Discussion and decisions at the Ukrainian Congress Committee of
America (UCCA) Executive Board Meeting on January 25, 2003
Editor's Note: There are many people around the world who are interested
in knowing about and supporting the events, activities, and commemorations
there will be in 2003 regarding the 70th anniversary of the Ukrainian
Famine-Genocide of 1932-1933 (HOLODOMOR).
Several Ukrainian organizations in the United States, Canada, Ukraine
and other countries, including the Ukrainian World Congress, have
indicated they will be sponsoring various activities and events during 2003.
As part of the work to document the various activities that are planned
the following information is presented regarding the outstanding work of
the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA). Future reports
about the activities of other organizations will be prepared and
The following is an edited version, in an outline format, by ArtUkraine.com
Information Service, of the portion of UCCA Executive Director Tamara
Gallo's recent report that presented the six major famine topics discussed
and the decisions that were reached at the January UCCA Executive Board
meeting: E. Morgan Williams, www.ArtUkraine.com Information Service
The first meeting in 2003 of the Executive Board of the Ukrainian Congress
Committee of America (UCCA) was held on Saturday, January 25, 2003,
according to UCCA executive director Tamara Gallo's written report
regarding the discussion and decisions taken at the UCCA Executive Board
meeting. Michael Sawkiw is the president of UCCA.
Ms. Gallo said the main topic on the agenda was the commemoration of the
70th anniversary of the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide. In Tamara Gallo's
report she mentions six major areas that were discussed and decisions made.
(1) ANNUAL COMMEMORATION AT ST. PATRICK'S IN NY--
First Ms. Gallo said that a broad spectrum of ideas was discussed about
how to appropriately observe the upcoming anniversary including what has
become a tradition, the annual commemoration of the Famine-Genocide at
St. Patrick's Cathedral, in New York City, which will be held on Saturday,
November 15th, 2003 at 2 p.m.
Proposed keynote speakers recommended by the UCCA Executive Board
include UN Secretary General Koffi Annan, Vice President Richard Cheney,
and U.S. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. The annual event may be preceded
with a march/demonstration through Manhattan streets, as was the organized
during the 65th anniversary observance.
(2) EDUCATION OF YOUNG PEOPLE--
Secondly Ms. Gallo said in the meeting report that a critical aspect of the
Ukrainian Famine-Genocide, no matter which anniversary is observed, is
education. In a two-pronged approach to this crucial element, the UCCA
Executive Board proposed the following:
(2-A) To educate Ukrainian children at an early age by devoting one entire
history lesson on the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide within our system of
Saturday Ukrainian schools.
To supplement this lesson, a special 'competition' would be held among our
schoolchildren that would depict their views of the Famine-Genocide through
artistic sketches and paintings. The best works from every school would
then be displayed throughout the community in a traveling exhibit portraying
the Famine-Genocide through the eyes of our youth.
(2-B) Secondly, since U.S. educational issues are decided on a local level -
either by the state or city administration/school boards, the UCCA will
begin examining which high school curriculums instruct their students about
the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide. Most states require 10th grade high school
students to undergo a week of studies titled "Genocide Around the World,"
to learn the lessons of human persecutions that transpired throughout the
Previous attempts at teachers' workshops will be explored and its
collective information will be used to accentuate the need for further
education. Unfortunately, the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide of 1932-1933
is not as widely studied as other genocides/ethnocides, and thus must be
brought to the forefront for discussion within high school classrooms.
(3) INFORMATION TO THE GREATER AMERICAN PUBLIC---
A multi-faceted media approach in the United States was examined in
the context of informing the greater American public about the Ukrainian
Famine-Genocide of 1932-1933. In particular, the UCCA Executive
Board proposed that the highly acclaimed documentary film, "The Harvest
of Despair," be broadcast on American television programs such as the
Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) or similar public information channels.
Furthermore, the UCCA Executive Board proposed to approach The
Trident Group, a group of Ukrainian Americans in southern California who
work in the motion-picture industry, to develop a documentary about the
Ukrainian Famine-Genocide, complete with witness testimonies.
(4) PROGRAM TO REVOKE DURANTY'S PULITZER PRIZE---
A very chilling reminder of misinformation regarding the true facts of the
horrors bestowed upon the Ukrainian nation in 1932-1933 was the dubious
reporting of New York Times Moscow correspondent Walter Duranty,
who subsequently received a Pulitzer Prize for his articles.
The UCCA Executive Board will begin a campaign to revoke Duranty's
Pulitzer Prize for his reporting that denying the existence of a
Famine-Genocide in Ukraine. Precedents have been set by other journalists
who's Pulitzer Prizes were revoked due to falsification of facts and/or
journalistic ethics abuses.
(5) UNITED NATIONS RESOLUTION REGARDING GENOCIDE---
In cooperation with the Ukrainian diplomatic representations, the UCCA
Executive Board agreed to approach Ukraine's Permanent Mission to the
United Nations and the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) to introduce
a resolution acknowledging the famine of 1932-1933 in Ukraine as an act
of genocide at UN General Assembly.
Additionally, cooperative efforts to jointly sponsor an exhibit in the UN's
Visitor's Gallery in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Ukrainian
Famine-Genocide was discussed.
(6) BUILDING A MONUMENT IN WASHINGTON, D.C.---
Finally, the topic that generated the most discussion was the building of a
monument in Washington, D.C. to the victims of the Ukrainian
Famine-Genocide. Last year's bill (H.R. 5289), introduced by Rep. Levin,
was not voted upon by Congress since the Appropriations Committee was
overburdened by a busy congressional schedule. As early as the first week
of February 2003, Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI), co-chair of the
Congressional Ukrainian Caucus, will introduce a new bill in the U.S. House
of Representatives to put into law the erection of the famine memorial in
The UCCA Executive Board mandated that a separate Building Committee,
formed from all Ukrainian American organizations, be organized to
coordinate all aspects associated with the construction of the Famine
Additionally, it was agreed that the UCCA Presidium meet with the
Ukrainian religious hierarchy in the United States to obtain the support of
the Churches for the building of such a monument in Washington, D.C.
(There was additional information in the Tamara Gallo report about the
UCCA meeting but the information was not related to the Famine. The
entire report was published by The Ukrainian Weekly, February 9, 2003,
on page 5.)
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