January 12, 2015

Professor Norman Davies - 'Ukraine: Not just a Province of Russia'

An excerpt from, "Visiting historian says Crimea’s annexation may strengthen Ukraine" by John Masanauskas, Herald Sun, April 10, 2014:
Prof Davies said that the key to Ukraine’s viability was the Black Sea port of Odessa.

“This is a largely Russian speaking city, but which is the guarantee to Ukraine to have access to the outside world, pipeline, shipping, trade and so on,” he said.

“Without that region Ukraine would be very hard put to survive against Russian pressures.”

Prof Davies, who has homes in England and Poland, said he lamented society’s declining interest in history.

My Polish father-in-law used to say “A nation without a knowledge of history is like a person without a memory”, and it’s very true,” he said.

“One of the problems in the Ukrainian crisis is that very few Westerners know their history, or if they know it, what they learn is what we call the Russian version of history.” 
“They (the Russians) are convinced that they are never the aggressors, that they never take lands away from peoples, they’re always restoring to themselves what somebody else took away.”

Prof Davies said that for the most part of its history Ukraine was not tied to Russia, but Russia patronisingly referred to Ukraine as “Little Russia”.
Video Title: UWS Open Fora - 'Ukraine: Not just a Province of Russia' (Full). Source: University of Western Sydney. Date Published: April 7, 2014. Description:
Equity and Diversity Open Fora explore a range of social issues of relevance to UWS and the Greater Western Sydney community. The forums are free and everyone is welcome to attend, staff, students and the general public.

The Fora, 'Ukraine -- Not just a Province of Russia' was held on 27 March 2014.

Guest Speaker: Professor Norman Davies CMG, Distinguished Scholar in European History, Visiting Fellow, Clare Hall, Cambridge University.
The lecture begins at 4:45.