A Book Has Been Published About the Intelligence of the UPR State Center in Exile


The third volume of the scientific five-volume project “Special Services of Ukraine from Ancient Times to the Present” has just been published. It concerns the activity of the special service of the Military Ministry of the State Center of the UPR in exile from 1926 to 1936.

The thorough scientific research makes it possible to look at the time when former UPR Army warriors, scattered around the world, were trying to continue the struggle that began at the time of the liberation movement of 1917–1921. Forced to emigrate, they did not stop the struggle, did not give up on their goal – to make their Motherland free and independent. Moreover, within the Military Ministry of the State Center of the UPR in exile they created a special service which for ten years had been engaged in intelligence, counterintelligence and propaganda.

The new book continues to take off the veil of secretness from important events in our history. The stories are based on declassified documents from the archives of the Security Service of Ukraine, the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine, materials from domestic and foreign archives, and this lends credence and special importance to them. In particular, in the third volume there are more than fifty references to the state archive of the SZR of Ukraine. These are the documents that are first introduced to scientific circles. Thanks to the declassified intelligence materials, it was possible to shed light on some gaps in the biographies of prominent figures of the UPR.

The history of the creation of the UPR’s Special Service in emigration, organization of its work, main directions and tasks, forms and methods of activity are organically perceived through human lives. The images of the representatives of the military special service and those involved in this secret sphere of activity appear without an irrelevant retouch – as they were in reality: in the times of glory and victory, and in the days of defeats, retreats, wandering, staying in emigration, seeking understanding and own way to achieving the goal.

Volodymyr Salskyi, Vsevolod Zmiyenko, Ivan Lytvynenko, Vasyl Nedaykasha, Yakiv Vodyanyi, Vasyl Fylonovych, Yakiv Halchevskyi, Hnat Porokhivskyi, Petro Filonenko… Until recently, there had been no information about these extraordinary figures of the national intelligence services. The reader of this book will be able to discover many new facts from their lives and activities, to understand what induced them to certain actions and deeds, giving strength to overcome the enemies of Ukraine in an unequal confrontation, not to break, not to despair, not to give in even when the last hope was expiring.

The book has a lot of interesting and cognitive information about the following:

- Did the intelligence of the UPR have its own code and did it use concealed writing?

- What methods did intelligence officers invent to send postcards to the territory of Soviet Ukraine?

- What methodology was used to prepare couriers, intelligence agents and residents of the UPR intelligence?

- What was entered in the passport of a certain region of Ukraine for collecting intelligence?

- What questionnaire for intelligence agents was developed by the military special service of the UPR to get information about the famine in Ukraine?

- Was there an NKVD agent in the community of the former UPR soldiers in Istanbul?

- What kind of game did UPR intelligence officer Vasyl Nedaikasha play with the NKVD?

- What mysteries did the first Chief of the UPR Special Service in exile Mykola Chebotariv leave?

- What happened to Simon Petliura’s archive after his death?

The search for answers to these and other questions will allow to shed light on other episodes of the complex, intricate and dramatic activities of Ukrainian emigration figures.

The importance and applicability of this scientific work is also in the fact that both, the positive and the negative experience of the work of the military special service of the State Center of the UPR in exile may be useful even today – in the new history of our independent state. It gives impetus to understanding what is happening today around Ukraine, the nature of Russia’s aggressive policy and the activities of its special services. And this is another argument to confirm how important it is to know and understand history, to learn from past mistakes, in order not to repeat them again and again.

“Restoring the historical memory of events and facts that were silenced or falsified in the past, raising new layers of little-known or completely unknown information once again convinces us that in history one can never turn the last page”, – reads the afterword.

The third volume was worked on by Doctors of Historical Sciences Volodymyr Sidak and Tamara Vronska and researcher of the history of special services, an employee of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Oleksandr Skrypnyk.

In general, this multi-volume project is the result of the joint work of the Institute of History of Ukraine at the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, the Security Service of Ukraine, the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine, scientific, archival and museum institutions.

The previous two volumes are devoted to the activities of domestic special services on the territory of our state during the distant Princely days, the Cossack republic of the 17th century, the Ukrainian revolution of 1917–1921. The volumes that follow will be about the organization of the intelligence and counterintelligence of the UVO, OUN and UPA and the functioning of modern national intelligence services during the recent history of Ukraine.

Press Office of the SZRU