KyivPost

Femen: Low on brains, big on hypocrisy

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Feb. 18, 2011, 1:01 a.m. |

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-To The Editor: In the Feb. 4 edition of the Kyiv Post (Yanukovych: Sexist-in-chief), Maria Popova, a member of the Femen women’s group, disparaged Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych for inviting investors to come to Kyiv to experience “Ukrainian women taking off their clothes in spring.”

What is there to criticize?

Yanukovych can hardly hope to entice investors with anything else his country has to offer these days: “Come to see our broken infrastructure!,” “Have a look at our begging pensioners!,” “Enjoy one of the most corrupt judicial systems on earth!,” “Try to navigate the least business friendly bureaucracy in Europe,” “Pay bribes to be let go by vodka-drinking policemen for speaking English after midnight on Kreshchatyk.”

None of these slogans will lure investors of sound mind to Ukraine, so the president went for the only tangible asset Ukraine currently has: Ukraine’s young women.

Femen reacted irately to such a brazen advertisement of Ukraine’s women’s dress style, as their monopoly of making young Ukrainian women look sluttish internationally will come under dire threat if Yanukovych continues to promote Ukraine this way. Because, in fact, during my years in Kyiv, I have never seen a Ukrainian women take of her clothes in public, lest she be a member of Femen.

But the Femen leadership did not really understand the president’s good intentions. He is in no way trying to dismantle Femen’s monopoly, but in fact he is finally acknowledging the great service Femen does to the nation: thanks to their frequent getting naked in front of the international press, including jumping around bare-breasted for the entertainment of foreign TV viewers for no sensible reason except a desire to be on TV, Femen has given the world a lasting picture what a Ukrainian girl is: beautiful, slim and ready to undress as soon as a camera is pointed at her.

Yanukovych’s great error was to forget to mention that such displays of naked girl gatherings can be enjoyed all year round in Kyiv, not just in spring.

So Maria Popova’s call for the impeachment of Yanukovych is an overreaction, born out of a misunderstanding. But such a lack of thought is standard for the leadership of Femen.

Every time they move away from their naked to spoken messages, the complete opposite effect happens. They attempt to show that Ukraine is not a brothel by showing the same world lots and lots of young girls’ bosoms. They denounce pornography as degrading to women, but protest with a pornographic actress.

Such contradictory messages and lack of coherence are hallmarks of Femen’s activities. Thus, the leadership of Femen should be grateful for the clarity with which Yanukovych conveyed Femen’s only over-arching message to the world: “Ukrainian women easily take off their clothes.”

And with Femen’s continuous advertisement campaign to investors’ base instincts and Yanukovych finally extending presidential gravitas to their campaign, bright times await this country as a future hybrid Thai-Belarus.

Thomas Claus Theiner is a Kyiv-based political consultant who specializes in long-term political and media campaigns. Currently he is preparing to launch a revamped ukraine.com and has been coming to Ukraine regularly for four years.
The Kyiv Post is hosting comments to foster lively debate. Criticism is fine, but stick to the issues. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks will be removed from the site. If you think that a posted comment violates these standards, please flag it and alert us. We will take steps to block violators.
Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 5:30 a.m.    

so what if they don't make sense and are illogical and too emotional... cut them some slack , after all they are women!you know...FEMALES! What did you expect - robotic Einsteins? Enjoy what YOU have while you can because nothing lasts forever and this too shall pass!

Chill out!

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 11:26 a.m.    

:)

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Anonymous March 22, 2011, 11:39 p.m.    

what they do not realise is that their method of protest is actually promoting exploitation of women. Sex Tourists will come top Ukraine wanting to see bare breasted protests. Wnat ot make a point have naked men and old women demonstrate.

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Anonymous May 17, 2011, 9:47 p.m.    

It's marketing their ideas. When they protested with tops on, no one paid any attention to them. And now they do. If you are saying that their ploy is not working. Then think again, because here we are, talking about them.... see it works.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 11:26 a.m.    

“Come to see our broken infrastructure!,” “Have a look at our begging pensioners!,” “Enjoy one of the most corrupt judicial systems on earth!,”

Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/opinion/letters/detail/97457/#ixzz1EIirccif

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 4:57 p.m.    

Mr. Theiner, it is you who are the hypocrite for criticizing Femen, rather than Yanukonvikt.

You should have stopped at the paragraph relating to &quot;come see our broken infrastructure,&quot; &quot;corrupt judicial system,&quot; &quot;pay bribes.&quot;

How dare you defend a stupid idiot thug like Yanukonvikt referring to women undressing because &quot;Ukraine has nothing to offer&quot;?

It is precisely BECAUSE of Yanukonvikt and his homo sovieticus mafiosi oligarch thugs and the rest of the so-called &quot;political elite&quot; in Ukraine that Ukraine has nothing to offer!!!!

In the upside down, bass ackwards bizarro territory, still infested with homo sovietici and lenin and stalin statues, that calls itself &quot;Ukraine,&quot; but is in reality Firtashia, the ONLY people who have a spine, a backbone, brains, a clear message, a set of goals and principles, and the guts and the courage to stand up for them are FEMEN.

The so-called &quot;political opposition&quot; certainly doesn't stand up to Yanukonvikt and his slide to authoritarianism.

Mr. Theiner, showing bosoms out on the street during a poltical demonstration to make a point is hardly equivalent to being a brothel, or endorsing a brothel, no matter how you try to spin it.

A portion of the people in Ukraine are either homo sovieticus, who are brain dead and quite happy to return to the terror of stalin.

A portion of the people in Ukraine pretend to be in the so-called &quot;opposition&quot; - but they are part of the &quot;political elite&quot; and benefit from a corrupt dysfunctional system of government quite happily.

And the rest of the people believe that if they ignore Yanukonvikt, keep under the radar, that a stalinist regime can simply be ignored away.

Yanukonvikt is incapable of good intentions, and he is CERTAINLY not trying to do anyone a &quot;service&quot; except for himself, his sons, and his cronies, much less FEMEN. He didn't mention FEMEN in Davos - he was referring to ALL Ukrainian women.

And you obviously have missed, among other things, the way Ukrainian women dress in the hope of catching an oligarch or a foreign man, and the splashing in the fountains of Kyiv by young women, when the water was turned off for the umpteenth time - due to a broken infrastructure.

And in Davos, he exhibited the chauvinistic, patronizing, disrespectful attitude of homo sovietici towards women - as inferior beings, to be gawked at, to receive any benefits at the whim of Yanukonvikt and company, to be viewed as playthings, and nothing more.

He simply does not know what to do with brave, courageous women who have a clear message and stand up for Ukraine.

Shame on you, Mr. Theiner.

As between Yanustalin and his mafia and FEMEN, I'm with FEMEN all the way.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 6:15 p.m.    

Have you ever heard about Satire?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satire

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2011, 5:09 p.m.    

I am familiar with, and have heard of, both Satire and satire.

I saw neither in Mr. Theiner's article.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 6:29 p.m.    

I think the author misunderstands &quot;pornography&quot;, this article is really a cheap shot. I admire Femen for their consistency in protesting many different things that are wrong here in Ukraine: I respect their courage but I also respect their playfulness.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 6:29 p.m.    

It is no surprise that Theiner can be so crude in his commentary, looking for an invitation to Yanuks next &quot;bunga-bunga&quot; party?

Why not, who cares about &quot;sex trafficking&quot;, just another way to make a buck? Women are only good for one thing, they are not allowed to think, they should do what they are told!

This is what this regime is about, NO RESPECT, for anyone or anything other then their perverse ideology!

How is Ukraine to move forward when its leaders are so backwards??

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2011, 6:52 p.m.    

These Femen protestors have 'more balls' ,,,,than do some men.....

They get out and protest,,,for a reason....while the men stand and stare..

If everyone, men and women, had the courage of these ladies,,,,,then a revolution would have Yanukalin running back to moscow...

BLESS UKRAINE!!

.

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2011, 12:41 a.m.    

You didn't read Shevchenko Guest :37?

That's right Taras did not write in Little Rus'ian

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2011, 1:14 a.m.    

The closer you get to the Donbass, the worse it gets

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2011, 5:14 p.m.    

You want to &quot;sit back and let God sort it out&quot;?

God helps those who help themselves.

God &quot;sorts thing out&quot; after people are dead and meet their Maker.

If someone is beating you over the head, are you going to wait God to &quot;sort it out&quot;?

And why would a change in a governmental system involve &quot;going after soviet Dedo and Baba&quot;?????!!!!!

Waiting for &quot;God to sort it out&quot; is exactly why the sins of 20 years have been committed.

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2011, 5:26 p.m.    

Go Femen! Go Diaspora! Go UPA! Go Orange! Go YKPAIHA! The Russian have been trying to destroy Ukraine for 300 years. They are nothing but a godless gulag. Russia is a collection of barbarians held together by the gangster mafia. Russia is not even a country. It is an occupation of &quot;scattered&quot; rejects. They couldn't even come up with their own language. They took Ukrainian and screwed it up into something more vulgar than Klingon. Duraks!

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Anonymous Feb. 20, 2011, 9:30 a.m.    

Having a close friend from Ukraine, I am well aware of the effect that entrenched political corruption has on the Ukrainian people. When national leaders seem devoted primarily to the perpetuation of their own power and priviledge, then sometimes the only non-violent way to gain the attention of the powerful and to motivate the downtrodden is through courageous, outrageously theatrical demonstrations. This is what Femen does with their boldly satiric action. The women of Femen have not given up hope for a better future. I like them.

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Anonymous Feb. 20, 2011, 5:51 p.m.    

I congratulate Femen for their bravery. I wish Ukraine had more people willing to protest!

At first, they could not get attention for their issues, so they starting disrobing and now they do get attention.

It is a far better attention getter, that the corruption that runs rampant under this corrupt and mafia like illegal govt.

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Anonymous March 22, 2011, 11:36 p.m.    

This from the person who had destroyed For-UA Who banned Free speech, Anita, Green tea and others who opposed his limited political point of view. Gene Nelson himself when all others had been denied free speech became the target of vilification when he later realised, some four years late, that Yushchenko was the problem not the solution. For-ua went into decline and soon lost its readership as a result of Gene Nelsons attacks on democratic values.

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Anonymous Feb. 20, 2011, 5:54 p.m.    

Actually, it was under Orange that moves started being made regarding prostitution.

Prostitution ran rampant under the days of Kuchma and now appear heading back to the same status.

I often wonder why some like you Guest, don't keep your thoughts to yourself, rather than to put them into print. Obvious that you prefer to write in as guest instead of your name, so you don't embarrass yourself.

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Anonymous March 17, 2011, 6:50 p.m.    

Smart comment!

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Anonymous March 17, 2011, 6:54 p.m.    

Ukraine is second Sweden, simillar mentality I believe! A very brave girls!

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Anonymous March 18, 2011, 7:56 a.m.    

I found the following article on the internet, and after the article, I provide some additional information.

Five years ago Yugoslavia's president died in The Hague. The local UN tribunal denied him adequate medical treatment.

Cathrin Sch&amp;#252;tz, who holds a degree in political science and is a writer/analyst for Junge Welt, was a member of the defense team of Slobodan Milosevic before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) from 2002 on. Among her contributions was &quot;The destruction of Yugoslavia - Slobodan Milosevic replies to his accusers,&quot; published by the Zambon-Verlag.

On the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the death of Slobodan Milosevic, you will be protesting this Friday (March 11, 2011) at the Office of the United Nations in Vienna. Why not in The Hague where the former Yugoslav and Serbian president died in his cell during his trial before the Yugoslavia Tribunal (ICTY)?

The UN has created a monster with the ICTY and we’re demanding to finally remove this monster from the world. The governments of the United States and Germany set up the ICTY in 1993 as the first ad hoc tribunal in the UN Security Council, although the SC has no legal authority for such a step. A UN body, which judges citizens of member states, is in fundamental contradiction to the UN Charter. At the illegal establishment in The Hague we see no one to discuss this with.

What interest did the U.S. and Germany pursue with the establishment of the ICTY?

Because Yugoslavia stood in the way of their drive to expand in Eastern Europe, they led the way to its destruction; both states share responsibility for the outbreak and escalation of secessionist civil wars. With full awareness of the results of their plans, they had already in 1993 by diplomatic and covert operations covered their hands with Balkan blood, and then invented a &quot;court&quot; that could be used as a weapon to pressure the warring parties. And it should judge the crimes committed in former Yugoslavia - in true NATO-style: bring the recalcitrant Serbs to their knees and acquit the NATO countries of their responsibility. With this in mind, protected by the ICTY, NATO conducted an aggressive war against Yugoslavia in 1999 without a UN mandate. Because of its financial resources and political connections NATO spokesman Jamie Shea had described the military alliance as a &quot;friend of the ICTY&quot; and thus proactively explained why there would be no charges brought for NATO's war crimes -- crimes that have been certified by Amnesty International.

But does there exist international standards for fair trials?

In order to carry out the political mission, the ICTY had to disregard standards that normally apply. The Serbian opposition leader Vojislav Seselj has been held in custody for eight years. This is a clear breach of the European Convention on Human Rights. In any rule of law a defendant has a right to know what he is accused of. The ICTY has made basic changes in the particulars of the indictments several times, even after the trial had begun. It changed its own rules umpteen times and constantly violated them. Milosevic was refused his guaranteed right to defend himself. Radovan Karadzic is threatened with the same. The principle of giving equal treatment to prosecution and defense was violated every day. The prosecutor held weekly press conferences in the ICTY, and Richard Dicker of Human Rights Watch, a renowned producer of anti-Serb propaganda, rushed regularly to the foyer to attack Milosevic to the media. Meanwhile our colleague was ejected from the building when he distributed a handout to a journalist. The huge budget of the ICTY stood behind the accusers. The Milosevic-defense had to rely on donations alone. When the German government criminalized the fundraising campaign, froze our funds and also blocked my account, the ICTY refused us any support. This greatly limited our work.

You describe the ICTY as anti-Serb. But there were also Croats and Bosnian Muslims convicted...

Although this was a three-sided civil war, about 80 percent of all defendants are Serbs, including many top politicians and senior military. Not so with the Croats and Bosnian Muslims. The Croatian General Ante Gotovina was indeed found responsible for notorious &quot;ethnic cleansing of Krajina,&quot; which removed hundreds of thousands of Serbs, but not his superior officers. The same applies to the Bosnian Muslim Naser Oric. Although he boasted during the war to the Western press with the severed heads of Serbs, the ICTY says that no one can prove he is responsible for the attacks of his soldiers on the Serbs around Srebrenica. The U.S. journalists, who were the first to see his human war trophies, were never called to testify by the ICTY. The pseudo trials against non-Serbs are meant to demonstrate to the outside world the impartiality of the ICTY.

Former ICTY chief prosecutor Carla del Ponte will now render a judgment in the case of organ trafficking by the Kosovo Albanian mafia. Serbs from Kosovo were deported to Albania and were systematically eviscerated.

Del Ponte has demonstrated in her autobiography the information needed to expose the organ trade, which led to the investigation and the report of the Special Rapporteur of the Council of Europe, Dick Marty. But I wonder if she in her current involvement wants to cover up a bigger scandal. Marty has namely discovered that under Del Ponte 2003the ICTY destroyed evidence of organ harvesting by the criminal gangs in Kosovo!

The majority of the local media [in Berlin] then described Slobodan Milosevic as they describe Muammar al Gadhafi today. Take your pick: Either he was a megalomaniac, evil, genocidal, yes, even a new Hitler. You were part of his defense team. What was it like?

Lord David Owen, former EU Special Envoy for the Balkans, described Milosevic as a &quot;Yugoslav” who was anything but an ideologue for a Greater Serbia or promoter of &quot;ethnic cleansing.&quot; I agree with Owen. Milosevic often took Croats and Bosnian Muslims under his protection, and he stressed how they were used by the West and misled. He also mentioned in his defense the support of the Bosnian Muslim forces by foreign mujahideen. However, he was opposed to any overestimation of the &quot;Islamic terror.&quot; He stressed instead that the U.S. was responsible for the importation of Islamic fighters. It was no coincidence that the non-Serbs facing charges also respected him.

I was impressed by the reports of the defense witnesses, with whom I had close contact. They were Western politicians, diplomats, military officers, journalists who, in one way or another, witnessed the war. And all of their statements they confirmed that the allegations against Milosevic were as false as everything else that has been reported about Yugoslavia.

How did Milosevic experience his imprisonment and trial?

He probably never believed that the presumption of innocence would apply to him was that he would experience a legitimate trial. But he held his head high and put his accusers on trial. He made no compromise, no deal that would bring him privileges. He was free inside, as he himself observed. He could not help but see the ICTY as a repressive political instrument that was used to punish political leaders like him who refused to unconditionally surrender to imperialism. More and more harassment was used in order to weaken his defense. Finally the Tribunal in early 2006 refused to allow him treatment at a heart clinic in Moscow, which assured that he would not survive the Tribunal.

During the wars in former Yugoslavia, most of the media were uncritically anti-Serb. How did you find the journalists at the trial?

The press was never interested in the content of the trial. When it became clear that the prosecutors couldn’t prove their allegations, and on the other hand Milosevic could expose the arming of Croatian and Bosnian Muslim sides and later the Kosovo-Albanian side by Germany and the United States, the trial was hushed up. They did not allow the image of Serbia as the aggressor to falter. The German media did not even report it when a German witness was clearly shaken at the Kosovo portion of the trial. Ex-army officer Dietmar Hartwig was head of European observers in Kosovo and on the spot until the beginning of the NATO attack. He experienced terror, not from Serbs, but from the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). And Bo Adam of the Berliner Zeitung newspaper was told by local Albanians, that the &quot;innocent Kosovars&quot; at Racak* were really combat deaths.

*In January 1999, casualties from a battle between KLA commandos and Serb police and army in Racak, Kosovo, were disguised as civilian deaths and Western politicians and media used the incident to promote anti-Serb propaganda leading to the war.--Translator

Usually no journalists were there, with the exception of Germinal Civikov, whose reports provide valuable evidence.

There are many People especially England and America who know that Slobodan Milosevic was innocent, and that England and America schemed this, because the Jews need Kosovo for a Second Homeland.

It is a fact that many of those who schemed to steal Kosovo are Jews.

The Albanians do not realize that the Jews want Kosovo, and that it will become to the Albanians what Palestine has become to the Palestinians.

I know that Jews say that they are against Kosovo’s Independence, because they will not admit that, and it was Jews in the American Congress that were the prominent supporters of a Stolen Kosovo.

The Jews will admit that they want Kosovo, only after the Albanians admit to the things they know to be true, and I guess we will be waiting a long time for both of those things.

Israel knows that if there is to be an Independent Kosovo, then it will not need the help of Israel.

In fact, if the Arabs knew that Israel wanted an Independent Kosovo, then the Arab World would not support Kosovo’s Independence to the degree they have.

This is why Israel has made numerous claims that it will never recognize Kosovo Albanian Declaration of Independence.

If Europe is wise then they will spend less on their military, and ask America as a friend to leave Continental Europe.

Any Kosovo compromise should have the destruction of Camp Bondsteel, or the signing over of Camp Bondsteel to Serbia, with a thin strip of Serbian Land that connects Camp Bondsteel to Serbia Proper.

Any Kosovo compromise should involve the total racial segregation of Albanians and non-Albanians in the Balkans, because Albanian can never live with other Races, because that is just a Strongly Entrenched Albanian Trait.

After that, the world should be asked by means of Global of an International Summit Meeting if a race that acts for over 132 years like the Albanians is deserving of the fullness of the economic genocide by the other races of the world.

The Albanians made their intentions to only live with their own Race, and to steal other People’s Land in the 1878 League of Prizren Declaration.

If it brings Happiness to People to live only with their own race, then it should be discussed in an International Summit Conference in a mature and constructive manner.

This is because America’s Constitution says that People have the Right to Pursue Happiness.

Britain and America knew that the Albanians will never want to live with other Races, and so they Conspired to bomb Serbia, and perform Physical, Economic, and Cultural genocide on the innocent Serbian People to make the Racist Albanian Thieves Happy, because America’s Constitution says that People have the Right to Pursue happiness.

Britain, America, and their NATO Nazis of Europe Puppets have lied and continue to Slander the innocent Serbian People, along with performing Physical, Cultural, and Economic Genocide on the innocent Serbian People.

These Anglo-American Dogs have even instructed their Puppet Judges at the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia to Pervert the Course of Justice and Slander the innocent Serbia People in order to whitewash the Monstrous Crimes of this Anglo-American Excrement.

There are many frozen conflicts in Europe, and even in European Union countries like Spain and Cyprus, and any solution should not be one-sided, but mutually agreed to.

We all know that the English Thieves has stolen Gibraltar from Spain, and many People are wondering why the Different Races cannot live together in one Country of Spain, rather than Spain and English Gibraltar.

Any agreement has to be arrived at without the Nazis interfering in those negotiations where Countries have Two or More Different Races.

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