It seems that the Crimean peninsula is on its way out of Ukraine – yesterday over 90% of its people voted in a referendum to secede.
There has been a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth in the West as a result of the latest developments. The coup in Kiev, initiated by the “peaceful” street crowds (which for some reason were well armed), wasn’t seen in the area as another glorious expansion of the “Western values.” On the contrary, Russia met it with hostility as an action, which endangers its interests in the region.
As it often happens in times of turmoil, the Jewish issues were brought into the spotlight. After the reports of new anti-Semitic actions in the country, an article in Israel Times – “Will Ukraine’s Real Anti-Semite Please Stand Up” – tries to find an impartial answer. The incidents are blamed on Putin and the Jewish leaders of Ukraine try to downplay the local Jew-hatred. This is a very short-sighted approach.
During its history, including the periods of independence, Ukraine (just like Russia) has had a long record of anti-Semitism. Discrimination and pogroms have been a part of the Jewish life there. That was one of the reasons that the Jews supported the Lenin’s government, which promised equality. As a later reaction, under Stalin, the Ukrainians blamed the Jews for their misfortunes, though Stalin wasn’t fond of the Jews either.
When Hitler invaded Ukraine, many local people took willingly part in the extermination of the Jews. Even in the ideology of the Ukrainian nationalism, anti-Semitism played a major role. The writings of Dmytro Dontsov of the 1920’s eerily resemble the doctrines of Hitler, with the cult of the strong leader and the purity of the nation. Shortly before the invasion, Stepan Bandera formed a government that was willing to collaborate with Hitler. Hitler, however, had different plans for Ukraine and sent Bandera and his comrades to Sachsenhausen. Although nominally a concentration camp, the place was a far cry from Auschwitz or Treblinka. It kept in relatively good conditions people that Hitler thought he could use in the future. Bandera and all his Ukrainians survived the camp.
The purpose of this short historical reference was to show that the simplistic interpretation of history and political reality by media and politicians usually leads to wrong decisions. The narrative that the Western media is selling now is that the freedom-loving people of Ukraine have rebelled and the evil Russia wants to crush their yearnings.
The ugly truth is that no matter how much they yearn for freedom, not much is going to change. The West sees things in a delusional way – if they support hard enough a politician, party or some progressive forces – that would change the country. (They never learned from the fiascos in Afghanistan and Iraq.)
The problem is that most of Eastern Europe (with the possible exception of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and the Baltic states) is ruled by a political class, which may create the impression of active political life with many parties. However, the truth is that all those parties have the same goal – enriching themselves through participation in the government. It doesn’t help that among their population the self-reliance principle is not that popular. The vast majority of people wait for a government or an external force to resolve their problems.
It is impossible to have a democratic state without strong economy, which doesn’t depend on government handouts. The vast majority of the Eastern European countries (including the EU members Bulgaria and Romania) lack those conditions.
Ukraine hasn’t developed any industry after the collapse of the Soviet Union. All of its shady billionaires amassed their fortunes from energy deals with Russia. The political and economic structures of Ukraine and Russia are exactly the same.
The “epic” Maidan battle in Kiev was presented in the media as a war between those who want to direct Ukraine to the European Union and the pro-Russian forces. The pro-Western people actually expect that as soon as they swear their allegiance to the European Union, there will be a flood of money, know-how and influence to change their society. That was the delusion in Bulgaria and Romania – they expected that after joining the Union, the poverty and corruption will disappear, as if chased away by Harry Potter’s magic wand.
It didn’t work that way – Bulgaria and Romania are still poor, with corrupt politicians and judges. The only difference is that now they can blame Soros, the Rothschilds, and the Elders of Zion for enslaving them through the Union.
Do the Union politicians think of that when they give false hopes to Ukraine?
There is no way that the European Union could deliver on any of its promises. Compared to Bulgaria and Romania, Ukraine is a huge country. The Union is broke, as the attempt to “save” Greece, another small country, showed. Ukraine doesn’t qualify for membership in any way.
Not only did the EU squander its money on working with countries, which have no chance of reaching the level of its most developed members, but it is also overburdened by illiterate third-world invaders, who would never integrate successfully.
And who is going to lead Ukraine on the “way to Europe”? The picture above shows the most popular politicians, one of whom is going to win the president elections. As you can see, the extremists are not the major danger – the communist and the “Social-Nationalist” are at the bottom.
The trouble is that all main contenders belong to the oligarchic establishment, including the Gas Princess Tymoshenko, who already did time. They are not that different from the ousted president Yanukovich. They all preside over the same unchangeable bureaucracy.
Any financial aid provided to Ukraine by the EU or IMF, which doesn’t go directly to the lenders, will disappear in the deep pockets of the Ukrainian politicians. Actually we have seen that before – do you remember the “Orange Revolution”?
It was all about opposing Russia and turning toward Europe. It brought to power Yushchenko and Tymoshenko. When people realized that their lives didn’t improve, they dropped them and elected Yanukovich. Now they have come around a full circle – turning to Europe again.
You can bet that in two years they’ll be in Kiev again, rioting against the “European traitors.”
There is nothing that the West could do to resolve the Ukrainian problems. The only solution could result from within the Ukrainian society – if it gradually evolves by itself, it may change its corrupt political and economic structure.
Other than throwing tons of money in the Ukrainian black hole, the West is also obsessed with stopping the secession of Crimea. Some even want a military intervention. Again, we see a simplistic approach, which is unlikely to be applied because of the chronic weakness of NATO and the decline of the USA under Obama.
The present Ukrainian state is an artificial formation of several geographic and ethnic regions, some of which have never been a part of Ukraine, like most of the western part and specifically Galicia and Bukovina. The same applies to Crimea, it was a gift to the Ukrainian SSR from Khrushchev. It is no wonder that facing the coming turmoil, the mostly Russian population of the peninsula wants out.
The West has no moral right to interfere after the disgraceful intervention in Kosovo. Based on false information, NATO bombed Belgrade to force Serbia to surrender its province killing in the process hundreds of innocent people. All atrocities of the Albanian Muslim savages against the Serbs were ignored, although many of them came out after the conflict ended.
It’s an ultimate hypocrisy when the same countries want to attack after a referendum for a peaceful separation. Unlike the helpless Serbia, Russia is much tougher and so far nobody has been able to defeat it on its own territory.
A possible angle the West is trying to exploit is the Tatar minority in Crimea. They are the remnants of the people that terrorized for centuries the neighbouring countries (mostly Byzantium, Russia, Bulgaria and Romania). During World War II they actively collaborated with Hitler in the extermination of Jews and Russians, which ended with their deportation after the war.
Now it is reported that if Crimea becomes a part of Russia, many Tatars threaten to launch jihad. There is nothing unusual here – just Muslims doing what they do best: threatening and killing.
It is strange to see Canada getting so involved in the conflict. It is not clear yet what kind of people are in the new Ukrainian government and if they could be trusted at all. Yet we saw Canada’s foreign minister John Baird roaming the square in Kiev with a scarf featuring the Ukrainian flag’s colours.
It mind sound harsh, but the West must solve its problems first, before wasting the money it borrows to interfere in other countries’ affairs. Demonizing Russia doesn’t help either. Putin’s “dictatorship” is farcical at best and he doesn’t have the level of control over the country, which even Brezhnev had during the USSR’s years of decay.
Comparing Putin with Hitler is equally stupid – he has neither the resources, nor the ideology, nor the desire to become the new conqueror of Europe. Just like in the case of Czechoslovakia, all incompatible peoples of Ukraine should be allowed to decide their own future.
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