The facts suggest that the recent scandal around the foreign trip of MP Mykola Tishchenko may be nothing more than another discrediting campaign aimed at weakening the Ukrainian authorities and devoid of any evidence, writes Gary Cartwright.
The goal of the campaign is to divert attention from real steps to further eradicate corruption and fight the oligarchs in Ukraine. Thanks to outside efforts, the world is forced to discuss not such events in Ukraine as the searches of Igor Kolomoisky in the Ukrnafta case, searches in the Tax Service and the dismissal of the entire senior staff of the Ukrainian customs, but an old video of Tishchenko, taken on vacation several years ago.
Until recently, Mykola Tishchenko is the deputy head of the presidential faction Servant of the People. He is also the head of the parliamentary temporary investigative commission, which deals with corruption related to the use of subsoil, forests, etc. Before the war, Tishchenko gained fame for fighting the amber mafia and the timber mafia, which deprived the Ukrainian budget of millions of dollars. In these positions, Tishchenko could make many influential enemies. Some of them he names directly:
The possible performance by Mykola Tishchenko of any unobvious tasks abroad deserves separate attention. Tishchenko’s work abroad looks far from accidental. Before entering politics, Tishchenko was a well-known public figure and entrepreneur, a long-time friend of the most famous British chef Gordon Ramsay. Before that, he represented Ukraine in many famous international TV projects – Fort Boyard (France), Wipeout (Argentina). It looks like after the beginning of his political career he is using his earlier connections to help Ukraine and Ukrainians abroad. And today he has once again become the target of a discredit campaign, the purpose of which is to weaken the Ukrainian government and prevent further cleansing of the team.
It looks very plausible that Tishchenko could have been instructed to establish shadow contacts with the governments of Thailand and Vietnam, countries in Southeast Asia that have significant military potential. It should be noted that this region is traditionally considered “pro-Russian” because it is reluctant to participate in sanctions against Russia, and Thailand has many tourists from Russia.
And now, during such a trip, the media publishes information that a representative of the presidential party, Tishchenko, is in Thailand on vacation. Not only does such a report appear in dozens of media outlets simultaneously, but it is also illustrated by a corresponding video, even though it turns out later that such a video is five years old.
Again, the scandal with Ukrainian MP Tishchenko looks completely artificial. The fact that this is a planned campaign to discredit one of Ukraine’s top politicians is also confirmed by the fact that a YouTube account was identified that was distributing that old video of Tishchenko, passing it off as a video from 2023. Who benefits from Ukraine’s efforts to forge closer ties in Southeast Asia going to waste? The answer is obvious: Russia.
Journalists from the French TV channel France 24 agree with this conclusion, and they say directly that the video that discredited Mykola Tishchenko is a video from 2019. And it was this video that was used by Russian propaganda and Ukrainian journalists, who did not understand its origin, to inflame public opinion, which eventually led to the dismissal of Tishchenko.
As a result, the main fact remains that the Russian special services seem to have succeeded in weakening the Ukrainian parliament and discrediting a strong Ukrainian politician. At the same time, the phenomenon of Tishchenko is precisely the fact that before that he constantly had opponents who tried to conduct discrediting campaigns against him, but in reality everything ended at the level of paid discussions on the Internet and paid materials in the media.
The Author, Gary Cartwright, is the Editor and Publisher of EU Today.