Author Archives: RomanInUkraine

Horrible Corruption! Ukrainian Kangaroo Court says nationalization of Privat Bank illegal.

The ruling is a big setback for the government, which wrested PrivatBank from Kolomoisky, a co-founder of the bank, in December 2016.

PrivatBank was nationalized as part of a clean-up of the banking system backed by the International Monetary Fund, which supports Ukraine with a $3.9 billion loan program.

Ukraine’s dollar-denominated Ukraine bonds fell more than 1 percent after the ruling by a Kiev court as President Petro Poroshenko said in a televised address that overturning nationalization threatened “default and a new economic crisis.”
Related Coverage

He has previously said that any backsliding on PrivatBank would spark a “deep crisis in relations with the IMF.”

The central bank said it was impossible to reverse the nationalization and it would appeal against the ruling.

After taking over the bank the government had said it wanted to recover money it says was siphoned out while Kolomoisky owned it. It has shored up the lender with billions of dollars since it was nationalized.

Kolomoisky denies any wrongdoing and says the bank was forcibly nationalized without proper justification.

(humor) Pope Francis Mourns Excess Carbon Emissions Given Off By Notre Dame Fire

Pope Francis has called for a time of mourning within the Catholic Church after the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris burned earlier this week.

The period of mourning is said to be a time of weeping for the extra carbon dioxide emissions let off into the air from the fires.

“Court” Returning Privat Bank to Kolomoiski!?????

This is outrageous. So depressing. Ukraine has a bazaar instead of a legal system.

Kolomoiski stoke $5 Billion from Ukraine, whose M2 monetary supply is less than $50B.

The District Administrative Court of Kyiv satisfied Igor Kolomoisky’s claim to the National Bank and the Cabinet of Ministers regarding the privatization of Privatbank.

This is stated on the official website of the court.

The court found it illegal and abolished the decision to withdraw the insolvent “Privatbank” from the market with the participation of the state.

“The court … recognized the illegal decisions of the defendants, which resulted in the nationalization of PJSC CB” Privatbank “, and declared invalid from the moment of the conclusion of a contract of sale by the state of the bank’s shares,” the statement reads.

According to judges, the procedure for withdrawal of “Privatbank” from the market violated the norms of the current legislation.

“The grounds for adopting such a decision were, among other things, the lack of knowledge of the defendants in the availability of statutory grounds for assigning PJSC CB” Privatbank “to the category of insolvent, as a result of which the procedure for its nationalization was initiated, and the violation of the nationalization procedure of the bank itself, the procedure of which is regulated at the legislative level, “the press service of the court reported.

“Thus, the procedure for the nationalization of PJSC CB” Privatbank “was declared unreasonable by the court and carried out with numerous violations of the legislation in effect at that time, resulting in unlawful interference of the state with the right of shareholders of the Bank, including the plaintiff, to peacefully own a proper one property that violates both the requirements of national legislation, including the Constitution of Ukraine, and the provisions of international standards in this area, “the report said. (Ukrainian)

Hacked Emails Appear to Reveal Russia Is Backing Comedian Likely to Be Ukraine’s Next President

Comedian and actor Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a political novice, has upended Ukraine’s presidential race over the past several months by promising young voters a break from a past riddled with corruption and leaders beholden to powerful oligarchs.

But now, a tranche of hacked emails suggest that Zelenskiy may have a powerful patron of his own: the Kremlin.

On Tuesday, Ukraine’s security services revealed that they are investigating whether Zelenskiy’s campaign received financing from members of the Russian security service who are supporting the leadership of the Donetsk People’s Republic, a self-proclaimed, pro-Russian separatist proto-state in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region.

Typical propaganda: “Ukraine cannot be a homogenous ethnic nation-state”

Here’s the trash article:

The story of this election was corruption, not an embracing of any sort of multiculturalism.

This sentence, “Given its radicalism and close association with fascist ideology, Ukrainian nationalism,” is straight out of Kremlin’s playbook.

Family moments – Chair Crashing, and computer literacy

1) chair crashing

For the past two nights we had a game after dinner. I’d sit in one of our bean-bag chairs. My now-three-year-old son rushed toward me — usually starting in the adjacent room, and he’d crash into my arms, and I’d tip backwards. The bean-bag chair allowed for a more-or-less slow motion falling backwards onto the floor. My son was almost delirious with delight.

As we progressed, he started to identify the tipping point, and after crashing into me, and my starting the slow tipping, he’d clamor up as high as he could onto my chest to reach it as quickly as possible.

Sometimes he’d strike too low, and I wouldn’t tip backwards, and once I said jokingly that he hadn’t eaten enough kasha. He immediately went to the counter, where the left overs from dinner still stood, maneuvered a spoonful of kasha into his mouth, and, still chewing, crashed into me again. Of course, I feigned a devastating impact. Proud as could be, he repeated the process. Mouth full, he’d call out to his mom, asking if she saw how I fell over. My wife said she never saw him eat so much kasha. Later he drank some water to test its effects on the impact. Still later, a sip of water combines with a sip of juice.

2) computer literacy

We try to keep Danylo’s screen time to an absolute minimum. Today, he climbed onto my lap while I was writing emails. Often this turns into a problem because he can’t restrain himself from banging the keyboard to moving the mouse, and I have to decide between interrupting my work or upsetting my son. (I usually choose the latter betting that he has to learn sooner or later.) Anyway, today he showed remarkable restraint, first asking what I’m doing (“writing an email to your grandmother”), and then asking if he could watch, and then climbing into my lap.

I was impressed how long he sat there. Eventually he asked what this “plus” was, and I didn’t understand what he meant initially and asked him to point. He was referring to the “I” shape that the mouse turns into when hovering over a text field. Next he asked was the sticks were. It turns out they were scroll bars, and I showed him how they work. I also told him that this object was a mouse, and that that the little thing on the screen was a mouse pointer, and I showed them how if you moved the one, the other would also move. He said “how interesting” (“iak tsikavo!”). :-)

Ballingcat hit piece against Azov

A culture that doesn’t respect its warriors gets replaced by one that does.

Bellingcat has produced some great research which I’ve posted here before. But their latest work —

“Defend the White Race”: American Extremists Being Co-Opted by Ukraine’s Far-Right

is slander and guilt-by-association. It mixes fascism with any expression of ethnic identity or solidarity.

Sure some members of Azov have troubling views. You know what? So did a lot of the soldiers in my platoon in the US Army’s 82nd Airborne division. The guys who show up to fight are not your fucking gender studies majors and male feminists.

When I visited the Azov battalion in Shyrokyne, I was moved almost to tears by the quality of people I encountered. A film maker, an architect, the head of a Ukrainian lawfirm. An eighteen year old leader with as much poise, clarity, and maturity as I have ever seen from any military leader. It was only during my third time seeing him that he revealed me he was injured during the evacuation at Illovaisk — 17 at the time.

Azov stared down the Russian army when the fate of Mariupol and Ukraine in general was very much in doubt. And many of them died. They deserve our gratitude.

Here are Azov’s position under Russian Grad Rocket fire.

Here’s a short documentary about a Georgian fighter killed while fighting with Azov.

Remembering “Kozak” of the Azov Regiment (he was from Odesa)

The crazy story of “Swampy”, and Englishman fighting with Azov who ended up lost in the enemy camp

Saakashvili to return to Ukraine if Zelensky wins presidential election

Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili has said he is confident of Volodymyr Zelensky’s victory in the runoff presidential election in Ukraine, and wants to return to Ukraine and to restore his Ukrainian citizenship.

“In fact, a revolution has happened in Ukraine. There is no doubt that Volodymyr Zelensky will win the runoff election,” Saakashvili told the television channel Rustavi 2 in an interview.

He also commented on claims that Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoysky was behind Zelensky.

“These allegations are wrong. Perhaps, Kolomoysky stands by Zelensky. I have known Kolomoysky for a long time, and he is very favorably disposed towards me,” Saakashvili said.

Zelenski, the favorite to become Ukraine’s next president, took son’s toy!

True story:

Volodymyr Zelensky, the guy who came in first in Ukraine’s presidential election, and will likely win the run off, once took my then-two-year-old son’s toy.

We were leaving a restaurant in Kyiv, and the toy was on a chair while my wife helped our son with his jacket. Zelenski, who was there with what I assume were his own kids, picked it up.

He returned it immediately after my wife said something, and he said quietly that he thought it was for everybody, which seems plausible.

I didn’t recognize him at the time. On the way home, my wife told me he was an actor.

Ukraine’s Presidential Election Results & Commentary

There will be a runoff between Zelensky and Poroshenko, but Zelensky, a former comedian, is the heavy favorite.

TOP 10 of the candidates for the presidency in Ukraine:

– Volodymyr Zelensky – 30,23%
– Petro Poroshenko – 15,92%
– Yulia Tymoshenko – 13,40%
– Yuriy Boyko – 11,68%
– Anatoliy Hrytsenko – 6,92%
– Ihor Smeshko – 6,03%
– Oleg Lyashko – 5,48%
– Oleksandr Vilkul – 4,15%
– Ruslan Koshulynsky – 1,63%
– Yuriy Tymoshenko – 0,62%

Good news:

* Ukraine demonstrating that it can peaceful transition power is a huge accomplishment for Ukraine, and for Russia too – because a neighbor demonstrating democracy puts a lot of pressure on their autocracy.

* This is a break from the old. Zelensky is young and popular with reformers.

* Poroshenko did some thing well, but he’s a horrible crook. It’s nice that he won’t be further entrenched.

* Zelenski is pro Western.

* Zelenski inspires the youth in what seems like a good way – activism, involvement, standing up to corruption.

* It is (hopefully) a message, that Poroshenko’s corruption, lack of judicial reform, and in-action on the Maidan killings will not be tolerated.

Bad news:

* Zelenski is probably a puppet of Kolomoisky, on whose television station he built his career. Kolomoisky’s Privat Bank fraud cost Ukraine 6 Billion.

* If Kolomoisky manages evade prosecution, or worse, return to Ukraine from his self-imposed exile is Israel / Switzerland, it will be humiliating for Ukraine.

“Ukrainian eggs bring families together”

An annual Easter egg workshop at Mount Airy Museum of Regional History on Saturday provided both an opportunity for some quality time for family members and a chance to learn a new art form.

“Pysanka” is the Ukrainian word for Easter eggs decorated with traditional Ukrainian folk designs using a wax-resist method. The word pysanka comes from a word which means “to write” or “to inscribe,” as the designs are not painted on, but written or inscribed with beeswax.

Though the word is Ukrainian, pysanka is popular throughout eastern Europe. In the Orthodox church, they are brought to church to be blessed on Easter, and are thought to bring good fortune for the rest of the year.

It’s a really fun class,” said Karen Nealis, who has taught the class for the past three years. “Everybody got along. You’d have thought we were family already.

Several of the participants already were. Various family configurations: a grandmother and granddaughter, two sisters, a mother and sons, as well as a mother and her daughter’s best friend all signed up for the class.

Why Was There No Nuremberg for Communism?

After the fall of the Soviet Union, Bukovsky, a former dissident from Russia, decided to attempt the impossible: to convene a trial that would sue not the individuals as was the case in Nuremberg but rather the system of the communist regime. “For me, it seems like we have a moral responsibility to humanity,” he remarks in the documentary Le Nuremberg du communisme.

When Mikhail Gorbachev’s policies of Perestroika and Glasnost were introduced in the mid-1980s, people started to believe that the crimes of the communist regime would be punished someday and that justice would prevail. With communism on its way out, anything seemed possible. But sooner or later, that hope vanished from their minds. Historians have noted that while the Soviet regime had failed, the KGB were still active and the former nomenklatura, the communist-era elite, still retained power and influence, making it impossible to achieve justice for the victims of Soviet communism. Vladimir Bukovsky wanted to force the country to deal with its communist past and prevent the regime from gaining power again.

Born 1942, Bukovsky was a prominent activist whose fight against the Soviet regime earned him a total of twelve years in Soviet prisons, labor camps and psychiatric prison hospitals. In 1976 he was released in a swap for the imprisoned General Secretary of the Communist Party of Chile at the Zürich airport. Once free, Bukovsky felt like he had experienced a second birth. He settled in Cambridge and finished his studies in biology, but he never stopped fighting to free the Soviet Union from the grip of communism.