To a large degree, Ukraine today remains an
agricultural powerhouse. This is good news for the state and its corrupt
officials that build their empires of wealth on shadowy land business and seizure
of agricultural production; the practices often sanctioned by subservient
courts. With tacit approval from top Ukrainian policymakers, state and local
bureaucrats target successful but independent entrepreneurs like Arkady Kornatsky,
the owner of a modern agribusiness in the southern Mykolayiv Oblast.
Arkady Kornatsky also happened to win a parliamentary
seat in a single-mandate election district against the local governor’s man
last fall, and now the destruction of his business is also a political strategy
to deprive Kornatsky, an anti-corruption campaigner, of a voice in Ukraine’s
parliament, the Verkhovna Rada.
Yanukovych is already the subject of much scrutiny in
the West because of the jailing of his principal opponent, former Prime Minister