In a series of interviews for The Nation, Truthdig Assistant Editor Alexander Reed Kelly shows why, at a time when “Ukraine needs rescuing,” the International Monetary Fund, Europe and Western corporations have no interest in actually saving the country from disaster.

The video interviews, produced by Endless Picnic, include conversations with Michael Hudson, a former balance-of-payments economist for Chase Manhattan Bank, distinguished research professor of economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City and an author of a major study of the IMF; Jeffrey Sommers, associate professor of political economy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a visiting lecturer at the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga, Latvia; and James Carden, a former adviser on Russia to the State Department.

Below is one of several clips regarding the state of Ukrainian politics, as well as an excerpt from the piece. You can watch the rest of the videos and read more, here.

From The Nation:

Nearly a year and a half after the Euromaidan protests ushered a new government into power in Kiev, Ukraine is still in trouble. Some 6,200 people have been killed, more than 15,000 wounded, and 1.2 million internally displaced in a civil war that had by mid-March, according to the new president, Petro Poroshenko, destroyed “around 25 percent of the country’s industrial potential.”

The country’s economy is out of control: Trending downward since the end of 2013, Ukraine’s gross domestic product is declining at a massive, accelerating rate. The World Bank predicts GDP will contract by as much as 7.5 percent during 2015. During 2014, the amount of money brought in on exports dropped by 40 percent, and between the beginning of 2014 and spring of this year, the goods and services available in the country became nearly 50 percent more expensive as the currency used to pay for them lost two-thirds of its value…

Observers on all sides are eager to assign blame for the danger these developments represent. The prevailing view among Westerners—and Western-looking Ukrainians—is that Putin provoked Ukraine’s new government, and by extension, the West. Putin has left no doubt about his willingness to use force (in March he told reporters he was prepared to use nuclear weapons if the fighting on his border spiraled out of control), but what is the evidence that Putin instigated the conflict? Western leaders claim he fired the first shot, so to speak, when he sent Russian soldiers into the Crimean peninsula after the change of government in Kiev. What they don’t mention is that the United States has been meddling in the affairs of eastern Europe for decades.

—Posted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata

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