Protesters look at a fire in the trade union building in Odessa May 2, 2014. (Reuters/Yevgeny Volokin)
Cities in eastern and southern Ukraine have become battlefields as the junta in Kiev has unleashed military and paramilitary thugs on the people of those regions.
At the same time the media, with its critical role in shaping public opinion, has also become one of the principal theaters in this ongoing conflict, with Western propaganda being one of the most potent weapons.
Seventy-three years ago this October, the infamous “Odessa Massacre” of 1941, which killed more than 30,000 Jews in the Ukrainian port city and surrounding areas, was carried out by Romanian fascist troops in collaboration with their Nazi patrons and allies. The pogrom, merely one of many against Jews and other minorities in Ukraine, is a stark historical reminder to the people of Odessa (and all those throughout the former Soviet Union who fought against fascism during the war) of the depravity, inhumanity, and barbarism of Nazis and their collaborators.
And now, 73 years later, Odessa is the scene of yet another horrific war crime carried out by fascists against innocent civilians. The fire and massacre at the Trade Unions building which killed dozens of anti-fascist activists and employees in the building, will serve as a painful testimony to the ongoing struggle against the junta in Kiev and its neo-Nazi paramilitary foot soldiers. This obvious war crime, along with a number of others committed by the Right Sector and other ultra-nationalist (read fascist) militias, should undoubtedly be the issue making headlines around the world.
And yet, it seems that somehow the slaughter of innocents, and the issue of criminal accountability for those who ordered and carried out the massacre, has been completely and systematically distorted and/or omitted from the Western narrative. Instead, the corporate media has deliberately attempted to obscure the true nature of the events of that day, and those leading up to and subsequent to it, in order to dilute the impact of the self-evident, and quite damning, criminality of the fascist militias and their leaders and patrons. By using subtle, coded language that deliberately minimizes the barbarism of the events and shifts blame from Kiev to Moscow, the mainstream Western media once again acts as the dutiful servant of the US-EU ruling establishment.