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||Chornyi Lis. Reprint of the UPA underground journal. Book one
|Editor in Chief:
|Co-editor in Chief:
|ABOUT THE JOURNAL "CHORNYI LIS"
In this and the fourth volumes of "Litopys UPA", we are reprinting the underground journal "Chornyi Lis", which was published inUkraine during the years 1947-1950. The journal was produced by the local command of the UPA's Stanyslaviv Military District (Taktychnyi Vidtynok — TV), which encompassed the western half of Stanyslaviv Oblast (now renamed Ivano-Frankivs'k) and went under the code name, "Chornyi lis" (Black forest). In general, the contributing authors were UPA soldiers, most of them officers, but there were some who were members of the armed underground.
Because of its historical value, we decided to reprint the journal inits entirety. Personal accounts and biographical sketches make up about three-quarters of the material published in the journal. A certain amount of space is given over to documents; these are, in most cases, lists of persons decorated, promoted or killed in battle. The remaining material, not more than 20-25 per cent of the total, consists of poems, short stories and articles describing celebrations of national holidays. These writings, too, are valuable, if only for the information they provide about conditions within the territory of the UPA's Stanyslaviv TV and about the history of the journal itself. It must be kept in mind that the journal was published by one of the lower commands of the UPA, using only the resources available within a single TV. This republication of the journal will make apparent both its strengths and its weaknesses. It will also show us what human resources this UPA TV had at its disposal during the period 1947-50 and give us an insight into the thoughts and views of lower-ranking UPA officers and soldiers.
Why the name "Chornyi Lis"? This is the name given to the large area of forested heights that stretches 30 km. south-west of the Stanyslaviv-Kalush railway line, along the rivers Lukva and Lukvytsia. South of it are the dense mountain forests of the Carpathian Mountains; toits north are thinner woods, which lie along the river Dnister, at a distance of several hours' march. The size and location of the Chornyi forest made it a natural centre for insurgent activity. It offered good protection and served as an ideal base for operations directed at Stanyslaviv, Kalush, Bohorodchany and neighboring districts. It was easy for personnel and provisions to come in from the lands below and it was possible to move south, into the thick Carpathian forests, in times of attack by the German units, and later, the MVD troops. As early as 1943, the first detachments of the Ukrainian People's Self-defence (Ukrains'ka Narodna Samooborona — UNS) chose the Chornyi forest as their centre of activity and the area saw many battles with Germans and with Soviet partisans. Later, it became well-known as the site of battles between theUPA and entire divisions of the MVD. Thus, when UPA military regions were divided into military districts, it was natural that "Chornyi lis" become the code name of the Stanyslaviv TV, and later the name of the local UPA journal.
The materials printed in "Chornyi Lis" do not give a systematic history of UPA activities in the Stanyslaviv TV, nor even complete histories of individual UPA battalions or smaller detachments. Rather, they tend to focus on a single operation or event, and to cover a limited period of time. Even the documents listing those promoted or fallen in battle are far from-complete. It is true that the journal includes short historical sketches of certain detachments and biographies of certain officers — for example, company commander "B. Podoliak's" brief, general history of the "Mesnyky" battalion («For the New Year, 1945»)and of the company commanded by "Hamaliya" («Hamaliya»), and his biography of Lt. Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"). Similar sketches about other detachments, officers and non-commissioned officers were written by other authors, but none of these give a clear picture of the entire situation. For this reason; we will present a brief overview of UPA activity in this territory.*)
The first detachments of the UPA in Stanyslaviv Oblast were formed during the summer of 1943 (they were then called the Ukrainian People’s Self-defence — UNS). Even while in training, they were obliged to carry on battles, not only with the Germans, but also with Gen. Kovpak's Soviet partisans, who were carrying out raids from the Brians'ki forests into the Carpathian Mountains. In January, 1944, the UNS was renamed the UPA. The greatest increase in UPA strength in Stanyslaviv province came during 1944. In the spring of that year, more UPA detachments, most often units of company size were formed. By the time the Soviet-German battle front moved to this region, they had completed basic training and acquired some battle experience. As the front shifted, in the fall of 1944, some of the companies grew into battalions. At the same time, new companies were created.
Immediately after the movement of the front, the Soviet government sent thoroughly trained, well-equipped police forces in pursuit of the UPA. At first, the Soviets met with little success, but as they built up their reconnaissance network and became more familiar with the terrain, their operations became more effective. By the late fall of 1944, the UPA was forced to wage numerous defensive battles against the MVD troops. The first significant operations against the UPA began in the winter of 1944-45. At this time, the Soviets sent entire police divisions into the Carpathian Mountains. Similar operations continued throughout1945 and resulted in some decline in the strength of the UPA, which was unable to replace those killed or wounded with new recruits. UPA detachments decreased in number, as those which had suffered heavy losses joined forces with other detachments. The most extensive operation carried out against the UPA was the so-called "great blockade" of the winter of 1945-1946. At this time, MVD armies set up garrisons in almost every village and forest region; in addition, large MVD formations combed the area in search of UPA detachments. During the winter, the UPA's Stanyslaviv TV lost many members of its command staff and a large number of soldiers. By 1946 and 1947, UPA activities in this region had declined, but the Soviets continued to send out large forces against the insurgents. Beginning with the year 1947, the UPA began to "demobilize" and its soldiers and officers entered the ranks of the armed underground. Only a limited UPA command arid a few small detachments remained, in order to carry out special assignments.
UPA forces operating in Stanyslaviv Oblast came under the authority of the Fourth Military Region (code named "Hoverlia"), which inturn, came under the UPA-West Command (UPA-Zakhid). The commanders of this military region were as follows; until the summer of1944 — Col. Ivan Butkovs'kyi ("Hutsul"); until the summer of 1945 —"Kolchak"; from the summer of 1945 — Maj. Mykola Tverdokhlib ("Hrim").In 1945, the UPA military regions were divided into military districts(TVs). Two districts were created within Stanyslaviv province: the Kolomyia TV, code named "Hutsul'shchyna" (commanders — "Stepovyi"; then, Maj. "Kozak"; finally, Maj. "Khmara"), and the Stanyslaviv TV,code named "Chornyi lis", code number 22, commanders — Col. Vasyl' Andrusiak, pseudonyms "Hrehit" and "Rizun"; after his death, Feb. 24,1946, Lt. "Dynai"). It was the command of the Stanyslaviv TV that published the journal "Chornyi Us" during the years 1947-1950. In 1945,the Stanyslaviv TV included probably six UPA battalions as well as a few independent UPA companies. The journal contains much information about the following battalions: "Pidkarpatskyi", "Dzvony", "Mesnyky", and "Smertonostsi". The information we have been able to obtain about the command staff of these battalions is presented in diagrams in the illustrated section of this book. The journal "Chornyi Lis" contains material about each of these battalions, as well as some information about UPA detachments from neighboring territories, particularly from the Kolomyia Military District. There is hardly any information on the battalions commanded by "Iskra" and "Dovbush".
A few words are needed to explain underground terminology. From the inception of the UPA, detachments were created independent of party affiliation, to serve as an all-encompassing national army, and this policy did not lead to any conflicts of a political nature. On the other hand, the underground administration was built up around the existing OUN (Orhanizatsia Ukrains'kykh Natsionalistiv — Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists) network, although some of those entering its rankswere professionals and workers who had no party affiliation, or who considered themselves members of other political parties. On this basis, entire underground administrations were established — the military administration (orh-mob.), the Ukrainian Red Cross (Ukrains'kyi Chervonyi Khrest, UChKh), the Security Service (Sluzhba Bezpeky —SB), supply, propaganda and various technical services, units for the defence of various centres and so on. Each local command of this political - administrative apparatus continued to be called the OUN leadership, regardless of the political affiliation of its members. Thus,when we are told that, for example, "Chornyi Lis" author "Ulas" worked in the OUN propaganda centre for Stanyslaviv province, this does not necessarily mean that he was a member of the OUN. Furthermore, insome cases — for example, in Volyn' — the local administrative leadership were renamed UPA support commands. Because of the diverse character of the underground membership, underground publicists consistently used such terms as "armed underground", "liberation-revolutionary underground", "OUN and the armed underground", and so on, when they were referring to the whole of the underground membership. The use of these general terms not only accurately mirrored the existing state of affairs, but also eased political relations; everyone recognized that the over-all leadership in the struggle came from the non-partisan organization, the UHVR (Ukrains'ka Holovna Vyzvol'na Rada — Supreme Ukrainian Liberation Council).
After 1947, many UPA soldiers were entering the armed underground. However, the fact that certain members of the armed under-ground held UPA military ranks does not necessarily indicate that these people were previously UPA soldiers. UPA military ranks were also bestowed upon members of various underground services, soldiers of the Samooboronni Kushchevi Viddily (Local Self-defence Units — SKV),members of defense units and others. The lists of fallen members ofthe armed underground printed in the journal illustrate this practice of giving UPA military ranks to persons outside the UPA.
Because documentation regarding re-organizations and changes of pseudonyms is not available, it is often difficult to identify detachments and officers. In texts printed in the journal, a given detachment might be identified by its code name, the name of its commander, or its code number. To the extent that this will be possible, we intend to list, identify and cross reference individuals, detachments and command staff in the index which will also list the highest ranks attained by UPA soldiers and give the functions they fulfilled.
The journal "Chornyi Lis" was established in response to a recognized need to collect material documenting the armed struggle. It was becoming apparent that in the near future the police machine ofthe USSR might well crush the Ukrainian armed struggle for freedom. It was considered essential, for historical purposes, to gather and preserve documentary records of the struggle and of the unscrupulous tactics employed by the occupying forces. Under the slogan of preserving "the truth about the liberation struggle", appeals were issued encouraging all members of the underground to gather relevant documents, material and evidences and to write memoirs. Centres were set up to collect, organize and publish material about the struggle. The journal "Chornyi Lis" was established for this purpose; its aim was to collect and publish such material within the Stanyslaviv TV. Its initiative proved successful: issues of the journal appeared. Thanks to them, we now have many detailed, factual accounts of the UPA's struggle in Stanyslaviv Oblast.
Discussion of the journal's editoral policy appears for the first time in an article by physician "Berest" (ChL, January-February, 1948),in which the author describes his visit to the editoral office of "ChornyiLis". The editor-in-chief expressed the journal's policy in this way:
The tone and content of the journal are determined by its primary aim: to present the reality of the liberating-revolutionary struggle in its true light, exactly as it is. We want to give the broad masses of the people a complete picture of our effort, our heroes, our lives; we want to illuminate, with a bright light, their way to the future.
The* editorial which appeared in the May-June, 1948, issue, onthe occasion of the journal's first anniversary, made the point more clearly:
Our task was, and continues to be, to collect the greatest possible number of accounts of the insurgent and revolutionary-liberation struggle from those who participated directly in this struggle, and to transmit these accounts, for the purposes of education and information, to the widest possible circles of the Ukrainian populace, most particularly to the Ukrainian youth.
(«From the editors»)
A little further down appears the following appeal: ... at the same time, we ask all those who have participated in the insurgent and revolutionary-liberation struggle to come to our assisstance. We ask them to send us their reminiscences, accounts of UPA battles, reports about the propaganda activities of the liberating-revolutionary underground, biographies of insurgent-revolutionaries, interesting descriptions of insurgent and revolutionary life and so on.
Thus, emphasis is placed, first, on accounts of UPA skirmishes and underground "propaganda activities", then, on biographies and "interesting" accounts of daily life.
Classification and careful analysis of the content of the journal shows it to be as follows: Approximately half the space is given over to accounts of UPA military operations and descriptions of minor encounters, which also include information about the UPA's day-to-day activities. A significant amount of space is taken up by memoirs, which tend to dwell on the authors' experience during times of particular hardship. A certain amount of space is devoted to biographical sketches of those fallen in battle. Finally, about 20-25 per cent of the material consists of articles on "topical" themes: writings about national anniversaries and outstanding persons, as well as poems and short stories.
At the outset, material published in the journal dealt only with UPA activity, and all the authors were UPA soldiers (if one excludes the writings of poet Marko Boieslav). Later, and especially in 1950, worksby authors from outside the UPA were also published. These authors wrote not only about the UPA, but also about the armed underground, placing emphasis on its military activities.
Although we know that the journal was published by the command staff of the Stanyslaviv UPA TV, we have no knowledge of the make-up of the editorial staff. The only existing piece of information with regard to this matter is the following remark in the biography of Mariya Petryshyn ("Mariyka"): "In recent times, she has been a tireless worker with the insurgent journal, «Chornyi Lis»". Caught in a hopeless situation, Mariya Petryshyn blew herself up with a grenade on July 2,1948. (ChL, July-August, 1948). Since we do not encounter her name among those of the authors published in the journal, we can assume that her duties were of a technical nature. Apart from her, no staff member of the journal is named.
A certain amount of information about the workings of the journal appears in physician "Berest's" introduction to this report, «lnto Slovakia» (ChL, January-February, 1948), in which he describes his visit to the editorial office of "Chornyi Lis". While conversing with the extremely busy editor-in-chief, "Berest" mentioned that he had participated in the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion's raid into Slovakia. The editor had been promised an article on this subject, but had not received it, so he asked "Berest" to dictate his impressions of the raid to the stenographer— as quickly as possible, since the issue was about to go to press. "Berest" also recalls that there was a great deal of activity in the editorial office, but gives no details about the journal's staff members or about their work. We can assume that the editorial staff must have included at least one person with some journalistic experience who reworked the material received by the journal. There must have been someone capable of organizing the material and making contacts with authors and a system must have been established for the production of the journal.
We know far more about the authors who contributed to the journal. Most of them clearly identify themselves; the rest can be identified from their writings. Some of the authors appear in the journal several times, and thus can be considered regular contributors. Among the most frequently published authors are the following: Marko Boieslav appeared in every issue of the journal. Company commander "B. Podoliak" and political officer "Chaika" were published in every issue except the last. Other frequent contributors were battalion commander "Pavlo", (5accounts published), company commander Mykhailo Kor-zhak ("Saper")(4), physician "Berest", 1st Lt. "Vykhor" and Warrant Officer "Ihor" (3each). Some of the above-mentioned authors were killed in battle.
A special mention must be made of poet Marko Boieslav, whose contribution to the journal was so extensive that to a large extent he set its tone. It is even possible that he was the editor of the journal. He published numerous poems, stories, articles marking national holidays, memoirs and biographical sketches. It is probable that the short stories credited to 'M. Romaniv' are also his work, for in terms of style, character motivation and plot development they closely resemble his short story, «A Voice from Kruty». We know something of Boieslav from his writings. He came from Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast. Before the war, he was active in the OUN and had been a political prisoner. From1939-1941, he was in Krakow. In 1945, he worked for the OUN provincial propaganda centre and edited the journal "Shliakh peremohy" ("The Path to Victory"). He shared the political outlook of the inter-war "Visnyk" literary magazine, and was influenced by it in his own writings. His works are often heavily laden with patriotic rhetoric, pathos, or emotional outbursts against the armies occupying Ukraine. A good example of Boieslav's literary style is his biographical sketch of Lt. Col. Mykhailo Medvid' (ChL, January-February, 1948). If Marko Boieslav was indeed the editor of "Chornyi Lis", then traces of his personal style and taste should be evident in the material written by poorer writers, for their writings were thoroughly reworked by the editorial staff.
In contrast to Boieslav's style stands that of "Ulas", author of the account, «The insurgents' daily life» (ChL, July, 1949). "Ulas" was also a member of the OUN Oblast propaganda centre in 1945. Since his languageshows no trace of the Halychyna dialect, we can guess that he came from the Dnipro region of Ukraine. He was probably a literary scholar, for his remarks about literature show a thorough knowledge of that field. Although "Ulas" describes the difficult experiences of the Stanyslaviv" propagandists", he writes with humour and a touch of irony. His account contains humourous descriptions of people and personal observations of certain details of day-to-day life that no other author has noted. "Ulas" is a totally original writer: he steers clear of cliches; his words and phrases are well-chosen.
Most of the accounts are written in a straightforward manner. Those authors who were officers were used to writing concise reports; they write their memoirs in the same style and usually desribe events in full detail. Because they were in positions of command, the officers had access to complete information about the situations they describe, whereas the non-commissioned officers and the soldiers were able to record only what they themselves saw and heard. Although the authors make an effort to inject a popular tone into their accounts, the writings of battalion commanders "Pavlo", "Chornyi", "Chornota" and "Nedo-bytyi", company commanders Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"), "Sokil", "Shablia"and others, are generally very concise in style. Company commander "B.Podoliak" and political officer "Chaika" write in a more popular vein, with more descriptive passages, dialogue, observations and personal comments. Certain authors, for example, physician "Be-rest", aim for amore creative, experimental literary style. While his report, «lnto Slovakia» is written in a journalistic manner, his "memoir (also called a "sketch"), «We are invincible» is a literary work with a fictional plot.(Many years in the future, the author tells a foreigner about Col. Vasyl' Andrusiak). Not all the authors published in the journal were equally talented. We can be certain that most of them had no journalistic experience, and that their writings had to be corrected and polished by the editorial staff.
Ten of the 11 issues of "Chornyi Lis" reprinted here are from original issues, preserved in the Archives of the ZP UHVR (Foreign Representation of the Supreme Ukrainian Liberation Council). One issue— No. 1, (10), July, 1949 — is reprinted from a copy, a reproduction of which we obtained from the Archives of the OUNr (OUN revolutionaries).We were unable to determine whether this copy was made in Ukraine or in the West.
The size of the original issues is 21 by 14 cm. The cover of each issue is the same: it has the name of the journal, "Chornyi Lis", and a drawing. Reproductions of the cover appear at the beginning and at the end of "Litopys UPA". The covers were coloured by hand, usually with water colours, but sometimes with crayons. In some issues, the cover is not coloured. A standard title page appears at the beginning of each issue, but there is some variation in the layout of lines of type. (Are production of the title page of the first issue is also included in thisbook). The deviations in layout that occur are as follows: The title page of the January-February, 1948, issue has the line, "From S. Petliura printers in Stanyslaviv", instead of the line "Drohobych-Stanyslaviv-Chernivtsi", and the 1950 issues have neither. Issue No. 2, 1949, carries the slogan, "For a united, independent Ukrainian state! Freedom to all nations! Freedom to the individual!" at the top of the page. The journal was produced on a typewriter, through a carbon onto thin paper and was typed without intervals. One issue contains pages of direct type interleaved with carbon copies, some of them barely legible. The collation of the journal was carried out with care; in the entire collection there are no repeating, mixed or missing pages. Some pages are adorned with typewritten decorations(we are including reproductions of parts of these decorations). The paper is varied and thin; in the later issues, it is a low-quality, grey, blotting-paper type of Soviet manufacture. Numerous typewritten corrections appear in the text. In some issues, there are also corrections done by hand.
Many details concerning the journal are still shrouded in mystery. For example, we do not know whether any more issues were published after May, 1950 — No. 3(16). The journal appeared regularly until August, 1948, when a double issue was produced, marked with the following numeration: "Vol. 2, No. 7-8 (10-11), July-August, 1948".The next issue did not come out until a year later — "Issue 1 (10)",July, 1949 — and there was a mistake in its numeration (we do not have a reproduction of the original version of this issue). The mistake is continued in the following issue, October, 1949, which is numbered, "Vol2, No. 2 (11)". (It should be "Vol. 3"). One can only suppose that something happened in 1948: perhaps the members of the editorial staff were killed and the production of the journal was resumed in 1949 by anew group of people. It appears that the new editors did not have all the earlier issues, and thus were unable to verify the numeration. This is quite likely, because in 1950 the 1948 numeration is restored, if one allows for the two issues published in 1949. Thus, the first issue for1950, published in March, is numbered "Vol. 4, No. 1-2 (14-15)". On the other hand, it is possible that other issues, which are not in our possession, appeared in that time.
The journals were carried across the border by armed couriers who travelled to the West on foot during the years 1947-1950. Very little of the journal's material has been reprinted in periodicals in the West.
The journals are reprinted here without any omissions. The material is presented in the same order as in the original issues. Rather than include a separate index after each issue, we will list the contents in the general index of each volume of "Litopys UPA" that contains reprints of the journal.
In the introductory article to the first issue of "Chornyi Lis", poet Marko Boieslav wrote of hearing, in the rustle of the trees of the Chornyi forest, legends of the heroic deeds of the UPA. He foretold the coming of a poet-genius, who would understand the language of the forest and reproduce it in his works. The first collection of these "legends" was the journal "Chornyi Lis". We offer it to our readers.
All issues of the journal, except for No. 1 (10), July, 1949, were obtained from the ZP UHVR Archives. The July, 1949, issue was taken from the OUNr Archives. The photographs reproduced in this volume come from the ZP UHVR Archives. AH photographs from 1944 were made personally by Mr. Mykola Lebid.
The editors wish to express their thanks to all the institutions and Individuals who assisted in the production of this volume of "Litopys UPA".in particular, we would Iike to thank Mr. Mykola Lebid, for his work with materials in the ZP UHVR Archives; Mr. Volodymyr Ma-kar,for searching through the OUNr Archives; Mr. Antin Iwachniuk, for correcting texts; Ms. Zonia Keywan, for doing the translations; Miss Nadia Shtendera for preparing the map and diagrams; and Mr. Jurij Majiwskyjand Ms. Anna Malyk for re-typing often-illegible texts.
Compilers of this volume of the "Litopys UPA"
*) For more information about UPA activities in this area see Lew Shankowsky, "Trynadtsiat' lit...", Almanakh stanyslavivs'koyi zemli, 1975, pp. 163-193.
Page 64. "Chornyi Lis", No. 1, June 1947
This issue of the journal includes an introductory article, six accounts of UPA military encounters, four biographical sketches, two documents and two poems. Marko Boieslav is the author of the introductory article, the poems and one of the biographical sketches. The accounts of skirmishes and other biographies were written by UPA officers. The first document, "Decorations", lists 13 decorated UPA officers; the second, "Fallen on the field of glory", names 35 fallen UPA soldiers - 29 officers and six non-commissioned officers. All the persons named in the documents were active in the UPA's Stanyslaviv Military District(TV), which went under the code name, "Choryi lis"; (code number 22).
The journal begins with Marko Boieslav's poem, "Their order", and his patriotic article, "The legend of Chornyi forest".
Company commander "B.Podoliak" describes the battle that took place on April 29, 1944, in the village of Hrabivka, Perehins'kyi Raion, between the UPA company commanded by Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun") and a detachment of Col. Kulagin's Soviet partisans ("encounter with Soviet partisans in the village of Hrabivka"). On the day before the skirmish, 28 Soviet cavalrymen had descended on the village to requisition food supplies. A platoon of UPA soldiers caught them in a surprise attack: they drove away the enemy soldiers and captured their horses. On the morning, Kulagin's forces advanced on the platoon and the Soviet captured part of the village. V. Andrusiak brought the rest of his company to assist the platoon. The fight raged from sunrise until three o'clock in the afternoon. The Soviet finally retreated in panic but not before they had murdered 16 civilians, including the priests Mylytiuk and Skruten'. Soviet losses numbered between ten and twenty; four insurgents were killed including platoon leader "Moroz" and his assistant, "Lisovyi".
Capt. "Chornota", commander of the battalion "Dzvony", gives an account of his battalion's night attack, on December 21, 1945, on and MVD special force of over 300 men, in the Perhins'kyi Raion. ("Battalion "Dzvony's" attack on the Soviet in the Chornyi forest, near the village of Zaviy, Perehins'kyi Raion".) We are given a detailed description of enemy positions and of the plan of attack, then a brief account of the operation, which was carried out by the battalion's 1st and 2nd companies, under the command of Lt. "Yavir" and Lt. Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"). The insurgents attached one MVD unit in the forest; another, while it was on the march; and a third, in the village of Zaviy. In each case, the attack was successful: heavy losses were inflicted on the enemy and supplies of arms and equipment were captured. The remaining members of the battalion, who maintained outposts on the access road, destroyed two vehicles carrying MVD soldiers. The battalion suffered on losses.
Sgt. Maj. (Starshyi Bulavnyi) "Henyk" tells of the origins of Vasyl' Andresial's company, in July-September, 1943> ("From the memoirs of Sgt. Maj. "Henyk", as written down by political officer "Chaika"). At its inception in the Kolomyia and Sniatyn regions in July, 1943, the detachment consisted of eight persons. As the group made its way towards the Chornyi forest, it was joined by more volunteers. In order to obtain arms and military equipment, the insurgents launched attacks on German posts. The author provides a details account of all new volunteers, noting their pseudonyms and their places and dates of entry into the company. He also describes the company's encounters with Germans: attacks in the "Schutz" police in Horodenka Povit, on the town of Tys'menytsia and on the "Liegenschaft" in Markivtsi. He gives a brief description of the company's skirmish with Kovpak's partisans, of the entry into the UPA of the Soviet Major "Yurko", and of meetings with the UPA battalion "Chorni Chorty", which was under the command of "Hutsul" (Ivan Butkov'skyi).
Lt. "Pavlo", commander of "Zavediyi" company of the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion commanded by "Prut", describes an ambush on the Soviet army carried out in March 11, 1945, between the villages of Didushytsi Mali and Diduchytse Velyki. ("A memoir of "Skazheni" battalion's raid into the Stryi region"). An MVD motor convoy drove into the ambush. Firing at close range, the company destroyed the convoy but it did not score a complete victory, because the survivors of the ambush were quickly joined by reinforcements. The author give a full description of the operation. Approximately 220 Soviet soldiers were killed; of the insurgents, one was killed and three wounded.
Lt. Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"), provides an account of the "Dzvony" battalion's battle in the Chornyi forest, between the villages of Krasne and Khmelivka, on January 23, 1946. ("Battle in the forest clearing "). The battle occurred during the MVD's great blockade of the UPA's zone of operations. MVD garrisons had been established in villages and in wooded areas. The insurgents were malnourished and exhausted by skirmishes and marches. While the battalion (consisting of companies commanded by M. Korzhak, "Yavir" and "Vovk" )was marching through an open section of the forest, MVD forces attacked, both from the ground and from the air. The fight lasted almost all day. When the situation became critical - the insurgents had almost exhausted their supply of ammunition and were totally surrounded by enemy forces - M. Korzhak, who was commanding the battalion in place of battalion commander "Chornota", gave each company a separate order to charge through. The battalion broke through the encirclement, but 15 insurgents were killed, among them platoon leader "Shuhai". Several of the seriously wounded insurgents who could not be evacuated shot themselves. 50 Soviet soldiers were killed.
Platoon leader "Chernyk" tells of the skirmish waged in the spring of 1945 by two platoons of the "Mesnyky" battalion (commanded by "Blahyi") against a Soviet force near the village of Khmelivka, Bohorodchany Raion. ("Encounter near Khmelivka", written down by political officer "Chaika"). Two platoons, under the command of the author and "Moroz", took part in the battle. The platoons were guarding the battalion's quarters in the village of Hrabivka. They allowed the advancing enemy force to come within close range, then struck with all their strength, inflicting heavy losses in their opponents. About 50 Soviet soldiers were killed.
Two biographical sketches appear in honor of Col. Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun"), who was killed on February 24, 1946. Andrusiak is generally considered to be the most renowned officer of the Stanyslaviv TV. In the sketch, "Rizun-Hrehit - A heroic figure", Warrant Officer (Bunchuzhnyi) "Bohdan" speaks of Andrusiak's qualities as an insurgent officer. M.Boieslav describes his personal qualities. In "My first meeting with Rizun-Hrehit", Boieslav recounts the conversations he held with Andrusiak during a visit to the insurgents' camp. Both authors give a very favorable picture of the fallen commander.
Political officer "Chaika" writes a biographical sketch of UPA platoon leader "Gonta", a member of the "Mesnyky" battalion commanded by "Blahyi". ("Platoon leader Gonta, D.M."). Of "Gonta's" real name, only the initials, D.M., are known. His place of origin is also unknown. His father was an electrician. During the time of the German occupation, "Gonta" was studying the same trade in a technical school. He was arrested by the Gestapo for his activity in the OUN, but was released because of a lack of evidence. IN November, 1943, he joined V. Andrusiak's UPA detachments, and acquired a reputation as a good machine-gunner. He served as courier with the detachment's command staff and was a squad leader. He was wounded' after his recovery, he became platoon leader in the "Mesnyly" battalion. During the winter of 1946-47, the battalion was divided and stayed in underground bunkers. On January 7, 1947, an MVD unit discovered then, when the situation became hopeless, they took their own lives.
Staff Sgt. "Kyr" writes a biographical sketch of another UPA platoon leader, Mykhailo Zavhordyi ("Ihor"). "Ihor" was born in the village of Perevozy, Zhovtvevui Raion. During the summer of 1943, he joined the E, Konovalets' battalion (code names "Chorni Chorty"), which was under the command of 1st Lt. "Lypei". "Ihor" completed his training as a non-commissioned officer and participated in various battles with the Germans. During the winter of 1943-44, he fell ill and returned home for treatment. after the arrival of the Soviets, he organized an UPA platoon, which became known for the numerous surprise attacks it carries out against the enemy in the Zhovtevyi and Halyts'kyi raions. The sketch gives descriptions of some of the exploits of the platoon, which was a special, independent unit allied with the battalion "Dzconyz". "Ihor's" death was tragic. In the evening of April 13, 1947, he began a single-handed battle with a unit of the MVD. He was seriously wounded, captured and died under torture during interrogation.
Page 108. "Chornyi Lis", No. 2, August 1947
This issue contains ten personal accounts by UPA officers, an introductory article and two poems by Marko Boileslav, two documents and two humorous sketches. Most of the personal accounts are descriptions of skirmishes, only three give details of day-to-day activities. The introductory article honors those who fell in battle. One of the documents give a list of 37 dead; the other names 28 UPA soldiers singled out for decoration.
"B.Podoliak", later company commander, gives a details account of a defensive battle against the Germans on Lopata Mountain, in the Skole district of L'viv province. ("Skirmish on Lopata Mt."). On July 7, 1944, about 11 o'clock in the morning, the Germans attacked two UPA companies while they were on the march. The UPA company commanders were "Blahyi" and Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun");Andrusiak commanded the skirmish. "Blahyi's" company took up a defensive position, covering Andrusiak's company as it pulled on to the ridge of Lopata Mt. Then Andrusiak's company covered "Blahyi's" company as it pulled back. The German police troops, together with Hungarian units, continued until nightfall to attack the mountain from all sides, but were repelled. In his description of the encounter, the author notes the roles of individual detachments, describes their armaments and gives other details.
Physician "Berest" writes an account of the incursion carried out by the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion from the Stanyslaviv region, commanded by Lt. "Prut", into the Lemko , in July-December, 1945. ("Impressions of the Lemko region"). The account includes descriptions of the battalion's day-to-day life, as well as the author's impression of the state of affairs in the Lemko region. A fierce struggle was raging at the time between the UPA and the Polish communist army, which was trying to drive the Lemkos from their lands into the USSR.
Political officer "Yaryi" describes in detail a defensive engagement waged by the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion on August 16, 1945m near the villages of Prybyshiv in the Lemko region. ("One of the UPA's engagements in the Zakerzon region"). During the night, one platoon of the batalion destroyed the Soviet garrison at the Komancha station on the Czechoslovakian border. The following day, an MVD unit and Polish army (WP) force of about 300 attacked the battalion's outpost near the village of Prybyshiv. The battalion took up its defense in hills near the village, repelled the enemy's attacks and forced him to retreat. One Polish unit, which had broken into the village, was surrounded and destroyed as it made its retreat. Battalion commander Lt. "Prut" commanded the fight.
Lt. "Sokil", commander of the 1s company of the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion, briefly describes the battalion's night attack, on October 18, 1945, against a Polish garrison in the town of Bircha. ("Attack of the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion on the town of Bircha, Povit of Peremushl'"). The operation was directed by Lt. "Prut". "Sokil's" company was the smash the Polish army (WP) barracks and the prison; " Karmeliuk's", the police garrisons and other establishments. The task of "Pyrih's" company was to safeguard the attack and to prevent the enemy from obtaining assistance. Sustaining almost no losses, "Sokil's" company scattered the Polish battalion, burned the barracks and smashed the prison, freeing about two hundred Ukrainian prisoners. "Karmeliuk's" company was equally successful. In the morning the insurgents retreated into the forest.
Political officer "Chaika" describes how the company commanded by "Vovk" celebrated Easter in the Chornyi forest in 1946. The memoir is full of interesting details. Although the celebration came in the wake of the great blockade of the UPA's area of operation by the MVD forces, the tables were laden with eggs, cheese, butter, sausage, ham and other Easter food supplied by neighboring villages. The author recalls that the soldiers were thin and weakened after the difficult winter and that the outposts and sentries carefully guarded the camp. There were no priests or other civilians at the celebrations; only battalion commander "Chornota" and members of the underground - about 80 persons in all. The author summarizes the speeches given at the celebration and describes the morale of the troops.
Lt. Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"), then the assistant platoon leader of the 1st company of the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion commanded by Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun"), describes an ambush on a retreating German transport, carried out under his command by a platoon of about 50 men on August 3, 1944. ("Ambush near Yasinka Masiova"). The platoon overpowered the German guard of about 150 men, took 107 prisoners and captured 60 carloads of military equipment.
The author gives a detailed account of the operation, in which he was seriously wounded.
1st Lt. "Vykhor" briefly describes a defensive engagement waged on September 20, 1944, by three UPA training companies (commanded by "Dovbush", "Iskra" and "Kryveiko") against the MVD units on Malynovyshche Mountain. ("Engagement on Maynovyshche Mt."). The Non-commissioned Officers School, under the command of 1st Lt. Chmelyk, also took part. The combat was directed by Maj. Mykola Tverdokhlib ("Hrim"), UPA commander for 300 men; the Soviets, 800, with reinforcements on the way. At first, the UPA units defended their camps from previously-dug trenches; later, they were forced into a mobile defense. They repelled the enemy's advance from 13:00 hours until nighttime, then broke through the encirclement. The UPA lost ten men; their opponents, 50.
Lt. "Pavlo", commander of the 2nd company of Lt. "Prut's" "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion (referred to here by its code name, "Skazheni"), describes the battalion's attack, on April 7, 1945, on a 170-man strong MVD garrison in the village of Posich (Chornyi forest). ("Attack in the village of Posich").The 1st company, "Zmiyi", commanded by "Sokil", and the 2nd, "Zavediyi", commanded by "Pavlo", struck at night, destroying the garrison stationed in the village school and three neighboring houses. The 3rd company, "Chorni Chorty", maintained positions around the village to prevent the enemy from obtaining assistance of an arm.
1stLt. "Dons'kyi" describes in detail an evening ambush carried out by an UPA company commanded by "Shum", on September 25, 1944, near the village of Sokil, Halych District. The aim of the ambush was to destroy the outpost of an 80-man MVD special force unit from the village of Medyn', but a much larger MVD unit fell into the trap. The company shattered the enemy forces and seized a good deal of military equipment. 173 enemy soldiers were killed.
Poet Marko Boieslav depicts the camp lifestyle of the UPA company commanded by "Shum" in and account entitled "In Shym's camp".
(September, 1944). He describes the mood in the camp. recounts the activities of the soldiers and gives portraits of several officers, including company commander "Shum".
Page 141. "Chornyi Lis", No. 3, October 1947
This issue of the journal is dedicated to the feast-day of the UPA, October 14, the same day as the religious feast of St.Mary the Protectress. In 1947, on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of UPA activity, the UHVR declared in a resolution that this traditional Ukrainian military feast, dating back to the Cossack period, should by revived. "Dunai", commander of the Stanyslaviv Military District (TV), issued an order to his troops that they celebrate this feast-day. The order explains the significance of the holiday and suggests how it should by celebrated On this occasion the editors of the journal and the "Chornolis'ki povstantsi" (Chornyi forest insurgents) printed a telegram greeting members of the UPA's high command - Maj. Mykola Tverdokhlib ("Hrim"), Col. Vasyl' Sydor ("Shelest", "Vyshytyi") and Gen. Roman Shukhevych (Taras Chuprynka") and wishing them success in the struggle for freedom. The journal also includes an anniversary poem by Marko Boieslav, "14.10.1942", and an article, "On the fifth anniversary of the UPA's struggle" (unsigned), which gives a historical overview of the UPA's struggle, notes its successes and discusses the current problem of defense against superior Soviet forces.
Memoirs make up the rest of this issue.
In an article entitled "For the New Year, 1945", company commander "B.Podoliak" gives the story, past and present, of the UPA battalion commanded by "Blahyi". The author describes the battalion's quarters in the snow, its camp fires burning among the enormous fir trees of the Chornyi forest. He gives sketches of the officers, battalion commander "Blahyi" and company commanders "Oleh" and "Shum". He presents the battalion's history as though narrated by "Blahyi". At first, we are told, it was a company. On November 26, it had its first successful fight with the German forces. Throughout the winter and spring of 1944 the company carried out numerous attacks against the Germans. After Easter it fought with Soviet partisans who were making incursions into the Chornyi forest. In June, 1944, the company carried out raids in the district of Bolekhiv, Stryi, Drohobych, Sambir and Peremushl', where it fought successfully against the Germans on Lopata Mt., in Bystrystsia, Svydnyk, Zubrytsia and Yasinka. By the time of the Soviet return, in the fall of 1944, the company had grown into a battalion. It carried out a string of skirmishes with the MVD troops. The account ends with a New Year's message delivered by "Blahyi" to his battalion.
A second account by "B. Podoliak", "Easter in the Chornyi forest, 1944", describes the Easter celebrations of the company commanded by Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun" ). A priest and various guests came to the forest and wagons loaded with holiday food arrived from nearby villages. The account is valuable as a record of the insurgents' lifestyle.
"Marko Boieslav" provides a sketch of Yaroslav Mel'nyk ("Robert"), who fell on October 31, 1946 ("In place of a word at a graveside of Yaroslav Mel'nyk - "Robert" ". Y. Mel'nyk was an outstanding OUN activist in the Carpathian Mountains. He began as an OUN leader of the Kalush Povit; then, of the Kolomiya Okruh, later of Stanyslaviv Oblast and finally, of the Carpathian Krai. Caught in an MVD ambush, Y. Mel'nyk ended his life with a shot from his own pistol.
Political officer "Chaika" describes the UPA ambush which took the life of MVD Colonel Gen. Moskalenko. ("For the blood of my comrades"). The general's death was accidental. On May 3, 1946, Lt. "Pavlo", commander of the UPA battalion "Mesnyky", sent ten soldiers to set up an ambush on the Stryi-Stanyslaviv road, near the Tiaziv railroad station. The group was led by platoon leader "Gonta"; the account also mentions platoon leader "Richka", squadron leader "Solovey" and rifleman "Romko". Colonel Gen. Moskalenko's limousine drove into the ambush. Everyone was killed The following day a whole Soviet division went in pursuit of the insurgents.
Warrant Officer (Bunchuzhnyi) "Ihor" describes the attack, on January 18, 1945, by a large MVD force on the UPA battalion "Smertonostsi" in the forest near the village of Boknariveka forest" ). The battalion was commanded by Capt. "Chornyi". Companies commanded by "Vykhor" and "Hroza" were quartered separately, at a distance of 500m. from each other. Although they provided mutual aid, each company carried on its defense independently. They repelled the enemy's attack for one-and -a-half hours, then broke through the encirclement bringing their wounded with them for treatment in neighboring villages. In the evening, one company had another encounter with the MVD forces, from which it emerged successful. The author does not provide a detailed description of the whole operation, but gives a picture of certain individual encounters and of the general lifestyle of the soldiers. These events occurred during the great winter blockade by the MVD units of the UPA's area of operations.
The UPA's physician "Berest" writes a personal reminiscence about Col. Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Hrehit", "Rizun"), which he entitles "We are invincible". The account is written as a conversation with a "foreigner", held many years in the future, in which the author speaks of the legendary UPA commander V. Andrusiak. "Berest" describes Andrusiak's appearance and his qualities both as a person and as an army commander, provides an outline of Andrusiak's activities and recounts his own meetings with him. The author makes no attempt to conceal the fact the he was greatly impressed with Andrusiak's personal qualities and military talents. The sketch is useful not only for biographical purposes, but also as an account of the soldierly virtues considered necessary in the face of the struggle the UPA was waging. Col. V. Andrusiak was killed on February 24, 1946.
This issue of the journal also contains posthumous notices about Col. Dmytro Kliachkivs'kyi, 1st Supreme Commander of the UPA in Volyn'; Gen. Dmytro Hrystai, Chief of the UPA Supreme General Staff; and Dmytro Mayivskyi, member of the OUN leadership. The mentions were reprinted from "Ideia i chyn", no. 10.
Page 203. "Chornyi Lis", Vol. 2, No. 1-2 (4-5), January-February 1948
This issue marks the religious and national holidays with poems by Marko Boieslav. There are two Christmas poems - "Hey, in Ukraine" (insurgent carol) and "Christmas Eve in the Resistant", and a poem honoring the annoversary of Ukraine's sovereignty: "21.1.1918-1919". Bioeslav also marks the battle at Kruty with a patriotic allegory, "A Voice from Kruty". It tells of a disillusioned youth wandering through fields near the site of a battle in search of the meaning of apparition - the Spirit of the Heroes - who points out to him the purpose of his life - to serve his motherland. The youth vows to devote his life to the struggle for freedom.
In addition to this topical material, the journal contains eight personal accounts and three documents. Two of the documents are UHVR resolutions concerning military decorations for UPA soldiers and civilians, and promotion of soldiers. The documents list 19 decorated (15 UPA soldiers and four civilians ) and 12 promoted. The third document names 14 soldiers fallen in the Stanyslaviv Military District (TV). The list gives each soldier's rank, pseudonym, function (position in the UPA), date of death and the code number of his UPA unit. Of the personal accounts, one is biographical sketch.
Physician "Berest" writes an informative account of the incursion by the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion, commanded by Lt. "Prut", into Slovakia, August 23 - September 10, 1945. ("Into Slovakia"). Based on the author's journal, the account provides detailed information with regard to names, places and contents of conversation as well as descriptions of the people living in the region - Ukrainian and Slovak, their attitudes towards the UPA and the communist regime, information about UPA activities, communist propaganda and other relevant material. Five UPA companies took part in this propaganda raid. The author was attached to the battalion's headquarters, together with political officer "Kruk", of the Drohobych UPA Military District code name "Magura". The account also includes a copy of a letter from "Zorych" to Lt. "Prut", ordering him to set out on the raid, and a description of the editorial offices of "Chornyi Lis".
Physician "Foka" recounts the tragic defensive combat waged in the Chornyi forest on March 22, 1945, by part of "Mesnyky" battalion ("Shum's" company and part of "Vershmy's " company), led by battalion commander "Blahyi". ("they will not crush us..."). MVD forces of superior strength advances from two sides, from the villages of Lesivka and Sadzhava. The insurgents took up a circular defense. At first they succeeded in repelling the enemy attacks; them , their defense began to breakdown. The enemy attacks; then their defense began to breakdown. The enemy destroyed the novice platoon commanded by "Tuhar" and drove some of the units out of their positions.
The battle raged for three hours and ammunition began to run out. Battalion commander "Blahyi" gave a separate order to each unit to charge through. 75 insurgents were killed, among them company commander "Shum" and battalion commander "Blahyi". Some parts of the battle are described in derail; others, in a fragmentary manner. 180 enemy soldiers were killed. Soviet aircraft also took part in the combat. Because of a misunderstanding, fore was exchanged between units of the MVD.
Political officer "Chaika" describes a night attack carried out in the fall of 1944 in the main Raion town of Tys'menyteia by "Shum's" company. ("On Tys'menytsia"). The account begins with a description of the company's quarters in the village of Bilshanytsia, and of the meeting held by the officers to discuss the plan of attack. The aim of the operation was to destroy the MVS garrison, the prison, the military office and other Raion establishments. The author describes his own assignment - maintaining a security outpost, with two squads, on the road from Tys'menytsia to Stanyslaviv - as well as his observation of the battle that took place in the town. It lasted for approximately two hours. We are told that there were explosions and fires, but are not given the outcome of the battle.
Lt. "Pavlo", who later became a battalion commander, recalls how he came to join the UPA company under the command of Vasyl' Andrusiak ("Herhit","Rizun"). ("In resistance"). In the spring of 1944 a group of 35 volunteers from the Stanyslaviv Povit gathered in the village of Rybne. Since there were German troops in the area, the meeting was held in secret and all traveling was done by night. The men made their way to the Chornyi forest. They met Andrusiak's company in the village of Zaviy. Of the volunteers, Andrusiak accepted only the young; the older men were sent home. The account contains interesting descriptions of the general conditions in the area and of the state of mind of the population, the volunteers and the insurgents, as well as character sketches of members of the underground and UPA officers V. Andrusiak, "Khmara" and "Yastrub".
"Hrushko" describes the quarters in the Chornyi forest of UPA battalion "Dzvony", then gives an account of that battalion's night attack, at the end of August, 1945, on a 150-man-strong MVD garrison in the village of Yavorivka. ("Attack on the Village on Yavorivka").The author begins with scenes from the day-to-day life of the insurgents and character sketched of several soldiers and officers, then presents the plan of attack. "Vovk's" company caught the MVD force in assembly and struck with all its strength. Panic ensued: the MVD soldiers scattered, leaving behind wounded, 30 dead and a good supply of weapons. Prisoners held by the MVD were released. "Yavir's" company also participated in the skirmish. V. Andrusiak, commander of the UPA's Stanyslaviv Military District (TV), was with the battalion at the time. One UPA soldier was wounded.
Capt. "Chornyi", commander of the battalion "Smertonostrsi", describes the defensive combat waged by two of his companies ("Zalilzni", commanded by "Bohun", and "Zviri", commanded by "Hroza") and "Siri" (a company from the battalion "Dzvony"), commanded by Mykhailo Korzhak ("Saper"), on August 28, 1945, in the Kinchats'kyi forest, Koropets'kyi Raion, Ternopil Oblast. ("Skirmish in the Kinchats;kyi forest, 27.8.1945"). In addition of the arrival of about 600 MVD soldiers from Ternopil', the insurgents took up a wide circular defensive position. The battle began at 15:00 hours on "Siri" company's part of the front. The MVD forces succeeded in cutting off part of "Siri" company from the rest of the battalion and forcing it to pull back.
The strongest attack was directed against "Zalizni" company which repelled ten enemy attacks in a period of two hours. When the defensive circle shrunk, bringing the two sides in face to face combat, battalion commander "Chornyi" ordered his men of charge through the encirclement. The charge was successful. 80 Soviet soldiers were killed; the insurgents had no losses.
In a biographical sketch that serves as a prime example of a patriotic rhetoric, Marko Boieslav writes about Lt. Col. Mykhailo Medvid' ("Kremianets'kyi", "Karpovych"),a member of the UPA Supreme Military Staff (HVSh), who was killed on June8, 1945. ("Lt. Col. Mukhailo Medvid' - Kremianets'kyi-Karpovych"). M. Medvid' came from the town of Tys'menytsia and studied in the business school in Stanyslaviv. From 1933 he was a member of the OUN, for which he twice served sentences in Polish jails. During the first Soviet occupation he was out of the country. From the time of the founding of the UPA in Volyn', he served as director of the Central Technical Liaison in the UPA Supreme Command (HK) in Volyn'; then, from 1944, he was a member of the UPA Supreme Command and co-editor of the journal "Povstanets".
Page 248. "Chornyi Lis", Vol. 2, No. 3-4 (6-7), March-April 1948
This issue marked the anniversary of the poet T.Shevchenko (Poem by Marko Boieslav, "To the Great Kobzar") and the 30th anniversary of the raiding of Ukrainian flags on ships of the Black sea fleet in 1918 (introductory article by Marko Boieslav, "28.IV.1918-28.IV.1948").Most of the issue is taken up with seven personal accounts by UPA soldiers. In addition, there are two biographies, another poem by Marko Boileslav ("Song about Prut's battalion raid across the border") and a document that lists fallen members of the underground from the Stanyslaviv Okruh. 30 persons are named and we are given their pseudonyms, positions in the underground and places and dates of death.
Company commander "B. Podoliak" describes an oath-taking ceremony conducted by UPA units at the end of July, 1944, in the forest near the village of Svydnyk, Drohobych Oblast. The ceremony was attended by "Dzvinchuk", commander of the Drohobych military Region (Viiskova Pkruha - VO), Gen. D.Hrytsai ("Perebynis"), Chief of the UPA Supreme Military Staff (HVSh)' members of the UHVR, priests and "other representatives". The oath-taking was administered by Gen. Hrytsai.
In an account entitled "Feast of the Heroes in the Chornyi forest", "Baidenko", director of the underground administration for Stanyslaviv Raion, writes about his work and describes a visit he made in the spring of 1946 to "Slavobor" (Probably Marko Bioeslav) and the UPA camp in the Chornyi forest. The camp housed about 70 soldiers and officers (probably the battalion "Dzvony"), among them Capt. "Chornota", Lts. M, Korzhak ("Saper"), "Pavlo" and "Yavir" and Warrant Officer 'Bohdan'. The account includes interesting remarks about conditions in the forest after the MVD forces' winter blockade of the UPA's area of operations , and gives character sketches. It ends with a description of the celebration of the Feast of the Heroes, on May 23, 1946.
"Three portraits", by "A.Shved" (probably another pseudonym of physician "Berest"), is a short story that combines realistic descriptions with hallucinatory visions experienced by the author while being sick and in a state of delirium. The story is written "in memory of February 24,1946", the date of death of Col. Vasyl' Andrusial, commander of the Stanyslaviv Military District (TV) and "Boian", political officer for the same TV, and is dedicated to these two officers and to battalion commander "Prut". We are shown the sufferings endured by UPA soldiers during the winter blockade of 1946; the men are debilitated by ceaseless battles and marches, cold and malnourishment. Emphasis is placed on the roles played in these circumstances by three officers to whom the story is dedicated.
Lt."Pavlo" of the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion describes his battalion's winter operations of March 1945. At this time the MVD gathered a large force in an attempt to destroy the UPA battalion. (From the battles of Prut's battalion"). To avoid leaving clear tracks in the snow the battalion was forces to zig-zag between the different enemy units and often had to fight off attacks. The soldiers usually slept right on the snow, without fires, and were weak, ragged and hungry. The author describes the battalion's manoures in its journey from the village of Didushchytsi, its defensive skirmishes near the villages of Trostianets' (Stryi Raion ) and Maidan-Fabrika, and two combats on March 25, one in the morning, the other in the evening, near the village of Pryslip. During the fight, near Pryslip, 160 enemy soldiers were killed, while the insurgents lost three.
Sgt. Maj. "Shablia", commander of the 2nd company of the battalion commanded by "Dovbush", describes the battalion's attack, in the night of November 30, 1945, on the town of Deliatyn, and its defensive fight, on the following day, on Syniak Mt. ("Battle in the town of Deliatyn and at Syniak Mt."). We are first given a description of the battalion's quarters, then a detailed account of the attack on Deliatyn, the retreat, and the combat that took place on the following day. Without sustaining and losses, the insurgents smashed the MVD garrison in Deliatyn, killing 30 persons, and burned down the saw mill. As they retreated, snow began to fall, making their tracks visible to the enemy. When they passed the village of Luh, MVD troops who were quartered there attacked them. The battalion retreated onto Syniak Mt. and took up a defensive position from which it repelled the attack. The insurgents lost seven men; the enemy many mare (number not given).
Sgt. Maj. "Kyr", then commander of the 2nd platoon of the company commanded by "Chornota", writes about the raids and battles that were carried on in the Carpathian Mountains during December, 1944, by the battalion commanded by Vasyl' Andrusiak. Because MVD troops were Making incursions into the Chornyi forest, the battalion moved its operations further east, into the Raions of Bohorodchany, Otynia and Lanivtsi. The battalion was made up of companies commanded by "Khmara", "Prut" and "Chornota". The insurgents engaged in combat operations - ambushes and an attack, by "Prut's" company, on the station in the village of Vorona. The author gives a detailed account of the ambush set up by "Chornota's" company on the road to Havrylivka, neat the village of Velesnytsia., The company was armed with a grenade launcher, 20 machine guns and light infantry weapons. An MVD force of about 200 fell into the trap and the company struck with all its might. The ambushed Soviets returned fire and called for help. When planes and additional MVD units arrives, the company retreated. During the retreat, two insurgents were killed and three were wounded. Soviet losses were about 50.
"Enei", a member of the underground, writes about his visit, in October, 1944, to the camp of "Mesnyky" battalion, which was under the command of "Blahyi". ("In the camp of Blahyi's battalion"). The author was visiting his friend, "Buitur", platoon leader in the 1st company, which was commanded by "Vershnyk". "Enei" describes the soldiers' lifestyle and activities and provides character sketches. He gives details of a raid on the Lemko region from which the battalion had just returned. Later, "Buitur's" platoon carried out two successful ambushes on Soviet forces in the Bohorodchany Raion. On November 1, the Soviets began their raids on Chornyi forest. A neighboring company battles with them and its commander, "Gamaliya", was killed. The battalion set out on raids into other woods. The account ends as the author parts with "Buitur", who is about to move east with Col. "Shpak's" unit, composed of men from the Dnipro region.
A biographical sketch by political officer "Chaika" honors Augustine Donnini ("Mykhas"), and Italian serving with the UPA. The son of a postman who became and invalid after the First World War, Donnini was born in Rome. He studied medicine and was sent to work as a medical orderly in Ukraine, where he joined the UPA. At first he was with the "Pidkarpatskyi" battalion, under the command of "Prut", them, in 1945, with "Mesnyky" company, commanded by "Pavlo". The author speaks highly of Donnini, presenting him as an intelligent, amicable person, a good soldier and a dedicated medical orderly.
"A.Shved" writes a biographical mote about Mykhailo Khmel' ("Vsevolid"), OUN leader of the Stanyslaviv Okruh, who was killed on June 7, 1947. ("A word at the graveside of Mykhailo Khmel'-Vsevolod"). M.Khmel' came from the village of Kukul'nyky in Podillia and attended high school in Stanyslaviv, at the time of the German occupation he was the OUN youth leader for Stanyslaviv Oblast.
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