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    What will L.Kuchma's fate be under the Yushchenko presidency?
    Same as Ceausescu
    Exile in Russia or elsewhere
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    BRAMA News and Community Press

    BRAMA, August 3, 2009, 9:00 AM ET

    Modified 9/11/09
    See comment dated 8/29/09
    See comment dated 9/3/09

    Prime Minister Tymoshenko is denounced by the Ukrainian National Association Press in the USA
    By Boris Danik

    What started as a failed attempt in Ukraine during May and June to form a coalition between the Tymoshenko Block and Viktor Yanukovych's Party of Regions has turned into a torrent of allegations from parts of diaspora press against Prime Minister Tymoshenko.

     ·  Ukrainian National Association
     ·  Svoboda
    Wiki logo
     ·  Yulia Tymoshenko
     ·  Viktor Yanukovych
     ·  Oleh Tyahnybok
     ·  Arseniy Yatsenyuk
     ·  Viktor Yushchenko

    The two blocks in Ukraine each knew that a coalition between them could not endure, but neither side thought it could afford not to try. The main reason for the perceived necessity to have a go at it was the popular expectation (largely wrong) that the economy might get back on track, if only the politicians could set aside their squabbles.

    Multitudes took it seriously. The working class, desperate for jobs, was paying attention and saw it in a positive light.

    Yulia Tymoshenko gambled because, as Prime Minister, she is under an enormous pressure on the economy front. Viktor Yanukovych, ahead in the polls, did not really need that gambit. But each camp felt it could play up popular overtures to its own advantage, and then bail out with righteous gestures.

    Mr. Yanukovych parachuted first, before an agreement could be concluded, and left Yulia Andrievna [Tymoshenko] wondering if she played her card cleverly.

    Some disillusionment with the Prime Minister among national democrats has shown recent gains in the polls for Arseniy Yatseniuk – at which point he predictably started to lose some of his white knight feathers by talking weighty matters such as improving relations with Russia.

    But nowhere was Ms. Tymoshenko painted so darkly as in some U.S. diaspora publications. She was never in the diaspora's good graces despite her Orange credentials. But this time Tymoshenko was savaged in the two papers published by the Ukrainian National Association.

    The editorial in Svoboda, July 24, 2009, is of the opinion that "the road to anti-Ukrainian perspective will be open when either Tymoshenko or Yanukovych becomes president." And: "They both pave the shorter way for Moscow to swallow Ukraine."

    Now, I might have written something of the sort after tying one on. However, to print this in a supposedly lucid publication of the UNA is irresponsible. It is about a woman of exceptional courage and leadership ability, who put her life on the line as the leader on the ground (not in the armchair like some of the others) at Maidan. She did not do it "to pave way for Moscow." One need not have an inside track to understand this.

    I don't question the motivation of Svoboda editors, but I question their judgment. How does one gin up the following: "Tymoshenko demonstrates her hostility to NATO by superficially loyal verbal construction." Wow!

    One may recall that Ms. Tymoshenko actually signed on NATO membership application in 2008 (as did Mr. Yushchenko), only to have it nixed by the Europeans, who are in no mood to stick out their neck – in addition to being cajoled by the US into the Afghanistan mess.

    NATO has become de facto, irrelevant for Ukraine, even though the diaspora poobas are unable to swallow it. Reliance on foreign troops is part of the diaspora's own story, all the way from Ukraine to post-war DP camps in Western Europe.

    That is not the way any Ukrainian government must deal today with thorny issues. Diaspora's solicitude is not on the same page – as long as it centers on folklore and on retooling Viktor Yushchenko's image.

    One thing is almost certain: if many national democrats and nationalists play games with Yatseniuk or Tiahnybok to the extent of undermining the Tymoshenko bid for presidency, they will help elect Mr. Yanukovych.

    Dr. Boris Danik
    North Caldwell, NJ

    August 29, 2009

    Editor, The Ukrainian Weekly

    In her "Letter from the Editor" (The Ukrainian Weekly, August 23, 2009, p.7) the editor-in-chief of Svoboda and The Ukrainian Weekly takes issue with my op-ed commentary posted on Brama Press, August 3, 2009 ("Prime Minister Tymoshenko is denounced by the Ukrainian National Association Press in the USA").

    In particular, she asserts that the words which I quoted from the Svoboda editorial of July 24th are not the words of Svoboda editors, but of someone else (someone from Kyiv) (see Svoboda, p.6).

    It does not work. It is very clear that the lines which I quoted are words of Svoboda editors. In the text, these words are not attributed to any third party.

    While calling my commentary misleading, Svoboda's editor-in-chief is now pathetically distancing herself and her staff from the key lines in said editorial — without admitting that she is backing off. This is innovative.

    She writes, "What the op-ed writer (Boris Danik) presents as Svoboda's position is not the newspaper's position at all."

    Amazing. The "position has mutated with lightning speed, and without blinking an eye. But Svoboda's editorial of July 24 is still there, and anyone can see it.

    Boris Danik
    North Caldwell, NJ

    September 3, 2009

    Follow-up commentary by Dr. Boris Danik:

    An editor's disclaimer of his/her opinion that was previously stated in own editorial is almost unprecedented in any media.

    To top it off, the disclaimer by the editor-in-chief (in her letter in The Ukrainian Weekly, August 23rd) is coupled with writing that, by quoting the pertinent lines from the Svoboda editorial of July 24th, Boris Danik was "…villifying the UNA…".

    So much for chutzpah.

    The Ukrainian Weekly, the other publication of the UNA, is not short of opinion about Prime MInister Tymoshenko. It its editorial of June 14 we find, (see The Ukrainian Weekly, p.6) "…The attempt by Prime MInister Yulia Tymoshenko and Viktor Yanukovych to form the so-called Unity and Rebirth Coalition resembled two mafia lords hatching the heist of their lifetimes…".

    And then, "…These swindlers — to use President Viktor Yushchenko's words — who gained much of their fortunes through illegal means, couldn't seal the deal largely because they didn't even trust each other…".

    It is not clear what is today's status of The Ukrainian Weekly's June 14 "position." In any event, I have verified that these passages satisfy the dictionary definition of denouncing someone.

    Boris Danik,
    North Caldwell, NJ

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