Ukrainian Revolution Awakens Totalitarian Demons
While attention has been focused on Russia’s occupation of Crimea, pro-Russian Ukrainians and uninformed observers have raised alarm in recent weeks about a purported resurgence of fascism in Kiev. Reports have circulated about the interim Ukrainian government supposedly banning the Communist Party, lifting bans on Nazi propaganda, or committing a host of politically unconscionable acts. Setting aside the utter improbability that any such initiatives would become the law of the land, these claims have certainly scared the crap out of some people.
For the West (and a minority of Russians), the storyline has been that a pro-democracy movement—which strives for human rights, dignity, yoga pants, and all that jazz—overthrew a corrupt Ukrainian regime that was merely a puppet of Russia. For Russians (and a minority of Westerners), it’s been that an armed group illegally seized power in a right-wing coup with the support of neo-fascists.
The political arguments surrounding the events in Crimea are similar to what you’d expect from the average American online political discussion, even if most of the Hitler comparisons are written in Cyrillic.