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Bogdan Chmielnicki
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    Born in Subotiv, near Chyhyryn, Ukraine
    Name translates in Ukrainian to Bohdan Khmelnytky
    Birth name was Bohdan Zynoviy Mykhailovych Khmelnytsky
    Hetman of the Zaporozhian Host of the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland in the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth (now territory in Ukraine)
    Led an uprising against the Commonwealth and its magnates, resulting in the creation of a Ukrainian Cossack state (1648-1654)
    Signed the Treaty of Pereyaslav with the Tsardom of Russia (1654)
    Led the infamous Chmielnitzki massacres of 1648-1649, directed primarily toward Poland's Jewish population
    He was characterized negatively in Henryk Sienkiewicz's historical epic, 'With Fire and Sword.'
    He has been dually compared to Moses, Haman, and Judas, depending on the ethnic group who is asked (polarizing...)
    He is historically recognized as a Cossack patriot, but he likely wasn't a Cossack by birth.
    His status as a national Ukrainian icon is obscured by history's harsh judgment of his rabid brutality and anti-Semitism.
    He has been called a sellout by some Ukrainians, one whose embrace of Imperial Russia and Crimean Tartars led to the enslavement of his countrymen.
    Contemporary period portraits of him aren't very flattering; usually resembling Vlad the Imaler (or Adolf Hitler if he sported a handle-bar stache).
    Like Hitler, he had an indiscriminate hatred of all Jews, and he carried a 'Nazi-like' scapegoat war on European Jewry three centuries before the Holocaust.
    The Chmielnitzki massacres, carried out over a year, took an estimated toll of 100,000 Jewish lives when the world's Jewish population numbered no more than a million and a half.
    The massacres are still considered a traumatic period in Jewish history and historical accounts are brutal in their detail (live burials, murdering children/pregnant women, cutting Jews to pieces and feeding them to dogs, etc.)
    The trauma associated with the massacres was deemed to be so horrible that they were key factors in the subsequent Jewish worship of the false Messiah, Sabbatai Zevi less than two decades later.
    His original 1888 monument statue depicted his horse triumphantly stomping over and trampling a Pole, Jew, and a Catholic priest under its hoofs (for some crazy reason, Russian officials deemed it too xenophobic and ordered it to be refigured...)
    He was ranked by Ukrainian schoolchildren as the most important nationalist figure, even though those same kids listed his signing the Pereiaslav Treaty as the most tragic moment in their nation's history, second only to the Great Famine of 1933, under Stalin.
    He was disliked by Andrea Dworkin (thereby he was in good company).
    He has been featured on Ukrainian currency bills since 1996.
    He influenced components of the protagonist in Nikolai Gogol's 'Taras Bulba.'
    He has been likened to Oliver Cromwell and George Washington by Slavic historians.
    The Ukrainian national anthem is based off of an 1862 Pavlo Chubynsky poem centered on Chmielnicki.
    He was a diplomat of the first order; negotiating with major empires and powerful states with control over Cossack territories in exchange for protection.
    He was committed to diplomacy even in his final years, when he insisted on conducting negotiations with Russian envoys from his deathbed.
    His death preceded a period of turmoil for the Cossack state, in which it was promptly partitioned by competing Slavic spheres of influence.
    He is recognized as a symbol of unification of the Russian people -Great, Little and White Russia (Orthodox Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians), a feat unaccomplished since the days of Kiev Rus.
    Viktor Yushchenko's 2005 inaugural ceremony included a mace used by Chmielmicki, which was lent to Kiev by the Warsaw Military Museum specifically for the occasion.

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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