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The Secret of Putin's Anti-Semitism, - Petro Oleshchuk

Russia's aggression against Ukraine was carried out under completely far-fetched, invented pretexts that had nothing to do with reality. Petro Oleshchuk, an expert at the United Ukraine think tank, writes about this in his article for The Gaze. The text of the article can be found below.

Russian President Vladimir Putin recently made another statement in which he referred to the "Jewish origin" of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. In particular, the Russian leader said that the West "put an ethnic Jew at the head of modern Ukraine" to "cover up the anti-human nature" of Ukraine. This is a continuation of a series of statements that, on the one hand, mention the "Jewish roots" of the Ukrainian leader, and, on the other hand, emphasize that this is not an "obstacle to Nazism" in Ukraine. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov went especially far in this regard, saying earlier that there are versions of Hitler's "Jewish origins," which caused a major scandal around the world.

It is evident that this topic is very painful and sensitive for the Russian leadership, and the reasons for this may, on the one hand, be in the nature of certain personal grievances against the Russian dictator, but they also have certain deeper roots.

A "Well-Thought-Out Plan" to Annex Ukraine

It's no secret that since the beginning of the war against Ukraine (and it's not just the full-scale invasion in 2022, but also the initial aggression in 2014), Russia has been actively using the theme of "fighting Nazism" in its propaganda. The official goal of the war, which Russia is seeking to achieve, includes the word "denazification." Russian television channels talk daily about "Nazism" in Ukraine, which they are allegedly fighting.

It is clear that all this is no accident. You can't just commit aggression against another state that is a member of the UN and whose independence you yourself have repeatedly confirmed. And the fact that you want to revive an empire from the past cannot be a sufficient reason for aggression. You need something more powerful in terms of emotional impact.

The topic of Nazism was chosen a long time ago, as evidenced by the numerous publications about "Ukrainian Nazism" that were published in Russia long before the aggression against Ukraine began. The choice of this topic was not accidental, as it seemed attractive for many reasons. First, Nazism in the modern world is something as odious and unacceptable as possible. To label your enemy a Nazi means to deprive him of support. Secondly, Nazism is also perceived as something extremely negative in Russia itself. In this context, the aggression against Ukraine can be presented as a continuation of the "Great Patriotic War," the cult of victory in which has been created throughout the years of Putin's rule. Thirdly, through the fight against "absolute evil" (Nazism), one can try to justify the need for "relative evil" (occupation and even destruction of an independent and sovereign state).

The plan was obvious. First, we prove that Nazism has "won" in Ukraine, and then we seek to get the world to recognize that only Russia can contain this Nazism by fully controlling Ukraine. And in this way, we want to secure Ukraine's return to Russia.

"Jewish Landmine" Under the "Perfect Plan"

Russian aggression has been going on for almost 10 years now, but the intensity of this aggression has been constantly changing. The "hot phase" of 2014-2015 was followed by a period of relative calm. All this time, Russia sought to secure control over Ukraine through the implementation of the Minsk Agreements, which would have meant the reversal of the Russian-controlled enclave in Donbas with a "veto" over foreign policy. But nothing came of it, and the Kremlin began preparing for a full-scale military invasion to "solve the problem once and for all."

But time did not stand still, and in 2019, Zelenskyy was elected President of Ukraine. The latter was of Jewish descent, and it was no secret. Thus, in a state that, according to official Russian propaganda, was "Nazi," a Jew became the head of state. And this could not but cause a crisis in the schemes built up over many years.

The overwhelming majority of citizens in the civilized world have a very negative attitude toward "Nazism," but all they know about the Nazis is that they hate Jews the most in the world. The tragedy of the Holocaust is the best proof of this. Accordingly, the scheme that we should fight against Ukraine because "the Nazis are in power in Ukraine" has begun to fall apart.

Russian Propaganda's "Anti-Crisis Communications"

Initially, these contradictions apparently did not bother the Russian leadership too much, as the 2022 plan of aggression against Ukraine envisaged the capture of Kyiv and the entire territory of the state in a matter of days (at worst, weeks). But when the "Kyiv in Three Days" plan failed, the problems with explaining the "special operation to denazify Ukraine" began to become more and more pronounced.

How can you explain to the world that you are fighting the "Nazi government" in Ukraine if this government is headed by a president of Jewish descent? It is probably impossible, but something must be done. Therefore, Russian officials have been trying to prove all this time that Zelensky's "Jewish origin" does not affect the "Nazism of Ukraine," and they do so in the most primitive way possible.

First, Putin says that Zelensky is a "disgrace to the Jewish people," Lavrov says that "Hitler himself was a Jew," and now it has come to the Russian dictator's quotes about the "West" that specifically appointed a Jew as Ukrainian president to hide "Ukrainian Nazism."

Each of these explanations looks very strange, provoking international scandals and accusations of anti-Semitism against the Kremlin leadership. This creates a paradoxical situation: those who wanted to use the "fight against Nazism" as a justification for their own aggression are themselves becoming the main accused of Nazism among the leaders of the modern world.


Ultimately, this whole story proves one thing: Russia's aggression against Ukraine was carried out under completely contrived, invented pretexts that had nothing to do with reality. And no matter what Putin and his propagandists try to come up with, it only further demonstrates the absurdity of their theses and concepts. They are not fighting any "Nazism," they are simply waging an ordinary aggressive war of conquest against a neighboring state.

Source: "The Gaze"

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