Yesterday we met 12-year-old Maxim Tkachuk, a talented Ukrainian boy from Volhynia. Blessed by the Muse of Euterpe, Max brought glory to his family and his country by winning a children’s song contest in England. Unfortunately, not everybody was thrilled by his choice of song or costume. Dressed up like a pint-sized Soviet Red Army soldier, Maxim belted out “Smuglyanka“, a Soviet composition that has entered the standard Russian “folk song” repertory. This song is wildly popular everywhere in the Russian-speaking world. As I mentioned, from time to time flashmobs of Ukrainian dissidents break out into this song, along with other faves such as “Dark Eyes” and “Moscow Nights”. It’s their way of sticking their thumbs into the collective eyes of the Banderite Nazis who have ruled the Ukraine since 2014. And who forbid any culture pertaining to the “Russian world”.
Since the theme of the English song contest was “World War II”, Maxim could have gone in a different direction: He could have sung a song (if such exists) about the glorious deeds of Stepan Bandera’s followers, as they sucked up to the Nazi occupiers and beset themselves killing thousands of Jews, Poles, and Russians. Instead, Maxim decided to celebrate the winning side of the war, and to honor his ancestors appropriately. In this regard, one should note the strong associations between the Smuglyanka song and the Ukraine. The song was written in 1940 by Yakov Shvedov (lyrics) and Anatoly Novikov (music). It was commissioned by the Kiev Military District of the Soviet army and was written in the style of a Moldavian folk song. Unfortunately, the resulting product was considered (by Party eyebrows) frivolous and not encouraged; but really came into its own 2 decades later, when performed in the light-hearted war movie “Only old men go into battle”, by Ukrainian singer Leonid Bykov. In the film Bykov’s character is teased a lot, by his fellow soldiers, about being from the Ukraine. At one point they are flying over Donetsk, and he jokes: “Hey, that’s my house down there!” Here is a scene from that 1973 film, illustrating the ethnic collegiality and unity of purpose which the song represents:
And it’s not just B.S. Happy-Talk Soviet propaganda! One needs to keep in mind that, during the war, the vast majority of Ukrainians (in the order of hundreds of thousands) fought on the winning side; and only a relative handful (in the order of thousands, perhaps 10,000 or so at most) fought on the side of the Nazi losers. And yet, tragically, the spawn of this handful, this minority, eventually came to power and now rule the Ukraine with a tight, totalitarian fist, forbidding all speech, deeds, and even thought that contradict their own narrow, degenerate, and vicious point of view. In their spare time when not tearing down statues of historical figures and war heroes, they have even passed totalitarian legislation forbidding speech and the display of Russian/Soviet “symbolica”. It goes without saying that these Nazis were mightily pissed at Maxim’s feat. Which they most likely regarded as a stunt.
Never ones to shy away from violent deeds or language, the Banderites lashed out at the boy on social media. Calling him a “son of a bitch traitor” and other, much ruder names. The political party Svoboda, which is a full out Nazi party, launched a propaganda campaign against Maxim, using their Party press and also Facebook. It should be noted that Svoboda can barely garner any votes, and yet they wield extraordinary power in the Ukraine, due to their armed street goons. Whenever they verbally attack someone, then that person better watch out; because violence is never far behind the hateful words.
Reporter Nikolai Storozhenko: Let us start with the atmosphere in Ukrainian society. It is very unhealthy. A totalitarian intolerance for “other” opinions, and the employment of Terror against those who think otherwise and do not conceal that fact. This is particularly the case when a citizen of the Ukraine is representing his or her country abroad. Whether it’s an athletic, or some other kind of competition. Any deviation from the expected behavior or “party line” is swiftly punished, without regard for gender, age, or services to one’s country. Another prime example is the boxer Alexander Usik, who also refuses to share the patriotic cannibalism of the patriots. And who is not afraid to make this clear to everyone. […]
The latest scandal, in this regard, was an interview with Yury Bardash, a choreographer, singer, and musical producer. After an interview in which he sharply laid out his own opinion of the conflict in the Donbass region, Yury was asked, “What do you think will happen to you after saying this?” Yury replied: “If you don’t have the right, in this life, to express your own opinion, then why even bother going on living?”
Of course, it’s one thing to be a powerful boxer who can defend himself; or a self-made entrepreneur with a lot of money. But with Maxim, we are talking about a sensitive 12-year-old child who lives in an ordinary house with only his grandmother and aunt to protect him. Who is now being subjected to open aggression, coming at him from grown-up men; and not just any grown-ups, but violent ideological fanatics devoid of conscience or morality, who operate with complete impunity and rule the streets.
How has Maxim been affected by this persecution? How is this sensitive child holding up to the verbal abuse?
[to be continued]