“Why are we fighting with the Poles.” Anti-Polish OUN program in the archives of Ukraine

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“The Military Programme” the OUN: the destruction of all Poles who did not agree “voluntarily” leave the Volyn and Galitsii. It was implemented in 1943-1944yy.

The tragic events of “Volyn massacre” 1943-1945 gg. still attract the attention of historians and all people in common. Numerous monographs and documentary publications, which appeared in the last few decades, allow to study in detail the bloody ethnic cleansing [1] that took from 60 to 200 thousand lives of Polish residents of Volyn and Galicia, to describe the process organized by Ukrainian nationalists massacres of Poles at the local level, to name executioners, victims, and saviours of the righteous Poles [2].

This documentary publication is not intended for spreading “Volyn massacre”, covering 1943-1945 years. Compilers set ourselves the modest goal – to acquaint the people with the key documents of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), the organization formulated a program of the “Polish question”.

All documents included in the collection are stored in the Ukrainian archives and already introduced in the scientific revolution Ukrainian researchers; at the same time, however, the published documents remain unknown not only to a wider audience, but also to many historians. It determines the relevance of this documentary publication.

1 – The first one included in publication of the documents identified in the collections of the State Archive of the Lviv region research fellow at the Center for Liberation Movement (Centre of Researching the liberation movement) by Michael Posivnych and published them in 2003 [3].

Number 1. Brochure of Regional executive OUN “Why are we fighting with the Poles.”

The document is an agitation and propaganda pamphlet “Why are we fighting with the Poles”, published by the OUN Provincial executive at the beginning of 1931 to the reasonable assumption M. Posivnych, author of the brochure was either ideological referent OUN Regional executive of Stepan Lenkavsky or organizational referent Stepan Ohrimovich. In any case, the brochure reflect the opinions of the OUN leadership; excerpts from it subsequently published in other publications Regional ekzekutivy [4].

As the official publication of the OUN was programmatic in nature and they were guided by the ordinary members of the organization [5], there is no doubt that the booklet “Why are we fighting with the Poles” influenced the growing of hatred against the Poles.

This national hatred guided by OUN members during the so-called “anti-colonialist” action in the second half of the 30s. As part of this campaign in the spring of 1937 the Poles colony near Dmitrov was ordered to leave their homes unless they die. After the frightened people fled their homes were burned. [6]

It was the prototype of the future “Volyn Massacre”; revealing that the action was initiated regional OUN conductor Ivan Klimov (alias “Legend”), then who made a considerable contribution to the struggle of OUN with “national enemies” – Jews and Poles [7].

2 – The second offer for our readers is a document which was prepared by the middle of 1938, “The Military Doctrine of the Ukrainian nationalists.” A copy of this very important document, previously known only from a biased Short Emigrant publications [8], identified in the Archives of the OUN in Kyiv Associate Professor of Modern and Contemporary History of the Ukrainian Catholic University of Ukraine (Lviv), Alexander Zaitsev.

Number 2. From the “Military Doctrine of Ukrainian nationalists” (“national uprising” section).

In 2013, Zaitsev published a key piece “Military Doctrine” – “national uprising” section [9]. The author of “Military Doctrine” – a member of the OUN Regional executive assistant military training Kolodzinsky Michael, who wrote this voluminous work (200 pages of typewritten text) at the request of the referent in ideology Jaroslav Stetsko for publication in one of the organization of the official journals [10].

3 – “The Military Doctrine of Ukrainian Nationalists” M. Kolodzinskogo was partially published in Cracow in 1940 [11]; there is no doubt that it has examined the entire leadership of the OUN. One gets the impression that the work was also known Kolodzinski and supports OUN Nazi secret services.

Number 3. From the manual “Combating and OUN activities during the war” (see “Notes on the early days of the organization of public life”).

Confirmation of the correctness of this assumption is the task entrusted to the leadership of the OUN before the invasion of Poland. August 15, 1939 of the Abwehr members of the OUN was established commando unit, codenamed «Bergbauernhilfe». The total number of units was approximately 600 people, which was headed by a member of the OUN General Colonel Roman Sushko. [12]

The task unit was to be the organization of anti-Polish uprising in western Ukraine and cleansing the territory of “undesirable elements.” According to the testimony of the chief of the 2nd (sabotage) Department of the Abwehr E. von Lahousen at a meeting of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, September 12, 1939 the indication was made the head of the Abwehr, Admiral Canaris, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Third Reich J. von Ribbentrop.

“The sense of order or instruction, – told Lahousen – was that it was necessary to contact the Ukrainian nationalists, which intelligence had already corresponding contact in the military, in order to bring the rebel movement in Poland, which would have the effect of extermination of the Polish and Jews in Poland. This was discussed Ribbentrop personally Canaris. When saying “Poles”, we mean the intelligence and those circles which act as carriers of national resistance “[13]

As you can see, the job that the Nazi leadership set itself formed from a division of OUN, to coincide with the plans set forth in the “Military Doctrine” by Kolodzinski. According beyond Ukrainian nationalist reasons, this plan has not been brought to life [14]; but in spite of this already in September 1939 Ukrainian nationalists started the massacres of Polish military, political activists and rural teachers.

The village Slovyatin local Ukrainian nationalists destroyed the majority of Poles living in rural areas and in nine nearby towns cut 129 Polish citizens. It is significant that these murders occurred exactly where OUN succeeded in creating a clandestine armed groups [15].

Ideas formulated by  Kolodzinski can be found in the agitation and propaganda, and in the internal regulations of the OUN – such as, for example, dating from May 1941 instruction “Fight and activities of the OUN during the war.” This document is included in the thematic publication by the third number.

One of the copies of the statement “The struggle and the activities of OUN during the war” found in the Central State Archives of higher authorities of Ukraine by historian Ivan Patrilyak and published them in the first part of “Ukrainian historical journal,” and then, in 2006 – fully in the collection documents “OUN in 1941” [16]. Another copy of the statement was subsequently found in the collections of Russian State Archive of Socio-Political History. [17]

In contrast to the “Military Doctrine of Ukrainian Nationalists” guide “Fighting and OUN activities” was widely known not only to the top management of the OUN, but also middle managers, carried out underground work in the territory of Western Ukraine.

On the eve of the German attack on the Soviet Union OUN wire found it necessary to develop a document that contains instructions on how to organize a revolt in the rear of the Soviet troops, and how to build on the occupied territories, “the Ukrainian statehood.” Not bypassed attention and were the fight against “hostile” ethnic minorities.

The German invasion of the Soviet Union gave the Ukrainian nationalists the opportunity to proceed with the plans contained in the manual “Combating and OUN activities during the war.” Although the main victim of Ukrainian nationalists in the summer of 1941 began living in Western Ukraine the Jews [18], the Poles have also been subjected to violent attacks.

In some localities the Poles were treated as Jews were forced to wear in white bandages. [19] However, the policy pursued by the German occupation authorities prevented the OUN to implement its plans in full; Ukrainian nationalists were soon literally “push out” of their former allies in hiding. [20]

4 – The fourth document, proposed to our readers, is stored in the State archive branch of the Ukrainian Security Service and is a unique testimony of the autumn of 1942, held in Lviv first military conference OUN (B).

Number 4. Message former regional military assistant OUN-West L. Pavlishin the development of OUN military program in late 1942

Its author – one of the conference participants, the regional military assistant OUN-West Pavlishin Luca, who had gone in 1944 to cooperate with the NKVD under the pseudonym “Yaroslav” [21]. At the end of November 1944 it had written a note detailing how of the participants of the first conference of military OUN (B), and the content developed on the basis of the military program of the conference. For the first time the document has been partially published in 2005 in the collection of documents “The Poles and Ukrainians between two totalitarian systems” [22].

“Military Programme” developed by the end of 1942 an officer for special assignments for the military referent Ivan Klimov (alias “Legend”), edge military referent OUN-West Pavlishin Luca (alias “Vovk”) and edge military referent OUN-North Vasily Ivahivym (nickname “Catfish”) has an obvious connection to the ideological “Military doctrine” by M. Kolodzinskogo. In addition to the visionary imaginations of the collapse of the USSR, the military program contains practical proposals for a radical solution of the problem of “national minorities”.

Implementation of the “national points” military program had to be confined to the “outbreak of hostilities for independence.” Apparently, originally it was a fairly distant time, however, the rapid change in the situation in Volyn mixed all calculations. Once, in March – early April 1943, in the formation of the OUN (B) left several thousand troops Ukrainian “auxiliary police”, the boundary conductor Dmitry Klyachkovsky (alias “Klim Savur”) began to implement the “military program.”

* This was the beginning, “Volyn Massacre” [23].

The published documents clearly dismantled the evolution of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists approaches to solving the “Polish question”. Starting with incitement to national hatred of the Poles (brochure, “How and what we are fighting with the Poles,” 1931), the OUN leadership by 1938 formulated the “Military Doctrine of Ukrainian Nationalists”, provided for in the framework of the organization of an armed uprising attacks on the Polish population of the Western Ukraine with a view to his expulsion. “Military Doctrine” also included the destruction of the Polish economy and involvement in anti-Polish statements of the broad masses of the Ukrainian peasantry.

However, the attempt to implement this program in September 1939, was unsuccessful. Developed in May 1941 manual “Combating and OUN activities during the war” in the OUN made plans to address “the Polish question” some adjustments: the part of the Polish villagers planned not to expel Western lands and forcibly assimilate.

At the same time planned murder “Polish activists”. However, this plan could not be realized in summer 1941. Finally, at the end of 1942 it was formulated “military program” OUN, which provided for the destruction of all Poles who did not agree “voluntarily” leave the territory of Volyn and Galicia. This program was implemented in 1943-1944.

Thus occurred the bloody ethnic cleansing can be regarded as pre-planned criminal action OUN leadership, to realize that it was possible only on the third attempt.

All included in the thematic publication of the documents are in the original language. Contrary to usual practice, the images are published only some of the documents included in the publication. This is due to the fact that to obtain copies of these documents from Ukrainian archives failed; text documents in this case are played by Ukrainian historians scientific publications.

The publication was prepared by A.R. Dyukov


[1] О термине см.: Манн М. Темная сторона демократиии. Объяснение этнических чисток / Пер. с англ. под ред. В. Малахова. М., 2006.

[2] Dzieje Komitetu Ziem Wschodnich na tle losów ludności polskich Kresów w latach 1943-1947, t. 2, Dokumenty i materiały zgromadzone przez działaczy i członków KZW / Oprac. L. Kulińska. Kraków, 2001; Eksterminacja narodu polskiego i Kościoła rzymskokatolickiego przez ukraińskich nacjonalistów w Małopolsce wschodniej w latach 1939-1945: materiały źródłowe / Oprac. J. Wołczański. Kraków, 2005-2006. Cz. 1-2; Kulińska L. Antypolska akcja nacjonalistów ukraińskich w Małopolsce Wschodniej i na Wołyniu w świetle dokumentów Rady Głównej Opiekuńczej 1943-1944. Kraków, 2003; Ільюшин І. УПА і АК. Протистояння в Західній Україні (1939-1945 рр.). Київ, 2009; Motyka G. Od rzezi wołyńskiej do Akcji „Wisła”. Konflikt polsko-ukraiński 1943-1947. Kraków, 2011; Antypolska akcja nacjonalistów ukraińskich w Małopolsce Wschodniej i na Wołyniu w świetle dokumentów Rady Głównej Opiekuńczej 1943-1944: zestawienie ofiar / Pod red. L. Kulińskiej, A. Rolińskiego. Kraków, 2012; Украинские националистические организации в годы Второй мировой войны. Документы / Под ред. А.Н. Артизова. М., 2012. Т. 1–2; Баканов А.И. «Ни кацапа, ни жида, ни ляха». Национальный вопрос в идеологии Организации украинских националистов. М., 2014; Kulińska L., Partacz Cz. Zbrodnie nacjonalistów ukraińskich na Polakach w latach 1939-1945. Warszawa, 2015, и др.

[3] Посiвнич М. Видання крайовоï екзекутиви ОУН 1931 р. // Украïнський визвольний рух. Львiв, 2003. Зошит 2. С. 7–13.

[4] Там же. С. 8.

[5] Курило Т., Химка I. Як ОУН ставилася до євреїв? Роздуми над книжкою Володимира В’ятровича // Украïна модерна. 2008. № 2. С. 255.

[6] Казанiвський Б. Шляхом «Леґенди». Спомини. Лондон, 1975. С. 23–25, 29.

[7] Баканов А.И. «Ни кацапа, ни жида, ни ляха». С. 123.

[8] Колодзінський М. Украïнська воєнна доктрина. Ч. 1. Торонто, 1957.

[9] Колодзінський М. Націоналістичне повстання (розділ із праці «Воєнна доктрина українських націоналістів»). Публікація та коментарі О. Зайцева // Україна модерна. 2013. № 20. С. 257–295.

[10] Зайцев О. Воєнна доктрина Михайла Колодзінського // Україна модерна. 2013. № 20. С. 248.

[11] Зайцев О. Воєнна доктрина Михайла Колодзінського. С. 245.

[12] Органiзацiя украïнських нацiоналiстiв i Украïнська повстаньска армiя: Фаховий висновок робочоï групи iсторикiв при урядовiй комiciï з вивчення дiятельностi ОУН i УПА. Киïв, 2005. С. 6.

Интересно, что по данным советских органов госбезопасности уже в 1940 г. Р. Сушко, оставаясь одним из руководителей мельниковской ОУН, стал официальным сотрудником подразделения германской военной разведки «Абверштелле Краков», где отвечал за вербовку агентуры из числа украинских националистов. См.: Структура и деятельность органов германской разведки в годы Второй мировой войны / Архив Главного управления Службы Безопасности Украины в Автономной Республике Крым; Сост. А.В. Валякин, А.А. Кохан. Симферополь, 2011. С. 40.

[13] Нюрнбергский процесс: Сборник материалов. М., 1990. Т. 4. С. 181.

[14] Подробности см.: Дюков А.Р. Почему нацистам не удалось создать «украинское государство»: Абвер, украинские националисты и начало Второй мировой. URL: https://lenta.ru/articles/2015/09/01/puppet/ .

[15] Баканов А.И. «Ни кацапа, ни жида, ни ляха». С. 124–125.

[16] ОУН в 1941 роци: Документи. Киïв, 2006. Ч. 1. С. 94–105.

[17] См.: Украинские националистические организации в годы Второй мировой войны. Документы / Под ред. А.Н. Артизова. М., 2012. Т. 1 (внешняя ссылка).

[18] Подробнее см.: Berkhoff K.C., Carynnyk M. The Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and its Attitude toward Germans and Jews: Yaroslav Stets’ko’s 1941 Zhyttiepis // Harvard Ukrainian Studies. 1999. № 3–4; Дюков А.Р. Второстепенный враг. ОУН, УПА и решение «еврейского вопроса». М., 2009; Круглов А. Погромы в Восточной Галиции летом 1941 г.: организаторы, участники, масштабы и последствия // Война на уничтожение: Нацистская политика геноцида на территории Восточной Европы: Материалы международной научной конференции (Москва, 26–28 апреля 2010 года) М., 2010. С. 324–341; Himka J.P. The Lviv Pogrom of 1941: The Germans, Ukrainian Nationalists, and the Carnival Crowd // Canadian Slavonic Paper. 2011. № 2–4. P. 209–243; Баканов А.И. «Ни кацапа, ни жида, ни ляха». С. 176–227.

[19] Дюков А.Р. «Польский вопрос» в планах ОУН(Б): От насильственной ассимиляции к этническим чисткам // Забытый геноцид. «Волынская резня» 1943–1944 годов: сборник документов и исследований. М., 2008. С. 75–77.

[20] Там же. С. 77–78.

[21] Данные, позволяющие идентифицировать «Ярослава» как Л. Павлишина см.: ГДА СБУ. Ф. 13. Д. 372. Т. 5. С. 443.

[22] Поляки i украïнцi мiж двома тоталiними системами, 1942–1945. Варшава; Киïв, 2005. Ч. 1. С. 204–212.

[23] Подробнее см.: Дюков А.Р. «Польский вопрос» в планах ОУН(Б). С. 83–87.


Брошюра Краевой экзекутивы ОУН «Как и за что мы боремся с поляками».

№ 1. Брошюра Краевой экзекутивы ОУН «Как и за что мы боремся с поляками». 1931 г.

Государственный архив Львовской области

Ф. 121. Оп. 3. Д. 798. Л. 152–159.

Из «Военной доктрины украинских националистов» (раздел «Национальное восстание»).

№ 2. Из «Военной доктрины украинских националистов» (раздел «Национальное восстание»). 1938 г

Архив ОУН в Киеве

Ф. 1. Оп. 2. Д. 466. Л. 91–139.

Из инструкции «Борьба и деятельность ОУН во время войны» (раздел «Указания на первые дни организации государственной жизни»), 1941 г.

№ 3. Из инструкции «Борьба и деятельность ОУН во время войны» (раздел «Указания на первые дни организации государственной жизни»). 1941 г.

Государственный отраслевой архив Службы безопасности Украины

Ф. 13. Д. 376. Т. 6. Л. 294–302.

Сообщение бывшего краевого военного референта ОУН-Запад Л. Павлишина о разработке военной программы ОУН в конце 1942 г.

№ 4. Сообщение бывшего краевого военного референта ОУН-Запад Л. Павлишина о разработке военной программы ОУН в конце 1942 г.

Отраслевой государственный архив Службы безопасности Украины

Ф. 13. Д. 372. Т. 5. Л. 21–38.




  1. Tworzenie pierwszych oddziałów samoobrony odbywało się spontanicznie. Organizowali je lokalni przywódcy społeczności polskiej. Należy sądzić, że pojawiły się one pod koniec 1942 r. lub na przełomie 1942 i 1943 r. Ich działalność początkowo sprowadzała się do organizowania przez ludność wsi i miasteczek punktów obserwacyjnych, wystawiania straży i patrolowania najbliższej okolicy. Członkowie samoobrony ostrzegali miejscową ludność polską o pojawieniu się nieznanych oddziałów zbrojnych. Część posterunków, wart i patroli działała tylko wieczorem i w nocy, przy czym rzadko uzbrojone były w broń palną.

  2. Trzeba podkreślić, że wczesną wiosną 1943 r. nie wszyscy Polacy na Wołyniu mieli poczucie zagrożenia. Wielu z nich było przekonanych, że antypolskie wystąpienia mają jedynie ograniczony zasięg, tym bardziej, że liczne wsie polskie miały dobre stosunki z okoliczną ludnością ukraińską. Zdarzały się także przypadki, że Ukraińcy uspokajali polskich sąsiadów, twierdząc, że nic im nie grozi. Sądzono także, że możliwa jest wspólna walka Polaków i Ukraińców z Niemcami. Niektórzy historycy polscy sądzą, że pogłoski takie były celowo rozgłaszane przez Ukraińców i miały na celu uspokojenie ludności polskiej.

  3. Występujemy przeciwko Ukraińcom tylko we własnej samoobronie, tylko wtedy, kiedy jesteśmy przez nich z ich własnej woli lub na skutek podszeptów wspólnych naszych wrogów atakowani”.
    Jak widać, Delegat Rządu nawet wtedy nie wyzbył się złudzeń, co do rzeczywistej postawy ludności ukraińskiej wobec Polaków. Nic nie wiadomo, aby ta odezwa odniosła jakiś dostrzegalny skutek.

  4. Latem 1943 r. zorganizowany oddział samoobrony rozrósł się do czterech kompanii (po 120 ludzi) i oddziału zwiadu konnego liczącego 40 jeźdźców. Wkrótce samoobrona liczyła około tysiąca uzbrojonych i przeszkolonych żołnierzy. Byli oni przez cały czas skoszarowani i korzystali z kuchni polowej. W Przebrażu powstała rusznikarnia, w której produkowano pistolety maszynowe Sten i naprawiano uszkodzoną broń. Zdobywano ją w różny sposób, w tym kupując „nielegalnie” od żołnierzy niemieckich i węgierskich. Kolonię opasano zasiekami z drutu kolczastego, „bunkrami” z ziemi, sosnowych bali i rowami strzeleckimi.

  5. Płytka patriotyczne ekspresjonizm forsowane w tych marszach, w rzeczywistości odzwierciedla sloganesque zachowanie kibiców piłkarskich ‘, którego efekt wizualny stał się tak imponujące, że materiał z cech Niepodległości marca w filmie Hollywood na neonazistów.

  6. Dla coraz większej liczby młodych ludzi wyznających wokalnych nacjonalistyczne i ksenofobiczne poglądy mogłyby pociągnąć politykę w kraju i całego regionu, nawet dalej w dół nieliberalne ścieżce. Mówi się, że historia się powtarza, najpierw jako tragedia, a potem jako farsa, ale to jednak potężny i potencjalnie niebezpieczne (jeśli nadużywany) instrumentem kucie przyszłość.

  7. Jednocześnie, wzrost nastrojów nacjonalistycznych można zaobserwować wśród młodego pokolenia. Do dużej mierze jest to wynikiem państwowych “polityki historycznej” minionej dekady.

  8. W Polsce, historia liczy. To może być inaczej w kraju, który został tak dotknięty przez wydarzenia podstawowych i procesów w ciągu ostatnich dwóch stuleci w Europie. Bardziej, państwo odgrywa aktywną rolę w promowaniu narracji historycznej i instytucjonalizacji obchody.

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