Article by: Halyna Tereshchuk
Dozens of photos of politicians, officials, policemen in military uniform, bulletproof vests, with a rifle in hand in front of a liberated town in the East have been uploaded to social networks.
Lviv citizens had an ambiguous reaction to the fact that the former head of the Party of Regions faction in the Lviv Oblast Council Ihor Hreshchuk went to the East in August as a volunteer for Aydar battalion and immediately commented on the actions on his fellow colleagues from Lviv who stood on Maidan in various interviews.
Ihor Hreshchuk told Radio Liberty that he went to defend Ukraine, that he is in the town of Shchasya in Luhansk oblast, and he went to Aydar battalion because it already included his friends from Luhansk.
“When they went to war, I called them and said I would come. If they went, I had to go as well. Those who really came here and went on missions in the ATO zone will never say bad things. Few members of the Lviv council agreed to go. We have many unfortunate patriots, who hid behind other people’s backs on Maidan. Those who go today after the lustration law may be patriotic, they may have understood something, but, as a rule, they are people who just need to ‘check in.’ I am not subject to the law,” Ihor Hreshchuk emphasized.
Heroes don’t lie
Real heroes never show off, emphasizes spokesman for the Western operative command, colonel Olexandr Poroniuk. If someone wants to cleanse themselves of their past, they have to go the military as a mobilized individual to defend the country in the East. He thinks that those who want to achieve career bonuses are hiding in volunteer battalions. A mobilized man has to serve in accordance with discipline and cannot go home of his own volition, as is the case in ‘political battalions.’
“I would not be surprised if they become combatants after some time and will get subsidies for their 300-500 square meter residences. They are using time, following the wind and only counting on the powers that are going to the government. I see how people who speculated just half a year ago are asking me to become friends on Facebook, and now posting photos from the East. Even the commands themselves say that there are 600 people in the battalions, however only 80 really fight,” noted Olexandr Poroniuk.
Social lift for the dishonest
The lustration law prescribes certain preferences for those who went to the combat zone and defended the country. Therefore, many politicians, law enforcement workers whose past is somewhat ‘shady’ are trying to check in in the East in order to maintain ‘buoyancy’ in the future. This is not a system, says journalist, political observer Ivan Kryvy. However, he entertains the possibility that when these dishonest people return, they will start teaching others, saying they defended and fought. According, now there is a certain social lift for dishonest people, allowing them to return to politics or power after Maidan.
“But this will be obvious immediately, it is enough to look at the person’s past, and the very fact to teaching others how to live is suspicious. A real warrior who defended the country has dignity, honor and modesty, therefore he will not tell everyone of his heroics. And if someone boasts having gone to the ATO zone, this may be a hint at the fact that they didn’t go there to defend,” the expert opines.
Everyone who has been to the combat zone and who has it documented has to receive subsidies from the state, this much is clear to the Ukrainian public. People it cities and villages will be able to morally evaluate those who go to the East to check in. However, this has to be thoroughly investigated as proven, as the courage of real and brave defenders of Ukraine does not evoke any doubt.