Ukrainian national revolution: some theoretical aspects

Автор: . 22 Жов 2016 в 0:01

Petro Ivanyshyn


Ukrainian national revolution: some theoretical aspects


The problem of the revolution (war, European integration or corruption) in the modern post Maidan Ukrainian society is of great importance nowadays. This problem is actively discussed in mass media and on talk shows, also in some serious and analytical researches at all levels. And very often quite different and opposite things are meant.  Someone, when mentioning this social phenomenon trembles and falls into hysterics, and someone blesses it as the only salvation for the nation as sacred purpose. The revival of such mass interests is natural. It was assisted by the permanent revolutionary process at the time of late Perestroika and Independence, which had three culminating points:  the end of 1980s – the early 1990s, Pomaranchevyi Maidan (Orange Revolution in other words), and Winter Maidan in 2013-2014 years.

However, most of the discussions about the revolution, its methods and goals are lacking not only professionalism, philosophical, cultural and political science depths, but rooting in Ukrainian natio-sophist tradition, in fact in the experience of such powerful and ideological, cultural and political phenomenon of nationalism . Let’s try, at least, superficially, within several important aspects and natio-centric experiences to outline national vision (view) and to direct the reader’s thinking to this hermeneutic side.

On the whole the revolution is examined as the fundamental, qualitative structural change of one system into another which occurs in definite time (not always short period of time). That’s why, the revolution quite differs from the evolution of the reforms (as partial system changes), the revolutions, the rebellions or the riots. As the systems vary we distinguish different types of the revolutions: political, cultural, civilized, aesthetic, religious, economic, technical, scientific, intellectual and so on.

Among the most important types of the political revolutions we can outline two types. Due to the type of the enslaver two types of the revolution are distinguished: the external (when the enslaver is foreign) and the internal (when the power (government) system which consists of its own citizens requires qualitative changes). And due to the goals and interests we distinguish: the social (class) and the national (including the interests of the entire nation) revolution. The methods of the political revolutions are also quite different. They can be peaceful (both legitimate, including parliamentary, semi- and fully illegitimate): the strikes, the protests, the pickets, the demonstrations, the public meetings, the information (mass media) operations, the blockade of administrative buildings or transport routes, the elections, the referendums, the lustration etc. Also they can be  non-peaceful (armed): the street fighting, the conflicts with police and opponents, the terrorism, the expropriation, the secret anti systemic movement, the partisan struggle, the civil war, and others. And also they (methods) can combine peace and armed elements within one revolutionary stream.

Anyway the understanding of the revolutionary processes and individual phenomena endured all the time (including writers or politicians- practitioners), but the most profound philosophical and scientific concepts in the XX and XXI centuries were offered by Max Weber, Oswald Shpengler, Pitrim Sorokin, James Davis, Ted Hur, Charles Tilly, Chalmerz Johnson, Clifford Girtz, Anthony Smith, Ted Skokpol, Edward Liutvak and others.

Ukrainian political and philosophical experience of the understanding of revolutionary phenomena has quite a long tradition relying on the conceptual for the formation of the ideology of Ukrainian nationalism creative works of Taras Shevchenko, Ivan Franko, Mykola Mikhnovsky, Evhen Konovalets,  Dmytro Dontsov and others. And the key concept for natio-centric Ukrainian thinkers and politicians is the concept of the national revolution. And it is not accidentally. The lack of such  type of the social and civil systemic change became obvious after Ukrainian loss in the War of Liberation 1917-1920 years. In this connection in the inter-war period there are established the effective and revolutionary mass organizations of the former soldiers and youth (UVO, GUNM, LUN, SUNM, subsequently merged into OUN) the work with the revolutionary masses is led, the hundreds of diverse revolutionary actions are made, the nationalist philosophy, aesthetics, science, arts are developed by the nationalist authors and others. And all this is made for the sake of getting national state as a political ideal – the Ukrainian Independent State. Later this revolutionary impulse (with the beginning of World War Two), despite the complexity of the development, organizational divisions and painful human losses, gets the continuation in the struggle of UPA, proclaiming of Carpathian Ukraine (Carpatho- Ukraine), state act of June 30, 1941, creating UHVR, secret struggle in the USSR and the activity of  foreign parts OUN in exile.

During this Soviet-colonial period, extremely unfavorable for the development of Ukrainian nation, the greatest theorist of the national revolution was the leader of OUN (b), Stepan Bandera. The volume of his ideological works arranged by Yaroslav Stetsko in 1978, got the title  “Prospects of Ukrainian revolution.” [1] This general theme is deeply and broadly interpreted by the author almost in all his works, but systematically and conceptually this revolutionary discourse is represented in the following: “The value of the masses and their coverage” (1946), “A word to Ukrainian nationalist-revolutionaries abroad” (1948) “Ukrainian national revolution, but not just anti-regime resistance” (1950), “Against the ideological disarmament of the liberation struggle” (1951), “The promotion of the liberation revolution against the backdrop of the war” (1951), “The task of OUN nowadays” (1951), “On the issue of the basic stuff of the national liberation revolution” (1953), “The question of the atom war and the liberation revolution” (1957-58), “For complete political structure” (1958), “Over the grave of Evhen Konovalets” (1958), “Where must the ways come together?”(1959). The most significant ideological understanding of the revolution can be found in a single monograph of the author “Prospects of Ukrainian national liberation revolution” (1958), written for the purpose of internal use.

Let’s consider the main points of S.Bandera’s ideology. First, the author defines political revolution as the “radical change, covering content and structure of the state, political, social, spiritual and economic life of one or more nations.” The essential feature of the revolution is “the change of the system, the change of the principal ideas and forces,” but this change to be revolutionary, should occur by acute and common struggle (and not evolutionary change of government through elections, plebiscites, and so on.). Therefore revolution covers “the whole process of the struggle, from its beginning to its end” and only the final stage shows “whether the revolutionary process fully deserves the name of revolution.” In this process, two main functions of the revolution are defined: 1) the destructive (destroying old system), and 2) the structural (construction of new system) (p.532-534). This revolution is considered as “indispensable form of the struggle for freedom” and as “the most humane form of” such struggle because its refusal leads to much more victims under occupational circumstances (p.250). Ukrainian experience of the destruction of the nation through three famishments, mass repressions, the death in the stuff of foreign armies, the processes of denationalization and others, only confirms the correctness of the nationalist thinker.

S.Bandera distinguishes two types of the revolution: 1) the “internal” (social) and 2) the external (“national liberation”) (p.249). As the phenomenon of the creation of the “independent” neocolonial states (implicitly dependent on the West or Russia), for which the national liberation becomes actual, “internal” problem in the postwar period is just conceived, the ideologist turns to another political systems: the national states, empires and states-colonies. These internal revolutions are considered as the “social, class” revolutions and the national liberation revolution are considered as national. Moreover, the national revolutions are outlined as broader than “internal” because the last are aimed to “change the state and social systems of the government.”

Instead, the “national revolution is called a revolutionary contest of one nation against another foreign nation enslavement, exploitation, deprivation of rights and possibilities of free development.” Two main features of the national revolution are: 1) the participation of the entire nation and 2) the competition for the basic change of the nation situation. The purpose of the national revolution is the creation of Ukrainian national state: “The completion of the national liberation revolution must be the reestablishment and the consolidation of Ukrainian Independent State.” The precondition for this goal implementation is the destruction of Soviet  occupation power in Ukraine. At the same time the nation should be ready to the post-revolutionary period and to the period “of national liberation war” with old and new colonialists (p.534-535, 594). The aim of the national revolution is determined by the natural content of the life of every enslaved nation, this is the competition “for freedom and truth, for God and Motherland” (p.628).

Rather deep and conceptual is Bandera’s determination of all important components and preconditions of the effective revolutionary activity. First of all, he emphasizes three main “elementary” motives of the revolutionary process, without which it is simply impossible: 1) the “revolutionary ideas”, 2) the “revolutionary organizations” and 3) the “revolutionary actions” (p.571).

The only productive revolutionary idea of Ukrainian nation is the national idea – the ideology of Ukrainian nationalism. The author believes that “our ideas are our greatest force, the most successful weapons” (p.253). One of the most important secrets of the revolution success is the coverage of the ideology of nationalism by all social sectors: “Organizing liberation revolution we should improve and circulate among people the national ideology, programs, liberation concepts, and form our own forces on the basis of it”(p.135). In another work in 1953, S.Bandera lays the stress on that the main part of the struggle with the enemy is the “struggle for the soul of a person, for ideological impact on the entire nation, for spreading the ideas and concepts of the liberation revolution among broad masses of people, their exception of this idea and therefore their accession to the side of the liberation struggle” (p.286). The main role in this spiritual warfare plays revolutionary propaganda, which has threefold purpose: 1) to give clear assessment of the situation, 2) to show the way out of it, and 3) to give resolution and eagerness to fight (p.261). At the same time the ideologist cautions against “ideological and programmatic opportunity” in favor of the particular political moment, which will weaken or distort the revolutionary idea (p.136).

The main revolutionary organization, as S.Bandera indicates, is national political order – Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists. OUN is “the main body” of national liberation struggle, its “backbone” and “leading political force.” Around OUN as the main body, according to Bandera’s theory there are created other broader ranges of revolutionary organizations like UPA or UHVR (p.262-263). However, it is not enough the very ideology for the nationalist organization, it should also be effective: “The revolutionary organization without any revolutionary action doesn’t fulfill any task and disappears.” Overall any revolutionary action is the system of the revolutionary actions and the organization of the work (p.287). It is followed from the revolutionary ideas, it “can have different forms and different tension that vary according to the circumstances” (p.772). That’s why the author stresses that it is not enough to accept the revolutionary activity as just passing actions and notes that the “rebellion army and military action are the parts of one of the functions and forms of the revolutionary struggle ” ( p.136, 139).

Within this liberation revolution we should distinguish two related processes: 1) “the revolutionary struggle against the enemy” and 2) “the mobilization of new and more people to this revolutionary struggle.” Instead, two main stages of the national revolution are: 1) the stage of permanent revolution in the situation unfavorable for the armed rebellion and 2) the national armed rebellion. Thus there are three tactics of the revolutionary struggle: 1) the secret, 2) the partisan and 3) the rebellion. And there are three kinds of the revolutionary mobilization: 1) the ideological and political (anti-Bolshevik propaganda, national ideas’ propagation among the masses of people), 2) the effective (the involvement of people to revolutionary actions) and 3) the organizational and personnel (the involvement to the ranks of revolutionary organizations) (p.572-573, 584, 577-578).

Another important question of the national liberation cause (point) is the formation of the personnel. S.Bandera formulates the requirements to the activists-revolutionaries: “As revolutionary liberation struggle belongs to the highest national competitions and includes all forms of the struggle (from the ideological, political to the military), and the revolutionary organization must include in its ideological system some political, military and conspiratorial formation-elements, that the active membership in this organization is the most difficult and most complete service of the nation. To be a member of this revolutionary liberation organization means to put himself, and his entire life to the liberation service, and to be ready to fulfill every order, every task, despite danger and difficulties. There are a lot of requirements to each member-revolutionary especially to the character, the ideology, the personal courage and the military activity. That’s why, the organizational and personnel mobilization is based on the principles of the voluntariness, the testing and the selection of the best, most relevant candidates” (p.578).

The revolutionary stuff is formed by the revolutionary system, the above-mentioned fundamental factors of the revolutionary recruitment of people: 1) the revolutionary idea (ideology), 2) the revolutionary organization that is spreading this revolutionary idea, and 3) the revolutionary action (active struggle with the enemy). So the problem of the personnel selection and training is taken away: all this should be done by the revolutionary movement within the struggle: “The creation and the formation of the personnel for the liberation struggle is the most significant task of the revolutionary process.” As for the leading personnel (the heads of various units), then they are chosen from the wider effective stuff, “which will better understand the ideological content of the national revolution, and whose character, abilities and skills will be suitable to the leading functions” (p.286 -289).

S.Bandera emphasizes that such persons should be ideological, patriotic, anti-imperial (at that time – the first anti-communist), who can have organic Ukrainian Cossack spirit. And the author cautions against the involvement of ideological communists and “unprincipled careerists” to the ranks of the revolutionaries (p.290-291).

Concerning the time and conditions of the revolutionary activity, Bandera develops the concept of “self-reliance”. He points out that “we cannot make the national liberation struggle dependent on  foreign forces” (p.597) and notes that we should expect neither war between  the Soviet Union and any other country, nor the evolution of Bolshevik system, only the “revolutionary struggle” (p.532). “The main basis for the real liberation revolutionary concept are its own forces and own struggle of oppressed by Bolshevism nations” (p.535). So the external factors must be taken into account, but they are subsidiary:  “The external conditions and forces may be quite important factors which assist the revolutionary liberation struggle, but they do not determine the very possibility and expediency of the struggle” (p.477). This revolutionary movement must be ready to fight against “two fronts”: Bolshevism and anti-communist imperialism (negatively tuned to Ukrainian national cause). Let’s note that it really happened during the Second World War, when OUN and UPA had to fight with the red and white Russian imperialists, with united in ROA Germans (so-called “Vlasivtsi”).

On the other hand, the author points to possible “united front of national liberation revolutions” of oppressed by Moscow nations (p.535-552). But the author also states that “only that nation, which have effective forces can be the partner for others” (p.597), because “every serious community must lead its own activities by any internal and external circumstances” (p.480). As to the combination of such liberation struggle with possible anti-Bolshevik War, Bandera notes that revolution should be done without waiting for the end of such war. The precondition of the beginning of Bolshevik action is the “psychological preparation for the revolution of the masses of people” and their weapons. The ideal psychological training is the following mobilization condition: that “all must know and must be ready” (p.260). At the same time in 1951, the author indicates the struggle against nationalism in the West as unfavourable external factors and explains its real reasons: “…the attempts to promote the way for political and economic imperialisms” (p.248).

Bandera’s concept of the revolutionary struggle remained actual for the program of OUN (b) even after the death of the author in 1959. Since the independence in 1991, many politicians (until the beginning of Russian-Ukrainian war in 2014, when most politicians were surprised that the national state system as such doesn’t exist) considered the purpose of the liberation movement accomplished, that’s why the newly created “state Ukraine” is identified with USSD. However, not all analysts agreed with this interpretation. The main ideologists of the national revolution of this period were the main leaders of Ukrainian organization “Trident” (Tryzub) named after Stepan Bandera, Vasil’ Ivanyshyn (1944-2007) and Dmytro Yarosh (born in 1971) who developed the ideas of Stepan Bandera and other classics of Ukrainian nationalism, but taking into account the fact that the qualitative change in the political system, the creation of Ukrainian national state must be held under different socio-political circumstances (independent from the Russian Empire).        The first person, who deeply defended Bandera’s concept was V.Ivanyshyn from the end of 1980. His main works concerning the theory of revolution, were following: “Nation. Statehood. Nationalism” (1992), “Ukrainian idea and prospects of the nationalist movement” (1999), “At the overcrowded crossroads” (2003), “Under the leadership of OUN and the name of Bandera” (2003), “The Order of Ukrainian Hope” (2004), “The political function of “Trident” named after Bandera” (2004), “Maidan-2 or the bridgehead of Ukrainian Freedom” (2006), “National Community” (2006), “Internal occupation – the war to destroy” (2006), “On the edge of the struggle ” (2006)[2].

The author considered that the declaration of independence of Ukraine in 1991 began a new phase of the national liberation struggle – the “state-creation (building)” (p.70). Thus the aim of the national revolution, as Bandera outlined it, is  only partially achieved: the country is liberated from communists and foreign Russian occupation, but Ukrainian national state (Ukrainian Independent State, “Ukrainian Ukraine”) is not gained. Moreover, there happened the gradual evolution of new post-colonial state system, which, after all, finally turned into the neo-colonial structure with variable geopolitical orientations of the power elites in times of V.Yushchenko and V.Yanukovych presidency (2005-2013), either to the West or to Russia. The ideologist outlined the stages of this anti-national systems as: from the dominance of pro-communist “band democracy” in the times of Leonid Kravchuk (p.159), through government indifference to the interests of the nation in general (p.176), the formation of “bureaucratic authoritarianism” (p. 284), the stimulation of the neocolonial processes by Russia and the West (p.339) the explicit Ukrainian ethnocide (deprivation of nationality, first of all language) (p.442), the clan-bureaucratic way of ruling in the presidential-parliamentary form of government and the clan- parliamentary way of ruling in the parliamentary- presidential form of government (p.445), until the final establishment of the neocolonial system “anti-nation, anti-Ukrainian, cosmopolitan and bureaucratic-oligarchic power” (p.588).

This “clan-oligarchic system” (p.696), in which even the president becomes just “the administrator of neo-colony” in 2006 V.Ivanyshyn  outlines by very accurate term “internal occupation regime”: the “internal occupation – is a form of the slavery, when the nation is under the power of anti-national internal forces that minimize the political rights of the native nation .., that capture and use only their own interests in the state mechanism, in the financial sector, economy, country’s information space, that try to divide artificially and demoralize, and destroy denationalize the enslaved nation, with the purpose to prevent its uniting under the banner of the national idea, its liberation struggle and its own national state creation” (p.845). The main feature of this criminal regime is not the corruption, not the robbery of people and the state, not the “socio-economic deformations” (all these are the results), but “first of all stateless and servitude state of the native nation, which in its native land and in its own country is threatened with complete destruction : purposeful and systematic” (p.845-846).

The real creator and master of the neo-colonial regime is mafia octopus – “foreign cosmopolitan and transnational oligarchic capital of the criminal origin” (p.845), whose unofficial slogan is “Ukraine without Ukrainians” (p. 847). The only way out of this fatal for the nation circle is the continuation and the logical completion of the national revolution: “We may finish the internal occupation only in one way: by the continuation of Ukrainian national liberation struggle and the implementation of Ukrainian national idea – the creation of Ukrainian national state with the all-embracing system of national democracy ” (p.846).

So V.Ivanyshyn, according to new circumstances of the political struggle, expands Bandera’s division: to the external (national) and the internal (social) revolutions. He outlines the availability and necessity of not only external national revolution (against the external invader), but  also internal national revolution (referred to internal occupier, internal imperialism) for any oppressed nation. The relevance of this revolutionary pair can be seen in all countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America (“new states” according to K.Hirts), which became independent in the nineteenth century or after World War II (from external colonialists), and at the same time these countries became dependent on internal colonialists. Deep images of these internally oppressed countries gave in their creative works such writers as: Taras Shevchenko (“Kings,” “Dream (comedy)”, “Saul”, “Epistle” (Poslanie)), Gabriel Garcia Marquez (“One Hundred Years of Solitude”, “Autumn of the Patriarch”), Mario P’uzo (“Sicilian”), Lina Kostenko (poetry since Ukraine’s  independence and the novel “Notes by Ukrainian Lunatic” (Zapiski ukrains’koho samashedshogo)), Yuri Shcherbakov (the trilogy “Chas smertohrystiv”, “Time of great game”, “Tyrant time”), novelists Yevhen Pashkovsky and Oles Ulyanenko, Ukrainian poets of postcolonial period – Petro Skunts, Borys Oliynyk, Pavlo Volvach, Igor Pavlyuk, Bogdan Tomenchuk etc., and  also producers Akira Kurosawa (“Seven Samurai”, “Bodyguard”), Elia Kazan (“Viva Sapata”), John Sterges (“The Magnificent seven”), Tom Grice (“One hundred guns”), Edward Tswick (“Blood diamond”), Miroslav Slaboshpytsky (“Tribe”), Carey Fukunaha (“Rootless animals”), producers of Russian serial “Gangster Petersburg” (movies 1-6) and others.

The nationalist author could not ignore this fact that in 1991 OUN proclaimed the “peaceful forms of the revolutionary struggle for USSD” (p.286). V.Ivanyshyn distinguishes two types of the national revolution: 1) the “national revolution as the national rebellion,” and 2) the “national revolution through democratic mechanism” (p.422). Good example of the latest type is provided by the author and is called  “Velvet Revolutions” in the former Soviet Union (except  Ukraine and Belarus). We can also name other successful peaceful revolutions against internal servitude, though with other (not nationalist) ideological signs, in Italy in 1922 and in Germany in 1932-34. At the same time V.Ivanyshyn notes the double purpose (task) of the internal national revolution in his works: 1) to do all qualitative revolutionary changes in the country, but 2) not to endanger Ukrainian statehood and independence (p.280, 430).

Ukrainian philosopher also points to the significant differences between the two internal revolutions: the social and the national. “The social revolution – he explains – has much narrower purpose: to achieve the social equity in the national wealth distribution by the change of the government, political and social systems. Its method is the class struggle, its driving force is offended class or classes.” The examples of such revolutions are: all socialist (proletarian) and liberalistic (bourgeois) revolutions in modern times. Instead, “the purpose of the national revolution is the realization of Ukrainian national idea, the creation of the state of Ukrainian nation (USSD). Its tasks are to provide the state status, the protection, recovery and the comprehensive (including social and economic) development of Ukrainian nation. The key feature of the national revolution is Ukrainian nation – the nation united by national idea” (p.324).    Pointing to the peaceful methods (“bloodless and creative” (p.332)) of the internal national revolution, V.Ivanyshyn notes that they must be effective – through the “pressure of organized people”: the protest (mass) rallies, the blockade of administrative buildings and transport routes, and others. And these protests must be carried out under the slogan: “You do not provide us with proper life conditions – we will not let you rule!” (p.334-337, 179). As it can be noted, all this was demonstrated by the organizations “Right Sector”, “Self Defense” and “Automaidan” during the rebellion of 2013-14. So the ideologist notes that “peaceful way” of the national liberation struggle is not limited to the “democratic-parliamentary” way (p.159, 168). We cannot organize political life without parties and we can destroy the social system (p.280). That’s why the recommendations of possible nationalist participation in the elections were developed in 2004 (p.804 etc.). The precondition of the successful revolution is the “ideological weapon of the nation” (according to V.Ivanyshyn, T.Shevchenko, S.Bandera (p.211)), because “the nation cannot be happy without the participation of this nation” (p.469). The important role in this process would have the creation of “Ukrainian National Communities” as the basic structures of “the system of creating Ukrainian national state” (p.697). Thus, the author names OUN” the only possible factor of the state and political consolidation” (as national revolutionary “political order” (p.305, 312)). This Order (according to Ivanyshyn’s theory) had to consolidate the nationalist movement with the help of OUN and nationalist youth organization (“Trident”) and Nationalist Party (CUN), (p.771). And the author will note in 2004 that since independence OUN had not offered their own ideology and program of the national state creation …”. However, the author believes that the revival of OUN will be necessary for the success of the national liberation movement (p.787, 788).

In 2006 V.Ivanyshyn defines his public position as the leader of “Trident” as to the revolutionary process. Responding to the question of the organizational Internet Conference the author notes that: “Of course, we can now turn to the radical actions, hoping it will awaken the society. But nationalism – is also great responsibility for the political activities. To hope that “Trident” will add thousands of people to the national liberation struggle and will win – is rather naive. And even if it would win, were then we able to create a different, better power for people? I think the President V. Yushchenko  also wanted to turn Ukraine into paradise. But what has he reached?

But let’s go on. Let’s suppose that we resorted to the removal of the government. We ourselves cannot win, we need the support of politicians and people. What kind of politics do we need? Maybe that, that even haven’t noted that our “Ukrainian” government is again without  Ukrainians ? (…)

And what will be the reaction for our actions of politically divided and disoriented people? If we touch any political party it can provoke the misunderstanding among people and in the best case we will destroy Organization and in the worst case we will provoke civil war and as usual, we’ll get new external occupiers and the nation will have new occupation authorities. There is no way out of this situation.

The revolutionary method of the act begins from the revolutionary thinking. And we have to do a lot that mass of people with national revolutionary way of thinking were included to the ranks of Ukrainian national state in Ukraine. Because the power is a socio-political system. And the system can be successfully opposed by another system. Otherwise we’ll have the replacement of power as it happened after V.Yushchenko’s victory or the unconscious rebellion, with the sea of blood, in which our independence and statehood will go down. But in both cases we’ll have more enslavement and discouragement of people.

So, not the rebellion but the revolution, not the chaos but the system, not the adventure but the nationalist work with people should be taken into account. The primary task is to change people’s attitude towards the government and their role in the country…”(p.879-881).

After V.Ivanyshyn’s death in 2007, this Bandera’s conception was developed  by his follower Dmitro Yarosh in the following works: “Ukrainian Revolution: XXI Century” (2009), “Allocution (Appeal) to Ukrainian people (2010),” In foreboding of the revolution ” (2011), “The march to Kyiv” (2011), “A word to the brothers: past, present and future” (2012), “Ukrainian political organization “Trident”” (2012). All these works were published in the book “Nation and Revolution” in 2012 and reprinted unchanged in 2015[3], indicating the immutability of the ideological orientations of D.Yarosh not only as the leader of “Trident”, but also as the leader of Ukrainian political movement “Right sector”.

Even in 2009 D.Yarosh indicates the presence of two main fronts in Ukraine. One of which is the internal that is the struggle against the occupation regime and the other two are the external that is the struggle with Moscow Empire and Western globalism (p.40). That’s why in 2010, “Trident” does not recognize the newly elected President Viktor Yanukovych, and describes him as “pro-Moscow” protégé and  as the enemy of “national independence of Ukrainian people” (p.64). The ideologist marks the emergence of a coherent revolutionary situation during the establishment of Yanukovych’s regime and stresses that it is impossible to overcome “internal occupation regime” using evolutionary methods, because  the authoritarian system of Yanukovych does not allow using the laws of the State Ukraine and the legitimate mechanisms of the change of power, and does not allow people that are not a part of the system to rule the country “(p.77).

So once more the necessity of the national revolution as “Holy War for God, Ukraine, Freedom” becomes updated (p.55), which includes the following: “National Revolution is not the rebellion, not the revolt and not the slaughter. These are the radical systemic changes in the life of the nation, made by the leading group supported by the masses. The aim of the National Revolution in Ukraine is to eliminate the internal occupation regime and to transfer all power to the hands of nationally awakened people”(p.52). The question is about “great goal” – to win the national state (USSD), and to form substantial conception of the struggle: “Liberation revolutionary struggle of Ukrainian people for Independent Ukraine USSD, led by their own nation under any condition, by all available methods, based on the ideology of Ukrainian nationalism of Stepan Bandera and under the unified leadership  of National revolutionary Order” (p.93).

In 2009 D.Yarosh outlines the following steps of the development of the national revolution: 1) the establishment and development of national Order, 2) the reestablishment of unified nationalist movement, 3) the time of national revolution, and 4) the consolidation, expansion and development of independent Ukraine (p.52). Two years later he concretizes the scheme focusing on the parliamentary elections in 2012: 1) the preparatory phase (forming national-revolutionary centers in the whole Ukraine), 2) the pre-election stage, and 3) the post-election, revolutionary stage, (“demonstrations of citizens in the capital and regional centers of the state”) (p.81-82).

Ukrainian classic nationalism is the revolutionary idea for D.Yarosh: “Taras Shevchenko, Mykola Mikhnovskyy, Dmytro Dontsov, Euhen Konovalets, Mykola Stsiborsky, Andrew Melnyk, Stepan Bandera, Oleh Olzhych, Jaroslav Stetsko Lev Rebet, Stephan Lenkavsky, Vasil’ Ivanyshyn – these above-mentioned persons are the heart of nationalism, the basic ideological postulates of which cannot be depreciated under any circumstances” (p.50). This position is penetrating all ideologists’ works:  “Ukrainian nationalism is the only state ideology answers all questions of our time and illuminates the future of our people” (p.102). Speaking about the necessity of the new nationalist party appearance, the author focuses on the “ideological and political skills of the membership” as the “first principle of this activity”: “The nationalist idea is the cement that fortify our nationalist ranks” (p.106).

V.Ivanyshyn’s “theory of bird” has the separate important place in D.Yarosh”s theory of the liberation struggle structure. It has three main components: 1) the revived National Order (later called the Ukrainian nationalist Union) as a backbone element (head and body) of the movement, 2) Nationalist Party (Ukrainian political organization “Trident”) as the political wing and 3) Ukrainian organization “Trident” named after S.Bandera as public youth wing (p.48, 103, 111). That’s why the ideologist admitted the existence within the Order of “various subsidiary structures: ideological, political, youth, professional, force (power), etc.,” but which are subordinated to “Provid” (Ukrainian organization) and are oriented to the activity “according to the Order’s  concept of national liberation struggle” (p.47). And in 2012, the sequence of the nationalist structures creation changes (in comparison with 2009): at first the development of the “qualitatively new political organization”, then the consolidation of the broad nationalist ranks around the national ideas, and  only then – the “Revival of the National Order” (p.109).

Noting the great loss of the Order’s attributes by the newest OUN (b) and OUN (m), D.Yarosh emphasizes the necessity of the Order’s structure revival as “Order of Ukrainian nation” (according to V.Ivanyshyn): “… to create universal national Order from the best representatives of the current generation of Ukrainian people”(p.40-42, 44). This order is considered as deeply ideological “revolutionary” and “political-military” structure of Ukrainian Nationalists (p.46).

D.Yarosh also interprets the problem of the revolutionary struggle methods. He stresses that every nationalist organization “should be ready to act under any circumstances”, especially if the power in Ukraine is concentrated “in the hands” of anti-state, pro-Russian forces – the Party of Regions, Communist Party and others. (p.49). So, in 2009 the ideologist stresses: “The national revolution can have different ways. Nationalists do not reject also peaceful ways of achieving the goal. We must make all efforts to get peaceful Revolution! But if we have no choice to do it, then we must liberate our land from foreign invaders with the help of the arms. The enslaved Nations has all rights to all forms and methods of the struggle against the oppressors” (p.53-54).

D.Yarosh also gave rather detailed “peaceful scenario” of the revolutionary struggle because he, like V.Ivanyshyn, defends proper state position in the struggle against the internal occupation regime: ” … we all understand that the very first drop of blood can incur to Ukraine a lot of  geopolitical enemies as imperial Moscow and the “democratic” West. There are many “Peacemakers””(p.82). Analyzing the “terrorist” power provocations in 2011 (in Zaporizhia and Vasylkiv) the ideologist warns against the irresponsible military action as “the greatest idiocy” that plays in favor of criminal power and also he offers as an alternative the mass street protests (which partly took place during the Winter Maidan): “The only force that can overcome the internal occupation regime is the hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians on the streets of the cities, united by Ukrainian national idea and by the revolutionary organization Provid” (p.107). However, to promote the nationalistic concept, we must be ready not only to “street politics”, but also to “parliamentary politics” – active electoral activities (through political party). And, as D.Yarosh notes, “the daily revolutionary political activity” but “not elections” should be the main aim of that politics (p.107).

The above-mentioned ideology does not drain our subject, but encourages us to take more careful look at post-maidan Ukraine. It should be noted that after Winter Maidan and after the beginning of the Russian-Ukrainian war, the circumstances of Ukrainian public life have changed. So there appeared occupied territories (Crimea and a part of Donbass) and there is the constant threat of Russian attack, and there is continues constant political squabble, accompanied by the loud corruption scandals, there appeared new political and social forces (e.g. “Right Sector”), but they do not hold power in present, there appeared revived public activity and different volunteer movements, there increased total distrust of people to power, the process of Ukrainian denationalization is still enduring, there decreased the political and economic impact of Russia, but increased the Western pressure (influence), the government now promulgates the “European integration” as the national idea and others. All this requires deeper understanding and correction of the state processes. That’s why political theorists and practitioners should consider the following questions: whether is it worth rejecting all nationalist ideological work? or whether has the system of power in Ukraine after Yanukovych escape changed? what should political and social organizations make for the systemic change in the country? how much is the society ready to such political system  changes?  what should be done for the improvement (strengthening) of the country’s defense, during the internal social struggles? or has the national idea become the leading for most modern Ukrainians? Has Ukraine any effective revolutionary system (idea-organization-action), any revolutionary movement? and after all, does the National Order  exist in Ukraine?

Turning to the theory of the revolutionary process in works of S.Bandera, V.Ivanyshyn and D.Yarosh it is worth noting the following. In our opinion, taking into account the positions of all three ideologists will make the interpretation of national revolution more objective. Taking this into account, professional political analysts can offer the effective, systematic, qualitative changes for Ukraine related to the acquisition of the national statehood. Otherwise Ukrainians can expect something much worse than primitive political analysis and forecasts. This can be either pseudo revolutionary chaos – the permanent revolutionary process (as in Portugal in 1910-1926) or long and terrible night of the neocolonial statelessness, which could at any moment end by the collapse and the colonial non-existence.



[1] Бандера С. Перспективи української революції: Репринтне вид. – Дрогобич: ВФ “Відродження”, 1998. – 656 с. Надалі том і сторінку з цього видання вказуємо в тексті в дужках.


[2] Іванишин В. Українська ідея: вибрані твори / За ред. Петра Іванишина. – Дрогобич: Посвіт, 2014. – 928 с. Наділі сторінку з цього видання вказуємо в тексті в дужках.


[3] Ярош Д. Нація і революція. – Львів: ЛА «Піраміда», 2015. – 188 с. Надалі сторінку із цього видання вказуємо в тексті в дужках.


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Рубрики: Іншими мовами | Філософія національної ідеї