An article titled "Servant of the Corrupt" outlines the scale of official and quasi-governmental corruption in Ukraine, and the ties of the corrupt to US politicians. It's staggering in its extent. It also makes clear that the $40 billion US aid package recently approved for Ukraine is almost certainly going to be looted by politicians and oligarchs on both sides of the Atlantic - at the expense of the US taxpayer.
ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PRESIDENT ZELENSKY, OLIGARCH IHOR KOLOMOISKY AND WASHINGTON DC
Zelensky didn’t have trouble incinerating vaunted democratic norms well-before Russia crossed the Rubicon into Ukraine this year. So it was no surprise when he did it again amid the war in late March, invoking emergency powers under martial law to nationalize TV channels and ban 11 opposition parties, including OPZZh — all supposedly done in the name of combatting Russian misinformation and Russian sympathizers, even though OPZZh’s then-chairman, Yuriy Boyko, denounced the war and called for a ceasefire and the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine. Zelensky, however, wouldn’t miss another opportunity to clip the wings of political opposition in his country, certainly not now that Western media rationalizes and glorifies his every move.
But the portrait of the Ukraine President as a democratic paragon whitewashes the real Zelensky and conceals a vast web of corruption and international skullduggery of which Ukraine is situated in the centre. Understanding the real Zelensky, requires seeing him as a creation of Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky. He is, in truth, a puppet of intrigue.
It might be hard to believe now, but revelations from documents in the Pandora Papers — millions of files from offshore service providers leaked to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with partners around the world — sent Zelensky reeling last year, threatening to end his political career. Though the actor-turned-politico campaigned as an anti-corruption reformer, the Pandora Papers showed him to be just as crooked as his predecessors.
Of more than 300 politicians and public officials, including several current and former national leaders, in more than 91 countries and territories to whom the documents were linked, Ukraine was home to more secret offshore holdings than any other, including Russia.
. . .
Zelensky, the creation of an oligarch, campaigned for president as the character he played in a comedy series with a party named after the show to victory in 2019. During the race, Volodymyr Ariev, a political ally of incumbent President Poroshenko, posted a chart on Facebook claiming it showed how Zelensky and his television production partners were beneficiaries of a constellation of offshore firms which allegedly received millions from Kolomoisky’s PrivatBank.
The allegations were dismissed as baseless at the time, but the Pandora Papers revealed that information on several companies in the network corresponded with Ariev’s chart, the OCCRP noted.
Shortly after taking the reins, Zelensky and his Servant of the People party began firing, supposedly for inefficiency, Ukrainian ministers with reputations as anti-corruption reformers. Daria Kaleniuk, head of Ukraine’s Anti-Corruption Action Center, told the Washington Post in March 2020 that the affair sent the message that Zelensky “can fire a person who takes a risk, for doing the right things, and blame this person for inefficiency.” Kiev-based reform reporter Oleg Sukhov echoed the sentiment last year, writing that “Zelensky has consistently protected corrupt officials from prosecution and killed anti-corruption reforms.” On the other hand, when faced with a petition calling for his dismissal, Zelensky refused to fire Oleh Tatarov, his deputy chief of staff, who had been charged with bribery.
The people put on the chopping block were also the ones most likely to threaten the power of oligarchs like Kolomoisky, from whom Zelensky may have learned a thing or two.
. . .
The war has completely reinvented Zelensky, thus saving his scandal-plagued presidency marked by broken promises. As a Kyiv International Institute of Sociology poll showed, just 24 percent of voters supported him in late January. But now, thanks to the West’s embracement of the actor’s new persona which often places him beyond reproach, Zelensky has become the recipient of unqualified adoration and enormous amounts of international aid money. “Before the war the U.S. was sending $300 million per year to Ukraine,” said to NPR Mark Cancian, a senior adviser at the Center for International and Strategic Studies. Now, we’re providing $100 million a day to what was until recently considered “the most corrupt nation in Europe.”
There's more at the link.
The old rule of "Follow the money" proves itself accurate yet again. I hope investigative journalists are keeping a very close eye on the bank accounts of our politicians, and others that they may not have in their names, but still control. I'm willing to bet a very large sum of money that a big chunk - perhaps well over half - of that $40 billion aid package for Ukraine is going to end up in those bank accounts.
I hope my fellow taxpayers are as overjoyed as I am to be contributing to the enrichment of the corrupt.