On March 11, 2016 Stepan Khmara, the Hero of Ukraine, dissident and Ukrainian nationalist, visited Dnipropetrovsk. He noted that two years ago the city showed a real “miracle” as it were Dnipropetrovsk city residents who had stopped the Russian aggression.
Accompanied by Natalya Khazan and other Ukrainian patriots, Stepan Khmara visited Museum “Jewish Memory and Holocaust in Ukraine”, “Tkuma” Ukrainian Institute for Holocaust Studies, met Shmuel Kaminezki, Chief Rabbi of Dnipropetrovsk city and region. The guided tour through the Holocaust museum exhibitions was conducted by Dr. Igor Shchupak, “Tkuma” Institute and the Museum director.
During the guided tour Dr. Shchupak told the guest about attitude of Ukrainian nationalists to the “Jewish question” during World War II and the Holocaust, emphasizing four major points reflected in the exhibition:
1) Since 1941 Ukrainian nationalists participated in anti-Jewish pogroms and murders of Jews;
2) Ukrainian nationalists also acted as bystanders;
3) Among Ukrainian nationalists there were Righteous among the Nations; sometimes nationalists rescued large groups of Jews;
4) Some Jews actively participated in OUN and UPA.
The attitude of Ukrainian nationalists to Jews had been changing during the war, and it should be considered in the historical context.
S. Khmara agreed with such approach and noted that we can’t stand against the truth, no matter if it is good or bad. The guest was especially impressed the feat of Ukrainian Righteous among the Nations, in particular the rescuing of Aharon Weiss and his family.