Friday, February 27, 2015

The 'Witch Hunt' And Purge Begins In Ukraine

Ukraine President Poroshenko

Mark Varga, National Interest: Exposed: Ukraine's Massive Witch Hunt

Tackling corruption, or an old-fashioned purge?

It has become somewhat of a cliché to say that Ukraine is Europe’s most corrupt country. While the the IMF agreed on February 12 to extend to Kyiv a new $17.5 billion rescue package over four years in exchange for continued structural reforms, the real question is if staving off the country from an imminent default at the hands of international creditors (read, Russia) would be enough. Why? Because one of the unanswered questions for Kyiv’s leaders is whether they have the mettle to deal with the country’s public enemy #2: corruption.

WNU Editor: Kudos to the National Interest for posting this story .... most Western outlets for their own reasons have refused to acknowledge this growing injustice. If you are a Ukrainian-Russian employed by the Ukraine government or by any of its state companies .... it is a guarantee that you will soon find yourself unemployed or .... having zero prospects for advancement. And while I do understand the need to purge corrupt officials and bureaucrats .... I know that it is not being employed in such a matter. The review of property holdings is also a frightening development .... one in which is having a direct impact on my relatives in Kiev. They own a number of commercial properties a block away from the Maidan .... bought on the open market using funds borrowed from Ukraine and foreign banks almost 20 years ago (fortunately these loans were paid off a few years ago). But even though they have clear title paid for properties that were purchased on the open market .... they are being subjected to these reviews. To say that they are nervous is an understatement .... because from their experience they know that much of these decisions are usually based on "expecting to be paid off" or finding yourself in the courts facing a judiciary that is in itself corrupt. As I always am telling people who are interested in investing in Ukraine (especially now because of the collapse of the currency) .... corruption has always been an endemic part of Ukraine society .... it will touch you even if you try your best to avoid it.

On a personal note .... of all the cities in the world that I have visited and/or lived in .... Odessa is on the top of the list .... and it has just been brought to my attention that a home that I have always admired is now up for sale at a ridiculously low price (no surprise there .... the Ukraine currency has collapsed, so foreign currency is king). It is on the Black Sea .... and I cannot adequately explain how beautiful the building and location is. And while I am definitely tempted to take the plunge .... in view of the utter chaos in the country .... and in view of what I have just stated in this commentary .... would it be a smart move? Sighhh .... this is why I hate what is happening in Ukraine right now .... people's lives are being impacted on every level .... from those who have lost loved ones in this war and who will forever suffer because of it, to little old me who now sees his dream home up for sale .... but who is afraid to take the risk.


Unknown said...

There is a freedom index that is published yearly.

Is there a corruption index?

That would roll into a freedom index, but I think it needs to be broken out and examined and reported on its' own.

Americans take great pride in being less corrupt than most nations in South America, Africa or Asia. I believed it. How true is it anymore?

On a 10 point scale I would have said it was a 1 or 2?

Now I would give it a 3 or a 4. Net neutrality anyone?

That is better than some place like Ukraine which might range from 5 to 7.

But it is not much of a difference anymore and the trend is getting worse.

Jay Farquharson said...


Transparency International publishesh annually a Corruption Index.

Denmark is the least corrupt, with a score of 92,

The US is in 17th with a score of 74,

The Ukraine is in 142nd place with a score of 26.

Unknown said...

Or looking at its' compliment 26.

26 out of a 100

is roughly 3 out 10.

I gave Ukraine a score of 5 to 7 out of 10. I a gave myself wide latitude in assigning the score, because i have not been there, do not know all the specifics and do not want to piss people off.

But the complement of 26 is 74 which is ~ 7 out of 10.

Unknown said...



I have it bookmarked for future use. Have to check their criteria.

Jay Farquharson said...

WNU Editor,

Get ready to be swamped with spam:

According to several bloggers who took advantage of the "open casting call", the Information Army has been instructed to create false Social Media accounts, pretending to be in the DPR and LPR, and how to bolster those account's "authenticity", through innocuous non-political posts wand web hosted photo's.

Jay Farquharson said...


The other way of looking at it, is 148th out of 174, barely beating out Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Lybia, North Korea, Sudan, Yemen, Haiti, the Congo, and their score has'nt changed much in a decade.

War News Updates Editor said...

Jay .... I was thinking about putting up a post on that Newsweek story .... but then I said to myself "why do I want to attract the attention". :)

James said...

Buy it. But, consider the money gone.

War News Updates Editor said...

You sound like my mom James. :)

oldfatslow said...

I don't see a lot of
corruption at the day
to day level, but it's
only a matter of time
before the political
corruption at the pointy
end of the pyramid flows
down to all of us at
the bottom..


oldfatslow said...

In the US - I mean.