Leaflets ordering Jews to register in east Ukraine city or be deported creating fear. Threat evocative of 1930s. Pro-Russian separatists say order isn’t real. But someone is trying to scare Ukrainian Jews. The question is: Who?

ukraine-mapUPDATED: (Washington, D.C.) — There is a deeply disturbing article in the USA Today that I encourage you to read and share with others. It reports that leaflets are being spread throughout the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk saying that government officials controlled by pro-Russian forces are ordering Jews to register with local authorities and pay a fee, or they could be deported and their assets could be confiscated.

Secretary of State John Kerry today called such actions “intolerable” and “grotesque.” But pro-Russian separatists flatly deny the allegations that they have been distributing leaflets requiring Jews to register. 

The leaflets exist. They’ve been spread all over the city of Donetsk. They’re even printed on official government stationary and they bear the signature of the mayor. But the mayor says he didn’t write it. So who did? Are they a hoax, or official policy?

One thing is clear: someone is targeting the Jewish people of Ukraine, trying to instill fear in them, and trying to get them to leave the country.

The threat left many of the 15,000 Jews of Donetsk ‘shocked and hysterical,’ the chief rabbi of the city told The Daily Beast in an interview on Thursday,” reports the Daily Beast. “He pointed out where one of the leaflets had been left on a tree outside his synagogue on Oktiabskaya Street. In all of his 20-year service in Donetsk, Rabbi Pinhas Vyshedski said, he could never imagine that anything as ‘cynical’ and ‘anti-human’ could ever happen to his community.”

Here’s the latest:

That said, given the long history of virulent anti-Semitism in the region, there is reason to be concerned for the safety of the roughly 200,000 Jewish people in Ukraine.

Consider recent headlines:

As I write about in The Auschwitz Escape, Adolf Hitler made similar legal moves against the Jewish people in the early 1930s, separating them out from the rest of the population. We know where it led — the Final Solution and the gas chambers a few years later. We cannot yet say where the leaders of Donetsk are going with this, but clearly such moves bode ill.

Please pray for the Jewish people in Crimea and throughout Ukraine, for safety and protection and for the Lord to truly bless them amidst this crisis and beyond.

Please also pray for Israeli leaders and other Jewish leaders as they determine how to respond to these developments, should they prove to be true. Is it possible that soon Israel will have to begin airlifting Jews out of Ukraine? If that happens, the Christian community must stand with the Jewish people and help in every way.

Here’s one of the key news reports that set off the international furor:

Jews ordered to register in east Ukraine

By Oren Dorrell, USA Today, April 17, 2014

Jews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to “register” with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia, according to Israeli media.

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.

Donetsk is the site of an “anti-terrorist” operation by the Ukraine government, which has moved military columns into the region to force out militants who are demanding a referendum be held on joining Russia.

The leaflets bore the name of Denis Pushilin, who identified himself as chairman of “Donetsk’s temporary government,” and were distributed near the Donetsk synagogue and other areas, according to the report.

Pushilin acknowledged the flyers were distributed by his organization but he disavowed their content, according to the web site Jews of Kiev, Ynet reported.

Emanuel Shechter, in Israel, told Ynet his friends in Donetsk sent him a copy of the leaflet through social media.

“They told me that masked men were waiting for Jewish people after the Passover eve prayer, handed them the flyer and told them to obey its instructions,” he said.

The leaflet begins, “Dear Ukraine citizens of Jewish nationality,” and states that all people of Jewish descent over 16 years old must report to the Commissioner for Nationalities in the Donetsk Regional Administration building and “register.”

It says the reason is because the leaders of the Jewish community of Ukraine supported Bendery Junta, a reference to Stepan Bandera, the leader of the Ukrainian nationalist movement that fought for Ukrainian independence at the end of World War II, “and oppose the pro-Slavic People’s Republic of Donetsk,” a name adopted by the militant leadership.

The leaflet then described which documents Jews should provide: “ID and passport are required to register your Jewish religion, religious documents of family members, as well as documents establishing the rights to all real estate property that belongs to you, including vehicles.”

Consequences for non-compliance will result in citizenship bein g revoked “and you will be forced outside the country with a confiscation of property.” A registration fee of $ 50 would be required, it said.

Olga Reznikova, 32, a Jewish resident of Donetsk, told Ynet she never experienced anti-Semitism in the city until she saw this leaflet.

“We don’t know if these notifications were distributed by pro-Russian activists or someone else, but it’s serious that it exists,” she said. “The text reminds of the fascists in 1941,” she said referring to the Nazis who occupied Ukraine during World War II.

Michael Salberg, director of the international affairs at the New York City-based Anti-Defamation League, said it’s unclear if the leaflets were issued by the pro-Russian leadership or a splinter group operating within the pro-Russian camp.

But the Russian side has used the sceptre of anti-Semitism in a cynical manner since anti-government protests began in Kiev that resulted in the ousting of Ukraine’s pro-Russian former president Viktor Yanukovych. Russia and its allies in Ukraine issued multiple stories about the the threat posed to Jews by Ukraine’s new pro-Western government in Kiev, Salberg said.

Those stories were based in part on ultra-nationalists who joined the Maidan protests, and the inclusion of the ultra-nationalist Svoboda party in Ukraine’s new interim government. But the threat turned out to be false, he said.

Svoboda’s leadership needs to be monitored, but so far it has refrained from anti-Semitic statements since joining the government, he said. And the prevalence of anti-Semitic acts has not changed since before the Maidan protests, according to the ADL and the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union, which monitors human rights in Ukraine.

Distributing such leaflets is a recruitment tool to appeal to the xenophobic fears of the majority, to enlist them to your cause and focus on a common enemy, the Jews,” Salberg said.

And by targeting Donetsk’s Jews, they also send a message to all the region’s residents, Salberg said.

“The message is a message to all the people that is we’re going to exert our power over you,” he said. “Jews are the default scapegoat throughout history for despots to send a message to the general public: Don’t step out of line.”

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Joel C. Rosenberg’s Blog

Act of War: Ukrainian Officer Shot Dead In Military Base Raid: “Unknown Forces, Fully Equipped and Their Faces Covered”

ukraine-military-called-up
(Military officials have mobilized all active and reserve service members
to defend Ukraine in the event of a Russian Invasion)

While the Monday deadline set forth by Secretary of State John Kerry and President Obama led only to the seizures of financial assets belonging to members of the Russian parliament and other business leaders, the situation in the Ukraine is far from resolved. In fact, if reports streaming in from the former Russian republic are accurate, then things are about to take a turn for the worse.

A Ukrainian serviceman was killed on Tuesday at a Ukrainian base that came under attack in Crimea’s main town Simferopol, the first death on the peninsula from a military clash since the region came under Russian control three weeks ago. As news spread of the death of the serviceman, in an assault on the base by unknown attackers, Ukraine’s pro-Western prime minister denounced it as a “war crime” and called for international talks to prevent an escalation of the conflict.

He said the attackers had told the Ukrainian servicemen that they were under arrest and their documents were confiscated. It was unclear, Seleznyov said, who had staged the assault.

He described the attackers as “unknown forces, fully equipped and their faces covered”.

This is, by no stretch of the imagination, an act of war, or at the very least is being perceived as one by western allies. The probability that these were state-sponsored Russian or Crimean (now one in the same) forces is extremely high. The attackers were fully equipped, suggesting this wasn’t some band of rogue terrorists or rebels. The only full equipped personnel with their faces covered currently operating in Crimea are Russian troops.

russian troops crimea (Armed men believed to be Russian troops patrol the area around a Ukranian military base)

If Ukraine’s prime minister is calling this act a “war crime,” then we can only assume that they now believe they are, in fact, in the midst of a war. And that may well be the case. If not today, then in coming days and weeks. In Crimea, Russia has mobilzed at least 80,000 troops, while the Ukranians have themselves sent 40,000 troops to defend the border in what neighboring Estonia has suggested will lead to an invasion by Russian troops.

The western appointed President of Ukraine has already indicated that his country will never give up Crimea. On the other side of the border, the Russians now believe they have every right to annex Crimea based on a seemingly overwhelming “democratic” vote in support of Russian rule by the people of the small peninsula.

For now, the East vs. West battle has been taking place on the periphery, with no serious repercussions for either side. Essentially, all the United States has done at this point is to seize the financial asset of those individuals who have been marked as supporters of the separatist movement in Crimea – including many Russian politicians.

But what happens when, as Karl Denninger notes, real economic sanctions take place? The one thing that Ukraine has over Crimea is control of electricity and gas resources. They have not yet wielded this weapon, but it makes sense that this could be used to further pressure the acting government of Crimea.

First is that Crimea has nearly no electrical generation capacity on the peninsula.  There are only two routes into there by land for electrical power and both go into Ukraine.

Ukraine has no obligation to leave the power on.  If they turn it off then Crimea is roughly, by my figures, 80% short of its electrical demand requirements.

Second of course are the gas pipeline issues; there appears to be exactly one gas pipeline route into Crimea and it doesn’t come from Russia.

What do you think is going to happen if Ukraine decides to literally “pull the plug” on Crimea?

Is Vladimir Putin just going to stand by as the Crimean grid collapses?

Keep in mind that President Putin has made it clear that he believes there should be no division of Ukraine and Crimea. And the way things are going, with troops massing all over the region, it looks like Putin is prepared to take steps to ensure a united Ukraine. Moreover, we now have Russian state-sponsored television threatening to turn the United States into radioactive ash, an obvious attempt to, once again, scare the crap out of President Obama.

In August of 2013 the United States made similar military movements in and around Syria, only to pull back on threats of invasion after members of Putin’s government warned of the possibility of nuclear counter strikes.

Will Vladimir Putin do the same, and simply pull back his troops and lose face to Obama this time around?

We highly doubt it.

Though it was a Hollywood script, one can’t help but see the parallels between what is happening in Ukraine right now and the opening credits of the movie Red Dawn. Watch the video for yourself and decide, especially after the first minute, where the country (former Russian state of Georgia) in question is different but the circumstances are almost identical. Keep in mind that this movie was originally filmed in 2008 and released in 2012, specifically because of the objections of China, who was originally featured as the invading force:

Yes, it is a Hollywood script. But it seems to be, at least in part, mimicking reality.

Does anyone remember what happened next?

It started with an EMP attack that took down the power grid of the entire West coast, followed by an invasion of the United States.

From a historical perspective, the military and civilian casualties in World War I were 37 million people. That war started from a seemingly insignificant assassination of an archduke from the Austro-Hungarian empire.

But just as we saw in the build up to this single event that changed the world back in the 1910′s, we are now seeing military mobilizations and positioning on a massive scale in Europe, Asia, the middle east. The chess pieces are actively in motion and the end game is quickly approaching.

Will cooler heads prevail?

Maybe. But what if they don’t?

Eventually, someone is going to give the go-ahead and then all bets are off.


SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You