AUR#703 June 1 Hospital Of Hope To Be Built; Kateryna Yushchenko, Worldwide Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children; Ukraine-U.S. Business Council & Amb Taylor

                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
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                HOSPITAL OF HOPE – IN KYIV
       Kateryna Yushchenko, Worldwide Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children
                                                  [article one]
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor  
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1.                             HOSPITAL OF HOPE – IN KYIV
     Kateryna Yushchenko, Worldwide Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children
By Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #703, Article 1
Ukraine-U.S. Business Council
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #703, Article 2
Washington, D.C., Thursday, June 1, 2006

OP-ED: By Walter Parchomenko in the Kyiv Post
Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 18 2006


                                 THREAT TO SOVEREIGNTY
Associated Press (AP), Kiev, Ukraine, Tue, May 30, 2006


                                  NOT BELONG TO UKRAINE 
TV 5 Kanal, Kiev, in Ukrainian 1800 gmt 30 May 06
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Tue, May 30, 2006

OP-ED: Tammy Lynch in the Kyiv Post, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, Jun 01 2006

Agence France Presse (AFP), Kiev, Ukraine, Wed May 31, 2006

          Legal trade dried up as Ukraine cracked down on its border with
      Transnistria, a separatist region of Moldova, but the smuggling persists.
By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times
New York, New York, Sunday, May 28, 2006

             Shops on the airport road outside Odessa are shipping containers

By Steven Lee Myers, Foreign Desk
The New York Times, New York, NY, Thu, 18 May 2006

10.                      “HOW TO WIN AN INFORMATION WAR”
           Ukraine losing information war against Russia says media official
By Bohdan Chervak, Head Information Policy Department
State Committee for TV and Radio
Ukrayinska Pravda web site, Kiev, in Ukrainian 29 May 06
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Wed, May 31, 2006


                         OF DNIPROPETROVSK CHALLENGED 
Associated Press (AP)Kiev, Ukraine, Friday, May 26, 2006 12:16 p.m.


                                     PROBLEM LAWFULLY
Itar-Tass, Moscow, Russia, Wed, May 31, 2006

     Six Grassroots Environmentalists Win $125,000 Goldman Environmental Prize
                World’s largest prize honoring grassroots environmentalists.
Goldman Environmental Prize, San Francisco, California, April 24, 2006

                   Russia Expert Returns from Moscow to Washington
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP)
Washington, D.C., Monday, April 17, 2006

                                  Kyiv, Ukraine: June 1 – 4, 2006
Basil P. Tarasko, District Administrator of the Little Leagues in Ukraine
Scout – San Diego Padres Major League Baseball Club
Coach – National Baseball Teams of Ukraine
Trip #42 to Ukraine, May 25 – June 11, 2006
Bayside, New York, May 2006

            Anthology introduces new voices and a century of hidden stories
BOOK LAUNCH: Kobzar’s Children, A Century of Untold Ukrainian Stories
Vancouver, BC and Richmond, BC, Canada, Fri & Sat, June 2 & 3, 2006

17.                           PAVED WITH GOOD INTENTIONS
                 A crusading economist argues that utopian foreign aid plans
                                     do little to ease world poverty.
Book Reviewed by David Ignatius, The Washington Post

Washington, D.C., Sunday, May 21, 2006; Page Book World 06
.                 HOSPITAL OF HOPE – IN KYIV
      Kateryna Yushchenko, Worldwide Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children

By Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #703, Article 1
Washington, D.C., Thursday, June 1, 2006

PHILADELPHIA – The first lady of Ukraine, Mrs. Kateryna Yushchenko
continued her week long trip to the United States with a dinner in
Philadelphia Tuesday evening hosted by the World Affairs Council of
Philadelphia with assistance from The Ukrainian Human Rights Committee.
The first lady participated in a formal question and answer session during
the dinner.

On Wednesday she met with a large number of heath care companies and
professionals in Philadelphia under a program organized by the Ukrainian
Federation of America.

On Monday and Tuesday the first lady was in Washington with a series
of dinners and meetings including one with the first lady of the United
States Laura Bush. After Philadelphia her next stop is California and
then back to Kyiv over the weekend.


Kateryna Yushchenko in her private meetings and public appearances
uses every opportunity to tell about the Orange Revolution, the progress
Ukraine has made as an independent, democratic country located in the
heart of Europe.  She talks about her husband Viktor Yushchenko and
his work to build a Ukraine with a market economy, a modern judicial
system and a country with Euro-Atlantic integration as a major goal.

The first lady is a very effective ambassador for Ukraine and is well
received wherever she goes.  She was raised near Chicago and worked
many years supporting independence for Ukraine. She went to Ukraine
in the early 1990’s to work in and assist the country of her families
heritage on its path to political and economic freedom.

                          Better Health for Ukraine’s Children

The main purpose of Kateryna Yushchenko’s recent trips to several
European countries and the United States is to tell the world about the
very critical healthcare needs of the children of Ukraine.  Her goal while
she is the first lady of Ukraine is to lead a major effort to improve the
health and healthcare of Ukraine’s children.

She has truly become a ‘Worldwide Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children.’
Kateryna never misses an opportunity to tell about the work and goals of
her foundation, the “Ukraine 3000 Foundation.” She especially explains
the work program she has developed under the goal, ‘Better Health
for Ukraine’s Children. She is never hesitant to ask individuals, companies,
foundations, hospitals and governments to support the critical work in


The Ukraine 3000 Foundation initiated its “Hospital to Hospital” Program
in 2005 under Kateryna’s leadership.  This program seeks international
and domestic partners for 25 children’s hospitals in Ukraine in order to
provide them with training, equipment, medicines, and improved

The 25 hospitals were chosen by competition and include one hospital
in each of Ukraine’s oblasts [states] as well as the Institute of Oncology
Children’s Department and the Child Onco-Hematology Center in Kyiv,
Kateryna told the audience in Philadelphia.

Dr. John Wood, President of the International Medical Education
Foundation of Waco, Texas, and a long-time Baptist minister is assisting
in identifying partner hospitals in the United States and in providing
hospital professionals in Ukraine with opportunities for training in the US.
Dr. Wood was in Washington and Philadelphia and attended some of
the meetings.

Together with the Foundation’s domestic and international partners the
“Hospital to Hospital” Program has provided more than $7 million in
assistance to Ukrainian hospitals during the past year.


Kateryna Yushchenko told Laura Bush at the White House on Tuesday
morning and the people of Philadelphia on Tuesday evening that the Ukraine
3000 Foundation’s “Hospital to Hospital” Program has a major, grand
goal.  That goal is to build a new, state of the art Children’s Hospital in
Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital city – a HOSPITAL OF HOPE and open the
facility in 2009.

The new 300-bed modern facility will offer nearly every pediatric specialty
and provide a full spectrum of healthcare services, ranging from prevention
programs to the most advanced medical treatments, according to Dr.
Vira Pavlyuk, MD, PhD, who serves as the Director of the Partnership
Project, “Hospital to Hospital.”  Dr. Pavlyuk is with the first lady on her
trip to the United States.

The hospital will also be a cutting edge research that will develop and
implement innovative cures for the most difficult diseases.  The new
hospital is reported to cost a minimum of $150 million to build and
could require a capital outlay of up to $300 million by the time is
it complete furnished.


The mission of the new Children’s Hospital in Kyiv, according to
Kateryna Yushchenko, who serves as Chairperson of the Supervisory
Council of the International Fund “Ukraine 3000”, is:

[1] To be a center of excellence and the best referral center for
critically ill children

[2] To provide personalized, high-quality, family centered medical and
surgical care to Ukrainian newborns, children and adolescents in a
child-friendly environment.

[3] To bring hope to small patients and their families living with difficult
health disorders and to protect the health and well-being of children.


The new children’s hospital’s main inpatient departments, outpatient
clinics and programs will include: Adolescent Medicine; Anesthesia & Pain
Control Service; Behavioral & Development Pediatrics; Bioethics & Social
Service Policy Program; Bone Marrow Transplant; Clinical Genetics &
Cytogenetics; Clinical Pharmacology; Cord Blood Banking; Dermatology;
Dietetics and Nutrition; Ear, Nose, Throat; Speech & Language Therapy;
Endrocrinology; Gastroenterology; General & Neonatal Surgery; General
Pediatrics; Hematology & Onco-Hematology; Metabolic Medicine &
Molecular Genetics; Neonatal Intensive Care Unit; Nephrology; Neurology
& Neurosurgery; Oncology; Pediatric Accident & Emergency Department;
Pediatric Intensive Care Unit; Perinatal Center; Physiotherapy; Plastic
Surgery; Prenatal Testing Program; Psychology, Psychosocial & Family
Services; Radiology; Rehabilitation Programs; Telehealth Programs;
Transport; and a Volunteer Program according to the booklet, “This
Ukrainian Child Can Hope For A Normal Life” published by the
Ukraine 3000 Foundation, being distributed by the Foundation staff
who are with the first lady in the United States.

                                    CANCER CENTER

The Hospital will be the most comprehensive children’s Cancer Center
in Ukraine.  A tragic consequence of the 1986 Chornobyl nuclear
disaster is a growing incidence of oncological diseases in the affected
population.  Each year more and more Ukrainian children are stricken
with cancer according to Dr. Vira Pavlyuk.


The date, Ukraine is unable to treat its many children who desperately
need bone marrow transplants, organ transplants and other types of
serious medical care.  A small number are sent for treatment abroad
at very high cost while the vast majority are still on waiting lists.  This
money could be better spent treating children locally, but only with the
necessary facilities and equipment.

                     PRENATAL AND NEONATAL CARE

Another priority of the new hospital will be prenatal and neonatal care.
The Foundation believes that by promoting healthy pregnancies and
births, the number of children who need medical care in the future can
be decreased.

The Medical Center will be open on a cost-free basis for those Ukrainian
infants, children, adolescents and mothers who need specialized medical


THE CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL IN KYIV will be located in Feofania
Park Medical Center, a facility that since Soviet times was exclusively
reserved for Communist Party and government officials.  This facility
will now be opened for the needs of the general population.


The Ambassador for Ukraine’s Children, Kateryna Yushchenko, said a
Children’s Hospital Foundation (CHF) will be created to manage
construction and fund raising for the project.  The CHF Supervisory
Board will provide project oversight and implement a major plan of action
that will achieve the main goals and objectives needed for the development
of the new hospital.

[1] Raise funds from domestic and foreign legal entities and private
persons; form a plan of fundraising measures in Ukraine and abroad.

[2] Perform all the organizational work with respect to investment of
the raised funds in the project of construction and further equipping of
the Children’s Hospital in Kyiv.

[3] Organize an international competition for a general contractor with
experience in building medical facilities.

[4] Provide effective and transparent management of financial flows and
regularly report to the providers of charity funds on their end use.

[5] Control the quality of the construction and works being performed.

[6] Conduct consultations, formulate additional requirements to tender
conditions with respect to the attraction of sub-contract organizations,
approve results of tenders and contests on performance of works and
provisions of services.


The new booklet developed by the Ukraine 3000 Foundation passed out
at the events attended by Mrs. Yushchenko outline how donations
can be made to support the work for children. One can support the
implementation of this important project by making a donation to the
International Charitable Fund “Ukraine 3000” the following ways:


Beneficiary:  International Charitable Fund “Ukraine 3000”
Code EDRPOU: 26167513
ACC: 26006301003457 at “Transbank”, MFO 300089
Details of Payment: Donation


Beneficiary:  International Charitable Fund “Ukraine 3000”,
Account Number 26006301003457
Beneficiary’s Bank: Transbank, Kyiv, Ukraine,
Correspondent Bank:  Deutsche Bank AG, Frankfurt/Main, Germany
S.W.I.F.T. Code: DEUTDEFF, Account Number 9470410
Details of payment:  Donation


Beneficiary:  International Charitable Fund “Ukraine 3000”,
Account Number 26006301003457
Beneficiary’s Bank: Transbank, Kyiv, Ukraine,
Correspondent Bank: Deutsche Bank Trust Company, NY, NY, USA
S.W.I.F.T. Code: BKTRUS33, Account Number 04-415-633
Details of payment: Donation

The first lady also told the people of Philadelphia that a new foundation
is presently being created in the United States that will be responsible for
fund-raising in the US.  This type of legal structure will make is much
easier for U.S. citizens to support the “Hospital to Hospital” program.
A new website in English will also be launched soon.      
                                       THE FIRST LADY
Ukraine’s first lady, Kateryna Yushchenko, Worldwide Ambassador for
Ukraine’s Children, said, “Our country has lived through difficult times
of ruin and despair.  Now is the time to restore it spiritually and physically. 
It is time when an individual should look around and help those who need
Through our cooperation with Ukrainian and international organizations,
governments, businesses and individuals in Ukraine and around the world,
we encourage the development of a tradition of people helping people, and
through that, a revival of the old Ukrainian culture of charity. Together we
can do more. The time for better healthcare for Ukraine’s children is now.”
                         TOGETHER WE CAN DO MORE
Kateryna Yushchenko, Chairperson of the Supervisory Council
International Fund “Ukraine 3000”
22A, Borychiv Tik str., 04070 Kyiv, Ukraine
Tel: 380 44 467 6789, Fax: 380 44 467 6783
Vira Pavlyuk, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor
Director of Partnership Project, “Hospital to Hospital”
International Fund “Ukraine 3000”
22A, Borychiv Tik str., 04070 Kyiv, Ukraine
Tel: 380 44 467 6796, Fax: 380 44 467 6783
Maryna Antonova, Head of the Press Office
International Fund “Ukraine 3000”
22A, Borychiv Tik str., Kyiv 04070, Ukraine
Tel: 380 44 467 6781; Fax 380 467 6783, Mob 8 050 143 3853
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

Ukraine-U.S. Business Council
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #703, Article 2
Washington, D.C., Thursday, June 1, 2006

WASHINGTON – Members of the Ukraine-United States Business Council

gathered Wednesday, May 31, at the University Club in Washington, D.C. to
brief William B. Taylor, Jr. about Ukraine’s business conditions and prospects.

 Mr. Taylor was confirmed by the Senate on Friday, May 26, expects to be
sworn in as U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine on June 5th and depart for Kyiv by
the end of the week.

Council members, who represent a large percentage of U.S. trade and
investment in Ukraine, told the ambassador about the fast growth of the
Ukrainian market in consumer goods and services.

Others spoke of the huge potential they saw in agriculture, food processing,
telecommunications, and energy, among other sectors. Several spoke of “the
good story” they have to tell about their company’s experience in Ukraine.

Council President, Dr. Susanne Lotarski, introduced Mr. Taylor as someone
who knew Ukraine well and had helped design and implement American
assistance programs for Ukraine. Many Council members, she said, had seen
and benefited from his strong advocacy for economic, commercial and legal
reforms to develop the private sector and attract foreign investment.

Ambassador Taylor said that he felt the relationship between Ukraine and the
United States has never been better than it is now.  He asked the attendees
about what business climate issues deserved his focus once he arrived in

Members agreed that stronger rule of law and reduction of corruption topped
the list of business needs.  While progress in intellectual property rights
protection and the system of VAT refunds was noted, Council members

saw a need for further improvements in both.

Members’ hopes for Ukraine include adoption of a coherent energy plan

and market-drive agricultural policy that includes private land ownership,
government organizational reform, and transparent privatization and
regulatory processes.

Turning to U.S. programs, members of the Ukraine-United States Business
Council expressed their hope that the new ambassador would urge the
Ukrainian government to resolve quickly the U.S. Overseas Private Investment
Corporation’s (OPIC) outstanding insurance expropriation claim against

Resolution of this issue would reopen OPIC programs and could release,

over the next few years, up to $500 million in OPIC-backed private equity
investment programs to support Ukrainian businesses.  The Ambassador said
he had recently received a briefing from the President of OPIC on the
outstanding issue and this would be one of his top priorities as he began
his work in Kyiv.

Realistic risk ratings and more competitive export credit financing by the
U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im) also ranked high for U.S. industrial and
agricultural machinery exporters.

President Lotarski pointed out that the U.S. air carrier Delta will make its
first non-stop flight from New York City to Kyiv, using a Boeing jet, on
Thursday, June 1, with the inaugural landing in Kyiv early Friday afternoon.
Business and travel between the two countries is expected to continue to
expand rapidly.  Ukraine no longer requires U.S. citizens to have visas for
short business and tourism trips, Lotarski said.

In conclusion, Ambassador Taylor invited members of the Council to visit him
at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv and to keep him informed about the development
of the private business climate in Ukraine.  They in turn offered him their
support and wished him a successful tour in Ukraine.

Council members participating in the meeting included representatives of
American Life Insurance Company, Archer Daniel Midland Company, Boeing,
Cargill, Cape Point Capital, Case New Holland, the Eurasia Foundation,
Procter & Gamble, SALANS, SigmaBleyzer, and Westinghouse.  Guests from
DutkoWorldwide, Jonathan Partners, The PBN Company, PFC Energy, United
Technologies, the Departments of State and Commerce also attended.
For further information, contact:  Dr. Susanne S. Lotarski, President,
Ukraine-United States Business Council, P.O. Box 42067, Washington, DC
20015; telephone/fax: (301) 654-9359;

E. Morgan Williams, SigmaBleyzer, Chairman, Executive Committee, Board
of Directors; John Stephens, Cape Point Capital, Secretary/Treasurer;
Members of the Ukraine-U.S. Business Council Executive Committee:
Van Yeutter, Cargill; John W. Rauber, Jr, Deere & Co; Shannon Herzfeld,
Archer Daniels Midland; Michael Kist, Westinghouse; and Andrew Bej,
American Life Insurance Company/AIG.
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

OP-ED: By Walter Parchomenko in the Kyiv Post
Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 18 2006

In a dying Ukrainian village, a fragile grandmother turns to her visiting
adult granddaughter a few weeks before last March’s parliamentary elections
and asks: “Tell me child, what is NATO?” Surprised by the question, the
young woman inquires, “why Grandmother?”

The elderly woman responds: “You live in the big city, dear. President
[Viktor] Yushchenko says NATO is good, while former President [Leonid]
Kravchuk and his Ne Tak political party says it is bad. Tell me please, who
is right?”

This testimonial, recounted on April 28 in Kyiv during the Third Assembly of
the Ukraine-NATO Civic League, an umbrella organization for nearly 40
Ukrainian NGOs, underscores a serious problem on Ukraine’s road to NATO

Put simply, more than 80 percent of Ukrainians remain in the dark about
NATO, according to a recent survey conducted by the highly respected
Democratic Initiatives Foundation.

To anyone who even casually follows the NATO scene in Ukraine, low public
support for NATO, and Ukrainian membership in it, comes as no surprise.
Earlier reliable surveys also reveal that few Ukrainians understand what
NATO is and why it is worth joining.

Moreover, this low public support has dropped even further as a result of
the fierce anti-NATO campaign launched by several political parties just
months before the recent parliamentary elections. Significantly, the attack
upon NATO was more vitriolic than any conducted by Soviet leaders, according
to Ukrainian officials and NGO activists who participated in the recent
Ukraine-NATO Civic League Assembly.

What is surprising, however, is that no systematic effort has been made by
the Ukrainian government to harness the power of Ukrainian television and
other media to dramatically increase Ukrainian understanding of and support
for NATO prior to a possible future national referendum on the subject of
Ukrainian membership in NATO. Nor is such an effort even on the horizon.

This situation is curious for several reasons. First, President Yushchenko’s
commitment to NATO membership seems unquestionable. His intense desire to
join the alliance is reflected in the country’s impressive defense reform
strategy and his many bold declarations.

For example, in his speech at the “Common Vision for Common Neighborhood”
summit in Vilnius on May 4, the president stressed that NATO is “one of the
strategic targets of Ukraine’s state policy” and that “guaranteeing Europe’s
enlargement is one of the most serious challenges of the day.”

That same day, in an interview with Lithuanian television, Yushchenko
asserted that there is “no greater challenge” today for the country’s
political elite than NATO and EU membership. He also made a very important
admission in Vilnius. He stated categorically that dramatic steps such as
NATO membership require the overwhelming support of Ukrainian society.

The absence of a far-reaching information campaign is also very odd because
reliable, detailed information about NATO and the advantages of membership
is available in Ukraine. The information seminars and round tables conducted
by NATO throughout the country in recent years, with the assistance of
respected Ukrainian NGOs, have produced much useful literature and are an
essential instrument for facilitating informed public debate here in

Ideally, this effort, which includes Euro-clubs and summer camps for members
of the younger generation, should be expanded and intensified. However, as
surveys show, the impact of these seminars and clubs on the wider population
is still very limited. And, not surprisingly, these seminars often attract
individuals who already support NATO membership for Ukraine. These are true
believers seeking more detailed information, or simply the moral support of
like-minded individuals.

Finally, the failure of the Ukrainian government to disseminate widely
accurate information about NATO is curious because significant funding for
this effort is available. The State Committee for TV and Radio Broadcasting,
which is responsible for coordinating and disseminating information about
NATO and Euro-integration issues, has been allocated more than Hr 5 million
this year to implement special projects that promise to better inform
citizens about European and Euro-Atlantic integration.

And yet, amazingly, one would have searched Ukrainian television in vain
during the past year for a single information-commercial about NATO, which
could help dispel negative stereotypes of the alliance and provide useful

Similarly, even in the country’s capital, a city where one passes countless
meter-high glass-covered billboards every few steps, receptacles that
displayed a wide variety of political posters during the recent pre-election
campaign in addition to conventional advertising, incredibly, one will not
find a single eye-catching, thought-provoking NATO image or information
poster, neither in these glass-covered containers on streets, nor on public

How can we better understand the government’s failure to launch a
systematic, multi-media NATO information campaign that targets the masses

in cities and villages throughout the country, and not just the sympathetic
Ukrainian elite?

One Ukrainian NGO activist who spoke at the Third Assembly of the
Ukraine-NATO League offered the following insight. He said this egregious
official failure is not primarily about money. Rather, the problem lies with
the “information politics” of the government. In his words, “It’s not that
we can’t give the needed important information, we don’t want to. Today,
there is insufficient political will.”

Moreover, he stressed, “today society doesn’t know about NATO and therefore
doesn’t support it,” observing that information about NATO appears rarely,
mostly on television news broadcasts, and only for a few seconds.

But the problem, unfortunately, runs much deeper than a lack of sufficient
political will and is profoundly systemic. Today there is no clear
understanding in the Ukrainian government about what needs to be done to
effectively inform Ukraine’s masses about NATO and the advantages of
membership, no description of short-term and strategic priorities, no
breakdown of resources required, and no detailed action plan for
implementing a far-reaching information campaign.

Instead, there is complacency, wishful thinking and a false sense of
security within the Ukrainian government about NATO membership. There is
also the apparent belief in the presidential administration that Ukrainians,
left to their own devices, will gradually see the wisdom of joining NATO and
that massive public support for Ukrainian membership will slowly but
steadily grow over the next few years on its own.

This is a very unrealistic assumption that ignores several key facts: the
recent decrease in Ukrainian public support for NATO, unwavering Russian
opposition to Ukraine’s NATO push, and continuing public anti-NATO protests
in Ukraine (for example, on May 9 in Sevastopol).

                                 WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE?
NATO seminars and round tables in Ukraine are very important, indeed, but
the NATO discussion must move beyond the seminar room. It must catch the
attention of millions of Ukrainians who instinctively turn away from any
talk of NATO, individuals who are either indifferent or hostile to NATO and
unlikely ever to attend a NATO information seminar.

The Ukrainian government can play a crucial role in disseminating widely
reliable information and more accurate, nuanced images of NATO. The State
Committee for TV and Radio Broadcasting can be a beacon of light and
understanding for the vast majority of Ukrainians still in the dark about

It can let citizens near and far know that NATO membership is a big plus for
the country: an important bridge to the European Union and a guarantee that
a professional, didovshchina (brutal hazing)-free army will develop here in
the foreseeable future. It can do this by supporting bold information
projects which are homegrown, imaginative and even employ humor. The
disarming power of humor should not be underestimated, nor its very special
role in Ukrainian culture.

The State Committee for TV and Radio Broadcasting must not shy away from
employing television, the most watched medium, which reaches even
inquisitive grannies in distant villages. Its failure to do so, to date, is
inexcusable. Importantly, Ukraine has 14 million pensioners, individuals
more likely to vote in any future national referendum on NATO membership
than many members of the country’s MTV generation.

Given the conspicuous, institutional incapacity of the Ukrainian government
to implement important programs – the NATO information campaign is but one
example – one thing is clear. President Yushchenko must be the catalyst for
action in the government’s NATO information campaign.

All the good news in Ukraine’s NATO picture, and there is a great deal
indeed, should not blind him to the daunting NATO information challenge at
home. The president will need to play a very active role on the domestic
front if significant progress is to be made during the next few years.

More specifically, he will need to act as a whip or enforcer and personally
oversee the development of an action plan with specific and achievable
benchmarks, appointing officials who will be held accountable for the
implementation of this plan.

Unless this is done, the president should expect business as usual from the
government’s entrenched, largely unresponsive bureaucracy. And in a few
years time, he may be unpleasantly surprised to learn that overwhelming
public support for NATO membership, an essential requirement by his own
admission, has not miraculously materialized on its own.       -30-
Walter Parchomenko, a Ph.D. and Senior Fellow with the Atlantic Council of
the United States, is currently based in Ukraine. The views expressed above
are purely his own.

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
                                THREAT TO SOVEREIGNTY

Associated Press (AP), Kiev, Ukraine, Tue, May 30, 2006

KIEV, Ukraine – Pro-Russian opposition parties Tuesday railed against
President Viktor Yushchenko’s government for allowing a U.S. naval ship to
enter a Ukrainian port, calling it a threat to the nation.

The USS Advantage’s arrival in the Crimean port of Feodosiya sparked
protests and left the government scrambling to explain that it was coming as
part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Partnership for Peace program
and was only bringing equipment for exercises this summer in the Black Sea.

Yushchenko wants Ukraine to join NATO, but the military alliance remains
deeply unpopular, particularly in the largely Russian-speaking east and

Natalya Vitrenko, leader of a political party influential on the Black Sea
peninsula of Crimea, accused Yushchenko of ignoring legislation that
requires parliamentary approval before any foreign military troops or ships
enter Ukrainian territory.

She also noted that parliament earlier this year voted to bar foreign troops
from participating in military exercises in Ukraine. “On May 27, an act of
state betrayal was committed by Ukraine’s top officials,” Vitrenko said.

The larger pro-Russian Party of the Regions called the ship’s arrival “an
attempt to infringe on Ukraine’s sovereignty and national security” and
urged punishment of those who approved it. The opposition Social Democratic
Party (United) also slammed the government.

Navy spokesman Mykola Nedohipchenko said the ship came to participate in Sea
Breeze peacekeeping exercises, which Ukraine has been conducting annually
since 1997. He said it delivered construction facilities to help Ukrainians
update their training ground, bulldozers, lifting cranes, and medicine. The
exercises are to take place in July-August for up to 45 days and involve 17
countries, including the United States.

“The protest is just a political game aimed to cause unrest in Crimea,”
Nedohipchenko said. Crimea has a large ethnic Russian population and its
main port, Sevastopol – 160 kilometers from Feodosia – is home to both the
Russian and Ukrainian Black Sea fleets.

The Defense Ministry said it will ask parliament to approve the training
when lawmakers reconvene next month. The U.S. ship left the port a day after
it arrived. Vitrenko, who is known for her anti-U.S. stance, accused NATO of
plotting to construct a special permanent military base in Crimea. Ukraine’s
NATO office did not return a phone call seeking comment.     -30-

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                            NOT BELONG TO UKRAINE 

TV 5 Kanal, Kiev, in Ukrainian 1800 gmt 30 May 06
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Tue, May 30, 2006

KYIV – A Russian Duma deputy speaker, Vladimir Zhirinovskiy, has said in a
live interview with Ukraine’s 5 Kanal television that Crimea should belong
either to Russia or Turkey but not Ukraine. He was commenting in a live
video link from Paris on his parliamentary faction’s initiative to make an
inquiry to the Russian cabinet on the possibility of annexing Crimea on the
basis of an 18th-century treaty between Russia and Turkey.

“European lawyers, not us, if they look at all the documents and analyse
them, will say that we are right, that Crimea should be either transferred
to Turkey or returned to Russia. No way it should be part of Ukraine. In no
case should the city of Sevastopol be part of Ukraine,” Zhirinovskiy said.

“As a lawyer and Turkologist, I explain that it is international law that
always takes precedence. Our treaty with Turkey clearly stipulates that if
Russia removes its flag from Crimea, Crimea is restored to Turkey. It does
not matter whether Ukraine existed or not, this is an international treaty,”
he added.

The Ukrainian presidential representative in Crimea, Henadiy Moskal, who
also took part in the talk show via a video link from Simferopol, rejected
Zhirinovskiy’s words, citing other historical treaties cancelling and
superseding the accord quoted by Zhirinovskiy. He added that Turkey is not
the successor to the Ottoman Empire and that a 1996 Ukrainian-Turkish treaty
recognizes Ukraine’s present borders.

Moskal criticized Zhirinovskiy’s faction over its member’s statements about
plans to pressurize Kiev politically and economically, using the Russian
diaspora: “This is an act of provocation and I think Vladimir Volfovich
[Zhirinovskiy] should put him in his place to prevent him making any more
such statements. They probably deliver the biggest blow to those who indeed
support Russia and who are indeed disposed towards cooperation with Russia.
They put people off Russia by making such statements.”

For his part, Zhirinovskiy threatened Moskal and other Ukrainian officials
with an international tribunal for allowing a US military ship to call at
the Ukrainian port of Feodosiya without parliament’s permission. He warned
that the US ship’s visit may signal a Turkish invasion and trigger a war.

Zhirinovskiy said: “It is impermissible for a foreign army to enter another
state’s territory without any legal grounds. Ukraine is being occupied. We
feel sorry for you, but this is having a direct impact on us, because Crimea
is populated by Russians and all the problems about who Crimea belongs to
are still unresolved.

Look. Turkey has occupied Cyprus simply because 100,000 Turks live there.
That’s it. They have all legal reasons to claim Crimea. Therefore, the US
army showed up first – to be followed by the Turkish army. The Turkish navy
is ready to enter all Crimean ports and raise the Turkish flag, completely
cutting Crimea off Ukraine. Americans need this conflict to divert attention
from Iraq and Iran.”

He added: “As soon as American soldiers step down on Ukrainian soil, this
will sound a war bell, signalling a sharpening of relations between Russia
and those Ukrainian officials who illegally seized power as a result of the
third round of elections in November 2004 [as heard, should be December] and
in the recent [parliamentary] election.”

He issued a harsh warning to Moskal: “I would like to draw the attention of
the Ukrainian presidential representative in Crimea and other Ukrainian
officials that all of them will face criminal charges for what they are
doing in Ukraine – before a future tribunal – over the illegal proclamation
of independence or, say, for inviting foreign troops to Crimea.”

He rejected the interviewer’s challenge that he might be interfering in
Ukraine’s internal affairs by inciting a split in Ukraine. He said that
Russia is entitled to defend its compatriots abroad: “A split is not about
us wanting a kind of split, but this is the will of voters from all of

In the presidential election, half the Ukrainian residents voted for
authorities different from those who are in Kiev now. These are mainly
Russian and Russian-speaking people, and therefore Russia has all legal,
moral and historical reasons to defend our citizens.”

The third interviewee in the programme was former Ukrainian Defence Minister
Yevhen Marchuk, who criticized Russian MPs for taking serious issues, such
as Crimea, too lightly. He described the Duma’s Crimea inquiry as
“hooliganism” and rebuked the Ukrainian executive for not responding
properly.                                          -30-

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

OP-ED: By Tammy Lynch in the Kyiv Post, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, Jun 01 2006

Last week, the three potential members of an “Orange” democratic
parliamentary majority voted together for the first time. Two hundred and
forty deputies from the Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc, the pro-presidential Our
Ukraine bloc and the Socialist Party agreed to adjourn the Rada until June 7
in order to “complete” a coalition agreement.

But despite optimistic pronouncements from political party leaders that an
agreement is all but assured, a big disagreement appears to remain – namely,
who will become Ukraine’s next prime minister?

A failure to agree on this point would doom the coalition, and possibly
damage international support for Ukraine’s attempts to integrate into
Western structures. Western European and U.S. leaders have made no secret
of the fact that they would like to see a government formed immediately, and
that they view an Orange coalition as more conducive to Western integration
than any other coalition permutation.

The questions surrounding a tentative June 21 visit to Ukraine by U.S.
President George Bush underscore this point. U.S. officials say privately
that should the stop-over in Kyiv be confirmed, Bush may be prepared to
announce U.S. support for the opening of NATO accession talks and to
use the opportunity to support Ukraine’s entry into the WTO this year.

The visit promises U.S. support for President Viktor Yushchenko’s agenda.
It also entails pressure on Ukraine’s politicians to finally agree on a new
government more than two months after parliamentary elections. Some U.S.
officials have said, however, that without a reform-oriented parliamentary
coalition already in place before mid-June, President Bush will not come to

On May 24, in a positive sign, the Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc (BYUT) and
the Socialist Party initialed a joint majority coalition agreement. The
agreement reportedly includes the standard European coalition provision
that the biggest party in the coalition will name the prime minister.

On March 26, BYUT garnered over 22 percent of votes, Our Ukraine received
slightly fewer than 14 percent and the Socialists over 6 percent. Tymoshenko
has already declared that her bloc would nominate her.

But just hours earlier, Our Ukraine announced that it had finalized its own
draft coalition agreement – one which did not include any provision for
choosing the prime minister – and called the initialing of the
BYUT-Socialist agreement “a stunt.”

On 25 May, following the joint vote to adjourn parliament, Our Ukraine
representatives reiterated their opposition to including the prime minister
principle in any final agreement. If this position is maintained, an
agreement may be unreachable.

The omission is hard to explain. Throughout Western Europe, coalition
agreements routinely include mechanisms for choosing cabinet personnel.
And the prime minister is routinely named from the biggest coalition

Germany – which Our Ukraine points to as an example – is a case in point.
Angela Merkel, based on her party’s tiny four-seat plurality, attained a
commitment to be named Chancellor before she consented to sit down for
official talks over issues.

“We will not start coalition talks until they accept the democratic
principle that the biggest party nominates the head of government,” Governor
Juergen Ruettgers, a member of Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union, said at
the time. This commitment eventually was enshrined in the coalition

Our Ukraine’s refusal to accept this principle leaves a decidedly
anti-European impression, and provides fodder for European representatives
who do not believe Ukraine should be integrated into Europe’s economic and
military unions.

Nevertheless, certain individuals within Our Ukraine have stated that they
simply will not support a coalition with Yulia Tymoshenko at its head. These
individuals dismiss the fact that their party finished eight points behind
BYUT in the election as some sort of abnormality. But, recent opinion polls
showing that Our Ukraine’s support has now dipped to 10 percent suggest that
this is not the case.

As the parties argue, reforms are stalled, important segments of the economy
are underperforming, and Russian gas giant Gazprom is preparing to raise gas
prices substantially beginning 1 July.

This, Acting Economics Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk recently said, could lead
to a significant economic slowdown in the country, at a time when growth is
already very limited. Yet, there has been little urgency to confirm a new
government to tackle this problem.

And, although Yulia Tymoshenko has been criticized for speaking publicly
about negotiations, it is, in fact, Viktor Yushchenko and the Our Ukraine
party that have received the bulk of the criticism about the situation from
foreign officials and press.

An early May appearance by Presidential Secretariat Head Oleh Rybachuk on
BBC’s HARDTalk provides the clearest example. Rybachuk spent most of the
interview ducking and weaving, thanks to journalist Stephen Sackur’s intense
questioning over everything from the lack of a new government to the
discredited January 2006 gas deal.

To Rybachuk’s credit, he maintained his composure. But he had difficulty
effectively answering many questions presented to him. These included the
most basic: “Yulia Tymoshenko clearly won the biggest number of votes in
that [proposed] Orange coalition, 22 percent of the vote, a much bigger bloc
than that which went to Our Ukraine, so she must be the prime minister,
mustn’t she?”

In the midst of a somewhat rambling answer, Rybachuk disagreed, suggesting
that Tymoshenko first must “convince [people] she is a different person.”
Sackur’s disturbing response suggested corruption around the president. “You
know what many Ukrainians seem to think?” he said.

“That is, that in the past, Mrs. Tymoshenko went after some of the cronies
close to Mr. Yushchenko and he does not want her back in power because he
fears that she would once again go on an anti-corruption crusade that would
damage people close to him.”

Rybachuk called this statement a “nice fairy tale.” However, the generally
negative tenor of Sackur’s questions is alarming coming from one of Europe’s
most respected interviewers on one of Europe’s most viewed English-language
news programs. Yushchenko could use some support, and the President of the
United States would like to provide it on 21 June.

But Yushchenko first must demonstrate his commitment to tackling Ukraine’s
most difficult problems.  His first step must be to support a coalition
agreement. To do so, he must convince Our Ukraine – which campaigned under
the slogan “The Party of Yushchenko” – that it is time to accept the reality
of a Tymoshenko premiership based on election results.

Should he fail, it would be a blow to Ukraine’s attempts to prove its
readiness for European integration. It could also undermine generally
excellent U.S.-Ukraine relations at a time when Ukraine and its president
need support more than ever.                        -30-
Tammy Lynch is a Senior Research Fellow at Boston University’s Institute
for the Study of Conflict, Ideology & Policy.
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

Agence France Presse (AFP), Kiev, Ukraine, Wed May 31, 2006

KIEV – The US embassy in Ukraine denied charges from the country’s
pro-Russian opposition that NATO planned to build a base in the south of the

“Any claims that the US or NATO plans to establish a military base in
Ukraine are incorrect,” Brent Byers, a spokesman for the US embassy in Kiev,
told AFP.

The comment came after protests at the docking of a US Navy ship in Crimea
as part of Ukrainian-NATO military exercises.

Pro-Russian opposition protesters claimed the ship was delivering weapons,
but Ukrainian and US officials said it was only carrying materials for

One opposition party asserted the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
intended to establish a base in Ukraine.

“What the construction materials will be used for is to enhance the basic
living conditions at the Ukrainian training facility at Starokrymsky” in
Crimea, Byers said.

The “Sea Breeze 2006” maneuvers are designed to develop military cooperation
between NATO members and their former Cold-War Warsaw Pact enemies, who

are now participants in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s Partnership for
Ukraine’s pro-Western President Viktor Yushchenko is in favor of Ukraine
ultimately joining NATO, but a sizable faction of the population is opposed
to that goal.

Opposition to the Western military alliance is strongest in the Crimean
peninsula, which serves as the base for the Russian fleet in the Black Sea.

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
     NOTE: Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
           Legal trade dried up as Ukraine cracked down on its border with
      Transnistria, a separatist region of Moldova, but the smuggling persists.

By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times
New York, New York, Sunday, May 28, 2006

KUCHURGAN, Ukraine – It did not take long for the European Union’s border
experts to spot evidence of the shadowy trade on Ukraine’s notoriously
porous border with Moldova. It came in an unexpected form, though: Tyson
frozen chicken.

“Every time, leg quarters,” Torsten Spehr, a German border officer, said at
this border crossing with Moldova’s self-declared separatist region,

In a recent six months, more than 40,000 tons of chicken was shipped,
legally, into Transnistria through Black Sea ports in Ukraine, said experts
sent by the European Union this year to monitor the border.

Because that amounted to 146 pounds for each Transnistrian, something was
clearly amiss.

The chicken is reloaded into smaller trucks, often with makeshift
refrigeration, and smuggled back into Ukraine. There it is sold below market
rates, because it evaded customs duties and Ukrainian sanitary inspections,
turning hefty profit – for whom, exactly, is not clear – of nearly $1,000 a

“They make more money than they would dealing with weapons,” said Joachim
Haack, a German who is in charge of the European Union’s outpost here.

The racket represents the murky economy that has sustained Transnistria, a
ragged ribbon of territory along Moldova’s eastern border, since it declared
its independence from Moldova in 1992.

And it goes beyond a dispute over customs and chicken parts, which are still
known here as “Bush legs,” after an early 1990’s program to ship American
poultry to the former Soviet republics.

Now, Ukraine and Moldova have governments eager to burnish relations with
Europe and the United States. And they have taken steps to shut down not
only smuggling but also the unregistered trade that has flowed from
Transnistria with little regard for Moldova’s sovereign borders or Ukrainian

Late last year, the two countries invited the European Union’s observer
mission to monitor the frontier on both sides of Transnistria.

Since March 3, Moldova and Ukraine have also refused to allow Transnistria
to ship any goods – like steel, electronics and clothing – that have not
been cleared through Moldovan customs.

Officials in Transnistria refused to comply, defying the central Moldovan
authorities, as they have for nearly 14 years, and calling the new rules a
blockade. Virtually all legal trade across the Ukrainian border has since

“The 650,000 people who live in Transnistria have become hostages,” a
spokesman for the region’s foreign ministry, Vitali V. Ignatyev, said by

After years of impasse, officials in Ukraine and Moldova, at the
encouragement of the United States and Europe, are pressing for a solution
to the conflict in Transnistria. And they are doing so at the risk of
inflaming Transnistria’s separatist sentiment and worsening relations with
the region’s patron, Russia.

The goal, a senior American official said, is to “effect a change in the
status quo.” “The only other country that could do that is Russia,” the
official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of diplomatic
protocol. “And they are not interested.”

Transnistria, also known as Trans-Dniester, is one of the so-called frozen
conflicts that emerged from the collapse of the Soviet Union. For a long
time, Ukrainian businesses and politicians provided support by tolerating –
and some say profiting from – the exports that poured in and out of
landlocked Transnistria through the Black Sea ports of Odessa. The election
of President Viktor A. Yushchenko a year and a half ago appears to be
changing that.

Mr. Yushchenko’s government now portrays the 286-mile border with
Transnistria as a sieve for contraband. Anatoly K. Kinakh, until recently
Mr. Yushchenko’s national security adviser, estimated that the illegal trade
from Transnistria amounted to $250 million a year.

“The Transnistrian situation is one that affects the national security of
Ukraine,” Mr. Kinakh said in an interview in Kiev, the capital.

Here at Kuchurgan there are signs of more vigorous enforcement along a
frontier that was not even marked in most places until this year. That was
when Ukrainian border troops dug a trench along it. For the first time,
signs marking the border have appeared, warning smugglers and others to stay

The European Union’s experts have no enforcement powers, but since they
began monitoring, the Ukrainians have increased their patrols and their
seizures of contraband. Already this year the authorities have seized 400
tons of chicken returning to Ukraine, a small fraction of the total
smuggled, experts say.

In April, border troops seized 10 trucks in one convoy, with nearly 100
tons, much of it nearing its expiration date. In that case, the smugglers
had welded a makeshift steel bridge to span the new trench. Twenty were

Antti Hartikainen, the Finnish deputy leader of the European Union’s
mission, said the amount of chicken and the sophistication of the smuggling
efforts, including the need for warehouses in Transnistria and the
retrofitted trucks to transport the chicken back, suggested that the
operation had official support in Transnistria.

“This has to be a well-organized business,” he said in an interview at
mission headquarters in Odessa.

Whose business remains unclear. Much of the chicken is shipped to a company
called Sherif, one of Transnistria’s largest conglomerates, European and
Ukrainian officials said.

In a telephone interview from the Transnistrian capital, Tiraspol, the
company’s deputy director, Pavel A. Shkilnyuk, angrily denied any connection
to smuggling and accused Ukrainians of smuggling cheap Chinese goods into
Transnistria. “I will not give you any information,” he said, then hung up.

Tyson Foods, based in Springdale, Ark., said it shipped a “limited amount”
of chicken to Moldova through Ukrainian ports – far less than to Russia,
which accounted for a quarter of Tyson’s international sales.

“We’ve heard reports of various products being improperly transported in and
out of the Ukraine through Moldova,” a spokesman, Gary Mickelson, said via
e-mail, “and we try to avoid doing business with any companies we believe
may be involved in such illegal activity.” He did not say whether any
shipments had been suspended because of those concerns.

It is unclear whether the new controls will shut down the illicit trade or
whether the measures will soon ease the impasse between Moldova and

Transnistria canceled a round of negotiations, and its leaders have
threatened to hold a referendum on independence or to declare Transnistria
part of Russia.

[“Russia has always protected citizens of Transnistria,” the region’s
president, Igor N. Smirnov, said Wednesday, the Olvia news agency reported.
“Both sides have lived together spiritually, as we have a common, purely
Russian mentality.”]

The European Union has praised the willingness of Ukraine and Moldova to
improve border controls, but it has also criticized shortcomings.

Border posts lack a centralized database to track who and what crosses at
various points of entry, making detection of smugglers difficult, said a
report the mission gave the authorities on May 5.

The report also criticized a lack of basics, like proper lighting and
shortcomings in Ukrainian laws, that let smugglers go largely unpunished.

Vladimir K. Pleshko, deputy director of the Odessa region’s border troops,
said in an interview that Ukraine welcomed the aid and was making progress
on the border. “Of course, we cannot say it is 100 percent sealed,” he said.
“The United States is a very rich country, and it cannot seal its borders.”
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

             Shops on the airport road outside Odessa are shipping containers
By Steven Lee Myers, Foreign Desk
The New York Times, New York, NY, Thu, 18 May 2006

SEVENTH-KILOMETER MARKET, Ukraine , May 16 — Most of the shops

here on the airport road outside Odessa are neither buildings nor stalls. They
are shipping containers, stacked two high in rows long enough to be called
streets, though these are little more than overcrowded alleys.

From their steel gates spills a consumer abundance of inexpensive clothes,
shoes and toys, kitchenware, hardware and software, cosmetics, sporting
goods and various sundries — virtually everything, in short, in a part of
the world that not long ago was used to getting by with virtually nothing.

Jeans for $9. Turkish suits, marginally stylish, for $60. Dior, Chanel and
Armani are all a steal, if one harbors no complexes about authenticity.
Speaking of complexes, there are no dressing rooms in shipping containers.
Modesty, though, is in short supply, unlike anything else here, and men and
women strip unabashedly in search of a proper fit.

“Juice! Water! Beer! Watch your feet!” a woman shouted as she plowed a
battered cart through this cacophonous, dizzying retail labyrinth, offering
to slake any thirst, with a warning to avoid any unfortunate collision with
her mobile enterprise. That explains how the market earned its informal
nickname, Tolchok. In Russian, still the dominant language in this part of
Ukraine, it derives from the verb to push.

But the only way to avoid her was to stumble back into the entrepreneurial
embrace of another container and risk encountering someone trying something

“They were growing wheat here when I came,” said Aleksandr Sedov, who once
programmed computers for the Soviet space program and now sells, mostly,
suspenders and women’s blouses. “Now this place is called the field of

It was also a dump and a garbage incinerator — paved over and torn down,
respectively — when the last Soviet city fathers of Odessa expelled the
pioneers in a previously unknown free market from the city, banishing them
to a 10-acre spot seven kilometers, or about four miles, from the city’s
limits, hence the name. That was in 1989, as the Soviet Union itself was
unraveling, and what has since emerged is Europe’s most extraordinary and,
some say, largest market.

It now sprawls over 170 acres. The largest shopping center in the United
States, the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn., covers 96 acres, though
all comparisons end there.

The market is part third-world bazaar, part post-Soviet Wal-Mart, a place of
unadulterated and largely unregulated capitalism where certain questions — 
about salaries, rents, taxes or last names — are generally met with

Open every day but Friday, the market now has 16,000 traders or so and a
central staff of 1,200, mostly security guards and janitors, making it the
region’s largest employer. An estimated 150,000 shoppers come each day,
traveling in hundreds of buses from as far as Russia, more than 300 miles
away, in search of the bargains that the evident avoidance of customs and
taxes makes possible.

“Over the 15 years of its operation it has been called different things,”
the Ukrainian newsweekly Zerkalo Nedeli wrote in 2004, “but in fact it is a
state within a state, with its own laws and rules. It has become a sinecure
for the rich and a trade haven for the poor.”

Change looms. President Viktor A. Yushchenko, elected in December 2004, has
vowed to bring Ukraine’s economy out of the shadows, which is apparently
where seller and shopper alike would rather it stay.

During the presidential campaign, he pledged not to close the market,
saying, “Nobody will roll Odessa’s Seventh-Kilometer under asphalt.” He
apparently had something else in mind: tax inspectors. When Mr. Yushchenko
visited the market last December, he ordered the creation of a commission to
examine compliance with the tax code at a market where the daily sales,
according to Zerkalo Nedeli, were believed to be as high as $20 million.

No one really knows, not even Anatoly I. Berladin, the deputy director of
the market, which is owned by a local land and agriculture tycoon, Viktor A.
Dobriansky, and three others.

Mr. Berladin said the owners themselves contributed roughly $11 million a
year in federal and local taxes, but with the containers franchised out, the
taxes on goods and income, like customs duties, are not the market’s
business. “We never tried to control it,” he said. “We are not the tax

Mr. Sedov, the former computer engineer, said he paid $2,300 a month to rent
his container. Others, depending on location, of course, rent for $6,000 or
more. Like many left adrift by the Soviet implosion, he turned to shuttle
trading, bringing in what he could from Poland or other countries of the
former Soviet bloc.

Some, like Mr. Dobriansky, made millions; more, like Mr. Sedov, have
squeezed a living out of 12-hour days.

A woman from neighboring Moldova comes on weekends bearing slippers from a
factory where she used to work. “They pay workers with them,” she said of
her stock, made by a company called Florare in Moldova’s unrecognized
breakaway region, Transnistria. She gave only her name and patronymic,
Yelena Yakovlena, refusing, like most here, to reveal her family name.

The market itself now has its own Web site — — and the owners
have begun to build covered structures and actual buildings. Three health
clinics provide emergency care at no cost, Mr. Berladin said, and there are
a fire station and, at last, modern toilet facilities.

There are markets like this, if not so large, across Ukraine and Russia and
the rest of the former Soviet Union, and gradually, sleek new malls are
going up in these countries, as are big-box retailers. One just down the
road, called Metro, caters to the budding consumer who, if not middle class,
can afford better than the cheapest goods from China, Turkey and other
low-end suppliers.

“The fate of the market depends on the economy of Ukraine,” Mr. Berladin
explained. “As soon as the economy of Ukraine develops normally, the
necessity of our market will die.”

And then what will become of this extraordinary place?

“We will go into wholesale.”                          -30-

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
10.               “HOW TO WIN AN INFORMATION WAR”
          Ukraine losing information war against Russia says media official

By Bohdan Chervak, Head Information Policy Department
State Committee for TV and Radio
Ukrayinska Pravda web site, Kiev, in Ukrainian 29 May 06
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Wed, May 31, 2006

Russia held a successful information war against Ukraine during the gas
crisis and the meat-and-dairy row, a Ukrainian information policy official
has written in an article. Bohdan Chervak, the head of the information
policy department of the State Committee for TV and Radio, emphasized the
importance of creating public TV, but he said that state TV channels were
also needed and should be financed much better to effectively promote
Ukraine’s position.

The following is the text of the article by Bohdan Chervak entitled “How to
win an information war” posted on Ukrayinska Pravda web site on 29 May;
subheadings have been inserted editorially:

Word combinations “information war”, “information attack” and “information
terrorism” have firmly entered the vocabulary of Ukrainian politicians and
statesmen. Meanwhile, it should be noted that all of them just ascertain the
fact of an information expansion against Ukraine and the necessity of “doing
something” in this context.

Meanwhile, if we analyse the consequences of information attacks recently
carried out against the Ukrainian state, we can come to a distressing
conclusion: Ukraine is actually losing control over its own information
sovereignty, and its territory is being influenced by information flows from
neighbouring countries with all subsequent consequences.

                      RUSSIA WAGES INFORMATION WAR
The first serious information war against Ukraine is known to have been
started during the gas confrontation between Russia and Ukraine [in December
2005 – January 2006].

It was the time when the Russian media initiated a flow of different news
reports to our country’s territory. They were aimed at making an image of
the Ukrainian authorities playing an “unfair game” with Russia. In
particular, they try to “steal” Russian gas and are unable to follow
generally accepted European standards in the course of negotiations.

Frankly speaking, the information attack from Moscow became a shock for the
Ukrainian society, and consequently, for the authorities. The Ukrainian
media just reproduced the Russian position for a long time, being unaware
that they were “playing” on the “aggressive” country’s side.

At that time Ukrainian president’s [Viktor Yushchenko’s] adviser Volodymyr
Horbulin was forced to recognize at one of his rare briefings: the
information war over the gas problem was initiated by the Russian side, and
the Ukrainian mass media insufficiently defended Ukraine’s interests.

“Unfortunately, the Ukrainian media did not properly defend the country’s
position due to their pluralism,” Yushchenko’s adviser said.

Yushchenko’s press secretary Iryna Herashchenko was more sincere. She said
almost in despair: “No-one of them defended the president’s position. When
it comes to national interests, one should make a choice: elections or
Ukraine. Ukrainian politicians and media should unite their efforts and stop
speculating on important problems.”

However, as it turned out later, developments around Russian gas supplies
and transit were just the beginning of a large-scale information expansion.

The Russian propaganda machine got a new momentum as early as March, and
Moscow-based Kommersant paper informed us about this. It was the paper which
had reported on the cancellation of broadcasting Ukrainian President Viktor
Yushchenko on [Russian state-owned] Rossiya TV channel.

In particular, asked by a journalist on whether a broadcast of an interview
with [German] Chancellor Angela Merkel would have been cancelled on the eve
of an election in Germany, one of the company’s top managers answered:
“These are different stories, as we have a single information space with
Ukraine, the same way as with Belarus.”

Like this, no more and no less.

Meanwhile, Russian media launched another information “canard”, having
accused Ukraine of alleged location of a secret CIA prison on its territory.

Obviously, this misinformation is aimed at destroying Ukraine’s positive
international image and forming Ukraine’s image as a state having a
“pro-American” “marionette” regime in power.

The events around Makariv-1, a military base where the Russian media
“uncovered” secret prisons, were not only a proof of continuing information
war, but also of Russia’s unwillingness to terminate it in principle.

Defence Minister Anatoliy Hrytsenko who had invited Russian journalists,
including the author of the Special Correspondent cycle (the one which had
actually aired the spot about “prisons”), Arkadiy Mamontov, soon made
certain of their general unwillingness to apologize for misinformation. They
just ignored the Ukrainian minister’s invitation.

The Russian mass media soon focused on the [Moldovan breakaway] “Dniester”
direction. They described new customs regulations for cargo from the
Dniester region introduced by Ukraine as an “attempt of pressure on
[Dniester region capital] Tiraspol” and accused the Ukrainian authorities of
“escalating tensions in the region”.

Russian propaganda pursued two goals in this situation: first, to discredit
so-called “Yushchenko plan” which, according to international experts’
assessments, remains the most realistic “road map” to settle the conflict
between Chisinau and Tiraspol; second, to confuse numerous Ukrainians living
in the Dniester region, who are likely to become official Kiev’s potential

While the Russians did not manage to achieve their first goal yet, they have
fully accomplished the second one. The majority of the Ukrainians living in
the Dniester region who had no sufficient information on the true reasons of
the conflict, failed to support Kiev’s position and accepted unsubstantiated
assurances from Tiraspol and Moscow.

Obviously, we have mentioned just the major “battles” from the information
front waged by the neighbouring country against Ukraine in the course of six
months. To be fair, we should also emphasize that Russia is not the only
country demonstrating it information muscles. Practically all neighbouring
countries broadcast for Ukraine, pursuing their own economical, political
and cultural interests at the same time.

In relation to this, a logical question arises: what is the Ukrainian state
doing and what can it do to protect its own information sovereignty?

There can be only one answer to this question: to introduce a brand-new,
up-to-date and efficient state information policy which will provide for the
country’s national interests, first of all in the information sphere.

Until recently, the authorities’ recent efforts in the information field
were mainly focused on elimination of rudiments of the previous regime. In
particular, mechanisms of production, spreading and usage of “temnyky”
[instructions on news coverage] as the means of the authorities’ pressure at
mass media have been dismantled.

Therefore, the authorities have made provisions for freedom of speech in the
country, and Ukrainian media got an opportunity to operate and develop in
the conditions of free and democratic society. However, the reality shows
that it is not sufficient for protecting the country, society and
individuals from foreign information expansion.

Obviously, when the conditions of freedom of speech are being met and the
media market has been de-monopolized, it is not easy for the authorities to
establish effective communication with the media and to present necessary
information to the Ukrainian society and abroad. Despite this, certain
experience has been accumulated.

For example, Viktor Yushchenko’s addresses broadcast by the National Radio
Company every Saturday have fully justified all hopes. However, it is
necessary to urgently develop information presence of the Ukrainian state,
first of all, in the national information space, not to mention
international broadcasting.

Public news media can and must become reliable allies of the authorities and
the state in this situation. The necessity of their establishment has been
discussed for a long time. Of course, state-owned information resources, in
particular, the modernization of the National TV Company of Ukraine, the
National Radio Company and regional state TV and radio companies may not be

I mean exactly “modernization”, because all previous plans of launching
social or public broadcasting were based on the idea of eliminating
state-owned media. There is no need to be a far-sighted politician to
understand that successful implementation of the project of establishing
public media directly depends on the country’s capacity to reinforce
available state-owned information resources which will consequently be
transformed in public news media.

Otherwise, state-owned media will go to “sponsors'” hands, which means
oligarchs in our case, and then one can forget about real public media.

Formation of social and public media on the basis of the National TV Company
of Ukraine, National Radio Company of Ukraine and regional state TV and
radio companies does not mean that the state should get rid of its own
information resources.

On the contrary, it should concentrate necessary levers for ensuring
Ukraine’s information presence in the world information and cultural space
in its hands. International broadcasting, or to be more precise, protection
of Ukraine’s own national and cultural interests abroad, is the direct
function of the state and authorities.

In addition, let us note that the share of state-owned information resources
in the leading western democracies currently equals up to 40 per cent, and
they successfully operate alongside with public and commercial mass media.

This is the reason why the incorporation of the Ukrainian TV and Radio
Broadcasting World Service [UTR] into the National TV Company of Ukraine,
which can become a public broadcaster in the future, is absolutely
ungrounded and cannot be justified from the point of view of protecting the
Ukrainian information space. UTR has belonged to the state and should remain
in its hands.

Moreover, transforming this company into a powerful information mouthpiece
is an obligation of the state. By the way, governments of the world’s
leading countries do not spare funds for supporting state-owned media.
                                FOREIGN EXPERIENCE
It was earlier this year when the House of Representatives of the US
Congress approved budgetary allocations for development of state-owned
international TV and radio broadcasting in the amount of 620m dollars.

The relevant document stipulates that the allocated funds are necessary for
carrying out activities related to the provision of information to
international audience, including purchases, installation and lease of new
objects for TV and radio. The Broadcasting Board of Governors (similar to
Ukrainian State TV and Radio Broadcasting Committee) operates within the
structure of the US government.

It is in charge of international broadcasting conducted in 61 languages by
the Voice of America and TV Marti channels, Al Hurra TV channel, Radio
Liberty and other state-owned media entities.

Someone can say that the USA is not an authority for us. But Russia is
carrying out similar state information policy. It is currently
systematically working on the establishment of a new Russia Today TV channel
due to broadcast for abroad 24 hours a day. The head of the Federal Agency
for the Press and Mass Communication (Russian information ministry), Mikhail
Seslavinskiy, forecasts that 30m dollars will be spent for these purposes.

                        SUPPORT FOR CULTURAL CHANNEL
It is necessary to provide all kinds of support to the government’s
initiative to modernize the Kultura state TV and radio company, which was
earlier established thanks to the efforts of the famous Ukrainian film
director, Oleh Biyma, and was aimed at propagating the best achievements of
Ukrainian culture in Ukraine and in the world.

It is even not worth speaking much about this channel’s capacities. Its
potential lies is inexhaustible sources of the Ukrainian cultural heritage,
which is a much more efficient way of forming our country’s positive image
than efforts of numerous officials from the Foreign Ministry.

By the way, the annual budget of the Russian Kultura TV and radio company
equals 200m US dollars. This sum is beyond any comparison with the sums
allocated for funding the Ukrainian Kultura channel.
                          INTERNET NEWS
It is necessary to pay attention to the absence of legal provisions for
operation of information activity subjects in the “UA” web domain. We can
trace a dangerous tendency of spreading untrue, distorted and sometimes
explicitly provocative information aimed at discrediting some individuals,
political parties, statesmen and business circles.

International practice shows that the world’s leading countries have
legislatively regulated the relations emerging during the use of the
Internet network.
                             STATE AUTHORITIES’ ROLE
The complex of measures related to the formation of efficient state
information policy is not limited with references to its importance and
determination of the new role of state media. It is necessary to drastically
change the nature of interaction between the authorities and news media. The
same way, one should not invent a “bicycle” either.

State authorities are likely to act as the major information producer in the
whole world. For example, 60 per cent of news on state activities in the USA
is produced by the state itself.

Provisions for this work in the leading European countries are made the
special state authorities in charge of developing communications which unite
the authorities and media.

For example, the issue of providing information to people in Germany is
tackled by a federal government’s agency in charge of work with the media,
its staff amounting to 500 people and overall budget for information
purposes equalling 20m euros.

It should be the major function in the activity of the Ukrainian State
Committee for TV and Radio Broadcasting which, in accordance with
legislation in force, is in charge of implementing the state information

This article did not tackle other elements of state policy in information
sphere, in particular, publishing books and printed media, protection of
social morality, activities of the National Council for TV and Radio
Broadcasting, etc. Each of these areas require a special fundamental

However, I would like to hope that the aforementioned considerations will
help the Ukrainians to win all information wars in the future.     -30-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]

                       OF DNIPROPETROVSK CHALLENGED 
Associated Press (AP)Kiev, Ukraine, Friday, May 26, 2006 12:16 p.m.

KIEV – The prosecutor in an eastern Ukrainian city appealed Friday against
the decision of the municipal council to grant special status to the Russian
language, the Interfax news agency reported.

Prosecutor Mykola Hornostaev filed a lawsuit at a local court against the
Dnipropetrovsk city council’s move to make Russian a regional language,
allowing it to be used together with Ukrainian in state and public
institutions as well as at universities and cultural institutions, Interfax
reported. Nobody was available immediately for comment at the local
prosecutor’s office.

Tuesday the overwhelmingly Russian-speaking Dnipropetrovsk became the fifth
area to adopt such a measure, following similar moves in the eastern regions
of Luhansk and Donetsk, the eastern city of Kharkiv and the Crimean city of

President Viktor Yushchenko’s administration has said it would be
unconstitutional to grant Russian special status, contending that the
document declares Ukrainian to be the only state language, and ordered
prosecutors to consider a legal challenge.

The language issue has become one of the most sensitive in Ukraine, where
Russian dominated during Soviet times and today many still consider it their
native language, particularly in the east and south. In western regions,
Ukrainian dominates and nationalists see protecting the language as a way to
prevent meddling from Moscow.

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
    If you are receiving more than one copy of the AUR please contact us.
                                    PROBLEM LAWFULLY

Itar-Tass, Moscow, Russia, Wed, May 31, 2006

KIEV – The Ukrainian leadership has promised to solve the problem of the
Russian language in the country by lawful methods.

“Central authorities have no power to decide, administratively or in any
other forcible manner, on the legitimacy of decisions made by local
governments,” Ukrainian presidential adviser Nikolai Poludenny said on
Wednesday, commenting on the decisions by several regions to give Russian
the status of a regional language.

“No one will use administrative measures and methods against them. The main
form of influence in solving this problem is prosecutors’ work to oversee
compliance with law by local governments,” he explained.

Poludenny described as “a threatening tendency” the decisions by local
governments to make Russian a regional language.

“The state is doing everything allowed by law to preclude this tendency,”
the adviser added.

Prosecutors have submitted their protests but most of them have not been
considered yet and in regions where the protests have been rejected they
filed lawsuits, Poludenny said. He believes that the Constitutional Court of
Ukraine should address the status of the Russian language in the country.

Kharkov, Sevastopol, Donetsk, Dnepropetrovsk, Lugansk, Nikolayev, and
Yalta have given Russian the status of a regional language.

Ukraine’s opposition Party of Regions said it would raise the problem of
language policy at the first session of the Supreme Rada.

The Party of Regions received the biggest number of seats — 186 of the
total 450 seats — in the March 26 parliamentary election. One of its
leaders, Yevgeny Kushnarev promised to press for a comprehensive approach

to this issue.

This policy will equally apply to all other languages spoken in Ukraine by
ethnic groups that make up compact communities in one or another territory,
Kushnarev said.

“Let the politicians drop illusions that the language problem can vanish
overnight with the aid of presidential decrees or government resolutions,”
he said.

Russian is the mother tongue or the instrument of everyday communications
for the majority of people living in the industrially advanced eastern
Luganks and Donetsk regions, the southeast Dnepropetrovsk and Zaporozhye
regions, and in the autonomous Republic of the Crimea.

It is also very broadly used in Ukraine’s second largest city of Kharkov and
in the major port city of Odessa and the adjacent area. A large number of
people in the capital Kiev are Russian-speaking, too.

The population in the traditionalist agrarian central, northwest and western
parts of the country, which offered strong support to the “orange
 revolution” at the end of 2004, is predominantly Ukrainian-speaking.
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
             Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
     Six Grassroots Environmentalists Win $125,000 Goldman Environmental Prize
                World’s largest prize honoring grassroots environmentalists.

Goldman Environmental Prize, San Francisco, California, April 24, 2006

SAN FRANCISCO – A Vietnam veteran fighting Pentagon plans to incinerate
chemical weapons stockpiles, a man who tipped the United Nations to illegal
logging in war-torn Liberia and the person behind the creation of the
world’s largest area of protected tropical rainforest are among the winners of

this year’s prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize.

“These six winners are among the most important people you have not heard of
before,” said Goldman Prize founder Richard N. Goldman. “All of them have
fought, often alone and at great personal risk, to protect the environment
in their home countries. Their incredible achievements are an inspiration to
all of us.”

The $125,000 Goldman Environmental Prize, now in its 17th year, is awarded
annually to six grassroots environmental heroes and is the largest award of
its kind in the world. The winners will be awarded the prize at an
invitation-only ceremony tonight (Monday, April 24, 2006) at 5 p.m. at the
San Francisco Opera House.

  Sustainable Development, Threat to Internationally Recognized Wetlands

Olya Melen, 26, is a firebrand attorney who used legal channels to
temporarily halt construction of a massive canal that would have cut through
the heart of the Danube Delta, one of the world’s most valuable wetlands.
For her efforts, she was denounced by the notoriously corrupt and lawless
pre-Orange Revolution government.

On the coast of the Black Sea, the Danube Delta is a maze of lakes and
rivers covering over 1 million acres in Romania and Ukraine. It contains the
largest reed beds in the world and abundant wildlife. It was designated as a
Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention and as a
UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve.

In 2004, without public notice and in violation of international and
national environmental laws, the Ukrainian government began dredging and
shoring up narrow and shallow sections of a 106-mile delta waterway to
create a canal that would allow large vessels to travel directly between the
Danube River and the Black Sea.

The organization where Melen was working, Environment-People-Law (EPL),
learned about the project and immediately filed lawsuits to prevent
construction. Melen took the lead on the case despite having no previous
courtroom experience.

“I became an environmentalist accidentally,” she says, in retrospect.
Determination in the Face of Corruption

In her first-ever court case, Melen opposed a team of government lawyers
seeking to end the protected status of rivers and ponds in the Danube
Biosphere Reserve. Over the next few years, government lawyers and ministers
used scare tactics against her and her clients and she was publicly accused
of being a traitor and a Romanian spy.

Undeterred, Melen broadened her strategy. Aware that Ukraine was bound by
numerous international conventions, EPL filed complaints with the Aarhus and
Espoo conventions to force the Ukrainian government to justify its canal
plans at a time when it was seeking acceptance to the European Union.

In her first significant victory, Melen proved that the Environmental Impact
Assessment (EIA) of the canal, which had been approved by the Minister of
Environment, was inadequate. The judge ruled that the canal development
flouted environmental laws and could adversely affect the Danube Delta’s

“I was always optimistic about our chances and never thought about defeat,”
Melen says. “I kept repeating the phrase ‘Nothing is impossible.'”

In spite of international pressure, the Ukrainian government, under the
former President Leonid Kuchma, refused to stop the first phase of canal
construction, arguing that it was needed to boost the local economy. The
first phase has now been completed.

But Melen’s high-profile challenge played a pivotal role in prompting the
new government that swept into office after the Orange Revolution to
temporarily halt additional construction. In August 2005, the new Minister
for the Environment rejected plans for the second phase of the proposed

However, the Danube Delta is still under threat. President Viktor Yushchenko
has publicly voiced his support for the completion of the Danube-Black Sea
Canal. Melen and her colleagues are poised to use all legal means to
continue to protect the most sensitive areas of the UNESCO Biosphere
Reserve.                                    -30-

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
                  Russia Expert Returns from Moscow to Washington

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP)
Washington, D.C., Monday, April 17, 2006

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is pleased to announce that
Andrew Kuchins is returning as Director of the Russian and Eurasian Program
and Senior Associate. Kuchins held this position from 2000 to 2003 and since
then has spent almost three years as Director of the Carnegie Moscow Center.

“Andy comes back to Washington after a significant and turbulent period in
Russia’s domestic politics,” said Jessica Mathews, president of the Carnegie
Endowment. “Andy’s extensive work at the Carnegie Moscow Center helped to
cultivate his insight into these politics and Russia’s foreign policy and we
look forward to benefiting from his expertise as Director of the Russian and
Eurasian Program.”

As Senior Associate and Director, Kuchins will focus on the increasingly
complex U.S.-Russian relationship, the burgeoning ties between Russia and
China, and the numerous foreign policy challenges facing these world powers.

Due to his recent experience in both the U.S. and Russia, Kuchins is able to
provide an insider’s perspective on the volatile world of Washington-Moscow
diplomacy. With offices in both capitols, the Carnegie Endowment is uniquely
situated to bridge the gap between these vital policy-making communities.

Previously, Kuchins served as associate director of the Center for
International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University, as a senior
program officer at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and as
executive director of the Berkeley-Stanford Program on Soviet and
Post-Soviet Studies.

Kuchins has made countless media appearances and is widely published in
newspapers and academic journals. He is a graduate of Amherst College and
Johns Hopkins SAIS.  He is the author of Russia After the Fall (Carnegie,
2002) and serves on the editorial board of the journal Demokratizatsiya.

CONTACT: Jennifer Linker,
For more information about Carnegie’s Russian and Eurasian Program,
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
                             Kyiv, Ukraine: June 1 – 4, 2006

Basil P. Tarasko, District Administrator of the Little Leagues in Ukraine
Scout – San Diego Padres Major League Baseball Club
Coach – National Baseball Teams of Ukraine
Trip #42 to Ukraine, May 25 – June 11, 2006
Bayside, New York, May 2006

BAYSIDE – The Ukraine Little League will host its Seventh Annual Ukraine
Little League Country Championship for children ages 11 – 12 on June 1-4,
2006 in Kyiv. In addition, the Ukraine LL will host its Third Annual series
of exhibition games played by teams from orphanages participating in the LL

All LL teams officially chartered with Williamsport, PA, USA and who have
met all the necessary requirements for participation are cordially invited
to compete for the Ukraine LL title. Our winner then advances to Kutno,
Poland to represent Ukraine at the European LL Championship. Winner in

Kutno will then travel to the United States to represent Europe at the World
Series with all expenses paid. Lets hope for a winner.

All Little League teams from chartered orphanages are also invited to play
exhibition games during the tournament.

                                 FUNDS ARE NEEDED
The Ukraine LL will raise funds to cover all the expenses for the children
from the orphanages: travel, housing, meals, souvenirs and a cultural

The Ukraine LL will raise funds to cover the following costs for the teams
from regular schools: meals, souvenirs, and a cultural program. The teams
from regular schools are responsible for their travel and housing costs.

CARE TO HELP? Here is how you can help in 2006.

Make a donation to help cover some of these costs. You will receive

photos of the smiling children that you are helping, and an Ukraine
baseball t —  shirt, of course. Just need your size.

For more information, suggestions and offers of help, please contact me.
Thank you for helping me help the children of Ukraine.

Basil (Vasyl) Tarasko, District Administrator of the Little

Leagues in Ukraine (1995)
Scout – San Diego Padres Major League Baseball Club
Coach – National Baseball Teams of Ukraine
36 – 46 212th St., Bayside, NY 11361 USA
Cell: 718-415-7821; E-mail:

Ukraine Little League (LL) Baseball – Orphanage Project 2003 and beyond.
In partnership with: The Children of Chornobyl Relief & Development

Fund (CCRF) Short Hills, NJ, USA; The Help Us Help the Children Fund
(HUHTC) Kyiv, Ukraine & Peace Corps – Ukraine.        -30-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
            Anthology introduces new voices and a century of hidden stories

BOOK LAUNCH: Kobzar’s Children, A Century of Untold Ukrainian Stories
Vancouver, BC and Richmond, BC, Canada, Fri & Sat, June 2 & 3, 2006

Friday. June 2, 7:00 pm: St. Mary’s Ukrainian Catholic Centre
3150 Ash St. (off 16th , between Cambie and Oak): Vancouver, BC
Saturday. June 3, 12:30 pm: Ukrainian Community Society of Ivan Franko
5311 Francis Road (between Railway and No. 2 Road); Richmond, BC

KOBZAR’S CHILDREN, From the cover:

The kobzars were the blind minstrels of Ukraine, who memorized the epic
poems and stories of 100 generations. Traveling around the country, they
stopped in towns and villages along the way, where they told their tales and
were welcomed by all. Under Stalin’s regime, the kobzars were murdered. As
the storytellers of Ukraine died, so too did their stories.

Kobzar’s Children is an anthology of short historical fiction, memoirs, and
poems written about the Ukrainian immigrant experience. The stories span a
century of history; and they contain stories of internment, homesteading,
famine, displacement, concentration camps, and this new century’s Orange

Edited by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, /Kobzar’s Childre/n is more than a
collection; it is a moving social document that honors the tradition of the
kobzars and revives memories once deliberately forgotten.

MARSHA FORCHUK SKRYPUCH is the author of many books for children

and young adults, including Silver Threads, Enough, The Hunger, and Hope’s
War. Her novel about the Armenian Genocide, Nobody’s Child, was nominated
for the Red Maple Award, the Alberta Rocky Mountain Book Award, and the
B. C. Stellar Award; and it was listed by Resource Links as a Best Book.

Marsha has been honored by the World Federation of Ukrainian Women’s
Organizations as a Canadian Ukrainian Woman of Influence. The stories and
poems in Kobzar’s Children were written by a diverse group of people who
first responded to Skrypuch’s publications and eventually came to share
their own stories via email.

The stories, by writers from across Canada, are arranged in chronological
order and include:

* A Home of Her Own: A true story set in the early 1900s by the late Olga
Prychodko, about her mother’s misconceptions about immigrating to the wilds
of Canada’s west.
* Andriy’s Break: An internment story set during WWI and inspired by true
events written by well-known story collector, Danny Evanishen.
* It’s Me, Tatia: An old woman reflects on lost love and fateful decisions as
she remembers a summer long past, during the Winnipeg Strike. Written by
award-winning short fiction writer, Brenda Hasiuk.
* The Rings: *Inspired by true events, a story of one child’s escape from
the 1930s Ukrainian Famine, written by Marsha Skrypuch.
* The Red Boots*: A slice of prairie homestead life in the late 1930s and
based on an incident in her own father’s childhood, this is the first
children’s story that Marsha Skrypuch ever wrote.
* A Song for Kataryna: How could someone just disappear? Well known
storyteller Linda Mikolayenko peels back the horrific details of her
immigrant aunt’s disappearance layer by layer in this beautifully written
* Auschwitz: Many Circles of Hell: Stefan Petelycky’s memoir of his
imprisonment in the notorious Auschwitz concentration camp during WWII
because of his involvement in OUN.
* A Bar of Chocolate: This humorous tale by first-time author, Natalia
Buchok is about how her own father’s quest for a bar of chocolate in a post
WWII DP camp leads him to dress as a girl and go on a date with an American
* Bargain: A humorous story with wry character sketches, set in the
mid-1950s in the Warwaruk’s meat market and general store in Glenavon SK.
Written by award winning author, Larry Warwaruk.
* Candy’s Revenge: Set on a prairie farm in the 1950s, this story is about a
city girl visiting her country cousin and how an innocent prank had
unexpected consequences. Written by first-time author, Cornelia Bilinsky.
* Changing Graves:  A story based on a real incident in the 1970s about how
a bizarre old-world request that a loved one’s grave be moved closer to
other relatives, ends in black comedy. Written by well-known children’s
entertainer, writer and poet, Sonja Dunn.
* Christmas Missed: The story of a Canadian teen who travels to Ukraine
during the Orange Revolution and how missing Christmas with his own family
ends up teaching them all about the real meaning of family. Written by
first-time author Paulette MacQuarrie.

In addition to the above twelve stories, the anthology contains a number of
poems, including one written by Kim Pawliw, when she was 15. It is a tribute
to her grandmother, who was interned as a child in Spirit Lake Internment
Camp during WWI. Kim wrote the poem in French and translated it herself into
English. Both versions are included.

There are also poems by Sonja Dunn and Linda Mikolayenko. The anthology
includes photographs supplied by the contributors and by people from across
the country.

Contributors reside across the country, so events introducing “Kobzar’s
Children” will be occurring on an ongoing basis in a variety of locations
with various of the contributors. The first launch will be held in Vancouver
with Marsha and British Columbia’s three contributing authors – Danny
Evanishen, Stefan Petelycky and Paulette MacQuarrie.

“Kobzar’s Children: A Century of Ukrainian Stories” is published by
Fitzhenry & Whiteside (Markham, Ontario) ISBN 1-55041-954-4.
For more information, please contact: Marsha Skrypuch 519-753-5063; Paulette MacQuarrie 604-942-4317

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
17.                    PAVED WITH GOOD INTENTIONS
              A crusading economist argues that utopian foreign aid plans
                                 do little to ease world poverty.

Book Reviewed by David Ignatius, The Washington Post
Washington, D.C., Sunday, May 21, 2006; Page Book World 06

Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest
Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good
By William Easterly
Penguin Press. 436 pp. $27.95

This is the season for critiques of global misadventures, and William
Easterly has written a valuable one. His target in his puckishly titled “The
White Man’s Burden” is the spirit of benign meddling that lies behind
foreign aid, foreign military interventions and such do-gooder institutions
as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the
United Nations.

In his account, such efforts are fatally contaminated by what the
philosopher Karl Popper called “utopian social engineering.” Easterly’s list
of well-meaning villains stretches from the economist Jeffrey Sachs to the
rock singer and charity impresario Bono.

His analysis is depressing but quite readable — thanks largely to his skill
in giving lively names and conceptual handles to his explanations for why
the West’s charitable works in fact accomplish “so much ill and so little
good.” The do-gooders’ fundamental flaw, he argues, is that they are
“Planners,” who seek to impose solutions from the top down, rather than
“Searchers,” who adapt to the real life and culture of foreign lands from
the bottom up.

The Planners believe in “the Big Push” — an infusion of foreign aid and
economic advice that will lift poor countries past the poverty trap and into
prosperity. But the Planners are almost always wrong, Easterly contends,
because they ignore the cultural, political and bureaucratic obstacles that
impede the delivery of real assistance (as opposed to plans for such
assistance) to the world’s poor. “The right plan is to have no plan,” he
asserts, in an economist’s version of a Zen koan.

Think of Easterly as a kind of anti-Thomas L. Friedman. His dyspeptic
view of globalization contrasts with the optimism of the New York Times
columnist, but he has written his broadside in a brisk, Friedman-esque
style of aphorisms, anecdotes and witty headings.

Some of his section and chapter titles convey the breezy tone in which he
delivers his gloomy analysis: “Why Planners Cannot Bring Prosperity”;
“The Legend of the Big Push”; “The Rich Have Markets, the Poor Have

Scattered throughout the book are upbeat “Snapshots” of poor Africans and
Asians whom Easterly, now an economics professor at New York University,
met on his travels during more than 16 years spent working as a World Bank
development economist; he also offers portraits of the “Searchers” who are
helping the developing world.

I confess that I occasionally began to find all the aphorisms and snapshots
annoying; there actually is such a thing as a book about development
economics that is too readable. And I would have been happier if his sainted
Searchers had been subject to a bit more of the same skepticism that
Easterly applies to the odious Planners. Not to diminish the “social
entrepreneurs” whom Easterly celebrates, but their well-publicized efforts
are a bit of a racket too.

I’ve met with and marveled at some of the same African and Asian
innovators Easterly applauds, but it is a tad utopian to think that these
little examples will add up to big changes, absent the fundamental reforms

for which Easterly has such scorn.

For instance, he praises the success of an NGO called Population Services
International in finding a way for poor Africans to make a profit
distributing the bed nets that can prevent malaria. But surely the challenge
for development economists is to find ways to replicate such efforts on a
larger scale, which involves the dreaded “P” word.

What makes this book valuable is its devastating detail. Easterly, the
author of an influential previous book, The Elusive Quest for Growth , has
assembled overwhelming evidence of how little has been accomplished with
the hundreds of billions of dollars in aid money, the thousands of advisory
missions, the millions of reports and studies.

Rebutting the “Big Push” idea favored by World Bank planners, he notes that
22 African countries spent $342 billion on public investment from 1970 to
1994 and received another $187 billion in foreign aid over that period. But
the productivity gain from all this investment was zero. As an example of
the Planners’ folly, he cites the $5 billion spent since 1979 on a publicly
owned steel mill in Nigeria that has yet to produce any steel.

Easterly’s critique of the World Bank and the IMF is persuasive. He argues
that the IMF’s structural-adjustment lending — in which indebted countries
get more money on the condition that they agree to Planners’ free-market
reforms — simply hasn’t worked. One big reason is that the IMF, like the
World Bank, is always fudging its failures, finding excuses for why past aid
and advice haven’t worked, discovering reasons to pump in even more

Indeed, Easterly finds a freakish correlation between IMF interventions and
failed states. He notes the role corruption has played in distorting foreign
aid and the growing insistence of aid donors on “good governance.” But he
cautions that attempting to change political cultures from afar often
produces a show of good governance — like the 2,400 reports Tanzania must
produce every year for aid donors — rather than the real thing. The
absurdity of this hortatory culture emerges in his observation that among
the 185 actions recommended by the 2002 Johannesburg Summit on
Sustainable Development was “efficient use of cow dung.”

With all of Easterly’s aid-bashing, one might imagine that he is a
conservative promoter of market solutions. But some of his most powerful
criticism is reserved for the Planners who advocated “shock therapy”
free-market reforms in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.

Free markets can’t be imposed from outside, he insists, citing the example
of the inefficient Soviet-era plants that survived their entry into the
market era via their communist bosses’ genius for bartering and cronyism.
“The Soviet-trained plant managers at the bottom outwitted the shock
therapists at the top,” he writes.

He finds a similar failure of free-market diktats in Latin America. The best
era for Latin American growth was 1950 to 1980, the heyday of state
intervention, while growth slowed in the market-reform years of the 1990s.
As a result, Easterly argues, “the backlash against free markets is
unfortunately now gaining strength in Latin America.”

So what works? Easterly’s argument is that if it’s imposed from the outside,
almost nothing works — in either the economic or political sphere. It’s no
accident, he argues, that the great East Asian economic success stories of
recent decades — Japan, China, Taiwan, South Korea, Thailand — all took
place in countries that were never successfully colonized by the West.

These nations evolved their own cultures, rules and disciplines and built an
indigenous foundation for rapid economic growth. The region’s laggard is
the one nation that was colonized: the Philippines.

Easterly’s dissection of the interventionist impulse of the Planners is
powerful. His enthusiasm for the bottom-up successes of the Searchers is
less so. He’s looking hard for something encouraging to say, but it’s a
measure of the potency of his corrosive analysis that the good news isn’t
very convincing. ·                          -30-
David Ignatius is a syndicated columnist for The Washington Post.
His new spy novel will be published next spring.
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