onsdag 1 september 2010

Katyn: Dionis Kaptar’s interview with Viktor Ilyukhin on "KM TV" July 8, 2010

On July 8, 2010, Viktor Ilyukhin appeared for the second time in the program "Konferentsiya" on the TV channel "KM TV" where he was interviewed by the host Dionis Kaptar. Ilyukhin continued his story about the recently revealed forgeries of Russian archive documents.

Ilyukhin was recently contacted by an anonymous person who told him that during the 1990s there was an extensive manufacturing of false archive documents. This time Ilyukhin brought to the studio some of the objects that the anonymous person had forwarded to him as evidence for his claims.

The anonymous informant participated himself in the forgery work. All documents that was forged by him and the group he was part of, was about the Soviet era and particularly such things that dealt with Stalin. In the forgery of the documents they used genuine forms from the 1930s and 1940s. These forms must have been preserved at the 9th Directorate of the KGB. The forgery group also got access to genuine typewriters from that period.

They have now made an examination of the stamps that the anonymous informant had forwarded to Ilyukhin and the conclusion was that they were made in late 1970s at the earliest or maybe in early 1980s. Before that it wasn’t technically possible to make such stamps.

In conducting this examination contact was made with certain organizations with highly qualified specialists at their disposal, experts who are working within the forensic laboratories of the MVD (The Ministry of Interior). It is not so easy to find someone who would dare to undertake such a task since there is a risk that the result of such an examination would go against the President's line. These specialists have all the necessary certificates and have forensic examinations as their ordinary job. According to Ilyukhin they have full confidence in them. In daily work they are doing this kind of examinations in civil cases and other judicial contexts, but they also do it at home. Their expert examinations have also been presented to certain officials at the Russian security service who agree that the conclusions made by these experts are correct.

In the early 1990s there was total disorder in the Russian archives. It was then that they found many scattered documents from the past that they tried to bring in order. In the manufacturing of forged documents they also used some genuine stamps from the Soviet era.

Ilyukhin then showed "Special case no. 29" (Russian: "Spetsfond, delo 29, tom 7"). It is a file consisting of 202 pages which contains the correspondence between the NKVD and NKGB with Stalin from 1941, where many of the documents concern the work of the Soviet security service. For instance it is about the intrigues of the spies, about the situation at the border and illegal border crossings, about the activities of the Ukrainian bandits and the OUN in Western Ukraine and the counteractions against them from the Soviet security service.

In this file they have planted two large fake letters. The first letter is signed by Timoshenko, Zhukov and Vasilevsky, and must have been produced by forgery specialists at the Russian military institute. The purpose of the forgery is unknown but the anonymous informant believes that it could have been done in order to raise the authority of the security service. Obviously the purpose of this was to create an image that they warned Stalin of a coming German attack but that he despite of that did not take any actions in order to stop it.

The second fake document, which appears on page 109 in this folder, is also “signed” by the same individuals, i.e. Timoshenko, Zhukov and Vasilevsky. It contains very detailed and exact information about the concentration of German forces along the Soviet border. According to the document it was suggested to Stalin in April 1941 to begin a mobilization and to strike first. The purpose must have been to show that Stalin wanted to start a war in Europe and that Hitler forestalled him by his "preventive" strike against the Soviet Union. It was meant that Stalin should liberate Poland from the Germans and then capture Czechoslovakia, Romania and Yugoslavia, i.e. the whole of Southeastern Europe. After that he would, according to the fake letter, present an ultimatum to Hitler to accept the new border in Europe, otherwise it would be a continued war between the countries.

The sad thing, according to Ilyukhin, is that both these forgeries have already been published, e.g. the first letter is said to be found in a document collection released by the Federal Russian Security Service.

Ilyukhin says that he has consulted different specialists and that they have reached the conclusion that most of the documents in the file "Special case no. 29" are genuine, have a historical value and ought to be stored in archives. From this file they must have made three copies at the order of Dmitri Volkogonov and that these copies must have been spread around in Russia and in Europe.

Dionis Kaptar said that it looks like this is not only about Katyn and was interested in what more they have reached conclusions about.

Ilyukhin said that several Russian citizens on the highest levels have been practicing this kind of diversions, e.g. Dmitri Volkogonov. On his initiative several top secret Russian documents were forwarded to the American Library of Congress. Volkogonov, who was President Yeltsin's advisor during the 1990s, did not even bother to de-classify these documents that were later transferred out of the country. Alexander Yakovlev was also, according to Ilyukhin, involved in similar activities. Yakovlev is to have said once that "we must do everything in order for the Western world to renounce the Soviet Union".

The blow of today is no longer directed against the Soviet Union, but also to Russia. The Poles are demanding compensation for the Katyn massacre in the magnitude of 100 billion dollar, a sum that will put an enormous burden on the shoulders of Russia's young generation.

Ilyukhin says that the Polish Institute for National Remembrance (IPN) is working very hard with the Katyn question in particular and that they are distorting historical facts. The Institute has a lot of professionals at its disposal and receive an annual 70 million dollar (money from the Polish treasurer) in order to finance its work. In Poland there is also the so-called Katyn committee which is working in the same spirit as the IPN. These two organizations are "pointing all their darts" against Russia and are forming the Polish position, says Ilyukhin.

Some of the relatives of those killed in Katyn have turned to the European Court and demanded compensation. There are about 70 cases that will eventually be approved. This will in turn create a precedent and followed by greater common demands. The figure that has been mentioned recently is more than 100 billion dollar. They are motivating that their demand of compensation is because that the NKVD shot the Poles. They mean that the NKVD killed the elite of Poland and want to classify it as genocide. If they succeed in this then it means that the crime has no limitation.

Ilyukhin said that he and several of his colleagues are now working with a group of Russian history scholars in order to reveal these falsehoods.

Dionis Kaptar wondered if anyone in Poland has reacted over the latest development in Russia regarding the Katyn issue. Ilyukhin said that the Polish press has written that the Russian critics are demanding a renewed investigation of this case, an investigation which ought to check all the versions and all the facts. But otherwise the Poles have been occupied with Kaczynski's plane crash and the recently concluded presidential election. But the Polish reaction will probably come and it will be harsh.

The leadership of our country unfortunately believe that they can appease the Poles and get them to be nice, e.g. that we have now forwarded more than 67 files with investigative materials around the Katyn case. And now Poland has also gotten Komorowski as new president. But one shall not be naïve and believe that all this will change anything. It is still the IPN and the Katyn Committee who are steering the Polish agenda. They want to see results from their work and all their efforts. They have repeated the same thing for 30 years and certainly do not want to allow anyone to change that.

It is not impossible that today's leadership in Russia is prepared to admit that they have made a mistake by the hasty confession to the Poles, says Ilyukhin. Gorbachev was a superficial man. With regard to Yeltsin, and forgive me for being maybe not so polite here, he was only capable of reading the text on the labels of the liquor bottles. Putin continued too lightly on the same track. He is under severe pressure with all the contradicting facts in the Katyn case, but has already admitted the Soviet guilt.

We should tell the Poles that if they are really genuinely interested in the truth they should take a look back at what happened in 1920. At that time 120 000 Red Guards plus almost as many civilians from the Western Ukraine and Western Byelorussia ended up in Polish captivity. There were some real concentration camps in Poland where the prisoners were treated badly. Chicherin wrote after two years that 60 000 Russians had died in the Polish camps. The prisoners were subjected to harsh punishment; they did not get any food and so on. These camps were a precursor to the German concentration camps. They could shoot a Russian prisoner only because he had stolen a hen. At one time 240 individuals were shot at the same time. Another time some tens of people died during a four day long transport that was carried out in severe heat. The prisoners then got neither food nor water. All that is described in Polish documents.

Why are Putin and Medvedev so indifferent to their own country's history? Why don't they respect it? - wondered Ilyukhin. They have apologized to Poland, but why don't they visit any of the crosses that are exhibited in Poland over the dead Russian soldiers from the war of 1920? They could visit them first and lay down a flower there before they go further to participate in the Polish Katyn commemorations.

The Soviet period in our country's history is completely ignored today by many leaders; they think of that period as something frightening, they hate it, they spit on their own roots. If they don't have respect for our history then one might wonder what respect they will have themselves in people's eyes in 20-30 years from now. After all it is all about our own great country and in our country's history there was everything from tragedies to great heroism. So why should everything be spitted on?

Dionis Kaptar wondered if Ilyukhin is supported by others in his struggle or if he is acting alone. Ilyukhin replied by first of all thanking Kaptar for being given the opportunity to appear on "KM TV". According to Ilyukhin they are beginning to break through the information blockade which the official Russian authorities are behind, and the breakthrough has now been accomplished, i.e. "because of you". The day before the TV program a big interview with Ilyukhin was done by the newspaper "Literaturnaya gazeta". In that interview he told about how the history is being falsified. If something is written in "Literaturnaya gazeta" then it means that their Editor Yuri Polyakov completely or partially is sharing our view, Ilyukhin says.

Certain other materials are being published locally. A film about Katyn that we have produced ("Polskiy krest Rossii") is available on the KPRF site. Today many people in Russia know about this. Ilyukhin receives many letters from different persons who are interested in this and who even give him advice on how he should act. A commercial company have also downloaded this film and sold 90 000 copies of it, mainly in the three big cities St. Petersburg, Moscow and Sverdlovsk. One can say that they earn money on the truth, adds Kaptar. Ilyukhin said that he had nothing against it. The most important thing is that people will know how barbarically they treat history in Russia.

At this moment it's a political off-season in Russia. A lot of people are on holidays; on July 12 the last plenary meeting in the Duma is taken place before it also goes on holiday. Ilyukhin will later bring up the question of a parliamentary investigation around this.

Ilyukhin said that there are other false documents apart from "Beria's letter" and two other Katyn documents that Kaptar so far has been allowed to see. He showed a document of a claimed co-operation between the NKVD and the Gestapo "signed in 1939". Many people have claimed that the document is false, but no one has been able to verify it. But Ilyukhin has asked his experts to take a look at it. They examined Beria's facsimile signature and a German Gestapo stamp. Beria's signature has been proven false. The document is otherwise "signed" by Beria and Müller, but since Beria's signature is false it is no longer any need in examining Müller's signature.

In another document, a certificate, "Beria" writes about the national composition inside the leadership of the NKVD and Gulag. It is a known fact that the number of Jews in these organizations was very large. In his certificate "Beria" suggests that they must get more Ukrainians, Byelorussians and Russian in these organizations. This document has been examined by experts and has been proven false. "Beria's" signature in that document has been made by using "his" facsimile signatures (Ilyukhin has three of them) and "printed the name in several layers".

According to the anonymous informant hundreds and thousands of false documents have been inserted in the Russian archives. Ilyukhin said that he probably would not have been so brave if he wasn't sure of the facts. His view is also shared by such distinguished scholars as Yuri Zhukov (known for his books not only in Russia but also abroad), Alexander Kolesnik and Alexei Plotnikov. Ilyukhin and his team have this year written a comprehensive review of the Main Prosecution's conclusions regarding the Katyn case from 1993; according to them these conclusions are completely without value.

Unfortunately other scholars are writing their books on payment from e.g. Poland and USA. Volkogonov has brought forth a variety of Russian archive documents. He took any documents he wanted in the archives, packed them down in suitcases and brought it all out of the country. These documents are now displayed in stands at the American Library of Congress. We have ourselves no possibility to see these documents here with us, but in the West it is completely free. Some other documents have been forwarded to countries like Finland and Sweden where they are now stored in different archives and where they now "interpret" our history in their "own" way.

Today they know for sure that Lenin's will is a falsified document. The sad thing is that it has already been released and published. There are also other fake documents which deal with Lenin’s illness and wants to show Lenin as more ill than he really was. There are papers which is said to have been completed by his doctors.

Today it is established that documents regarding Stalin’s claimed co-operation with the Czar's secret police (Okhranka) are also false. Stalin was never an Okhranka agent. Stalin was a genius person, although his person was very contradictory. He did a lot for the country; he initiated many large-scale programs like DnieproGES (the hydroelectric power at Dniepr) and the steel mill in Magnitogorsk. Everyone can be black-painted in different ways or represented as idiots; it is enough that you "reveal" that Stalin was an agent for the Okhranka. "I am certain that if we had access to the archives today, we would be able to expose many forgeries", says Ilyukhin.

Kaptar chimed in that despite that the information blockade is now being cracked, it is not that they are waiting for. They are waiting for something to happen on the highest level. He wondered if Ilyukhin has any administrative methods that he can use in order to influence events in his capacity of Member of the Duma.

Ilyukhin replied that he has exactly the same rights and powers as all other members of the Duma. It is indeed not so difficult to book a meeting with some of the country's highest officials, such as Gryzlov, or to discuss the matter with people at the Russian Ministry of Justice, but the new information has already been shown live when Ilyukhin appeared in the Duma in June. Those TV pictures were broadcasted automatically to the government in the Kremlin, the Minister Council and the whole of the Duma.

On April 19 the members of the Duma and history scholars held a round-table meeting concerning the latest findings around the Katyn case. They have also sent three letters to Medvedev; i.e. a long letter "about a week ago". In this letter the President is invited to share the new information and to take necessary measures. But the time that has passed since the letter was sent to him is too short. Ilyukhin also said that he will try to get a meeting with Naryshkin, who is chairman of the Russian Commission Against Historical Falsification and who belongs to the President's administration.

At the moment Ilyukhin does not want to forward his new evidence to the Main Prosecution. That place is a mess and it is straight away dangerous to forward documents to them. He says that he is afraid of a provocation, that these materials will disappear and never surface again. He does not believe in the conclusions made by the official experts. However, he does not doubt their professional competence, but if they are submitted to pressure from above there are no guarantees that their conclusions will be objective.

Ilyukhin said that at the moment they want to work with these documents themselves, only later the issue will be raised to the Main Prosecutor. According to Ilyukhin the reputation of Russia is at stake. Because who wants to co-operate with a country which falsifies its own history? Nobody. Such people are despised. Our pseudo patriots are tapped on their shoulders and heads by people, who deep down despise them. The Germans, the Americans and the Poles are true patriots who nurse every historical question. Just look at how persistently the Poles are pushing the Katyn issue. And how is it with us?

The more you familiarize yourself in all these questions the more you learn, and it is indeed abominable all that is happening. Forgeries have occurred in all times, both during the monarchy and also against the monarchy. There are examples of forged documents also abroad. In Great Britain they manufactured a false Comintern document in the name of a high positioned Comintern leader and planted the forgery in the English archives. The idea was to show that the Comintern carried out extensive work whose aim was to achieve a power shift in Great Britain. The document was then taken from the archives and based on it they asked the question how it was possible to co-operate with the Soviet Union "when the Soviets were doing what they did".

And how did the war against Iraq begin? Well, by an information war. At first they spread a lot of documents with disinformation that Iraq had nuclear and chemical weapons that would be dangerous for the whole mankind. This was how they motivated the American invasion of Iraq - and now they do not know how to get out of there.

According to Ilyukhin many false documents are inserted in files that are classified, marked with the text "Must not be de-classified", "Top secret" or "Of particular importance". Then these documents surface and begin to spread around. Documents that are not classified are more difficult to forge, since they are available to everybody.

Russian archive leaders claim that Ilyukhin is wrong, that the Katyn documents were stored in a "particular file" in a safe place at the Central Committee. And then they reveal themselves. After the round-table meeting about Katyn on April 19 and other press conferences, where new facts were presented which showed that the NKVD was not involved in the Katyn massacre, Medvedev ordered the Rosarkhiv to post the Katyn documents on the web page of the archive. There they posted the decision of the Politburo to execute more than 20 000 Poles, but none of the copies is signed and stamps are missing. They have whipped themselves with it.

If it really is the case that everybody is interested in the truth they should de-classify all documents stored at the FSB or at the Ministry of Defense. There is, among other things, a document where a German tells of the German involvement in the Katyn massacre, that it was his group that shot the Poles. And there are a lot of such documents in these archives. Putin and Medvedev are obviously afraid to admit their own errors and hasty action. It is always better to admit an error immediately, because then you avoid even graver consequences. They should admit that Ilyukhin and his group have new facts which must be verified, continue the investigation of the Katyn case and de-classify all documents. There are obviously no secrets for the Poles, so why is it so secret for us?

Ilyukhin concluded by saying that "it hurts for my own native land" and added that he is not having any agenda of his own in this case.