The human right activist Valeria Novodvorskaya died yesterday in Moscow. Ukraine lost one of its most devoted friends. My translation (slightly abridged) of Ms. Novodvorskaya’s article originally published in Russian at http://grani.ru/opinion/novodvorskaya/m.229239.html is the expression of my gratitude to this great woman.


2014-07-13Valeria NovodvorskayaGOLIATH HAS NO CHANCES

By Valeria Novodvorskaya, 15.05.2014


At some point, all of us get rid of our innocence by eating the bitter fruit from the Tree of Knowledge. Eighty years ago Europe did not appreciate the leniency and wisdom of the Jewish people who did not know how to kill but who knew how to cure, teach, invent and create. The “reward’ for their refinement was the Holocaust. As a consequence, the Jews remembered the times of Judah Maccabee as well as the famous combat between David (who only shortly before had been a peaceful citizen) and the weird militant Goliath (a prototype of the “wild goose” Strelkov, a commando sent by the Kremlin to devastate the sovereign Ukraine). And now, when Europe is trying to persuade the Israel Defense Force not to damage the health of the peaceful Palestinian terrorists, it’s too late to teach the Israelis to be lenient and peaceful: they’d better have protected the Jews against Hitler in the 1930-1940s, or against Stalin in the late1940s and in the early 1950s.

Glory be given to God, to Ukraine and to the heroes: Europe has learnt some lessons, and at the moment it is making no attempts to give the “Donetsk Republic” the status of the Palestinian state. If the lessons had not been learnt, a pro-Russian Palestinian-like state – spiteful and dumb, with the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate at the head – would have been created. Quite a likely outcome! In the Donetsk area there are enough of those who are ready to “die for faith” – even women-folk are shielding their Hamas-type militants on the barricades and at checkpoints. Just the same way as you may see Syria and Iran standing behind the Palestinian terrorists, in Donbas you may see Putin’s Russia in the form of the disgusting Leviathan, with its long tail and huge mouth, who is standing right behind the militants at election commissions, all dressed in cammies and masks. The sweetest Putin would like to be the producer of the re-make “The Prayer for Hetman Mazepa”. Besides, movie directors in Moscow have rich imagination – far richer than Yuri Ilyenko, the director of the original film, had.

For some inexplicable reason Russia was not happy with the peaceful, God-fearing and hard-working Ukrainians, who worked so well and inexpensively for Russia, and who were Christians with the perfect command of the Russian language, too. Putin’s plan was to restore their war skills they had learnt back in the historic past as Cossacks, peasant rebels or militant nationalists in the WWII. At present they are bringing back those skills. Thou shall not kill, says the Bible, but Russia’s neighbors cannot survive without the skill of killing. Charles XII  of Sweden and his protégé Hetman Mazepa may today be replaced by the nationalist Dmytro Yarosh and the Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, or, in the latter’s place, even by the Polish head of state Donald Tusk or by Dalia Grybauskaite from Lithuania. Ukraine will be allowed to do to the Moscow proxies, who are hired from among the rabble of the Crimea and Transdnistria, whatever should be done to bandits and murderers who torment ordinary people. No other way! Europe is in a state of shock: it brings in armfuls of the American weapons and is ready to decorate the anti-ballistic defense systems the way Christmas trees are decorated.

Russia has got much impudence and many nuclear weapons, but Russia hasn’t got Peter the Great who opened a window into Europe. Putin is boarding the window up. Putin is a character of Mussorgsky’s ”Khovanshchina”: he is an Old Believer who suggests Russia should sacrifice itself by fire in a skete community protesting against the West – the West which is rich, educated and smart. Ok, let Putin’s actors do the job, with us watching the performance, as if we would watch the opera from the pit in the Bolshoi. The Ukrainian David is sure to win because he is motivated to defend himselff and Ukraine – for the barbed wire and the Holodomor never to happen here again.

The Ukrainian peasants had once encountered the Goliaths of the Russian Secret Service by leaving into forests as entire villages. But now they possess heaps of weapons to boot. Davids of the Maidan have not only God, but also Europe and the United States on their side. The Palestine of Donetsk  will not be internationally recognized. Yes, this enclave will serve as a springboard for the pirate raids of the Kremlin hirelings, but the Russian patriotic songs of the WWII  about the “national war” and the “holy war” will be borrowed by the Ukrainians this time. At one point the USSR explained its appearance in the Ukrainian fields and steppes by the necessity to fight the Nazis, but now Putin’s excuses are really slim.

Of course, it is not easy to shoot people. The peace-loving and kind-hearted Ukrainian Davids find it difficult to learn this new brutal rule. Just as it was also difficult for the Jews, the People of the Book, to come to terms with new realities. But now the Jews do the job so well that the Palestinian terrorists hardly have time to complain (in between the attacks) to the United Nations. Very much the same as Donetsk militants: after they kill a dozen or so of the Ukrainian soldiers they run away to Russia to complain; the moment they shoot down a helicopter they complain again. As soon as they burn the armored personnel vehicle, they break into tears.

On the other hand: have you ever seen “peaceful” militants? Or, can militants’ accomplices be considered peaceful civilians? Did the pilots of the “flying fortresses” have to refuse to bomb Hitler’s Germany on the grounds that they might hurt the people of Dresden, Berlin or Hamburg? Those who robbed the Jews of their property, who threw books in bonfires, who shouted “Heil Hitler” and used the slave labor from Eastern Europe on their farms – were they also peaceful civilians? Members of the German Women’s Union in the AA defense units, the Hitler Youth with the Panzerfaust – were they not to be touched, too?

War always implies a lack of choice: you either protect your own, who get their stomachs ripped open, or you take pity on those who cover the enemy military targets with their bodies.

And one final touch. Michelangelo sculpted David, not Goliath. Sculptors, composers, artists and poets will capture the exploits of the Ukrainian Davids for future generations. I do not envision the canvas titled “Putin Steals from the Crimea from Ukraine ” or the sculpture “The Agents of the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate Teach Separatists to Fight to the Bitter End on the Barricades.” Which means that chances of the Russian Goliaths are slim: both the chances of winning and of being placed in the museum. Except for the placement at the museum of occupation. The one which is in Tallinn visited by me recently. A half of the exposition is about the German occupation, while the other half is related to the occupation by the Soviets. Now the same museum will be created in Kyiv.


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