Monday Headlines

Ukraine’s Parliament Passes Law Honoring Nationalists
The Ukrainian parliament recently passed a controversial law that honors dozens of nationalist organizations — including far-left socialists, monarchists, and neo-fascists — as “fighters for Ukrainian statehood.”

While most of the groups are benign, Josh Cohen of Foreign Policy notes two — the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) — were actually involved in the Holocaust and the ethnic cleansing of Poles in western Ukraine during and after World War II.

” The inclusion of these organizations among those that are exempt from criticism is deeply disturbing. The OUN was founded in 1929 as a revolutionary, nationalist organization, designed to throw off Soviet rule and create an independent Ukraine. Much of its leadership had spent time in Nazi Germany, and the group embraced the notion of an ethnically pure Ukrainian nation,” he writes.

A New Global Marketplace Of Political Change
Carnegie Endowment’s Thomas Carothers and Oren Samet-Marram describe a “new global marketplace of political change” in which Western democratic powers play an increasingly limited role.

The paper describes the need for Western policymakers to come to grips with the full reach and complexity of the global marketplace of political influence.

Colombian Peace Process In Peril
The peace talks which have been ongoing since 2012 between Colombia and the FARC rebel group have grown increasingly tense in the last week, but the U.S.  has expressed its support for Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos’ plan to set up time limits for the peace negotiations.

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jacobson recently said the U.S. would support President Santos’ call for time limits, reports the Latin American Herald Times.

UN Report: Israel Killed Civilians, Palestinian Militants Hid Weapons
A U.N. report released today that asserts Israel killed at least 44 civilians and injured 227 others at six shelters the agency administered during last summer’s conflict in Gaza, while Palestinian militants hid weapons at three other shelters.

In a letter transmitting to the Security Council the public summary of a report of the Board of Inquiry regarding incidents in Gaza during the recent conflict, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today expressed his “profound and continuing concern” for civilian populations of the Gaza Strip and Israel.

“The agony of Palestinian civilians in Gaza, and the tragic, decades-long predicament they endure there, is reflected in the report of the Board of Inquiry,” said Mr. Ban in the letter accompanying the report.

“We should also bear in mind that Israeli civilians in southern Israel continue to face the threat of rocket and terrorist attacks by Hamas and other militant groups.”

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