13. FLAWS OF MENTALITY

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Sergiy Sorkoa
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, December 26, 2005

While analysing the events of the November – December of the last year
some experts conclude, that the ‘Orange Revolution’ was not a revolution
as such, considering its main features: it did not bring about a change to
socio – political system in the country, nor has it changed the elites in
the society.

However, by predicting the events that would develop after March the 26th,
2006, it can be asserted that the elections to councils at all levels in the
Ukraine could attain the signs of a Revolution.

The elections would reinforce the political reform, which legally starts
acting on the 1st of January, 2006, but factually after the finalisation of
the election results.

As a result of this the socio – political system will change from
presidential – parliamentary to parliamentary – presidential and also a
substantial change in political elites would occur.

As early as in 1999 Zbigniew Brzezinski predicted, that during President
Kuchma’s second term elites in Ukrainian politics will change. At the top
echelons of Ukrainian ruling establishment, representatives of ex-
communist party nomenclature and red directors would be replaced by
a new wave of managers and economists.

During the years of 1999 – 2004, that’s what happened, new politicians such
as Yushchenko, Timoshenko, Yanukovich, Medvedchuk, Yekhanurov and
others, reached the highest offices in the state and are now defining the
rules of the Ukrainian political Olympus.

However, at the time, and even now, all of them worked in the political
system created by Kuchma and often themselves helped along to the
creation of such state governing mechanism.

Next year on the 26th of March there would not only be a substantial
alteration of the ruling establishment at all levels ( by 30 – 40% in the
Parliament (Verhovna Rada) and by 50 – 80% in the local councils), but a
change in the system of government itself.

At the moment, the Ukrainian society is unsure of where it is heading. Not
least of all because of the array of interests of the internal political
groups and foreign geopolitical interests of Russia, USA, EU and Poland,
who all in one way or another are connected to Ukraine.

Unfortunately, the weakness and irresoluteness of the current authorities in
Ukraine act as an incentive for interest in the elections not only of the
Ukrainians but also of close and not so close neighbours.

Right now the competing sides are just taking up the starting positions on
the field of the political game that will ensue in Ukraine during the
winter – spring of 2006.

Although, there were already diversionary moves and artillery preparation in
the shape of the petrol and the sugar crisis, the corruption scandal, the
dismissal of the Timoshenko’s government and the struggle for the 2006
budget.

In turn, declarations came from the USA about the abolition of the Jackson –
Vennik amendment and there is the EU declaration on giving the Ukraine the
status of the market economy, and finally the powerful ‘gas attack’ directed
at Ukraine from the Russian side. It can be stated with assuredness, just
watch what will happen next!

All of the sides of this game understand, that Ukraine before and after
March 2006 – will be two different entities. Each one of the sides of the
political game has its own vision of how Ukraine should look in 2006.

Hence again, as always – “this is our last and most decisive battle”! Thus,
yet again, the Ukrainians will be divided into the reds and the whites, the
orange ones and the blue ones, the easterners and the benderovtsi, the rich
and the poor, the Europeans and the Asians, the patriots and the traitors,
the pro-Russian and the pro-American, the Ukrainian speaking and the
Russian speaking ones.

It appears, that the Ukrainians should step aside for a moment from these
passions and have a look at battles, concerning their own country, raging
between Russia and the USA, Poland and Belarus, communists and anti –
communists, the right wing and the left wing ones.

Then, like in a joke: the forest-keeper came and kicked everyone out.

Most bewildering is the Russian position, who does not learn and it appears
does not want to learn from its own strategic foreign policy mistakes.

What benefit does Russia reap from its empire-building missionary role?
Billions and billions of dollars have gone to waste for nothing, – on
supporting a worldwide revolution, in support of the red and the pink
regimes in Africa and Latin America and in support of abhorrent modern
regimes of Lukashenko and Karimov.

Millions of Russian lives were lost for no apparent reason in Korea,
Vietnam, Afghanistan and Chechnya.

Are the average Russian citizens together with the wise and mighty Vladimir
Vladimirovich unable, without bias, to answer the question: why every
country that in their history had the misfortune to encounter Russia’s
assistance puts its uttermost efforts to keep away from Russia?

Why almost all of the Russian neighbours (with the exception of not very
democratic and dependant regimes), are unfriendly towards it, such are the
Baltic countries, Eastern European states, Georgia and Azerbajdjan? Why
Russia without a thought but with the stubborn determination pushes
Ukraine to join attitudes of these countries?

What did Russia loose, when the Baltic and Eastern European countries
entered NATO and EU? Did the Russian security suffer at all or did
Russia loose out economically in any way?

If Russia desires a counter revolution in Ukraine, it will get such a
revolution that the distance already separating it from Ukraine would be
furthered by yet another two steps.

Still, during the Soviet era, a journalist from one of the papers decided to
investigate the differences in the mentality of the inhabitants of Moscow,
then still Leningrad (St Petersburg) and Kiev, by a way of a simple
experiment: what an average person from those cities, while in the public
transport, would do if somebody stubbornly tried to pressure them out
of their standing place.

The results were as follows: the inhabitants of Moscow, usually quite
vociferously, entered into a confrontation. People from Leningrad
apologised and offered the place to one another.

As a rule however, Kiev’s residents silently used their arms and legs to
stubbornly hold their places and stood firm. Notably, the harder they
were pushed the more stubborn their resistance grew.

Our and foreign politicians, still have not understood: the harder you
pressure the Ukrainians the more vigour there will be in their opposition.
(Translated by Vladyslav Kostyuk)

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