Category Archives: News & Views

Ukrainian Orthodox Christians Formally Break From Russia

ISTANBUL — The spiritual leader of Eastern Orthodox Christians worldwide recognized the independence of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine in a four-hour ceremony in Istanbul on Sunday, formalizing a split with the Russian church to which it had been tied for more than four centuries.

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the spiritual leader, handed a Tomos of Autocephaly containing a decree of independence to the newly appointed Metropolitan Epiphanius of Ukraine, cleaving millions of Ukrainians from the Russian Orthodox Church.

The independence effort outraged political and religious leaders in Russia. But for President Petro O. Poroshenko of Ukraine, who stood before an elevated throne throughout the ceremony in Istanbul, the occasion was an affirmation of independence from Russian influence in his embattled country and a boost ahead of elections in March.

“Tomos for us is actually another act of proclaiming Ukraine’s independence,” Mr. Poroshenko said in an address. “For Ukrainians, our own Church is a guarantee of our spiritual freedom. This is the key to social harmony.”

Recognition of the church’s autonomy will resolve a problem for the many Ukrainians who had broken with Moscow and been declared noncanonical, he added.

The Ukrainian church had been under Moscow’s jurisdiction since 1686, when, under pressure from Russia, it abandoned allegiance to Constantinople, the historical seat of the Eastern Orthodox Church now known as Istanbul.

Kolomoisky PrivatBank update

Judge orders unfreezing of Kolomoisky’s assets in PrivatBank case

Lawyers for two of Ukraine’s wealthiest oligarchs, Ihor Kolomoisky and Gennadiy Boholyubov, have said the London High Court has ordered the freeing of their clients’ assets as the country’s largest bank, PrivatBank, suffers setbacks to attempts to recover billions of dollars it claims were stolen by the two businessmen.

The two owned PrivatBank before the Ukrainian government nationalized it in 2016 and was forced to inject $5.5 billion of taxpayers’ money to replace missing cash. In 2017, PrivatBank succeeded in getting the assets frozen worldwide by proceedings in the London High Court intended as a prelude to a full trial for the oligarchs.

The legal proceedings concerned only whether English courts were the correct jurisdiction for any eventual trial and were not to decide on the guilt or innocence of the two Ukrainian oligarchs. Kolomoisky and Boholyubov deny that billions of dollars of PrivatBank’s money went missing when they were in charge. But they admit to causing $248 million losses to the bank.

Ukraine sues oligarch Kolomoisky again, now in his domicile of Switzerland

The rigmarole continues for Ukraine’s attempts to recover over $5 billion siphoned off from the country’s largest bank, PrivatBank, from its former owners.

The National Bank of Ukraine filed a lawsuit to a Geneva tribunal claiming Hr 6.64 billion ($238 million) from Ukrainian oligarch and Swiss resident Ihor Kolomoisky, according to a statement released on Dec.19.

The central bank claimed that Kolomoisky, one of ex-owners of PrivatBank, had served as a guarantor in five refinancing loan agreements before the bank was nationalized in December 2016.

“Since all efforts of the NBU to settle all issues regarding the discharge of Ihor Kolomoisky’s debt under refinancing loans out-of-court failed, the regulator regrettably was forced to file a claim,” the statement read, citing the head of litigation at the NBU legal department, Viktor Hryhorchuk.

He noted that, in early June, the NBU filed 147 claims to the Ukrainian courts against Kolomoisky and 32 companies affiliated with him which had provided collateral for loans.

As of Dec. 18, commercial courts have ruled in 20 cases in favor of the NBU, allowing the regulator to claim the property worth Hr 1.2 billion as debt repayment.

The new lawsuit in Geneva follows PrivatBank’s ongoing legal dispute against Kolomoisky and his business partner Gennadiy Boholyubov in London in a bid to recover part of an estimated $5.5 billion stolen from the bank. Having nationalized the bank two years ago, the Ukrainian government had to fill in the gap with public funds.

Initially, PrivatBank succeeded to have the two oligarchs’ assets frozen — in total, $2.6 billion worldwide. However, in late November an English judge ruled that London was not the right jurisdiction for further proceedings. PrivatBank said it would appeal.

Ukraine’s economy sees 8th most in remittances of all countries, receiving $16.5B

The World Bank estimated that remittances to developing countries were $528 billion in 2018. Half of these remittances were received by six countries: India received $80 billion, China ($67 billion), Mexico and the Philippines ($34 billion each), and Egypt ($26 billion) and Nigeria ($25 billion). Remittances were the largest share of GDP in ex-USSR countries and island states, led by Kyrgyz Republic, where remittances were 36 percent of GDP, and Tonga, 35 percent.

If I understand correctly, these are monies sent into each country from people outside the country. They are classified as gives and usually come from relatives working internationally.

Think of all those bank fees!!! It’s a great use case for crypto.

The propaganda continues: “MH17 Turnabout: Ukraine’s Guilt Now Proven”

Finally, a clear and convincing – and unrefuted – case can now be presented to the public, as to precisely whom the guilty party was, that downed the MH17 Malaysian airliner over Ukraine on 17 July 2014, and why it was done. The complete case, which will be fully documented here, displays unequivocally who needed the MH17 murders (of 298 persons) to be perpetrated. This mass-murder was done for one leader’s very pressing obsession. For him, it simply had to be done, and done at that precise time.

The article is long and confusing, and ignores much hard evidence, deep investigation, and even claims made earlier by Russian officials — most notably that they’d SHOT DOWN A PLANE. Their story only changed after they discovered it was a civilian airliner. In the past the Russian propagandists also published a supposed satellite photo of a Ukrainian fighter shooting at MH-1y, even capturing the missile in flight.

fake russian satellite image of mh-17

Please see these links about MH-17:

Dutch investigation releases MH-17 Report
Great MH-17 Account in The Daily Beast
The Latest Libertarian Shillery for Russia
Russian Mercenary Claims to Clothe Family in MH17 Victim Clothes
MH17 Stories / Links

and these links about Zero Hedge being a Russian Asset:

Is Zero Hedge a Putin Asset?
Zero Hedge reporting more BS — Blackwater in Ukraine
Zero Hedge Got it Wrong

Great Overview of Ukrainian Gas Industry and Relations with Russia

1) Losing a lot of gas traffic might be fine for Ukraine. It may help Ukraine reduce corruption by producing fewer energy oligarchs and develop a real economy – IT and agriculture.

2) Regarding Russian hostility, I think more important than any gas transit deal is that the Russian creation myth relies on Ukrainian history. Ukraine’s Independence is an identity crisis for the Russians.

Research: 13% of Russians use cryptocurrencies as an alternative for online purchases

A recent poll that was conducted on 924 residents of the Russian Federation showed the following:

13 percent of Russians use cryptocurrencies to pay for items they buy on the internet.
18 percent of respondents said they are using peer-to-peer mobile payment systems
38 percent are regularly making payments through contactless applications such as Paypass, Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay
48 percent have a mobile bank account
76 percent have stated they use electronic wallets to buy goods and services

Now we know: Democratic Operatives did fake “Russian Bots” to discredit Republicans

Democrats CAUGHT In Russian Bot “False Flag” Smear Campaign in the Alabama special election. A group called new Knowledge is claiming that the admitted false flag against Republicans was just a small experiment. They were responsible for a mas amount of presumably Russian bots following the Roy Moore campaign on Twitter to trick people into thinking the Russians were propping him up. National media fell for the ruse and the narrative went viral. Left wing writers mocked the Moore campaign for suggesting this was a democratic ploy to smear him. We now know it was. They can claim it was an experiment but this reeks of democratic operatives serving engaging in a political con job and may have actually swung an election.

story here:

I had another discussion about the Russia-Trump thing today

Look, the media has lost all its credibility. They will say anything and everything to discredit Trump. It’s comical:

video summary:

18 Most Mortifying Media Moments of 2018

My position was and remains:

The Clintons seem to have more troubling relationships with Russian than Trump. (Bill’s half million dollar speech, the Uranium One deal, Podesta owning stock in a Russian energy company.)

Trump’s things does not really seem to exist.

Trump gave Ukraine real material support which Obama did not.

Ukraine refuses to sign UN Migration Pact

The press service of Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that Ukraine refused to sign the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM).

The decision was made because of the annexation of the Crimea by Russia and the fighting in the Donbas, as a result of which there are 1.5 million internally displaced persons in Ukraine.

“The Ukrainian side is making every effort to ensure the rights and meet the needs of internally displaced persons, but there is still a lot of work ahead that requires considerable material and financial resources. Having in mind the above, Ukraine will consider joining the World Pact for safe, orderly and legal migration at another stage under favorable conditions, “- said the Foreign Ministry.