A key issue that will decide the future of the country is being settled – will Poroshenko cave in under the pressure of the EU and the US along with the parliamentary factions Samopomich and RP to change the constitution of Ukraine?
Worth reading opinion by Yuriy Romanenko for Ukrainian online outlet hvylya.
I am 100% sure that the United States and Europe do not understand the devastating effects an amendment to the constitution, endowing special status to the Donbas, will have.
The likelihood that a barter between Putin and Obama would be reached in regard to Ukraine had been written about long before the events in the Donbas, but right now the western elites are determined to find a quick way to neutralize the ulcer that is Donbas, even if it takes agreeing to the terms Russia has put forward. The reason the west is ready to participate on Russia’s terms is because Kyiv lacks the leadership required to fulfill agreements and to raise Ukraine to being a viable state. Thus patience is running thin both in the US and in Europe as Nikolai Vorobiev recently wrote in two articles: “Was A Deal Made Between the US and Russia on Iran and Ukraine?” and “Operation Anaconda: Prospects for Ukraine in the Context of Washington Bullying the Russian Bear.”
There is no question that Ukraine desperately needs peace, inasmuch as its economy is collapsing, while the mobilization of troops under existing inefficient state management is becoming an additional factor in the destabilization of the country. Freezing the conflict in eastern Ukraine has its clear advantages, but the key issues that have to be considered are what price will Ukraine pay for freezing the conflict and what will be the consequences.
Therefore, rushing into something that would have a dire outcome not just for Ukraine, but for Europe, too, is unwise.
What we are faced with now:
1. If we add amendments to the constitution formulated to fit the demands of the LNR and the DNR it will mean that we AUTOMATICALLY ACCEPT the Donbas as Ukraine’s domestic problem. It means that compensation for the destruction of the Donbas will never be paid by Russia.
2. We will automatically be forced to assume subsidizing the LNR and the DNR. Let me remind you that in 2013 40 billion UAH were spent in the Donbas. At today’s rates that would be 120 billion UAH per year. AND THAT WOULD BE FOR A STABLE DONBAS. How much will Donbas cost Kyiv AS A SEPARATIST ENCLAVE THAT UNDER THE MINSK AGREEMENTS HAS A RIGHT TO ITS OWN INDEPENDENT POLICE FORCE, ITS OWN JUDICIARY, TO CONDUCT FOREIGN RELATIONS, AND SPECIAL STATUS VIS À VIS RUSSIA?
Who will finance this wonderful place in the coming years? Angela Merkel? Barack Obama, who in six months will be retired? How much are the peacemakers willing to spend on the Zakharchenko and Plotnytskyi trap? Several hundred million? Several billion dollars? How many years are they prepared to spend pacifying Putin in the Donbas? We do not know. YET WE ARE BEING FORCED TO ACCEPT CONCRETE OBLIGATIONS TO THE DONBAS FOR DECADES TO COME. Brussels and Washington have taken a great position indeed.
3. We are obligated to grant amnesty to Zakharchenko and Plotnytskyi, and what’s more, we are obligated to grant them a seat in Parliament. I would not rule out a cozy seat on Bankova Street [Presidential Administration] in addition. After all, they are citizens of Ukraine. They have rights. They will tell us how do build a democracy to the sounds of Auntie Merkel and Uncle Obama clapping.
An excellent ‘peace plan,’ if you ask me. But I am sure the consequences will be different than what Washington and Brussels had in mind. We will end up like Iraq where with the support of global powers competing groups are waging war. And how did that start? The global powers had come to the conclusion that a terrified Saddam decided to build an atom bomb. It turned out they were wrong. It happens, you know. Now they’re scratching their heads how to get rid or ISIS which developed as a consequence of that tragic mistake.
Our situation is similar. We are being urged to preserve the Centaur and his Second Ukrainian republic. Where the incompetence of the Centaur will ensure that the spheres of influence will stay put. And that will satisfy the foreign players. But if the situation were to change the Centaur will be put under the knife just like the Syrians and the Libyans were. To put it simply, what we are being offered is endless horror.
What about our interests?
Why don’t we just admit that the Donbas is not in our interest. Accept that the Centaur is unsustainable. That a ‘united Ukraine’ is dead but a new Ukraine must be born: a focused, determined Ukraine, working together in a common direction, where a government official can clearly state what Russia means for Ukraine – call it what it is, friend or foe – who is to be blamed for the war in the Donbas, who annexed Crimea, who our heroes are, and where we are heading. And once we take the Donbas out of the picture we will take a step away from becoming the ‘Iraq of Eastern Europe.’
In the meantime we are heading in the wrong direction: we are preserving a state of paralysis which will generate poverty which will generate hatred and domestic enemies who will lead the country into all out war and Ukraine will disappear just like Iraq has disappeared.
What’s the point of all that death-bearing geopolitics? Only to keep ‘occupied Donbas’ part of Ukraine? Or just to preserve the status quo, benefiting the foreign players who are afraid of leaving their ‘comfort zones’ and have forgotten the words of Churchill: “peacemakers feed the crocodile hoping that the crocodile will eat them last.”
These are far from rhetorical questions.
EMPR, O. R. contributed to this publication