Ukraine: Oliver Stone’s View

In this important overview of the historical divisions in Ukraine that have evolved into the present invasion by Russia. Oliver Stone explores and explains Ukraine’s legacy of nazism – the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), Stephan Bandera, Mykola Lebed, Dmytro Dontsov, and the imbrication of the neo-nazi movement in contemporary Ukrainian politics. This fascist tendency in Ukraine is represented by figures and organizations like Oleg Tyagnibok, Svaboda, Dimitry Yarosh, Trizub, The Right Sector, Andriy Parubiy, and the Social-National Party (SNPU).

Particularly revealing is Stone’s explication of the USA’s involvement in fostering and instrumentalizing these far-right nationalist forces in their war against the Soviet Union during the cold war and, even after perestroika, against Russia. Stone presents abundant evidence of these machinations, during the Euromaidan revolution, including the infamous phone call between the US Assistant Secretary of State for Europe, Victoria Nuland, and the US Ukraine.- ‘Fuck the EU’! Another important revelation in this documentary is the nature and extent of rupture between Ukraine and and its Russian citizens in the East and the South.. There is, it seems, a civil war taking place, one that has been downplayed by the mainstream Western media.

Ukraine on Fire is the first of two documentaries directed by Igor Lopatonok and produced by Oliver Stone on the emerging situation in Ukraine.

It’s Time to be Clear 6

Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Franco’s Spain, Salazar’s Portugal, Papadopoulos’ Greece, Pinochet’s Chile, and Suharto’s Indonesia are the 7 regimes that Laurence W. Britt analyzed to develop his set of fascistic characteristics. Like Umberto Eco before him, he came up with 14 key characteristics, which he construed as fascist and proto-fascist means of obtaining, expanding, and maintaining power. He presented this list in an Op-Ed titled Fascism Anyone? in Volume 23, No. 2 Spring 2003 of ‘Free Inquiry’ as follows –
1. Powerful and continuing expressions of nationalism.
2. Disdain for the importance of human rights.
3. Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause.
4. The supremacy of the military/avid militarism.
5. Rampant sexism.
6. A controlled mass media.
7. Obsession with national security.
8. Religion and ruling elite tied together.
9. Power of corporations protected.
10. Power of labor suppressed or eliminated.
11. Disdain and suppression of intellectuals and the arts
12. Obsession with crime and punishment.
13. Rampant cronyism and corruption.
14. Fraudulent elections.

While, as Daniel Malmer notes this list was not intended to be used to diagnose fascism in present governments, but rather characterize historical fascist governments, it is nevertheless interesting to see how many of these fascistic characteristic apply to the purported democracies of the world.

As a Malaysian, I find that the polity of my country seems to exhibit a good 11 of the Britt’s 14 traits. If this were not worrying enough for the long view, we have just joined a list of dysfunctional nations that have suspended parliamentary rule and instituted emergency powers in the context of the Covid-19 epidemic. This is the first such declaration of emergency since the aftermath of the race riots of May 13th 1969.

According to Bloomberg, the state of emergency was declared soon after some key leaders in the ruling coalition’s largest partner, United Malays National Organisation had called for a fresh election. They also report that the Pakatan Harapan opposition has admonished the Prime Minister for burdening the people with a declaration of emergency for the sake of saving himself. Oh Ei Sun, a senior fellow at the Singapore Institute of International Affairs has described the emergency as “totally unnecessary” and that “If you’re not careful, we will slip from parliamentary democracy into a rule by diktat.”