23/01/2010 – Well dear readers, as some of you are aware, yesterday was “Ukrainian Unity Day”…….yeh, I know, looking at the voting in the elections last week Ukraine is about united as North and South Korea, but that is besides the point.
So, with an outgoing nationalistic president and a complete misnomer such as Ukrainian Unity Day something contentious was bound to happen……..and it did!
President Yushenko decided to posthumously award a historical gent called Stephan Bandera the title of “Hero of Ukraine”…..an award he also gave to Banders’s living grandson yesterday……maybe it is hereditary, as to my knowledge Bandera’s grandson has done little worthy of note to warrant such an award.
The problem with this is……..on Ukraine Unity Day…….it is a very divisive thing to do.
As you will see, opinion about Stephan Bandera……like politics and language here…….is split East and West in Ukraine so whilst the timing of this award is welcomed in West Ukraine it is not the case in East Ukraine.
Bandera of course was subject to the propaganda machine of the Nazi’s and the USSR…….both very powerful and active……so the truth about Bandera has to be looked at subjectively as to what was said about him by either……..and neither were known for telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
I have no opinion over the man to be honest, all of his actions were ultimately pointless in the grand scheme of things and went nowhere to creating a sovereign nation at the time or brought it any closer time-wise. Ukraine’s independence when it arrived, was not arrived at by bloodshed, terrorism, propaganda, coup or anything internally within Ukraine…….but by the collapse of the USSR. More by accident than design if we are honest about it.
This is something for the historians to squabble over and children in schools to doodle over when waiting to get out of a lesson. It really does nothing to change Ukrainian history in the grand scheme of things but of course it will further polarise the views of todays Ukrainians at the time when the electorate are voting along East/West lines once again.
For certain on Ukrainian Unity Day it will not do anything to help unite Ukraine.