Ukrainian Journalists In Danger: Add Miroslava Berdnik

To the list of Ukrainian journalists in imminent danger, add the name Miroslava Alexandrovna Berdnik.  PolitNavigator reports that Berdnik was arrested yesterday around 8:30 AM (Kiev time) by Ukrainian security forces.  Berdnik latest book “Пешки в чужой игре”  (“Pawns in Another Man’s Game”) was placed on the list of forbidden books by the Ukrainian secret police.  The legal statute being applied to these forbidden thoughts and writings is “Attempt against territorial integrity of the Ukraine”.  Such books are forbidden to be written, read, sold, or disseminated.  Defiance brings about a visit to SBU Headquarters, which is apparently what happened to Berdnik yesterday.

Journalist and writer MIroslava Berdnik

The Navigator piece goes on to say that Berdnik has been holing up in the Zaporozhie region of Ukraine in recent months, being treated for some illness and also hiding from the Ukrainian nationalists.  Their threats had forced her to flee from Kiev.

Since early 2014 Berdnik has stood tall as an opponent of the Kiev junta and the Banderite political parties which came to power.  For example, in March of 2014 she gave a speech to the Israeli Knesset regarding the crimes of the Ukrainian nationalists.

Here is Berdnik’s wiki page written in Ukrainian.  She was born in 1958, the daughter of a Soviet dissident sci-fi writer named Oles Berdnik.  Miroslava was trained as a biologist and botanist; however, in 2004 around the time of the Orange “Revolution” (the first Maidan), Miroslava decided to become a journalist.  Berdnik was inspired and horrified by the rising tide of Ukrainian nationalism.  She became a dedicated anti-fascist publicist.

I cannot find information about Berdnik’s ethnicity;  I am only guessing, based on her name and the fact that she spoke to the Knesset, that she is Jewish.  Which doesn’t mean much anyhow, because many prominent Jews, including Ukrainians, have given their support to the fascist Kiev junta.  In the end, this conflict is not about ethnicity, but about worldview overall, not to mention geo-politics and the Great Game.  A Game which eats ups individuals and sacrifices mere pawns for the greater glory of the world’s top 2%.

Be that as it may, Berdnik’s body of work show that she is a prolific writer and journalist who has unwaveringly criticized the Kiev regime and the Ukrainian nationalists.  She has defended the rights of the Russian-speaking minority, spoken out for the necessity of friendship between Ukraine and Russia; opposed the crimes of the Kiev junta; and yet, according to friends, has always portrayed herself as a Ukrainian patriot.

Who is now in imminent danger not because of anything that she did, but because of things she thought and spoke out loud, and wrote down, living as she does, in an increasingly fascist and totalitarian state, where people can be punished violently for their political views.

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9 Responses to Ukrainian Journalists In Danger: Add Miroslava Berdnik

  1. Pavlo Svolochenko says:

    Berdnik is indispensable, especially with Buzina dead.

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  2. yalensis says:

    Here are some more details about Berdnik’s arrest, provided by her daughter, Irina Bessmertnaya, in an interview to the Ukrainian newspaper “Ukrainia.ru”

    “I was asleep that morning when Mama left to see the doctor. She suffers from chronic genyantritis and stomatological problems, she wasn’t feeling well. However, she never made it to the doctor’s and had to return home, because she was met on the way by officers of the Zaporozhie Security Forces. They led her back into our flat. I don’t recall exactly how many there were, at least three. Their behavior was very correct. They read out to her the search warrant, it was in connection with some kind of criminal case, but I am sorry I cannot remember exactly which case they were talking about, I had just woken up, and their entry was completely unexpected to me.”

    Irina went on to say that the search took up around three hours. “They removed Mama’s computer, our phones, flash drives, and a brochure about the Great Patriotic War. Then they said, that they were taking Mama away for questioning, and after they finished questioning her, they might summon me. I told the officers that I don’t know Zaporozhie very well, so could I just come along with them at that time. They agreed. Right now I am in the SBU. They are still interrogating Mama, and afterwards it will be my turn.”

    “Ukraina.ru” notes that Irina normally lives in Kiev, where she is a student. But for the past 2 years she has been coming to Zaporozhie during school holidays, to visit with her mom.

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    • Pavlo Svolochenko says:

      Ominous, but at least she wasn’t taken by anonymous thugs in camo. SBU can’t exactly deny responsibility for what happens to a prisoner in their custody.

      As an aside, ‘Bessmertny’!? There’s a name that’s just asking for trouble.

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      • yalensis says:

        She sounds like a teenager to me: “Well, I was so sleepy that I almost slept through my mom’s arrest, and I don’t remember how many guys there were….”

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  3. yalensis says:

    Today’s developments in the Berdnik story:

    Before her official interrogation earlier today, 3 SBU operatives spent an hour and a half with her “off the record”, attempting to glean from her, who leaked the information to the world media about the search of her flat.

    Miroslava Berdnik told the story to the newspaper “Ukrainia.ru”.
    “I answered them thusly: When I was still a child, I witnessed how the KGB searched the home of my father. He was given a copy of the search warrant. After a certain amount of time, the search warrant was leaked to the Western press. He was summoned again and asked: “Was it he who leaked this to the Western press?” My father replied, that two copies of the search warrant existed: One copy with them, and one with him. He still has his copy. The conclusion is that they themselves leaked the other copy to the West. In other words, the SBU itself leaked the search to the West,” Berdnik concludes sardonically.

    Berdnik also communicated to the press, that the SBU offered her a type of Sophie’s choice: If she does not admit her guilt then she is threatened with Statute #258, in other words, 15 years. Whereas if she admits her guilt then the case will be handed to the prosecutor, and she might serve only a year and a half on probation.

    “I then asked them, well, what if I am innocent?” Berdnik went on to say that the inspector conducted himself correctly, and that she will return for additional questioning within a week. At which time she will appear, but this time accompanied by her attorney.

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