Telling the truth when it matters most

Telling the truth
when it matters most

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Episode 8

Criminalizing Political Opposition

The eighth episode examines the persecution of oppositional political figures and parties in Ukraine. This will include an investigation into politicians who have had their citizenship revoked and their assets confiscated for speaking out against the Zelenskyy regime. 

In the United States, we only have two major parties.. but around the world, this is not normal. In Ukraine… they have over a dozen political parties.. well, they did. After Russia’s invasion in 2022 Vlaidimir Zelenskyy suspended the activities of eleven opposition parties and locked up a number of their leaders. And since then.. that ban has become permanent.


Not only that…hundreds of people who’ve questioned the government form part of an online catalog that many consider to be a kill list.


You can’t make this stuff up.. Lets leave Zelenskyy unmasked.




When Vyctor Yanukovych was ousted from power in 2014… western media and politicians told us it was because he was a corrupt and unwanted leader.


Even though his government was widely considered to be democratically elected, including by its opponents, Yanukovych’s overthrow had somehow become synonymous with democratic action. Western governments and their allied media outlets cheered the protestors on, calling it a revolution of dignity.


One of those supporting the movement was Andreii Telizhenko, a young Ukrainian activist who studied in the United States.


Telizhenko: propaganda got to me…We were told that we’re gonna be in Europe and Yanukovych wants to take Europe away from us…


But Andrii wasn’t just part of the crowd. He was a mover and a shaker in the Maidan movement.


Andrii: I was offered to get a job at the embassy in Washington as a diplomat. I wanted just to work for my country, low-profile job, do my best, and just to live a normal life in a, in a place where I grew up. But, unfortunately, things got unraveled in a different direction.


As Andrii moved up within the ranks of establishment politics, he didn’t like what he found.


Andrii: I thought that I was right… that America wants to take care of us. Unfortunately, it was the opposite. America was using Ukraine…We have a destruction of government, not a building of government…And why are we going against Russia in this? Russia is not even involved in this. You guys are fully controlling us.


These political positions nearly cost him his life.


Telizhenko: I had to flee my country because I was almost going to get killed.

Unfortunately, Andrii isn’t alone. Average Joes who voice their support for Russia in private conversations, or online, are targeted. Even alleged kill lists have been published, which feature those who are considered “enemies of Ukraine” –code for practically anyone who dissents.


MACGREGOR: It resembles increasingly from each passing day Stalinist Russia.


Just two months into the February 2022 invasion, the Associated Press reported that in Kharkiv alone, nearly 400 people had been detained for supposedly collaborating with Russia.


AP gives an example of one so-called collaborator, a middle-aged man named Victor who was arrested by the SBU. His crime was making social media posts sympathetic to Russia.

AP quoted him as saying: “Yes, I supported (the Russian invasion of Ukraine) a lot. I’m sorry…I have already changed my mind.” AP’s reporter wrote that Victor’s voice was trembling as he made this statement while the SBU took him into custody. His fate is unknown.


But Viktor is not alone. More than a year ago, the United Nations stated that there had been at least 91 disappearances and arbitrary detentions since the 2022 invasion.


Telizhenko: A lot of people do want peace and people are afraid that this war is going to continue for a long time. And people are fed up with what Zelensky is doing, but they’re afraid to talk because they know they will get punished.


Soon after the February 2022 invasion, Zelensky suspended the activities of eleven opposition parties and locked up a number of their leaders. The largest suspended party was that of Ukrainian billionaire and politician Viktor Medvedchuk, a Russian ally.


Medvedchuk’s party, The Opposition Platform—for Life, held 10% of parliamentary seats before they were suspended. Medvechuk was imprisoned before forming part of a prisoner swap with Russia. Here’s Medvechuk’s wife giving a press conference where she said he was being tortured by the SBU.


Soon after this debacle, Kiev’s parliament and courts made the suspensions permanent.


Kotsaba: Do you understand what kind of madness is going on in society? That people are afraid, they suffer from the war, but they are afraid to talk about it in their kitchen. This is totalitarianism, a dictatorship.


But this is a totalitarian dictatorship made for the digital age. Medvechuk, and many others, form part of what many believe to be an online kill list, called the Myrotvorets (Meer-dot-vore-ehts) Center.

The website claims to be based out of Langley, VA –the home of CIA headquarters—and Warsaw, Poland. It has compiled a list of supposed enemies of Ukraine and features many addresses and telephone numbers. Some of those on the list, like the late Russian political activist, Darya Dugina (Doo-Jee-Nah), are still searchable on the database, but with a stamp over their photo, which reads “liquidated.” The 29-year-old Dugina was killed by a car bomb in Moscow in August of 2022.


Reade: I talked personally to Faina Savenkova. But she’s on this kill list with a three Hundred and 37 other children.



“Back in 2014, Ukrainian warplanes raided my hometown, dropped bombs on our homes and shelled us, killing many adults and children. Back then, our parents had to take up weapons to protect our lives…I wish the United Nations would remember that we, the Donbass children, also have the right to childhood and a peaceful life.”


In the year we have investigated what happened in Ukraine, we have clearly found if you speak out against the government on social media, at work, at home, or at school, you risk your freedom and even your life. That is the country our government and our tax dollars are creating. But persecution in Ukraine isn’t limited to just politics. Next time we’ll expose the shutdown of religion and Zelensky’s war against Ukraine’s Orthodox Church. As we continue to leave Zelenskyy Unmasked.

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