Ukraine Interim Govt Courts Oligarchs, Neo-Fascists

Right Sector Chief to Run for President

While the initial installation of an interim government in the Ukraine centered around long-standing allies of Yulia Tymoshenko, the government’s effort to curry favor with protesters and secure influence in eastern areas with secessionist ambitions has them courting two factions for their government, the neo-fascist Right Sector and the powerful oligarchs.

The Right Sector was hugely influential within the protest movement, and has gone from a virtual non-player politically, dismissed as neo-Nazi linked thugs, to a major player in the new Ukraine which styles itself a “youth patriot organization.

Their leader, Dmytro Yarosh, made headlines over the weekend for urging Chechen terrorist leaders to launch strikes on Russia, presenting them as ideal allies for the new Ukraine. Now, he’s running for president, and while it’s not clear if he’s the front-runner at this point, he is considered a credible candidate with a legitimate shot at winning.

The Right Sector won a lot of credibility in the west for its violent role in the protests, but in the far east, where ethnic Russians dominate, it is billionaire oligarchs that are getting appointed in hopes of tamping down the secessionist fervor that’s got Crimea just over a week from a referendum for independence.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.