fredag den 21. marts 2014

Verdens PoesiDag kl. 15.00 Odense Centralbibliotek

Anne Skamstrup Heiberg har lavet de flotte tegninger til mine korte tekster om MADIBA

I samarbejde med Odense Centralbibliotek markerer Fynske Forfattere Verdens Poesidag med et arrangement på hovedbiblioteket.
I år er temaet ord og billeder, og digterne får hjælp fra grafikere fra Fyns Grafiske Værksted.

Ni digtere og ni grafikere er blevet sat fuldstændig tilfældigt sammen parvis som en ”blind date” mellem en digter og en grafiker. De kunstnerpar, der er opstået, har fået til opgave at frembringe et eller flere værker, der præsenteres, når vi den 21. marts markerer Verdens Poesidag. Det er helt op til de enkelte par, hvordan de vil løse opgaven; men ord og billede skal på en eller anden måde arbejde sammen. Deltagerne er:
Bjarne Kim Pedersen, digter & Anne S. Heiberg, grafiker
Per Nielsen, digter & Line Eskestad, grafiker
Jørgen Wassilefsky, digter & Marianne Lindberg Jepsen, grafiker
Anders Vægter Nielsen, digter & Ingrid Duch, grafiker
Poul G. Exner, digter & Kirsten Panduro, grafiker
Cindy Lynn Brown, digter & Wieslaw Dabrowski, grafiker
Inga Mollerup, digter & Jens Bohr, grafiker
Iben Fogh Staal, digter & Kurt Dupont Larsen
Johanna Thielst, digter & Elmar Mønster, grafiker

Vi fejrer Verdens Poesidag på Odense Centralbibliotek med en poetisk fernisering den 21. marts kl. 15, hvor projektet præsenteres.
Udstillingen vil herefter kunne ses på Odense Centralbibliotek frem til slutningen af april.  

fredag den 14. marts 2014

Til en russisk soldat/ To a Russian soldier



med kærlig hilsen
må jeg sætte blomster i
din kalashnikov


with love
may I put flowers in
your kalashnikov

(Bjarne Kim Pedersen)

onsdag den 5. marts 2014

JEWS In Ukraine

Open letter of Ukrainian Jews to Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin.
Open letter of Ukrainian Jews to Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin.
05.03.2014Jews and Society
To the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin
Mr. President!
We are Jewish citizens of Ukraine: businessmen, managers, public figures, scientists and scholars, artists and musicians. We are addressing you on behalf of the multi-national people of Ukraine, Ukraine's national minorities, and on behalf of the Jewish community.
You have stated that Russia wants to protect the rights of the Russian-speaking citizens of the Crimea and all of Ukraine and that these rights have been flouted by the current Ukrainian government. Historically, Ukrainian Jews are also mostly Russian-speaking. Thus, our opinion on what is happening carries no less weight than the opinion of those who advise and inform you.
We do not believe that you are easy to fool. You consciously pick and choose lies and slander from the massive amount of information about Ukraine. And you know very well that Victor Yanukovich's statement concerning the time after the latest treaty had been signed that “...Kyiv is full of armed people who have begun to trash buildings, places of worship, churches. Innocent people have begun to suffer. People have simply been robbed and killed in the street...” are lies, from the first word to the very last.
The Russian-speaking citizens of Ukraine are not being humiliated or discriminated against, their civil rights have not been limited. Meanderings about “forced Ukrainization” and “bans on the Russian language” that have been so common in Russian media are on the heads of those who invented them. Your certainty of the growth of anti-Semitism in Ukraine also does not correspond to the actual facts. It seems you have confused Ukraine with Russia, where Jewish organizations have noticed growth in anti-Semitic tendencies last year.
Right now, after Ukraine has survived a difficult political crisis, many of us have wound up on different sides of the barricades. The Jews of Ukraine, as all ethnic groups, are not absolutely unified in their opinion towards what is happening in the country. But we live in a democratic country and can afford a difference of opinion.
They have tried to scare us (and are continuing their attempts) with “Bandera followers” and “Fascists” attempting to wrest away the helm of Ukrainian society, with imminent Jewish progroms. Yes, we are well aware that the political opposition and the forces of social protests who have secured changes for the better are made up of different groups. They include nationalistic groups, but even the most marginal do not dare show anti-Semitism or other xenophobic behavior. And we certainly know that our very few nationalists are well-controlled by civil society and the new Ukrainian government – which is more than can be said for the Russian neo-Nazis, who are encouraged by your security services.
We have a great mutual understanding with the new government, and a partnership is in the works. There are quite a few national minority representatives in the Cabinet of Ministers: the Minister of Internal Affairs is Armenian, the Vice Prime Minister is a Jew, two ministers are Russian. The newly-appointed governors of Ukraine's region are also not exclusively Ukrainian.
Unfortunately, we must admit that in recent days stability in our country has been threatened. And this threat is coming from the Russian government, namely – from you personally. It is your policy of inciting separatism and crude pressure placed on Ukraine that threatens us and all Ukrainian people, including those who live in Crimea and the Ukrainian South-East. South-eastern Ukrainians will soon see that for themselves.
Vladimir Vladimirovich, we highly value your concern about the safety and rights of Ukrainian national minorities. But we do not wish to be “defended” by sundering Ukraine and annexing its territory. We decisively call for you not to intervene in internal Ukrainian affairs, to return the Russian armed forces to their normal fixed peacetime location, and to stop encouraging pro-Russian separatism.
Vladimir Vladimirovich, we are quite capable of protecting our rights in a constructive dialogue and in cooperation with the government and civil society of a sovereign, democratic, and united Ukraine. We strongly urge you not to destabilize the situation in our country and to stop your attempts of delegitimizing the new Ukrainian government.
Josef Zisels Chairman of the Association of Jewish Communities and Organizations of Ukraine (VAAD) Ukraine, Executive Vice President of the Congress of National Communities of Ukraine
Alexander Suslensky D.Sc., Vice President of the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine, businessman
Andrei Adamovsky First Vice President of the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine, member of the “Hillel” Jewish Student organization Observation Council (citizen of Russia)
Evgen Chervonenko Vice President of the European Jewish Congress, businessman
Rabbi Alex Dukhovny Head Rabbi of the Ukrainian Progressive Judaism communities
Rabbi Reuven Stamov Head Rabbi of the Ukrainian Traditional Judaism communities
Alexander Paskhaver Member of the VAAD Ukraine Coordation Council, economist
Leonid Finberg Director of the NaUKMA Center for the Studies of History and Culture of Eastern European Jewry, VAAD Ukraine Vice Chairman
Anatoliy Podolsky Director of the Ukrainian Center for Holocaust Studies, Vice Chairman of VAAD Ukraine
Igor Kuperberg Chairman of the Zionist Federation of Ukraine, Vice Chairman of VAAD Ukraine
Semen Belman Vice President of the Jewish Council of Ukraine, President of the Chernigiv Jewish Community
Alexander Gaidar Leader of the Union of Ukrainian Progressive Judaism Religious Communities
Vyacheslav Likhachev CNCU Chief expert in monitoring and analysing xenophobia and anti-Semitism, member of the VAAD Ukraine Coordination Council(citizen of Russia and Israel)
Michael Gold Editor-in-chief of the VAAD Ukraine newspaper “Hadashot”
Galina Haraz Engineer (citizen of Ukraine and Israel)
Igor Turov PhD in history, Director of the Jewish Studies Certificate Program of VAAD Ukraine, VAAD Ukraine Presidium member
Diana Gold VAAD Ukraine Presidium member
Alexander Roitburg Artist
Evgen Greben Director of the “Maccabi” Jewish Cultural and Sports Society (Kyiv)
Grigoriy Pickman “B'nei B'rith Leopolis” President
Igor Kerez VAAD Ukraine Trustee Board member, businessman
Artem Fedorchuk, Director of the Intarnationsl Centar on Jewish Education and Field Studies
(Signatures still being collected)
March 4, 2014

tirsdag den 4. marts 2014

Some Clarifications Regarding Ukraine

MARCH 3, 20141:08 AM

Some Clarifications Regarding Ukraine

By Capt Stephen L. Szyszka (Ret.)
With the recent developments in Ukraine, I feel obligated to take a new approach. Certain disinformation, repeated by many media outlets and intellectuals (some would say, provocateurs) in the West, like Stephen Cohen of Princeton, has been raging for months, and now it is in full attack mode. I will repeat certain of these assertions, and then provide a clarification of the same.
Ukrainian soldiers (left) and unidentified gunmen (right) at the gate of a Crimean infantry base. Photo: Darko Vojinovic/AP
The inaccurate assertions below are repeated by certain Western media outlets and intellectuals, and I feel obligated to provide clarifications.
  1. Assertion: The new government in Ukraine is illegitimate, and Yanukovych is still the duly-elected president. The only way forward is to accept the agreement between Yanukovich and opposition political leaders of Febuary 21st as witnessed by three European Foreign Ministers which established a power-sharing arrangement keeping Yanukovych in power through December.

    Clarification: Yanukovych’s security forces were executing a plan in which hired Russian snipers assassinated dozens of peaceful protesters during the negotiation of this agreement in the single greatest day of carnage since the protests began. Only after this did some more extreme faction of the protesters, a tiny minority, armed in order to defend themselves. Due to Yanukovych’s bad-faith negotiation, the agreement to which they refer is meaningless. Additionally, the agreement required Yanukovych to sign the Parliament’s restoration of the 2004 Constitution within a reasonable time frame, which he did not. Subsequently, the Parliament, in full complement (no ruling party members were excluded and in fact many of them voted with the opposition), voted to impeach Yanukovych, and subsequently ordered his arrest. Hence, Yanukovych is not the president, he is a fugitive from justice.
  2. Assertion: Yanukovych did not flee his office. He was chased out by armed extremists who were shooting at him and his family.

    Clarification: this is an outright lie. There is no evidence of such shootings.
  3. Assertion: The protesters/perpetrators of the coup are neonazi fascists who intend to create an ethnically pure Ukrainian state, specifically targeting Russians for discrimination and repression.

    Clarification: The protesters consist of Ukrainians, Russians, Georgians, Armenians, Orthodox, Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Muslim religious leaders. Many of these groups are represented in the new government, as well. Even the Moscow-controlled faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate are calling out these lies in Russian and Eastern Ukrainian media. No incidents of Ukrainians infringing on the rights of any ethnic or religious minority have been documented.
  4. Assertion: Crimea is historically Russian land, importunely gifted to Ukraine by Khrushchev, that is so ingrained in Russian DNA that it must be returned to Russia, as are the Eastern portions of Ukraine, for that matter.

    : At best, this is selective history. At worst, it is ongoing disinformation. Crimea was annexed into the Russian Empire in the 17th century by Catherine the Great. Prior to this annexation, Crimea was often conquered and reconquered, by Asian Hordes in the first millennium, by the Ottomans, Cossacks, and others over the years. So if history goes back only to 1700, those Russian chauvinists who claim Crimea is “ancient Russian land” are correct. If one goes back to 1960, Ukrainians can make the same claim. If one goes back to A.D. 1000, Ukraine’s precursor state centered in Kyiv once again has the legitimate claim. If one goes to 1200, Mongolia has that right, so those Russians who claim indignantly that this is their land from time immemorial are not presenting an accurate picture of history. Those who can arguably claim the greatest right to Crimea are the Muslim Tatars who had lived there since that first millennium, until forcibly expatriated by Russian/Soviet policy. Only recently have they been allowed to return to their ancient homeland, and although a minority of ~14% in Crimea, that have made it clear that they want to live in a democratic Ukraine and not in an authoritarian Russia. As for the Russians in Eastern Ukraine, they are only there because the Holodomor (Famine-Genocide) of the 1930s starved to death millions of Ukrainians, and Russians were sent their to repopulate the land and work the farms.
  5. Assertion: Extremists started the violence on the maidan, and the government showed great restraint until forced into the military option.

    : There is ample evidence and testimony that the protesters were peaceful and unarmed from November through the middle of January. Throughout, the government attempted to incite them to violence through the use of hired titushky thugs, who infiltrated the Maidan, stirring up trouble, giving the militia an excuse to employ force. There is video evidence and testimony of these people being rounded up, hired, conspiring with the Berkut special forces, and then slipping from one side of the barricades to the other, stirring up violence. These same thugs hired by the mayor of Kharkiv, Kenes, were responsible for multiple kidnappings and beatings, maiming and deaths of not only protesters, but also medical personnel and journalists. Every time the government negotiated with the opposition, force was employed against the protesters, testifying to Yanukovych’s lack of good faith. The January 18th assassinations were the final straw.
  6. Assertion: Russian forces in Crimea are only defending Russian interests and citizens against the provocations of an illegal government installed in Kyiv.

    Clarification: There is zero evidence of such provocations. As previously in Kyiv, armed, well-organized, unmarked militiamen appeared and surrounded a number of key facilities (communications nodes, police facilities, government buildings) and set up roadblocks restricting movement in Crimea without provocation. They forbade duly-elected members of the Crimean parliament from entering the building, and only certain members were allowed in. Subsequently, with only 42 of 100 parliament members allowed in the chamber, they elected a new speaker (illegal, since he is a Russian citizen, not Ukrainian) and requested that Russia send in forces to protect them. It has been demonstrated that these unmarked lads are Russians, as one of them let it slip to an interviewer, whereas the bulk of them refuse to answer. They prohibit journalists from access and doing their job. If they are doing such honorable work, why are they afraid of openness? The phone links to Ukraine are blocked. The only TV broadcasts permitted are those originating in Russia, and they-the Russia-controlled media-are fueling this hysteria. Further, showing pro-Russia protests in Crimea is inaccurate, since those who would protest against Russian intervention are beaten and forced to remain indoors. To reiterate, there are not any western provocateurs in Crimea, and none have been shown to be there.
  7. Assertion: This coup is hostile to Russian citizens, ethnic Russians, and Russian-speakers. The evidence they cite here is the toppling of Lenin statues all over the country, and the banning of the Russian language by Parliament.

    Clarification: Lenin brought about the most vile, destructive and repressive empire in recorded history and ought not be revered by anybody, most specifically the Russian people. His actions resulted in their subjugation for 70 years, and it is high time to topple all of these statues. Regardless, toppling a statue of Lenin is not anti-Russian, it is Anti-Soviet Union and should be welcomed by all post-Soviet nations. Secondly, there is no such law banning the Russian language in Ukraine.  What the Parliament did is repeal a law that had elevated the Russian language in Ukraine to the level of a state language. This in no way limits people’s rights to function using that language. Newspapers, radio and TV broadcasts, schools, shops, all can and likely will continue functioning in Russian. People can and will continue speaking Russian if that is their preferred language.

Finally, there are many instances and examples of Russian people (citizens, ethnics, speakers, etc.) in Ukraine’s east, in Russia, and around the world, who are appalled at Putin’s adventurism, who stand for a free and democratic Ukraine with whom Russia should have normal “equal-partner” relations. And in Russia, those who dare voice their support for a free Ukraine are jailed, whilst others are instructed by their employers to go protest in support of the occupation, and show no passion for the cause. It is not the Russian people writ large who are in favor of this invasion. It is only the chauvinistic minority who cling to outdated stereotypes, and refuse to acknowledge the realities of today. This invasion is not supported by the Russian people. It is a fabrication of the cynical Russian leadership.