t appreciate the initiative to raise Banderist banners over the cities and settlements as much as was hoped, so now it is necessary to drag the draft bill through parliament to forcibly impose Banderism everywhere.
“It (the red-black flag) was one of the symbols of revolution of dignity. And that’s why we suggest to approve its use at the State level. It was already done by a number of local, in particular regional, councils all over Ukraine. The turn of the supreme legislative body of the State came,” stated one of authors of the bill, the deputy from “Svoboda” Andrey Ilyenko.
There is a high probability of the bill being adopted. A number of cities in Ukraine, showing solidarity with Banderists, hung black-red flags of UPA on the day when the draft bill was submitted.
“Today at 12:00 we nevertheless decided to raise this flag, without making it out to be a huge event, because people don’t understand the importance of this flag. This is the flag of those who fought for independence. It’s not the flag of ‘Right Sector’, as people say. ‘Right Sector’ took it directly from the soldiers of UPA, and in general the Cossacks also had this flag. I.e., this is a Cossacks era, the sich riflemen, UPA – these are all our heroes, our grandfathers and great-grandfathers who wanted Ukraine to be independent. They also fought and used this flag during war. It is a symbol of independence,” murmured Yaroslav Godunok, the secretary of the Borispol city council while hoisting the flag of murderers on the central square of the city.
On the same day the black-red flag was officially raised in the cities of the Khmelnitsky region and in Kiev, and informally – even in “separatist” Mariupol, however, so far only near the offices of grant-eating organisations [NGOs – ed].
If the law is adopted the Banderist ideology under the black-red flag, having left the grey zone, will depart to conquer the cities of Ukraine. And especially the rebellious southeast, so that in a few years Ukrainians get used to the “flag of dignity” and try not to notice how the blood of the victims of Khatyn, Babi Yar, Volyn, and tens of other cities and villages of Ukraine, Belarus, and Poland pours out of the red-black cloth. And let’s not forget Donbass either, because the justifications that “this is not the flag of ‘Right Sector'” sound cynical and stupid: it is precisely under the black-red flag that “Right Sector” militants killed the inhabitants of the DPR and LPR. The attempt to elevate the “flag of dignity” to the official level will inevitably aggravate the conflict and stir Odessa, Kharkov, and other regions of Ukraine that categorically reject Banderism.
Poland also won’t tolerate a revival of fascism under its nose. The Polish political scientist Marek Sierant stated that “equating the Banderist flag to the State flag of Ukraine will cause a further deterioration in ties with Poland”. “Poland has more than enough possibilities to do this – for example, it can reduce cooperation in the economic sphere and refuse to support Ukraine at the international level, and also its attitude towards Ukrainians can change inside Poland itself,” considers Sierant.
However, it’s unlikely that this will stop the Banderists, who want to establish themselves in power. The mayor of Ternopol Sergey Nadal issued a threat, saying that “he won’t allow the Poles to rewrite the heroic pages of the history of Ukraine”, that’s why “not only yellow-blue flags, but also red-black ones will be hung on the administrative buildings of Ternopol during holidays”.
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