Thursday, 1 May 2014

Ukraine - FAQs

Just picking up a few of the questions that appear in the MSM this week; 

IMF in Ukraine - Mr Nice or Nasty?(BBC) - As the emerging Balkan states have found, the IMF is like a payday loan shark on a global scale. Ukraine will sign the form to get the money to meet this week's state paybill, and will only later regret signing away its ability to make decisions about its own economy. The IMF means global servitude. 

Is Moscow orchestrating eastern Ukraine's little green men? (BBC) - Of course. Russian 'advisors' are probably ultra-careful to disappear when the news cameras turn up, but the orchestrated sequence of occupations in Donetsk and Luhansk, and now in Kharkhiv, indicate a strategic mind at work rather than spontaneous popular actions. 
Has the idle West let Putin win?(Telegraph) - It's not the west's idleness that has led to the loss of Crimea, and possibly the eastern provinces, but the west's stupidity in believing they could drive their tanks onto Russia's lawn with impunity. 

Why have a fight over east Ukraine? - The east has the industry and natural resources, including 2 trillion cubic metres of frackable gas. Look at Timoshenko's corruptly acquired portfolio, and those of her fellow Ukrainian oligarchs - it's their vast wealth, much of tied up in the east of the country, that they're keen to protect; they will lay down the lives of their Ukrainian subjects for the sake of their Swiss bank accounts.

Will the crisis lead to World War Three? - Hopefully not. However, the US, EU and Russia are on course to turn it into a vicious proxy war, with both sides pouring in arms, equipment and intelligence. Good for the global corporations, useful for each side to test out its newest technologies but of course ruinous for the folk that live there and who just want to get on with their lives. 

Who can I believe about what's going on? -  No-one. Both the west and Russia are effectively churning out propaganda that easily fools the majority of inexperienced journos. As Richard North has pointed out, the crisis is being reported by muppets who can't tell the difference between a battle tank and an APC, and for whom every AK74 is an AK47.  

Seamus Milne gets close to an accurate summary of the situation in the Guardian today;
The reality is that, after two decades of eastward Nato expansion, this crisis was triggered by the west's attempt to pull Ukraine decisively into its orbit and defence structure, via an explicitly anti-Moscow EU association agreement. Its rejection led to the Maidan protests and the installation of an anti-Russian administration – rejected by half the country – that went on to sign the EU and International Monetary Fund agreements regardless.

No Russian government could have acquiesced in such a threat from territory that was at the heart of both Russia and the Soviet Union. Putin's absorption of Crimea and support for the rebellion in eastern Ukraine is clearly defensive, and the red line now drawn: the east of Ukraine, at least, is not going to be swallowed up by Nato or the EU.


Nick Drew said...

a strategic mind at work rather than spontaneous popular actions

even more than just a chess-playing strategist: it's a well-prepared one

just as Putin has his 'Nashi' lined up against the slightest hint of domestic unrest, so he has well-established contingency plans for the near-abroad

and it's not at all unwelcome to him for everyone to see

there's still the awkward question of how much it will cost his economy (but BP is in a sticky position just now ...)

Budgie said...

If only the Scots were as patriotic towards the UK as the Russian-speaking Ukrainians are towards Russia.

Anonymous said...

The EU called it wrong. Why on earth would the EU want Ukraine in it's membership when Ukraine is smashed-bust; it's banks are bust, it's central and local governments are bust - it's worse than Greece FFS! We (and I don't mean the populations within the EU) have been caught out red-handed parking our tanks on Russia's lawn. Worse than that, Putin knows how stupid the EU commissariat is and how strategically weak we currently are. Worse than that still (if it could be worse!) is that we have gone along with the idea since the fall of the Berlin wall that Russia is now our friend. We tied ourselves into deals on energy trade that will be the devil to unwind, and we let Gazprom dictate terms right in our heartlands and in fact we allowed Putin to park his corporate tanks on *our* lawn. Our EU governments have been unbelievably STUPID!!

Coney Island

Anonymous said...

Coney Island, Radders, Seamus Milne, thank you all for confirming my thoughts on this Ukrainian debacle.

And indeed it will, become a very nasty proxy war, it is for the western Ukraine to back down accede to Moscow [Kerry, Obummer and the USA need to get on board this bus] and allow Vlad to bring a semi autonomous Donbas region back into the embrace of Mama Russia and anything else, will mean war.

Elby the Beserk said...

Seamus Milne, that exquisitely English product, a Wykehamist Marxist, has written some of the most egregious bollocks for a paper renowned for such. However, even a broken clock is right twice a day, and this time, Seamus, writing about Ukraine, seems to me to have it right. Tip of the hat to him for that.

Elby the Beserk said...

No comment

Span Ows said...

Was going to add my tuppenyworth but see Elby the Bersek has done it for me. If it is clear to Milne - who has been so wrong about most things - it makes it even more incredible that it is not clear to the PTB.

That link is very scary, WWIII here we come.