Ukraine During and After World War II

By | December 24, 2021

Following the agreements of the Yalta Conference, for which Poland ceded a large area of ​​its eastern part to the Soviet Union, the entire former Polish section of Volhynia and Podolia and eastern Galicia were aggregated to Ukraine (Voivodeships of Volhynia, Tarnopol and Stanisławów and the eastern part of Lviv). With the end of the Second World War, northern Bukovina and southern Bessarabia returned to Ukraine, taken from Romania in 1940 and reoccupied the following year (together with the rest of Bessarabia, which had been aggregated to the federated republic of Moldavia). For Ukraine military, please check

Finally, in 1945, Sub-Carpathian Russia was aggregated to Ukraine, following an agreement between the Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia, to which the region belonged. It is now called Transcarpathia (Zakarpatskaja Oblast ′). With the aforementioned annexations, the surface of the federated republic of Ukraine, which in 1939 was 445,300 sq km, has risen to 587,120 sq km; the population, from 30,960,200 residents (dens. 69.5 per sq. km.) rose to 40,548,300 residents (density 6 g, 1 per sq. km.); both data refer to 1939. For economic news see. ussr, in this App.

The autonomous republic of Crimea (v.), Which was part of Ukraine, was abolished in 1945 and transformed into an oblast ‘; the Tatars who lived there, constituting about 25% of the population, were transferred elsewhere.

History. – Regardless of the territorial variations mentioned above (see above and sub-Carpathian Russia, in this App.), Important events took place for the Ukrainian nation in the decade 1938-48. During 1938, Soviet Ukraine continued an intense purge activity against elements accused of Trotskyism and against other “dissident” and “saboteur” groups. The suicide of a senior official, Lyubčenko, was related to the discovery of “anti-Soviet activities” in which he would be involved. The elections, which took place after these purges, gave a very high percentage (97.8%) of voters in favor of the official candidates.

The start of the war between the USSR and Germany with its satellites was to have tragic consequences for Ukraine. The country was in fact all furrowed and devastated by war (for military operations see world war ; russia, in this Appendix). First there was the German advance and then the Russian counter-offensive; but during these great military operations, the front often had notable fluctuations. Many Ukrainian cities suffered terrible destruction. Among these Kiev, where ancient monuments of great value were reduced to ruins, Charkov, Odessa and countless smaller towns. Industries, dams, power plants were razed to the ground. The countryside was devastated. A part of the population withdrew in 1941 with the Soviet armies. A lot of Ukrainians were forced to work in Germany (Ostarbeiter). The Jewish population was almost entirely eradicated. The struggle between partisans and militarized formations in the service of the Germans gave rise to tragic and bloody episodes.

The victory of the Soviet armies returned to Ukraine the western borders obtained in 1939 by Poland and in 1940 by Romania. With the annexation of Sub-Carpathian Russia in 1945, the Ukraine achieved its highest national program under the Soviet aegis.

Immediately after the defeat of Germany, the reconstruction of the devastated regions began and vigorous measures were taken against elements accused of collaborating with the invaders.

On the international level, the Ukrainian Soviet Republic, although closely linked to the USSR both in domestic and foreign politics, is admitted to the UN as a separate state, with its own vote.

War damage. – The cities that suffered the most from an artistic point of view are Kiev and Černigov. In Kiev the famous Monastery of the Caves, the Cathedral of the Assumption, the churches of the Hospital (Bol′ničnaja), of St. Nicholas and the Trapeznaja have been completely destroyed. The church of S. Teodosio (17th century) was set on fire; and partially destroyed those of S. Pantelejmon and S. Aleksandr Nevskij. But the most important monument of the city, the cathedral of S. Sofia, of the century. XI, with its precious frescoes and mosaics, has fortunately remained intact. Particularly painful are the losses suffered by the museums and collections of Kiev: the museums of the Academy of Theology, all the collections and archives of the Monastery of the Caves, the museum of the history of architecture of Kiev, the building of university with its archives and various museums; Museums of Ukrainian art, Western European art and Eastern art were looted. In Černigov the cathedral of Saints Boris and Gleb and the church of S. Parascovia were demolished, both built in the 13th century. XII. We also remember among those most affected the museum of history and archeology of Cherson, where more than 150,000 objects were destroyed.

Ukrainian literature. – Among the Ukrainian poets who established themselves under the Soviet regime, Pavlo Tyčina, L. Pervomajskyj, M. Bažan, M. Ryl′skyj should be remembered. After the collections Sonja š ni klarneti (Solar clarinets, 1918), Zamist ‘sonetiv i oktav (In exchange for sonnets and octaves, 1919) and Plug (The plow, 1920) in which the revolution was seen on the level of a symbolism cosmic, as an apocalypse, in the spirit of A. Blok and A. Belyj, Tyčina passed to proletarian motifs in Viter z Ukraïfni (Vento dell’Ukraina, 1924), Č ernigiv (Černigov, 1931) and Partija sees (At the orders of the party, 1934), singing collectivism, the “Komsomol”, the heroes of the five-year plans, the red army, industry, in verses in which the echo of folklore is often perceived. The best of Bažan’s work is in the poems Bessmertja (Immortality, 1937), in which S. Kirov is recalled against the backdrop of the revolution, and Batki i sini (Fathers and sons, 1938). Ryl′skyj, after a Parnassian period, turned to a communist theme in the poem Marina (1933), on the era of Ukrainian feudalism, and in the collections Znak tereziv (The constellation of the balance, 1932) Küv (1934), Lito (Summer, 1936), Ukraïna (1938).

Among the prose writers we will remember Ju. Janovskyj, author of the novels Č otiri š abli (Four sabers, 1930) and Ver š niki (The knights, 1935), A. Kopylenko with Narod ž uetsja mixed (A city is born, 1932) on socialist reconstruction and Du ž e dobre ( Very well, 1936) of a school environment; Ju. Smolič with Na š i tajni (Our secrets, 1936) and Ditinstvo (Childhood, 1937); A. Golovka with Mati (1935); Petr Panč with Obloga no è i (Siege of the night, 1936) and Mir (Pace, 1937); Ol. Desnjak with Desnu perej š them batal joni (I han battalions crossed the Desna, 1937); S. Skljarenko with Š ljach na Kiîv (The road to Kiev, 1937). Dominant themes of the new Ukrainian prose are the memories of the civil war and the problems of Soviet society. A very original and brilliant figure was Mikola Chylvovyj, founder of the literary association “Vaplite”, dissolved in 1927, and soul of the magazines Literaturnyi armarok (Literary Fair, 1929) and Litfront (Literary front, 1930). The group of which Chvylovyj was the leader came into conflict with the cultural policy of the Soviet government and was opposed and dispersed; in the terminology of Ukrainian criticism for a time “Chvylevism” was equivalent to Trotskyism. In the theater, Alehsandr Kornejčuk with Zagibeleskadri (The defeat of the naval team) and Bogdan Chmelnickyj stood out ; Ivan Kočerga with Pisnja pro svi č ku (The song of the candle) on the fight against feudalism in the 17th century, Pide šne vernë š sja (If you go, don’t come back), Č asov š ík i kurica (The watchmaker and the hen); V. Suchodol’skvj with Karmeljuk, about the popular hero of the same name, and L. Juchvid with the light comedy Vesilja v Malinovci (Marriage in Malinovka).

Ukraine During and After World War II