KGB anti-nationalist tactics

Politics, History, & 'Conspiracy'
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Luigi
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KGB anti-nationalist tactics

Postby Luigi » Tue Jun 22, 2021 2:15 pm

Hey guys. I found this article today talking about how the KGB was dealing with Ukrainian and Belorussian nationalism, and what they basically did was invent a new ethnicity that overlaps both countries and promote it to weaken to the other movements. The nationalists from the time suspected this was all just a big KGB ruse, and they were correct. Looks like another example of something that was a conspiracy theory until it wasnt.

A YOTVINGIAN CHIEF FROM THE KGB

How the communist special services tried to drive a wedge between Ukrainians and Belarusians by reviving a separate Yotvingian people in Western Polissia

The rapid rise of Ukrainian and Belarusian national identity during perestroika in the 1980s and the growing interest of these two peoples in their native languages, history, ethnography and folklore made the KGB and the communist government nervous. Several political projects were launched to counter this trend. These were based on the constructionist idea that a nation is an “imagined society” created by intellectuals. The thinking was that it could be fragmented and new, loyal nations could be forged from it. One of the most vivid, exotic and, at the same time, abhorrent actions was the revival of the “Yotvingian people” and the “Yotvingian language” in the Ukrainian and Belarusian parts of Western Polissia.

A POLITICAL REINCARNATION

Mikola Sheliagovich, poet, journalist, teacher at the Minsk Police Academy and a KGB agent, was the leader of this political movement. In April 1988, he set up the Polisse Cultural Union which promoted “the revival of the Western Polissian language and culture” and the recognition of residents of Western Polissia as a distinct nation. He argued in the press that they were not Belarusians but, rather, descendants of the Balts, “Yotvingians”, and had their own “Yotvingian” language.

Since 1989, the Zbudinne (Awakening) newspaper was published as an organ of the Yotvingian revival movement. It was a biweekly publication written in a weird mixture of Ukrainian and Belarusian in which brand new coinages predominated. It should be said that Sheliagovich’s initial appeals attracted the interest of Ukrainian intellectuals in the Polissia region. They were ready to lend him a hand and act together. But once the Polisse Union was founded, it became clear that it sought separatism rather than the promotion of folk culture, so the Ukrainians severed contacts with Sheliagovich.

The political mission of the self-styled Yotvingians was completely pro-communist and pro-Russian. Their union received assistance from government ministers and Belarusian MPs, party functionaries, CEOs of government organizations, directors of leading factories and plants, newly rich businessmen and the almighty KGB. This handful of separatists were well-financed.

The chief of the “Yotvingians” made several claims: there was no Belarus; it could not have one language and culture; Belarus did not and would not have intellectuals or its own state; all things Belarusian were temporary, accidental and incomplete, while nationalists were the main enemy. His organization was effectively promoting the secession of Western Polissia from the republic. As a more radical option, Sheliagovich suggested forming a Belarusian-Polissian federation. There were even calls to set up checkpoints and a local national guard, but these remained on paper only. There were also territorial claims made against Ukraine.

In April 1990, a Western Polissia (Yotvingian) scholarly conference was held, declaring that the populations of the Brest and Pinsk regions of Belarus, the Volyn region of Ukraine, and the Podlachia and Chełm regions of Poland had the right to form an independent ethnic group. The conference was scheduled to take place in Pinsk, but the city turned out to be unprepared for the event, so it was moved to Minsk. Some presentations were made in “Yotvingian”. This gathering of separatists was made to appear more authoritative when it received welcoming addresses from Nikita Tolstoi, a leading Soviet Slavicist and specialist in the folk culture of Polissia, and his students Aleksandr Dulichenko from Tartu, Oleg Poliakov from Vilnius and Fyodar Klimchuk from Minsk. Five years later, Tolstoi participated in a congress of Ruthenian separatists in Slovakia where he welcomed the codification of the “Carpatho-Ruthenian literary language”. He was joined there by Dulichenko, another ardent advocate of the Ruthenians and the compiler of a two-volume dictionary of Russian obscenities.

FROM THE “YOTVINGIAN” LANGUAGE TO RUSSIFICATION

In contrast, some Belarusian public activists and authors such as Nil Gilevich and Zianon Pazniak, were very critical of Sheliagovich and his statements, correctly perceiving him as a KGB operative that threatened the territorial and national integrity of Belarus. Meanwhile, ethnographers proved that all Belarusians, rather than one particular group, had Baltic roots. The Polisse Union gradually fell into decline, failing to drum up the support of Polissia residents themselves, who found the artificial “Yotvingian” language foreign and barely comprehensible. Only one book – a chess handbook – was published in this language to date. Attempts to create a Movement of Western Polissia Residents, a Yotvingian National Party and a Western Polissian Regional Party all fell through.

In 1991-92, Sheliagovich still participated, with Tolstoi’s support, in congresses of Slavic cultures in Ljubljana as a representative of “Yotvingian culture”, while the odd Zbudinne newspaper, which experimented with the Latin script, was still available in newspaper kiosks in Brest Oblast and Minsk. Sheliagovich later distanced himself from the Yotvingian idea and became one of the most successful businessmen in Minsk. In 1994, he ran for president and later moved to Kaliningrad Oblast in the Russian Federation.

As soon as Alexander Lukashenko rose to power in Belarus and forced Belarusian-language and bilingual schools to teach in Russian, the “Yotvingians” mysteriously disappeared as if they had never existed. Not one supporter of their idea or speaker of the “West-Polissian literary language” remained. It seems they were all a mirage created by the KGB and the FSB in the first place. Lukashenko once defended the Polisse Union against nationalists at a meeting of the Belarusian Supreme Council, but he recently claimed credit for having prevented the division of the country and the creation of the Polissian Republic. The revival of the Yotvingians, aimed at dividing the Belarusian and Ukrainian nations, never came to pass.



https://ukrainianweek.com/History/65799
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Edge Guerrero
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Postby Edge Guerrero » Thu Jun 24, 2021 1:48 pm

- Break people will and silence their voices.
A tale as old as the first civilizations.
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Don't be selfish, preserve this world for the next generations.

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Regret won't waste my life again
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Canuckster
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Postby Canuckster » Thu Jun 24, 2021 5:02 pm

Fuck, I can't read that blue text ugh
People say they all want the truth, but when they are confronted with a truth that disagrees with them, they balk at it as if it were an unwanted zombie apocalypse come to destroy civilization.

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Edge Guerrero
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Postby Edge Guerrero » Fri Jun 25, 2021 8:35 pm

Canuckster wrote:Fuck, I can't read that blue text ugh


- It's worth. :geek:
- I rent this space for advertising

Don't be selfish, preserve this world for the next generations.

I'll never long for what might have been
Regret won't waste my life again
I won't look back I'll fight to remain


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