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Author: Yaroslav Hrytsak

1918 – A geopolitical catastrophe for Ukraine

There is merit in perusing counterfactual history – which is not about what happened, but what could have happened. It allows us to reconsider simple questions and search for more precise answers. Why the Ukrainian revolution lost in 1918 is one such question.

When we recall 1918, within the context of Polish-Ukrainian relations, the first thing that springs to mind is the Polish-Ukrainian war for Lviv and Galicia. And this is only natural. This war has deeply influenced relations between the two societies for the decades that followed. As Christoph Mick described it in Lemberg, Lwów, L'viv, 1914-1947: Violence and Ethnicity in a Contested City, interactions between Poles, Ukrainians and Jews – until the horrors of the Second World War – developed under the influence of the memory of November 1918. Poles celebrated the victory and Ukrainians prepared for revenge, while Jews contemplated memories of the pogrom staged by the Polish army when it marched into Lviv and hence feared Polish antisemitism more than Ukrainian antisemitism.

November 5, 2018 - Yaroslav Hrytsak

The future of Ukraine is the future of Europe

I often say that what happened in Polish-Ukrainian relations after the fall of the Berlin Wall was a geopolitical revolution. I compare it to the French and German reconciliation in the 1950s. While that laid the foundation for a new post-war Europe, a Polish-Ukrainian reconciliation creates the possibility of this construction extending further East. Moreover, the stakes in Polish-Ukrainian relations always were, and indeed continue to be, about more than just Poland and Ukraine.

July 13, 2016 - Yaroslav Hrytsak

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