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Thomas Theiner, a businessman expat who has lived in Ukraine for the past 5 years, on what “business in Ukraine is really like”:
It was not supposed to be this way. Everyone knew that Ukraine was notoriously corrupt under President Viktor Yanukovych’s regime, which demanded a share of every deal and business. The anger at this kleptocracy drove Ukrainians to the streets in 2013-2014. After the Euromaidan, Ukraine was supposed to be a modern, European country.
That hasn’t happened. By now it is clear that the corrupt and thieving government-mafia clans are still in charge.
Businessmen that had managed to survive Yanukovych’s shakedowns are throwing in the towel.
Nigel, a British citizen I know, came to Ukraine in 2004. He and a Ukrainian partner built up an engineering company with more than a hundred employees. In 2011, he won a major contract from the US government, which meant that Yanukovych’s goons went into overdrive to shake him down. In 2013-2014, Nigel supported the Euromaidan enthusiastically, only to be harassed by the new “clean” officials under Poroshenko for their share. With the currency having fallen by over 70 percent, the new authorities demanded three times the money to offset the aforementioned fall. Nigel didn’t buckle, so the authorities revoked his visa, threatened deportation, and harassed the family of his Ukrainian partner. Today, the company is closed, everyone has been fired, and Nigel works in Britain.
The European Choice:
In another story, Sven, one of Scandinavia’s biggest food traders, attempted to source raw materials and basic food products from Ukraine. He believed that the EU-Ukraine association agreement signed in 2014 would finally make sourcing food from Ukraine a viable business. He gave up on Ukraine within a few months: he could not find a single Ukrainian company that didn’t demand an envelope of cash before telling him the prices and available volumes, and then would only give him a competitive price if he agreed to split the profits.
James, who is Australian but has been in Ukraine for sixteen years, worked for an oligarch, and speaks perfect Russian, built one of the premier real estate agencies in Ukraine. This winter, he and his Ukrainian wife went on holiday; when they returned to Kyiv, they discovered that an employee with the backing of some government people had stolen their company. The employee had all the correct documentation and everything signed off by a judge; the only thing missing was the signature of the actual owner. But this is Ukraine, so the employee bribed a judge, the judge ruled in his favor, the employee paid a registrar and a notary, and he now owns the agency.
So who is Theiner anyway?
Oh. Guess not.
The government in Kyiv should announce that Ukraine will take these 6 steps within the next 72 hours:
* Destroy all gas pipelines & bomb the Belarusian gas pipeline, thus launching the boycott of Russian energy that the West has refused to undertake until now.
* Flood Ukraine with small arms by arming every patriotic citizen to unleash a massive guerrilla war when Russian forces invade.
* Provide guerrillas with Anti-tank Guided Missiles, Man Portable Air-defense Missiles, mines, explosives and everything else in Ukraine’s arsenal to ensure the guerrillas can resist effectively for years.
* Call on Ukrainians in the West to attack and kill members of the Putin regime, their associates and close relatives.
* Remove uranium from Ukraine’s nuclear reactors and prepare to disperse it in Russia by all means possible—the Budapest Memorandum depriving Ukraine of nuclear power status is clearly moot now.
* Prepare to shell Belgorod with whatever missiles and artillery Ukraine has in its arsenal to flatten that city.
So basically one of the leading paragons of svidomism is acknowledging what has been evident from the very beginning:
* Opinion polls: Ukrainians Paying MORE Bribes After the Maidan
* At best stagnation, or outright retreat, on indices of transparency and budget openness relative to the “kleptocratic” rule of Yanukovych.
* The Panama Papers, where Poroshenko was named in person
* The former Defense Minister Valery Geletey who promised a victory parade in Sevastopol… by way of the acquisiton of a $36mn estate in the UK.
* The Office of the General Prosecutor announces it is searching for whoever it was that stole the American money for its own reform.
* Lexuses and Mercedes at a summit of Ukraine’s Anti-Corruption Forum.
The smarter sorts of svidomy are going back on their support of Euromaidan and even repudiating their old Russophobia.
Not Thomas Theiner, though:
2/2 corrupt to win a war. With this defeat there will be a REAL revolution in Kyiv, which will cleanse the remnant of #Ukraine of corruption
— Thomas C. Theiner (@noclador) August 10, 2016
For the true svidomy Bolsheviks, the Revolution has a beginning but no end.