Following the recent de-communisation laws passed in the Verkhovna Rada the renaming the Sovietized names of some Ukrainian cities has now, quite correctly, become a hot topic.
The reluctance to do this after more than two decades of independence was an absolutely unbelievable disgrace to the shame of all previous administrations.
First on the list for change is undoubtedly Dnipropetrovsk, named after the infamous Hrigoriy Ivanovich Petrovsky, one of organizers of the genocidal 1932-33 famine in Ukraine.
Next should be Kirovohrad, named after Sergei Mironovich Kirov head of the Leningrad Communist Party. Kirov's 1934 assassination served as one of the pretexts for Stalin's escalation of repression against dissident elements of the Party, culminating in the Great Purges of the late 1930s
Dniprodzerzhynsk is named after Felix Dzerzhynsky, founder of the Bolshevik secret police, the Cheka - responsible for vast numbers of summary executions.
Tsyurupinsk in the Kherson region was named in honour of Alexander Tsyurupa, RSFSR People's Commissar of food in 1918-1921 and head of Gosplan. During his period in office mass forcible seizure of grain and food from the local population by Bolsheviks was common practice. The city has been trying to change its name to Oleshky for several years, indicating that at least some people demand change.
[More on this story and background on other cities here, in an article from gordon.ua]
p.s. Why should any sane person be against renaming cities, currently associated with such hideous personages, by law? Is this indication of the serf-like mentality of some Ukrainians, ready to accept humiliation for a crust of bread thrown down to them by 'pany'?
Also - Latest opinion polls indicate ever-increasing numbers of Ukrainians would like to see their country part of the NATO alliance. Even around 20% of Donbas residents support future membership.