Burning of Ukrainian books by Russian soldiers? meditation, intoxication

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On May 21, politicians and experts shared a photo of burned books, claiming that the Russian military destroyed Ukrainian books in the territories they occupied. While Ukrainian authorities have reported cases of books being destroyed by Russian soldiers, the photo actually shows the burning of a book staged by pro-Russian protesters in Crimea in 2010.

Brief verification:

  • Pundits and politicians such as the UK’s ambassador to Ukraine have shared a picture of the book burning.
  • This scene actually shows books being burned by pro-Russian protesters in Crimea in March 2010.
  • Ukrainian authorities have reported cases of destruction of the books, but the pictures are not available today.

Detail Verification:

On May 21, a picture showing books spread on the ground and surrounded by flames was shared by several experts. Among them, Karl Bildt, former prime minister of Sweden and co-chair of the think tank European Council on Foreign Affairs, in a publication that has accumulated more than 9,000 “likes”. They claim that “the occupied territories now contain reports and photographs of Russian occupiers who may burn whatever books they can find on Ukrainian history”.

Screenshot of Karl Bildt’s May 21 tweet claiming Ukrainian books were burned by Russian soldiers © Audience

On the same day, the British Ambassador to Ukraine have published The photo is getting more than 14,000 likes on his Twitter account.

Books destroyed by pro-Russians in Ukraine in 2010

A search in Russian for “burnt history books” with the words “Ukraine” and “Crimea” could yield this report from the Ukrainian television channel TCH on March 16, 2010.

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At 0’23 of the report, we recognize the books that have been burned, including a book called “New History of Ukraine”.

The books shown in the 2010 TCH report are the same as those in the photos shared on Twitter.
The books shown in the 2010 TCH report are the same as those in the photos shared on Twitter. © Audience

Reports indicate that it is a demonstration held in Simferopol, Crimea on March 14, during which representatives of the Proryev Organization and the Natalia Viterenko Bloc, two pro-Russian political organizations, burned books on Ukraine’s modern history.

The caption stated that the book “The Most Recent History of Ukraine” and works of Soviet authors were destroyed.

An article in the Russian media Rosbalt confirms that a book was burnt during the demonstration.

Upon performing a reverse image search using the Yandex search engine, the same image can be found in a January 2014 article from Ukrainian news site Censor.net, which claimed that “photos from various years’ events organized by Russian communities were compiled”. have been done.”

Other images of the same protest have been released, such as these two images below, in which we also see burnt books in the foreground.

Photograph of a March 14, 2010 protest in Crimea, where pro-Russian protesters burned Ukrainian history books.
Photograph of a March 14, 2010 protest in Crimea, where pro-Russian protesters burned Ukrainian history books. © Audience
written in white and red sign
In the white and red sign it is written “Mother tongue Russian – status of the state language. Block Natalia Viterenko “ © Audience

In March 2010, a new government was formed by Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, with pro-Russian Dmitry Tabachnik as Minister of Education. On March 11, a demonstration in support of Dmitry Tabachnik took place in Crimea. From 17 March, there were counter-demonstrations to condemn his appointment, especially in the west of the country, with his opponents declaring that he “disgraced the Ukrainian language and culture”.

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What do we know about the destruction of books in Ukraine?

Although these images do not show the book burning in the recent conflict in Ukraine, Ukrainian authorities have claimed that Russian troops destroyed the books in the occupied territories of Lugansk, Donetsk, Chernihiv and Sumy. However, our editorial staff could not find any photos depicting these destructions.

Many Ukrainian libraries have been the target of bombings in Ukraine.


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About the Author: Rusty Kemp

Tv ninja. Lifelong analyst. Award-winning music evangelist. Professional beer buff. Incurable zombie specialist.

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