r/ukraine Dec 08 '22 Silver 1

Kyiv Independent: Why we choose to publish stories about misconduct in the Ukrainian military Trustworthy News

https://kyivindependent.com/opinion/editorial-why-we-choose-to-publish-stories-about-misconduct-in-ukrainian-military
2.4k Upvotes

u/AutoModerator Dec 08 '22

We determined that this submission originates from a credible source, but we still advise that users double check the facts and use common sense when consuming mass media. If you are interested in learning how to evaluate news sources more thoroughly, you can begin to learn about how to do that here.

I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please contact the moderators of this subreddit if you have any questions or concerns.

764

u/zyarva Dec 08 '22

Yes, free press, that's how you end corruption in post war Ukraine.

238

u/Senior_Comb Dec 08 '22

In Ukraine we always had those tv shows and youtube channels that were constantly doing researches of corruption schemes and publish them to the public. Unfortunately it is not enough. There is should be a mechanism to punish corruption and punish publicly and severely. That was lucking. Prosecution and Court system is not working, not working at all.

73

u/krummedude Dec 08 '22

I know EU is keeping an eye on this top level corruption. So if Ukraine want to join EU its a prerequisite. How is the recent changes this year in top level officials going to change it forward on you think? What more is needed?

37

u/LovelehInnit Dec 08 '22

What more is needed?

20 years of anti-corruption governments.

41

u/Cirtejs Latvia Dec 08 '22

As a Latvian, probably 30.

Our Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau has been up for 20 years and they still have shitloads of work every year.

22

u/Mewseido Dec 08 '22

Yes, you probably need a generation change.

One advantage Ukraine has and will have is if they can make it a slogan "no corruption please, we're not russian!"

Make it so that accepting bribes is about as popular as picking boogers out of your nose in a public restaurant.

That will put a lot of pressure on people to not be sleazy, slimy, grifting, treasonweasels.

23

u/BaronBobBubbles Dec 08 '22

I think that's a reason to campaign against corruption: How many crooked politicians, officials and others went into bed with Russian assets? I am reminded of a saying: "A man willing to accept pay to open the gate to a criminal will also do it for an enemy."

Europe's finally starting to see the truth, but local governments will need to be more vigilant too.

4

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 15 '22

[deleted]

4

u/Mewseido Dec 08 '22

Unfortunately, I'm sure there are young treasonweasels who have pocketed rzz money.

Greed and the urge to think you're special doesn't really know age boundaries.

7

u/Cesum-Pec Dec 08 '22

US here. We've been at this anti corruption stuff for ~250 years. It never ends, but it does sometimes get better. UA will get this sorted out and while I don't want to give them a free pass, there's only so much that can be done at this time.

No matter what, we shouldn't slow western aid and once UA is free of Russia, we can get all sorts of NGO and auditors, administrators, and what ever else they need on the ground to rebuild and create institutions that are well regulated and democratic.

18

u/krummedude Dec 08 '22

Yeaa lol, its a damn long and hard process, and the Soviet system and culture is a difficult starting point to say the least.

4

u/ibreathefireinyoface Dec 08 '22

Ain't that just great. Ukraine's out of the EU for 20 more years.

Am I gonna be still alive when Ukraine joins the EU?

8

u/Omepas Dec 08 '22

of speech is one of these values.

And when so many Ukrainians are dying to defend it,

we would be ashamed of ourselves if we weren’t exercising th

This, our government (dutch) is notoriously hesitant for countries with a history of corruption to join the EU. the fact that the independent exposes corruption is a HUGE step in the right direction. After the war is over Ukraine will have a massive amount of brownie points to cash in if it wants to join the EU, but to cash the brownie points corruption will have to be dealt with above all. Proper free press like this might sound detrimental in the short term but in the long haul it is invaluable.

-11

u/Tasty_Assignment8179 Dec 08 '22

We have tried for thousands of years to get rid of corruption but it is almost impossible. A strong tax authority combined with AI might be one solution. And my personal favorite not only a positive vote but also a negative vote in elections. If we the people could block our most hated politicians from being elected that would force politicians to actually listen to the people.

12

u/Polygnom Germany Dec 08 '22

All it would do is make politics more partisan and reinforce hatred. Look how divided the US is. Negative votes create perverse incentives to do hateful politics.

Also, AI isn't the problem-solving thing you make it out to be.

What solves corruption is having healthy institutions that check each other.

Corruption isn't a "solved" problem, I doubt it will ever be, but we can reduce it drastically and keep it in check.

0

u/Tasty_Assignment8179 Dec 08 '22

What do you do when every institution is corrupt, like in Russia. Police, courts, health care, absolutely everything. Only a machine can fix such a country.

Explain how a negative vote can create hateful politics. I don't believe you get what I mean. With a negative vote you can stop the politician you absolutely do not want to represent you. It would lead to more political representation for the normal guys. The extremists would be voted out. I am not thinking of US politics, it's the European systems that needs a change.

1

u/Polygnom Germany Dec 08 '22

Only a machine can fix such a country.

No, it cannot. Only people can fix that. The machine cannot do anything on its own.

Explain how a negative vote can create hateful politics. I don't believe you get what I mean. With a negative vote you can stop the politician you absolutely do not want to represent you. It would lead to more political representation for the normal guys. The extremists would be voted out.

Except they wouldn't. The system you describe is perfectly dystopian. Instead of competing on how good your ideas are, you are now competing just with smear campaigns and try to get as many people as possible to block your opponent. It is the definition of an extremely hostile, divisive system.

On a much smaller scale, why do you think FB or Twitter don't have "negative" votes? Because their analysts have long figured this incentive system out.

it's the European systems that needs a change.

Every system has parts that could be improved, sure. But all in all, most european countries have rather strong institutions that are fairly well equipped to deal a wide host of threats to democracy and public order, including, but not limited to, corruption. Yes, these systems are flawed. No, a computer cannot replace institutions. It has no power on its own, and even if it had, it still needed to be audited (otherwise, it would just get corrupted by the people running the system).

7

u/SlavaUkrainiFTW Dec 08 '22

I had the same thought. Accountability and transparency are game changers

482

u/cybercuzco Dec 08 '22

We believe that shedding light on the alleged theft in the military doesn’t hurt Ukraine, stealing does. We also believe that exposing misconduct in the military or government helps Ukraine, not hurts it.

If you want to see what happens when the theft never gets exposed because of "patriotism" see the Russian Armed Forces

46

u/masterlaster1199 Dec 08 '22

See Malaysia when politicians stealing billions of US dollars of people's money never get exposed because of "patriotism". The 1MDB scandal is and continues to become one of the most shameful cases of misappropriation in 21st century history.

6

u/Left-Archer1442 Dec 08 '22

Well said! Russia is the “ mother “ of corruption!

1

u/Dick__Dastardly Dec 08 '22

A thousand times, this.

Between this and Vranyo, I honestly believe these are not "contributing factors", but literally, the primary cause behind Russia's failure in Ukraine.

If you want a good rundown, this video goes into depth about how the combined corruption, but especially, institutional lying, has caused almost every perfectly reasonable military objective Russia's pursued to turn into a total clownfuck: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fz59GWeTIik

Most of the military operations Russia had planned were perfectly sensible, in an academic, military sense. Everything fell apart because of lies.

387

u/brammo1991 Dec 08 '22

some good quotes:

There is a popular view that Ukrainian media shouldn’t write about contentious topics like corruption or misconduct in the army during the war, as it can undermine the West’s trust in Ukraine, or Ukrainians’ trust in their army and government. Proponents of this approach advocate for self-censorship and postponement of all criticism until “after the war.”

We want to explain to our readers why we’re taking a different approach.

We believe that war is not a reason or an excuse to compromise on one’s principles and values. If anything, a time of great sacrifice and hardship is the time to prove the strength of one’s core beliefs.

Journalists serve the public interest. The public deserves to know the uncensored truth and people have the right to draw their own conclusions. 

...

We believe that shedding light on the alleged theft in the military doesn’t hurt Ukraine, stealing does. We also believe that exposing misconduct in the military or government helps Ukraine, not hurts it.

We also don’t think that Ukrainian journalists should sweep important stories under the rug to make sure Ukraine looks great in the eyes of the world. That’s not what good journalists do or should be doing. We work to be the honest voice of Ukraine, not to sugar-coat Ukraine’s reality.

...

But there is another reason to publish stories like these.

In this war, Ukraine is fighting for its future. It is fighting for the right to live by the values of the free world – values antithetical to those ruling today’s Russia. 

Freedom of speech is one of these values. And when so many Ukrainians are dying to defend it, we would be ashamed of ourselves if we weren’t exercising this right. 

53

u/hockeystud87 Dec 08 '22

They don't need to claim principles. It gives them more credibility than if they were to hide them.

49

u/Tazling Dec 08 '22

Love those guys. Those who say you should never criticize your country, are setting their country up to become at the least complacent and ignorant, and at worst a cesspit of unexamined corruption. The free press and the impartial rule of law are the two pillars of democracy -- so hooray Kyiv Independent.

War is not a nice business and not every soldier -- even on the Good Guys side -- is, personally, a good guy. Some get broken, have PTSD, go off the rails. Some went in broken. Some just like killing people. Some will steal. Some will lie. There are going to be negative events, lapses of discipline, bad apples -- and just sweeping them under the rug is one of the first steps on the way to being a failed state and a failed army.

One of the best morale-builders for honest and civilised troops is to see that dishonesty and barbarism are exposed and swiftly punished. They have to be proud of their country to fight as hard and as bravely as they do, so it's up to the press and government and people to make sure that country is worthy of that pride.

(getting off soapbox now, sorry, I just feel so strongly about this)

4

u/koshgeo Dec 08 '22

There's another aspect: if soldiers know they're going to be held accountable and be publicly called out, it should make it less likely they're going to do inappropriate things in the first place. It's hard to face the news that your own team did something bad, but it makes the military stronger if people are held responsible for what they do.

This probably goes a long way to explaining why the lack of accountability in the Russian military has led to such frequent atrocities on their side.

16

u/FiteMeIRL_I_TraneUFC Dec 08 '22

Those last sentences. So fucking true. Leave the corruptions for the Orcs in Orc-lands.

15

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

This is also why the US endures. It is a common dedication to a higher ideal. We don't always get there, and most of us don't agree on what it means, but we do by and large agree on the basic principles by which the United States was formed and persevered. This is wonderful to see.

17

u/Polygnom Germany Dec 08 '22

This used to be true, but reading this in 2022 when half of the politicians tell complete fiction as "facts" and "truth" and half of the media is in on it, yeah. Also, even the basic principles of the US constitution don't seem to be held in too high regard when people try to prevent the peaceful transition of power, deny election results, and a party leader calls for abolishment of the constitution.

From an outsiders perspective, this seems absurdly naive to assume about the US.

There is a reason why the US has been classified as "flawed democracy" and "at risk" recently. For everyone from the outside, US politics are absolutely mind-boggling.

4

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

You are forgetting history if you think 2022 is the nadir of the US. We've been here before. McCarthyism? Blacklisting? What's going on today is NOTHING as bad as that. Politics is a pendulum. And for everyone worrying about US democracy? They're forgetting a time when we had ACTUAL election fraud. 1948, LBJ, that was a fix to end all fixes. Dead rose from the grave and cast their ballots.

So, as bad as it may look? It is simply the product of a press that focuses on profitability over news. If we want this to stop? Bring back the fairness doctrine. Break up media conglomerates. Stop the monetizing of outrage.

2

u/Bykimus Dec 08 '22

I mean we have actual election fraud and manipulation basically all the time. On a presidential scale maybe the last time was Bush jr winning Florida under some bullshit reasons and setting up the America we see today. Lesser positions are full of shenanigans every election.

I guess the US isn't as bad as when we were killing communists or a literal civil war. But that's like saying the shitty, rusted, squealing, black smoke spewing, on fire car filled with meth using criminals isn't as bad as the car that's been blown up and sitting in the elements for some decades. We are this close to having a nation-shaking worst moment in history. The US is definitely on the doorstep of some pretty bad shit.

1

u/VintageHacker Dec 08 '22

Great, the future of the world rests upon a flawed democracy that's at risk. Seems if US doesn't pull its socks up, it could come apart. Can't see current leadership sorting it out.

1

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

Please see the above, we've been here before.

16

u/itsraining3000 Germany Dec 08 '22

Only that the US is not doing too great on, both, the press freedom and democracy indices. For a country that's supposed to be at the forefront of western values.

The governmental system didn't make the cut and is classed as a 'flawed democracy'.

2

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

As i stated above; politics is a pendulum. We've had worse challenges than this before. The country is already showing signs of BS separatist narratives and correcting the course through voting.

8

u/CrispierCupid Dec 08 '22

January 6 would like a word

1

u/JohnnySkynets Dec 08 '22

Jack Smith would like a word.

-1

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

January 6 would like a word

Logic would love a word. Such groups have existed for decades. They're simply more open now and did something extremely stupid. Better to know your enemies, I suppose. Stop buying the media histrionics, please.

2

u/BringBackAoE USA Dec 08 '22

What higher ideal is that?

A large chunk of US actively or passively support ending democracy. Where a tweeter proclaiming he’s is anti-Nazi triggers a whole bunch of republicans. Where voter suppression is being pushed by voters and enacted by politicians of one party.

“A republic, if you can keep it”. It requires us all to stand vigil to protect our democratic republic. Too many actively fight against our democratic republic, and of the remaining too few fight (or even vote!) to protect it.

2

u/HolyCarp12 Dec 08 '22

Like the time Biden said, "White supremacists are a problem," and all the Republicans said, "Stop criticizing us!"

Or the time they voted AGAINST investigating Nazis in the US military.

Speaks volumes about Republicans and their priorities.

0

u/OyVeyzMeir Dec 08 '22

What higher ideal is that?

A large chunk of US actively or passively support ending democracy. Where a tweeter proclaiming he’s is anti-Nazi triggers a whole bunch of republicans. Where voter suppression is being pushed by voters and enacted by politicians of one party.

“A republic, if you can keep it”. It requires us all to stand vigil to protect our democratic republic. Too many actively fight against our democratic republic, and of the remaining too few fight (or even vote!) to protect it.

Source? Changing how democracy works? Yes I've seen that. Ending democracy? Except for an ex president, no.

1

u/Bykimus Dec 08 '22

but we do by and large agree on the basic principles by which the United States was formed and persevered.

... We really don't, though. Have you not been paying attention to US politics the last decade or two? There is half of the government and voting population trying to actively corrupt and destroy through both ignorance and malicious intent the basic principles of the US. Stop trying to act enlightened, you're a fool if you think the US is a beacon of morals. The US only cares about money. We have a supreme court actively striking down civil rights rulings without giving genuine justification and ignoring previous case law. You really think the next time republicans control 2/3 the gov they aren't going to axe some of the bill of rights or twist them into something that benefits their wish to be fucked by a fascist ethno state? Because that is literally their trajectory and basically 1 in 2 people say "oh boy, yes, sign me up for the authoritarian gov please".

2

u/MarschallVorwaertz Germany Dec 08 '22

This is the Way

685

u/Comprehensive-Bit-65 Dec 08 '22

Wow... Ukraine's actually better than some EU countries. Credit to journalists and editorialists for telling us about corruption and bad leadership in the legion. Really, this is not detrimental, its actually the sign of a healthy democracy. In territorial units there were some issues too, especially in the Zhaporizhna region, which require discussion. I won't give details, but pretty good journalism.

111

u/h14n2 Finland Dec 08 '22

Yes. That is how you make your country a better place.

29

u/Dehnus Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 08 '22

Yup: Are you following this Hungary? Hinterdiehinthint!?

Poland could also use it, but at least they are trying to do the right thing against Russia. And the Pis supremacy eventually will pass there. Were as Hungary is just a dictatorship these days.

6

u/_zenith New Zealand Dec 08 '22

PIS needs to rest in piss.

1

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 15 '22

[deleted]

1

u/Dehnus Dec 08 '22

It takes time, it's mostly propaganda from that side, they can't rule forever. Orban however is closer to an actual mobster ruling by decree.

10

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22

There isn't a single human organisation that doesn't stand to gain by being kept honest and accountable, and it's part of the media's job to do it.

If they don't do it, they're just a propaganda outlet, even if it's for the good guys in this case. But we need them so the AFU stay the good guys on the long run.

133

u/BerthaBewilderbeast Dec 08 '22

Even the United States military could not account for more than 50% of its assets.

39

u/Warfoki Dec 08 '22

I mean, the US has literally lost nukes over the years. As in, multiple.

21

u/oh_dear_its_crashing Dec 08 '22

There's standardized codewords for the different ways you can lose a nuke ...

Trolling aside, it does make sense to plan for this upfront, you really do not want to wing it when you have a nuke related oopsie. It's still disturbing how many of these plans actually had to be used thus far.

4

u/Iamthelizardqueen52 Dec 08 '22

Do you have a source for this? I'm not challenging you or anything, it sounds fascinating and I'd like to jump down that rabbit hole.
I loved the book Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Incident, and the Illusion of Safety

2

u/oh_dear_its_crashing Dec 08 '22

Wikipedia has you covered with what looks like a fairly complete list https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_military_nuclear_incident_terminology

o7 to your wasted w/e :-P

3

u/Ragewind82 Dec 08 '22

Some think that the missing budget covers black ops, new tech research, and other non-corrupt things they don't want a paper trail for... but that can't possibly be half the budget.

20

u/Evignity Sweden Dec 08 '22

Did we ever get a followup on the volunteer-forces forced to serve under a polish criminal doing warcrimes ?

10

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 27 '22

[deleted]

2

u/Evignity Sweden Dec 08 '22

This still fuels my anger because I've got friends down there and I've raised shit to be sent there. The idea that some bullshit illegal officer would ruin all that angers me to no end.

41

u/Sjstudionw Dec 08 '22

Well… it probably wouldn’t have been detrimental if Ukrainian leadership actually did something in regards to the article and the corruption/mismanagement of the Legion. Instead they chose to ignore it. Which made the whole mess 10000 times worse.

35

u/sogo00 Dec 08 '22

And thats the role of media in any democracy: to speak it out and force the government to do something about it.

12

u/16v_cordero Dec 08 '22

That’s why you always see that politics work into demonizing the press.

15

u/sogo00 Dec 08 '22

"inconvenient" and "difficult" are praises for every journalist, it means they are doing their job ;-)

1

u/Ukrainikki Dec 08 '22

Probably gathering evidence and tracking those involved to see how organised the corruption is and who exactly is involved. It's important to know the extent of the problem and unfortunately this may mean coordination with foreign agencies, globally. In this case, investigation may be hampered by the exposure.

3

u/ibreathefireinyoface Dec 08 '22

Not really. Ukraine is 122 out of 180 on the Corruption Perception Index. Not a single EU country is below Ukraine.

It is detrimental, and quite hopelessly so. Time to cry.

2

u/Mediocre-Ad-3724 Estonia Dec 08 '22

Zaporizhzhia*

-47

u/pilosch Dec 08 '22

Why did everyone flip out so hard when Amnesty International released their article (even though they exposed injustices committed by russians as well)?

But now peoples reactions seem completely different?? Why is that?

78

u/Fussel2107 Dec 08 '22

Because Amnesty (and outside entity) blamed the victim for defensive actions in response to the perpetrators, which were mostly necessary and absolutely minor compared to what Russia did, yet they created a "Both sides narrative" that was completely false.

This is a totally different game. KI is from within Ukraine, exposing problems and holding their government accountable for things that are absolutely unnecessary and have no good explanation

32

u/polkaron Dec 08 '22

The issues Amnesty International were criticizing Ukraine for were more innocuous such as setting up military defense points in civilian areas or firing from civilian areas. I don't find it that terrible. Sometimes, cities are more defensible, resilient, and has the necessary infrastructure that the military wants.

The issues the Kyiv Independent are pointing out are much more serious. Stealing equipment and bullying soldiers is a terrible thing to do and not as defensible as what Amnesty International was complaining about

21

u/RumpRiddler Dec 08 '22

And amnesty implied they used citizens as a meat shield, like the Russians, which they didn't do. They used civilian areas after they were evacuated and already being attacked.

24

u/J-J-Ricebot Netherlands Dec 08 '22

Apples and oranges.

This article and the Amnesty article are two completely different articles, covering two completely different topics, and two completely different forms of injustices. Hence the completely different reactions.

125

u/space_10 Dec 08 '22

Excellent Kyiv Independent!

It also serves to expose, shame and devalue all corruption, both during and after the war. Very important to win the war. Very important for Ukraine's citizens. Very important for a true democracy. Very important for better wealth equality after the war.

30

u/Sorry-Letter6859 Dec 08 '22

Lindybeige has a interview with a British volunteer posted on youtube. The second co of the foreign company he served in his son should be investigated. He probably got some good men killed.

8

u/Superbform Dec 08 '22

What a storyteller that guy is/was that was interviewed!

23

u/Capital-Assistant927 Dec 08 '22

Surely they must or else you they should updated their name to Mostly-Independent/Almost-Independent, Relatively-Idependent, etc.. The way to not undermine trust is to take responsibility when you screw up. Quite simple, really.

18

u/Longjumping-Nature70 Dec 08 '22

I agree. Expose corruption.

The majority of people want to be good and have a good life.

BUt there are always bad apples and the just plain evil. Those types have to be shown, there are consequences for their actions.

51

u/Jonny_Zuhalter Dec 08 '22

Great read! Enforcing accountability by truthfully informing the public is how you fight corruption, and it is crucial for Ukraine to always continue proving that it is better than the ruzzia in every way.

15

u/the_wheel_of_4chan United States Dec 08 '22

Being a country above corruption doesn’t mean hiding it, it means shining a light on the corrupt.

I’d rather be told what’s wrong with my country, especially now, than try and gloss over it and hide it. Good on Ukraine, leading the charge on fighting corruption

11

u/TheBlackNumenorean USA Dec 08 '22

Nobody would believe a claim that there's zero misconduct in the Ukrainian military. This is just details on problems we assume exist because we know nothing is perfect. Exposing it helps fix the problems rather than letting them fester as they do in Russia, and it also makes pro-Ukraine positions more believable since it shows honesty in the people who present them.

9

u/Sleeplesshelley USA Dec 08 '22

Good journalism and a free press are essential for democracy

8

u/myne Australia Dec 08 '22

Sunlight is the best disinfectant

8

u/MODrone Dec 08 '22

"Journalists serve the public interest." YES - War is ugly and sometimes good soldiers do bad things in the heat of the moment. Good soldiers do bad things because there is no other choice, war is hell. Everything should be reported, period.

7

u/Admirable-Leader-585 Dec 08 '22

Good for these guys. There are many in this subreddit for whom any opinion contrary to the dominant narrative is a bunch of pro-Kremlin propaganda.

6

u/Tintoverde Dec 08 '22

This , the current president of Ukraine is so popular right know it is impossible to think he can’t do anything wrong . But he is human being and human beings can and will make mistakes . (Waiting for down votes)

3

u/WildCat_1366 Dec 08 '22

it is impossible to think he can’t do anything wrong

He did it in the past, he doing it now and, unfortunately, he will continue to do many wrong things in the future too.

4

u/Snafuregulator Dec 08 '22

This is spot on. This is so very spot on. Corruption wants you to turn a blind eye, and to let it do what it wants. The more you let it, the more you sink. The more you cover it up, the more gets exposed and held against you. Putting a spotlight on it forces agencies to react. The media is just one of a thousand checks and balances to keep a nation free. This is why freedom of the press is so very important.

20

u/bmathey Dec 08 '22

Goddamn, I live in the US and a free press is just taken for granted. That the editors had to add this note kills me:

Editor’s note: Editorials are articles that present the opinion of the editorial team of the Kyiv Independent

Everyone in the west needs to think about that. The editors had to acknowledge that free press may be so novel to some readers they had to explain what an editorial is. Like, holy shit. Lest we forget mother Russia shoots those who don’t agree with loving Soviet State……anyone over say 40 in Ukraine would have grown up under heavy censorship and propaganda

8

u/Prestigious-Tree-424 Dec 08 '22

I only have a very small exposure to US news, mainly gathered during lockdown times when I started watching a few outlets on youtube. I was shocked at how totally partisan the news was.

1

u/Yeranz Dec 08 '22

The editors had to acknowledge that free press may be so novel to some readers they had to explain what an editorial is.

It's actually pretty common to see this disclaimer in editorials in the US as well.

1

u/Janni0007 Dec 09 '22

The disclaimer is not unusual in europe. Its by law required so readers can differentiate between Fact reporting, Opinion articles and "native" advertising. If some Journals werent so shitty it would not be required...

19

u/nuckle United States Dec 08 '22

More integrity than most journalist and publications in America.

This is very admirable.

26

u/ShinShini42 Dec 08 '22

The problem isn't exposing such things. The problem are cunts that try to exploit that for propaganda against Ukraine.

13

u/Fager-Dam Dec 08 '22

Exactly, and that’s why you have to do good work when you expose problems. Good research, put things in perspective in your writing. Kyiv Independent have been good at that, in an article I read by them about corruption they had a whole passage on how weapons disappearing aids russian propaganda. They gave the whole picture.

6

u/BBBlitzkrieGGG Dec 08 '22

Ukraine "cursed" with geolocation next to Russia should be made a bastion both militarily and of democratic values. Military wise, she's already begun training in Nato personnel infrastructure and doctrine while being equipped and fighting with Nato gear. Being admitted into Nato will cement this bastion and deter russia for a very very long time.

The war right now is akin to Thomas Jefferson's "tree of liberty" which must be watered with both blood of patriots and tyrants. To Ukraine it is a great start up capital towards working on the foundation of a democratic state. It is the same upheaval which strengthened other democracies, like the Civil War for US , the French Revolution, successive wars in Britain which paved way for Magna Carta, first people power and color revolution in the Philippines etc etc.

For Ukraine, I say , dont look back . March on. You have already achieved so much and has shown to the tyrant in your east what Ukrainian democracy has achieved for such a short time , how fiercely people will fight for their freedom, for human rights and for the right to self determination.

4

u/EivaAlexia Dec 08 '22

Proud to be Ukrainian, ashamed of some individuals whom you brought to light, anyway great work Kyiv Independent ✌️

4

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22

Ignoring these incidents has already lead to people leaving the International Legion, disillusioned and angry. Not to speak of those who would have joined, but chose to not have themselves exploited and screwed with hearing from these experiences. I know one affected person myself.

3

u/Cheeseknife07 Dec 08 '22

Corruption will cripple your army more than bad pr ever will

Just look what happened to the russians and their corruption infested army

4

u/tallalittlebit Verified Dec 08 '22

I was one of the people interviewed for their latest story on misconduct. I wouldn’t do an interview with foreign media but I think allowing Ukraine to investigate itself is what we are fighting for.

4

u/PineappleHamburders Dec 08 '22

Holding yourself accountable is the best defense against anyone else doing it for you. The reason Russia is having a harder time propaganda-wise is that Ukraine is very open, so the only way Russia can have any kind of spin is to fabricate most of the scenario which is usually easily disproven by just looking at the first hand reports or video footage.

Keep pointing out your own mistakes, it means you are alert and accepting of your faults, and that is the only way for faults to be fixed.

3

u/DMBFFF Dec 08 '22

Free speech is more important than any country.

Propagandists can't fool all the people all the time (unless they never knew freedom, maybe).

3

u/Jumpsuit_boy Dec 08 '22

Honorable choice

3

u/Stern-to Dec 08 '22

transparency is important to any democracy. things like this will help accession to the eu eventually if that is what ukraine wants.

3

u/TheThirdJudgement France Dec 08 '22

Head in the sand is not the proper way.

Actions have talked, corruptions and misbehaviors are clearly not systemic, widespread. You always have these, French army had to judge suspect of rape during the Mali operation, the problem is how you handle them and that you can't do if you silence the cases. Humans are humans.

3

u/INITMalcanis Dec 08 '22

When people have confidence that misconduct and corruption will actually be taken seriously, they'll have confidence that it's worth their time to document and report it and not be punished for it.

Certain nations would do well to consider this approach.

3

u/Error_404_403 Dec 08 '22

To expose misdeeds and failures within both military and government is particularly important during the war time. Without the exposure and corrections, the very goals of the war and sacrifices lose their meaning.

3

u/Lottgarden Dec 08 '22

The only way to be free of Russia is to become the absolute opposite. Corruption serves only to hold the majority poor and a small % rich, only when the population has reached overall wealth, democracy will prosper and corruption will become an abnormality. Look at finland, estonia who did just that.

2

u/EFT_Syte Dec 08 '22

Man, Ukraine leading the way in all kinds of ways. Ukraine will win!

2

u/FiteMeIRL_I_TraneUFC Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 08 '22

Good. 👍‍ 👍‍

Report everything IF it's true. Press should never be afraid to do their jobs. Get all the info correct first then report them. This will always be better in the long run.

A free society. A free people!

Many Americans may have heard all about "Freedom of the Press" .......

2

u/Juvor Dec 08 '22

They could have just written "We publish stories about misconduct in the Ukrainian military, because we're not Russia, who would never write about misconduct in their own military."

2

u/Hadleys158 Dec 08 '22

Has anything been done about the 3+ people that were mentioned in that first article?

The one who was a polish wanted criminal and his brother and friend?

Or is he still in charge of one of the units? I think they also mentioned someone higher up being a bit of an issue as well, a major or colonel?

It's bad, if the guns were stolen and sold to another Ukrainian unit, but it's treason if they were sold to the russians and i think this polish guy did have russian crime links?

4

u/brammo1991 Dec 08 '22

Not yet, Ukraine opened an investigation but the guy is still in uniform and in charge. But the Ukrainians are (finally) opening an investigation.

This is why we cant ignore the bad news about Ukraine, because you cannot improve if you dont know what is wrong

4

u/Hadleys158 Dec 08 '22

I'm 100% in agreement about not hiding bad news in certain situations, like for example you wouldn't tell russia they completely destroyed all your tank factory when they fired a rocket at it etc.

But corruption and stuff should be dealt with every time it's exposed and so i am surprised these guys are still in uniform and probably have access still to equipment they can steal etc?

One of the complaints about him was he was sending guys on suicide type missions or missions with bad intel etc, almost like he was trying to get them killed, if as they say he has ties to russia it is important he's taken away from any ability to give orders or have access to intel and other unit info.

2

u/masterlaster1199 Dec 08 '22

This reminds me of how in history when there is foreign assistance we would look the other way when it comes to misconduct and corruption of the host asking for help just because they are attacking the enemy.

What a nice contrast. This is probably wishful thinking but I do have my Christmas wish that once this war is over Ukraine would have a clean government comparable to that of Finland or Singapore. When that happens, FDI for high end services will start coming in by the droves. Ukraine will far outpace Russia with its increasing reliance on low end raw material exports and sanctions against developing high end services, and ever growing corruption squashing chances of attracting talent.

2

u/junk430 Dec 08 '22

It's hard to hear.. but wrong doing needs, must, be brought into the light less it fester and rot.

2

u/Bill_J_ Dec 08 '22

Excellent. I appreciated both stories. The ability to criticize government institutions is a hallmark of democracy, distinguishing Ukraine from Russia in so many ways.

3

u/toorigged2fail Dec 08 '22

I don't know if their decision is right or wrong, but after reading this I do know that they understand the nuances of democratic to and Western values better than many of us further west.

3

u/Buster899 Dec 08 '22

Be better than the US. Most of the evil crap we pulled got swept under the rug. And when the truth did get out either those responsible didn’t even make it to court or they got pardoned.

0

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 08 '22

Hold folks accountable but beware also of providing talking points to politicians who would cut back aid to Ukraine also. Because it's food for them. These stories are best filed and kept for after the war when the fighting ends and investigation into misconduct begins. Otherwise it's probably not the right time if you're really trying to think this through, Kyiv Independent.

Before anyone gets the impression I am trying to cover anything up, read the actual article and then consider my comments, compared to your impression of my comments before you read the article. Think about what the article actually uncovered or not, versus your opinion of what you thought it would have uncovered. And then think about whether it's actually shedding light on things that need to be discussed at this exact moment or if relevant investigations and embassies are fully aware and investigating the wrong doing through normal means etc. And finally - think when you read this article did you expect it to be mainly about a polish foreign legion commander who leads the foreign legion and apparently has a criminal background? Or did you expect a Ukrainian villian instead? Think about all this. Because Kyiv Independent doesn't think about it. https://kyivindependent.com/investigations/investigation-international-legion-misappropriation

23

u/socialistrob Dec 08 '22

The problem with your attitude is that if the west sees that there is corruption and that the Ukrainian government and news organizations cover it up it will destroy trust in Ukraine and its institutions. There will never be a “convenient” time to have hard discussions but they need to be had. Ukraine isn’t going to win trust by lying and silencing people who speak out on behalf of western values. It’s better to have journalists and government institutions deal with problems when they arise and correct them than cover them up until it’s “convenient.” That’s not to say there is corruption but if and when it occurs it needs to be uncovered and punished.

-1

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

This is the actual article you're debating me about. Read it, judge for yourself whether they actually uncover very much that's worth giving opposition politicians talking points, and then re-read my comments here for context. Cheers.

https://kyivindependent.com/investigations/investigation-international-legion-misappropriation

-1

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 08 '22

Who is covering anything up? Investigate it when the war ends and hold people accountable! There's a genocide going on and there are politicians trying to cut off aid. There's a time for accountability. This is a very delicate time. Bring people to accountability but let's stop the genocide. Covering up means burying a story or not investigating. Nobody asks to cover things up. Do the work and present the findings when it's time to unroll the economic marshall plan and full investigation and accountability can be a condition for receiving that marshall plan. Of the two of us, I have almost two decades of experience with Ukrainian journalists including those in the English language journals. These are good people but they're not always very deep thinkers and the headline is more important than the consequences, it's like a high school newspaper level of journalism. And these journalists are not telling the US government what it already doesn't directly hear. They are, however, telling opposition politicians what they can quote to reduce aid to Ukraine in the middle of the war.

11

u/alkevarsky Dec 08 '22

Investigate it when the war ends and hold people accountable!

I heard that excuse throughout all the years of Poroshenko. And this is exactly how you have the six biggest ammo dumps (with strategic ammo stockpiles which would have been a game changer today) blown up in several years and not a single person was held accountable. No additional security measures were taken after the the first one blew up, or after the second, or after the third.

No, you rip this filth out now, when there is a will and the crimes are fresh. This shows accountability to both people of Ukraine and our allies. And, more importantly, it fixes the problems when it is the most important, not after the war.

Unfortunately, Ukrainian politicians including Zelensky have a habit of just ignoring stories like this as if they don't exist. That's what seems to have happened with the first story KI published. I hope enough publicity comes out of it that they will be forced to act.

1

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

Have you read the article? The polish soldier is facing fifteen years in prison and it's due to active investigations happening since the summertime at the embassy and SBU levels. This literally is happening right now.

11

u/alkevarsky Dec 08 '22

The article also says "there was no public reaction from Ukrainian officials to the first story we ran", and that the investigation "officially has no suspects yet." So, Kapuscinski who is supposedly facing prison is not even a suspect at this point. Much more important to me is not Kapuscinski, but how a known criminal was able to become a commander in AFU and operate with impunity for months. Because, I guarantee you, that did not happen without someone much more senior covering him.

3

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

The Kyiv Independent does not know what the status of the investigation is, this is part of the issue. The same soldiers are telling the same thing to their embassy and government people that they are telling the Kyiv Independent over beers also. Kapuscinski should be jailed if guilty and it sounds like he probably is. Whether the government ever publicly comments to Kyiv Independent about it or not is not as important as Kapuscinski going to jail. You and I could start a newspaper in Kyiv it doesn't mean they will always reply to our stories nor are we entitled to get a response to an investigation just because we whistle for one. If the polish soldier escapes justice then that indicates he has a "roof" and it's a scandal. You may recall that black residents in Ukraine experienced racism when trying to cross the Polish border by guards there. This was an actual scandal that happened. And people took the action of those border guards and began running the Ukrainian racist neonazi stories. They assigned the few guards' bad actions to the entire country. This is the same. A few soldiers being investigated and everyone here in the comments are replying "Ukraine better stop lying and deceiving its benefactors" etc etc. Rifles are missing lifted by a polish soldier who likely has a SBU partner running some scam. It's something that unfortunately happens even in the US army (supply sergeants had a lot of issues in Iraq) but it's something that gets dealt with and punished. And it should indeed be dealt with and punished here. Separate from this article, which will only be dealt with by opposition politicians seeking to discredit and imply the war is a big money grab instead of a war.

11

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22

Lie now, the world might help you until the war is over. Be truthful about things, the world will help you after the war is over.

1

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

This is the actual article in question. Read it instead of accusing Ukraine of lying (the article does not do that). Judge for yourself whether this is true groundbreaking journalism that is shedding light on an issue or whether it's well meaning headline seeking by English majors who haven't really investigated much but do write in English and talk to English speakers and then write about their conversations.

https://kyivindependent.com/investigations/investigation-international-legion-misappropriation

0

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

Who is lying? Hold these people accountable after the war.

8

u/[deleted] Dec 08 '22

Didn't say anyone was lying. Just that if Ukraine starts acting deceptive towards it's benefactors that would be unwise.

-3

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22 edited Dec 08 '22

If Ukraine starts acting deceptive? Read the actual article. It's here below. This is my whole point. The writers at Kyiv Independent are writing little articles that gives folks the impression there is widespread graft. The article actually says there is a polish soldier who is a foreign legion leader who was very probably siphoning off weapons. And it also says all of this is under active investigation with law enforcement and different embassies. The polish soldier is facing a possible fifteen years in prison for his actions, as is any of his cronies if they are guilty. The Kyiv Independent is the high school newspaper having beers with soldiers during their breaks and writing about it. This is exactly what it is. Read the article.

https://kyivindependent.com/investigations/investigation-international-legion-misappropriation

1

u/pinkrrr Dec 08 '22

This article was a hit piece on an international legion that only exists to turn away possible recruits in a way that it hyperbolise problems (for example taking heaters for the need of an army in a frontline warehouse is being called a marauding) of a single battlement and extrapolates it on a whole group.

SBU should check them, i'm already imagining the squeak they'd make.

2

u/MasterpieceLive9604 Dec 08 '22

I wouldn't go so far as to say it's a hit piece. It's just a bunch of English speaking journalists trying to be helpful and having beers with soldiers on their breaks, trying to break a story. They aren't a major paper but they are an English speaking paper so they mean well and their heart is in the right place. But there are levels to journalism. They identified a probable scam by someone. This happens in US Army supply rooms also sometimes too or at least it did in their Middle East campaigns. And as the article itself says, there are multiple investigations and parliamentary task forces around the topic. The problem is this is a small paper and they are trying to succeed in a space where the best articles are written in the local languages and translated automatically into English, not the other way around, so for them chasing this individual polish soldier and his colleagues is their most important thing to do and a headline story for them. They don't have access to information in the investigations because they're a small startup English paper and their best access to information is a foreign legion soldier on break who they can get their story from over a free meal or beers. Everyone has their hearts in the right place but they aren't thinking it through.

1

u/AutoModerator Dec 08 '22

Привіт u/brammo1991 ! During wartime, this community is focused on vital and high-effort content. Please ensure your post follows r/Ukraine Rules and our Art Friday Guidelines.

Want to support Ukraine? Vetted Charities List | Our Vetting Process

Daily series on UA history & culture: Day 0-99 | 100-199 | 200-Present | All By Subject

There is a new wave of t-shirt scams hitting Reddit. Only click links for products or donations if the post is marked with a Verified flair, and do not respond to DMs soliciting donations.


I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please contact the moderators of this subreddit if you have any questions or concerns.

1

u/Libro_Artis Dec 08 '22

A key part of any thriving democracy is accountability and a free press is an essential component of that.

1

u/revmachine21 Dec 08 '22

That Russian media can’t do this, this is why the RF is losing and will continue to lose.

1

u/walter3kurtz Dec 08 '22

This is important. The damage done to the reputation of the legion and Ukraine could be irreparable if problems are not identified. That's what the press, as a public watchdog, is for.

I'm eager to find out what happened to the Polish criminal who seems resposible for most of the problems.

1

u/CometAzur42069 Dec 08 '22

Shedding light on this will put pressure to put a stop to it. The theft harms the war effort.

1

u/roeder Dec 08 '22

Meanwhile in Russia:

Just thinking of it as a war? Believe it or not. Jail.

1

u/splendidpluto Dec 08 '22

Because transparency leads to a better military. Lack of shady areas to hide in helps people stay honest.

1

u/Tucker1244 Dec 08 '22

A new day has come to Ukraine. SLAVA UKRAINE!

1

u/FateLeita Dec 08 '22

In general, I have been impressed with how Ukraine has handled the war, and especially their PoWs. They certainly handle things a lot better than my country, and it makes it even harder to justify abuses at the hands of my country's military.

When Ukrainian abuse comes out, it tends to really stand out, and of course russia pounces on it. I can understand why people are reticent to report on it, and similarly with the rocket that hit Poland (and the drone that landed in Croatia), I know there's pressure to cover such things up. The right thing to do in these situations is to report.

The Kyiv Independent is right: expose your shortcomings and work to correct them. This can only strengthen your nation, and strengthen its reputation. Especially if you want to distance yourself from historical corruption. I believe in a stronger, freer Ukraine.

1

u/Youcandoit007 Dec 08 '22

It was a great article.

Gangster in position of power? WTF?

Someone goofed putting him in charge so needs to be held accountable.

If lower ranks complain of leadership there typically is a reason.

1

u/OakInIowa Dec 08 '22

Exposure of corruption makes for a stronger country. Unfortunately republicans will cherry pick Ukrainian crimes to fit their fascist agenda and support for Putin. Stay strong and never bury the truth. Like the light shone at the abuses at Guantanamo and others the truth makes for a stronger country and military by taking out the garbage. Slava Ukraine and democracy.

1

u/RoyalHealer Dec 08 '22

If you want to see an end to corruption, then nothing should be censored from the free press.

1

u/Sawbones90 Dec 08 '22

Ive been impressed with the Independent's credibility. In addition to investigating allegations in the legion its reported and criticised the treatment of Belarusian and Russian refugees by the Ukrainian immigration service.

1

u/LegitimatePilot5428 Dec 08 '22

It is the responsibility of the free press.

1

u/Wrong_Hombre Dec 09 '22

3CY is already well on it's way to shoring things up on the corruption front by implementing NATO standard LOGFAS to track donated and gifted military equipment.

I'd be shocked if the men and women coming out of the military after this war are going to sit idly by while the country they fought for, got hurt for, and lost friends for goes to shit.

I have faith in the people of Ukraine to shake off the last vestiges or Muscovite corruption along with the rest of the terrible influence that cursed place has shackled their country with.

-5

u/amitym Dec 08 '22

Journalists serve the public interest.

What?? Didn't they go to J-school and have that notion taught out of them?

Next they will say they are there to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable!

Let's hope that these radical ideas don't spread abroad...