“Dnepropetrovsk, we are coming back”

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Dnepropetrovsk: Patriot Games

By Da_Dzi

Translated from Russian by J.Hawk

“Yesterday evening, on February 13, there were hangings on
the poles standing on the Europe Square in Dnepropetrovsk. Fortunately, these were
only effigies made of old clothing and sticks. Each effigy had on its chest a
plate with the name and photograph of its “prototype.” They included Vladimir
Putin, Ramzan Kadyrov, and Sergey Lavrov, and their presence should not
surprise any inhabitant of Dnepropetrovsk. The other effigies were provided
with explanation. So, Aleksandr Buzaladze was hanged in effigy because he, a
Russian journalist, interrogated Ukrainian prisoners of war, camera in hand.
Iosif Kobzon’s punishment was due to singing the LPR anthem.

“Russian TV channels are constantly accusing Ukrainians that
we are implementing all manner of horrors,” explained one of the action’s
organizers Maksim Trofimovich. “We thought we should do that what we are
accused of. Unfortunately we can’t hang the real Putin and have to limit
ourselves with an effigy.”

“We want these effigies to hang on Europe Square as long as
possible (until the gods of wind claim them). But let’s look at the facts,”
explained action co-organizer Vitaliy Romenskiy. “We are fed up by the Russian
media depicting us as an aggressive junta. We feel it’s time to hang the “heroes
of our time” in effigy. We aren’t even afraid to call them by name.”

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Once the effigies were hanged, one of the organizers spat in
each of their “faces.”

This is difficult to comment. The people from Dnepropetrovsk
had already said and done it themselves. They are always repeating that they
are normal, that there is no fascism where they live. Perhaps it calms them
down. Perhaps they really believe it. It can happen. Nobody who is part of the
fascist system will admit to being a fascist. Just as the Germans considered
themselves perfectly normal citizens, even as books were burned next to them,
Jews were starved, and oppositionists were shot. Fascism is not visible from
within. Only very enlightened and wise people living in a country so infected
can oppose this disease. There were very few of them in Nazi Germany. There are
very few of them in United Ukraine.

Citizens of Dnepropetrovsk, we are coming back. In a year,
or two, or three years. Maybe in five years. It took us 1418 days after June 22,
1941 to strangle hitlerite fascism. We have enough patience to strangle
Ukrainian fascism. No matter how much time it takes.

Dnepropetrovsk, I shall return. I guarantee it. What will
you do then, blue-yellow Nazis? Will you expect mercy, understanding,
forgiveness? Will you hope that we’ll forget, that I’ll forget?

Don’t expect it. Don’t hope for it. 

J.Hawk’s Comment: The Ukrainian civil war had led to a
hardening of attitudes that may not be outwardly visible to the West, but which
is making the prospect of peace more remote by the day. Too many artillery
shells have been fired, too many innocent people killed, too many extreme
positions staked out by the Kiev junta for them to expect to ever govern in
peace. Whether the polarization is helping or hurting the junta is another
question. It’s striking that in the photos of the “happening” there are very
few participants. We are not looking at a Nazi-style rally with tens of
thousands of inhabitants. No, this is more of a case of a small number of
Galicians and their local sympathizers attempting to impose their version of
Ukrainian nationalism on the rest of the country through intimidation and
outright terror.  So the process of
returning Ukraine to “normal” will likely be simpler than it may seem right
now. But it’s likely to occur at the country dividing into two or more state

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