Are Jews in Eastern Ukraine Being Told to Register with Local Authorities?

World War II happened over 70 years ago. The ghosts of World War II, however, are as real today as they were in 1940. One of the legacies of the Nazi uprising is the reality of what men can do to each other based solely on irrational hatreds over miniscule differences… like genetics and religion. The Nazis’ place in history is a constant reminder of the evil of racism and the horrors that humanity can inflict.

Hopefully, the scars of WW II will never heal. Hopefully, the world will always remember the horrors of that war. Hopefully, we’ll never let it happen again…

Reports are coming out of Ukraine that something eerily similar is taking place in Eastern Ukraine.

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Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city’s Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee “or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated,” reported Ynet News, Israel’s largest news website, and Ukraine’s Donbass news agency.


Disgusting. Despicable. Deplorable.

Could this really be happening in Europe in 2014?  This is supposed to be the civilized West. For people to be forced to register themselves and their belongings simply because of their ethnicity should be an incredible affront to the rest of the free world. We and our leaders should be clamoring for justice. We should be shouting from the rooftops that this type of behavior will never again be acceptable.


This may be the only time I will ever agree with John Kerry who said it perfectly.

Secretary of State John Kerry said the language of the leaflets “is beyond unacceptable” and condemned whomever is responsible.

“In the year 2014, after all of the miles traveled and all of the journey of history, this is not just intolerable — it’s grotesque,” he said. “And any of the people who engage in these kinds of activities — from whatever party or whatever ideology or whatever place they crawl out of — there is no place for that.”

Ukraine unrestThere are conflicting reports about all of this though. Some pro-Moscow locals say that this is simply the Ukrainian government planting false information about the pro-Russia crowd.

The Donetsk Jewish community dismissed this as “a provocation,” which it clearly is. “It’s an obvious provocation designed to get this exact response, going all the way up to Kerry,” says Fyodr Lukyanov, editor of Russia in Global Affairs. “I have no doubt that there is a sizeable community of anti-Semites on both sides of the barricades, but for one of them to do something this stupid—this is done to compromise the pro-Russian groups in the east.” 

Why? The Russian government has been playing up the (real but small) role of fascists and neo-Nazis in the victory of the EuroMaidan in Kiev. The Ukrainian government, utterly powerless to fight off the Russians and their local stooges, have had to rely on other methods, like leaking taped phone calls of allegedly local separatists getting their commands from Moscow. This may be just another tactic to smear the so-called anti-Maidan in the east of Ukraine: you think we’re fascists? 

I can’t be sure which of these accounts is true, but both are heinous.

To use the ghosts of racism from the Nazi oppression as a political tool is terrible. The only thing worse would be if the allegations were true and the pro-Russia forces truly are cracking down on the Jewish community.

We’ll keep an eye on this and hopefully you will too.

It’s up to our generation to end the scourge of racism — wherever it rears its ugly head.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

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