Photo Credit: Courtesy, Israel Matzav blog
Text of anti-Semitic flyer distributed to Jews in Donetsk, Ukraine on Passover 2014.

It is said that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.  For some Jews in Donetsk, Ukraine on this Passover holiday of “freedom,” concern and even fear is lurking in their thoughts, making them wonder about the lessons of the past.

On the first day of Passover this week, three armed men in the eastern Ukrainian province of Donetsk distributed flyers warning Jews to “register” themselves and their assets with the new pro-Russian government, according to the novosti.dn.ua website.

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The flyers were handed out next to a synagogue as people were leaving following holiday prayers. They read as follows:

“Dear Ukraine citizens of Jewish nationality,

Due to the fact that the leaders of the Jewish community of Ukraine supported (Stepan) Bendery Junta, and oppose the pro-Slavic People’s Republic of Donetsk, [the interim government] has decided that all citizens of Jewish descent age 16 and older, residing within the territory of the republic, are required to report to the Commissioner for Nationalities in the Donetsk Regional Administration building and register by May 3.

(Ed. Note: Stepan Bander was a Ukrainian nationalist leader in Kiev who fought with Nazi Germany in the 1940s against Soviet troops before switching sides and taking up arms against the German occupation.)

“ID and passport are required to register your Jewish religion, religious documents of family members, as well as documents establishing the rights to all real estate property that belongs to you, including vehicles. Evasion of registration will result in citizenship revocation and you will be forced outside the country with a confiscation of property. A registration fee of $50 is required.”

Pro-Russian separatists are occupying the building where the Jews were told the register.

The flyer was written in the Russian language and bore the symbol of Mother Russia at the top of the page and that of the Donetsk People’s Republic at the bottom. It was allegedly signed by Denis Pushilin, chairman of the Donetsk interim government but no ink signature is seen on the paper.

Donetsk was recently declared an independent “people’s republic” by pro-Russian activists. In response to a query by a Ukrainian Jewish website, Pushilin confirmed the flyers were indeed distributed by his organization. However, he was quoted by the tvrain.ru news site on Wednesday as denying any connection to the content, and called the flyers a ‘provocation.’

Nevertheless, Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky told Voice of Israel government radio on Wednesday that aliyah from the Ukraine is likely to double by the end of 2014.

The flyer – authentic or not – constitutes the 17th anti-Semitic incident to have taken place in Ukraine since the beginning of 2014. Most were violent attacks. Several were aimed at Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries and a few were life-threatening. Five took place in Kiev alone, according to statistics gleaned from the Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism (CFCA) website.

A reader on the Israel Matzav blog warned in a number of posts that the situation in Ukraine is becoming extremely dangerous for Jews.

Wisely, a Jewish resident of Donetsk told Ynet that she does not intend to register, although she said that she had never encountered any form of anti-Semitism until she saw the flyer. “Though I take it very seriously, I am uncertain of its authenticity,” she said.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.

192 COMMENTS

  1. Goodnes! Surely this is a hoax and anyone who is foolish enough to register and give their names and documents to prove they have property may find they’ll get robbed.

  2. The document is not an official document by the Ukrainian government, it is a fake, a hoax like the Nigerian mails in your spam box…. Of course, many old people could go and “register” their money in the so called “places” where some bandits would wait for them… In times of crisis, there are so many thieves, any kind…

  3. Dear Citizens of Donetsk of other than Jewish background; I suggest for your self respect that you make a majority referendum that you do not support anti-Semitic provocation or action. If you fail to do so, the civilize world may see you as having divorced yourselves from the modern world and from any reason to see you as a partner in progressive and civil communication. Your choice, but i would rather be seen as civilized than
    barbarian.

  4. Sounds like a phony from a right wing group(Svoboda) who are anti-Semites and their ancestors probably helped Hitler kill Jews in WW2. I do not think Putin, who is a thug in his own right,would allow it. Hate to say it but many oligarchs in Russia including his personal banker are Jews plus he even bought an apartment in TelAviv for his old German teacher from the old Soviet Union who is Jewish and was in bad shape financially. He had the Russian govt. put money into a Jewish museum in Moscow and is on good terms with the Chabad there. These right wing Ukranians have hated the Jews way back, and blame them on the death of many Ukranians in the 1930’s which was Stalin’s doing.Hatred of Jews in the Ukraine is endemic- I know because I was there not many years ago and spoke to many about the problem.

  5. I suggest any jewish person living in that area to arm themselves and be prepared to fight if need be. Never again will jews be subjected to the near eradication of our religion. You cannot reason with anti semites, there is no negotiation or diplomacy with people who exist to hate you simply on the basis of your religion. The only response is to fight back.

  6. Jewish citizens are safe in Ukraine. The Ukrainian MP Yatsenyuk is a Jew, his right hand, the vize-MP Groisman is a Jew, etc. Anything is OK for the Jewish people in Ukraine. It’s a hoax by some local bandits – it’s a common hoax against old people, a simple way to take their money – with some “dociments”/ “registers” or phone calls (about relatives who need money in some hospital) – old people go there – and they become victims of robery at the place. In times of crisis such crimes are a status quo.

  7. Maybe so, Vanessa but there were members of the German government that were Jewish when Hitler took over and we all know what happened then. I spoke to a Chabad rabbi 2 weeks ago whose brother is located in a small Ukranian city. He said that his brother hoped the Russians would take over-that has to tell you something.

  8. Maybe so, Vanessa but there were members of the German government that were Jewish when Hitler took over and we all know what happened then. I spoke to a Chabad rabbi 2 weeks ago whose brother is located in a small Ukranian city. He said that his brother hoped the Russians would take over-that has to tell you something.

  9. Goodnes! Surely this is a hoax and anyone who is foolish enough to register and give their names and documents to prove they have property may find they'll get robbed.

  10. With social media this would be all over the press I doubt this is true otherwise we would see tweets and or facebook media comments unless these platforms are banned in the Ukraine which I do not think they are if you live in the ikraine and are Jewish post your situation for the world to see NEVER AGAIN

  11. REMEMBER JABOTISNKI!!! BUT THIS TIME WE WILL NOT GO QUIETLY INTO THE TRAINS…THIS TIME WE SHALL ARM OURSELVES AND FIGHT BACK…BETTER TO DIE STANDIND UP THAT TO LIVE ON YOUR KNEES…SHOAH? NEVER AGAIN!!!! I WOULD RATHER SEE THOUSANDS OF MASADAS!!!!

  12. Wisely, a Jewish resident of Donetsk told Ynet that she does not intend to register, although she said that she had never encountered any form of anti-Semitism until she saw the flyer. “Though I take it very seriously, I am uncertain of its authenticity,” she said

  13. Dear Citizens of Donetsk of other than Jewish background; I suggest for your self respect that you make a majority referendum that you do not support anti-Semitic provocation or action. If you fail to do so, the civilize world may see you as having divorced yourselves from the modern world and from any reason to see you as a partner in progressive and civil communication. Your choice, but i would rather be seen as civilized than
    barbarian.

  14. I suggest any jewish person living in that area to arm themselves and be prepared to fight if need be. Never again will jews be subjected to the near eradication of our religion. You cannot reason with anti semites, there is no negotiation or diplomacy with people who exist to hate you simply on the basis of your religion. The only response is to fight back.

  15. I was wondering what it would take to drag Russia to Isreal. I guess it all starts with a little hate here, and a little hate there, until that sort of evil spreads it’s leaves like a tree. How much is the world willing to put up with? It is up to us isn’t it?

  16. Lev Mikhaylov fly me in i am a proud Jew and willing to kill all who oppose the Jewish population,I am Part of the J.D.L. and would die standing, then licking the boots of a nazi-sympathizer

  17. My dear Gina…shooting how and with what? Ukrainian citizens are not allowed to own firearms unless they are law enforcement or military. It's not like in the USA there where they have the right to bear arms. Believe me, if the citizens there were armed, them nationalists and other Nazi pigs would have gotten their asses shot up a very long time ago.

  18. Wisely, a Jewish resident of Donetsk told Ynet that she does not intend to register, although she said that she had never encountered any form of anti-Semitism until she saw the flyer. “Though I take it very seriously, I am uncertain of its authenticity,” she said

  19. I feel heart sorry for the stress and anxiety these people must be suffering in such uncertain times, I wouldn’t trust Putin & his thugs further than I could throw them.

  20. Michael Schreiber sounds like you’re ready to kill because of an unconfirmed document written by probably a nobody which hasn’t caused harm to anyone at the moment and you’re ready to kill because of THAT?! how about kill yourself you Russophobe, you’re a menace to society.

  21. I was wondering what it would take to drag Russia to Isreal. I guess it all starts with a little hate here, and a little hate there, until that sort of evil spreads it's leaves like a tree. How much is the world willing to put up with? It is up to us isn't it?

  22. It’s Russian Expansionism all over again~! Remember Hitler’s reason to invade Czechoslovakia~? To protect Germans that were living there. Now Russia is using that tactic. She’s protecting Russians. Just prior to WWII was a time of European appeasement. The USA was isolationist. Hitler marched and kept it up from country to country. Back then, and even way prior to WWII, Russia was always known for her expansionistic approach. It was her foreign policy. Now we have Russia on the move again, no matter how devious she is at doing it, no matter how clever her words. We have appeasement again, but not just in Europe, but the USA also. We have Holocaust denials. We have Muslim war. This invasion of Crimea is just the tip of the iceberg. President Obama’s presidency seems to be bent on destroying the USA and it’s allies. and the American and Western way of life. This may be the biggest con job in history. He may be the devil incarnate, or just an American Muslim, seeking to destroy Western civilization. History will tell. But add to this, this despicable antisemitism, and every free soul that doesn’t take a stand against all these evils, deserves whatever happens to them. Take a stand, just like is being done in Nevada. Look, just put all these thing together, wake up and stand up for your rights and your freedom. Whichever way you fight, through legal channels or otherwise, do it now, not tomorrow. We must stop Russia. We must defeat terrorism. We must stop antisemitism. We must, once again, stand up, whether our allies follow or not. We just cannot let these things happen.
    Alfredorad

  23. Michael Schreiber sounds like you're ready to kill because of an unconfirmed document written by probably a nobody which hasn't caused harm to anyone at the moment and you're ready to kill because of THAT?! how about kill yourself you Russophobe, you're a menace to society.

  24. It's Russian Expansionism all over again~! Remember Hitler's reason to invade Czechoslovakia~? To protect Germans that were living there. Now Russia is using that tactic. She's protecting Russians. Just prior to WWII was a time of European appeasement. The USA was isolationist. Hitler marched and kept it up from country to country. Back then, and even way prior to WWII, Russia was always known for her expansionistic approach. It was her foreign policy. Now we have Russia on the move again, no matter how devious she is at doing it, no matter how clever her words. We have appeasement again, but not just in Europe, but the USA also. We have Holocaust denials. We have Muslim war. This invasion of Crimea is just the tip of the iceberg. President Obama's presidency seems to be bent on destroying the USA and it's allies. and the American and Western way of life. This may be the biggest con job in history. He may be the devil incarnate, or just an American Muslim, seeking to destroy Western civilization. History will tell. But add to this, this despicable antisemitism, and every free soul that doesn't take a stand against all these evils, deserves whatever happens to them. Take a stand, just like is being done in Nevada. Look, just put all these thing together, wake up and stand up for your rights and your freedom. Whichever way you fight, through legal channels or otherwise, do it now, not tomorrow. We must stop Russia. We must defeat terrorism. We must stop antisemitism. We must, once again, stand up, whether our allies follow or not. We just cannot let these things happen.
    Alfredorad

  25. Hey Jack, Lets be fair. We all have something or other; but me. You’re wrong. In fact all my family are not how you may think. They believe in the Ten Commandments and just lead normal family lives.
    What’s your heritage~?

  26. so what your saying is ; the jews bred in russia are semite? is that because they belong to a religion? we have a lot of black jews in the us? are they semites/ and one comes to mind, sammy davis junior was a bptist and converted to the jewish religion. is he a semite too?

  27. Absolutely horrifying! The world stood by and did nothing in the 40’s–and I have no doubt nothing will be done to stop it this time as well. Antisemitism is, and will always be, alive and well – just camouflaged a little more and more with each generation. So sad-and terrifying!

  28. Absolutely horrifying! The world stood by and did nothing in the 40's–and I have no doubt nothing will be done to stop it this time as well. Antisemitism is, and will always be, alive and well – just camouflaged a little more and more with each generation. So sad-and terrifying!

  29. Jerry Elliott
    Jerry- I don’t blame him for what Russia is doing. I blame him for what he is not doing about what Russia is doing.. Please, don’t be so naive. Just watch Fox news once or twice and It’ll become clear.

  30. this is BS. not buying it, sorry. Only there to arouse emotion and hatred against Russia to promote a war. How can the fee be a nice neat $50 in terms of Ukrainian money? And if it is true, who would actually fall for it and comply? This has false flag written all over it.

  31. this is BS. not buying it, sorry. Only there to arouse emotion and hatred against Russia to promote a war. How can the fee be a nice neat $50 in terms of Ukrainian money? And if it is true, who would actually fall for it and comply? This has false flag written all over it.

  32. That’s all true, but lets not forget the countries that waved flags and welcomed him. Austria comes to mind.. As for Obama…to accept one aspect of his actions as being evil is to accept everything he’s said and done as being evil and deliberate. I never thought of him possessing the intellect to pull it off. Ergo, it’s must be a conspiracy. That i can’t believe.

  33. Are we traveling back in time. This is intolerable. What’s next forcing Jews to carry papers? The uproar about this should be heard around the world. I’ve been following current events and each day i’m stunned. Are we so far removed from the Holocaust that the younger generations are’nt cognizant of the atrocities that occurred.

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