[Marxism] Key Supporters Driving Yuschenko's Bandwagon
Ernie & Jess
mackenzie.tate at sympatico.ca
Wed Dec 1 11:55:29 MST 2004
Information on some of the forces behind Yuschenko. I notice there is
no mention of George Soros.
Key supporters driving Yuschenko's bandwagon
Nick Paton Walsh in Kiev
Tuesday November 30, 2004
In Kiev, it appears that oranges are the only fruit. The town centre is
awash with the campaign colours - flags, overalls, ribbons - of the
opposition leader, Viktor Yushchenko, supplied by wealthy supporters.
A vast infrastructure, also bringing in food kitchens and massive TV
screens, has been created in part by sympathetic businessmen and local
officials, but also by a few key wealthy backers to Mr Yuschenko.
Analysts portray this handful of millionaires - or billionaires - as
Firebrand deputy Yulia Tymoshenko has the most to lose if the
pro-Russian prime minister, Viktor Yanukovich, comes to power. Wanted
for extradition by Russia for allegedly bribing officials eight years
ago, she allegedly made her fortune in the sell-off of various state gas
She denies all wrongdoing, decrying the charges as political, being
lodged just before the election.
Mikhail Pogrebinsky, a government adviser turned analyst, said: "She
runs the radical element of the opposition who will take power any way."
He said MP David Zhvania, accounts of whose wealth vary, was another key
The opposition plays down a split between Ms Tymoshenko's radical
rhetoric and Mr Yushchenko's calm oratory. "There are differences," said
a key Yushchenko backer, "but they are not that strong."
A key moderate in the team is the wealthy MP Petro Poroshenko, a
confectionery giant and the co-owner of the main opposition TV Channel
5. A second-hand car salesman in the 1990s, he moved into the juice and
beer business and is now thought to be a key Yushchenko financier.
Alexei Pogorelov, editor-in-chief of the business journal Kompanion,
said: "I have heard that ... he is progressive and listens to criticism.
Unlike some other top managers in Ukraine, he won't throw an ashtray or
mobile phone at a member of staff who mentions some inadequacies."
MP Yevhen Chernovenko is another moderate, a soft drinks millionaire and
Mr Yuschenko's chief of security. A gruff yet warm man, he runs the
Orlan consortium. The government has claimed he has an Israeli passport
- forbidden under Ukrainian law - although he denies it.
"Poroshenko is the calm and considered one, whose real thoughts are hard
to read", said Mr Pogorelov, "but Chernovenko is more emotional and can
occasionally make an outburst." He said both men sought easier taxation
and regulation for business to ease its development.
Mr Pogrebinsky said the key supporters were "a business clan that seeks
access to power and administrative resources."
He claimed that some opposition leaders "want to close the criminal
cases open against them that involve deceiving the state of millions".
Yet Yushchenko supporters portray his backers as reformist businessmen,
keen on seeing the middle class develop and stripping away the
monopolies and tax concessions for big business that benefit the natural
resource giants behind Mr Yanukovich.
"Nobody who has been in the business climate of Ukraine over the past
decade can say they are totally clean," said Markian Bilynskyj, an
Guardian Unlimited © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2004
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