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To Lenin, in Kharkiv

In the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, second largest city of the country, the monument to Vladimir Lenin was recently torn down by a rightist and fascist mob. The organizers of this operation did not conceal that it was revenge for an attempt by Communist Party activists to hold a peace march the day before, on Sept. 27. That march was broken up by the police in conjunction with neo-Nazi gangs.

Here is what Minister of Interior Arsen Avakov wrote on Facebook: "Lenin? Let him fall ... Provided people were not injured and this bloody communist idol did not add to his victims in leaving. Provided rogues and scoundrels do not take advantage of the storm of emotions of Kharkivites and use it for the next wave of clashes."

So the minister recognizes that the act of vandalism could cause an escalation of tension, but still he indulges the neo-Nazis. He assures that everything is under control. Avakov writes: "The Interior Ministry Special Forces and the National Guard are ready to face provocateurs who want to exploit the situation. So don’t even try to do so."

We have no doubt, by the way. No doubt that “provocateurs” will be the label against participants in any protests which result from the policy of the current government.

Inna Bohoslovska, a prominent member of Yanukovich’s ‘Party of Regions’ who is now a supporter of the new regime, rejoices in the demolition of Lenin. "For so long, we struggled for normal policing in Kharkiv. And now, 20 per cent of police officers are absolutely patriotic. Police have taken over the hard work and every day they catch terrorists and separatists."

Bohoslovska has never been an independent politician. She was always a "talking head" for the oligarch Pinchuk. Her voice speaks for the Ukrainian oligarchy. They are building the state of their dreams, where they can loot and pillage while any dissenters are called "terrorists". Our liberals openly rejoice as the country goes the route of 1970s-style Latin American dictatorships--a neoliberal economy against the backdrop of military dictatorship. The route of Pinochet--the idol of the neoliberal public.

Today, the oligarchy in Ukraine is experiencing a "golden age," when participants in any protest can be declared terrorists. To break up demonstrations, they use neo-Nazi militants. Of course, this system requires escalation of hysteria and extensive brainwashing in matters of history. The whole history of the territory of modern Ukraine is described as the nation's struggle for independence, leading to the necessary establishment of the current political regime. Today is a war between civilization and barbarism.

Kharkiv was the first capital of Ukraine. It built planes and missiles, split the atom and created the T-34 tank. It created turbines for power plants which have been shipped around the world. Kharkiv without Lenin is narrow-minded nationalism, simplistic obsession with traditional decoration, degradation of education and science. It’s not for nothing that a few of the neo-Nazis were injured during the destruction of the monument. Their level of education is not enough to destroy an object, leave alone to build one.

To say that Lenin was the founder of Ukraine would be an exaggeration. But the fact is that Ukraine exists in its present borders as a result of the actions of Lenin and his political party. The neo-Nazis’ demolition of the monument to one of the founders of the country is actually a death sentence for its further existence with the present-day borders.

Sergei Kirishuk is a member of the left-wing political organization in Ukraine called Borotba (Struggle). He resides in political exile in Germany. This is a slightly revised translation, by permission of the author. This article was published in English on Liva.com, Sept 30, 2014. This is a slightly revised translation from the original translation from Russian, with permission of the author.

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