In a world of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act, George Orwell

Indignez-vous ! Stéphane Hessel

“Le courage c’est de chercher la vérité et de la dire ; c’est de ne pas subir la loi du mensonge triomphant qui passe, et de ne pas faire écho, de notre âme, de notre bouche et de nos mains aux applaudissements imbéciles et aux huées fanatiques ”.” – Djordje Kuzmanovic

lundi 26 mai 2014

Article: Synthesis of the crisis in Ukraine 1

Synthesis of the crisis in Ukraine 

Part 1

The fascist government of Kiev which we support ...

The general context 

[Translation from French -]
21 May 2014 In 2010,

Viktor Yanukovytch was elected President of Ukraine for 5 years with 52 percent of votes. The OSCE recognised the perfect validilty of the elections.

The disparity of the results – as in most of the elections – was striking:

 There was a strong gradient from East to West, where the percentage of votes for the elected President went from 95 percent to 5 percent respectively. This emphasizes the big disparity within the country – and therefore its fragility since it has been independent only for 25 years. In fact, it consists of very disparate regions in terms of population, language and history.

 The East, Russian-speaking part, faces towards Russia; while the West looks to the European Union.

 Economical and commercial negotiations

Although Viktor Yanukovytch was mainly elected by the East of Ukraine, the industrial heartland of the country, working with Russia, he decided in 2011 – under the pressure of oligarchs – to successfully conclude the discussions with the EU and to sign an association agreement as well as a free-trade agreement with them, whereas Ukraine already had such agreement with Russia. Let us stress the foolishness of this project:

 1) the Ukrainian economy is fully not competitive with the EU economy. The country is still very far from the level of the same GDP per capita at the time of the USSR!

2) Ukraine being the poorest country in Europe – with a minimum salary of 100 Euros, 30 percent lower than in China! – a free-trade agreement will destroy European employment:

President Yanukovytch was actually hoping to win on both sides – which not at all realistic. Obviously, it did not succeed: on the February 14th, 2013, José Manuel Barroso stated that: “One country cannot at the same time be a member of a customs union and be in an advanced common free-trade area with the EU. This is not possible”. The EU made the mistake to ask Ukraine to choose its “camp”.

Russia then put Ukraine under pressure in summer 2013, by starting to curb its imports in order to protect its economy. The European Commission spokesman John Clancy, declared on 23 August 2013: "any Russian economic threat directed against Ukraine and linked to the country’s possible signing of an association agreement with the EU is unacceptable .".»

These discussions went still on until President Yanukovytch asked the EU 20 billion Euros a year for assistance, the Ukrainian economy gradually going down, and that EU agreed to provide them only 600 million Euros. The French president François Holland declared : “We cannot, as the Ukrainian president wishes it, … pay Ukraine for it to join an association agreement. No, we won’t pay.” Excellent choice, but then why would one want to associate Ukraine to the EU  and to cut it off from Russian influence?
In addition, the IMF set conditions on the payment of a loan to Ukraine to a net decrease of social expenditure, in particular, the level of gas price subsidies, and the privatization of public enterprises.

Additionally, from the summer 2013 onwards, significant debates took place in Ukraine on whether or not to sign this agreement. In particular, the Eastern part of the country was concerned about the significant negative consequences that it would have on their economic activity. Conversely, pro-European NGOs mobilized (especially in Kiev) in October/November to collect hundreds of thousands of signatures for a pro- EU petition.

On 21 November, Yanukovych indicated that it was the signature of the association agreement - a survey indicating that only 35% of the Ukrainians felt he was wrong. He pointed out that he was now seeking a trilateral agreement EU-Ukraine-Russia, and asked that such negotiations to start. A smart enough proposal , however it was brutally rejected by Manuel Barroso : " when we sign a bilateral agreement, we have no need of a trilateral treaty ." »

Putin then replied: "a Ukraine-EU free trade agreement would represent a big threat to us. [This] would result in an increase of unemployment in Russia. […] Should we strangle entire sectors of our economy so that Europe can appreciate us? »

It has to be noted that the European arrogance was astonishing, by refusing to take into account of the interests of the other parties concerned, in a surprising Manichaeism (move).

Take this analogy: it is as if:

             Spain negotiated an agreement of free movement of persons with Algeria,
             France  was concerned by this - having a border with Spain and also an agreement of free movement of   persons (Schengen)
             Suddenly Algeria criticises France by explaining that a third country is not allowed to interfere in a bilateral Algerian-Spanish agreement! Except that when the bilateral agreement has a significant impact on you, you are really a "third country"...

This is not an exaggeration. Former German Chancellors have very great lucidity - some French also:

  •     "Brussels also imposes itself on the world political stage, although most of the Commissioners are not capable. The most recent example is the attempt by the EU Commission to annex the Ukraine. As well as attracting Georgia to it. Need we point out that the Georgia is not in Europe? It's megalomanic, we have nothing to do there! [..] The risk is that the situation is worsening, as in August 1914, it is increasing day by day. [Helmut Schmidt, Bild, 16/05/2014 - to read here in German]

    WAS: "what is the main reason for the worsening of the crisis that we are currently seeing?

  •     Gerhardt Schröder: the fundamental error was the association of EU policy. The EU has ignored that Ukraine is a country deeply divided culturally. South and East of the Ukraine people have always been looking towards Russia, and the West towards the EU. One could speak of an association agreement, but at the same time talking with Russia! "The 'all or nothing' - either the association with the European Union or the customs union with the Russia - was the initial error." [Gerhardt Schröder, WAS, 11/05/2014 - to read here in German] and in French]

    Elkabach: "what games are the Americans playing, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing?

    VGE: It is not clear but they are upholding disorder, they are pushing towards disorder in Ukraine, probably to weaken Russia, but it is a very dangerous game, because we don’t know what...

    Elkabach: You mean that Americans and Obama are creating disorder in Ukraine, it is that what you are saying?

    VGE nods. [Valery Giscard d'Estaing of France, Europe 1, 11/05/2014 - to listen here in French ]

Yanukovych on 17 December 2013 finally signs the agreement with Russia, it agreeing to inject 20 billion $ annually into Ukraine.
The story could have ended there, for the better for Ukraine: an untouched Crimea, avoiding bankruptcy, Ukrainians preserving their social benefits, avoiding the risk of splitting up of a shunned country... And the EU: no competition to €100 per month, no financial support to cover...
But that was counting on without the reaction of nationalists Ukrainians Europhiles from the Western part of the country: small demonstrations called “Euromaidan events” then occurred as soon as the rejection of the agreement with the EU took place. The Ukrainian oligarchs, the EU and the USA then put oil on the EuroMaidan fire...
Indeed, in addition to the demands to be closer to the EU, the crowd (mainly from the Western regions and Kiev), soon ask for the departure of President Yanoukovytch - although legitimately elected. Let’s us recall that if the President was probably corrupt (as were all his predecessors and the vast majority of the Ukrainian political class - this evil gnawing at the country), he was not a dictator. Ukraine was a 'correct' democracy if not perfect, similar to the level of Turkey or Mexico. There was no State violence towards opponents - and free presidential elections would (should) have taken place in 2015 – where the President was also ahead in the first round in the polls with 36% of the vote.

Meanwhile, at the beginning of December, politicians came to Maidan square in Kiev in order to voice support for the demonstrators asking for the resignation of President Yanukovytch : the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland, US Senators John McCain and Chris Murphy, the German Minister of Foreign Affairs Guido Westerwelle, the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird, the Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt, the Vice President of the European Commission Catherine Ashton. The political opposition forces were also received by the European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Stefan Fuele, Angela Merkel, the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Radek Sikorski and the French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius… Political interference?
It was a dangerous game because this movement rekindled tensions between the different parts of the country, obviously very divided.

 Next part - The Coup 

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