The IMF Connection with the Ukraine Crisis

Prabhat Patnaik

THE security concerns of Russia arising from Ukraine’s intentions of joining NATO have been widely discussed in the media. But the IMF’s link with Ukraine which is a parallel issue has scarcely received much attention. The IMF, as is well-known, “opens up” economies around the world for the penetration of metropolitan capital by making them “investor-friendly” through the adoption of a host of anti-working class and anti-people (“austerity”) measures; and such “opening up” typically involves the taking over of natural resources of the countries and also their land areas by metropolitan capital. The mechanism that the IMF typically uses towards this end is the imposition of “conditionalities” for giving loans to countries that are in need of balance of payments support.

In addition, however, to this general role that the IMF plays, there are occasions when it plays a specific role, namely, that of supporting the US government’s cold war objectives. And in the case of Ukraine, it has played this specific role almost from the very beginning, apart from its general role of opening up the Ukrainian economy to metropolitan capital.

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Ukraine Update: Oil Hits 10-year High And Closes In On $120 A Barrel

Countercurrents | March 04, 2022

On incidents centering Ukraine, media reports said:

French President Emmanuel Macron thinks “the worst is yet to come” in Ukraine after talking with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday.

A senior French official said Macron’s warning came after the two leaders spoke for 90 minutes, which did not yield any diplomatic progress.

The official said Putin was determined to carry out the ongoing war in Ukraine until “the end.”

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Ukraine Crisis Media Coverage: We’re Europeans, Christians, Whites!

M. K. Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline | March 01, 2022

Ukrainian ‘refugees’ wait at a train station in Zahony, Hungary, a border town with Ukraine, February 26, 2022 (Photo: AP) 

Racist Ukraine coverage in mainstream Western media. Notice the racist overtones. 

1. BBC

“It’s very emotional for me because I see European people with blue eyes and blonde hair being killed” 

– Ukraine’s Deputy Chief Prosecutor, David Sakvarelidze

2. CBS News

“This isn’t Iraq or Afghanistan…This is a relatively civilised, relatively European city” 

– CBS foreign correspondent Charlie D’Agata

3. Al-Jazeera [not exactly Western, but West-aligned]

“What’s compelling is looking at them, the way they are dressed. These are prosperous, middle-class people. These are not obviously refugees trying to get away from the Middle East…or North Africa. They look like any European family that you’d live next door to.”

– Peter Dobbie, Al Jazeera news presenter.

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It’s Different, They’re White: Media Ignore Conflicts Around the World to Focus on Ukraine

Alan Macleod

MintPress News | March 02, 2022

KIEV, UKRAINE — We are living in dangerous times. All around the world, intense military actions are taking place. Last week alone, Russia launched a huge military invasion of Ukraine; Saudi Arabia carried out dozens of strikes on Yemen; Israel launched a wave of deadly missile attacks against Syria; and the United States restarted its bombing campaign in Somalia.

These four deadly incidents happened concurrently. Yet judging by media coverage, it is highly unlikely that many will even be aware of the final three. A MintPress News study of five leading Western media outlets found that overwhelming attention was paid to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, while the others were barely mentioned, if at all.

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South African Communist Party condemns racism and discrimination against Africans in Ukraine

In Defense of Communism | March 02, 2022

In a statement, the South African Communist Party (SACP) condemns the disrespectful attitudes unleashed recently against African people by state actors and others in Ukraine

The statement also slams NATO aggressive expansion eastwards and calls all parties involved to work towards a peaceful resolution in the situation.  

More specifically, the statement of the SACP reads: 

“The South African Communist Party (SACP) strongly condemns the racism and racial prejudice and disrespectful attitudes unleashed against Africans by state actors and others in Ukraine and its borders with some countries. The reality of racism and racial discrimination meted against Africans in favour of whites being prioritised in the evacuation from the situation in Ukraine involves Africans being maltreated, viewed with distain, approached as if they are criminals and rightless, pushed back, among others, is sickening, to say the least. This should be considered as the tip of the iceberg after pretentions broke loose, exposing the Nazi and white supremacist tendencies that prevail in Ukraine and the countries bordering it in which Africans experienced the contemptuous, racist discrimination and maltreatment. The SACP expresses its solidarity with the affected African people and their families and calls on the African Union and African governments to take active steps within the framework of international law to secure the safety of the African people and ensure that they arrive home alive. The United Nations must not be silent about the racist conduct but must investigate and deal with it in pursuit of its “Fight Racism” programme towards eliminating racism and its material basis.

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Prensa Latina Condemns Boycott to Russian Media in Europe

teleSUR | March 03, 2022

Image showing the logo of Russia Today.

Image showing the logo of Russia Today. | Photo: Twitter/ @MayadeenEnglish

Censorship prevents European audiences from accessing alternative news and views to those spread by Western corporate media monopolies.

The president of Prensa Latina agency Luis Enrique Gonzalez condemned recent actions taken by the European Community and digital platforms against outlets Russia Today (RT) and Sputnik. According to the statement, the boycott of RT and Sputnik violates the individual rights of the professionals who work in these media.

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Fortunately, We Don’t Run Banking with The SWIFT System: Maduro

teleSUR | March 03, 2022

President Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela. | Photo: Twitter/ @bancaynegocios

The Venezuelan President recalled that the SWIFT banking system baned seven state-owned Russian banks from making transactions with it at the request of the European Union. 

On Wednesday, President Nicolas Maduro welcomed that Venezuela does not depend on the SWIFT financial messaging system, from which seven Russian banks were expelled due to the sanctions of the European Union (EU).

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Did a University Just Ban Dostoevsky to Teach Putin a Lesson?

The Citizen | March 04, 2022

As the world responds to Russian aggression in Ukraine with protests, government imposed sanctions and calls for cultural boycotts – including cancelling concert tours to the country and withdrawal of film released, a university in Milan perhaps took things too far.

The administration of the University of Milano-Bicocca, it seems, responded to global events with an attempt to cancel a class on Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky.

The news came to light when Paolo Nori, an Italian writer who had been invited to host a four part guest lecture on Doestoevsky’s work at the University of Milano-Bicocca, took to instagram to say that he had received word that his course was “postponed” indefinitely.

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Cuba Donates Thousands of Doses of Soberana 02 Vaccine to Sahrawi People

Orinoco Tribune | March 03, 2022

This Friday, Cuba donated a batch of 458,000 doses of its Soberana 02 COVID-19 vaccine to the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), destined for the pediatric population of that country.

The African nation’s ambassador accredited in Havana, Mohamed Salec Abdesamad, praised the gesture on behalf of his people and government at a ceremony held at the Finlay Institute of Vaccines (IFV), creator of the immunogen, in Cuba’s capital.

The diplomat thanked Cuba’s President Miguel Díaz-Canel and all of Cuba, on behalf of the president of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and the Secretary General of the Polisario Front, Brahim Gali.

Mohamed Salec Abdesamad assured that the doses will benefit the refugee population and residents in liberated territories.

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