The line in the sand was drawn over a month ago when special Berkut forces descended upon peaceful protesters on Kyiv’s Independence Square, also known as Maidan Nezalezhnosti, it new seems that Europe is taking a sado-masochistic approach towards Ukraine. In the last forty-eight hours the powers that be have upped the ante by employing tactics similar to the NKVD/KGB. These have ranged from beatings of members of the Verkhovna Rada to incriminating a Euromaidan participant/organizer of distributing pornography; these are all desperate measures of a criminal regime to instil fear in the population. Yes, I did state criminal regime and if you read on you will understand why I consider it to be one.
Observers of Ukraine have long understood that the rule of law has been diminished to a point of non-existence. The use of the judicial system by the powers that be as a means of quelling protests and to punish dissenters seems to have become the modus operandi of those who have captured the nation of Ukraine in order to rape and pillage her as much as is physically possible while they are in power. Once you understand that political capture has taken place in Ukraine it is a lot easier to understand what has transpired in the last couple of years and why the people of Ukraine want concrete change, and to live in a nation that is governed by the rule of law and the principles of a developed democracy, and not a kleptocracy moving towards a dictatorship.
Over one’s shoulder
When Viktor Yanukovych became president of Ukraine, I called on many individuals in the diaspora to understand the difference between the institution of Ukraine’s presidency and the individual who happened to be elected to replace Ukraine’s incumbent president Viktor Yushchenko the poster boy of the Orange (R)evolution, who somehow never understood that governments are not elected into office they are elected out of office. This was the case with Yushchenko who declared a bunch of false promises on the Maidan in 2004. I was there and I heard it all personally and I am certain that less than 10 percent of his promises were fulfilled. Why? For how much? And more importantly what has it cost the people of Ukraine since Viktor Fedorovych has managed to usurp power in Ukraine?
I’m certain that the first two questions have been answered by some very astute academics, though for the newcomer to Ukrainian politics let’s look at a few of the people that were involved in abortions of democratic principles in 2004 and where they are today. Keep in mind that if you want to move towards being a democracy there should be a number of checks and balances regarding nepotism and conflict of interest in the legislation of a country.
Viktor Yanukovych is the current individual who occupies the institution of the presidency of Ukraine. I personally no longer want to consider him the president of the country, and I am certain there are many Ukrainians who feel the same way. He is supposed to be the guarantor of the Constitution of Ukraine, though his behavior has been far from what anyone can call presidential from his plagiarized book 1 called Opportunity Ukraine to the constitutional changes in order to have more control. “The manner in which these changes were carried out, however, was borderline illegal and consequently led to a gradual erosion of political competition, resulting in the marginalization of Ukraine’s opposition parties and even the Party of Regions’ coalition partners.”2
Andriy Kliuyev was one of the purported co-conspirators of election fraud in the 2004 elections. He now heads the National Security and Defence Council, though let’s take a look at some other interests of the man who had become the Deputy Chairman of the Party of Regions in December of 2001. He later held the position of Minister of Economic Development and Trade from December of 2010. He is not simply a political animal; he has been involved in business. While ghost-writers may have penned Opportunity Ukraine, there was only one thing that was revealed of any true interests in that fictional work. It was revealed by Serhiy Leschenko on Ukrainska Pravda and then further in a translation of his article on EastBook.eu. This article in itself in translation clearly reveals the schemes that have been used to launder money by Ukraine’s oligarchs.
I believe that these two examples in themselves explain a great deal, but for those who don’t understand this take the time to look at the following site: http://yanukovich.info/. It gives a clearer explanation of some of the schemes being used by those who only have one goal, i.e. to abuse their positions in order to enrich themselves and not to abide by any laws of Ukraine.
Understanding a bandit mentality
Having dealt with the business structures in Ukraine I very well understand what is going on, and while there are a few people trying to figure as heroes right now I know who paid them and how they too ingratiated themselves leading up to the Euro-2012. In Ukraine’s budget for 2014 there were a few line items that the incumbent government tried to slip by in order to steal money from the government coffers. In fact two calendar years after the holding of Euro-2012 the current government decided that they would try to sneak in 662 million UAH as part of the preparation for a tournament that took place over a year and a half earlier. This is over $72 million USD from the state coffers. Please explain where such funds are going after the fact that a tournament has already taken place.
In the autumn of 2011, I had made some very clear statements regarding the way that the democratic world had to deal with a bandit that did not understand diplospeak. Over two years ago I wrote the following, but now it is worthwhile repeating because clearly Western diplomats had little understanding of Yanukovych. Now they have seen his wrath and if they cannot understand, then they are not worthy elected officials. The following paragraphs were not only published on Maidan.org but here on my personal blog and on Ukraine Business Online.
“Yanukovych clearly by his rhetoric does not seem concerned with the statements made by the west, and why should this surprise anyone? I have mentioned this thrice; he does not understand diplospeak, and the only way that he will understand is to be dealt with in a manner that those in his world deal with one another, with force.
“’It appears that they have been stringing us along,’ said a senior Western diplomat in Kyiv, to the Financial Times. Maybe some diplomats out there do understand the way Yanukovych and his band of robber barons operate, but maybe they don’t. When I read these kinds of comments veiled behind anonymity there seems to me a preponderance of the latter.
“It is time for Western diplomats to think beyond the box of Western diplomacy, and start to think the way those who are now holding court in Ukraine think. The polite statements in a language that is as foreign to the regime of Yanukovych might as well be delivered in Old Church Slavonic, which is just as foreign to him and his henchmen as the language of diplomacy which to them is an artillery of words, which they simply do not understand.
“Clearly, the West has been strung along by this jester and those who preceded him. But somehow, his predecessors understood diplospeak, and in the past those words were backed up with actions. Because as the idiom goes: “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” It seems that the West for the last couple of years have been in the “shame on me” mode in its relationship with Ukraine, and until their recent statements are followed through with targeted actions which will have direct repercussions on those who have and continue to rape Kateryna, economically and culturally, very little headway will be made.
“The barrage of statements delivered in the direction of those in power in Ukraine has clearly fallen up deaf ears, because until someone finds a way to deliver the message using vocabulary used in the criminal underworld that they will understand there will be no reaction. However, such language just may be understood: ‘You are such a petukh that you are afraid of Volodymyrivna! All you can do is lock her up! You know the only way you can win an election is with her out of the way! You good for nothing mudak!This is the end for you and your groups who care nothing about your country, but only wish to rob its people!’ And once the message is delivered in a language that is understood, then clear and forceful action is required.”
So tell me, when to hell will the West wake up and send a message that is understood by this bandit? It is really time to start hitting him and his cohorts in crime in the same way that he has been hitting the Ukrainian nation and its people, in his wallet and below the belt.
For the Naysayers and European Sado-Masochists
I know there are nay naysayers to the argument that Viktor Fedorovych was democratically elected, and it may very well be the case; however, his method of installing the members of his inner circle into key positions and then changing Ukraine’s Constitution are completely different matters and are as far from democracy as was the USSR. Then there is also the matter of how his son Oleksandr managed from going from a virtual unknown individual to someone who has a net worth of over $510 million in three short years. It doesn’t take a financial wizard or a top analyst from Standard & Poor’s to understand that there was a little financial hanky-panky that must have gone on in order for anyone to rise to such meteoric wealth in such a short period of time.
While many have been calling for some type of sanctions against the inner circle of friends of Yanukovych, mechanisms have existed for some time under the Financial Action Task Force, more commonly known by its acronym FAFT and what are known as Politically Exposed Persons.
Under the FAFT guidelines, there are two particular rules which deal with Politically Exposed Persons, and for you all to understand this. According to FAFT guidance directives: “A politically exposed person (PEP) is an individual who is or has been entrusted with a prominent function. Many PEP’s hold positions that can be abused for the purpose of laundering illicit funds or other predicate offences such as corruption or bribery.” So who to heck doesn’t understand this? It sure as heck it is not individuals who have to make the decisions on behalf of the countries they represent when it comes to the principles of FAFT, and even moreso when it comes to what are called Recommendations 12 and 22. Clearly there is no political will on the part of countries, signatories to FAFT, to ensure that their banking systems work in accordance to regulations that they have become signatories to.
As a reminder, Recommendation 12 states the following in short:
“Key to the effective implementation of Recommendation 12 is the effective implementation of customer due diligence requirements: for financial institutions to know who their customers are. External sources of information for determining PEPs exist, such as commercial and other databases, and the paper provides some guidance on the use of these, and other, external sources of information.” The full text of the recommendations can be found at the link below:
http://www.fatf-gafi.org/media/fatf/d … Guidance-PEP-Rec12-22.pdf
So simply look at how due diligence may not have been conducted on a number of individuals who have politically captured Ukraine.
The way I look at matters is that there are individuals or financial entities in Europe that are not following through on their local legislation regarding FAFT recommendations. In short, given that these regulations exist, why is it that financial institutions have not been following such directives? They are in fact extremely simple – particularly if there is the political will to do so but as I see it there has simply been no political will on the part of countries where Ukraine’s robber barons have parked their cash.
Pornography of a different type
Let’s not stop at these tools but let’s make the entire bandit clan personae non grata, from the man who is in the position of the presidency to his press people who must have no consciousness of what they are doing in supporting such a structure. Individuals have to understand the difference between what is right and what is wrong – and stop just saying, “It’s my job!”
Why do I think this way? Because, the bastardisation of the legal system has led to using the dissemination of pornography as a tool against individuals who are not as corrupt as the criminal regime that is trying to maintain a grip on control. They have taken the “rule of law” to the grounds of obscenity in their own corrupt way of understanding the law. They will try to obfuscate anything that does not fit into their framework as being “illegal”. While Lord Acton is no longer alive today, his opinion in a letter to Bishop Mandell Creighton in 1887 would befit Ukraine’s current situation: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
Let us take look at some of the most resonant matters that have been perpetuated by those trying to cling to power.
November 30, 2013 – Brutal attack on peaceful protestors on Independence Square in Kyiv:
December 13, 2013 – Euromaidan organizers in Kharkiv have a rented vehicle torched;
December 16, 2013 – Journalist Svitlana Malytska from Road Control assaulted in an elevator;
December 18, 2013 – Pavlo Mazurenko, innocent by-standard beaten by Berkut, died in hospital December 22, 2013;
December 20, 2013 – Euromaidan Office in Kharkiv vandalized;
December 21, 2013 – Activist from Road Control Volodymyr Maralov shot
December 24, 2013 – Second vehicle in Kharkiv set ablaze;
December 24, 2013 – Kharkiv Euromaidan activist Dmytro Pylypets knifed;
December 25, 2013 – Opposition activist and journalist Tetyana Chornovol beaten and probably left for dead;
December 27, 2013 – Sixth crime against Kharkiv Euromaidan, third car set ablaze;
January 3, 2014 – Member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Andriy Iliennko and his lawyer Sydor Kizin are attacked and beaten in the centre of Kyiv;
January 4, 2014 – Kharkiv Euromaidan activist Oleksandr Chyzhov accused of distributing pornography;
January 7, 2014 – 23 year old Euromaidan activist Ihor Mashkevych in Dnipropetrovsk, beaten over the head with a pipe; the victim is in hospital with a concussion and sixteen stitches.
There have been plenty of other incidents of attacks, assaults, intimidation by those in “epaulettes” and affiliated persons. So let’s try to understand why?
The Police to Population Ratio
Nearly twenty years ago I was visiting with a friend of mine in Western Ukraine who happened to be a Senior Lieutenant responsible for staffing in the police force. She told me about the discrepancies that existed in the police service in Ukraine. In about 2007 Natalia Petrivna explained to me how things became even more disproportionate and how there was a higher influx of uneducated individuals in policing services in Ukraine. Individuals from villages just trying to make ends meet by finding their way into a corrupt system that would pay them very little but that they could try to milk.
That system of the various police forces under bandit Yanukovych have over the years been expanded, and I understood this would happen without individuals who would tell me even if I am living in Canada. In one of the most populous provinces of Canada, Ontario, these are the following salary expectancies:
The OPP prides itself on how it treats its employees. Not only does it provide excellent wages they offer superior benefits.
Table 1: OPP Salary Grid
|Position||Service Time||Salary (per year)|
|Recruit Constable(5th Class)||From the first day of training||$ 45,833.00|
|Probationary Constable (4th Class)||After graduation from training||$ 58,437.00|
|Constable (3rd Class)||$ 66,790.00|
|Constable (2nd Class)||$ 74,304.00|
|Constable (1st Class)||After 36 months||$ 83,483.00|
In Ukraine the average police officer cannot expect to receive more than about a 2000 UAH monthly salary. Yes, that comes to a little over … and from data that is available, Ukraine has about 644 at a minimum and other sources say that it is closer to 800 police officers to 100,000 population. In Canada that number stands at closer to 202 per 100,000. And why was it that I felt that there were no police around when I returned to Canada in 2009? Yet this was the norm I grew up with and I never expected any cop to be on the take as a law abiding citizen in Canada. When I returned to Canada in 2009, the first time I saw a cop was after I was there for three weeks. In Ukraine it is the norm that you will see a cop at least twenty times during your daily routine. In all honesty what are they doing? What are they costing the population and who are they really serving?
In having a little bit of a better understanding of what is going on in Ukraine, why to heck is the rest of the world not reacting to the human right’s violations that have been going on in the last six weeks. These are not simple occurrences; these are systemic persecutions of individuals who are trying to express their will as human beings and in a “democratic” state under a so-called “democratic” Ukraine.
If there are states who purportedly sign on to agreements and then do not follow through on ensuring that the laws of their lands are upheld, then they themselves are as guilty of the harm that comes to any protester in Ukraine through their inaction.
If you live in a country where the bandits of Ukraine have tried to hide their ill-gotten wealth, please do write your governments so that they adhere to the agreements they signed under FAFT many years ago. If they cannot at least adhere to such agreements, how to hell can anyone expect them to even impose travel restrictions on Ukraine’s elite that has been plundering the country!
1 Goodman, David, “Ukraine’s President Accused of Plagiarism” The New York Times, The Lede – Blogging the News with Robert Mackey, http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2011 … nt-accused-of-plagiarism/ January 5, 2014.
2 Matuszak, Sławomir; Sarna, Arkadiusz “From Stabilization to Stagnation: Viktor Yanukovych’s Reforms” Point of View, March 2013, Number 32, p. 5 http://www.osw.waw.pl/sites/default/files/pw_32_ang_net.pdf January 5, 2014.