Saturday, February 14, 2015

Ukraine and its national interest subverted by IMF, US and European Corporations

                          Ukrainian Land has always been the issue from Nazis to Neo Cons

Democracy and  Class Struggle welcomes Michael Hudson's highlighting of the Land Question in the Ukraine and recommend you visit the following video here before reading the report below :

We thought Angela Merkel was just a US stooge. Make no mistakes, she is. But there had to be other reasons behind her stubborn pro-Kiev Junta attitude. These have now begun to surface. Not in the German or Western media of course, but they are surfacing.

Here is a revealing quote from Birgit Bock-Luna, who heads the office of Niema Movassat, MP for the Left-wing opposition party Die Linke. Bock-Luna told Ria Novosti last week:

"The conflict in Ukraine is used to cover up a sale of farmlands in the interest of major corporations"

According to Global Research, “Ukraine's farmland production matches Texas in size (…), or about one-third of Europe’s arable land. Its rich dark soil is highly valued. Ideal for growing grain (…) Monsanto and other agribusiness giants intend exploiting Ukraine’s agricultural potential.”

Frau Bock-Luna is not shy of naming the protagonists of this latest land grab by the West, carried by their clients in Kiev with a cluster bombs bonanza and cannon fodder galore (what Ukrainian soldiers are, and have finally understood they are, in the eyes of their government): “German agricultural concerns – AGRARIUS AG, Germanagrar CEE GmbH, KTG Agrar SE, Agroton and Alfred C. Toepfer International (ADM) – seize land using leasing schemes and generous loans from German and global money lenders.”

How much are tens of thousands of deaths worth in financial terms? How many hectares of Ukrainian black earth do you get by shelling residential areas? 
The quotes below, also by Bock-Lula, illustrate all of this in detail:

Alfred C. Toepfer International was given a $60 million loan to buy an additional 50,000 hectares in Ukraine, alongside 50,000 it already owns (…) large areas of Ukraine's arable lands could be used to grow genetically modified crops, away from the watchful eye of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is EU's agricultural regulator.

The Ukraine Investment Climate Advisory Services Project, Germany's agricultural center Deutsche Agrarzentrum (DAZ), and the German Advisory Group on Economic Reforms in Ukraine are some of the projects that helped to negotiate land grabs with Ukrainian government officials, lawmakers said.

And guess what, explains Bock Lula: "The previous Ukrainian administration was opposed to further relaxation of agricultural laws, but this changed after the coup, with the help of the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development".

Last summer, Counterpunch wrote: “On July 28, the California-based Oakland Institute released a report revealing that the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), under terms of their $17 billion loan to Ukraine, would open that country to genetically-modified (GM) crops and genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) in agriculture.”
Of course Euromaidan started with Yanukovych's refusal to sign the EU association agreement. Could the cuddly EU association agreement, with its focus on favoring more student exchanges, possibly have anything remotely to do with it?
Here again is Counterpunch, quoting the Oakland Institute's findings
 Whereas Ukraine does not allow the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in agriculture, Article 404 of the EU agreement, which relates to agriculture, includes a clause that has generally gone unnoticed: it indicates, among other things, that both parties will cooperate to extend the use of bio-technologies. No doubt this provision meets the expectations of the agribusiness industry.

Now, that's a change! Maybe not what naive Maidan demonstrators and their Western media cheerleaders had in mind, but quite a change nonetheless.

Wasn't Euromaidan about getting rid of the oligarchs?
Bring on the world bank, agribusiness and GMO foods—then a failed puppet state, a Nazi revival, a bloody civil war—and Bob's your uncle.



Sharmini Peries at The Real News Network asks Hudson, “In a recent interview [by former State Department official James Carden] published in The National Interest magazine you said that most media covers Russia as if it is the greatest threat to Ukraine. History suggests that the IMF may be far more dangerous. What did you mean by that?”

Hudson responds, “Well, the terms on which the IMF make loans, first of all, are based on austerity. The terms require more austerity and a withdrawal of all public subsidies. Now, you have the Ukrainian population absolutely devastated. The only result of the IMF’s austerity program, the conditions that it’s laying down for making loans to Ukraine, is you have to repay the debts, but you don’t have the ability to repay the debts. So there’s only one way to do it, and that’s the way that we’ve told Greece and other countries to do. You have to begin selling off whatever you have left of your public domain. Or you have to have your leading oligarchs take on partnerships with American or European investors so that they can buy out into the monopolies in the Ukraine.

“So essentially, the IMF has a two stage, one-two punch. Punch number one is: ‘Here’s the money, now you have to repay us after cutting back public spending and causing a depression.’ The two punch is: ‘Oh, you can’t pay us? I’m sorry that all of our projections are wrong.’

“And the IMF has been wrong on Ukraine year after year. Almost as much as it’s been wrong on Ireland and on Greece. So now the real problem is: what is Ukraine going to have to sell to pay off the foreign debts that it gets for having waged a war that’s devastated an economy. Well, the main things that foreign investors want are Ukrainian farmland. Monsanto has been buying into Ukraine, but Ukraine has a law against alienating its farmland and agricultural land to foreigners. As a matter of fact, its law is very much the same as what the Financial Times reports that Australia is wanting to do today: to block Chinese and American purchases of farmlands. The IMF’s position is: ‘You have to dismantle public regulations against foreign investment and you have to dismantle consumer production and environmental production regulations.’

“In other words, what is in store for Ukraine is a neoliberal policy that’s guaranteed to actually make it even worse. And in that sense, finance is war. Finance is a new kind of warfare using finance and forced selloffs in the IMF as a new kind of battlefield. I’m not sure how all of this is going to really help Ukraine, and it promises to lead to yet another crisis down the road, very, very quickly.”


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