One wonders why the Russian gentiles so easily allowed the soviets to take over? It seems to be a constant circular power struggle in these slavic lands. Jews are oppressed, but eventually manage to rise to the top again. Then the gentiles lash out at the Jews in resentment, killing many. Then the cycle repeats itself-seemingly endlessly. One would think there'd be a less violent, more balanced way of distributing the power, etc.
I was recently thinking about the massacre which took place in 1941, at Babi Yar, in Kiev. Have been there and gazed pensively into the ravine. Over 33,000 Jews were ruthlessly murdered in two days, together with some Roma, Orthodox priests, Ukrainian nationalists etc. But it seems the Ukrainians collaborated with the Nazis at Babi Yar. And many Ukrainians informed on the Jews too. This seems so hard for me to comprehend. How and why would people inform on their fellow countrymen-regardless of religion? Also, the chief synagogue in Kiev was turned into a puppet theatre during the Soviet Regime.
I struggle to understand this complex situation...
Rosehip, I understand your struggle...
My own great-grandmother, who was half-Russian (from a very aristocratic, noble family) and half-Ukrainian, and a widow of a guy who was 100% Greek, survived the German occupation of Kyiv, living in her room in the "communal" apartment on the Saksagans'koho Street, just a few blocks from the Tolstoy Square and the Shevchenko Boulevard downtown. Her daughter (my maternal grandmother) and her granddaugher (my mother, who was only 11 when the war began) - escaped to the Omsk oblast, where my maternal grandma had some relatives, - but my great-grandmother most stubbornly refused to leave Kyiv, saying that the Germans will not last long anyway.
A number of her neighbors in that "communal apartment" were Jews. When the Germans announced that all Jews of Kyiv must take all their belongings and move to the designated places to be "evacuated," these residents of my great-grandma's apartment did exactly what was asked of them to do. No one had any doubts that they would be transported to some place where the life would be better for them (and, as some "Aryans" sarcastically said, they would not any longer mess with their neighbours' lives). Many older Jews recalled how Germans who occupied Kyiv in 1918 were kind to them and how the Germans were generally a "civilized, kind, intelligent people." There were rumors that the Jews would be transported to Germany (""c'mon, everybody knows that these Germans just love Jews!"), or to some exotic land (Madagascar?), etc.
I later read in some non-Soviet sources that, actually, some number of Jews who were Kyiv residents were, in fact, made, forced, to board trains and leave Kyiv, no one knows to what destination.
In the Babyn Yar (Russ. Babiy Yar), indeed, the Germans organized some sort of a camp for various prisoners, and a lot of them were shot there with the help of machine guns. And indeed, just like you wrote, those who were executed included some members of the Ukrainian nationalist underground (the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, "Ukrayins'ka Povstans'ka Armiya," UPA), as well as some Communists captured by the German Army, and also, probably, common criminals, or psychiatric patients whom the Nazis regarded as not worth living). To what extent the testimonies that "all Jews were driven to the Babyn Yar and shot there" are true - I really do not know, because I have read the most conflicting, the most outrageously contradicting testimonies on this issue.
What I have heard from my great-grandma, however, was that neither she nor anyone she knew in Kyiv "collaborated" with the Nazis in any way, "telling" them on Jews. In the late 1944, when Kyiv was re-captured by the Soviet Army, some of her former Jewish - VERY Jewish - neighbors who disappeared in 1941 - Sara Mikhailovna Peisakhovich, Sofia Mikhailovna (actually Moiseevna) Bogatyrskaya, and a few others - suddenly re-appeared, alive and well, and occupied their rooms in her Saksagans'koho Street "communal" apartment.
Now, I am not writing all this to say that Jews were not harmed at all by the Nazis. Of course they were! And of course, most definitely, many of them were captured, humiliated, tortured, massacred by the Nazis.
But so were many non-Jews.
And yet, the mere fact that there were many, many, many, MANY non-Jewish people who were massacred by the Nazis in the lands that the German Army occupied in te 1940-s, is seldom, if ever, even mentioned.
And the fact that more Ukrainian peasants were killed by the artificial starvation of 1932-33 organized by Lazar Kaganovich and Henrich Yagoda (Yehuda) than Jews killed during the "Holocaust," remains a TABOO. It can NEVER be mentioned, wrote about, appreciated, wept about.
This makes me suspect that in the eyes of the world, to a very large extent "directed" by Zionist Jews, my people, Ukrainians - as well as many other peoples - are LESS important, less valuable, less HUMAN than the "God's chosen people."
But to Northen Americans, none of this matters...