The Ukrainian Liberation Movement in the Interwar Period (1923-1939)

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Kvit, Serhii
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It is extremely difficult to conceptualize the complexities of the Ukrainian component during the interwar period, despite the relatively short timeframe involved. We see this in the current historical discussion, which mostly is taking place in mass media, as an integral part of the current political discourse. We have two main problems concerning methodology. The first one – contemporary political correctness is often used to interpret the events of the interwar period and the Second World War, even though the political context has changed dramatically since 1945. The second problem is related to long standing traditions of Russian propaganda, which under Putin’s guidance have gained renewed strength through fake news and historical revisionism that can be described as hybrid post-truth informational aggression on a global scale. The key point in Putin’s propaganda intrusion into history is the thesis that the modern Ukrainian state is not the result of the Ukrainians’ struggle for independence, but is a consequence of the "evolution" of the Soviet system. Accordingly, an independent Ukraine was produced completely by accident in 1991. However, to arrive at this conclusion the logical sequence of events had to be changed. While, in fact, the collapse of the Soviet Union was largely caused by the unwillingness of Ukrainians to live in the evil empire, the neo-Soviet school of history attempts to present Ukrainian efforts to gain independence in a peculiarly racist way: as a manifestation of their "natural" (innate) brutality, cruelty, treachery, and anti-Semitism, or as a result of intrigues by Austro-Hungarian, Polish or German secret services. Hence, Ukrainians are not fit to be considered a political nation, much less an independent state worthy of a place within the comity of the nationstate system. My exposition will focus on discussing how, under the conditions of statelessness, Ukrainians sought to defend their national interests on the eve of the Second World War. Task of this work is to trace the general logic of the processes and ideas.
The Ukrainian Liberation Movement, political correctness, Second World War, propaganda, Soviet Union, conference materials
Kvit S. The Ukrainian Liberation Movement in the Interwar Period (1923-1939) / Serhiy Kvit // Конференція Дмитра Штогрина : збірник матеріалів / [передм. та відп. ред. С. М. Квіт]. - Київ : ВД "Києво-Могилянська академія", 2020. - С. 167-174.