Walter C. Uhler
When it comes to recent events in Ukraine, Russia’s “White Book,” unlike the New York Times, does not claim to deliver “all the news that is fit to print.” More modestly, it simply claims to address the “violations of human rights and the rule of law in Ukraine” from November 2013 through March 2014.
Such modesty is in order, because the “White Book” inexcusably fails to mention the 30 November 2013 assault on hundreds of protestors in Kiev by Ukraine’s riot police; an assault that provoked hundreds of thousands of protestors to take to the streets there and, thus, threaten the ability of corrupt President Viktor Yanukovych to remain in power.
According to the New York Times (1 December 2013), the assault created a “new revolutionary urgency” among the hundreds of thousands who took to the streets of Kiev. In fact, such “revolutionary urgency” would return to Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square) a few times during the month of December. But it didn’t last.
Nevertheless, the false idea of a “revolution” against Yanukovych’s corrupt, pro-Russia government became a staple in Western mainstream media reporting. At the Times, it was based upon gross incompetence, at best, and malicious dishonesty, at worst. But it served to distort and obscure events, as well as close minds throughout the West.
For example, consider David M. Herszhenhorn’s Times article on December 1 titled, “Thousands Demand Resignation of Ukraine Leader.” While it waxed euphoric about a “new revolutionary urgency,” it failed to say on word about the violence perpetrated by the neo-Nazi group, Right Sector (Pravyi Sektor).
In contrast to the incompetence or dishonesty of Mr. Herszhenhorn, in early January 2014 the highly respected Deputy Director of the Center for Society Research (Kiev), Volodymyr Ishchenko, claimed: “For several hours on December 1, 2013 protesters were violently storming the unarmed police line near the Presidential administration building, until they themselves were finally attacked by the riot police, resulting in the bloodiest street confrontation in the whole history of independent Ukraine, with more than 300 people injured. Despite the popular version blaming the violence on some ‘provocateurs’ numerous investigations show that the overwhelming majority of attackers were the far right and neo-Nazi militants from so called ‘Right-wing sector,’ which unites various nationalist groups participating in Euromaidan.”