Behind incessant rhetorical invocations of a „democratic revolution,“ Ukraine’s newly-installed government of former bankers, fascists and oligarchs is preparing draconian austerity measures.

The plans being drawn up are openly described as the „Greek model,“ i.e., the programme of savage cuts imposed on Greece by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and European Union (EU) that has caused Greece’s economy to collapse by nearly 25 percent in five years and produced a massive growth in unemployment and poverty.

In the case of Ukraine, however, this social devastation is to be unleashed against a country that has already been subjected to the scorched earth economics of capitalist restoration. Even before the latest events, Ukraine was the 80th poorest country in the world based on gross domestic product per capita, behind Iraq, Tonga and Bosnia-Herzegovina. […]

The former Stalinist bureaucrats and mafia-oligarchs who enriched themselves by stealing former state property have continued all the while to plunder state assets and pile up even greater personal fortunes. […]

A 10 percent collapse in GDP is publicly spoken of by economists. Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, handpicked by Washington to replace the ousted elected president, Viktor Yanukovych, has stated baldly that he will be „the most unpopular prime minister in the history of my country.“ […]

His comments shed light on why the US and the EU powers are so willing to sign off on a government staffed by fascists and extreme-right paramilitaries. On Thursday, the Ukrainian parliament voted to establish a 60,000-strong National Guard recruited from ‚activists‘ in the anti-Russian protests and from military academies.

The force will be overseen by the new security chief, Andriy Parubiy, a founder in the early 1990s of the neo-Nazi Social-National Party of Ukraine. His deputy, Dmytro Yarosh, is the leader of the paramilitary Right Sector. It is the Ukrainian equivalent of Hitler’s storm troopers.

In addition to aiding the West in its provocations against Moscow, the main responsibility of these elements will be to carry through a social onslaught against the Ukrainian working class at the behest of international capital.

Extracts from: Julie Hyland, „What the Western-backed regime is planning for Ukrainian workers“ (wsws.org, 15 Marc 2014)