The austerity preacher
In December 2015, Biden spoke in the Rada, the Ukrainian parliament, lecturing his subjects on the need to “end cronyism.” He praised those who carried out the coup two years earlier and those conducting war crimes against the civilian population of Donbass.
He also warned the assembled politicians not to lose their nerve in carrying out austerity measures on the backs of the workers if they wanted to continue getting money from the U.S. and the International Monetary Fund.
“The big part of moving forward with your IMF program — it requires difficult reforms. … to vote to raise the pension age is to write your political obituary in many places. … It requires sacrifices that might not be politically expedient or popular. … I urge you to stay the course as hard as it is.”
Any worker, looking at the facts here, might ask not only about the evident corruption, but about how it is “normal” and “legal” for a U.S. politician to dictate the political and economic policies, including war and peace, poverty and austerity, of another country.
Both Biden and Trump, congressional Democrats and Republicans, are playing out their struggle for power and privilege atop a mountain of bodies of children, civilians and anti-fascists killed in Donbass, and the ongoing repression of political oppositionists, journalists and ordinary workers in Ukraine.
That is the real scandal and the real story that must be exposed.
Home destroyed by Ukrainian bombs on the outskirts of Donetsk. SLL photo: Greg Butterfield