Last week, a brawl between supporters of a federalized Ukraine (known in the Western media as "pro-Russian separatists" and supporters of the neo-nazi dominated Brown revolution (known in the Western media as "pro-government demonstrators") escalated into a massacre. A crowd of anti-Maidan demonstrators was chased into the Trade Unions building.
The building was then torched by the Brown revolutionaries who prevented the trapped people inside from escaping. At least 46 people died from smoke inhalation, burns, and jumping down to the pavement. Activists who managed to escape alive were beaten by the Brown revolutionaries and medical teams were prevented from performing first aid. A physician from the city's ambulance service was pushed away by the pro-Maidan militants when he tried to come to the aid of their injured opponents. According to Dr. Igor Rozovsky, one of the Brown revolutionaries told him that the same fate awaits him and other Odessa Jews. The physician added that he personally saw a young man succumb to his injuries because the medics were physically prevented from taking him to the hospital.
Sources from the Odessa police and the medical examiner's office told the Odessa news website Timer that the real numbers of dead pro-federalization activists are much higher: from 72 to 116 people. Among the dead are local parliamentarian Vyacheslav Markin and Russian poet Vadim Negaturov. The pro-Kiev militants finished off Markin as he was lying on the sidewalk after jumping out of the burning building.
The reaction of the State Department's beloved pro-Maidan politicians to the horrific events in Odessa is telling, to say the least. Lesya Orobets, formerly the member of the "moderate" Fatherland party of current putschist PM Arseniy "Yats" Yatsenyuk and Yulia "Lady Yu" Tymoshenko, described the murdered anti-Maidan activists as "hordes of Colorado beetles" and characterized the murderous arson as "a more than adequate answer [to aggression]". Tymoshenko, who earlier called for the wholesale killing of Russians and a nuclear attack on Russia breezily dismissed the fiery massacre as "a defense of administrative buildings". And these are the "moderate", female pro-Maidan politicians! One shudders to think what the likes of Tyahnybok and Yarosh think about the Odessa inferno.
In Eastern Europe, the bloody events of history tend to repeat themselves. Over sixty years ago, another group of Ukrainian nationalists perpetrated a fiery massacre. On March 22, 1943, members of the 118th Schutzmannschaft battalion, made up of Galician collaborators, massacred 149 Belarussian villagers in the village of Khatyn. The hapless victims were barricaded in a shed, which was later set on fire. Only a couple of Khatyn's inhabitants managed to survive.
Their murderers were much luckier. Konstanty Smowski, who was the Ukrainian assistant to the German commander of the battalion peacefully ended his days in Minneapolis and Khatyn killer Vladimir Katriuk still lives in provincial Quebec, tending to his beehives. Many of their blood-drenched comrades returned to independent Ukraine and march down the welcoming streets of Kiev and Lvov, flaunting their uniforms and bragging about their wartime activities. After all, they are the ideological forebears and heroes of the Maidan movement.
Eugene Girin is a New York-based attorney and commentator.