21.06.2018 Author: Phil Butler

Ukraine’s Delicate Situation: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

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In news from beleaguered Ukraine, the country’s Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak is begging for nice, new anti-aircraft systems from U.S. President Donald Trump. Now that the Poroshenko government has secured Javelin anti-tank weapons, the way is cleared for creating a pre-NATO bastion for the American hegemony. Also stewing in Poroshenko’s pot of privatization schemes to sell off what’s left of Ukraine’s arable land. Here’s more on the bad and worse news for Ukrainians.

I reported last week on Petro Poroshenko “loading up” with the American Javelin anti-tank systems. Not many caught the real message though. What Trump did when he sent Javelins to the Ukraine junta was to place another bargaining chip in front of Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. In the ever-constricting game of modern political and economic war being waged against Putin’s country, we see an unheard-of relentlessness to install the NATO police in every country in Eastern Europe. And if NATO cannot be shoe horned in, then the weapons NATO would use against Russia go in no matter what. In this deadly game Trump and his allies take on the aura of weapons “pushers” – stuffed business suits twisting arms and making payoffs to finish carving up the world for western prosperity. Make no mistake, Trump’s next move will be attempting to sell (or give) advanced fighters and anti-aircraft hardware to Kiev. The precedent has been set, and the argument will once again be “self-defense”.

Meanwhile, the Ukraine people will watch World Bank and IMF slight of hand as what’s left of the country’s valuable farm land is sold off to western concerns. The proclamation is belted out by the Kyiv Post:

“World Bank: Value of Ukraine’s land to triple if farmland sales permitted”

Yes, all that has to happen is for Ukraine’s lawmakers to life restrictions on land ownership. Then, according to the goodly World Bank bankers, Ukraine property owners will see the value of their lands triple! The poor landowners are now forced to rent these lands to foreign investors, but they’ll be able to sell once the Poroshenko regime lifts regulations. The reader may be surprised to discover that Ukraine’s former Agriculture Minister Oleksiy Pavlenko (2014-2016) who now currently heads the Program for Agricultural Industry Development, a non-profit, is spearheading the movement toward selling off Ukraine’s agricultural legacy. Pavlenko is also a Partner at investment fund Pharus Assets Management, and a Head of Trust Council of “Int Invest”. Pharus is more-or-less a Rothschild assisted hedge fund used to invest in the assets like the Ukraine farm property. This document links Edmond de Rothschild (Europe) and Edmond de Rothschild Asset Management (Luxembourg) to the Pharus SICAV – Avantgarde fund, which in turn leverages dozens of smaller investment funds in everything from bio-tech to video and interactive media.

Once again, I’ve leaped into the proverbial “rabbit hole” after simply trying to figure out who wants to buy up all of Ukraine’s prime farm land. Pavlenko is looped in with big money vested in companies like Nielsen, Sienna Biopharmaceuticals, and especially in structured, corporate, convertible bonds, and debt from “emerging” countries like Ukraine. So, there is a “sensitive” situation for Ukraine officials and especially NGOs where chief people are “operators” for the biggest banking players. I hope I do not need to fill in all the blanks here.

Ukraine is in one hell of a lot of trouble because it sits smack in the crosshairs of major profiteers and NATO, bordering on the mightiest country in Eurasia. Between a rock and a hard place, as the saying goes. This is where Ukraine’s powerless citizens find themselves.

Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, he’s an author of the recent bestseller “Putin’s Praetorians” and other books. He writes exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”


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