17 June 2010

Chasing the wrong man.

Ukraine is an unusual country. It does not function like a typical western European country…and WHY should it?. It’s situated in Eastern Europe.
Why should Ukraine have to conform to the so called ‘norms’ of any western European so called democracies?
The local English language newspaper in Ukraine- Kyiv Post - appears to have declared a crusade against the Head of the State Security Service in Ukraine (SBU). The current head being Mr Valeriy Khoroshkovsky a well known successful businessman in Ukraine.
Why are they doing this?
I suspect mainly because Valeriy Khoroshkovsky is a very rich and successful businessman who has been appointed as the head of the country’s state security service.
Moreover, he is also the majority shareholder in a company that controls some of the popular TV channels in Ukraine.
Prior to his appointment as Head of the SBU, Valeriy Khoroshkovsky was also Deputy Head of the SBU, also a deputy head of the national security and defense council and he has held many other government posts in the past including Head of the State Customs Service, and Minister of Economy plus others during the past ten years.

The Kyiv Post and some other media representatives claim that being head of the SBU and also being a major shareholder in a company that controls some of the leading TV channels is unacceptable to them.

I would like to pose my first question….”why?”
I can only assume that it’s because it’s ‘strange’ to them that the head of the government security service is also a successful multimillionaire businessman.
God forbid, can you imagine the Head of the British MI5 or MI6 being a multimillionaire successful businessman.

I therefore present my second question to them….”Why is it considered wrong for the Head of a State Security Service to also be a successful business person?”

I could go on with this, but the one fact that is encouraging about all of this is that Valeriy Khoroshkovsky is probably one of the ONLY people in the Ukraine government structure who is HONEST. He is probably one of the very few who can actually be trusted to NEVER be corrupted and he would certainly never need to take a bribe from anyone.
Why would he, he is already a multimillionaire.

I find it amusing that a quote from a recent article in the Kyiv Post (see below) claims that the Head of the Paris based media watchdog – ‘Reporters without Borders’ says
“it is “an unacceptable situation” when the chief of the nation’s state spy agency doubles as the owner of the country’s largest television group.”

Well please tell me WHY?.....Is it because those media people in the so called ‘west’ find it hard to understand that Ukraine does NOT have to conform to any rules or procedures or even any cultural norms adopted by EU countries about WHO should be allowed to be the Head of the State Security Service. Who are we (so called people from the west) to be determining WHO should or should not be the Head of the State Security Service in Ukraine. What right do any of us have to determine this?

Moreover, it slightly irritates me that these ‘media people’ are more interested in pursuing someone who is actually trying to do a good job for the country. Valeriy Khoroshkovsky could easily go back to being a ‘Businessman’ in Ukraine, but he is driven by the need to serve his country as best he can.

For balance, I reproduce below a recent article as reported in the Kyiv Post:

Khoroshkovsky has his say on conflicts
17 June 20910 - Peter Byrne – Staff Writer – Kyiv Post
Security Service of Ukraine chief Valery Khoroshkovsky is at the center of a storm of accusations that he is interfering with press freedoms.

Khoroshkovsky is also criticized for his numerous conflicts of interest as a top law enforcement official who owns the country’s largest media group and who serves on the council that appoints judges.

Khoroshkovsky appeared on Savik Shuster’s weekly political talk show on Ukraina TV channel on June 11, and then gave an interview to Ukrayinska Pravda’s online newspaper. Both the show and interview were dedicated to the issue of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly.

Executives of two small stations, Channel 5 and TVi, have accused Khoroshkovsky of using his position as chief of the SBU, as the Security Service of Ukraine is known, and as a member of the High Council of Justice to pressure a court that on June 7 stripped these channels of broadcasting frequencies. The frequencies were awarded in a controversial January tender. The two channels said the move threatened their development and possibly even existence.

U.S. and European officials say they are monitoring the conflict closely, while Gilles Lordet, head of the Paris-based media watchdog Reporters Without Border, said on June 9 that it is “an unacceptable situation” when the chief of the nation’s state spy agency doubles as the owner of the country’s largest television group.

Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/politics/detail/70071/#ixzz0r8fSPNSv

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