Commemorating WWI Canadian Internment

On August 22 Ukrainian-Canadians commemorated, coast-to-coast, the 100th anniversary of the internment at the start of WWI. While the “enemy aliens” sent by the Canadian government to distant camps originated in various countries, including the Ottoman Empire, the majority of the innocent victims were Ukrainian.

As in 99 locations across Canada, Ukrainian-Canadians of Brantford, Ontario also remembered the centennial of the internment on August 22. The “keynote speaker” at the St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church hall commemorations was award-winning writer Marsha Skrypuch who delivered a short but powerful speech about the injustices done to the Ukrainians and to the Armenians.

On August 22 Ukrainian-Canadians commemorated, coast-to-coast, the 100th anniversary of the internment at the start of WWI. While the “enemy aliens” sent by the Canadian government to distant camps originated in various countries, including the Ottoman Empire, the majority of the innocent victims were Ukrainian.

As in 99 locations across Canada, Ukrainian-Canadians of Brantford, Ontario also remembered the centennial of the internment on August 22. The “keynote speaker” at the St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church hall commemorations was award-winning writer Marsha Skrypuch who delivered a short but powerful speech about the injustices done to the Ukrainians and to the Armenians.

She pointed out that it was a “sad irony that people (Alevis, Armenians, Assyrians) who had fled the oppressive Ottoman regime” were labeled ‘Turks’ by the Canadian government and interned for that false identification. She said the same verdict was meted to Ukrainians who had left the oppressive Austro-Hungarian Empire but were interned for having come from that state.

After the ceremonies, Ms. Skrypuch, who has written five books on the Armenian Genocide, unveiled her latest book—“Dance of the Banished”. The novel–a love story based in Dersim–is published by Pajama Press, distributed in the US by Orca Book Publishers, in Canada by UTP Distribution and Amazon.ca

 

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