[Pga_europe_process] Fwd: <alter-ee> Who is Yushchenko?

paki.tv at cyber-rights.net paki.tv at cyber-rights.net
Sun Nov 28 16:41:30 CET 2004


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- ----- Forwarded message from Laure <cube at zigzag.pl> -----
I am also hoping to get more analyses of the Ukraine situation from
our
comrades but, realistically, people on the spot probably are
involved in
something and won't have too much time for such requests. Maybe we
can get
some translations soon.

In general, I wanted to refrain from writing a long commentary on
Ukraine
for two reasons: the first being that I don't have too great a
knowledge of
the political scene there (just basic) and the second being that I
am not on
location, I haven't talked to the comrades yet and, quite simply, I
do not
believe in making judgments from newspaper articles or what I see
on TV. (I
was a participant of the 1991 events in Moscow and, a month or two
later,
finding out what CNN and the media had presented, it felt like they
had
created a fictious event. ) Still, I have a few words on
Yushchenko, the
bastard, and some other things. Our friends from ABB would like a
little
more analysis then "he's no good", but I thought some reasons why
he's no
good might be needed. Also, I suppose some of this info is unknown
in some
places. Well, here on some random thoughts.

MARKOV'S THEORY ON YUSHCHENKO AND THE POLISH REACTION

Sergei Markov is an Russian political analyst known to maybe
English
speaking readers through articles in the Moscow Times and other
publications. He is also a close ally of Putin and was an advisor
to
Yanukovich. Putting this potential bias aside, Markov has been,
since
2000 -2001, complaining of the so-called Brzezinski Plan.

Anybody who has read the Grand Chessboard can understand a little
of the
American's geo-political interest in Ukraine and Central Asia.
(I've
included some excerpts at the end.) To be brief, there are several
issues at
stake:

1. A Pro-Western, pro-NATO Ukraine is another loss for the
Russians.
2. Ukraine, with over 50 million people and with a relatively poor
population is a good market for goods and labour if run by
pro-western-capitalist interests.
3. The Brody oil pipeline is currently used for Russian oil
interests. The
Americans and Europeans, who would like to weaken Russia's strong
oil
imports (which is practically the life blood of the economy), would
prefer
Condi Rice's Chevron or some American firms working in the Caspian
to be
able to use this oil pipeline to supply Central European Countries
(like
Poland). (The pipeline goes through Georgia. Figure it out.)

The main aspect of the Brzezinski Plan is the idea that the
Russians have
not been totally subjugated to the interests of Western Capital and
to do
that, you have to chip away at their areas of influence.

So yes, the Cold War is still alive in Washington think tanks and
Brzezinski
is helped along by his sons, notably by Ian (advisor to Bush). Is
Yushchenko
then, a member of a conspiracy?

The Polish press, reporting on Markov's ideas just make fun of them
and
dismissed them as some Russian paranoia, and, although I obviously
cannot
find "proof" of a conspiracy, we can clearly see that Yushchenko
was in very
tight with all the usual anti-communist, free-market important
players. One
has to ask how and why a political player who was sacked from his
job and
was accused of defrauding the IMF managed to have such political
clout in
Washington.

When I talk about this, I refer to the fact that, for example, last
year, on
a trip to Washington, Yushchenko met with Cheney, Armitage,
Brzezinski,
McCain, Albright, etc. The number of visits Yushchenko has had with
American
think-tankers, notably with Brzezinski leaves no doubt in my mind
that he
was "Washington's Candidate".  Anybody who understands the media
and State
Department spin can see this; and of course we know that vote fraud
only
concerns Americans when their candidate is on the wrong end.

AMERICAN (AND GERMAN) MONEY MADE YUSHCHENKO

While we cannot blindly trust the media, nor can we trust
presidential
investigations, I find that some of the "facts" presented in the
course of
the commissions investigation on the role of NGOs in Ukraine
(started last
year) to not only be credible, but to be backed up by facts. The
idea is
that NGOs and funding of Our Ukraine and Yulia Tymoshenko's group
by US
think tanks was meant to bring Kuchma down. Typical donors include
Freedom
House, the National Democratic Institute, the Intenational
Republican
Institute the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the British Westminister
Fund for
Democracy, etc.

One must look at such facts with a critical eye. On the other hand,
the
Ukrainian and Russian media have, at times, gone overboard with
their tales
of espionage, even claiming that Soros went to Ukraine to train
Crimean
Tatars how to storm the government.

YANUKOVICH TRIED TO BRIBE THE DEMOCRATS

Last week (Sept. 20), there was an article in the Washington Post
which
shows that, however much we think that Yushchenko is "American's
candidate",
we have to remember about the political divide in America.

According the the Post, during the second round of the elections
"Hundreds
of U.S. and European monitors are traveling to Kiev to observe
Sunday's
runoff, including some funded by the U.S. government through the
State
Department and the Agency for International Development (USAID).
Together,
they have dispersed $7.9 million to help Ukrainian and American
pro-democracy groups monitor the elections and $13. 7 million for
"activities related to the presidential election."

BUT, this fact, that the State Department and USAID, (suspicious
players)
took a big interest in monitoring the fairness of the second round
(they'd
been worried about "potential vote rigging for a long time"),
contrasts
greatly with the report made by American observers after the first
round who
claimed that elections were held fairly.

On Nov. 10, there was a meeting at a think tank, the Nixon Center,
about the
elections and there surfaced the first allegations that actually,
the first
observers, former Democratic Congressmen, were being paid by
Yanukovich. The
Alliance for Democracy and Transparency is apparently headed by an
agent of
Yanukovich and paid foreign observers a modest stipend to come to
Ukraine.
The financing of the entire trip was $125,000 and created a
corruption
scandal.

Why this think tank receiving $125,000 from Yanukovich is worse
than the
State Department, USAID and several CIA fronts supporting
Yushchenko and
spend $13.7 million in undisclosed "activities relating to the
presidential
election" is just one of these great mysteries.

By the way, at the think tank meeting, the head of the Alliance for
Democracy and Transparency apparently lied about where the funding
for the
trip was coming from, so the Dems apparently "had no idea" that
this money
was from Yanukovich. So, either this was a lie and they agreed to
work
pro-Yanukovich (which leads to interesting questions) or they
really didn't
know and really found the election fair. Either scenario is
compellingly
interesting.

COULD THE RESULTS BE FRAUDLENT?

Of course. I suspect that vote fraud is more the norm than the
exception
these days. This aside, there is an interesing question about
Yanukovich's
support in the Eastern regions, notably in Donetsk.

Ukrainian think tankers of a pro-nationalist bent have their own
conspiracy
theories of Kuchma coming uo with an idea of using ethnic hatred
against
Yushchenko. By showing Yushchenko as a nationalist, they could
descredit him
in the east.

No doubt they took advantage of this. It's easy. Yushchenko IS a
nationalist. But the problems with Yushchenko run deeping than
this.

Nobody is talking about Yushchenko's economic policies in the media
but I'd
describe him as a Balcerowicz without the brains or the heart. A
monetarist
and neo-liberal monster, no wonder the IMF forgave his creative
accounting.
He is the man who can implement the Plan. And high up on the IMF's
plan is
the restructuring of the mining industry.

The current talk is that is Yushchenko is president, he'll shut
down the
mines. It's not a fact that he'd shut them down completely though:
he's come
up with a "more humanistic" solution - to turn coal miners into
hourly-paid
workers instead of F/T workers with a steady job. This is much more
creative
and responsive to the market. And not much better for the workers.
Incredibly, he claims that such a plan would significantly raise
their
standard of living.

Several times, including at a rally in Donetsk, Yushchenko was
accosted by
miners. But the reasons who this can go beyond these superficial
analyses
and theories - that Kuchma incited this or that it's all about
identification with Russia. There is also a highly critical strain
against
free market economics, against NATO, against the West, etc. etc.

Yushchenko should also be looked at from a class analysis.

WAS THE US SPYING ON KUCHMA?

This was the accusation made against Melnychenko who taped Kuchma's
offices
in 1999-2000 which led to Kuchma gate. The popular theory being
that the
Americans tried to destablize the Ukrainian government in 2000 and
replace
Kuchma with their man, Yushchenko, then.

THE ELECTION GAME

Georgia, Central Asia. Make sure the public knows which side you
are on. It
doesn't always work. Georgia got its pro-US puppet but others kept
their
non-US sponsored but authoritarian leaders.

THE RETURN OF POLAND

If you think positive media coverage of the "Cellophane Revolution"
(aka the
Orange Revolution, depending on whose TV stations who watch) in
your country
is something, you have no idea what sort of political frenzy is
going on in
Poland. Demos, concerts, solidarity actions and international
brigades, the
entire Sejm heading to Ukraine after the President - we hear over
and over
how Warsaw and Kiev share "a common cause". But there's something
much
deeper than democracy or anti-communism. A careful look at what's
going on
in the popular mood and political realia shows that Poland has the
same
political and economic interests in Ukraine as Russia and,
essentially the
same attitude that Ukraine is somehow it's sphere of influence.
More than
the prestige of being called to mediate, more than any fake love of
democracy, Polish politicians are waiting to cash in on the
political bonanz
a that Poland will have if Ukraine is very tight with Poland.
Further, the
right's nostalgia for the former Polish territories is quite clear
and, even
if they don't call for return of Lwow, Ukraine must be pro-Polish,
Catholic
leaning, open to Polish economic and cultural influence and,
presumably, the
increased presence of Poles. Poland with important influence in
Ukraine is
the goal and will increase Poland's prestige in international
matters.

ISN'T PROTEST BETTER THAN FRAUD?

A hard question to answer. Obviously, people need to get angry when
elections are rigged. On the other hand, the pro-Yushchenko fans
are
obviously choosing the other side of the statist coin. The
dominance of
capitalism in world ideology and myth seems clear. Rather than
choosing to
fight for "freedom", they are opting for another form of slavery.
Not all
protests are our protests. Not all revolutions are a celebration.
The beautiful thing about moments like this is seeing how the
people are
potentially able to mobilize themselves into civic action. The bad
part is
that once their man is in office, all they'll care about is eating
trying to
be good consumers and retaining their places in the atomized and
hierarchical society.

BRZEZINSKI

(Excerpts)

 Today, the geopolitical issue is no longer what geographic part of
Eurasia
is the point of departure for continental domination, nor whether
land power
is more significant than sea power. Geopolitics has moved from the
regional
to the global dimension, with preponderance over the entire
Eurasian
continent serving as the central basis for global primacy. The
United
States, a non-Eurasian power, now enjoys international primacy,
with its
power directly deployed on three peripheries of the Eurasian
continent, from
which it exercises a powerful influence on the states occupying the
Eurasian
hinterland. But it is on the globe's most important playing field --

Eurasia -- that a potential rival to America might at some point
arise.
Thus, focusing on the key players and properly assessing the
terrain has to
be the point of departure for the formulation of American
geostrategy for
the long-term management of America's Eurasian geopolitical
interests.

Two basic steps are thus required:

*first, to identify the geostrategically dynamic Eurasian states
that have
the power to cause a potentially important shift in the
international
distribution of power and to decipher the central external goals of
their
respective political elites and the likely consequences of their
seeking to
attain them; and to pinpoint the geopolitically critical Eurasian
states
whose location and/or existence have catalytic effects either on
the more
active geostrategic players or on regional conditions;

* second, to formulate specific US policies to offset, co-opt,
and/or
control the above, so as to preserve and promote vital US
interests, and to
conceptualize a more comprehensive geostrategy that establishes on
a global
scale the interconnection between the more specific US policies.

In brief, for the United States, Eurasian geostrategy involves the
purposeful management of geostrategically dynamic states and the
careful
handling of geopolitically catalytic states, in keeping with the
twin
interests of America in the short-term preservation of its unique
global
power and in the long-run transformation of it into increasingly
institutionalized global cooperation. To put it in a terminology
that
hearkens back to the more brutal age of ancient empires, the three
grand
imperatives of imperial geostrategy are to prevent collusion and
maintain
security dependence among the vassals, to keep tributaries pliant
and
protected, and to keep the barbarians from coming together.
............

  In the current global circumstances, at least five key
geostrategic
players and five geopolitical pivots (with two of the latter
perhaps also
partially qualifying as players) can be identified on Eurasia's new
political map. France, Germany, Russia, China, and India are major
and
active players, whereas Great Britain, Japan, and Indonesia, while
admittedly very important countries, do not so qualify. Ukraine,
Azerbaijan,
South Korea, Turkey, and Iran play the role of critically important
geopolitical pivots, though both Turkey and Iran are to some extent
- --
within their more limited capabilities -- also geostrategically
active. More
will be said about each in subsequent chapters.

........

 Ukraine, a new and important space on the Eurasian chessboard, is
a
geopolitical pivot because its very existence as an independent
country
helps to transform Russia. Without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be a
Eurasian
empire. Russia without Ukraine can still strive for imperial
status, but it
would then become a predominantly Asian imperial state, more likely
to be
drawn into debilitating conflicts with aroused Central Asians, who
would
then be resentful of the loss of their recent independence and
would be
supported by their fellow Islamic states to the south. China would
also be
likely to oppose any restoration of Russian domination over Central
Asia,
given its increasing interest in the newly independent states
there.
However, if Moscow regains control over Ukraine, with its 52
million people
and major resources as well as its access to the Black Sea, Russia
automatically again regains the wherewithal to become a powerful
imperial
state, spanning Europe and Asia. Ukraine's loss of independence
would have
immediate consequences for Central Europe, transforming Poland into
the
geopolitical pivot on the eastern frontier of a united Europe.

 Despite its limited size and small population, Azerbaijan, with
its vast
energy resources, is also geopolitically critical. It is the cork
in the
bottle containing the riches of the Caspian Sea basin and Central
Asia. The
independence of the Central Asian states can be rendered nearly
meaningless
if Azerbaijan becomes fully subordinated to Moscow's control.
Azerbaijan's
own and very significant oil resources can also be subjected to
Russian
control, once Azerbaijan's independence has been nullified. An
independent
Azerbaijan, linked to Western markets by pipelines that do not pass
through
Russian-controlled territory, also becomes a major avenue of access
from the
advanced and energy-consuming economies to the energy rich Central
Asian
republics. Almost as much as in the case of Ukraine, the future of
Azerbaijan and Central Asia is also crucial in defining what Russia
might or
might not become.


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