Belarusians rose up against the heir of the fascist regime.
Chairman of the last legitimate Supreme Council of Belarus Siamion Sharetski, who now lives in California, US, and actively participates in the actions of the Belarusian diaspora to support the revolution in his homeland.
In an interview with Charter97.org, the politician told how Belarus can return to the democratic path of development, and why Lukashism should be punished and prohibited in the same way as fascism.
- How do you assess the current situation in Belarus? How can you characterize the regime that has set root in our country?
- The regime there is dictatorial, it was not established today, it was established, in essence, from the beginning of Lukashenka's rule. You remember that literally more than a year had passed, and he announced that he wanted to establish the order that existed in Germany during Hitler's time. What else could you expect?
When I became chairman of the Supreme Council, virtually all media were subordinate to the authorities, additional armed formations had already been created that were subordinate only to Lukashenka and, regardless of any Constitution, could detain anyone, search, and so on. It was all there.
You remember that as soon as Zakharanka, Hanchar and others left Lukashenka, seeing his crimes and attack on democratic foundations, he disposed of them. This man has had blood on his hands for a long time.
It's just a pity and it is not clear why the Russians support him. In general, they can be understood, although I say "incomprehensible", because a similar regime has been established there. Because all these dictators have their own international agreement, unwritten, unspoken. They support each other in committing crimes, providing cover for each other.
- How did Belarusians show themselves in these conditions? How do you assess the continuous protests that have been going on for over 180 days?
- I have always had a very high opinion of my Belarusian people. I am already old, and I remember the years of the war. And I remember how our seemingly calm and reasonable people behaved during the war. They immediately became indignant and took up arms against the invaders.
Now they say in surprise "ah, ah, Belarusians" ... But for me it is clear: when Belarusians over the years understood who was in charge, they rose to fight.
- As once against the fascists?
- Of course. So this is the heir to the fascist regime, he himself declared this.
- In one of your public speeches, you said: "It is useless to persuade a dictator, he will not leave until he feels that the shit hit the fan" ...
- Correct. Do you remember at least one example in history when a tough dictator voluntarily left? Some such dictators seem to have left, but they were representatives of "soft" dictatorships. They left, yes, but the dictators who pretend to be Hitler's heirs ... What can we talk about?
- How can you get Lukashenka to leave?
- You know, I am a bad advisor in this respect, because I am still far away. I can only say: it is necessary to somehow influence the army, so to speak. Not necessary military units - pull some serious formations over to your side, otherwise it is difficult to fight with dictators of such a type as Lukashenka or Putin with simple demonstrations.
- By the way, at the beginning of the Belarusian revolution you turned to the security officials and urged them to hear the voice of conscience, not to dirty their hands and not to be complicit in the crimes of the regime ...
- You know, appeals alone are not enough, now we need to work specifically. I will emphasize: specifically. Let me remind you once again that once Leo Trotsky turned the Petrograd garrison over to his side, to the side of the revolution, not only with slogans and appeals, but also with direct work. And he was not alone in doing this.
- In Belarus, a lot of leaks of secret information from the security forces have recently begun to appear. Officials sign under an open letter demanding Lukashenka's resignation, more than 600 people have already signed ... Can we say that some part of the security apparatus and the "vertical" is already hesitating?
- Quite right! Yes, you can say that, but to speed up this process, you need to work.
What are hundreds of people? The point is that the process should go at the level of colonels, maybe generals - that is who should side with the people.
Remember, in that address to the security officials, I urged: "Take the side of the truth, take the side of the people." And by the way, I will not stop. I am trying to influence them - I cannot say in what ways - but I will try.
On Sunday (February 7 - edit.) I sent a book to print, which will be called "Lukashism and its Crimes." I will distribute it.
- Please tell us more about this book.
- I collected all my speeches, because I warned that this would happen. If you remember, in September 1996, I had an article published by Narodnaya Volya, I turned to Belarusians and told people that there was a smell of fascism in the republic, be vigilant.
Then, I wrote the second article in November 1996, why it was impossible to vote for the draft Constitution proposed by Lukashenka. At that time he was laying the "legal" basis for the dictatorial regime. And then I was not the only one who spoke, then other deputies of the Supreme Council also spoke. Moreover, at that time, in November, Valer Tsikhinya also spoke, being the chairperson of the Constitutional Court.
Later, I don’t know for what reasons, he didn’t give the go-ahead for the impeachment. Not he personally, but the Constitutional Court, of which he was the chairman. It will all be in the book.
- We have been talking about the internal reserves for the revolution in Belarus so far. But there are also external allies. Have you asked the leaders of democratic countries to help the Belarusian people?
- Not only me, all of us here (Belarusians abroad - edit.) are working in this direction.
- How do you assess the sanctions that have already been introduced against the Lukashenka regime?
- They are insufficient. They are still insufficient. As far as I know, I'm not the only one here, but many - and maybe not so much me as another group of people, but I'm up to date - are working on this.
- In your opinion, what should be the final sanctions that would really affect the situation in Belarus?
- I just think that the sanctions should be such that Lukashenka starts spinning round like on a hot frying pan. These are the sanctions that should be!
I am simply outraged by the way the Russians reacted calmly to the fact that Putin gave one and a half billion dollars to Lukashenka without any permission from the legislative body. This is the example of a dictator. How so? After all, the budget in any civilized state can only be disposed of by the legislative body.
If Putin can do this without a legislative body, then what can we talk about? What kind of civilization, what kind of democracy? This is the same dictator as Lukashenka, so they support each other. Lukashenka, on the eve of the elections, in fact, poured a lot of mud on the Russian leadership - and they forgave him everything, this champion of the Hitler order.
- Do you think the administration of the new US President Joe Biden will pursue a more consistent policy towards dictatorial regimes?
- There is hope that he will be harsher. That he will not say that Putin is his friend, as Trump did. Trump simply said that Putin was his friend. Although he took some measures there, but ...
In my opinion, Joe Biden is a more impressive politician, and he seems more consistent.
- Recently it became known that the European Union has developed a document providing for the 4th stage of sanctions against Lukashenka, including the disconnection of the Belarusian banking system off SWIFT, and the freezing of assets of large enterprises. How do you assess this?
-I welcome this. Those who say: what about the people and so on are wrong ...
We must understand that the one and a half billion dollars that Putin gave, he gave not to the people. He gave to the dictator to maintain his regime. It was not the people who were given money. And it would not be to the detriment of the people if no one gave money to the dictator.
If he had not given, then the dictator would have had nothing to support his security officials - and that would have been right. In essence, the fact that he gave such a sum of money is a crime against the Belarusian people. And against his own people too, because Putin took this money away from the Russians who are by no means prosperous, a sufficient number of Russians live below the poverty line. He took this money and gave it to support the dictatorial regime in another state.
- In your opinion, how his support for the dictatorial regime in Minsk may end for Putin?
-The point is that it’s not only about supporting the dictatorial regime. I would say that there is a suppression of the democratic movement headed by Alexei Navalny, and people feel this.
And if they temporarily stopped (mass actions - edit.), this does not mean that they dropped the subject. It's not like that at all. Navalny today has become, I would say, not only an example of courage, but also the conscience of democracy, the conscience of freedom.
- You are publishing a book about Lukashism and its crimes. Fascist criminals at one time appeared before the Nuremberg Tribunal, modern dictators - before the court in the Hague ...
- In my book I say, among other things, that Bolshevism was not condemned in due time. And now it has metastasized in the form of a dictatorial regime - both in Russia and in Belarus.
I talked about this, and write about it in the book. Bolshevism had to be condemned, because in the first period of the Second World War, Bolshevism was essentially an ally of fascism. And since it was not condemned, then its metastases did not disappear anywhere.
After all, fascism was not just condemned, it was also legally prohibited, and when Lukashenka gave an interview to the German newspaper Handelsblatt on November 23, 1995, this interview was not published there, but here, in Belarus, it was broadcast twice on the radio. And in Germany they did not publish it, because it is forbidden there to propagate fascist ideas.
- What, in your opinion, should the trial of Lukashenka and his entourage look like?
- You know, this is not a question for me. I will do what I can ... And already where and how the trial will take place ...
I only write in my book that Bolshevism must be condemned with its current metastases. Dictatorial regimes should be condemned - both in Russia and in Belarus. Moreover, a person should be convicted who openly declared that he wants to establish the same order in Belarus as it was in Germany under Hitler.
- You often compare the Lukashenka regime with the Hitler regime.
- I do not compare, I say that it was he who said that he wants to establish such a regime. I am not comparing.
But Lukashenka’s actions, beatings of people half to death - there are even those who died from beatings! - speak for themselves. What is it? This essentially means that whatever you call it: Lukashism, fascism - whatever you want to call it, but these are birds of a feather. These are the same methods of dealing with people.
- Remember, they said about the struggle of the Belarusian partisans: the invaders' ground was burning under their feet. Is this principle still relevant now?
- I am now writing an article and I recall this partisan times, those people and their principles.
I worked at that time when former partisan commanders were in charge of Belarus. For example, the former commissar of the Pinsk partisan brigade Arkhip Pratasenya presented me with a candidate card for joining the party. I'm writing an article about him now. This person is no longer there, but I owe him a lot - not only because he handed me the candidate's card, but for his behavior, his principles, his respect for people who thought sensibly. At one time he could not get a higher education, but how respectfully he treated specialists of the national economy, doctors, teachers, other intellectuals!
- How did it happen that a Hitler fan appeared and seized power in a country with partisan traditions?
- This happens in history, people sometimes forget the events of the past, which should be learned.
In 1996, I repeat, I reminded people of this. Although I could no longer speak either on TV or on the radio, because everything was already in Lukashenka's hands. But as far as I could, through the newspaper Narodnaya Volya, I warned the Belarusians.
And I am very grateful to the editor of this newspaper. He made it possible for me and others to address people. I cannot say that we did everything then, maybe we didn’t finish something, we didn’t complete the job somewhere, but we tried, at least.
We already understood what this would lead to if a man with dictatorial manners made his way to the highest post in the country. Moreover, you will understand that all this was laid down in his childhood. He didn't just jump out like a bat out of hell. He, in essence, was prepared by his entire previous life for just this type of government.
Look at the biographies of Hitler, Stalin and the like. They are all dictators, if not from childhood, then from adolescence, from youth. They were brought up in some kind of perverted, I would say, form.
- After the rigged elections on August 9, many states have officially denied Lukashenka's legitimacy. Can we say that he became completely illegitimate back in 1996?
- Of course, everything is correct. We said so then when there was a "referendum" on November 24, 1996. I then spoke and said that a coup was taking place in the country, and this was recorded, among other things, on television, and by Russian television journalists.
He has actually been illegitimate since 1996, and now all the more this has been confirmed.
- In one of your public speeches, you compared Lukashenka with the imposter of Tushino, also known as False Dmitry II. Why such an analogy?
- Do you remember how he held his inauguration? Thieves. It is simply surprising that the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, without waiting for the election results, congratulated him on his victory.
This is a terrible thing. I think he is aware of what he has done. He congratulated the man with blood on his hands, who publicly declared that he was a champion of Hitler's order. And this is the Patriarch ... It's creepy, it's just an unprecedented case.
- What would you like to say to ordinary Belarusians, who continue to protest against this hypocrisy in one form or another every day and demand the resignation of the illegal ruler?
- I wish every Belarusian family health, I wish you happiness, success, prosperity, peace in every home. All that you can only wish for the kindest, closest people.
I wish this and, of course, I wish that a real, democratic order, a democratic system would be restored in Belarus as soon as possible.