These articles were originally published by this blog on December 3, 2014 and are being republished on the occasion of EURO 2016 now underway in France, in which Ukraine is competing. Violent clashes took place on June 11 between English and Russian hooligans in Marseille. (Note: On June 14, in a brazen political maneouvre, EUFA arbitrarily levied Russia with a suspended disqualification and €150,000 fine as French authorities set to deport up to 50 Russian fans. No action was taken against England.)
“We have yet to win back our symbols and to uphold them.” Condemn this growing fascism!
Oleksandr Hlyvynskyi, press attaché of Ukraine’s national football team, asked UEFA for permission to use “SS-Galicia” logos Hlyvynskyi said this during a roundtable discussion on the subject “The patriotic dimension of football: Fan culture.”
Hlyvynskyi denies the open use of Nazi symbols at Ukrainian stadiums, as previously alleged by international organizations, in particular FARE (Football Against Racism in Europe).
According to the press attaché, in a situation where “Ukraine is conducting a national-liberation struggle,” slogans such as “Glory to Ukraine!”, “Glory to heroes!”, “Ukraine above all,” and “Glory to the nation” are simply a matter of perception. “We have yet to win back our symbols and to uphold them. These are the trident and the blue-and-yellow flag, Roman Shukhevich and Stepan Bandera, because we still have to argue that they are not fascists,” he said. (Bandera and Shukhevich were murderers and criminals, both trained in the Munich Military Academy by the Nazis. The two fascists were head of the so-called Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), which killed about 90,000 Polish and Jewish civilians.– Ed) *
Hlyvynskyi is confident that there were few grounds for UEFA’s decision to disqualify the Lviv stadium over the use of Nazi symbols. “If we talk about the symbol of the SS Galicia Division (a Waffen-SS division formed with Ukrainians under the command of Hitlerite German officers. – Ed), these are Sich riflemen, not the German SS. This is the history of our country, not the history of fascism,” he alleged.
In 2013 FIFA upheld Ukraine sanctions for racist abuse, Nazi salutes in Lviv
AP | ZURICH (Nov. 27, 2013) – FIFA has rejected Ukraine’s appeal against sanctions imposed after fans racially abused their own black player and made Nazi salutes at a World Cup qualifying match.
FIFA previously criticized the “shameful” incidents at the Sept. 6 qualifier played in Lviv, which is bidding to host the 2022 Winter Olympics.
FIFA said Wednesday that its appeals committee confirmed Arena Lviv is barred from staging qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup. The stadium hosted three matches at the 2012 European Championship.
Ukraine must also play its first home qualifier on the 2018 program in an empty stadium.
“FIFA also insists on strict punishments to send out a strong message that discrimination has no place in the game,” the governing body said in a statement.
The Ukrainian football federation, which was also fined 45,000 Swiss francs ($50,000), can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
FIFA said it warned the federation about future conduct.
FIFA acted on reports from monitoring group Fare, which attended Ukraine’s 9-0 victory over San Marino on Sept. 6.
Fare reported “Nazi salutes and racist monkey noises targeting Edmar,” a Brazil-born Ukraine international player who is black, and that “neo-Nazi banners were on display.”
(FIFA also noticed that an estimated “group of 30 people made monkey noises and moves with their hands” after Edmar scored. Afterward, a person displayed a t-shirt with a big “88” on the front, a neo-Nazi code widely used to signify “Heil Hitler” referring to the eighth letter in the Latin alphabet – H.)
In a ruling published in September, FIFA’s disciplinary panel said that “the offensive, denigratory and discriminatory actions of a group of Ukrainian supporters were shameful.”
Ukraine lost to France last week in the World Cup playoffs.
According to FIFA’s Sept. 11 letter addressed to FFU, there were nine incidents of pyrotechnical devise use, which contravenes the governing body’s match safety regulations.
The letter then reported that a banner of the “14th SS-Volunteer Division ‘Galizien’ from World War II” was displayed, a division initially made up of Ukrainians that fought for Nazi Germany, and which bears a lion and Ukraine’s colours of blue and yellow.
*Endnote: SS Galicia Division
In fact, the Galicia Division was a Ukrainian military formation within the German armed forces in the Second World War, created in Western Ukraine (specifically the Galicia District of the German-occupied Generalgouvernement) to fight on the Eastern front against Soviet forces. The14th Waffen SS Division (Galicia) was denounced as a criminal organization at the Nuremberg Trials.
The formation was created as the 14th division of the “armed SS” (Waffen-SS), one of many Waffen-SS divisions composed of non-German volunteers and conscripts in various countries occupied by Germany. Its creation was announced on 28 April 1943 in Lviv. Initially, the division consisted mainly of Ukrainians from Galicia, but subsequently it also took on recruits from other parts of Ukraine, including Soviet army personnel taken prisoner by the Germans. The division, as part of the German 13th Army Corps, fought in a battle near Brody (about 100 km east of Lviv) against advancing Soviet forces.The result was hardly heroic. In the decisive battle of Brody in July 1944, the Galizia Division was decimated. Of the 10,000-11,000 soldiers of the Galicia Division who took part in the battle, several thousand were killed or taken prisoner, some merged with the local population and others escaped the encirclement.With the tide turning against them, the increasingly desperate nazis rebuilt the Galizia Division. A significant number of those who survived the battle joined the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, while about 3,000 returned to the division.
With the Third Reich in its final death throes, in March 1945 the division was hastily renamed the First Division of the Ukrainian National Army, but as the Swedish historian Per Anders Rudling has pointed out: “On 28 April 1945, nine days before the surrender of the division to the British and Americans in Austria, the division’s journal Do Boiu!/Zum Kampf! still carried the SS symbol, the Siegrunen, and the subtitle Ukrainian military journal of the Grenadier Division of the Waffen-SS in its letterhead. It carried a large tribute to SS-Brigadenfuehrer Fritz Freitag on his 51st birthday and an article about the struggle of the German capital and enthusiastic accounts about how ‘the forces of Bandera’ and the UPA [Ukrainian Insurgent Army] fought the Judeocommunist intruders.” At the beginnning of May 1945, when Germany’s capitulation was immiment, it was decided that, to avoid capture by Soviet forces, the division should surrender to the British 8th Army, which had already entered Austria. On 8 May, a few hours before the German surrender to the USSR, the division was ordered to retreat from the front. Most of its personnel (about 10,000 men) surrendered to the British and were interned in Italy before being subsequently transferred to the U and then to0 Canada.
2,000 members of the Ukrainian-based Galicia Division came to Canada after the Second World War, even though they were members of the Nazi SS and fought for the Nazis against the Soviet Union and its allies, including Canada.
The repeated massacre of Polish civilians throughout the war are today the subject of Polish protests.
With a news file from http://en.ukraina.ru/news/20141126/1011293822.html and historical information from Former soldiers of the Galicia Division by Roman Krawec and this Morning Star story.
Related reading on this website
“The ‘match of death’: When Dynamo Kiev defied the Nazis,” August 1, 2005
Slowly, each player raised his arm, only to snap it back into their chests and shout ‘FitzcultHura’, which loosely translated means ‘long live sport’ …