Last week, we wrote only briefly of the kinship between the Cossacks of the Ukraine and the warriors of the South. Let us look now a little more deeply at one likeness between the two: their defense of Christianity.
Matfey Sheehan says of the Cossacks:
Cossacks are basically Russian Vikings. They are a semi-democratic military people, who elect a Hetman - a warlord - to lead them, and are known for their unshakable courage in battle, and unwavering defense of the Orthodox faith. Cossacks launched many Viking-like raids and even assaulted the shores of Ottoman-ruled Constantinople, infuriating the Sultan in the 16th century.
When the Sultan, the most powerful man in the world, demanded that they stop, their response was a letter filled with profanity and mockery. "You will not make Slaves of Christian Sons!" they said to him. And indeed, when his Tatar forces laid siege to the Lavra, the Cossacks came to defend it, though it's widely believed that a miraculous and terrifying omen from the Lavra's icon saved the day.
Now, in modern divided Ukraine, the fight is again raging.
One of the places Cossacks have always protected unto death is the Pochaev Lavra, a monastery in Western Ukraine that has historically been a stronghold of Orthodoxy, its mighty walls a bulwark of the Russian Faith throughout the ages. For that, it has endured endless attacks and trials.
Between the 16th-19th centuries, the greatest threat to the Lavra was the Union of Brest. This union was a Catholic church coup encouraged by, if not outright created, by the Polish nobility to divide and conquer their Ukrainian territories.
Poland was ruled by an elected Monarch and a Senate, where every nobleman was considered equal, and even rebellion against the crown was legal. In practice, the country was often ruled by families of powerful Magnates with more influence than the crown itself.
In Ukraine, these Magnates brutally persecuted the Cossacks. They forcibly converted many churches to Vatican control; Cossacks who died for Poland in wars were put in stocks in peacetime.
Moved by the suffering of his people, Hetman Bogdan Khmelnitsky, the Greatest Cossack of all time, staged a rebellion against Poland.
In those days, the Bogdan Khmelnitsky lead his uprising against the Poles, to defend the Golden Liberties (Polish-Lithuanian system of political freedoms afforded to every noble) of the Cossacks and the Orthodox Church.
Just as Dmitri Donskoi came for the blessing of Saint Sergius of Radonezh, Bogdan Khmelnitsky came to the Lavra for the blessing of Saint Job.
After obtaining Saint Job’s blessing, and many hard battles, his uprising was finally successful. He not only defeated the Poles with the help of Czar Alexis of Russia, but he did the unthinkable: he reunited Ukraine with Russia for the first time since when the Mongols violently separated them in 1240.
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Of Dixie, Neil Kumar writes,
As aforementioned, it is of the utmost importance that this, the purest of men, was ours, the hero of our Cause; he was so confident in the divinity of our Cause that he looked forward to presenting himself before the Lord when the time came. Jackson was not a secessionist at first, and prayed to avoid war, which he knew as “the sum of all evils”, but he knew that “if the government should persist in the measures threatened, there must be a war…we shall have no other alternative; we must fight.” War was not something to be sought, but rather the last recourse in a world in which no political defenses remained. After all, Virginia’s motto was and remains sic semper tyrannis. Jackson witnessed the execution of the subsequently canonized terrorist John Brown, that emblem of the Yankee character, or as Dabney put it, “the Moloch of Federal ambition”, “fanaticism set on fire of hell.” He saw the hatred raining upon the Southern people from Northern pulpits and presses; he saw radical egalitarianism on the march, that evil which, again in Dabney’s words, “under the name of equality, would subject all the rights of individuals to the will of the many, and acknowledged no law nor ethics, save the lust of that mob which happens to be the larger.” All of this should sound familiar to those of us who keep abreast of the news in our nation each day. The Christian South, Dabney wrote, “saw the mighty beast gathering his forces for the bound upon his prey, yet they calmly stepped before his jaws”; against odds that would overwhelm anyone else, Jackson and our forefathers nonetheless fought, men against and out of time.
They gave everything for our posterity, for our birthright, because they understood the consequences, the utter devastation that would be wrought by our enemy. They understood that the state had been seized and weaponized against them, that those institutions which should have served as their guarantors had been usurped, made into their devourers. They understood that Northern capitalism stood with knives out for Southern agrarianism. They saw plainly that ruthless mercantile finance disguised as abolitionism hungrily licking its lips in rapturous anticipation of the eviscerated Southern lifeblood that would whet its appetite and slake its thirst, grist for its dark satanic mill. They understood that the Yankees threatened wholesale slaughter and pillage, “the extermination of a whole people’s national life”; they understood that their homes were threatened with annihilation, that, again in Dabney’s words, “the most powerful moral forces of the soul would be evoked to sustain the struggle.” Against the threat of the extended director’s cut of the John Brown raid, against the basest lusts and Mammon-worship, we fought for hearth and home. We fought for the Founding principles, for freedom from, not freedom to [This is an unfortunate misunderstanding by Mr Kumar. As Alexander Dugin has pointed out, it is classical liberalism’s ‘freedom from’ that we must abandon: freedom from authority, tradition, clan, etc. ‘Freedom from’ destroys the cohesiveness of society-W.G.]; Jackson himself referred to the War as “our second War of Independence”. We fought for God and the organic hierarchy that grounded our society. Jackson was sustained in the struggle through his faith, but also by his outrage at the barbarous inhumanity of the Yankee. As his men entered what was once Romney, Virginia, “scarcely anything appeared by which it could be recognized by its own children, save the everlasting hills which surround it.”
Though it is late in the history of the world, it is not too late for the South to try to strike up a friendship with the Cossacks of the Ukraine. There is more than enough common ground for the two to build a substantial bond. May God bless the effort!
Holy Ælfred the Great, King of England, South Patron, pray for us sinners at the Souð, unworthy though we are!
Anathema to the Union!