"Ivan Katchanovski at the University of Ottawa has made a life-long career of attacking “Ukrainian nationalism” and takes this one step further by spreading the myth, popular in Putinist propaganda, that Right Sector murdered the Euromaidan protestors (not the regime’s Berkut riot police). When he said this at the University of Alberta he was accused of being a political technologist and not an academic"
By professor Taras Kuzio ( https://archive.is/wip/PJdiN
"Pro-Russian Agenda and Bias"
" Katchanovski’s political agenda prompts him to try and “prove” that the snipers in the Euromaidan were primarily from the Euromaidan protesters and “far right.” One of the first questions that springs to mind is, why has only Katchanovski been able to find purported supporting evidence if it truly is “publicly available, but unreported, suppressed, or misrepresented.” As Marples too has pointed out, the photos used in Katchanovski’s paper are from videos and, therefore, are very blurry. This makes it practically impossible to see snipers, never mind ascertain who they were. There certainly could have been some protesters with guns, although in all of the videos and photos that I have collected, there are only a handful of armed people and these are standing among protesters on the streets – not “shooters” firing from roofs and hotel windows.
Alternative Hypotheses Ignored
There are various additional explanatory hypotheses for the shootings that Katchanovski never even considers, such as the chaos that results during pitched battles or the collateral damage that results from the actions of different police, Security Service (SBU) units and vigilantes (some of whom had ties to organized crime) involving weapons. Also, the possibility of Russian actors is for some reason never even entertained by Katchanovski. Ukayinska Pravda journalist Serhiy Leshchenko in his new book titled “Mezhyhirya Syndrome” about Yanukovych’s presidency investigates the influence and involvement of President Vladimir Putin and Russian intelligence operatives in Ukraine. Even Putin has admitted that his forces assisted in Yanukovych’s fleeing from Ukraine.
A Western journalist in Kyiv that I interviewed (who desired to remain anonymous) heard from a number of sources that some of the snipers were from Russia. “One source from the presidential administration told me several times in December through February that Yanukovych had brought in mercenaries from Russia and had them based somewhere in central Kyiv, adding that it was not sure what the arrangement was and whether Putin had a direct role in providing them, but it was clear they were ready to shoot at the protestors if needed.” The role of “The Family” was also a factor in the snipers’ activities and later in the violence in the Donbas: “After the sniper shootings took place, this source said he heard from good sources that Yanukovych’s elder son gave the de facto orders to shoot. A second oligarch source said Yanukovych’s eldest son ‘Sasha’ gave the orders to shoot as he was sitting in the situation room.” On leaked intercepts of police radio traffic the words “Sasha, Sasha” are audible. The Western journalist investigating law enforcement officers asked who the snipers in black were, and the Interior Ministry and SBU claimed they were not their men and that they didn’t know who they were.’
A genuinely “academic” paper would have tried to objectively analyze and present these different scenarios and then in his conclusions provide and explain what the author took to be the most likely scenario. Katchanovski instead seems to proceed in the opposite direction insofar as his paper on the massacre caused by snipers appears to have reached a foregone conclusion that is politically driven.
Poor Academic Knowledge and Conspiracy Theories
Still other elements of his paper also do not stand up to scrutiny as reflected in the following three examples. First, Katchanovski criticizes the prosecutor-general’s office for not investigating the murders in a thorough manner. But as is well known, this office is over-manned, incompetent and corrupt, and it has never been able to investigate high-level crimes such as the murder of journalist Georgi Gongadze in 2000 or presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko’s poisoning in 2004. Why should the Euromaidan murders be any different? Second, Katchanovski makes a rather unusual claim for anybody studying Ukraine that there is no written order by Yanukovych ordering the killings. But, as is also well known, such tactics were the norm in the USSR and continue in Ukraine with “telefone pravo” (telephone law, or orders given over the telephone). Orders, and especially controversial orders, are not written down in societies without the rule of law. It is, therefore, not surprising that there is no written order as to who sent police special forces to repress the Orange Revolution on 28 November 2004; there is no documentary evidence to prove who gave the orders to conduct massive election fraud in that year’s election; and there are no documents to show who gave the order to poison former president Yushchenko.
Third, a conspiracy mindset was very deeply ingrained in the former USSR and in post-Soviet Russia and Ukraine where cover-ups, poor investigations and concealed evidence are pointed to as evidence of the existence of conspiracies. Katchanovski’s paper on the snipers massacre follows in this pattern. The conspiracy mindset is heavily prevalent in eastern Ukrainian and in Russian political culture such that Yanukovych, the Party of Regions, the Communist Party and Russian politicians believe that the Georgian Rose and Ukrainian Orange Revolutions as well as the Euromaidan were the supposed product of Western backed putschs.
That Katchanovski’s paper on the snipers massacre is politically driven may be seen in his conclusion when he provides what Marples believes is an argument “that appears to fall closely into line with the RT version of events disseminated in the Russian Federation.” Katchanovski claims the murders of protesters “represented a violent overthrow of the government in Ukraine and a major human rights crime” committed by “elements” of the Euromaidan and “far-right.” His position ignores the crucial detail that the far right did not come to power after the Euromaidan came to power, and that they lost two pre-term elections in May and October 2014. More importantly, Yanukovych had been preparing to flee throughout the third week of February as can be seen in the security camera videos at his Mezhyhirya palace that he left behind. His flight from Kyiv was, therefore, not in response to a threat expressed by Euromaidan activist Volodymyr Parasiuk from the Maydan stage—who, incidentally, was not a member of Pravyy Sektor. Katchanovski (like Russian statements and propaganda) ignores three other important factors: (1) Yanukovych was impeached by a vote of 328 to zero by parliament: (2) the Party of Regions condemned Yanukovych; and (3) Yatseniuk was appointed prime minister by a vote of 374 to 1.
As these facts demonstrate beyond any doubt, nobody “seized” power, and the Euromaidan was not an illegal “putsch.” If a Ukrainian president dies or is incapacitated, there is provision in the constitution for the parliamentary chairman to become “acting president” until new elections are held. There is, however, no constitutional provision for what action should be taken if the president abandons his job! "
Putinphiles & silent Ukrainian professors in Canadian Universities, Taras Kuzio
"Taras Kuzio, dismissed Katchanovski personally as an anti-Ukrainian, noting that his opinions mirrored those of Vladimir Putin and Russian propaganda organs."