It condemns the Oct. 28 parliamentary election success of the nationalist Svoboda Party, whose leader Oleh Tiahnybok has made anti-Semitic remarks in the past. He now commands 37 out of 450 seats in the Verkhovna Rada.
“Svoboda’s ideological roots, however, are hardly out of sync with the country’s mainstream,” the editorial continued. “Ukraine, unfortunately, hadn’t cleansed its citizenry of endemic anti-Semitism (it) is vulgar and in-your-face – as it was before the Soviets temporarily held the genie in the bottle.”
Endemic anti-Semitism is not part of the country’s mainstream ideology today, if it ever was, at least among most Ukrainians. And the Soviets didn’t keep the genie in the bottle; rather, Josef Stalin fueled hatred and the Soviets downplayed atrocities against Jews during World War II.