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Ukraine cracks down on 'traitors' helping Russian troops

59 Comments
By MSTYSLAV CHERNOV and YURAS KARMANAU

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“Yes, I supported (the Russian invasion of Ukraine) a lot. I’m sorry. … I have already changed my mind," said Viktor, his trembling voice showing clear signs of duress in the presence of the Ukrainian security officers.

...

Although the Zelenskyy government has broad support, even among many Russian speakers, not all Ukrainians oppose the invasion. 

How do we know such support is nothing but the product of duress?

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

An eight-year conflict there between Moscow-backed separatists and Ukrainian government forces had killed over 14,000 people even before this year’s invasion.

As of Monday, the UN estimates that the civilian death toll from the current conflict as 2,042.

But 14,000 people died even before as the Azov Battalion has been relentlessly shelling the civilian population in Donetsk and Luhansk.

This war started 8 years ago when rioters stormed the parliament with molotovs, declared themselves as somehow legitimate representatives of the voters who never voted for them and immediately declared it illegal to use Russian.

The war will see its end when Ukraine is split along ethnic lines, with each side getting self determination.

2 ( +16 / -14 )

Bronco - you certainly have an interesting take on the events on 2014. Do you have anything to back up your claim that anyone declared it “illegal to use Russian”. I would be happy to take a look at that.

-6 ( +12 / -18 )

In the besieged port city of Mariupol, officials accused collaborators of helping the Russians cut off electricity, running water, gas and communications in much of the city.

“Now I understand perfectly why the Russians were carrying out such precise, coordinated strikes on objects of critical infrastructure, knew about all locations and even times when Ukrainian buses evacuating refugees were supposed to depart,” said Mayor Vadym Boychenko.

The Ukrainians should definitely be arresting anyone helping the Russians invade their country... especially those that are helping them identify bombing targets (most of them apparently being civilian areas).

If they don't like living in Ukraine... they should just pack up their bags... head over to Russian lines and surrender (and hope that the Russian troops don't shoot them first).

May they enjoy their future living in Russia...

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

Wobot, polling during wartime is going to be difficult for sure. I will take a look and see what I can find. What kind of sources would you be satisfied with? Also, what would polling look like in Japan if China invaded?

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Western media still hasn’t reported on the massacre of Ukrainian Russian speakers in Bucha after the Russian military left. Ukraine Special Forces entered the city quickly and according to witnesses, liquidated collaborators.

this must of been extremely scary situation for ordinary citizens. While the Russians were there, wearing a white armband would guarantee your safety, but once they suddenly left, you would be tortured and executed by Ukrainian forces. As most civilians were living in bunkers or hiding, with little or no information about what was happening, even if they support Zelenski, when sneaking out to look for food and water, thinking a white armband would make them safe, they overnight became a target. Such is war.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

86-year-old Volodymir Radnenko didn’t seem surprised when Ukrainian security arrived to search his flat Saturday after detaining his son

it's beginning to sound like the Gestapo

7 ( +16 / -9 )

The group of 9 civilians found bound and shot in the head in Buca two weeks ago were bound with the same material used to make the white arm bands used to show either "non combatant" or Russian supporter. These people were killed by Ukrainian national guard after the Russians pulled out. Ukrainian propaganda of course, says they were killed by the Russians. The UK as head of the UNSC at the time vetoed Russia's call for an independent inquiry.

4 ( +16 / -12 )

Ukraine do not have the luxury of sitting in trenches,their fuel supply is dwindling,they can fuel their truck and tanks and even their trains,and will be cut off from supplies, Google Ukraine Fuel Shortage

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

The war will see its end when Ukraine is split along ethnic lines, with each side getting self determination.

You know there are more Ukrainians in Russia than Russians in Ukraine, right? You understand this, right?

When are you planning to split Russia for ‘self determination’?

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

this is going bad quickly.

how long until all the political rivals and anyone who criticizes Zelensky in any way is arrested like this?

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

More inconvenient facts proving the Ukranian government are no saints either.

3 ( +13 / -10 )

Those giving aid and comfort to the enemy should find themselves lucky that Ukraine does not have the death penalty.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

this is going bad quickly. 

how long until all the political rivals and anyone who criticizes Zelensky in any way is arrested like this?

You mean, like in Russia? No, it won’t get that bad.

-3 ( +9 / -12 )

You mean, like in Russia? No, it won’t get that bad.

No I mean like in Ukraine, as this article tells us and as I clearly wrote.

”traitors” being arrested.

are they really? Or just people on the wrong side of politics and government criticisms?

0 ( +12 / -12 )

You know there are more Ukrainians in Russia than Russians in Ukraine, right? You understand this, right?

That’s super disingenuous.

like stating there are no Japanese in USA. cause they are mostly all “American” by residence status or citizenship.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

Blacklabel - When their country is being invaded, of course the security forces are going to want to question suspected collaborators with the enemy. This is not unique to Ukraine. If the US ends up in a hot war with Russia, we are going to do the same.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

This is too ripe for abuse to start gathering up your own people like the Nazis did and like the US did to Japanese- Americans.

but anything Ukraine does or will do, totally supported immediately without thought or question.

“ it won’t get that bad.”- how would you know that? What is that bad? Only 90% arrested will be politics or government criticizing people, so that ok?

1 ( +12 / -11 )

Blacklabel - would you suggest that Ukraine just allow the collaborators to continue giving aid and comfort to the enemy without consequence? That would be like fighting with one arm tied behind their back.

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

authorities have banned 11 pro-Russian political parties, including the largest one that had 25 seats in the 450-member parliament 

Ukraine is not a democracy if they ban parliamentarians who won their seats fair and square under internationally observed elections.

They're literally saying that votes from pro Russia citizens are not allowed to count.

Every citizen deserves a vote, regardless of whether they speak Russian or Ukrainian.

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

Who says they are collaborators, that is the point.

sure do have this super amount of trust in Ukraine to always do the right thing? Why is that?

seems other guy is ok with Ukraine equivalent of FBI just rounding everyone up- they are “only” kept for 30 days, so no big deal.

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

Bronco - In case you didn’t hear, Ukraine is under martial law because they are currently being invaded by Russia. Of course they are going to ban political parties whose platform is pro-Russia. Democracy is not intended to be a suicide pact. Once the invaders go home and martial law is lifted, then perhaps they can let the pro-Russian parties back.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Blacklabel - their country, their legal system, right?

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

And might Ukraine make mistakes? Sure, of course, we all do. We are all human, but right now, they are being invaded by Russia, so yeah, I am going to give them the benefit of the doubt. I would do the same for any country being invaded by Russia, democracy or not.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

This happens in all wars.

The world has been diverse for millennia. Despite the best efforts of Aryan/Han/Yamato etc., myths, people are different. Individuals aren't to blame for the inherited identities and loyalties which reflect this.

Between 1971 and 1975 the British Army arrested and interned without trial two thousand of its own citizens (1 in 800 of the region's population) in a part of the UK.

Whether labelled "special military operations" or "the Troubles," war is hell.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

this is going bad quickly.

This is a very interesting comment for someone who doesn't care about Ukrainians to make.

Who says they are collaborators, that is the point.

Oh, I don't know, the government in Ukraine? The people on the ground. It's funny how you don't care enough about Ukrainians to help them defend themselves, but you'll criticize the government for human rights abuses.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Allegations of collaborating with the enemy carry strong historic resonance in Ukraine. During World War II, some in the region welcomed and even cooperated with invading forces from Nazi Germany after years of Stalinist repression that included the “Holodomor” – a man-made famine believed to have killed more than 3 million Ukrainians. For years afterward, Soviet authorities cited the cooperation of some Ukrainian nationalists with the Nazis as a reason to demonize today’s democratically elected leaders of Ukraine.

Comedy gold. The "Holodomor" is a myth created by Nazi sympathizers such as William Randolph Hearst ( the newspaper magnate fictionalized in the film Citizen Kane) to promote anti-Russian and pro-Nazi propaganda in the US and the English-speaking world in the 1930s. The massive famine killed millions right across southern Russia in the early 1930s, not only in Ukraine.

During World War II, some in the region welcomed and even cooperated with invading forces from Nazi Germany

Modern scholars estimate the number of Ukrainian Jews killed by the Nazis and their collaborators in Ukraine at between 1.2 and 1.6 million. "Cooperation" indeed.

If anyone is interested I would recommend a lengthy 2011 essay by the Swedish-American historian Per Anders Rudling titled "The OUN, the UPA and the Holocaust: A Study in the Manufacturing of Historical Myths". It can be downloaded in pdf form from academic websites.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Of course they are going to ban political parties whose platform is pro-Russia.

How is this civil war supposed to end then?

The separatists won't stop fighting unless they feel that their voices are heard and also unless they're sure they won't face arbitrary arrest and "disappear" when Ukrainian Secret Police come knocking on the door.

Repression and brutality just make civil wars worse.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Bronco, Ukraine judicial system is just as corrupt as Russian,that rank #1, followed by Ukraine in Europe

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Bronco - this is not a civil war. This is a war of Russian interference and aggression. Let’s not get it twisted.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

If you're suspected of being in collaborator, in Ukraine you get arrested and held for 30 days....

In Russia, you get assaulted by Putin's thugs, dropped off a bridge or 8-story building, or get injected with Novichuk...

And the far-right posters here still revel in their Putin-worship...

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

You know there are more Ukrainians in Russia than Russians in Ukraine, right? You understand this, right?

That’s super disingenuous.

like stating there are no Japanese in USA. cause they are mostly all “American” by residence status or citizenship.

No it isn’t because that is not what I said AT ALL. You really have a habit of grabbing the wrong end of the stick.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Bronco - this is not a civil war.

Then why does the article mention "separatist regions" and why have 11 political parties been banned?

Why does the Ukrainian Secret Police need to compile a "registry of collaborators"

Read the article:

Some businessmen, civic and state officials and members of the military are among those who have gone over to the Russian side

It clearly and openly states that there are Ukrainians joining the Russian side.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Then why does the article mention "separatist regions" and why have 11 political parties been banned?

Because Russia fueled separatist movements in eastern Ukraine.

It clearly and openly states that there are Ukrainians joining the Russian side.

Then it clearly isn't a civil war then. That was easy.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Blacklabel - their country, their legal system, right?

Not when we are arming them and giving them tens of billions of dollars, no.

we become morally responsible for their actions when we arm and financially support people we don’t really know.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

No it isn’t because that is not what I said AT ALL. 

this below wasn’t you when I clearly spoke about Ukraine not Russia? Pot, kettle.

You mean, like in Russia? No, it won’t get that bad.

You get really twisty with other peoples words when feigning ignorance what a clear statement “means”.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Blacklabel - says who? If there are civil rights violations being committed by the Ukrainians, then we will have plenty of time to sort it out and hold folks accountable after the invaders are forced out. No offense, but if the Ukrainians listened to your advice over the last couple of months, they would have lost the war already.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

They have already “lost the war”. The moment it started.

weapons and money from the west have only enabled it to continue far longer than it should have.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

They have already “lost the war”. The moment it started.

Lmao This isn't true.

weapons and money from the west have only enabled it to continue far longer than it should have.

Right, the only logical thing to do is give up, and give Russia everything it wants. Easy for you to say when it isn't your country.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

That’s one way to look at it. Another way to look at it is that the Russians lost the war the moment they invaded. The Russians will never crush the Ukrainian spirit even if they gain some territory or other concessions.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Don’t get invaded in the first place is the goal. Once that happens and people die, you have lost.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Don’t get invaded in the first place is the goal.

And how you suppose they do that? Just give up their country to Russia?

Once that happens and people die, you have lost.

Cowardly and untrue. Just because there is a war doesn't mean a country has lost.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Good point, Takeda. BL - Would you suggest that your own country surrender even in the face of a numerically superior enemy? I hope not.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

U,they may break your spirit,but they can break your bank account,the US should not be in the business of enabling Ukraine,by giving them money, without having a say so ,of the strategy of an out come for the US, Ukraine has zero effect on most Americans lives,you do not give somebody a gun , because you have sympathy for them,you talk to them about a strategic solution

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

don’t leave the Fate of your country to the severely weakened United States diplomacy. Maybe don’t depend on the United Nations-of which you are not a member- to do your protection.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Was Zelensky incapable of picking up a phone and negotiating with Putin pre-Imvasion? They speak the same language. Speak and act for yourself and your own country to prevent this instead of expecting”the world” to fund and arm you indefinitely?

1 ( +9 / -8 )

don’t leave the Fate of your country to the severely weakened United States diplomacy.

Lol US diplomacy isn't severely weakened. And Putin invading Ukraine isn't Biden's fault.

Maybe don’t depend on the United Nations-of which you are not a member- to do your protection.

And do what? Give up territory? Do be specific, because despite claims to the contrary, nearly even position taken by the right/Trump supporters is advantageous to Russia, and disadvantageous to Ukraine.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Sorry, BL, I misunderstood. You mean more like a moral victory or loss. I’m talking more about like victory where the Russians get kicked out of Ukraine.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Was Zelensky incapable of picking up a phone and negotiating with Putin pre-Imvasion? 

You mean during the drills in Belarus, which Russia swore up and down wasn't preparation for an invasion? I'm curious to know how Ukraine can negotiate with Russia, considering Putin doesn't even respect the autonomy of the Ukrainian people. It seems very much like the right thinks might makes right.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Do be specific, 

ive been very specific. You are just doing reply guy over and over to my comments.

What would you recommend to have done to prevent this invasion?

do be specific.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

nearly even position taken by the right/Trump supporters is advantageous to Russia, and disadvantageous to Ukraine.

Maybe cause……Russia is in the advantageous position?

you can’t see it cause of your insistence to look at it only from a left/right and Biden/trump viewpoint.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

What would you recommend to have done to prevent this invasion?

I don't think there's anything they could have done to prevent the invasion, short of just giving up and reintegrating into Russia.

Putin, like American rightists, thinks might makes right, and so like has Russia has the military power to do so, they can force their will on their weaker neighbors. Pathetic bullies, really.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I'm curious to know how Ukraine can negotiate with Russia

By picking up a telephone or doing a zoom call? Zelensky knows how to speak to the leaders and legislatures of every county and even how to address the Grammys.

but can’t get ahold of Putin?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Maybe cause……Russia is in the advantageous position?

Sure, if the world just let Russia bully it's neighbors, you're absolutely right.

Fortunately for the world, most people kind, and do stand up to bullies. Until every last invader is killed or runs back to Russia, we should continue to arm them.

you can’t see it cause of your insistence to look at it only from a left/right and Biden/trump viewpoint.

This is just projection.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Then it was just meant to be, I guess.

Hope other countries don’t have such a defeatist attitude about negotiating and diplomacy pre invasion.

anyway hope it’s over soon but with all that money flowing in, very unlikely.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

By picking up a telephone or doing a zoom call? Zelensky knows how to speak to the leaders and legislatures of every county and even how to address the Grammys.

Read the whole sentence before commenting:

 I'm curious to know how Ukraine can negotiate with Russia, considering Putin doesn't even respect the autonomy of the Ukrainian people.

Putin made it very clear he doesn't view Ukraine as a separate, independent country. It's impossible to negotiate with someone who doesn't even view your country as being legitimate government.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Ukraine cracks down on freedom of speech.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Raw Beer - yeah, I suppose collaborators don't have the freedom of speech to spot artillery fire for the Russians anymore. I'm ok with that.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

It's good to see an article that dares to take a look at the shadier side of Ukraine. We all have an immense amount of sympathy for Ukraine because it is the victim of an invasion, but it is not right to pretend that everything is sweetness and light there. Ukraine has banned opposition political parties and is committing war crimes too: the most obvious example being the killing or parading and interrogation of POWs and then uploading the videos to the internet.

I know I'll get lots of down votes for saying this, but we can't say the Geneva Convention only applies to the invading side.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

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