The Dark Trend Of Martial Law, Vigilantism and Public Humiliation In Ukraine

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Sunday, Feb 26, 2023 - 12:35 PM

In a war setting the habit of governments is often to revert to the most ugly and barbaric forms of judgement and punishment, depending on the level of corruption among the officials in charge, so it's not surprising to see many of these dark behaviors rising within Ukraine.  However, for the past year the violence of martial law and vigilantism by Ukrainian soldiers has been mostly suppressed in western media and social media.  In fact, posting video evidence of these activities would often get you banned on websites like Facebook and Twitter.  

With the changing of management at Twitter, more and more examples are beginning to surface of one particular form of punishment, which involves strapping people to street signs and lamp posts, gagging them and sometimes stripping off their clothes and beating them.  

Pro-Ukrainian media openly admits to the practice, though they try to suggest that the public humiliation is being enacted by random anonymous "vigilantes."  However, there are videos featuring what appear to be Ukrainian soldiers and others wearing identifying armbands involved in these attacks.  It is hard to say what crimes the victims supposedly committed.  And not surprisingly, Ukraine media defends the actions, comparing them to "hanging a shoplifter's photo on a wall of shame" at a retail store.

Accusations that lead to public humiliation include looting and theft, but accusations are not proof.  In many instances punishment has been pursued against men who do not want to be conscripted into the war.  In some situations, men who were only working in Ukraine under temporary citizenship are being order to the front.  Rumors abound that authorities are hunting down fighting age men in the streets and interrogating them.  Punishment is swift if they don't work in a job listed as essential to the war effort.

But the public humiliation tactics are not just for young men escaping war.  Some are punished simply for selling alcohol.  Others are punished for speaking against Ukraine on social media, which is labeled "collaboration" with Russia.  Some are just children.

These people might be the lucky ones, though.  US State Department reports in 2020 document a wide array of human rights abuses by the Ukrainian government before the war was sparked and NATO made Ukraine's image a priority.  This is not to say that Russia is not also accused of its fair share of rights violations, it's just rare to find such crimes being discussed in the west when it comes to Ukraine.  

Whether or not an individual deserves this kind of treatment is a separate debate, and frankly, an impossible one.  This is what due process is supposed to achieve - fair justice rather than spontaneous punishment which might be used against the wrongly accused.  Without it, we'll never know if corporal actions are meant to prevent crime, or if they are meant to oppress and terrorize the population.  The point is, Ukraine has abandoned all due process for the sake of expediency at best, or for the sake of tyranny at worst.