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Russia responds to Israeli envoy defending Nazis in Ukraine

No country has the right to such “heroes,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zakharova has said

Israel’s ambassador to Kiev, Martin Brodsky, glorified Nazism by saying that Ukraine has the right to consider Stepan Bandera and other WWII collaborators as national heroes, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.

“Not a single organization defending the memory of the Holocaust victims has so much as raised an eyebrow” at Brodsky’s comments, Zakharova noted, despite raking in billions in donations to keep the topic alive. “Haven’t you missed something? The Holocaust must be remembered not just because it happened, but so it doesn’t happen ever again. And not just to one nationality or religion, but to any.”


In an interview with the Israeli Russian-language outlet Iton TV earlier this week, Brodsky said that Ukraine glorifying the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) leaders as national heroes is a process that “cannot realistically be stopped.” 

“Of course, we don’t like those heroes, but for the majority of Ukrainians, these are heroes who fought for independence,” added Brodsky, arguing that Israel should not condition its support for Ukraine on Kiev denouncing Bandera and others.

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A monument to Roman Shukhevych in Ivano-Frankivsk.
Israel speaks out on Ukraine lionizing Nazi collaborators

Zakharova saw it as especially appalling that Brodsky spoke in fluent Russian, as a relative of someone who survived the blockade of Leningrad in WWII. She referenced several historical documents showing the virulently anti-Semitic position of the OUN, and its endorsement of the Nazi mass murder of some 1.4 million Jews in occupied Ukraine. 

Germany was also in search of its own heroes and national identity in the 1920s and 1930s, eventually choosing the idea of “blood and soil” that led to the Holocaust, concentration camps and mass murder – something the Germans have not managed to wash off after 90 years, Zakharova maintained. 

“If Mikhail Brodsky thinks Kiev has the right to such heroes and such an identity, that’s a problem for the Israeli Foreign Ministry,” she said. “No one has the right to such ‘heroes’, for they are not heroes but fiends from hell. That’s not an identity, but a shame on the people of Ukraine. It’s a glorification of Nazism.”

Zakharova pointed out that Brodsky himself is only alive because the Soviet Union disagreed with the “logic” he now embraces. It took the Soviet soldier to “return humanity to its true form” by defeating Nazism, she concluded. “As it turned out, only for a while. Well, here we go again.”


June 22, 2023 at 11:09PM

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