by George Eliason for The Saker Blog
When the Vindman story broke last week, we were pathetically reminded that there is a conspiracy against Ukraine and the Diaspora in America. Conspiracy theorists labeled the Ukrainian government integral nationalists plotting against the current President of the United States even before the final ballots were tallied 2016.
Although this article will contain many of the elements of the still-developing Vindman story that have been reported on, the focus shifts over to the bigger question- Why? I propose we take a walk into the back of Vindman’s mind, which easier done than said. As will be shown, this in part is due to the fact that his thought pattern about Ukraine is reflexive.
There is no need to question his military service before this juncture because it posed no conflict for him. Although the US Army is backing his right as a whistleblower now, his motivations in this situation could end up with Vindman receiving a court-martial. It’s all about his motivation.
Alexander Vindman’s ties to Ukraine should have made him disclose a few large conflicts of interest before being assigned in the capacity he has.
- Vindman had business interests in Ukraine which would suffer if the relationship between both countries was jeopardized.
- Was it Vindman’s American patriotism or Diaspora nationalism that led him to share the Oval Office transcript with Ukraine’s president?
According to the Gateway Pundit, “Colonel Vindman may have violated the federal leaking statute 18 USC 798 when he leaked the president’s classified call to several other operatives.”
- Anton Gerashchenko, Ukraine’s Deputy Interior Minister threatened president-elect Donald Trump that he would put him on his Myrotvorets “Peacemaker” site as a target. This is Ukraine’s clearinghouse for hit-for-hire bounties. Because it was heavily publicized, Gerashchenko edited the post after the fact.
As the in-house expert, Vindman would have known this and yet he still conducted himself in the service of Ukraine. In Vindman’s world view it must be acceptable behavior for a foreign government official to threaten his own country’s Commander-in-Chief.
What are his motivations? In his own words, Vindman lays out his priorities.
- I was concerned by the call,” Vindman said, according to his testimony obtained by the Associated Press. “I did not think it was proper to demand that a foreign government investigate a U.S. citizen, and I was worried about the implications for the U.S. government’s support of Ukraine.”-Vindman
“I want to be clear, I was not concerned that anything illegal was discussed,” former NSC Senior Director for European Affairs Tim Morrison testified today.
Vindman’s real concern is the implications of US foreign policy toward Ukraine and keeping it on track with what he thought it should be. I’m sure every Lt Colonel that has a concern intercedes in foreign policy everywhere across the US army.
- “In this situation, a strong and independent Ukraine is critical to U. S. national security interests because Ukraine is a frontline state and a bulwark against Russian aggression. In spite of being under assault from Russia for more than five years, Ukraine has taken major steps towards integrating with the West.”… When I joined the NSC in July 2018, I began implementing the administration’s policy on Ukraine. In the Spring of 2019, I became aware of outside influencers promoting a false narrative of Ukraine inconsistent with the consensus views of the interagency. This narrative was harmful to U.S. government policy. While my interagency colleagues and I were becoming increasingly optimistic on Ukraine’s prospects, this alternative narrative undermined U.S. government efforts to expand cooperation with Ukraine.-Vindman
“Once Ukraine determined that the RF (Russian Federation) was not going to attack and Russia was not a credible threat, they launched their Anti-Terrorist Operations against the rebels (p 65).” Russia’s Hybrid War in Ukraine: Breaking the Enemy’s Ability to Resist Finnish Institute of International Studies by András Rácz
What false narrative was Vindman talking about? It was the fact there was no Russian aggression, assaults or invasions going on. Where did this “false narrative” originate?
In 2014, Ukrainian-American Mark Paslawsky joined Ukraine’s Donbas battalion. He was the nephew of one of WWII’s most sadistic torturers, Mikola Lebed. Lebed was 3rd in the Bandera OUN command chain.
Paslawsky was reported to be an officer in the 75th Ranger Battalion during the 1990s which puts him on the same pedestal as Alexander Vindman in terms of patriotic duty in the US military.
The volunteer battalions like Ukraine’s Donbas are police and cleansing battalions. Paslawsky was true to his Ukrainian Diaspora upbringing and family heritage. As soon as it was opportune, he forgot about honor, service, and codes of conduct when he entered Ukraine.
Paslawsky is famous for torturing people he considered “Russian.” No excuses, no apologies, he tortured and murdered civilians. Paslawsky was a good Ukrainian nationalist.
By July 2014, one month before Paslawsky was killed, Oleg Dube, 2nd in command of the battalion complained on Twitter that the battalion was full of cowards shooting everything that moved and throwing grenades into the houses, cellars, and every structure killing everyone and everything they came across.
These were civilians they murdered. But Paslawsky, who tweeted his adventures under the handle “bruce springnote” made one thing abundantly clear- There were no Russian troops or invasion going on as of August 2, 2014.
This means Vindman’s tale saying there as five years of Russian aggression is getting sketchy.
- November 6th, 2015 In an interview with Gromadske.TV, Markian Lubkivsky, the adviser to the head of the SBU (the Ukrainian version of the CIA) stated there are NO RUSSIAN TROOPS ON UKRANIAN SOIL! This unexpected announcement came as he fumbled with reporters’ questions on the subject. According to his statement, he said the SBU counted about 5000 Russian nationals, but not Russian soldiers in Donetsk and Lugansk Peoples Republics.
- During a briefing with General Muzenko he announced that “To date, we have only the involvement of some members of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and Russian citizens that are part of illegal armed groups involved in the fighting. We are not fighting with the regular Russian Army. We have enough forces and means in order to inflict a final defeat even with illegal armed formation present. “– Ukrainian Armed Forces Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Muzenko said.
- Is Russia About to Invade Ukraine? UkraineAlert by Alexander J. Motyl published at the Atlantic Council December 13, 2018
These are primary sources that LTC (Lieutenant Colonel) Vindman and the Wall Street Journal’s Pulitzer Prize winner Scott Shane call conspiracy theorists. The Ukrainian government from Torchinov to Poroshenko to Zelenskiy has kept Russia as their primary trade partner this entire time. This is a bit unusual for a country that says another is committing aggression against it. Furthermore, where are the international court cases if this is happening?
If the White House Ukraine expert isn’t fact-checking, what is he basing his position on? Hate, just pure unadulterated hate.
“The second reason I mention Paslawsky is that he was, after all, a Ukrainian American. In killing him—and make no mistake about it: Putin killed him—Putin has taken on, in addition to the entire world, the Ukrainian American Diaspora. He probably thinks it’s a joke. But in killing a Ukrainian American, he’s made the war in Ukraine personal for Ukrainian Americans. Their intellectual, material, and political resources are far greater than Putin can imagine. Be forewarned, Vlad: diasporas have long memories. And this one will give you and your apologists in Russia and the West no rest.- Alexander Motyl Loose Cannons and Ukrainian Casualties
The Diaspora’s hatred for Russia is hardwired into their culture in America. It was here the concept was fleshed out, not in Ukraine.
Lonhyn Tsehelsky was Secretary of Internal Affairs and the Secretary of Foreign Affairs for the government of the Western Ukrainian People’s Republic in 1917-18. When the almost formed republic collapsed, he immigrated to America. Tsehelsky formed the Ukrainian Congressional Committee of America (UCCA) and brought W. Ukrainian nationalism to America. He is the great uncle to Ukraine’s ultra-nationalist Rada minister, Oleh Tyanhybok.
According to Wikipedia In 1902 Tsehelsky published Rus’-Ukraïna but Moskovshchyna-Rossia (Rus-Ukraine but Moscow-Russia) which had a significant impact on Ukrainian ideas in both Galicia and in Russian-ruled Ukraine. In this book, he highlighted differences that he claimed existed between Ukrainians and Russians in order to show that any union between the two peoples was impossible. Tsehelsky claimed that Ukrainians historically wanted self-rule, while Russians historically sought servitude. Tsehelsky wrote that Ukrainians who opposed Ivan Mazepa were traitors and that Ukrainian history consisted of a constant struggle of Ukrainian attempts at autonomy in opposition to Russian attempts to impose centralization.
Because the formation of the UCCA is based in this thought and OUNb Bandera lead the Ukrainian-American Diaspora, the politics of hate is what drives them, nothing else.
- According to LTC Jim Hickman who served on a combined US-Russian exercise with Vindman, “At that point, I verbally reprimanded him for his actions, & I’ll leave it at that, so as not to be unprofessional myself. The bottom-line is LTC Vindman was a partisan Democrat at least as far back as 2012. So much so, junior officers & soldiers felt uncomfortable around him. This is not your professional, field-grade officer, who has the character & integrity to do the right thing. Do not let the uniform fool you…he is a political activist in uniform. I pray our nation will drop this hate, vitriol & division, & unite as our founding fathers intended!”
- … and allow Ukraine to realize its dream of a vibrant democracy and economic prosperity .-Vindman
US military officers are not in the business of vibrant economies or democracy. Ukraine can’t realize Vindman’s dream of a vibrant democracy because Ukraine has a nationalism built on Italian fascist philosopher Julius Evola.
“We are not speaking, of course, of Nationalist ideology, which a radical fringe (or, if you prefer, a leading elite) of Western Ukrainian society adopted in the 1930s and pursued through violent means. Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky condemned it at the time, contrasting it with Christian patriotism.
Some see the result as a defeat for nationalism. Certainly, it looks like a repudiation of the traditional type of nationalism based on ethnicity, language, history, culture, and religion.
That is the “old” nationalism of President Poroshenko – and most of our diaspora”-The Ukrainian Weekly May 11, 2019
Poroshenko made W. Ukraine the model for Ukrainian society today, but what about the Diaspora? That radical fringe was the OUN political model that the Diaspora stayed immersed in and is trying to change the United States into.
In their own words- “Unity to act when required has been the diaspora’s mantra – this cannot be disputed. As time moves on, we see that things take a natural course. We see that two wings of the OUN – Banderivtsi, and Melnykivtsi – are working actively on the international level, working in partnership and currently are in strong negotiations about becoming a single entity again”.-Ukraine Weekly Aug 26, 2016
Ukraine’s Zelenskiy was able to run for president based on how he negotiated through these two groups. Poroshenko was OUNb Banderivtsi’s candidate. Zelenskiy was OUNm Melnykivtsi’s candidate. The difference between the two is nominal. They both have a history built on torture and murder. For a background this shows what’s going on in Ukrainian politics in 2019.
The Ukrainian Diaspora openly claims not just the violent legacy of Stepan Bandera but also the mantle and mandate to attack anything they see threatening their power in Ukraine and influence on the US government. LTC Vindman is part of this culture.
Why are Ukrainian-Americans at the forefront of every attempt to impeach Donald Trump as well as the deep-state coup going on? Today, Donald Trump is threatening to remove this rancid influence from American politics.
Looking at the patriotic image the Ukrainian Diaspora tries to project, let’s go back to their charter statement on American civics.
In 1936 the OUN publication, The Nationalist, stated its position pretty clearly about the United States to the native groups that revolved around the UCCA after the war as well as the position they deserved in society.
“Nationalism is the love of country and the willingness to sacrifice for her…A person brought up as a Ukrainian Nationalist will make a one hundred percent better AMERICAN CITIZEN than one who is not.
Was it Nazis or Fascism that guided Washington, Lincoln, or other statesmen to make the U.S. a world power? Or was it American Nationalism?”
“For example, archival documents show that the U.S. Secret Service, the FBI, the State Department, a special intelligence unit created by U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and other agencies investigated in 1940-1942 an involvement of OUN and specifically, OUN-B, members, leaders, and sympathizers in a Nazi-led plot to assassinate President Roosevelt.” The Politics of World War II in Contemporary Ukraine Ivan Katchanovski Journal of Slavic Military Studies, Vol. 27, No. 2, pp. 210-233
As you can see, they haven’t changed methods or politics since the 1930s. If they don’t like a US president, they try to get rid of him or her in the most convenient way possible. Their issue with Roosevelt is he would never accept Nationalism. Today, they still call the Democrat president Roosevelt, a socialist.
But, how far across Ukrainian-American society does this go?
“I do care about social and economic issues affecting every American, but given the war in Ukraine, there is only one issue that we as Ukrainian Americans must focus on: Ukraine… The Central and East European Coalition is a coalition of U.S.-based organizations that represent their countries of heritage, a voting group of over 20 million people…A vote for Trump is a vote against Ukraine!…The upcoming presidential election will be the most important election in which Ukrainian Americans will participate. We can make a difference with deeds not words. Anybody but Trump!- Ukrainian Weekly
This linked series documents how the Diaspora does it and the impact they have. This article shows why Donald Trump won the 2016 election. If the Democrats are successful removing the Electoral College, the actual vote will be determined by 15 cities. Your vote, win or lose, no longer counts if you don’t live in one of them. This is the reason all the Diasporas are strategically located for political impact.
The history and involvement of Alexandra and Andrea Chalupa in both the 2014 Ukraine coup and the election hacking, as well as Russian interference stories, is well known. These two Ukrainian Diaspora sisters are the originators of the impeachment movement of Donald Trump which started just after he declared victory in 2016. Inside the above links, we have another 20 million Diaspora people who think the same way politically and socially.
Although this goes beyond partisan lines in Congress, the Democratic Party is overflowing with Diaspora operatives today. Adam Parkhomenko is a great example of this. He describes himself as Democratic Strategist, Consultant, Political Adviser. Dad. Ukrainian-American. Whatever order, son Cameron’s my life.
- Parkhomenko works with the DNC, Atlantic Council groups, and other groups trying to illegally overthrow the presidency.
Members of Congress celebrate this same Ukrainian nationalist brutality in Ukraine and its sister nationalists ISIS in Syria as well as Ukraine. ISIS also adheres to Julius Evola politically. If you want to know what Ukrainian nationalism looks like with no one buffering them, ISIS is ideal to study. This is what they want to do in Donbass. This is what they want America to become.
“I don’t want to dwell on Islamicist ideology; I don’t know that much about it. Still, we should note that recent Islamicist terrorists quote Evola with facility…One of the features of political Tradition has been the search for a school of the transcendent that could serve as the organizing principle of a new society.
Theoretically, any of the great religious traditions might serve. In practice, though, Traditionalists have usually chosen a radical version of Islam or some kind of neopaganism;… Tradition can be scary, however. Sometimes this knowledge of the inevitable collapse of the modern world inspires nothing more than the formation of groups of adepts who hope to manage the transition when civilization collapses. Sometimes, however, Tradition has sparked the creation of anarchist political groups that hope to accelerate the collapse.” After the Third Age Eschatological Elements of Postwar International Fascism, presented by Professor John Reilly at the Seventh Annual Conference of the Center for Millennial Studies, Boston University, November 2 to 4, 2002
Julius Evola was one of the founders of what became known as the “Tradition” and has adherents infecting all major religions with a fascist/ nationalist construct. According to the fascist Evola (esoteric fascism), immortality is attained by the conscious act that ignores the ramifications of death while plunging headlong into it without a thought. This has nothing to do with the type of religion an adherent is or its afterlife traditions.-
The Millennial Studies project at Boston University is engaged in the study of groups and ideology that pose existential threats and will eventually destroy the modern world.
Hence, they named the dangerous time we live in post-modern. It is quite literally the study of an impending apocalypse. The project reports to the government on the real nature of these groups and ideologies to give the government a basis for dealing with them.
This takes us back to Alexander Vindman as a just another sample of this rabidly nationalist community.
A Tale of Two Diasporas
Vindman grew up in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn NY. Its nickname, Little Odessa stems from the large Russians and Ukrainian enclave that grew big from the 1970s onward. Critiques argue that because of the dense population of Russian speaking people, it’s hardly the place you’d find Ukrainian nationalists. The statement is false.
In reality, what you had during the 1970s and 80s through the end of the Cold War was a dense anti-Communist population of which the leading edge was the Ukrainian nationalist Yaroslav Stetsko. After WWII, the Russian anti-communist émigré’s that fought against the Soviet Union relocated from the Displaced Person camps to the US.
This anti-Communist wave sought to be active in US countermeasures against the Soviet Union alongside the Ukrainian nationalists. Because the Ukrainians refused to work with Russian nationals, they were rejected.
This is a slice of the Russian emigration experience. The Russians kept the important cultural ties but assimilated politically into US democracy politically. Many did maintain a staunch anti-Communist stance throughout the Cold War which transformed into a strong anti-Putin stance during the years after the wall came down.
For the Ukrainians, almost 50 years of Cold War intrigue kept them bound inside the politics of extreme nationalism. For Soviet émigrés from Ukraine, Little Odessa’s Russian speaking Ukrainian community which developed in the 1970s would be the most comfortable place to live.
The most uncomfortable fact about Ukrainian émigrés to the US is even through this period, the anti-Communist tag meant they came from one side of the Bandera experience or the other. Ukrainian anti-Communism is synonymous with Ukrainian nationalism.
In Ukraine during the 1970s, your grandparents either fought for the Soviet Army or they fought against them. This means you were a victim of Nazi aggression, fought for Nazis, or fought against Nazism. This in itself isn’t a smudge or a smear on Vindman or anyone else.
Growing up in Brighton Beach inside a mixed Ukrainian-Russian population would have buoyed his family’s political beliefs. Little Odessa is part of Brooklyn and isn’t an island separated from the Ukrainian nationalist groups critics are arguing applies to Alexander Vindman.
New York is the headquarters of the Ukrainian Congressional Committee of America (UCCA). If you take part in public Ukrainian cultural life in New York, you rub shoulders with Bandera’s OUNb.
During and after the Cold War, NGOs formed claiming representation in Congress for entire Diasporas like the UCCA does for Ukrainian-Americans. Today is no different.
The political makeup of the Russian Diaspora in Brooklyn is much the same as it was when Vindman’s family moved there. The Russian-Ukrainian population is staunchly anti-communist which translated into anti-Putin Russians for many of them. They want to change the face of the Russian Federation.
“And so it was on a spring day in 2014 that Gindler, in his deep Russian voice, started talking about Vladimir Putin and called the leader a “nano-Führer.” His distrust and distaste for Russia’s president is shared by many in the community.” “You shouldn’t talk to any Russian-speaking person here in the West and expect any positive words about Putin,” said Gindler, a registered independent voter who cast his ballot for Trump in November…Gindler immigrated to New York from Ukraine in 1995, a few years after the fall of the Soviet Union.-Business Insider
These sentiments aren’t unique in the Russian-Ukrainian Diasporas. It gives a clear insight into the environment Vindman grew up in except for one thing. The Russian Diaspora found their expression through voting and adding to the American experience like many Diasporas. According to official numbers, about 35% of the Russian Diaspora feels this way.
Even after Vindman’s family emigrated to Little Odessa in the 1970s, the Ukrainian Diaspora were known as political animals, or to be kind, the activists-activist. They still are today. Not content with the American civic experience, they showed how much they are willing to tilt the table during election 2016.
What does this mean in 2019 for the Russian Diaspora? It means going forward the only representation they have in Congress today is provided by Ukrainian nationalists. The Ukrainian Diaspora of which Alexander Vindman is a solid part of represents Russian émigré interests at the Congressional level.
That’s tilting the table.
“We represent and coordinate the Russia diaspora. We pay special attention to those who have recently left Russia due to the considerable deterioration of the political and economic situation.
The Free Russia Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nongovernmental U.S.-based organization, led by Russians abroad that seeks to be a voice for those who can’t speak under the repression of the current Russian leadership. We represent and coordinate the Russia diaspora. We pay special attention to those who have recently left Russia due to the considerable deterioration of the political and economic situation. We are focused on developing a strategic vision of Russia ‘After Putin’ and ‘Without Putinism’ and a concrete program for the transition period. We will continue to inform international policy-makers, mass media and opinion leaders on the real situation in Russia…We maintain our extensive networks of key political, business and civil society leaders throughout Russia. This gives us access to news and events in real-time. In addition, we are a hub for recently transplanted Russians and experts on every aspect of Russian society.” Free Russia Foundation
- They U.S. policymakers on events in Russia in real-time
- Support the formulation of an effective and sustainable Russia policy in the U.S.
This is an Atlantic Council production and Michael D. Weiss is on the Board of Directors. What’s notable is they have two locations. One in Washington DC to be close to policymakers and the other is Free Russia House in Kyiv vul. Kyrylivska, 26/2 Kyiv, Ukraine 04071
Like I said, Ukrainians like Alexander Vindman are trying to represent the Russian Diaspora and promote Ukraine and the Ukrainian Diaspora’s interests.
The basis for understanding why Vindman is clumsily trying to push Donald Trump’s impeachment can be found in the following post. This girl left a mid-west university to relive the NAZI experience her grandparents had. If they were UPA, her grandparents were involved with committing the Holocaust and mass murder. This was written just after Maidan ended and months before the civil war in Ukraine began.
“I have often thought of my ancestors and how they must have felt during WWII (and earlier liberation movements) and the partisan struggle to liberate Ukraine from totalitarian powers. I’ve always been fascinated by WWII and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), but never in my life did I think I would feel what they felt, get a taste of war, death, and the fight for freedom, such uncertainty, and love for Ukraine in a context similar to theirs…These sentiments which were felt by Ukrainians in WWII have been transferred to a new generation of Ukrainians who are reliving the liberation movement, re-struggling for a free, prosperous, and democratic Ukraine. Of course, EuroMaidan and Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine …. I feel that I was guided to Ukraine because the love for and attachment to Ukraine was passed down from my grandparents, and as they couldn’t return…My grandparents’ generation fight for freedom didn’t succeed, there was no independent Ukraine after the war, and so being intelligentsia and having taken part in the liberation struggle, my relatives would have been persecuted under the Soviets.
Thus in 1944 when the Soviets were again approaching western Ukraine, my grandparents had to flee west…Eventually sotnias(defense/ military units) were formed during EuroMaidan and I couldn’t help but think that the last time sotnias were formed was during the war by the UPA…The UPA slogan “Glory to Ukraine” and response “Glory to the Heroes” as well as the UPA songs sounded from maidan’s across the country, and the black and red UPA flags flew next to the yellow and blue ones. There are in fact a lot more parallels between WWII and EuroMaidan/ the Russian invasion…And once we finally had a taste of victory, finally ousted the corrupt president, finally felt we had a chance to completely reboot the country, root out the Soviet mentality once and for all.”- Areta Kovalsky
To drive it home, long after LTV Vindman’s youth was over, NAZI monsters are still to be emulated in New York and CT.
Can Waffen SS officers and mass murderers like Stepan Bandera be Catholic patron saints in cities like New York, Philadelphia, Stamford CT, or Boston in the year 2015?
“On October 16, 2011, members of the 54th branch of CYM “Khersones” in Stamford, CT attended a mass and requiem service in honor of the great Ukrainian hero and freedom fighter, Stepan Bandera. It was the first time since its’ inception that the branches’ members took part in an organized activity together with the greater Ukrainian community of Stamford.
The SUM members and the faithful present that day enjoyed a beautiful and emotional homily about the life and achievements of Stepan Bandera delivered by Reverend Bohdan Danylo, Rector of St. Basil’s Seminary in Stamford. He instructed the children on how they can model their own lives on Bandera’s by following his example of self-sacrifice and unwavering dedication to his country. Following the homily, Father Bohdan distributed candles to each child which burned brightly during a stirring execution of the prayer “Vichnaya Pam’yat” in honor of the great hero of the Ukrainian nation.”
If you understand the tender emotion expressed watching protesters and police die, you can understand the mind of a Ukrainian nationalist. Vindman is no exception. His history, heroism, and sense of duty don’t cover him or excuse him. He reported no crimes that were committed by the sitting President he is trying to impeach. He only said he felt bad for Ukraine. That’s not good enough.
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