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Volodymyr Zelensky, the Donald Trump of Ukrainian Politics

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Volodymyr Zelensky, the Donald Trump of Ukrainian Politics

Written and produced by SF Team: J.Hawk, Daniel Deiss, Edwin Watson

Introduction

The parallels between the successor to Poroshenko and the current occupant of the White House are striking. Neither has had significant prior experience with national politics prior to launching a bid for the supreme executive office of their respective countries. Giving credit for Trump, he has had extensive experience in managing large businesses, Zelenskiy has none.

Both evaded compulsory military service citing health issues. Each owes his political success to their country’s population being worn down by a costly, endless war, and many-sided economic problems compounded by growing corruption and crony capitalism.

Both received support from major Jewish economic players with close ties to Israel (Igor Kolomoysky in Ukraine, Sheldon Adelson in the United States), with Trump subsequently repaying that debt of gratitude by transferring the US embassy to Jerusalem, designating it as the capital of Israel, and recognizing the annexation of the Golan Heights.

Both follow presidents who came into office as presumptive saviors of their countries, namely “Hope and Change” Barack Obama who delivered 8 years of a gradual deterioration in living standards, and “Revolution of Dignity” Petro Poroshenko who promised to transform Ukraine into a country comparable to the advanced capitalist states of Western Europe. And, last but not least, each represents a pile of political “mystery meat”. Not having a career in politics also means not having a pool of loyal and capable cadres who can descend on the government and govern in the name of their boss. This problem was clearly evident in Trump’s case. Lacking political cadres of his own, he was unable to staff the large number of positions vacated by Obama’s political appointees and instead had to rely on the suggestions of his vice president who was a consummate party insider. Worse, when Trump attempted to staff his foreign policy team with individuals advocating a less confrontational approach to Russia, such as Rex Tillerson and Mike Flynn, he found himself faced with extreme opposition from entrenched “deep state” bureaucrats. As we know, that resistance culminated in the Mueller investigation the ostensible goal of which was to investigate Russian “meddling” and Trump’s “collusion” therewith, but whose actual goal appears to have been to steer Trump’s foreign policy into greater confrontation with Russia, Iran, Syria, Venezuela and even North Korea. Now that US foreign policy is run by the likes of John Bolton (National Security Council), Mike Pompeo (State), and “Bloody Gina” Haspel (CIA)  valiantly assisted by Military Industrial Complex friend Patrick Shanahan (Defense), Robert Mueller can confidently announce “mission accomplished” and shut down his investigation. Is this what the future has in store for Zelenskiy?

Between a Rock and a Hard Place

One key difference between US and Ukrainian “deep states” is that the Ukrainian one does not lead an independent existence. Rather, it is a creature of the US and Western European political establishments who provide it with direction and guidance. While US and EU political and economic objectives concerning Ukraine may differ on a few points (the EU is mainly interested in exploiting Ukraine’s agricultural and natural resources, whereas the US sees it as a military battering ram against Russia), for all intents and purposes they are united enough to treat them as a single entity.

If the Ukrainian “deep state” is the rock,  the Ukrainian people who are plainly tired of the war, desire better relations with Russia, and a return to something resembling the normalcy of the late Yanukovych era when Ukraine was considerably more free and prosperous than it is after 5 years of post-Maidan reforms, are surely a hard place to be reckoned with. The stunning rejection of Poroshenko in the polls indicates the moral bankruptcy of the entire Maidan revolution camp, including the aforementioned Ukrainian “deep state”.

At the same time, the removal of Poroshenko will weaken the positions of the “deep state” and enhance those of the Ukrainian oligarchs who, while not exactly friends of the Ukrainian people, are nevertheless interested for their own reasons in less confrontational relations with Russia. Poroshenko, being a political veteran with a respectable power base of his own, was able to curb their ambitions and impose his will on them. Under Zelensky, the oligarchs will almost inevitably become considerably more assertive in defending their economic interests, which is liable to lead to political pressure on Zelensky to moderate Ukraine’s policies toward Russia. The early sign of this was the decision by a court in Kiev that the nationalization of Igor Kolomoysky’s Privat-Bank was unlawful, though so far the Ukraine Central Bank shows no signs of abiding by that decision.

Will Zelensky be able to deliver policies that are genuinely different from Poroshenko’s? It remains to be seen whether he feels himself powerful enough politically to replace the entire national security team, including the likes of Avakov, Turchinov, Poltorak, Klimkin, and other national security and foreign policy players who are utterly compromised by their anti-Russian policies and the crimes committed by Ukrainian military and security services in the Donbass. If they remain in office, there is little reason to believe Zelensky is anything other than a figurehead.

An Offer Ukraine Can’t Refuse

Further complicating matters is the fact that Ukraine today is far weaker and more dependent on the West than it was 5 years ago. Successive IMF loan tranches and the vastly higher indebtedness of the Ukrainian state mean that Western powers have many levers of influence on Zelensky. The United States is showing no sign of losing interest in Ukraine, likewise the EU’s policies have shown no sign of moderation. Ukraine’s continued need of loans and loan restructuring alone give Western powers a de-facto veto on Ukraine’s foreign policies. While not wholly pleased with Poroshenko’s tenure in office, where he proved to be more interested in promoting his own interests rather than the interests of his Western sponsors (a key reason why the West now appears ready to sacrifice Poroshenko), he did deliver a confrontation with Russia which validated his support by the West. Should Zelensky attempt to pick up where Yanukovych left off, there is little reason to doubt that he would be quickly faced with yet another Maidan, which would once again receive both vocal and tacit support from Western powers. Also for that reason, we should not expect any progress on the question of the recognition of Crimea. This and many other issues are no longer Ukraine’s to decide. They are part and parcel of the West-Russia political and military stand-off, and can be only resolved as part of a general “peace treaty” between the two areas. In other words, Ukraine’s future is no longer in its own hands.

Conclusion

Given all of the above, while there are a few reason for optimism, one should also curb one’s expectations. Granted, the very fact of Zelensky embarrassing Poroshenko and the rest of the Ukrainian establishment is a cause for celebration. Ukrainian politicians have been shown to be out of touch with the Ukrainian people who do not share their political priorities and do not approve of their ineptitude and corruption. But since when does the will of the people affect Kiev’s policies, given the very direct influence Western governments have on shaping Ukrainian policies, both in the domestic and international realms? Moscow’s rather belated decision to impose a ban on petroleum exports to Ukraine, which is to enter force on June 1, 2019, suggests it is not expecting anything but a tough transition period to the new regime in Ukraine.

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  • Dr. Ronald Cutburth

    Excellent summary narrative about the varied prospects for Ukraine. Although the criminal US Zionist government will still support the Ukraine confrontation with Russia, we see that Russia has set up wise plans for dealing with both Ukraine and the US Zionists.

  • El Mashi

    The Zionist State is colonizing the Ukraine with its undesirables namely the Ultra Orthodox who neither work of enter the military. Many who have no roots in Russia. There is no place on earth where the natives hate Jews more than Israel and the Ukraine.

    • John Hanson

      I can’t tell the moron Ukrop hate them, they keep electing one right after another.

  • occupybacon

    Except that when Trump tweets you can expect something bigger to happen

    • Promitheas Apollonious

      you mean a bigger fart than the ukranians. because so far beside some ass kissing to israels interest he have yet to achieve any of the farts he let go on twitter.

      • occupybacon

        While it’s true what you say about Israel, most of his tweets are about the US economy which is growing steady https://news.gallup.com/poll/249164/americans-feel-generally-positive-own-finances.aspx

        • Promitheas Apollonious

          if you call having a debt that you can never pay economy then you have not been learning correctly the meaning of real economy. Unfortunately for the americans are running out of nations they can steal from them every thing they have. americans dont have economy they have debt. I give them less than ten years as things progress now.

          • occupybacon

            Funny how a dude with a Greek name knows a lot about other nations “debt” :) Only 1/3 of the US debt is external, 2/3 is internal debt which is their way to count printing money and transactions between governmental institutions. The 1/3 is 21 x Greece debt before the bail while the american economy is 105 x Greece economy. That’s exactly 5 times, besides that US can get a bail more easy than Greece.

          • Promitheas Apollonious

            keep dreaming living in denial of fact is just show what a single cell you are and the extent of your ignorance in what you say.

          • occupybacon

            You are obsessed by the idea that US economy will collapse, Soviets were chanting this song like they were toppling the walls of Jericho

          • Promitheas Apollonious

            your assumptions of what I am obsessed is just that assumptions or make believe in your mind in order to have an argument. There is not one single economy based on make believe monopoly money and debt ever survived in all history. So what usa economy are you exactly referring to?

            The one that if the chinese did not take over they thrown away back to you as none profitable? The only economy that does good in usa is your war industry that keeps keep afloat, thanks to you the tax slave. It is more than 5-6 years now american interest is not accepted in Switzerland and in most asian countries and eurasia. wake up and smell the roses and the decision to kill the $ goes hand in hand with the new coin they preparing for you to use in bankrupt america. You lost two wars you could not afford to lose any of them and survive.

            soon you realize reality and what you like to believe is are not one and the same thing.

          • Daily Beatings

            Actual the internal debts are unfunded liabilities, which is worst as default would cause a massive reduction in services grinding the US consumption economy to a halt. At least with external debt you can tell you creditors to pound sand.

          • occupybacon

            I’m not a FED fan, but they can print more money for that too.

          • Daily Beatings

            There’s a word for that. It’s called inflation. You can’t materialize an endless supply of money without it.

          • occupybacon

            The crisis will happen sooner or later but the hardest hit won’t be felt by the US, they will survive and with a bit of luck, who knows? maybe they will wake up to reality.

          • John Hanson

            So far the American fake economy is working better than everyones real economy.

            This crap won’t end until every Nation refuses to accept USD for payment.

          • Promitheas Apollonious

            does it?

        • John Hanson

          The dual citizen bankers float that with their stream of self created money from their Central Bank.

    • John Hanson

      When it is about the invasion across the border all the tweets do is stay meaningless tweets.

  • CallMeBlu

    THE DONALD TRUMP OF UKRAINIAN POLITICS

    Is he going to suck off Israel too?

    • Sinbad2

      He’s a suckee.

  • Ani Ni

    The quote below has no factual basis. The economy had considerably improved from the banking crisis to the election of Trump. Living standards actually went up during Obama’s time in office. Obama had many faults but the economy and living standards did gradually improve during his 2 terms.
    Both follow presidents who came into office as presumptive saviors of their countries, namely “Hope and Change” Barack Obama who delivered 8 years of a gradual deterioration in living standard.

    • cechas vodobenikov

      “amerikans r blind from birth”. Sacvan Bercovitch
      real wages declined during obama—unemployment increased—(63% of able bodied americans between 18-65 r included in official stats—obama care caused many small enterprises to reduce hours to 28 per week in order to avoid requirements to provide benefits–poverty increased, wealth and income disparities increased (per Allianz 2015 USA had the greatest disparities of all nations examined)…conditions for minorities declined during obama (black agenda report)…apparently u r brainwashed by the US MSM

  • cechas vodobenikov

    the decline of Ukraine has been precipitous and sad

  • Tudor Miron

    If someone thinks that such articles will help to rise the status of this clown they should try harder. This puppet is of much lower grade than Trump. Nothing more than a talking head. Zero.

    • S Melanson

      Agreed. The only question is whether the oligarchs will exert any real influence or if it will be business as usual with no change. If the oligarchs do exert influence, the only difference would be the oligarchs will have a share of the spoils as the wholesale looting of Ukraine continues.

  • verner

    somehow I think that zelensky is more fun that the tedious and utterly boring donny the dunce.

  • VOLODYMYR ZELENSKY, THE DONALD TRUMP OF UKRAINIAN POLITICS

    So Zelensky is a zionist puppet too…?

  • Enver Hoxha

    LOL your vid says its obama’s fault that living standards are going down. How about the real reasons, the crash, the constant growth requirement for the economy, etc.

  • John Hanson

    Why say he is useless and a liar before he even has a chance to start?

  • Xio

    Just another clown, another bad actor… directors & production are the same.