Minister Freeland's Grandfather,
"It takes a village to raise a Nazi" (old African proverb, slightly modified)
A Waffen SS veteran was the
Her summer job was to write articles for The Encyclopedia of Ukraine which was started by her grandfather's wartime boss, the Nazi's leading Ukrainian collaborationist, Volodymyr Kubijovych.
Savaryn, a prominent co-founder of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, which manages the encyclopedia project, "made his SS past an important part of his Ukrainian identity and probably understood it as a contribution to Canadian multiculturalism."[i] The federal government agreed. The Governor General gave Savaryn the Order of Canada in 1987 for having "worked to promote multiculturalism in Canada" and for being "active in his community as a volunteer."[ii] Both Savaryn and Michael Chomiak, Freeland's maternal grandfather, were active with the community of Ukrainian WWII veterans associated with the Third Reich.
Grzegorz Rossoliński-Liebe, "Celebrating Fascism And War Criminality In
Edmonton: The Political Myth and Cult of Stepan Bandera in Multicultural
Canada," December 29, 2010, p.7.
Order of Canada, Peter Savaryn, C.M., Q.C., LL.B., LL.D.
If you appreciate the work that went into this research, please
subscribe &/or donate.
You can mail this
to COAT, or use the
on our homepage. Subscription prices:
This issue (#68) deals with the mass internment of Ukrainian Canadians, this community's left-right split and the mainstream racist, xenophobic anti-communism of progressive "Social Gospellers" (like the CCF's J.S. Woodsworth) who were so captivated by their false beliefs that they carried out the genocide of First Nations and turned a blind eye to government repression during the 20th-century "Red Scare."
Canadians should not be surprised by the fact that our Liberal Foreign Minister, Chrystia Freeland, has been hiding a big Nazi skeleton in her family closet.
Like so many other ultranationalists in the Ukrainian émigré community whose forbears came to Canada soon after WWII, Freeland has covered up the truth about a close and revered family member who collaborated with the Nazi regime. In that way, Freeland's case is not terribly unusual.
What is truly impressive about this whole story is how the ultranationalist Ukrainian diaspora, the Liberal government and the mainstream corporate media have managed to keep a lid on broader issues surrounding Ukrainian collaboration with the Nazis in executing mass murder and genocide, including the Holocaust.
Even now, after the story has been "covered" by the mainstream mass media, precious few details have actually been allowed to creep out about Freeland's grandfather (her dido in Ukrainian). This "coverage" amounts to more "cover up" because, while it exposes some information, it falls far short of revealing far more damaging truths. It is what the "intelligence" community calls a "limited hangout."[i]
Michael Chomiak (1905-1984) held the influential position of editor in chief for the Nazi's leading Ukrainian-language newspaper, Krakivs'ki visti (Krakow News). As the flagship Nazi propaganda mouthpiece for Ukrainians all across Greater Germany and occupied Europe, this daily newspaper played a key role in riling up widespread support within Ukrainian community for the military efforts of Canada's wartime enemies.
Under Chomiak's guidance and oversight, this Nazi-empowered newspaper spouted vile antiSemitic fake news which helped Ukrainians to justify and rationalise the liquidation of some seven million Jews. The newspaper also actively promoted vile hatred towards the most powerful enemy of Nazism, namely, the Soviet Union. In case anyone has forgotten, that country lost 25 to 30 million citizens as a result of the Nazi onslaught against their homeland. This incredible death toll included about 8.7 million members of the Red Army who died fighting the Nazis. The Soviets eventually repelled the Nazi military and chased them back to Germany. It is no wonder that the Soviet people called WWII, "The Great Patriotic War."
Chomiak was officially responsible for at least one other newspaper, a weekly called Kholmska zemlia (Cholmer Land). It, like Krakivs'ki visti, contained many edited speeches by Nazi leaders including Adolph Hitler, propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, Governors Hans Frank and Otto Wächter, and many others. Baron von Wächter was a lawyer, Nazi politician and the SS-Gruppenführer (Major General) who oversaw the creation of the 14th Waffen SS Galician division in 1943. This Ukrainian military formation was funded, armed, controlled and led by the Nazi regime. Its members were volunteers who swore a religious oath to fight to the death for their supreme leader, Adolph Hitler. Recruitment for the Waffen SS Galicia was done by the Nazis, Ukrainian church leaders and Ukrainian newspapers, including that leading propaganda organ, with Chomiak at its helm, Krakivs'ki visti.
The many Nazi leaders whose words
and deeds were so favourably promoted in the pages of Krakivs'ki visti
and Kholmska zemlia,
represented the master race of fake news in their day. For his part,
Michael Chomiak was their faithful servant, turning out a daily whirlwind of
Nazi news, and spinning war stories to suit their propaganda needs. As chief editor and office
manager for these newspapers of the officially-sanctioned Ukrainian Publishing House, Michael
Chomiak facilitated the largest mass media outlet by which the Nazi's
psychopathic political phobias against Judaism and communism were spread to
the Ukrainian diaspora across Europe.
"The Central Committee building at Grunestrasse ... was in fact a shared building. The Ukrainians were headquartered there as well as the German military intelligence or Abwehr."[ii]
When a German Colonel, Alfred Bisanz, was arrested near the war's end, he gave insights into the relationship between Kubijovych's Ukrainian Central Committee and the Nazi authorities which created, funded and controlled it. Bisantz testified that:
"Kubiyovych's Ukrainian Central Committee [UCC] was created by the Abwehr in Krakow in 1940. From the first day of its existence, it was directly supervised by the intelligence body of Abwehrstelle-Krakow. Actually, this function was discharged by the Second Department of the Abwehrstelle-Krakow, headed by Major von Deml. As an assistant to the head of the Department, I was charged with directing UCC activity. Without the Abwehrstelle's permission and my personal clearance, Kubiyovych had no right to include any person in the Committee or take any action.... Likewise, financing the UCC was also carried out through me. Each month throughout 1940, I personally handed Kubiyovych and UCC Secretary-General Hlibovitsky a sum of 50-60 thousand zlotys."[iii]
This means Nazi payments to the UCC in Krakow were between 600,000 and 720,000 zlotys in 1940. (This is calculated to be the equivalent of between $2.8 and $3.36 million today.) One of the Committee's expenses was Michael Chomiak's salary. In an official 1946 "Military Questionnaire" (which Chomiak completed in German), he reported that his annual salary as chief editor for 1940 was 5,000 zlotys. This starting salary is calculated to be worth the equivalent $23,300 in 2017 Canadian dollars. It was increased to $35,000 the following year and by 1944, his annual salary was the equivalent of about $44,500.[iv]
Meanwhile, elsewhere, another UCC was being formed by another antiSemitic, anticommunist government. Yes, the Canadian government, like the Nazi government in Germany, formed a Ukrainian organisation with the same acronym, UCC. The UCC that the Liberal government formed in Canada was the Ukrainian Canadian Committee. It's name was changed in the 1980s to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress. (Click here to learn more about the Canadian UCC, its fascist roots, and its links to both Michael Chomiak and Chrystia Freeland.)
The Liberal government of Canada facilitated the creation of their UCC for two basic reasons: (1) to consolidate the right-wing Ukrainian diaspora community in Canada, and (2) to provide a bulwark to oppose the left-leaning Ukrainian Canadians whose organisations then dominated the Ukrainian political landscape in this country. After the war, Canada's UCC surged with power as it benefited from the massive influx of tens of thousands of ultranationalist Ukrainians who the Liberal government brought here. This migration included thousands of Waffen SS Galician division veterans and other military formations of Ukrainians that fought against Canada's Soviet allies during WWII.
While Canadians certainly deserve to learn the truth about their foreign minister's maternal grandfather, they should also be exposed to information about some broader, and much more important secrets that have been hidden from them for far too long.
Let's not settle for just pulling Michael Chomiak out of Minister Freeland's family closet and into the light of public awareness. We have an opportunity now to throw light on many other Nazi skeletons that have for far too long been lurking in the shadows of large Canadian wardrobes. In particular, let's look at the Freeland family secret in the context of the three large social institutions with which she is most closely associated:
(1) the ultranationalist Ukrainian
Canadian diaspora, represented by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress,
Sources and Notes
"A 'limited hangout' is spy jargon for a favorite and frequently used
gimmick of the clandestine professionals. When their veil of secrecy is
shredded and they can no longer rely on a phony cover story to misinform
the public, they resort to admitting -- sometimes even volunteering --
some of the truth while still managing to withhold the key and damaging
facts in the case. The public, however is usually so intrigued by the new
information that it never thinks to pursue the matter further..... But
once again the good folks of middle America will be hoodwinked by the
government and its allies in the establishment news media."
Victor Marchetti, "CIA to 'Admit' Hunt Involvement in Kennedy Slaying," The Spotlight, August 14, 1978. Cited in a legal case "720 F2d 631 Hunt v. Liberty Lobby Dc," OpenJurist, November 28, 1983.
Victor Marchetti was the
former special assistant to the Deputy Director of the CIA. In the
1970s he became a CIA whistleblower and wrote an indictment of the
intelligence community called: The CIA and the Cult of intelligence,
1974. It was coauthored by John D. Marks -- another whistleblower --
who had been an analyst and staff assistant to the State Department's
E.Howard Hunt, a CIA operative (1949-1970) became one of "The Plumbers" a secret team used by Nixon to carry out covert operations. They got caught in the Watergate Hotel and that lead to many things including Nixon having to hand over the White House tapes.
See: Len Colodny and Robert Gettlin, Silent Coup: The Removal of a President, 2015.
Nixon used the term "modified limited hangout" in a conversation with fellow conspirators (H.R.Haldeman and John N.Mitchell) on March 22, 1973. They were discussing how to handle the Watergate scandal, from which all future scandals got the "-gate" suffix. (Contragate, Irangate, and now perhaps, Didogate?) Listen to their "colourful" discussion on this recording now available in the online collection of the Nixon Library from the subpoenaed "Watergate Trial Conversations."
[ii] Personal communication, Pawel Markiewicz, March 8, 2017.
[iii] Klym Dmytruk, "Who are the 'Diviziynyks'," Their True Face (Part Four) (Yevhen Valevsky, editor), 1979, pp.16-17.
In this quotation Bisantz mentions the Abwehrstelle-Krakow, i.e., the Krakow station of the Nazi's intelligence agency. There is an interesting 44-page, declassified "SECRET" document detailing the CIA's use of assets from the Abwehrstelle-Krakow. The document mentions collaborationist Ukrainians who moved to Canada after the war.
Transmittal of Material on Micheal KORZAN," June 23, 1952, pp.6, 40.
[iv] Military Government of Germany Questionnaire, October 2, 1946. (Thanks to Pawel Markiewicz for providing this official form completed by Michael Chomiak in German.)
Provincial Archives (Edmonton, AB), Michael
Chomiak fond, 85.191, box 2, file 20. box 2 file 28.
Thanks to Christian Manser for translating other parts of Chomiak's German responses in this form.
To calculate the conversion of wartime Polish zlotys to current Canadian dollars, Pawel Markiewicz noted the following in a personal communication on March 2, 2017:
"This excerpt may help from Frank Golczewski's piece entitled: "Shades of Grey: Reflections on Jewish-Ukrainian and German-Ukrainian Relations in Galicia‚" The Shoah in Ukraine. History, Testimony, Memorialization (Ray Brandon and Wendy Lower, eds). He wrote:
'The Greek Catholic Church was granted considerably leeway and provided subsidies, while the Roman Catholic Church suffered extensive persecution "The Greek Catholic Church received 535,383 zloty per month in 1942. Using official affixed exchange rates (Reich Mark 2.5/USD $1, 1941), this worked out to about $107,000 at the time, which today would be worth around $1.48 million (2006 USD). The sum was bound to be somewhat less, as this figure fails to take into account purchasing power and the more realistic exchange rates that most likely existed on the black market.'"
* This does not take into account RM devaluation
during the period of 1941 to 1945 or the increase in value between 1940 to
** Re: Chomiak's salary in 1945: He only received a three months salary (January-March) in 1945. Chomiak and his family moved to Vienna in German-occupied Austria when the Soviet Army drove the Nazis out of Poland in October 1944. Then, for five and a half months, working from Vienna, Chomiak continued as the editor in chief of Krakivs'ki visti (which increased circulation to 22,400 copies per day). However, Chomiak's work was finally forced to end when the Soviet Army entered Austria on March 29, 1945. The last issue of Krakivs'ki visti was published on that very day. The Soviet operation which ousted the Nazi military from Vienna began on April 2, 1945. No longer protected by the Nazi regime in Austria, Chomiak and his family fled once again from the Soviet Army, this time to Germany. (This was the third time Chomiak had fled from the Soviets.)