Friday, March 7, 2014

What and Who Is "New Citizen" and "Center UA"?

These are the outfits Omidyar Network has funded to the tune of $1.105 million over two years, not a huge amount by any means, but enough, it seems, to have an effect. And that's what any billionaire philanthropist/investor wants his or her money to do. Effect the outcome of events. Cause events if need be.

Over the last several days, I've been looking into "New Citizen" and "Center UA," the two outfits Omidyar admits to funding in Ukraine. Strangely, the admissions are somewhat incomplete. For example in announcing the grant/investment in "New Citizen (Center UA)" in 2011, Omidyar omits to mention that "New Citizen" is a project of "Center UA", and in clarifying their funding in Ukraine, they fail to mention, again, that "New Citizen" is a project of "Center UA," and they further muddy the waters by claiming their investments were in "Center UA," not mentioning "New Citizen" at all -- except in the title. An observer might suspect deliberate obfuscation. A lawyer would say, "It's in the title, and the link within goes to "New Citizen," and besides, everything -- except that $770,000 grant-or-investment -- was already disclosed long ago. There is no news here..."

At any rate, I've been trying to find out what this "New Citizen" is and what "Center UA" is supposed to be.

New Citizen's website is in Ukrainian only, and basically what they say they are is an umbrella "service" organization for 58 other organizations, including "Center UA," although a project of "Center UA," whose website is in English, and whose website appears to be down at the moment...

Of the New Citizen members that have functioning websites, however, we may begin at the beginning and go through the list:

Mama-86 is a water resources management NGO (interesting in and of itself) which posted a communiqué in November from Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum condemning the Ukrainian Government's decision not to sign and implement the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU and demands the resignation of the Cabinet of Ministers and the immediate signing of the Agreement. (By whom?) Interesting, too, is that Mama-86 says it is a member of

Ukrainian National Platform Civil Society Forum of the Eastern Partnership, which brings together 186 NGOs from all over Ukraine...
Well now, first I've heard of that, and look, another umbrella! As I mentioned in discussing this exploration, you go down so many diversionary corridors and blind alleys it isn't even funny.

The chair of the coordinating council of Mama-86 is Anna Golubovska-Onisimova, who has apparently very strong EU connections.

An environmental NGO, focused on integrating and managing Ukrainian water resources with those of the EU could hardly be called pernicious, could it? Well, it's hard to say, isn't it? One can't know from the looks of things.
Internews UA is the next member with a working website. Its mission as stated on its home page is:
The promotion of European values ​​in Ukraine
through the development of successful media
So that's good. Only what does it mean, exactly? Media promotion of "European values"  could be anything, I guess, but the upshot would be propaganda, would it not? And what is this apparent assumption that Ukraine's "values" aren't those of Europe? Interesting.

At any rate, they sponsor a lot of projects and programs to inject -- shall we say -- these values of which they speak into Ukrainian consciousness and to promote them through "successful media." They will be sponsoring fora shortly to discuss and promote EU connections.


EU invites you talk about the relationship of the EU-Ukraine in Ivano-Frankivsk
March 12 at 10.00 in Ivano-Frankivsk, a workshop on "EU-Ukraine relations: where next?". EU Delegation to Ukraine invites experts on European integration, international affairs experts and analysts, representatives of local governments and the business community, civil society activists and journalists to discuss the most pressing issues on the agenda of relations between Ukraine and the EU. more
Training on Europe - invite journalists to participate
March 14-15 in Kiev held a training on "Discovering Europe". Invited journalists from Eastern and Southern regions of Ukraine. Deadline for applications - 10 March. more
Exclusive interview with the chief editor of the site MediaPort Zurab Alasaniya
Journalists Project EaP Media Freedom Watch an exclusive interview taken in Kharkov editor of the most popular online news portal MediaPort Zurab Alasaniya on freedom of speech in Kharkiv. more

Just a sampling of what they offer and what they do.

Next we find something called "Democratic Initiatives Ilko Kucheriv" headed by Irina Bekeshkina.  A quick glance at their home page shows item after item of anti-Russian propaganda, not exactly the promotion of "democratic initiatives," but I guess it is necessary to denounce Russia before any "democracy" can be initiated in Ukraine. Or anywhere else for that matter. They also have many projects, which I didn't investigate for the simple reason that their homepage was cluttered up with so much overt anti-Russian speakers and propaganda. It's sort of the counterpoint, I guess, to Internews's pro-EU stuff. Hand in glove as it were.


Up next is something called "The Ukrainian Center for Independent Political Research" which is also filled with anti-Russian propaganda. Huh. Practically everything they have on their homepage is about protesting in the Maidan, getting rid of Yanukovych, and denouncing Russia. There seems to be a theme here.

The center is headed by Yulia Tyshchenko and Kostyantyn Mykhailychenko. The link goes to a email post by said Kostyantyn Mykhailychenko which is interesting in and of itself for it describes a book published in 2009 called "EU's Eastern Partnership: Additional Possibilities  for European Integration of Ukraine." How charming. But it doesn't stop with Ukraine. Included in the EU's "Eastern Partnership" are Ukraine, Georgia, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Moldova. The book, it seems, was being distributed free online within Ukraine by request to the Center, printed copies available by application. Looks like there might be long term plans to "coordinate" all of these Eastern lands bordering Mother Russia with EU. Perhaps Mr Putin in the Kremlin isn't quite so "paranoid" and "desperate" as he is made out to be by the Western media.... but then again, he's Russian...

Then we have Mvarta, the Ukrainian Youth Guard. It appears to be organized as a political pressure and lobbying group composed of young voters advocating the interests of children and youth throughout Ukraine and holding politicians accountable for fulfilling their promises to youth. How refreshing. Mvarta is headed by Evgenya Malykh. Interesting...
Next is Debate Academy. They announced a workshop last October that seems pretty straightforward:

Bring out the debaters

We invite students to participate in a seminar Debate skills, which will take place on 23-24 November 2013. in Uzhgorod.

Taking part in the workshop you will:
- Learn how to shape the debate of national decision-making turned into teaching methods ";
- Learn to use the information to confirm the opinion;
- To improve their public speaking skills;
- Learn the basics of Public Speaking;
- Find new friends and meet old;
- Learn what a "Debate adrenaline";
- Try their hand at debating!

Who we are waiting for:
Young people from all over Ukraine who want to improve their skills in reasoned debate.

participation in the event is free. Participants are provided with books, textbook and handouts. Nonresident reimbursed travel expenses and accommodation provided.

How to register:
to take part in training must complete the online form ( and qualify. Applications will be accepted up to 18.00 hrs. November 18, 2013.

For more information, please refer to branch of "Debate Academy» For additional questions, please call: 0504112042 Nazar, Vladimir 0637371611.

Organizer: branch of "Debate Academy" in partnership with the Foundation for information and education initiatives "Development" and Transcarpathian community centers with the financial support of the "Roma of Ukraine" MF "Renaissance".

Of course there are more organizations to track down thanks to this announcement. Dimitry Sinchenko is the go-to guy for the Debate Academy, and he has quite an interesting website which I don't have time to explore in detail, but he seems pretty deeply involved in the overthrow of the Yanukovych government and is a Deputy Head of the UDAR Vitali Klichko party.

We have something called "Elite State" the function of which is not entirely clear, but from what little I could glean from their webpage (which is considered malware, so beware) they are primarily involved in coordinating information on behalf of graduates of the National Academy of Public Administration of Ukraine. And offering some interesting "psychological games" of power. The head is Olga Piddubchak who says of herself: (translated from the Ukrainian via the Google Machine)
President of NGO "elite of the state" Olga Piddubchak - bright and outstanding personality.
From a genetic nature and space volitional qualities as born in the Year of the Tiger, Eastern horoscope.
Honors social intelligence, personal charisma and sunshine of the Golden Fleece, for the Western zodiac Aries horoscope.
It has a strong intuition and inclination to understand the unconscious, because it is hazel - for the Celts, Druids horoscope. And Mrs. Olga was born in Zhytomyr ancient land where long live the western Scythians, the Celts, who worshiped the sun god - Cola and Water Goddess - Dan.
Moreover, on this fertile land, as the philology and toponymy, the village of Ray. Perhaps not everyone knows, but it was the name of the mother of the Supreme God Zeus.
So, given this strong earth girl who graduated with a silver medal and school honors - Zaporozhye Institute for Municipal and Public Administration majoring in "administrative management".
She later graduated from the master's and graduate of the National Academy of Public Administration under the President of Ukraine in Kiev, specialty "State Government". He has practical experience in the law drafting. Years of public service began in 1999.
Ms. Olga has several publications in scientific journals and actively participates in conferences of national and international levels.
Research interests: political-socialization of young executives in terms of administrative reform in Ukraine.
By the ideology of Unique Ukrainian Spiritual Democracy, which combines the irrational (soul), good (democracy) and the historical experience of successful ancestors ancient Ukrainian state.
The nature of Nordic and emotional, the sanguine and choleric limits. That does not prevent him more than three years to manage non-governmental organization that brings together successful and patriotic representatives of state agencies, local governments and scientists.
Combines in his person the lively creative logical and intuitive approaches to solving management problems.
Adheres to the principles of ecological social relations of gender harmony and positive future programming.
Favorite mythological images Olga - First Princess Country Artiniyi, silver Vovkynya in Diamond Crown.
The immediate objective: to create an effective administrative system under which happen gradually replacing the moral quality of obsolete and structurally qualified personnel on the system, positive and patriotic staff with appropriate education in the field of public administration. The first step in this direction - to improve the system of transparent competitive selection to public service.
Projects is working now: Legislative theater Ball Masters and Ministers.
Membership in civic councils: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Kyiv City State Administration.
Note: NGO "elite of the state" was registered 08/08/08, has representation in 19 regions of Ukraine and 13 community councils in ministries, departments and regional administrations.
At least from that, I kind of like her! Oh well...
We move on to: "Ukrainian Strategy" headed by Anatoliy Pinchuk (this site is also considered malware). I won't link to this one because it is firing off warning after warning, so better not. At any rate, it appears to be a very pro-active neo-liberal political and economic endeavor. Anatoliy Pinchuk is very closely tied into the international neo-liberal think tank community.
Following "Ukrainian Strategy" is the social activist Alexey Pogorelov who is CEO of the Ukrainian Association of Press Publishers which is an umbrella organization for 114 independent media outlets and which seemed to be aligned with those determined to overthrow Yanukovych. More malware, so I won't link.

Thence to: "Community" Foundation,  a Eurocentric outfit headed by Taras Peter, a media consultant to various government and non-government organizations.

Next we have "Center UA" the umbrella under which "New Citizen" is formed. Center UA is headed by Oleh Rybachuk, who is considered quite notorious by some.  Here's Mark Ames' description:

When the revolution came to Ukraine, neo-fascists played a front-center role in overthrowing the country’s president. But the real political power rests with Ukraine’s pro-western neoliberals. Political figures like Oleh Rybachuk, long a favorite of the State Department, DC neoconsEU, and NATO—and the right-hand man to Orange Revolution leader Viktor Yushchenko.
Last December, the Financial Times wrote that Rybachuk’s “New Citizen” NGO campaign “played a big role in getting the protest up and running.”
New Citizen, along with the rest of Rybachuk’s interlocking network of western-backed NGOs and campaigns— “Center UA” (also spelled “Centre UA”), “Chesno,” and “Stop Censorship” to name a few — grew their power by targeting pro-Yanukovych politicians with a well-coordinated anti-corruption campaign that built its strength in Ukraine’s regions, before massing in Kiev last autumn.
Rybachuk is widely considered to be the power behind the overthrow of Yanukovych, but he is also considered to be the tool of the EU and the US State Department. So are quite a few of the other individuals and organizations under the wing of Omidyar/"New Citizen"/USAID/NED.
Following "Center UA" is "Bukvoid" -- an online and print publishing outfit which seems pretty straightforward. It's headed by Sergey Rudenko, but not the Soviet General...
Next is the Independent Media Trade Union of Ukraine which boasts of more than 600 journalist members and affiliation with the International Federation of Journalists. It is headed by Ukrainian Media Personality Roman Skrypin (though their history page says he resigned in 2011.)

Then we have the Institute of Political Education which appears to be primarily dedicated to the EU integration project. Headed by Oleksandar Solontay and Andrey Strannikov, both associated with "Youth Guard" and other NGOs active in Ukrainian Politics.

Next is the Institute of Media which appears to be an anti-Russia propaganda outfit. Its head is Victoria Syumar.
Tired now, must take a break.

No comments:

Post a Comment