Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageNeo-Nazi battalion adds sinister presence to Ukraine conflict

By Martin Laine     Jul 31, 2014 in World
A paramilitary militia made up of extreme ultranationalists is fighting alongside the Ukrainian army for a free Ukraine. The question is, what will they do if the Ukrainians win?
Known as the Asov Battalion, the group is made up of about 300 mostly foreign neo-Nazi volunteers. Their emblems include several associated with Nazism, such the “wolf’s hook” and the “black sun,” according to an article in the Irish Times.
Their aim is to “prepare Ukraine for further expansion and to struggle for the liberation of the entire White Race from the domination of the internationalist capital,” and “to punish severely sexual perversions and any interracial contacts that lead to the extinction of the white man,” according to an article on the BBC news website.
“Volunteers have come from Russia, France, Italy, Belarus, Canada, Sweden, Slovenia – many countries,” said Oleg Odnoroshenko, a member of the Social National Assembly, an ultra-nationalist group in the Ukraine, which organized and armed the Azov Battalion along with the Ukrainian Interior Ministry.
However, they are not formally part of the Ukrainian military. A spokesman for the interior ministry insists there are no foreigners fighting in the Ukraine.
“The Social National Assembly is not a neo-Nazi organization,” said Anton Geraschenko in the BBC article. “It is a party of Ukrainian patriots who are giving their lives while the rich Europeans are only talking about supporting Ukraine. There are foreign journalists from Sweden, Spain, and Italy who have come to report on the heroic achievements of the fighters in their struggle against terrorism."
Graschenko’s remarks notwithstanding, one of the more prominent members of the Asov Battalion is a Swede, Mikael Skillt, a member of a Swedish neo-Nazi Party. He is the commander of a reconnaissance unit and a sniper, so effective that the pro-Russian separatists have offered a $7,000 bounty on his head.
For the time being, the Asov Battalion is proving helpful in the fight against the pro-Russian separatists. But should they prevail, the neo-Nazis have a very different view of the future than the vast majority of Ukrainians, who have formed a democratic government and held democratic elections.
“My goal is a white Ukraine,” said Skillt in an article in The Local. “I am a nationalist and want there still to be white Europeans in Europe. This could be the grounds for something much bigger. It’s not impossible that the Kiev government will fall.”
“They are not fighting for a democratic Ukraine,” said Anton Shekhotsov, a Ukrainian political scientist. “Their vision of Ukraine is a fascist dictatorship.”
More about Neonazis, Asov Battalion, mikael skillt
Latest News
Top News