Recently Viktor Yanukovych signed a decree on measures in connection with the 80th anniversary of the Holodomor of 1932-33 in Ukraine. This document is the first decree regarding the Holodomor in the time of Yanukovych’s presidency. Experts stress that with such adequate steps Yanukovych once again demonstrated the evolution of his views on state policy. “While the opposition is ‘pounding’ on the door of the Kyiv City Council, Yanukovych has been actively running the presidential campaign on a large scale,” Larysa Ivshyna, The Day’s Editor-in-Chief, commented on her Facebook page.
According to the text of the decree, an organizing committee on preparation and holding mournful events to be held on November 23, the day of commemorating the victims of the man-made famines, will be formed in all Ukrainian cities. A number of events will be held in cooperation with the diaspora.
“A few months ago we drafted a program for marking the anniversary of this tragedy and suggested it to the Presidential Administration,” Stanislav Kulchytsky, Ph.D. in History and Deputy Director of the Institute of Ukrainian History at the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (NAN) told The Day. “They collected all the suggestions and now issued a decree.” According to the historian, there is enough time for the preparations. At the same time, the organization of thematic conferences has already lasted for over a year. According to the expert, the discussion on the Holodomor will take place in the circles of experts in Ukraine, Canada, and the United States. “We invited experts from different countries, not only Ukraine and Russia, since this issue reached a global level. In general, we now have more widespread global scientific opinion that the events of 1932-33 were a man-made famine. In particular, we have documentary evidence that it was an act of genocide,” added Kulchytsky.
The Russian side shows another position in these matters. Interestingly, readers of Russian informational online resources called the decree an ideological response of Ukraine to the “economic war” waged by Russia. “Top state officials of the Russian Federation cannot mature to realize that the Soviet government could do such terrible things. Stalin made such decision taking care of his career, trying to stay in power. He wanted everyone to be overwhelmed with fear and he managed to do so. Perhaps, the reason for this is that the current government in Russia did not go far away from the government of the Soviet Union,” explained the historian.
What concerns Ukrainian society, there is a certain progress observed. “After the adoption of the law on the Holodomor, which was actively supported by The Day, and some other events the vast majority of people learned about this crime of Joseph Stalin. In fact, many kept silent about this subject until the 1980s, when it was allowed to speak about it, since nearly every family, who comes from rural territories, has relatives that died back then,” told Kulchytsky.