Timothy Snyder threatens legal action against Ukrainian MP
Renowned historian and Yale Professor, Timothy Snyder has reacted angrily to what he considers a flagrant violation of his authors’ rights by Party of the Regions MP Vadim Kolisnichenko. He is demanding an apology and that all printed copies of the book be destroyed.
He states that he was surprised to find that his article from his New York Review of Books blog had been reprinted in a book entitled “The OUN and UPA: study in the creation of historical myths” [OUN – the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists; UPA – the Ukrainian Resistance Army].
Professor Snyder says that he does not usually mind his works being translated and published, on condition that they respect his author’s rights. He points out that all Ukrainian publications of his work have thus far done so.
The publishers of the book now in question – the International Anti-fascist Front and International “Dnipro-Sich” Charitable Fund (which Vadim Kolishnichenko is co-head of) approached him for permission to publish his material, but he turned them down.
He was therefore unpleasantly surprised to discover that the material had been published. They had also misled the readers on two scores, first by calling his blog entry an “academic article” and secondly by transcribing his name as “Schneider”.
Professor Snyder stresses that there are rules of civilized behaviour which must be observed especially in dealing with such sensitive and volatile issues as historical memory and historical policy. The behaviour of the publishers of The OUN and UPA: study in the creation of historical myths” damages both Ukraine and its image in the world.
He demands that both the publishers and Kolisnichenko publicly apologize, remove the book from the Internet and destroy all paper copies.
He warns that otherwise he will be forced to seek legal redress.