Recall that in the spring and summer of 1943, on the territory of Volyn, Ukrainian nationalists from the Ukrainian Insurgent Army organized the mass extermination of ethnic Polish civilians. Before 1939, Volyn was part of Poland, and after the start of World War II, it was under the control of Nazi Germany. At the same time, Ukrainian nationalists were active in the territory of Volyn. Bandera considered Volyn as the territory of Ukraine and, accordingly, sought to clean it from the Polish population. In the spring of 1943, the leadership of the Volyn formations of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (Bandera) decided to clear the territory of Volhynia from the Polish population. Formally, the Poles were accused of having served in the German administration and were in charge of protecting forests and state estates. Later, the UPA attacks spread to the ordinary civilian population, including those who lived in Volyn from time immemorial. 11 July 1943, in one day, 150 Polish villages were attacked. In addition to the UPA-OUN (b) militants, many representatives of the local Ukrainian population also participated in the ethnic cleansing of the Polish population. As a result of the actions of UPA-OUN (b), according to modern researchers' estimates, no less than 36, 7 thousand Poles perished in Volyn. Note that these are only those people who have managed to establish the names and places of death. In addition, the facts of the murder of almost 20 000 Poles, whose circumstances of death were not established, were revealed. In any case, the researchers' estimates are roughly the same - from 30 to 50-60 thousands of Poles have become victims of the Volyn massacre. In turn, the Volyn Massacre became a pretext for a response from the Polish Army Craiova, which at the end of the summer of 1943 began ethnic cleansing of the Ukrainian population. However, the number of Ukrainians killed by the Home Army was significantly less - 2-3 thousands of people, while these figures are given by Ukrainian, not Polish historians. Much more numerous were the casualties among the Ukrainian population, which constituted up to 30% of the inhabitants of the south-eastern regions of Poland. Here, at the hands of the Home Army soldiers, 15-20 thousands of Ukrainians died.
Up to 1990's Volyn massacre was not paid much attention either in Polish or in Ukrainian sources. It is possible that this was quite a reasonable step. The Soviet government and the Polish socialist leadership under its influence sought to avoid a permanent return to the topic of massacres that could affect interethnic relations in the region. Actively exaggerate the theme of the Volyn Massacre began in the middle of the 1990-ies. In 2003, the presidents of Ukraine and Poland signed a “Joint Statement“ On reconciliation on the 60 anniversary of the tragic events in Volyn ”.” Both sides expressed deep regret over the tragedy. However, in 2009, the Polish Sejm adopted a resolution that the OUN and the UPA carried out an anti-Polish campaign in the territory of Volyn, which had the character of ethnic cleansing and possessed signs of the genocide of the Polish population. Thus, the Polish side stressed that the point on the issue of the Volyn massacre has not yet been set. 15 July 2013, on the 70 anniversary of the Volyn Massacre, the Polish Sejm again adopted a special resolution, which again characterized the tragic events in Volyn as an ethnic cleansing with signs of genocide. The number of those killed in 1942-1943 was also announced. in Volyn and in Galicia the Poles - about 100 thousand people. At the same time, the resolution 2013 contained a reference to those Ukrainians who took part in the defense of the Polish population and even gave their lives, hiding Polish families. This was a step towards Ukraine, since in Poland they understood perfectly - for Kiev история Volyn Massacre is also a matter of principle. In contrast to the 2009 resolution, some Polish opposition parties opposed the 2013 resolution, which insisted that the resolution include a tougher wording - that not ethnic cleansing with signs of genocide but real genocide of the Poles was carried out in Volyn. However, the Polish leadership did not want to include in the resolution wording describing the tragedy of Volyn as genocide - in this case relations with Ukraine could deteriorate significantly, and Poland, as the main conductor of American influence in Eastern Europe, was not politically advantageous . Nevertheless, on July 7, the Polish Senate passed a resolution “On the issue of perpetuating the memory of the victims of the genocide committed by Ukrainian nationalists against citizens of the 2nd Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 2016 — 1939”. Attention was also drawn to the fact that the victims of UPA militants - OUN (b), in addition to the Polish population of Volyn, were people of other nationalities - Jews, Czechs, Armenians, as well as Ukrainians who helped Polish families. In the resolution, the Polish senators called on the Polish Sejm to recognize July 1945 as the National Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Genocide committed by Ukrainian nationalists against the Poles.
It is noteworthy that the Volyn Massacre was declared a genocide right now - when Ukraine actively asks for the European Union, and Poland is one of Kiev’s main partners in Russophobic politics. Nevertheless, Ivanna Klimpush-Tsintsadze, Vice-Premier of Ukraine for European Integration 15, June 2016, stressed that Kiev could officially apologize to Poland for the Volyn massacre if Warsaw proves that the commander of the UPA, Roman Shukhevych, “did something bad”. This statement is very strange in itself, especially considering that the mass extermination of Poles during the Volyn Massacre is a historically proven fact, and Roman Shukhevych, as the leader of the UPA, is unconditionally responsible for all the actions of the formations subordinate to him.
And now - a new twist. Polish Defense Minister Anthony Macherevich said that the real culprit for the Volyn massacre was ... Russia. According to Macherevic, the genocide did indeed take place, but behind the back of the Ukrainian nationalists there were allegedly Russians who were advantageous to poison the two peoples. The absurdity of this statement is so obvious that it does not even withstand any criticism. To begin at least with the fact that the state called "Russia" in 1943 did not exist. There was the Soviet Union. At that time, the highest leaders of the Soviet Union and its closest ally and assistant for state security were Josef Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili and Lavrenty Pavlovich Beria. The USSR also included the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, the de facto heir of which, in 1991-2014. remained within the boundaries of the Ukrainian SSR, and became modern Ukraine. Obviously, the Polish defense minister is trying to shift the blame for the genocide of the Poles in Volyn to Russia consciously - after all, the differences over the assessment of those tragic events have a rather disastrous effect on the relations between Warsaw and Kiev. In Ukraine, the main support for the current pro-Western regime is nationalist organizations, for which Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevych are idealized historical heroes. In Poland, in turn, still can not forget the Volyn massacre - because many people have lost their relatives in it.
In fact, Macherevich actually supported the version that a number of Ukrainian politicians and historians adhere to. But Ukrainian nationalists can be understood - they want with all their power to remove the charges of organizing the Volyn Massacre from their national hero Shukhevych, because there will be different questions why one of the symbols of modern Ukraine is the figure of the bloody executioner of the Polish people and how this can be related to the processes of the notorious “European integration "? Nor can the Ukrainian nationalists refuse to mention Shukhevych as a national hero — in modern Ukraine there are not many historical figures who would satisfy the Russophobic views of representatives of the Kiev regime. If you remove Shukhevych, Bandera - who will be the pillar of identity based on Russophobia?
Anthony Macherevich agreed that he saw the main cause of the Volyn Massacre in the offensive of the Red Army in September 1939 of the year. According to Macherevich, it was then that the entry of Soviet troops on the territory of Poland led to such dire consequences as the Volyn Massacre. Well, Macherevich is a worthy heir to the policemen and collaborators of all stripes. Not surprisingly, for him it was the Soviet Union and Russia, as his heir, began to personify the mythical "global evil", for the sake of which it is possible to justify the crimes of the UPA, and even the Nazis. However, Macacherevich’s views on the issue of the Volynsk Massacre fit perfectly into the general worldview of the Polish Minister of Defense. Anthony Macherevich is already 68 for years - “the boy is not so young”, which does not prevent him from making such statements. Once, in the middle of the 1970s, Macacherevich participated in the dissident movement in the Polish People’s Republic. Given that he lived to great retirement age and looks like a very happy and healthy person, the horrors of the “totalitarian regime and occupation” in socialist Poland were greatly exaggerated. Otherwise, Macjerevich would not live to the present days. However, after the collapse of the socialist regime in Poland, Macherevich began to occupy prominent positions - he represented the country in the European Parliament as a “real democrat” back in 1991-1992. headed the Ministry of the Interior of Poland, and in 2006-2007. - military counterintelligence of the country.
In 2015, Macieczewicz was made the Minister of Defense of Poland. Against the backdrop of the ongoing "saber-rattling weapons"And the growing Russophobia, it was a very suitable candidate. Macherevich is a pathological Russophobe who sees in everything “the hand of Moscow” and “the machinations of the Russians” He accused Russia of involvement in the plane crash near Smolensk, during which the President of Poland and a number of high-ranking military men died. Another excellent touch to the portrait of Machowiewicz is his doubts about the falsity of the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion”. Macherevich calls Poland just as a “front-line state,” and demands that as many NATO troops be placed on its territory. In addition, Macherevich believes that Poland needs to double the number of its own armed forces, respectively - and the country's military spending. For some reason, Makchevich does not say that in the event of hostilities, in this case, precisely in Poland powerful blows will be inflicted. However, it is already clear that for him hatred of Russia has long become the meaning of life, compared to which the lives of simple Poles - old people, children, women - mean nothing. The social and economic situation of Poland is also not important for him, which is not so good, and in the conditions of a multiple increase in military spending will become even less satisfactory.
The Russian side has already commented on the words of the Polish Minister of Defense. One of the first responded was the official representative of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova. On her page on the social networking site Facebook, Zakharova stressed that, first, we need to clarify whether Minister Makierevich voiced her own positions or the official point of view of Warsaw on the causes of the Volyn Massacre. Secondly, Maria Zakharova asked, “Are there historical events or natural phenomena that Russia is not to blame?”. Zakharova also expressed concern that the encouragement of such statements by officials from the Polish leadership would ultimately lead to the escalation of everyday Russophobia into inciting national hatred. Konstantin Kosachev, Chairman of the International Affairs Committee of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation, put it more clearly - he called the accusations of Russia for organizing the Volyn Massacre as a betrayal.
I would like to add that the words of Machowiewicz are a betrayal not only of the USSR, which liberated Eastern Europe from the horrors of Nazism, but also a betrayal of the Polish people. Seeking out the false, mythical perpetrators of the Volyn Massacre, the Polish leaders, thus, leave its real organizers and their historical heirs, the modern Ukrainian nationalists, unpunished. In addition, they openly spit in the face of the Poles, who have lost their loved ones, trample on the memory of the numerous sons of Poland who fought in the ranks of the Red Army against German Nazism. The history of relations between the Polish and Russian peoples is very long and very complicated, but there are still more good moments in it. Many prominent figures of the Russian state were of Polish origin, among Russian Poles there are many military leaders and scholars, artists and culture figures, just good and decent people, patriots of their country. The incitement of national discord between the two nations will not bring anything good, first of all, to Poland itself.