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01/28/2002 | Serhiy Hrysch
Dear Sir:
I am writing to you in regard to an outright plagiarism of your article, published in the Foreign Policy Journal's Winter 1999 edition, by a Director of Ukraine's Presidential Administration and a leader of election block "For United Ukraine", Mr. Volodymyr Lytvyn. In a last week's addition of a popular Ukraine's newspaper "Fakty", Mr. Lytvyn has copied your article "Civil Society", translated into Russian, and published it with minor changes under his own name. I am asking and begging you to pursue appropriate actions against Mr. Lytvyn for this horrible act of plagiarism, misrepresentation, copyright infringement, and breach of academic integrity.
I am attaching to this message a sentence by sentence compilation of your and Mr. Lytvyn article. From our analysis, it became clear to us, that that, on numerous occasions, Mr. Lytvyn copied your article word for word. Only once or twice, he allowed some variations. The structure of your presentation was copied prceisely. My colleagues and I believe that the plagiarism of Mr. Lytvyn is than a substantial and sufficient basis for his pursuing in a U.S. court on a number of offenses.
Let me bring it to your attention that Mr. Lytvyn is also a key figure in Ukraine's Kuchmagate scandal. According to tapes recorded at Ukraine's President office last year by Ukraine's security guard Major Melnychenko, Lytvyn is one of the three persons who discussed the elimination of a prominent Ukrainian journalist, Mr. Georgiy Gongadze. As you may know, Mr. Gongadze has disappeared and was killed in September 2000. He was the first victim out of four assassinations leading to deaths of political writers in Ukriane to date. Mr. Lytvyn is an alleged key organizer of Mr. Gongadze's murder.
Currently, Mr. Lytvyn is a leader of an election block "For United Ukraine", a group of political "oligarchs", who flocked around President Kuchma after his crime allegations became public following a publication of Major Melnychenko's revealing tapes. Using administrative power and 'accommodating' ideas of democracy to their often shadow deeds, this group is seeking to 'hijack' Ukraine's Parliament in the next Elections in March 2002. We believe that Mr. Lytvyn, as the one stumbled on so many occasions at ethical and moral issues, should not let go unpunished and uninterrupted.
Mr. Lytvyn is also a holder of high Ukraine's honorary academic degrees and charters, such as a Member of the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences. We believe that designations of an "academic", who copies articles from other authors, should be cancelled. For example, American academia should be aware of the low ethical standards of Mr. Lytvyn and should not refer to him as "Doctor".
Dr. Carpthers, I am a student at an American university. Naturally, I am not able to properly challenge Mr. Lytvyn for his alleged wrongdoings and breach of integrity, except for preparing a couple of articles on the topic for Ukraine's media. But you and your colleagues can. In U.S. schools, both students and faculty are kicked off when they are suspected in minor plagiarism. Please, help Ukrainians kick off this plagiator.
I have discussed the subject with several Ph. D. student friends of mine, including those from John Hopkins University, Harvard University , and Stanford University. We all agree: Mr. Lytvyn should not let operate as he wishes, without holding to the minimal professional standards of public and academic ethics.
Therefore, I would like to ask you to consider bringing Mr. Lytvyn to a U.S. court for plagiarism and copyright infringement. The Foreign Policy journal would probably also be interested in suing Mr. Lytvyn, as well.
I also understand that Mr. Lytvyn is a "big shot" and hold no illusions of the administrative resources Mr. Lytvyn possesses in Ukraine. I also understand that there might be important political issues that are difficult to overcome. But in case it is not possible to sue Mr. Lytvyn, you, your institution, or the Foreign Policy Journal could make statements condemning practices of Mr. Lytvyn. In addition, your institution and the various U.S. academic and government organizations may want to care less about inviting Mr. Lytvyn on various occasions.
The Ukrainian public and media are outraged by Mr. Lytvyn's act. Please, consider legal and public actions concerning Mr. Lytvyn's plagiarism and copyright infringement.
Sincerely,
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