Pavlo Skoropadsky. Russia without Bolsheviks
Perhaps there is no leader in the history of Ukraine who is more slandered and humiliated than the hetman Pavlo Skoropadsky. This is probably a unique case - almost all contemporaries hated Paul Hetman.
For the socialists, he was a royal general and "pan". For supporters of the Russian Empire - a traitor and a separatist. For the Bolsheviks, by a general who stopped their advance on Kiev in November 1917, and the class enemy. And what is most tragic - for the Ukrainian patriots, he was forever proclaimed a German puppet and White Guard sycophant. Although a detailed study of the hetmanat period leads to very different conclusions.
Hetman was reproached that he surrounded himself exclusively with supporters of "one-indivisible" Russia. It is not true. Such well-known Ukrainian patriots as Vyacheslav Lipinsky, Sergey Shelukhin, Dmitry Doroshenko, Mikhail Chubinsky (the son of the author of the anthem “Ukraine has not died yet), the future ideologist of Ukrainian nationalism Dmitry Dontsov and many others worked in the hetman’s administration. Nikolai Mikhnovsky was invited to become a personal adviser to the hetman, and the ideologue of the Ukrainian independent supporters did not agree to a less ministerial position. Naturally, many former Tsarist officials worked in the apparatus of the Ukrainian state. Just as in the times of the Directory. Generals Galkin, Greeks, Sinclair and Yunakov were not just former Tsarist generals - they did not speak Ukrainian either. It did not hinder them from occupying leadership positions in the UNI Army of DPR.
Hetman was blamed for the fact that with him the local authorities were occupied by people who were openly hostile to Ukraine. It really was. The Kyiv provincial elder Chartorizhsky and the provincial elder of the Kharkiv region of Zalessky, who called all Ukrainians Mazeopians, and the Ukrainian language “an unnecessary innovation,” were especially odious. True, these characters were removed from their posts not by the UNR Directorate, but by the Hetman administration. Actually - for Ukrainophobia. The same applies to the punitive detachments created by the landlords to terrorize the peasants with the assistance of the German command. These detachments were eliminated not by the rebels of the atamans Angel and Zeleny, but by the guarding hundreds of the State Warta by order of the Hetman Interior Minister Igor Kistyakovsky.
It is also not true that the hetmanate period was a continuous robbery of Ukraine by German troops. “Life in Yekaterinoslav was keyed ... After the Soviet hunger strike, the unheard-of low prices for food and a huge number of them on the markets hit,” recalled Professor G. Igrenev. The hetman's period was actually a period of revival of Ukrainian industry after the devastating Bolshevik invasion. Only coal production in relation to the times of the Central Rada grew by a factor of 1,5 (from 30 to 50 million pounds per month). Ukraine traded sugar, canned meat, vegetable and butter, and the like with Germany and Austria. Having accused Hetman of all deadly sins, the UNR Directorate actually took advantage of economic achievements. “One got the impression of dozens of hands clinging to the hetman's treasures,” recalled the officer of the headquarters of the Zaporizhzhya Corps of the UNR Army, center officer Avramenko, who recalled the first days of the Directory.
However, there is an accusation from which not to wash it off - “Diploma of the Federation of Ukraine with Russia”. With this document, Hetman Skoropadsky, it seems, forever renounced the idea of independence of Ukraine and showed his commitment to the "one-indivisible." But not everything was easy.
Critics of Pavel Skoropadsky usually bypass the fact that the union of Ukraine with Russia in the administration of the hetman was demanded by the Entente. After the defeat of Germany in the First World, the Entente was the master of the situation. Ukraine for her was only the German puppet regime. The countries of the Entente were a number of agreements related to the government of tsarist Russia. In the autumn of 1918, on behalf of the latter, the Volunteer Army of General Anton Denikin, for whom no Ukraine "No, was not and never will be." The Entente countries did not want to support the separatist movements that emerged on the territory of their ally. Therefore, it can already be considered a success of Ukrainian diplomacy that the representatives of the Entente conducted negotiations with the envoys of the hetman in general (they ignored the directory). However, they were ready to recognize Ukraine only as part of Russia. In any other case, Ukraine became an ally of Germany for the Western states, against which it would start a war together with the Volunteer Army. But Ukraine could not resist them - it did not manage to form its own army.
To come to an agreement with the Entente was also demanded by the Bolshevik threat. At the VI Congress of Soviets, Leon Trotsky frankly announced his intention to seize Ukraine at the moment when German troops would leave its territory. To carry out the seizure of the Ukrainian lands, the Bolsheviks prompted an extremely pragmatic factor — Ukraine had the harvest of the 1918 of the year, and red Russia was dying of hunger. Give Ukraine time to deploy its own army could only Entente troops.
But the Entente was also not going to reproduce the Russian empire in its former borders. That is why the hetman demanded not liquidation of Ukraine as a state entity, but only its accession to Russia to one degree or another. In fact, the Entente demanded that Ukraine return to the position of the Hetman Khmelnytsky times, when Ukraine became part of Russia, having its own self-government, army and judicial system. Nobody left the choice to Hetman Skoropadsky.
Federation with Martians
Another fact that persistently bypasses the critics of the hetmanat, is that the hetman announced the letter of the federation with the state, which at that time did not exist. As of November 1918, the only country called “Russia” was the Bolshevik Republic. Naturally, Hetman Skoropadsky was not going to unite with her. In November, 1918, in the territory of the former Russian Empire, there were self-proclaimed states of the Ufa Directory, the Great Don and Kuban People’s Republic. All of them were not Russia. With the same success Hetman Skoropadsky could proclaim the union with Mars or Venus.
The 35-thousandth Volunteer Army of General Denikin did not control any territory at that time and was in the territory of the Don by agreement with the Don Government. That is why in the “Literacy of the Federation” in Ukraine there are words: “She will be the first to come forward in the formation of an All-Russian Federation, whose ultimate goal will be the restoration of a great Russia.”
The man whom the “Diploma of the Federation” managed to annoy insanely was General Anton Denikin. “Never, of course, no Russia - reactionary or democratic, republican or authoritarian will not allow the rejection of Ukraine” - this is how he briefly and succinctly expressed his attitude to the Ukrainian question. As part of the Russian Empire, Ukraine had no autonomy. The command of the Volunteer Army did not see any reason to somehow change this situation in the future.
At the same time, in the “Literacy of the Federation” there was no mention anywhere of the renunciation of power by the Hetman, or of the liquidation of Ukraine as a state. “Getman wrote - under the auspices of Russia on federal principles, and Ukraine retains its sovereignty,” wrote the Ukrainian ambassador in Berlin, Baron Fyodor Steinheil, to former Foreign Minister Dmitry Doroshenko.
Because of the “Charter of the Federation,” the command of the Volunteer Army was in a very interesting position. On the one hand, the volunteers themselves were barefooted and hungry and did not have enough strength to oppose the Bolsheviks. They were waiting for a long and exhausting war with the force that controlled the entire central part of Russia, and then the equally difficult process of raising this country from the ruins. They could not even imagine how the political future of Russia would look like - its fate was to be decided by the Constituent Assembly, delegates to whom it was necessary to choose another in a country where a great number of people were ruled by the Reds.
However, with the proclamation of the “Charter of the Federation,” General Denikin was forced to put up with Ukraine as a reality. Ukraine became legitimate in the eyes of the Entente. Even more, the hetman had already controlled the territory in which there was no civil war, industry worked and its own foreign policy was carried out. Volunteers, all this was yet to be created. Even with Don and Kuban, they had to somehow explain. Under such circumstances, the likelihood that Ukraine would indeed become part of Russia as a subordinate was almost zero.
The foreign policy successes of the Hetman administration nullified the situation inside the country. Dmitry Dontsov’s diary describes Hetman’s repeated complaints that he is forced to build Ukraine “in spite of the Ukrainians”. Almost from the first day of his power, the hetman had to overcome resistance from the Ukrainian society.
Socialists from the Central Rada hetman hated and categorically refused to cooperate with him. “Svetozar Dragomanov came to my chief, vice-minister of internal affairs, Vishnevsky, to coordinate his dimisy (he was an official in one of the ministries of the Central Rada), not wanting to remain with the“ anti-Ukrainian hetman government. ” At this scene, Vishnevsky spoke Ukrainian, and Dragomanov spoke Russian, ”recalled Dmitry Dontsov. Refusing to work in the government, the socialists were active in anti-state activities, not disdaining cooperation even with the Bolsheviks. Vladimir Vinnichenko did not hide the fact that the Red Moscow also allocated money for the overthrow of the hetmanate to the socialists. “Negotiations with Manuilsky are based on the following: to achieve neutrality of the Bolsheviks in our war against the Hetmans. Against Soviet Russia, we had absolutely no hostile intentions, ”admitted Mikita Shapoval, chairman of the Ukrainian National Union. This is after Krut and the Kiev massacre.
Sovereign Warta (the police) and the Special Section of the Hetman's headquarters (political intelligence) were aware of this activity and in every way prevented it. As a result, many socialist activists were arrested by the State Guard. Without batting an eye, the socialists betrayed these facts as repression against conscious Ukrainians.
On the one hand, the Getman was under the pressure of the destructive activities of the socialists, on the other, it demanded a large number of experienced managers. It was to choose from whom, in the country a lot of tsarist officials remained, plus a huge number of businessmen, businessmen and military escaped from Russia embraced by Bolshevism. But all these people were very skeptical about the very fact of the existence of Ukraine. However, the hetman decided to take advantage of their talents while the staff of experienced managers and entrepreneurs would not have grown from among the Ukrainians themselves. Naturally, for this, Pavel Skoropadsky must make concessions in the cultural issue - de facto recognize the equality of the Russian and Ukrainian languages. The issue of school education, for example, was entrusted to local self-government bodies - zemstvos, which means that where the majority of the population (and, accordingly, the majority of zemstvo deputies) were Russian (all major cities), Ukrainization of education almost did not occur. As a result, charges such as “he brought to power of the members of the united ranks” and “build Russia in Ukraine” fell on the hetman.
These accusations were baseless. It was for the Hetman Skoropadsky in Ukraine that two Ukrainian universities appeared (in Kiev and Kamenetz-Podolsky), about 150 Ukrainian grammar schools were opened and the Academy of Sciences was established. Unreasonable accusations of repression selectively against the Ukrainians. Right-wing pro-Russian organizations were persecuted by no less than Ukrainian socialists. 7 July 1918 Derzhavna Warta dispersed a monarchist demonstration in Kiev. The order of the Hetman MVD is also noteworthy: “By the order of visitors, the orchestras in the restaurants play monarchist Russian songs ... while listening to the audience standing up, saluting ... I order: 1. Participants in such demonstrations are to be detained and sent to Russia so that they there with honor could in fact, and not in restaurants, restaurants, show their dedication to political ideas that are dear to them. ”
Getman Skoropadsky tried to communicate with the Ukrainian socialists. October 17 1918, when it became apparent that losing the war to Germany was only a matter of time, a charter was proclaimed in which he expressed his intention to "stand on the basis of the independence of the Ukrainian state." On October 25, five ministers were admitted to the government - representatives of the Ukrainian National Union: Andrei Vyazlov, Alexander Lototsky, Peter Stebnitsky, Nikolai Slavinsky (all from the Socialist-Federalist Party) and Vladimir Leontovich (non-partisan). At the same time, Hetman Skoropadsky went on an unprecedented compromise - the hated ONS ministry-siloviki Igor Kistyakovsky (MVD) and Boris Stelletsky (the chief of staff of the hetman, who was in charge of the Special Section) were sent to resign. Both were extremely talented organizers, and their removal from office naturally affected the quality of information to Hetman.
However, the leaders of the socialists did not want to understand - since September 1918, they have been preparing an uprising against the hetman. The latter served as an initiative of the National Union, although in fact it was exclusively the leaders of the socialists and the command of military units of the Hetman army: Sich Riflemen, the Black Sea Kosh, Zaporozhye Division, the Railroad Corps and Podolsky Corps. “The National Union thinks absolutely nothing about armed struggle,” Nikita Shapoval complained.
However, on behalf of the National Union, the intention was announced to assemble the National Congress on November 17 in order to determine the future system of government in Ukraine. In fact, Vinnichenko and Shapoval prepared the abolition of hetmanship by the Congress. How the hetman considered the option of his personal participation in this Congress. “Or to become at the head of the Ukrainian movement, trying to capture everything in their hands. The implementation was drawn in such a way that I myself declared the Congress, and I changed the composition of the members, adding to it not only left-wing parties, ”Pavel Skoropadsky recalled. However, on November 13, officers of the Special Division of the Hetman headquarters arrested the head of his guard, Colonel Arcas. The counterintelligence agents learned from him that in the insurgents everything was already ready for an uprising and that it had to occur independently of the decision of Congress. On the same day, the socialist leaders and rebel generals formed the Directory and decided to start the uprising. There was no “Certificate of Federation” at that time.
Pavlo Skoropadsky found himself in a hopeless situation. Going with the flow meant giving power to the socialists, i.e. to individuals who once brought the country to the Bolshevik occupation. The getman was convinced that if the socialists came to power, the Bolsheviks would quickly seize Kiev, and he was not mistaken. It turned out that saving Ukraine from the enemy invasion was necessary against the will of the Ukrainian people. It was not the first time for a hetman to build Ukraine "in spite of Ukrainians". Hetman officials decided to go all in and rely on the “Special Corps” - a military unit made up of pro-Russian officers, which in the future should be sent to the front to Denikin (and thus get rid of these odious personnel in Ukraine). However, in order to rely on the pro-Russian forces, it was necessary to announce the restoration of the "one-indivisible." It was then that on November 14, the Letter of the Federation came into being, to which the Hetman was forced by the Entente. “In this federation, Ukraine will have to occupy one of the first places, because the order and legality of the region have left it,” the diploma noted.
However, Hetman grossly mistaken in assessing the balance of power. After the Diploma, even the allied Ukrainian parties turned out to him: the grain-democrats and the socialists were federalists. For the whole country, Pavel Skoropadsky became a traitor. The Hetman officials still hoped that the rebels and the militants would exhaust each other and that the Hetman would be able to be above the fray. Actually, because of this, the hetman did not head the troops to suppress the rebels personally. But these hopes were not justified. Proponents of a single, indivisible, previously very noisy at rallies and on newspaper pages at a crucial moment began to massively avoid mobilizing into officer formations. General Keller, appointed commander of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, turned out to be such an ardent Ukrainophobia that even the hetman serdyuk and the ideological officers of the hetman began to move to the side of the Directory.
The hopes of the Entente were also in vain. The German units that were still stationed in Ukraine, at that time, carried out all the orders of the “Countries of consent”. The arrival of representatives of France in Kiev (who were already in Odessa) would be enough for the Germans to stop all negotiations with the Directory and force the rebels to sit at the negotiating table with the hetman. But representatives of the Entente did not come to Kiev. Getman lost and must renounce power.
But it is not necessary to exaggerate the role of the Hetman in all these events. Within six months, the projects of Ukraine’s joining Russia on federal principles to the command of the White Army were proposed by Chief Ataman Simon Petlyura. But the conditions in which Petliura was then located could not be compared with the Hetman ones. The Entente did not recognize the UPR and refused to speak with representatives of the Directory. Denikin did not have the slightest desire to go to any negotiations with the “separatist Petliura”. The Ukrainian army was doomed to war on three fronts and to further internment. The final plan for the autonomous status of Ukraine as part of the renewed empire was implemented by the Bolsheviks. Ukraine paid for this autonomy with the Holodomor and the charms of the Stalinist Gulag.
"The letter of the Federation of Ukraine with Russia" was even evaluated differently by his contemporaries. The head of the Hetman Ukrainian Telegraph Agency, Dmitri Dontsov, considered her a betrayal: “That the Diploma proclaimed a federation with a non-existent Russia does not justify it. Questions of state independence are not questions of tactics, but principles. ” At the same time, the former chairman of the Council of the Sich Riflemen, Osip Nazaruk, who personally inserted the memo on “Federated literacy” in the Declaration of the Directory, in exile sincerely repented for participating in the insurrection against the hetman. He did not consider the “Letter of the Federation” a betrayal, “because Skoropadsky introduced Moscow to Ukraine, and not Ukraine to Moscow.”
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