Why the Kremlin keeps bizarrely insisting Ukraine is run by Nazis

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Friday repeated Russian President Vladimir Putin's odd claim that Putin's "decision on the operation to demilitarize and de-Nazify Ukraine was made so that, freed from this oppression, Ukrainians could freely determine their own future." Ukraine freely elected a Jewish president, Volodymyr Zelensky, in a 2019 landslide.

Ukraine's Jewish community is not happy with the "de-Nazify" rhetoric. Kyiv Chief Rabbi Yonatan Markovitch told Haaretz he has no idea what Putin is talking about, and anti-Semitic "incidents are very rare and the government takes care of them." Putin is "totally nuts," Ilya, a Jewish businessman in Kyiv, told Haaretz. "The Jews of Ukraine are an integral part of Ukrainian society and we never faced Nazism here, or fascism, and we feel safe in Ukraine. We don't feel safe when Russia says there are Nazis here."

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