By John Helmer, Moscow
This is not a story about the past, nor about blaming the crimes of the fathers and grandfathers on their sons and daughters, or granddaughters.
This is a story of the moment when the crimes of the past and the criminal intent today turn out to be the same thing: Russian-hating today is a race crime, just as Jew-hating and Pole-hating were crimes, and still are. No Canadian foreign minister or member of parliament, no Canadian Mountie, no Dudley Do-Right should be culpable of such crimes.
Chrystia Freeland (lead image, left), Canada’s Foreign Minister, stands for the same race hatred as her grandfather, Michael Chomiak (centre) stood for. He profited from his crimes by the theft of property belonging to Jews in Cracow and Chelm, the two towns where Chomiak ran newspapers on behalf of Emil Gassner, head of press for the German administration of occupied Poland known as the Generalgouvernement (German) and Generalne Gubernatorstwo (Polish), with headquarters in Cracow.
Under cover for the Galicians, under pressure from Germans, Chomiak (rear, centre) at a Cracow party hosted by Gassner (in uniform, front right). Source: http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Canadian-Foreign-Minister-Scapegoats-Russian-Hackers-for-Exposing-Nazi-Grandfather-20170309-0015.html
Chomiak moved west with Gassner and the retreating German Army, continuing his Cracow publication from Vienna until he moved to Bavaria. There he found employment with US Arrmy Intelligence, becoming an operative in clandestine US military and propaganda operations against the Soviet government in Kiev and Moscow. For details, read this and this.
Freeland continues those operations today, with Canadian government resources. She profits personally by attracting votes for her parliamentary election, and popularity ratings as a wannabe prime minister by cultivating the same Galician view of Russians, Poles, Jews – they don’t belong in the country her grandfather tried to cleanse with murder, and she is trying to cleanse with Canadian Government arms, combat trainers, and Canadian Government bank loans totalling $400 million.
Chomiak went on with his Great Galicia campaign after he left employment by the German Army for employment by the US Army. He continued the campaign when he moved to Canada. He and Freeland never believed for a minute, nor can Freeland say now, that Galicia isn’t the Ukraine; that Ukraine cannot be Greater Galicia; or that no Polish territory belongs to Galicia or to Ukraine. The Polish Government will shortly request officially that Freeland clarify herself on these points.
US Army Intelligence and Canadian immigration files, compiled between 1945 and 1950, will in due course confirm the truth about Chomiak’s war against the Russians, Poles, and Jews. It is already clear that Freeland has lied about that repeatedly. Calling me names, and characterizing others (Jews, Ukrainians, Poles, Americans) investigating Freeland as pro-Russians, disinformation agents, Kremlin stooges, and Putin trolls is Exhibit No. 1 in the case for the prosecution of the race hate crime which Freeland is trying to cover up.
Freeland’s new defence to the lying about Chomiak, which she has persuaded her supporters in the Canadian media and in the Canadian political establishment to endorse, is that Chomiak was compelled to “collaborate”, while secretly he aided the Ukrainian resistance. This too is a lie. Polish government investigations are under way; the Jewish Holocaust Museum files already show that the only Ukrainians Chomiak assisted were even more motivated by race hatred and blood lust than the German Army and the Generalgouvernement.
Salad days for Chomiak (rear row, left) with a German officer and other officials of the Generalgouvernement in Cracow. The source for the photograph is given as this interview with a Ukrainian-Canadian, Alex Boykowich, reported here: http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Canadian-Foreign-Minister-Scapegoats-Russian-Hackers-for-Exposing-Nazi-Grandfather-20170309-0015.html Boykowich says he got this photograph (and the one above) from the Chomiak Collection of papers in the Alberta province archives, accession number #85.191. http://www.archives.gov.ua/Eng/canada.php No other publication by Boykowich has been located.
Today Freeland and the journalists who defend her, are collaborators in a programme of criminal race hatred against Russians. One of the greatest of all Canadians, Glenn Gould, demonstrated what he thought of such pressure to collaborate in playing the Canadian part in the US war against Russians. As a 24-year old virtuoso pianist in the spring of 1957, Gould was told by Lester Pearson, then Canada’s foreign minister, not to perform in Moscow and Leningrad as he had been invited to do. Pearson had been given his running order from Washington. Gould refused point-blank.
In later life Gould gave Canadians, Americans, Russians , Poles, and Jews this piece of advice on resistance. “It’s true that I’ve driven through a number of red lights, but on the other hand I’ve stopped at a lot of green ones I’ve never had credit for.”
Here’s a verbatim file of the correspondence I’ve had with Freeland’s supporters, Canadian reporters of the mainstream media, and former Canadian ambassador Jeremy Kinsman, when I asked them to substantiate their claims about me, or give me a right of reply.
Robert Fife (right) is the Ottawa bureau chief for the Toronto Globe and Mail. On March 6 he and his newspaper reported that “Moscow-based writer John Helmer” and several others had made “allegations…against Ms. Freeland’s grandfather… The articles say Mr. Chomiak and his wife left Poland with the retreating German army in 1944 and surrendered to the Americans in Bavaria where they were placed in a U.S. military facility.” Fife added Freeland’s defence: “Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, who is being targeted by allegations in pro-Moscow websites that her maternal Ukrainian grandfather was a Nazi collaborator, warned Monday that Canada should expect to be the focus of Russian disinformation campaigns similar to what is happening in Europe and the United States.”
In a subsequent exchange of emails Fife acknowledged he had not read my articles, didn’t know the wartime evidence, and hadn’t contacted any of the Canadian, Ukrainian, Polish or US sources for Chomiak’s record and Freeland’s knowledge of it. I asked Fife: “I’d like to respond to the lies about me you and your colleagues are running from Freeland. Will you get your op ed editor to make contact and invite me to do an op ed piece?” He replied:
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I responded: “If Ms. Hassan invites me, I will be glad to write a short piece for the G&M.” Fife didn’t answer, and Hassan sent an auto-mail indicating she was out of her office.
David Walmsley (right) is the Globe and Mail’s editor in chief. He had been managing editor earlier, then head of news at the state Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). In January he published his credo to readers: “It is the job of a journalist to ask questions, to ensure accountability and, when necessary, to expose injustices. It is the job of an editor to give reporters the time to pursue their instincts with tenacity, without losing sight of the public interest – and without compromising our commitment to fairness.”
Walmsley was asked to explain why he was allowing one-sided coverage of the Freeland story, and no right of reply.
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Walmsley replied, and this was the last word from the Globe and Mail:
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The Ottawa Citizen has a readership of roughly a quarter of the Globe and Mail’s – 550,000 compared to 2 million. The publications are owned by different companies. On March 8, the Citizen published an article entitled “How the Russians tried to smear Chrystia Freeland”, written by Terry Glavin. Glavin reported “the attack on Freeland began with dirty insinuations that first entered circulation in a collaboration between two men who are known to have teamed up in the past on what you might call Kremlin-friendly smear campaigns. One of the men is an eccentric Moscow-based freelancer, John Helmer. Back in the 1980s, in Washington, D.C., Helmer found himself at the centre of a maelstrom of allegations that he was a KGB asset. He left for Russia almost immediately thereafter, and has worked in Moscow ever since. The other man is the notorious far-right Luxembourg-based Polish ‘analyst’, Stanislas Balcerac.”
Glavin (with Kalashnikov in Afghanistan, 2010) reports to editor, Michelle Richardson (centre) and deputy editor, Keith Bonnell (right). I emailed them: “Your publication makes unsubstantiated and defamatory claims about me. No attempt was made to contact me nor to check the details. I’d like to respond to the lies about me, and do so in the form of a short op ed piece. Do you agree?” They don’t reply.
Another former Canadian government official now making a living as a journalist in Ottawa is Alan Freeman. Before he joined the government he worked as a correspondent for the Globe and Mail in Berlin, London, and Washington. He is now a stringer for the Washington Post, and moonlights as “Honorary Senior Fellow at the University of Ottawa’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs.” The school secretary says Freeman doesn’t have a regular office and isn’t often seen on the premises.
On March 9 Freeman reported in the Washington Post a story headlined: “Russia should stop calling my grandfather a Nazi, says Canada’s foreign minister”. He wrote: “articles about Freeland’s family history have been spread over the Internet by Putin-leaning websites such as the Russian Insider and the New Cold War.” He meant my articles. He added: “Many of the articles appear to have been inspired [sic] by John Helmer, a Moscow-based journalist who was described by Jeremy Kinsman, a former Canadian ambassador to Russia, as a notorious ‘conspiracy theorist’.”
I emailed Freeman with four questions:
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Freeman replied by ignoring the first and second questions and did not substantiate that he had read the articles he referred to. Instead, he said:
I then emailed Freeman’s superiors at the Washington Post:
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There has been no acknowledgement; no further word from Freeman.
Jeremy Kinsman has confirmed he was the source of Freeman’s “conspiracy” quote. In a long diplomatic career Kinsman served in the Canadian embassy in Washington, and as ambassador in Russia, Italy, the UK, and the European Union. Since his retirement from the service, he has worked in US and Canadian think-tanks, and is a member of the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Foreign Policy Council.
By email Kinsman acknowledged: “Your reporting is what it is, also aggressively assertive of your point of view – which in international affairs (I haven’t seen your Russian business reporting) is frequently propelled by a conspiracy story line. If the unearthing of a conspiracy reveals evidence of one, it is great investigative stuff. But if it doesn’t convince, it remains a theory. I’m not exactly sure what I told Alan Freeman, but I probably did say you are a ‘conspiracy theorist.’ You may recoil at the term – but what else is your reporting on MH 17, for example? When you say categorically, ‘Freeland is lying’,… it’s worse that [sic] conspiracy theory. It’s an attack.”
Asked for the evidence of conspiracy theory, Kinsman wrote back: “I willingly acknowledge that you believe you are on to truths in what you charge, but I consider that the evidence is not supportive.”
There are two Canadian groups who qualify as the dogs who aren’t barking supportively; they are the clue to how this tale will play out in Ottawa. They are the Canadian Jewish community, and the Canadian government led by Prime Minister Trudeau.
Sheldon Kirshner (right) is a Toronto-based journalist. He is the son of Holocaust survivors from Lodz, Poland; he was born in 1946 at Bad Reichenhall, on the opposite side of Bavaria from Bad Worishofen, where Chomiak was working for the US Army, and where Freeland’s mother was born. Kirshner and his parents were genuine refugees when they emigrated to Canada. Kirshner then worked for most of his career at the Canadian Jewish News. He now writes for the Times of Israel, which describes itself as a “Jerusalem-based online newspaper founded in 2012 to document developments in Israel, the Middle East and around the Jewish world.” The newspaper staff is also based in Israel. Kirshner is a contributor from Canada. The newspaper doesn’t represent Jewish organizations as such. It has “no partisan political affiliation. It seeks to present the news fair-mindedly and offers a wide range of analysis and opinion pieces.”
Kirshner’s March 9 piece is headlined; “Canadian Foreign Minister Should Acknowledge The Truth”. His lead asks two questions: “Why can’t Chrystia Freeland acknowledge the truth? Why can’t she come clean?” He refers to my reporting by name. He adds: “the story has belatedly been picked up by Canadian newspapers, though the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, strangely enough, has chosen to ignore it in its TV and radio newscasts.” He dismisses the Kremlin plot line from Freeland and her media supporters. “This is not about Russia. It’s about a man who was a vital cog in the Nazi machinery of death during the Holocaust. Freeland is an intelligent and worldly woman and should have no trouble recognizing and acknowledging the truth. She owes this to her constituents in Toronto and to all Canadians.”
This doesn’t exactly answer Kirshner’s question – why does he think Freeland can’t come clean? Kirshner responded but put his reply off the record.
The mainstream Israeli newspapers have either ignored Freeland’s record – Haaretz, Maariv, Yedioth Ahronoth — or in the case of Jerusalem Post, taken Freeland’s side, repeating the “Russian smear campaign” headline, with which The Post led on March 10.
Prime Minister Trudeau has reported he’s currently on high alert for signs of anti-semitism in Canada. On March 8 Trudeau issued this tweet:
Trudeau has yet to take a stand against the Chomiak type of anti-semitism, and Freeland’s defence of it. The only member of the Canadian cabinet to speak audibly in her defence is the Minister of Environment, Catherine McKenna.
But she has done so through her husband, Scott Gilmore (right with his wife). He is a columnist for the financially struggling Canadian outlet, Maclean’s. On March 8 Gilmore and Maclean’s led with the title, “Russia’s coming attack on Canada: The smear job on Chrystia Freeland is only the start. Why Canada is a logical next target in Moscow’s desperate clandestine war”. Here’s what Gilmore had to say about me: “the Russian Embassy has already been trying to discredit Canada’s Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, an outspoken advocate for continued sanctions, with a smear job about her grandparents.” Gilmore didn’t say which Russian embassy he was thinking of, and he didn’t call the Ottawa one to check their relationship with me. He didn’t call me.
Gilmore has been in the Canadian services so he knows how to do these things. Gilmore also knows how to sell Canadian arms for state-organized pogroms. In the 1990s he was at the Canadian Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, during the war on East Timor by the Indonesian Army. Gilmore’s account of his activity at the time omits to say whether he was serving as a regular diplomat or an intelligence agent under diplomatic cover.
According to this academic study published in 2003, the job Gilmore did in the 1990s, and his Canadian colleagues in Jakarta for years earlier, “facilitated and legitimized Indonesia’s occupation vis-à-vis diplomatic actions at the UN, pro-Indonesian foreign policy, direct investment in Indonesia, bilateral aid, and authorization of military export permits, thus in effect ‘aiding and abetting’ the near-genocide.”
A Carleton University study of Canadian commercial and arms trade with Indonesia when Gilmore was posted there says business was so lucrative, “relations with Indonesia were accorded a higher priority than the fate of the East Timorese.” When Canadian officials declared they had human rights concerns for the embattled Timorese, they turned out to be “high on the rhetoric…low on the substantive action.” At the same time, Gilmore and his associates were busy selling the Indonesian Army weapons and ammunition, “assiduously avoid[ing] punitive measures such as the arms embargoes taken against Indonesia by other governments.” Read more.
Gilmore went on to establish an organization called “Peace Dividend Trust”, now called “Building Markets”. It is paid for by the Clinton family foundation, the US Agency for International Development, the Canadian, Australian, Norwegian and British governments.
I asked Maclean’s chief editors, Alison Uncles and Colin Campbell, if they would allow me a right of reply to Gilmore’s “unsubstantiated, false and defamatory claims and innuendoes about me and my work”. Minister McKenna was copied with the request because she is closer to the Freeland tale her husband has published than I am to the Russian government. McKenna acknowledged receiving the email; Maclean’s did not.
Had I been given the right of reply, there is one paragraph I would have added to what I have already published as a reporter. It’s a personal one. For a great many of us, we cannot have known grandparents and other family because Freeland’s grandfather and his associates were so successful at destroying them in the west of Ukraine, the southeast of Poland. Freeland is now doing the same in the east.
Between Freeland and the Galicians and me, there are no Russians. There is blood.