Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 29, 2021

German Ambassador Wants More Nazis? - 112 Ukraine Makes A Curious Little Translation Mistake

The privately owned media organization 112 Ukraine, recently banned by the government as 'pro-Russian', reports of a Nazi march in Kiev.

March dedicated to Waffen-SS Division Galicia held in Kyiv

On April 28, about 250 people marched in black embroidered shirts (vyshyvankas) on the occasion of the 78th anniversary of Waffen-SS Division "Galicia" and came on the Independence Square in Kyiv. This was reported by Ukrainian News agency.

The march began near the Arsenalna metro station and ended near Independence Square.

The marching participants carried the emblems of the Galicia division, the flags of the Cossack Sich, the Ukrainian Volunteer Corps, flags with the Sun and the inscription Solaris with a cross inside the letter "o", flags of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN).

The marchers chanted: "Glory to the nation-Death to the enemies", " Glory to Ukraine- Glory to heroes!", "Under the sign of lion!", "Galicia - division of heroes"," Glory to the soldiers of the Ukrainian-Russian war"," One and only free Ukraine!"

Among the them were children. Most of those present were dressed in black embroidered shirts, some in white shirts or military camouflage, and people in plain clothes were also present.

I can not find any 'western' media that reported the march.

Anka Feldhusen, the German ambassador to the Ukraine, condemned it. But here is how 112 Ukraine reported that:

German Ambassador condemns March dedicated to SS Division Galicia

Ambassador of Germany in Ukraine Anka Feldhusen has condemned the March dedicated to Waffen-SS Division Galicia that took place in Kyiv yesterday as she reported on Twitter.

“The detachments of Waffen-SS participated in the gravy military crimes and the Holocaust during World War II. Any volunteer organizations that fight and work in Ukraine today should be associated with them,” she wrote.

"Any volunteer organizations ... should be associated with them?"



Thankfully not. This is the Google translation of Feldhusen's Russian language tweet:

Waffen CC units were involved in the most serious war crimes and the Holocaust during World War II. No volunteer organization that is fighting and working for Ukraine today should be associated with them.


A Bing translation comes to the same result.

One wonders how 112 Ukraine's translation mistake happened.

Or is there a political intent behind it which I do not grasp?

Posted by b on April 29, 2021 at 13:51 UTC | Permalink

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@ Posted by: steven t johnson | May 1 2021 19:45 utc | 102

Slavery is an entirely economic issue on a macro scale. Secession means the South didn't see any possible path of victory against the North either through peaceful competition (the loss of California showed that they would be no match for the wage labor system of the North in a fair and free competition of systems scenario) nor through invasion and destruction of the North (because the North's industry and overwhelming population gave it an inherent larger and better war machine than the agricultural and bucolic South).

Necessary to state that the loss of California to the North happened in the legal sphere, not in the military sphere. Even in the artificially parity of the two houses, the South could not keep up with the times anymore.

The fact that the South decided to manifest their interests in the form of secession already is a geopolitical admission they were inferior to the North. If they thought they could subjugate the North in warfare, they would've not declared secession, but a war of conquest (under whatever ideological argument necessary). Therefore, the choice of the word "secession" instead of the plain "civil war" gives much more emphasis to the economic aspect of the war (nobody contests this wasn't a war, hence both terms use the word).

Of course, American historians use the term "Civil War" both because of patriotism (this was "their" civil war, not "any" civil war), but mostly for sentimental and propaganda reasons: they like to highlight the ideological aspect of the war to humanize the American people and to highlight that the country "healed" after the war. They use the term not to get either side (Confederate nostalgists and Northern/Liberal supremacists) angry, but they also use it, in my opinion, to tell to themselves and the rest of the world that the USA is here to stay, that it can reform eternally.

The reason for the War of Secession was only one: the USA'S dual-labor system (wage labor and slave labor) was unsustainable. This anomaly had to end someday, and it did explosively. The only point of argument is if it could end peacefully or not (my opinion is it could not), but that's for the true specialists in the area to discuss.

The USA was never good at History. Even nowadays, in allegedly "neutral" subjects, American historians are very weak and very propagandistic, very idealistic. Which is funny, because the Library of Congress is the greatest single source of historical documentation in existence today. Colonel David M. Glantz is the exception that proves the rule - but his case may easily be explained by the fact he's directly financed by the Pentagon (therefore shielded from pressure of the American book industry), and studies a field that's essential to the American Empire's survival.

The correct term, if you want to consider History a science, is "War of Secession", which is the term used by serious non-American historians. I'm not a specialist in the area (I have only an undergraduate level of expertise on it), but I agree with this choice.

Posted by: vk | May 1 2021 20:58 utc | 101

Why could the anomaly not have been ended peacefully by allowing the South to secede? Why did the North have to suppress secession by force of arms?

Posted by: lysias | May 1 2021 22:05 utc | 102

"Civil war" is a term that would have occurred to any educated American at the time. One of Julius Caesar's surviving works is "Commentarii de Bello Civili". An epic poem that once used to be much read is Lucan's "De Bello Civili" (otherwise known as the "Pharsalia"). In the 1860s, Latin was central to higher education.

"Civil war" is a good nonpartisan term that does not take sides between the pro-South terms "War of Northern Aggression" and "War Between the States" and the pro-North "War of the Rebellion".

Posted by: lysias | May 2 2021 0:29 utc | 103

vk@103 spouts nonsense that is instantly refuted by lysias@104. If it is just a matter of secession, then lysias draws the correct conclusion from vk's premise: That there were two countries and the South country could no longer hope to take over the whole, so must secede. The North being a different country is no more required to "conquer" the South country than it is required to conquer Canada or Cuba. Accepting secession no more threatened the existence of the North country than England accepting the secession of its American colonies threatened its existence. Thus, vk agrees the North was the aggressor, the tyrant, the totalitarian oppressor.

The reason the North could not accept secession is that tearing one country into separate parts involves tremendous material sacrifices which no ruling class accept. The reason the people of the north as a whole could not accept secession is that democracy, even bourgeois democracy, even in the perverted form which deludes itself a permanent minority should rule, does require that elections be regarded as decisive. vk's talk about economic competition ignores that the southern states seceded rather than accept loss of political control. That political control was why the social inferiority of the slave labor system *did not* directly doom slavery, which could never be eliminated by economic competition. (The talk above about the leverage of southern slave wealth and mere money is a diversion.) The destruction of even a bourgeois democracy at the behest of oligarchs would have been a world-historic defeat of human progress. Just like the defeat of the Dutch revolution, the Puritan Revolution, the French Revolution, the Mexican Revolution, the First Chinese Revolution and the Turkish revolution would also have been defeats. The defeat of the 1848 revolution was a tremendous defeat, the first harbinger of the historic bankruptcy of bourgeois democracy/capitalism. The nations that failed the test of 1848 were the seedbeds of the degenerate form of capitalism, fascism.

The bourgeois democratic revolution we call the US Civil War was never capable of truly resolving race issues, because race is inextricably mixed with class. Bourgeois democracy cannot resolve class issues. Nonetheless, bourgeois democracy, the purest form of capitalism at it heights, like capitalism's development of the productive forces, despite being now outmoded, was then a great thing. Reducing it to mere secession is about the pretense that democracy can be reformed with a little socialism, that *we* the superior people (after all, if the people of the past were so smart, would they be dead?) can fix it all up by unity etc. These illusions I have come to realize are why vk is so determined to ignore the capitalist road China is on. I suspect that if China turned left, vk would instantly reject China.

lysias as a retired naval officer is not an adherent of democracy at all. This is the kind of moral rot Trump was counting on if he could get the military to intervene in the election, first during the summer, then after he lost the vote.

Posted by: steven t johnson | May 2 2021 0:47 utc | 104

mostly for sentimental and propaganda reasons: they like to highlight the ideological aspect of the war to humanize the American people and to highlight that the country "healed" after the war.

would you say the same for the civil war in lebanon? it was a civil war, the term takes no sides nor does it highlight an ideology. i suppose one could claim the term is humanizing because, like all civil wars, it implies 'civilians'. but i never thought of the term, in itself, as propaganda or healing.

Posted by: annie | May 2 2021 1:03 utc | 105

@ Posted by: steven t johnson | May 2 2021 0:47 utc | 106

There were not two countries. There were two labor systems.

The Confederates were a wannabe new country. But want is not can. We know, with the benefit of hindsight, that there was never any chance for the South of seceding; the North would never allow that (and this Lincoln made very clear) and it had the power to impose that will to the South. The USA never had any risk of being partitioned. The secession and creation of a Herrenvolk paradise in the Deep South was an utopia.

So, just to wrap up: the image that the USA was a true confederation, where any State could secede at will, was a myth that only existed in the South's imagination. It's one thing to imagine there are two countries in one; it's a completely different thing make this dream a reality. The South was a living fossil from the times of the Virginian oligarchy of the 18th Century; it was well past its due date. The reality is that, by the 1850s, the North already was the true USA, and had full control of the entire American territory, the Southern slaveowners wanting it or not. The North kept the entire American territory and didn't accept secession for one simple reason: they could.

And who said the USA (the North) didn't try to conquer Canada? They indeed tried, in the War of 1812. The problem then was that, contrary to the Confederates, Canada had the full backing of the British Empire. And the British Empire was much stronger in 1812 than in 1776 (it would only reach its apex in 1851). As a result, the USA was easily defeated, the White House burned. The peace treaty imposed by the British to the Americans is the reason why the frontier between the USA and Canada is a straight line.

Cuba was treated by the Founding Fathers as a natural extension of the USA and indeed was planned to be annexed. The problem is that it was Spain's most profitable colony back then, and it was a difficult nut to crack. When the moment came to finally annex Cuba (mid-19th Century), there was another problem: Lincoln had just been elected and the annexation of Cuba would give the South a majority in the Senate. Lincoln then conditioned the conquest of Cuba to the end of slave labor in the island - a diplomatic way of stating that would never happen, since it is obvious the planters of Cuba would never give up being slaveowners. By the end of the period of Reconstruction, the USA had already innovated by creating a much cheaper and efficient system of colonizing Latin America: the cooptation of its local elites (which became "compradores") through its international corporations (the United Fruit being the most famous, in the case of Central America). Thus Neocolonialism was born.

Also, by the end of the 19th Century, the USA's model of direct territorial expansion, enshrined by the Founding Fathers, had clearly shown signs of exhaustion. The waves of immigrants from Europe were diminishing and, even if they had kept constant, they were far from enough of covering even the Midwest (which is a demographic desert even today), let alone the entire Latin America. By the time of Teddy Roosevelt, any ambitions of expanding the Union were long dead.

Posted by: vk | May 2 2021 1:08 utc | 106

@ Posted by: annie | May 2 2021 1:03 utc | 107

By pure chance, I know almost nothing about Lebanon (besides it being a completely artificial country, created by the French).

The War of Secession definitely was a civil war. I just think the term to be much more neutral and much more scientifically instructive than the term "American Civil War".

And the American historians dehumanize the other nations, so I think it is unprofessional on their part to over-humanize themselves by overquoting soldiers' letters and officers family dramas. It really misses the big picture (the inherent inferiority of the slave labor system in relation to the wage labor system; the economic transformation of the USA; the dissolution of the USA of the Founding Fathers; the installation of the kernel of a world empire etc. etc.).


@ Posted by: lysias | May 2 2021 0:29 utc | 105

The war of Julius Caesar against Cnaeus Pompeius (Magnus) was certainly a civil war. They were literally fighting for the control of the city of Rome (and, by association, of its territorial possessions).

Needless to say, Rome had a lot of civil wars. The Social War wasn't one of them.

Posted by: vk | May 2 2021 1:16 utc | 107

I may be a retired naval officer, but I am also the son of a New York City bus driver. Whay I see happening in this country is bad for the white working class.

Posted by: lysias | May 2 2021 1:36 utc | 108


Posted by: lysias | May 2 2021 1:53 utc | 109

re Posted by: lysias | May 2 2021 1:36 utc | 110

The working class is the working class whose real issues are common to all members, regardless of externally deemed cultural differentiation, why the need to divide it by race? That way lies disunity, the major disruptor of solidarity which is the only effective weapon against oppression the working class has ever had.
In my experience the peddlers of this line have been puppets of the elites sucked in to spouting poison as a way of destroying solidarity, our only lever.

Posted by: Debsisdead | May 2 2021 7:55 utc | 110

@annie "it was a civil war, the term takes no sides nor does it highlight an ideology"

Imo, what term "civil war" precisely does highlight the ideological (religious, ethnic) split. Civil war is a war within. Neighbors, family members, fight for the opposite sides, killing each other. Read The Quiet Don. Or watch Nicija Zemlja or something.

The North-South war was nothing like that. If we leave the underlying socioeconomic issues aside, it looks like this: the South seceded and formed a new country. It did succeed in forming a new geopolitical entity, with its own government, flag, currency, army, and control of its territory (Fort Sumter being the only exception) -- everything that defines an independent state. And only then the North invaded and, after a long bloody war, restored control over the whole territory.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | May 2 2021 8:21 utc | 111

Hi lysias (88),

And the United States, my country, would have allied itself with Germany, not Britain. And I think that would have been better, as an Irish-American who studied two years at Oxford and served two years as a German linguist in Berlin with the U.S. Air Force.
Can't disagree on that, but I suppose some of us would be interested to know how you decided upon that (e.g. what you saw in each country).

Posted by: joey_n | May 2 2021 8:55 utc | 112

Mao Cheng Ji@113 also correctly explains how vk's secession thesis makes the North into the invader of another country. vk's purely verbal claim that the south was defunct since Monroe (at a guess?) is nonsense, forgetting that the South dominated the Federal government and losing that domination to Lincoln's election is what prompted the civil war. vk's claims the North dominated are factually nonsense, like the entire analysis. War of Secession is an ideological concession to NeoConfederates like the usual suspects here.

Posted by: steven t johnson | May 2 2021 13:53 utc | 113

By the way, lysias' speculation about the South allying with England and the rump US with Germany copies some of Harry Turtledove's alternate history SF series, the so-called Southern Victory series, which starts with How Few Remain. Turtledove is pretty right-wing of course.

Posted by: steven t johnson | May 2 2021 13:56 utc | 114 could've been a civil war, if the US government preemptively, before the secession, issued an equivalent of the emancipation proclamation, and sent the national guard to enforce it. But, without getting into details and personalities, I have the impression that most of the establishment (New England especially, for obvious reasons) was perfectly satisfied with the southern cotton industry. Tsk. Internal contradictions, as they say.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | May 2 2021 15:00 utc | 115

@ Posted by: steven t johnson | May 2 2021 13:53 utc | 115

I never said the War of Secession wasn't a civil war. I said it was a better term to use in a historical context.

The choice for secession by the Southern States was a political choice made out of economic necessity. But, as a fact on the field, it was merely a legal chimera, never had a chance to happen in real life. The era of the free federation of republics was already over, and the South never had any chance of seceding. There was never two USAs, that's why it was a civil war.

As for the Southern political-ideological resurgence during the Reconstruction, the explanation is very simple: the North, albeit being victorious, didn't achieve a total victory over the South. The concept of unconditional surrender (war of annihilation) only became a thing during WWII. Besides, Lincoln was the moderate/centrist POTUS par excellence; he never intended to fully destroy the Confederates, hence many Southern elites were reformed and reabsorbed after the war.

Posted by: vk | May 2 2021 15:58 utc | 116

What folks like Tom67 won't tell you is that the famines in Ukraine in the 1930s weren't restricted to Ukraine, or even the more Ukrainianized parts of Soviet Ukraine. In fact, the parts of Ukraine that suffered most were the Kharkovskaya and Odesskaya Oblasts, which are some of the least Ukrainianized parts of what is now Ukraine. Of course, Galicia was part of Poland at the time, and whatever problems it faced, the Soviet famine wasn't one.

Not only that, but the Ukrainian nationalists of the 1930s didn't really care about the famine. Like the fascists that they were, they had a burning passion for The Nation, Das Volk, but at the same time, they couldn't care less about what happened to people. In fact, they looked up to the Soviet Union, because Soviet Ukraine offered cultural autonomy and less of the heavy-handed polonization of the Second Polish Republic.

In fact, Poles and Jews, not Russians, were the Ukrainian nationalist boogeymen of the day. Jews still are high on the list of folk devils.

Once Molotov-Ribbentrop happened, Ukrainian nationalists were thrilled to be sprung from the Polish prisons where so many of them had been cooling off and they were excited to be getting to work. They were to get a rude awakening, however, when they found out how just little I. V. Stalin was interested in them and their opinions on how Soviet Ukraine ought to be run.

Posted by: Feral Finster | May 4 2021 15:17 utc | 117

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