July 12, 2016

Ukrainian-Polish Relations Should Remain within the Framework of Bilateral Ones

The Independent Analytical Center for Geopolitical Studies “Borysfen Intel” affords ground to the analysts generation for expressing their point of view regarding the political, economic, security, information situation in Ukraine and in the world in general, according to their personal geopolitical studies and analyses.


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Bohdan Sokolovskyi


The Upper House (Senate) of the Polish Parliament on 7 July 2016, decided and at the same time recommended the Polish Sejm to recognize, in particular, that the killings in Volyn region in 1943 were genocide of the Polish people. In this regard, taking into consideration the experience of those who had been involved in the tragic events, it is worth pointing out the following:

Firstly, all the citizens of Ukraine once again express their sincere condolences to the Poles in connection with the tragedies, which they had experienced in the last century, including in Volyn in 1943. Most clearly this position was announced at the beginning of the 2000s by the Presidents of Ukraine and Poland L. Kuchma and A. Kwasniewski, repeating the position of “forgiving and asking for forgiveness”.

Secondly, in 1943 Volyn did not belong to the Ukrainian state, so — it did not belong to the Ukrainians, because it was occupied by Nazi Germany. This means that for everything taking place in the occupied territory, including in the Volyn region, not Ukrainians, but the occupier country should be responsible — regardless of who and what was trying to do there.

Thirdly, the events in Volyn region in 1943 should not be considered out of the context, they should be analyzed as a component in the row of events that occurred on the territory of Western Ukraine in the 20th century. Then, in particular, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army fighters, their companions and soldiers of the Polish Krayova (Home) Army and like-minded people were convinced that they were defending the rights of their compatriots. A decision on what to do was made, usually without their knowledge, and often under the pressure of the artificially created political circumstances, and sometimes — due to the influence of third parties, and for the sake of provocation. So far, not all the events of that time have been objectively studied. Not all the reasons for certain actions, mistakes of the past, etc, have been found out. To reproduce the whole picture of the political situation, all these events in the complex should be objectively studied, in order to, at least, not to repeat the mistakes. And this should be done by scientists, not politicians, naturally constituting the majority in the parliaments of all nations. In the end, the pages of the past, even the mistakes on both sides should be forgotten for the sake of the European future of our peoples.

Fourthly, Ukrainians and Poles have shown not only to their neighbors, but to the whole world a unique example of peaceful coexistence of representatives of the Ukrainian and Polish peoples — for centuries they coexisted, developing their culture, religion, and other national values, etc., without the hegemony of one nation, really respecting neighbor countries. So it was in Lyubachiv, Yaroslav, Peremishel, Lublin regions (all are Poland now) and in Volyn region, and so on. In a word, in the entire Western Ukraine until 1937, inclusive. Since 1938, there was enmity between the two nations. It is known straight from the source — from the witnesses of those events, in particular, Ukrainian and Polish immigrants who had to leave their homes and to go into the unknown. And they were made to do so not by Ukrainians or Poles, but by a third party.

So, before doing something, it is necessary to answer a series of questions: “Who instigated the enmity of 1937/1938?”; “Weren't they those who today benefit from tension between Ukrainians and Poles?”; “Do we, therefore, without a professional analysis of the past, want to plan the future?”; “Won't we take into account our own experience and will become subjects to someone else's dirty games again?” and so on.

Among other things, today we can say unequivocally that the decision of the Upper House of the Polish Parliament and the expected decision of the Polish Sejm on the events in Volyn region in 1943 will not contribute to either the Poles or the Ukrainians or the Ukrainian-Polish relations. But from them will benefit third forces interested in the tensions within the Ukrainian and Polish nations and between them.