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The struggle for national liberation, the freedom to develop an independent identity—these are the issues advocated with fiery eloquence in this absorbing political tract.

Written in 1919 by two Ukrainian-born Bolsheviks, On the Current Situation in the Ukraine is the first impressive statement of national communism. Vasyl' Shakhrai and Serhii Mazlakh were passionate advocates of Ukrainian independence, in particular opposition to the policies of Lenin. In their view, Lenin talked about national self-determination, but in actuality his aim was to preserve the territorial integrity of the former Russian Empire and the preeminent status of Russia.

On the Current Situation in the Ukraine brought its authors expulsion from the Party; and the book is still suppressed in the Soviet Union. It remains a remarkably relevant discussion of Soviet motives and the national aspirations of states living in the shadow of a great world power.