Ukraine at war: an open lecture by Anatoliy Podolskyi, director of the Ukrainian Center for the study of the history of the Holocaust, for students of NULES of Ukraine

23 квітня 2022 року

 On April 22, 2022, an open lecture was held (online on the Webex platform) by the director of the Ukrainian Center for the study of the history of the Holocaust, candidate of historical sciences Anatoliy Yukhymovych Podolskyi "Ukraine is at war. Historical parallels with the past. The path to victory over the enemy."

  Anatoliy Yukhymovych has been working on the topic of the Holocaust for many years, and his research interests include problems of Ukrainian-Jewish relations in the historical perspective; history of the Holocaust; comparative studies of the history of genocides of the XX century; studies on culture and politics of memory (Memory Studies) about the Second World War. He is a world-renowned scientist, a participant in many international scientific events from Jewish Studies in Ukraine, Israel, Great Britain, USA, Canada, Poland, Germany, Austria, France, Moldova and other countries.


 More than 150 instructors, postgraduates, and students  of  NULES of Ukraine, which are now located in different parts of Ukraine, gathered to listen to the lecturer. The Dean of the faculty of humanities and pedagogy  Inna Savytska addressed the audience with a welcoming speech in which she stressed the importance and necessity of speaking right now on these extremely important and vital topics, since our history is being created now and our tomorrow depends on today, and right now we must not forget our past. She also stressed the relevance of the topic of the lecture under martial law. She recalled the long-standing, fruitful and friendly relations with the Ukrainian Center for the study of the history of the Holocaust, because teachers and students of the faculty of humanities and pedagogy have long been actively involved in various events, conferences, seminars, projects of the Center.


  The lecturer began his report with historical parallels between the extermination of Jews by Hitler's Nazis and the military actions currently taking place on the territory of Ukraine, arguing that when people do not learn the lessons of history, they are doomed to repeat them. The refrain of the speech was the statement: we will no longer be able to study the past, history, without drawing parallels with the modern war. The experience of Ukrainians from occupation, captivity, and participants in military operations will now prevail over the previous historical military experience of mankind.

  Ukrainians in the war against the Russian invaders defend their lives, and not only their right to a free future, but also their past. After all, by destroying Ukraine, the enemies also took a swing at our historical memory. "Enemies revile our past, they want to take away our memory. We are talking about our culture, our history, art, and spiritual life," Anatoliy Podolskyi said. Today, my friends from occupied Melitopol reported that the invaders are taking Ukrainian books and history textbooks from teachers and burning them, as the Nazis once did in Germany in 1933, making bonfires out of books by writers they didn't have time for.

  The history of all peoples shows that they have always fought for their right to exist in a hard struggle, with weapons in their hands. This is how a common identity is formed, the right to self-determination and the exercise of one's own freedom is won. During the eight years of Ukrainian resistance to Russian aggression, the formation of Ukrainian national unity, consciousness, and identity took place. Today we are united by a powerful and bright National idea of a free and independent Ukraine, watered with the blood of the victims of the Russian invasion, Ukrainian citizens. The lecturer showed photos of Kyiv, Odessa during the Second World War and 2022, pointing out direct allusions that arise when we observe our hometowns, which are now equipped with trenches, anti-tank hedgehogs, sandbags and the like to protect against the enemy. Russians today are compared to Hitler's invaders. From the victorious people in World War II, they turned into attackers, invaders, aggressors, thieves who desecrated their contribution to the victory over Nazism, and lost the right to celebrate the victory over Hitler's Nazis.

  Anatoliy Podolskyi gave an example of famous people who survived the horrors of World War II, their experience today remains extremely relevant for humanity. Martin Niemeller, author of famous words "When they came...", argued that a person is obliged to draw conclusions from crimes against humanity, condemn and not allow them, otherwise they will be repeated. French historian Alain Besancon emphasized the collective responsibility of the entire society for tolerance towards totalitarianism. A country that has not worked out its totalitarian past, has not repented before the world, will return to its past crimes again. Long before the current war, he pointed out that Russia did not recognize the criminality of the Stalinist regime, moreover, Putin rehabilitated the dictator and himself became the bloody dictator of the 21st century.

  For twenty years, Anatoliy Yukhymovych interviewed witnesses of war crimes during the Second World War. He states that the question of, "Can you excuse the murders?»  people answered: "We can forgive, we can't forget"Vladimir Yankelevych a French philosopher of Jewish descent, turned away from German philosophy and music because he believed that German culture was not only unable to stop the Holocaust, but on the contrary, the Holocaust grew out of German culture. He expressed his attitude towards the Germans in the words: "I have a very long way to go to you," referring to the gap that, after the experience, lay forever between him and the Germans, even if they were not related to the crimes of the Nazis. Similarly, we will never forget these bloody events, and it will take a long time to come up with the idea of forgiveness. Research" Memory Studies" reveals many cases when people who have experienced violence feel disgust for everything related to native speakers, the language of rapists. Ukrainians today also have an aversion to the Russian language, although before that they freely used it in everyday life.

  All those present did not remain indifferent to the topic under discussion, the speaker was asked a lot of questions – both directly and in the chat.

  Graduate student of the department of history and philosophy of history,of thefaculty of history and philosophyof the M.P. Drahomanov NPU  Denys Buryanov drew attention to the problem of "fraternal peoples" and stressed that even during the 1917 revolution, Russian politicians sincerely believed that Ukrainians were not a separate people, and the Ukrainian language was only a dialect of Russian. Anatoliy Yukhymovych supported this thesis and confirmed that this problem has manifested itself in a new way in our time in the ukrainophobic propaganda of the Putin regime.
  Kovalyova Sofia student of the faculty of humanities and pedagogy of NULES of Ukraine, group MB 21001b stressed that the USSR was replaced by the Russian Federation, but the essence of the new Russia has not changed and is there any hope that these changes will take place? Answering the question, the lecturer noted that this problem is much deeper and lies in the plane of mentality. Therefore, it is probably useless to expect drastic changes and sincere repentance from Russians.
  Valentyna Kultenkohead of the department of philosophy and international communication asked: "Francis Fukuyama, following the events of our war, claims that the United Nations Security Council has once again 'proved its futility'. Do you see the ability of the United world to really resist such crimes, not to express protests and indignation, but to really influence the process?" Answering this question, Anatoliy Yukhymovych compared B. Johnson with V. Churchill and stressed that it is very good for us that he does not behave like N. Chamberlain. Therefore, we hope for the continued and worthy support of a democratic united West.


   Anatoliy Yukhymovych Podolskyi is a historian and scientist, for whom the genocide two months ago was a problem of theoretical understanding of the atrocities of the past. Today, this topic has become a direct approximation for every Ukrainian, for all people of the free world. Call: "Never again!"- we understand not only with our mind, every cell of our being is imbued with it. And the speaker's speech clearly demonstrated this – with the tears that from time to time came to the eyes of those present, the trembling of the voice, the pain that was visible in the eyes of everyone, and in our common faith in the victory of Ukraine and good in this cruel confrontation.

Valentyna Kultenko,
acting head of the department of philosophy and international communication,
Victoria Khvist,
associate professor of the department of international relations and social sciences



Regional Educational Institutions (синій)To Applicants (синій)Press-centre

Натисніть «Подобається», щоб читати
новини НУБіП України в Facebook