“Fighting the Soviet past” has become quite a bit more than just an idea in nowadays Ukraine following the decommunization state policy introduced in 2015.
In the light of new “counter-Soviet” reforms and reinforcement of nationalistic ideas, the 100th anniversary of October Revolution could not escape the attention of far-right groups highly active in the country. On November 11, members of the National Corps nationalist organization burnt the dummy of Lenin in the center of Kyiv (near the pedestal belonging to Lenin’s monument ruined in 2014). People holding the National Corps flags and a banner saying “Change yourself, change Ukraine” brought a home-made mannequin with Lenin’s photo attached to its face and set it on fire. According to one of the activists, their performance intends to “exorcise the remnants of Soviet ideology and to show that it has no place in the future of our country”. The city’s last remaining monument to Lenin was demolished on May 12 this year.
National Corps is a far-right political party created in 2016 and comprised of several other organizations, namely the Azov battalion. Holding the “Ukro-centrist” positions, they promote Ukrainian independence based on restoration of nuclear power status and speaking against joining NATO and other radical ideas.
Dummy of Lenin
Earlier that day, unknown vandals cemented the Eternal Flame in the capital’s Park of Eternal Glory. The Eternal Flame (literally a permanently burning gas flame) commemorates the soldiers who died in the WWII and is a traditional part of similar installations (memorial complexes etc.) of the Soviet era. The accident was reported by a witness who noticed cement and buckets on the monument. The police are conducting an investigation.
The vandalized eternal Flame
Monument view before vandalization
View of the Park of Eternal Glory nad the Obelisk with Eternal Flame at the foot