UKAR | 1997 | Lubomyr Prytulak []

Who murdered Volodymyr Katelnytsky?
"And so this is what our glorious Ukraine has been brought to: she falls victim to invisible forces which destroy everything noble in her, bring people to starvation, terrorize the boldest of her sons and daughters, threaten and murder even the members of her parliament." —Ukrainian Voice
Who Murdered Volodymyr Katelnytsky?

The death of Volodymyr Katelnytsky

My source is a Ukrainskyi Holos (Ukrainian Voice) article mailed to me by someone who knew Volodymyr Katelnytsky.  The attribution that is hand-written on the article is "4-20 August, 1997, p. 1."

The Ukrainskyi Holos article reports that Volodymyr Katelnytsky was tortured to death in his apartment in Kyiv, Ukraine on the night of 7-8 July 1997.  His mother, Lykeria, who was 81 years old, was tortured and died before the eyes of her son; her body was found with 21 stab wounds.  When Katelnytsky's sister wanted to enter the apartment in which the crime had been committed, she was beaten by Kyiv police, and some members of the Katelnytsky family were arrested.  The murders are considered to have been politically motivated.  Volodymyr Katelnytsky's funeral was attended by some two thousand mourners.

The life of Volodymyr Katelnytsky

Volodymyr Katelnytsky was a professional journalist.  He was active in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Kyiv Patriarchate, was head of the Brotherhood of St. Andrej Pervozvanyi in Kyiv, and supervised the tour of the chief cities of Ukraine by Metropolitan Wasyl in May 1993.  He was also active politically, serving as Deputy Head of the Ukrainian Christian Democratic Party.  In Canada and the United States, he may be best remembered for the role he played as President of the Committee for the Defense of John Demjanjuk.

Also prominent among Volodymyr Katelnytsky's activities was the dissemination of a Ukrainian version of what happened at Babyn Yar, similar, I believe, to the version advocated on the Ukrainian Archive.  One interesting result of Volodymyr Katelnytsky's Babyn Yar activities is that he was sued for them in Ukrainian court by Jewish organizations, that in his defense he brought forward historical aerial reconnaissance photographs showing that none of the activities said to have taken place at Babyn Yar was visible from the air — not visible, that is, were signs of the execution and burial of 33,771 Jews, or the later disinterment and burning of their bodies.  As a result of his convincing defense, the court acquitted Volodymyr Katelnytsky of the charges brought against him.

Who murdered Volodymyr Katelnytsky?

As we have no direct evidence of who murdered Volodymyr Katelnytsky, we can only perform a Cui bono? analysis which will at least tell us where to start looking.  That is, if it is the case that the three most prominent events in Volodymyr Katelnytsky's life were: (1) that he defended John Demjanjuk, (2) that he contradicted the classical version of the Babyn Yar story, and (3) that he was tortured to death along with his mother, then it would take a mental paralysis with which not all of us have as yet been seized to refuse to consider the first two of these events as possibly having caused the third.

Ukraine is unsafe for ... whom?

The media would have us believe that Ukraine is unsafe for Jews.  This was the thrust of Morley Safer's infamous broadcast, The Ugly Face of Freedom, and of an unceasing stream of similar anti-Ukrainian calumny.  However, no cases can be found of prominent Jewish activists being tortured to death in their apartments, whether with their mothers or alone.  Had any Ukrainian Jew ever died the way that Volodymyr Katelnytsky did, then you can be sure that we would have heard about it more than once, and that it would have been adduced as further evidence of undying Ukrainian anti-Semitism.  In fact, however, it is not Jews who are being tortured to death in Ukraine, but Ukrainians.  Here is a nation in which no evidence can be found of undying anti-Semitism, but in which evidence proliferates of undying anti-Ukrainianism.  This undying anti-Ukrainianism would constitute an excellent news story, and it can be plentifully documented — and yet the media do not cover this story.  They cover instead the alternative story of the persecution of Jews within Ukraine, and broadcast this story even when they have been unable to confirm it.

A tyrannical state ... toward some!

In Ukraine today, businessmen — even Western businessmen — are assassinated.  Members of parliament are assassinated, or kidnaped and never heard from again.  Ukrainian nationalists — even today — are being tortured to death.  All this blood is being shed with impunity.  The Ukrainian people see these crimes, they see the absence of punishment, and they rightly conclude that bandits rule the nation, and that the law offers them no protection — neither for their rights, nor for the safety of their persons.  The Ukrainian people know that walking among them are butchers, and that though today's rulers call themselves democrats and capitalists, they are in reality the same vicious and ruthlessnomenklatura that has been bleeding Ukraine for decades, if not for centuries.

Ukrainians will begin to believe that they have rights, and businessmen will begin to be convinced that their investments are on the road to enjoying the protection of the law, when they see demonstrated before them — as a first step — that in Ukraine, butchery is followed by hanging.

Ukraine's sham democracy is a tool of oppression

Let us recollect that when Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau suspended democratic rights in Canada by imposing the War Measures Act, Canada was under far less threat than Ukraine is today, or than Ukraine has been continuously from the first moment of its independence in 1991.  Democracy only works once stability, order, and the rule of law have been imposed — that is the principle that Canada follows, and it is a principle that should be extended to Ukraine.  Ukraine does not have stability, order, and the rule of law; therefore, Ukraine's democracy will not work.  With Ukrainian journalists being regularly intimidated, assaulted, and murdered, Ukraine doesn't even have that most essential of prerequisites of democracy — a free press.  Ukraine would benefit from enjoying the fate of a power defeated by the West in war — say Germany or Japan.  First, the West marches in, hangs the butchers, kicks out the corrupt and the incompetent, imposes stability, order, and the rule of law, sets up a free press — and only after that does democracy have the opportunity to take root.  Those who demand the continuation of Ukraine's current sham of a democracy — without at the same time demanding the rule of law and freedom of the press — are condemning Ukraine to continuing slavery.

Ukraine is not yet out of the woods

The Ukrainskyi Holos article cited above ends with (my translation):

And so this is what our glorious Ukraine has been brought to: she falls victim to invisible forces which destroy everything noble in her, bring people to starvation, terrorize the boldest of her sons and daughters, threaten and murder even the members of her parliament.