Twenty-six years overdue: the “what now?” moment for Ukraine is here


October 30 , 2017 – Fort Russ News – 

 Op-ed – translated by Inessa Sinchougova

Whether Ukrainians want to admit it or not, but the format in which their state existed before February 2014, it could not continue to exist. And the problem is not in Putin, but in the Ukrainians themselves. For nearly three decades, they have demonstrated their qualities so vividly that now they cause not only dislike among many Russians but also contempt. For the purposes of this article, I will clarify that when I refer to “Ukrainians” I mean not only those in charge, but a large segment of the public population in Western Ukraine, with exceptions that exist in all cases and on all subjects. 

To reconcile the two parts of the split Ukraine will not work, similarly as it will not work to ‘Ukrainianize’ the Russian population. For this, the main idea propagators have no means, no strategy and no time. Nationalists can frighten the population, but they cannot force people to like them. And this in itself will further split the country.

In 1991, Ukrainians received into their possession a huge fragment of the Soviet empire with a multinational population. The policy of the newborn state was to be carried out accordingly.

However, Ukrainians by their nature are not Imperials, but a national minority with somewhat of an inferiority complex, if that can be said in a politically-correct world. To take into account the interests of other nations, to appreciate the cultural diversity of the country is not something they are able to do because of the lack of historical experience in the construction of the state.

They saw how it should be, but did not know how to build it.

They can object to me and say that many nations did not have the experience of creating a state, but they did create it! Indeed, on the political map of the world there are Slovakia, Romania or the Czech Republic, which were formerly part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. But among all the imperial wreckage – Ukraine was most unlucky, because it bordered Russia.

Three factors predetermined the split of Ukraine. First were the anti-Russian and anti-Russian forces supported by the West in order to prevent Ukraine from being within Russia’s orbit. The problem here was that Ukraine was overall economically and spiritually tied to Russia.

That is, even if Moscow wanted to get rid of Kiev – there is nowhere to go. This is the piece of the puzzle that either is built into Russian statehood, or is not built anywhere.

Secondly, the elite of Ukraine worked on the split, which used national and civilizational contradictions in political struggle with each other. Since people are designed in such a way that they will use the easiest ways to obtain a goal – if the basic national card is there, they will play it. And they played it badly.

Thirdly, Ukraine was doomed to struggle against Russian culture and language because of its non-competitiveness. In an equal comparison, Ukrainian culture and language do not stand a chance. As an example, you can look at Belarus, where, with all the diligence of the leadership, the Belarusian culture and language failed to develop to the Russian level. Lukashenko preferred to pick his battles in order to save the state – Ukrainian characters chose a different path and made the country’s split inevitable.

Within the contextual parameters of 1991, Ukraine could exist only as a part of Russia. However, that ship has sailed. 

“Russian occupation” is not a threat to them. Even if all the citizens rose up in one voice and sang “Unbreakable Union …” (former Soviet anthem lyrics) then this would not change anything. This is not only too expensive and burdensome for the Russian budget, but it can significantly complicate relations with Russia’s allies – Belarus and Kazakhstan.

Only crazy patriots can believe that Russia seeks to recreate the Soviet Union. A Union of a different sort perhaps, but definitely not a Soviet Union in its former understanding.

Moscow is not going to solve the “national question” in Ukraine, to fully support Ukrainian culture and language, as was in fact the case in the USSR. Moscow is not going to revive the Ukrainian economy, as it is costly. Russia will draw personal success and prosperity into its orbit. Actually, this is already happening, as evidenced by millions of economic migrants/ labour force into Russia from Ukraine.

All that the Kremlin wants to achieve is to end the civil war and reformat the Ukrainian state in such a way that it is not a source of constant headache. Russia is persistently seeking the confederalization of Ukraine, since in this format humanitarian issues will be solved in the subjects of the confederation, and geopolitical choices will be determined by the economy.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union in Ukraine, there was a paradoxical situation in which the budget was responsible for the industrialized south-eastern regions, and geopolitical choice and humanitarian policy was determined by the backward central and western parts of the country.

Confederalization can eliminate this contradiction. Novorossia could have the opportunity to develop in close financial and economic interaction with Russia. Historical Malorossia could become an agrarian superpower. Western Ukraine, if it does not join Poland after all the cataclysms, can become a supplier of cheap labor to Europe.

Green – Novorossia

Yellow- Malorossia

Red – Historical Galicia 

And now think, which region is more likely to recover? The answer to this question has long been known. The Russian-speaking south-east will absolutely not care about the raging patriots elsewhere in the country – and we may find, they too would disappear. When it comes to money, all their nationalist anger would burn out. They would become polite and courteous based on basic survival instincts.

Ukrainians do not like my prediction. They dream that as a result of some effective reforms, Western aid or another revolution on their land, prosperity will come. Discussing this nonsense based on the basic historical precedents is not interesting.

All is more than obvious – Ukraine is a zone of leading decay. Nobody wants to bother with it already, neither the West, nor even the Ukrainians themselves. To understand this is so, it is enough to listen to what the Europeans say. Nothing optimistic there.

You can certainly call the President of the Czech Republic Miloš Zeman a marginal politician, “whom the Kremlin bought”. But when he made his statement about the “sale” of the Crimea to Russia, he spoke as an optimistic realist. The Crimean issue is closed – it is part of the Russian Federation. Sanctions do not produce hard impact on Russia, but they significantly harm European business. This is already openly written about by the Western press, with idiotic bewilderment counting the losses of the EU countries; 30 billion euros! 

The Ukrainian authorities viewed Russophobia as a liquid commodity, which will always be in demand. Europe viewed Ukraine as a transit zone through which it is possible to enter the Russian market. For America, Ukraine was a territory that could become an insurmountable obstacle to the partnership between Europe and Russia.

However, once Russia quit the game, the whole scheme broke down. “The Product” is rotten and no one needed it anymore. Now Russia can only wait and see how Western strategists will solve the Ukrainian problem.

It’s funny, Ukrainians are talking up some European values, unlike those of barbarous Russia. They think of themselves as the European people, without even realizing what impression their antics produce in “civilized” Europe. This is evident from the level of politicians as well as the average Ukrainian in Europe, well acquainted to cheap labor and prostitution.

All ‘brotherly nations’ should be aware that the only value that exists in the West is money. Ukraine does not have any. Ukraine turned from an asset into a liability for all parties. But even in this case – as the old Russian saying goes – “One old friend is better than two new ones.”

Russia has money and it has leverage with the West. This is what will be the point of discussion in the future, and Ukraine will become a bargaining chip. It remains only to wait for the convenient moment when the Ukrainian nationalists will arrange their next trick, and under this pretext attempt to further divide the next pieces.

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